Author Topic: dil's baby shower disaster.....  (Read 1594 times)

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bettylou

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dil's baby shower disaster.....
« on: April 17, 2010, 12:20:01 PM »
When my grandson was on the way I remember how excited I was.  I never thought he would be kept away from me.  I did not think I woud raise him or be the mommy, just the grandma that he saw at visits or that sometimes I would watch not always.  We asked Daughter in law if we could throw a shower for her and she told us ofcourse no that her friend would and I was fine with that.  Once again I was asked to bring all the food to the shower and to clean up as well, it was in a hall.  I was told I could bring myself and three family members, dauther in law did say she did not think my daughter should be there, because it "is not about her", but she did relent and allow her to come.  I told her thanks and that I would just bring my two sisters same as the wedding shower, she rolled her eyes and said "Oh Greta, make sure you tell her to buy from our registry and not from Target or Walmart this time!"  And laughed and laughed.  I ended up not even inviting Greta becaue I knew she would buy in her budget and it would not be wanted.  After the shower at clean up time daughter in law cried so much we all thought she was going crazy.  She explained to us how sad she was that she did not get everything on her list and might have to buy things herself, she also said she was hurt because she got alot of baby clothes she did not pick out.  "I did not want these cheap outfits, I wanted all the big stuff......my jogging stroller....my breast pump...."  She was in a fit til son came and told her he was going to take her out right now to get what she wanted.  No thank you cards sent to my side ofcourse, and she told me later the blanket my daughter knitted for the baby was a good "burp rag".  What a sweety

catchingup

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #1 on: April 17, 2010, 12:39:49 PM »
Sounds like a spoilt brat!!!

Hope

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #2 on: April 17, 2010, 01:30:13 PM »
Thanks to your dil, mine has just been promoted to an angel!  I don't see how your ds could feel peace in his life.......sorry.  I hope and pray things change for you all.  You, your ds, and your dd deserve so much more! 
Hugs and love your way..........Hope

Onlooker

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #3 on: April 17, 2010, 05:57:30 PM »
Hmmm.

This relationship is sounding messier and messier. I see issues on both sides.

Betty, I see (from some of your other posts, not this one) you as having some issues with boundaries and expectations and pride and emotional needs. I see you expecting that since you raised your son, you're entitled to have a say in his adult life, in things where you're really not entitled to that say. And I see you having trouble shrugging and saying, "Oh, well, I'm sure they have their reasons; I won't take it personally" when things go wrong. Instead you seem to feel that many things that happen are about depriving you of love and respect that you're entitled to, when they may not be about you at all.

In your DIL's case, I'm starting to suspect that she has some sort of personality disorder. And, no, I'm emphatically _not_ suggesting that you mention such a thing to your son, to your DIL, or to anyone that ever speaks to your son or your DIL. Not in words or hints or so much as raised eyebrows. Doing so would probably be the fastest path to being permanently cut off.

But I mention a personality disorder because some of your DIL's behaviors are very "off", and seem to reflect her taking things very personally. And, most significantly, she doesn't seem to enjoy them. It sounds like she's perceiving attacks when no attacks would be perceived by the average person. And if she feels attacked, that may explain why she's attacking.

For example, most people, if they don't receive the breast pump that they asked for, would shrug and remind themselves that no one's entitled a gift, that these are hard economic times, and that if they want one they can go buy one. Your DIL may perceive it as _every single person_ who attended the shower saying to themselves, "Feh - she's not worth that effort. I'm not giving her that; this piece of junk is good enough for her." She may perceive it as a group communication of contempt for her personally.

Going back to the WalMart stuff, your DIL doesn't like WalMart. She may not have the empathy to realize that that's not a universal feeling, that other people may have other opinions. Your DIL thinks it's junk; Greta thinks it's fine. But if your DIL doesn't have the empathy to understand that Greta thinks it's fine, she may think that _Greta_ thinks it's junk. That Greta gave her junk. That Greta has such contempt for her that she knowingly and deliberately gave her junk.

That perception would be wrong, absolutely dead wrong, but can you see how, if she perceives things that way, that may explain some of her lashing out?

As another example, you see the hand-knitted blanket as a loving offering from your daughter. She may see it as one more communication that, "You're not worth getting what you asked for; you're worthless." And your daughter is in her family, so she can lash out at her safely, so your daughter got the anger that your DIL didn't dare unleash at the other attendees at the shower. Again, if there's a deficit of empathy, your DIL may not be able to understand that the work that goes into a hand-crafted gift signals respect and caring for the gift recipient.

I'm not claiming that all points of view are equal. The blanket was a loving offering deserving of respect. Even if your DIL didn't like it, the appropriate response was to thank your daughter and praise it and then quietly put it away or give it away, in a way that ensured that you and your daughter would never, ever, know.

I am saying that when your DIL is angry and lashes out, it's not _necessarily_ about you at all. It may be about problems with empathy, with self-respect, with anger, with any number of other emotional and personality issues.

And I'm _not_ suggesting that you try harder and harder to read her mind, and try harder and harder to make life fulfill her expectations.  You should try to identify which of your behaviors are genuinely inappropriate and act to fix them, but you can't fix life for her, so don't try. No more Coach bags, no more dogsitting, no more lovingly handcrafted gifts.

And that all puts you into a very difficult stuation. Both you and your DIL seem to be taking conflicts very personally. Both of you seem to have some flawed perceptions. So far, I'm seeing more flawed perceptions coming from her, but they are coming on both sides. You need a clear-eyed view of what you're doing wrong and need to make up for, _and_ what she's doing wrong and you need to just step around and try not to react to. And eyes that clear are hard to develop, when it's yourself that you're looking at.

And your son can't be your ally in this. He needs to be his wife's ally.

I'm still of the opinion that the best actions for you are to (1) set some boundaries, like no longer caring for the dog, no longer slaving away at parties that you're not the organizer of, no longer offering expensive gifts, and so on, and (2) to detach and get some distance from your son and his family.

And, you have a daughter and a husband. I would focus on them for now, and get some cheerful, pleasant distance from your son and his family.

Onlooker

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #4 on: April 17, 2010, 06:02:36 PM »
I think I have a girl-crush on Onlooker!

I emphatically agree with everything she wrote.

Hope

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2010, 07:51:11 PM »
Personally, I find the things that bettylou accidentally did wrong (such as being overzealous about gc) was just that........an accident.  She seemed innocent to me - an innocent person that sincerely apologized for her errors.  I think it's a good thing to look within oneself and find ways to improve yourself, and bettylou has indicated that she appreciated everyone's take on what she had done wrong and plans to work on improving herself.  I like the idea of her distancing herself from dil/ds, but it's so sad for her.  I agree with onlooker that bettylou's dil may have some mental issues.  I also don't get why her dil would entertain xh when they don't even have children together, being thrown into forced contact.  The relationship dil and ds have sounds dysfunctional to me.  I'm happy that bettylou has this site to air her feelings and I want to support her the best I can.  I know she's hurting and I know she's doing her best to be a loving mil/dm/gm/dw.  Be strong, bettylou!
Hugs to all, Hope

cremebrulee

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Re: dil's baby shower disaster.....
« Reply #6 on: April 18, 2010, 05:34:02 AM »
Personally, I find the things that bettylou accidentally did wrong (such as being overzealous about gc) was just that........an accident.  She seemed innocent to me - an innocent person that sincerely apologized for her errors.  I think it's a good thing to look within oneself and find ways to improve yourself, and bettylou has indicated that she appreciated everyone's take on what she had done wrong and plans to work on improving herself.  I like the idea of her distancing herself from dil/ds, but it's so sad for her.  I agree with onlooker that bettylou's dil may have some mental issues.  I also don't get why her dil would entertain xh when they don't even have children together, being thrown into forced contact.  The relationship dil and ds have sounds dysfunctional to me.  I'm happy that bettylou has this site to air her feelings and I want to support her the best I can.  I know she's hurting and I know she's doing her best to be a loving mil/dm/gm/dw.  Be strong, bettylou!
Hugs to all, Hope

Hope, I really liked this post...

I think a lot of posts here were once again, talking about expectation...BettyLou, didn't act the way DIL thought she should act, or visa versa...so those actions were taken as a personal attack against oneself...

DIL is very young, very stubborn, wants to do things the way she wants things done and expects it to be that way period...she doesn't possess the ability to understand, that other people do things differently...

My inlaws were the same way...I remember how they wanted help, but wanted everything to be done they're way...perfect example was, when I was helping by arranging a vegtable platter...my sister in law didn't like the way it was arranged, and rearraged it...at first I was really offended, and then, I just laughed it off and walked away...I could have left that one situation, blow up into an all out war...instead, I realized, she was nurvous and simply wanted things to be as she pictured them to be, picture perfect...in her mind, she knew how she wanted things to be....was she controlling, no, she was unaware of the way other people did things...

How many times have we asked our children or our mates to do something, and b/c they didn't do it the way we thought it should be or the way we wanted it...we redid it..

Bettylou, I really agree with Hope and everyone else who suggested you step back and regroup so to speak...you can't read minds...like one of the posters wrote, however, if you try and understand it from another perspective, it may help you along...I don't mean to suggest that DIL is right and your wrong...that is not the case...however, given time, you may realize...what a lot of these posters have said....different perspectives on a situation is a positive energy, which helps us view things in a different way...and can be helpful...in the end, you have to do what you feel is best, but one thing I always try and consider before I make a decission..."Am I doing what is best for only me, or am I don't what is best for everyone concerned...?"