Baby shower issues.. Help — The Bump
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Baby shower issues.. Help

My brother is expecting a child with his wife in September. I am expecting my child in August. My mother was going to do a baby shower for my little one at the end of June seeing as my husband will be deployed for the birth of our child so I was trying to do it so he would be home to atleast enjoy opening and putting everything together. My sister in law less then half a day after I tell her the date we picked for the shower informs me that she will then do hers two weeks prior. This one set me off because it seemed very intentional and two she's not due for an entire month after I am. Why couldn't she wait? My mother trying to be the peace keeper then doesn't say anything to my brother of his wife about their date. Then after three weeks of my husband telling me that we do not need a baby shower and would be just fine without if my mother wasn't going to ask them to move their date. ( mind you my mother had asked us to move ours around several times prior to picking that date due to her previous plans. Clearly not easy when he has only certain days he can be away from base) So here we are three weeks later and my mother orders the tent to be used at both parties and the food for both parties.. Which I know I shouldn't be so childish but it upset me because she has her own mother who can do things for her. My husband is estranged from his family and will not be inviting even his mother. Yet by the end of the planning these parties are similar except for the size. Hers being much larger because she has two families and we only have one. Then I start thinking how some people will not come because it's two Saturday's in the same month two weeks apart and how that's a lot of time commitment and financial commitment. I feel this is unfair and am thinking of canceling and just taking the money we would've spent and buy what we need as we go along. Am I wrong in expecting them to have their shower later in the summer? It's not really like we can change ours if I want him involved.

Re: Baby shower issues.. Help

  • VORVOR member

    Um, yeah.  Ditto the previous response.  It's a baby shower.  Don't overblow the importance of it.  Do NOT make this AN ISSUE that divides your family.  Come on... really. 

    As she has more people, there could be very valid reasons as to why she picked the date she picked.  She may have family who she wants to be there but for some reason, this is the only weekend that works.

    Don't assume it's about you. 

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  • ashcleyashcley member
    I guess being that I didn't explain that this is not the first nor will it be the last time things like this have/will go on. Which is the cause for stress. Every other time I've caved in and dealt with it and I'm just at the point now I don't feel like I should always be the one who bends to make everyone else comfortable. I haven't sent out our invitations for this specific reason and being that I would rather be the adult and just not do the baby shower. I can understand how you would think this was childish but it's just a constant thing that goes on with this woman. The exact comment was " if we have it before then we won't need to worry about getting the shittier presents" which was the point in which my husband lost his temper and decided to tell my mother not to bother.
  • VORVOR member
    If your SIL is an obnoxious tacky person, people will have already figured that out. Cancelling your shower, particularly after your mom ordered everything does not make your SIL any more obnoxious to outsiders, but it will make you look obnoxious.
    This.  Trust me - people will have her # if she's really this much of a pill.

    And people aren't going to give you shittier presents just because your shower is 2nd.  That's ridiculous and your SIL is amazingly petty.

    Don't give her so much power in your life.  Realize that if you can see this about her, others can too.  Just sit back and laugh about it.  The less upset you get, the less reactionary you are, the more foolish she's going to look.
  • ashcleyashcley member
    I guess for someone who is doing a baby shower to get presents because they need things I could see how I would sound childish. However we've already purchased everything that we could possibly need. We were doing it to celebrate the baby. It was the point that she was doing this to purposely start an issue and that my mother instead of trying to get a handle on the situation before it came to this was trying to keep the peace. It's not unknown I don't care for my SIL and we all went to high school together so it's not like people that we both know didn't expect this to happen and all are at all shocked by the behavior. So instead of feeding into her I'd just rather not have one. I guess my issue was more so that my mother was letting her get away with the behavior. Not so much that I expected my SILs behavior to change. Thank you for all the opinions.
  • lola2beelola2bee member
    edited May 2015
    I suspect she picked having hers earlier to avoid what you mentioned... People not coming to the second one because they already contributed to the first. Yikes! Seems shady. I have no advice other than just to say no to a shower if it's too much stress. Not worth it!

    Edited: just read your follow up comment about "shittier presents". So sorry you have to deal with her. Ugh!
  • I guess I don't see what the big deal is.  Your brother is also her baby and her baby is having a baby.  She is happy for the both of you and wants to celebrate for the both of you.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I know I would like to throw a shower for my son and future daughter in law one day.  

    And it would never occur to me to give a worse gift to the person having a shower two weeks later.  I don't know where she is getting that.  
  • I guess I don't see what the big deal is.  Your brother is also her baby and her baby is having a baby.  She is happy for the both of you and wants to celebrate for the both of you.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I know I would like to throw a shower for my son and future daughter in law one day.  

    And it would never occur to me to give a worse gift to the person having a shower two weeks later.  I don't know where she is getting that.  
    This, I have a budget that I'm happy to spend on gifts in certain situations depending on the event and the relationship I have with the recipient. Assuming I was equally close to both couples, then I would spend the same amount. I might spend more on one than the other if I was really close with one, but the timing of the shower wouldn't change that.
    Elizabeth 5yrs old Jane 3yrs old

  • As a guest i would feel embarrassed to give gifts of differing values if I was invited to two siblings' (inlaw or not) showers in the same month. I also would not spend less just bc they happen to be close together. In my enormous family we often have birthday parties/baptisms/bridal&babyshowers doubling up in the SAME WEEKEND or one right after another. For instance my mom and I are throwing my sister a sip n see on Sunday and the very next Sunday is my son's double baptism party w his cousin. I'm not worried. I'm sure some people will come to both or miss one or the other. It's summer and people have lives. I just attend what works w my schedule, not what event comes first. I'm really not trying to needle you, but what would concern me more is the fact that at 3 weeks out no invites have been sent yet... THAT might result in poor attendance and scrambling to buy gifts off the registry in time. Best of luck with whatever you end up doing!
  • VORVOR member
    I guess I don't see what the big deal is.  Your brother is also her baby and her baby is having a baby.  She is happy for the both of you and wants to celebrate for the both of you.  There is nothing wrong with that.  I know I would like to throw a shower for my son and future daughter in law one day.  

    And it would never occur to me to give a worse gift to the person having a shower two weeks later.  I don't know where she is getting that.  
    The bolded? So very true.  Didn't look at it like that, but yes, so very very true. 
  • ashcleyashcley member
    I could understand that but that would mean that they would've had to ask my parents what date to plan the shower for instead of just calling everyone and inviting 40 something people then telling my parents that they couldn't do it at their house because they magically didn't know they were residing the house that same week (also they couldn't fit 40 something people in their tiny back yard in the city). Her comment was well since you are paying for the tents for the baby shower two weeks after you guys could just do the same exact thing for us. So instead of doing her own things she just basically barged in on what my mother was doing for me and guilted her into being okay with it. I thought baby showers were supposed to be held for the person not that the person planned it for themselves. I wouldn't be so irked by the whole thing if it was even the first time this pregnancy she had done things like this. Best example would be before we went to find out the sex of the baby she had asked us when the doctor had set up the ultra sounds. Then because she works in the hospital she started doing very early ultrasounds two to three weeks before ours was scheduled seeing as she's due the month after us. There really wasn't a medical reason to do it but she and my brother just had to know what they were having first. It was extremely childish. Or the fact my mother bought us each baby clothes as the months were going and I have black hair and she has red, so my mom thinking that their child would be fair skinned with either blonde or red bought them light pinks yellows ect. Things that would compliment the child. She bought me bolder colors and things that would compliment olive skin and dark hair. She started digging through my basket of stuff and picking things she didn't want out of hers and swapping it. Honestly I wouldn't of cared if she asked to trade things but how rude is that to do after my mom picked them? Or to just feel so comfortable to be able to do that.. I feel bad that my mother is caught between us but at the same time Instead of playing into this game with her I figured not doing the shower was the right idea. I am not a spiteful person nor do I have it in me to be as catty. So I figured if I chose not to then it would be fine for every one and I'd get over it.
  • Pregnancy is stressful enough as it is without bringing in-law drama into it.  It does sound like you are a tad bit jealous of her and letting things get to you more than you should.  I would really try to let it roll off your back.  People who know her will know she's ridiculous.  Just try to be grateful that your mom is throwing you a shower.  Some people aren't that lucky as you can read by many other posts here on this board.  Try to relax, enjoy your special day, and not let her get to you.  They bigger deal you make about it, the more people will think you're being the childish one.  Good luck with everything!  I hope you are able to take deep breaths, step back, and just enjoy the rest of the pregnancy and the shower!   
  • I'm late to the party here, but I agree with others who would advise you to be gracious and accept the shower that's being thrown for you, and don't worry about what your SIL is up to.  Relatives who are close to both of you will certainly know that they're probably going to be invited to two showers in a short time period.  This happens in families from time to time, and your mutual relatives will know how to deal with it.  Either they'll budget or they'll skip whichever shower they least feel like attending.  Even if people don't feel they can attend two showers within two weeks, people who want to buy you a gift and welcome you to motherhood will still do so -- they'll just wait until the baby is born.

    Also, if she's truly a jerk, others will know.  Just be gracious and polite at your own shower, and don't worry so much about what she's up to.  Because if you keep down the road of being so preoccupied with her, you're going to run a risk of looking like the one who is a jerk.

    High School English teacher and mom of 2 kids:

    DD, born 9/06/00 -- 12th grade
    DS, born 8/25/04 -- 7th grade
  • ashcleyashcley member
    In the first place you're telling me I'm being childish and that I sound jealous and I should suck it up and deal with it then you switch to telling me that I should speak up and make everyone uncomfortable and give her exactly what she wants which is to push my buttons until I blow up. This was more so to vent about it before blowing up at anyone. I am staying quiet because if I said anything it would then be me being childish as well? I get that it seems like I'm complaining and maybe I am but your advice is just as confused as I am in what I should do. Do I say hey, I really don't care for you as we all know and you're doing these things to annoy me so I'm either going to create a scene and let you feel like you've accomplished what you were trying to do? Or do I stay quiet for the sake of everyone and just not let her have the satisfaction of beating me to a baby shower. Either way you're saying I'll be childish so then what?
  • You are childish for cancelling your shower because she has hers forst. It DOESNT MATTER why she has hers first, her reasons etc. throwing a fit because someone has a shower before you is childish, period. You are focusing way too much on her and why she did that and how she one upped you that time etc. focus on yourself and you baby and your family and have your shower. What she does really should not be that important. It can be annoying sure but seriously you sound like you are obsessing pver wvery thing she does/says
  • ashcleyashcley member
    Where there is a middle ground with most people there isn't with her. If I politely said hey those are my things please don't swap them out would then turn into a crying fit from her to my brother then to my mom where somehow my nice calm comment gets turned into me being a rotten jerk to her. I get it you've never had to deal with someone like this and I can see why this comes off as no big deal to you. For your sake I hope you never do because people like that are terrible to deal with because you're either in a confrontation or you're tiptoeing around them because no matter what there is no right answer. Thank you for proving my point that no matter how childish her behavior was in the first place that I have no room to do anything besides avoid it. Yeah it may be childish but I'd rather not have anything then let it be ruined by the actions of someone I can't stand and anyone who knows me will know that's the reason and not that I'm being childish because I didn't get it first. Had nothing to do with being first other then the intentional annoyance from her which I'm sure I'll deal with the rest of my life.

    Thank you everyone for your comments we've decided we can cover everything on our own and will have a baptism party and a big first birthday party for her instead
  • I like to get straight to the point and by the source. I would've called a family meeting as soon as you knew her date. A meeting with your husband, brother, sister-n-law and Mother. This way you both could understand each other's point of view. Perhaps she wanted to ensure your husband was also present at her shower as it is a family event? Or maybe your Mom and her thought of the date given it may be easy to plan both the sane month, maybe even gaining a discount from the vendor. This would also be an opportunity to point out it may be a lot to expect your same guests to purchase 2 gifts in one month vs spacing it out.

    My point is- having a conversation will clarify matters rather than wonder why and potentially jumping to conclusions. Everyone thinks and interprets things differently.

    Please enjoy your time and not focus on her or your Mom's involvement. Your Mom wants to provide for both her children :)
  • Honestly , the best way to deal with toxic people is to cut them out of your life. Obviously it's not easy when it's an SIL, but seriously, cut her out as much as possible.
    Agree with this 100%

    Let your brother deal with this piece of work he married. 
    Vive Les Frasers
    Related image

  • VORVOR member
    edited May 2015
    ashcley said:
     Yeah it may be childish but I'd rather not have anything then let it be ruined by the actions of someone I can't stand and anyone who knows me will know that's the reason and not that I'm being childish because I didn't get it first. Had nothing to do with being first other then the intentional annoyance from her which I'm sure I'll deal with the rest of my life.
    Huh?  So now it's that your shower will be ruined by her??  That's not at all what you've been saying here - at all.

    I'm beginning to think this is MUD.   You're talking in circles, acting incredibly dense, and then totally changing what is supposedly the issue.

    If this isn't MUD, well... then KOKO and have a long, hard road ahead of you when it comes to your SIL.
  • CEB37 said:
    What in the fresh hell?



  • ashcley said:

    Where there is a middle ground with most people there isn't with her. If I politely said hey those are my things please don't swap them out would then turn into a crying fit from her to my brother then to my mom where somehow my nice calm comment gets turned into me being a rotten jerk to her.

    But so what? She has a hissy fit and people think you're mean? Oh well. You don't have to let her walk all over you. Obviously, somewhere along the line she has learned this behaviour works , which is why she does it. Stop letting her. You can be very nice about it, but you do not have to let her take your stuff. Let her have her tantrum. She'll learn quickly that this doesn't work with you - which might even cause her to stop doing it.
  • Are you close with your brother? Could you talk to him and ask why they chose that date? Your SIL sounds like a piece of work. My cousins have a similar situation. She had been planning her wedding for nearly a year and then her younger brother up and gets married a few weeks before her. She was livid! My new cousin in law is a master at manipulation. They are very young, 22. Had babies immidiately and are now living with my aunt! Cousin in law gets jealous when my cousin and her mother go out and do things together and don't include her etc. we in the family are sick of her and I didn't give them a wedding present. I did send them a present for their first baby and gave a pack of diapers for the second but whenever my cousin finally has a baby I will shower her with gifts. I think people who are close to you will know her # and not play into it. Her true colors will show if they don't see it yet. You should just try to focus on you and avoid her as much as you can. Start nesting and getting excited for your new arrival. Plan your nursery theme and don't share info with her (cause she might steal it) I'm sorry you are dealing with this and I hope it works out.
    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • ashcleyashcley member
    I personally don't care if she cries or if she throws a fit but the issue is all the ways that I should've gone about things such as the clothes and what not I've done previously and it's blown up in my face with her telling my brother magically I swore at her or I called her a name then she decides not to let my brother or their other child come around my parents to punish them for not bending to make her feel more comfortable. Then she gets what she wanted anyways and I get treated like a jerk because she's sensitive and I need to be kind and since I'm a stronger person emotionally I need to just let it go and let her have what she wants. I'm tired of it. I get that everyone thinks that I'm trying to create a scene to get my way but that's not the case because there's no changing her date it's in two weeks and she already invited everyone and pushed it on my mom. Who admits that she now sees this was intentional and that she's sorry for letting it get this far. My father on the other hand is more then livid with the situation since it was thrown upon them and then demanded that they purchase everything food drinks tents ect because her parents only offered to take care of the cake even when my parents brought up the fact it's their daughter. The problem I've had with her from the start was she saw my brother coming from ten miles away and she's got champagne taste on a beer budget and my parents are better off then most and they give an effort to make each of us more comfortable, the difference is that my husband and I don't take the hand outs where my brother and his wife wouldn't survive with their expenses if they didn't.

    I'm not dense I just refuse to accept that people allow others to be this way and they let it go. So I told my brother I had an issue with this and it was shitty behavior and that it was clearly intentional, he told me she planned it there because she was worried about getting poor presents and that it shouldn't matter that they needed to use the same tent I rented because my husband makes more and that the tables and stuff shouldn't matter because they were already going to be there.. Just entitled child problems to the fullest. So I just told them that I wasn't doing it and I wouldn't help at all and they could cover the tents and tables themselves because why should I pay to make their baby shower easier when they've caused me this grief over the whole thing.

    Instead we are going to have the baby shower at the lake house with round tents and pretty tables with it being catered by a tea party company with cute little China tea pots.. My mother told everyone not to tell her about it because the simple picnic that I originally planned she wanted the same thing same foods ect. So to avoid her asking my mom to switch hers to being the same thing everyone has been asked to keep it quiet. All of which I will not invite her to attend.
  • Ok, I understand now.

    I would let the shower issue go for now, but you need to continue being direct and firm with your SIL.  No yelling, no screaming no name calling ( not that you ever did) but a firm " No, that won't work for me " kind of thing.  Trust me, she isn't going to keep that baby from them because at this point she needs them more than they need her.  

    You all know she acts like this because everyone is afraid to say " boo " to her, so you need to be the one to say it.  Don't get emotional, just matter of factly let her know you won't tolerate her nonsense and you won't be manipulated.  Now, that might mean she will make empty threats to your parents that will upset them, but you will have to not let it bother you because I have a feeling that baby will be dumped at your parent's house all the time.  
  • So let me get this straight. They already have another kid??
    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • CEB37 said:

    Between this post and the one about hosting your own shower, holy Pregzilla batman.  I can't even.  Woah.

    No joke. I don't even WANT a baby shower, because I feel so weird being like, "HEY EVERYONE, MY HUSBAND AND I PROCREATED COME BUY US STUFF!" but since my mom and best friend took those reigns, I will just be thankful and relax.

    So much entitlement.
  • Granted I skimmed 85% of the comments, but why even give your SIL the satisfaction of engaging? If she's truly that bratty, why not let her just self-implode as you ignore her/just tell her no?
  • Is this real life?

    I'm glad to hear you're going ahead with a shower, because that would be pretty messed up to turn down your mom's gift to you just to spite your SIL, when in all reality you would be giving her exactly what she wants. When  you said you weren't having it, I very much pictured a little child crossing their arms and holding their breath.
  • JFC this thread is one hot steamy mess. I can hardly follow it. Baby showers are meant to welcome new mothers to motherhood, so if SIL already has a child it is tacky as hell to request that your mother throw her another. That aside you need to put your big girl panties on and get over who else in your life may be having babies or showers. Be grateful that you are having a shower and graciously accept whatever gifts you may get, regardless of wether you registered for them or not. As for everything else in this thread, I just can't. But somebody said Bitch Eating Crackers and that made reading it worthwhile.
  • Look. Your mom is a big girl, she can pick and fight her own battles. Has it occurred to you that your mom might be excited for your shower? Many grandmothers on here have stated that it's different when their daughter is pregnant compared to their daughter in law. Cancelling your shower is just feeding the beast drama that is your SIL. You want to really get your SILs goat? Have a sip n see right after she's due. Your baby will be a bit older and thus cuter. SIL won't be able to come most likely and you get everyone oohing and awning over your kid.

    Excuse my quote fail as I am having technical difficulties, but I TOTALLY get what your describing. I have witnessed people who operate like the description of your SIL. @wassuphoes has an amazeballs idea there... grab that ish up. Moving forward, have your shower with your mom and DH and ENJOY it. Also, you can make plans to individualize it with your mom and DH. Just make it VERY VERY VERY clear that you don't want the details shared AT ALL. Also, in the future, ya know when you plan your LO's birthday's and NOT share details, especially if you know your SIL is like this. She just will get an invitation to said event and that's all. It would help you not get pissed at your mom, your mom doesn't have to be in the middle and SIL won't have the intel to burst your bubble. I hope that helps....but seriously, sip and see's are cool events. I want 1...maybe I'll have one...thanks @wassuphoes (sip and sees are my like baby obsessions...the baby can be like a mini celeb and then you can make a cool photo album for when they are older annnnnd it's a good way to have less visitors at your house)
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