Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Re-Gifting the Inlaws - Is It Too Late?

There are trade-in plans for cell phones, rental cars, and lots of other things. I think it's about time that someone invented one for in-laws. I am royally, royally pissed off at mine. In fact, I have been furious since last week, and it's taken me this long to cool down enough to even talk about it.

About two months ago, they (ie my MIL) emailed me looking for dates for events that the kids were having this season so they could come to them. When I told her that there were three - the school musical, the church Christmas pageant, and the Christmas eve family service - in her words, they wanted to do them all. About two weeks later, she backed out of the church pageant because my SIL's husband's sister was having a surprise 30th birthday party. BUT, she was still coming up on Thursday for the school thing, and have dinner with us beforehand.

Two days before the performance, I emailed them to make sure they were still coming, saying I knew they had been driving up this way a lot for the new twins, and were they still planning on coming here still. Nothing. I knew then, but I waited. The morning of, I got an email saying that it was going to be really rainy, so they weren't going to come. They ditched Josie on the day of her school performance because of RAIN. They never even bothered to call or connect with her at all. I had thought (hoped) that Josie wouldn't remember, because I hadn't said anything, but she did, and for the first time, she realized that she had been ditched, and cried because she had really, really wanted them to come. It was the first thing she asked when she woke up, if they were still coming for dinner and to hear her poem read that night, since hers was one of seven selected from the entire third and fourth grade to be read.

My baby cried. Strike one.

Then, they had another opportunity to come here to support her a few days later, at our church pageant, where she had a solo, but I don't think it occured to them to ditch my SIL's husband's sister for their grandchild. No. Granted, they had said they were going to go, but I'm SURE no one would have cared had they not gone, and everyone would have understood. I doubt Chrystal would have cried had her brother's inlaws not shown up. But, NO.

Strike two.

I'm telling you, if they don't come here on Christmas eve, and either of the kids cries over it, I will be PISSED. What's *supposed* to happen is that we're having Xmas eve brunch at Kathy's house, with the new twins, and then afterwards they will come the rest of the way to our place for the rest of the afternoon/evening, and to the service to hear Josie play in the prelude and both kids perform in their choirs and the kids' bell choir. I know they're getting older, and rain is unpleasant, but come on. They could have at least come to the church pageant; it was a beautiful day, and it was a great performance. I had even emailed them a response that Josie had cried when she heard they weren't coming, but that she understood. I never even got a response.

DH and I have talked about this, and we know what's happened - the new twins were born. It was like this before Ryan passed away, too. He and his sister were It for them, and unfortunately it took Ryan's death to make them wake up and spend more time with the other children. Now, though, there are more twins, and they're new, and will fill some of the void left by Ryan, so... yeah. Except, this time, my kids are getting old enough to know they're being ditched. My other SIL, Jen, and I have talked about the noticeable difference in how our combined children are treated compared to the older two, so it's not just my kids.

They're not bad people, and they're not being hurtful on purpose. They just don't think. Somehow, that doesn't really make it better.


d e v a n said...

That sucks. Really, really sucks. I hope they knock it off!

Anonymous said...

When my MIL says or does something completly idiodic, dh or FIL says something like 'she just wasn't thinking' or 'she means well' or 'that's just her'. That to me just excuses her behavior. If I walked around kicking people for no reason, you wouldn't hear them say "oh, that's just her- she kicks people. That's just what she does". My MIL verbally kicks me all the time, and I am sick of it too.

Let me know if you find a way to trade them in. ;)

Kristi said...

That is so uncool. Grandparents are not supposed to make their grandkids cry! And they definitely shouldn't play favorites! I hope they show up for Christmas Eve!!

Swistle said...

They made Josie cry because of RAIN? I hate them.

creative kerfuffle said...

well, my FIL lives 22 hrs away but even w/ that he's not really involved in my kids life. and my parents live 20 mins away and of their 6 grandkids they lavish the attention on my sister's kids. however, now that my sister has moved out of my mom's house my mom is realizing she doesn't really have a relationship w/ the other grandkids and is scrambling to try to do so. my kids are over it at this point and having never had her attention they don't miss or want it now. my mom is reaping what she sowed and i don't feel the least bit sorry for her.

Not Your Aunt Bea said...

They're missing out on being a special part of your kids lives- and they are great kids- so I hope they realize it before it is too late. What's worse is that your kids are old enough to realize it for themselves what kind of people they are, which will leave a greater (bad) impression than they know.
Poor Josie. That is a lot for a little kid to take.