The moment my younger (and only) sister found out I was pregnant she said, "I can't wait to throw you a shower!" I cried a little inside knowing that it was going to turn into a huge pain in my butt, but I didn't have the heart to deprive her of this. (A little background: Our mother passed away two years ago, and my sister had emergency surgery for an ectopic pregnancy a month before our mother's death. Needless to say, she's been through hell and is now super excited that there is finally going to be a new life in the family.) The problem is my sister is very irresponsible and oblivious to anything she may be doing to make things harder on those around her. She is the center of her universe. Oh yeah, and she SUCKS with money management.
She threw my bridal shower last summer, and it almost didn't happen. She changed the date three different times, and I found out after the shower that all the guests were invited one week in advance by text message. (I gave her the guest list over two months beforehand). Most of the guests were from out-of-town and couldn't take off work or cancel plans in time to make it. My husband later told me, that if his mother (who lives five hours away) had not stepped in last minute, there would have been no food or drinks at the shower either.
None of this was a shock to me. In fact, it's pretty par for the course for her. She was originally supposed to get married two months before me. I have now been married eight months, and she has changed her wedding date at least five different times. Any time she has a little extra cash, she gets really excited about planning something. Then she blows all of her money on useless stuff and ends up back at square one again. (To give you a better idea of her money management skills: she talks about her weekly carton of cigarettes like it's a necessary expense.)
On to the baby shower:
I'm due in June. Near the beginning of March, she began talking baby shower ideas. She had just come into a little extra money and was eager to start planning. At this time, I politely requested that the invitations go out at least 2-3 weeks in advance to give people time to plan. She informed me that one of her friends, who I've never met before, was going to help her plan the shower. She said this knowing that at least three of MY friends had offered to help. I said nothing at the time, but was a little annoyed that someone I didn't even know was going to plan something for me. Later, I told her that I had some ideas I would like incorporated and would like to have some input on the shower. NOT that I wanted to plan the entire thing. I even offered to pay for any extra cost over her budget my requests might require. Basically, I wanted a coed cookout so my husband could be involved and those traveling from out of town didn't have to come alone.
We settled on a date in mid-May. As my husband and I were in the middle of moving in March, I told her I would have the guest list to her by the first of April and would start work on the registry then. The next four weeks were a complete struggle with her. Every other day she was after me to get my registry done so the invitations could go out immediately. This was over two months before the shower. I continued to tell her that I would have stuff to her in plenty of time to get the invitations out at least one month in advance. To try and ease her mind I told her to verbally tell some out of town family the date that way they would have a heads up to make travel plans if they wanted to come. This wasn't good enough. I finally had to get rude and tell her to leave me alone so DH and I could finish moving.
By April 1st, we were moved, and I put the guest list together that day. A day or so later, she and her fiance came over. I showed her the guest list and was about to print it out for her so she had everyone's contact information. She said, "Well, I'll have to wait and see if I'll have the money. I might be able to order invitations in a couple of weeks." She didn't bother to take the guest list with her when she left. After that, every time I've talked to her about shower stuff she says "okay" or "maybe I can do it later." No other response. I finally offered to order the invitations myself, and she said "Okay, I'll pay you back when I can." I asked her if we were still putting her number as RSVP, and she said yes. So, after talking it over with her (price and all), I ordered the invitations with HER phone number on them and her name as hostess. Three times I asked and confirmed this with her.
This is what has me ready to spit nails: The invitations came quickly, and everything was printed perfectly. I went ahead and sent them out myself since she didn't have the guest list. It was honestly just easier that way. I mailed them last evening. Also, last evening, I get a text from my sister asking me to renew the minutes on her phone, and she would pay me back in a week (second time she has asked this favor in two months). I told her I couldn't because my bank accounts were low and I still needed to order the birthing tub... All true. (She and her fiance both have jobs... his pays very well. I finally left my job due to HG and my decision to be a SAHM, and my husband is employed but in the process of trying to find a better job.) She says okay... a few hours later, I get a text from a phone number I have never seen saying, "Hey, it's your sister. I couldn't keep my original number so this one needs to go on the rsvps." She knew very well that the invites had already been printed and delivered.
I should have gone with my gut and put my own phone number down. (And before anyone asks, no, I couldn't add her email to the invitations because she had no internet connection.)
None of this surprises me, but that doesn't stop me from wanting to wring her neck. Sometimes I wonder if she does this stuff on purpose or if she really is just that inconsiderate. Or maybe I'm just insanely unreasonable.