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Old August 9th, 2008, 05:48 PM
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Unwanted Gifts

I didn't want to hi-jack Ladylove's thread.


My Pseudo IL's give me gifts & I don't want anything from them - but I've not told them that either I don't want to hurt my DH but is there a nice way to tell them?

Basicly, anyone who treated me as they have is not my friend. If it weren't for DH I'd have nothing to do with them. The councilor has said that I need to forgive, but I do not have to trust or respect them - those are things that are earned. My DH still wants us to be a family - its not going to happen unless I can get over the feeling that she (PseudoMIL) was "the other woman" that about destroyed my marriage (yeah- I do blame DH too- I'm trying to move on, but he wants me to be friends with "the other woman" {PMIL} and Pseudo FIL.)

(for the backstory read my Pseudo IL thread)
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Old August 9th, 2008, 07:27 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

This is a tough one, snafu. I'm not sure what the right answer is. It may depend on what relationship you want with them.

What kind of gifts are they? Are they personal gifts... the type of thing you only give a friend whose taste you know (like the kind of gifts my MIL used to give me ) ? Those gifts sometimes make the recipient uncomfortable when there's a bad relationship. Or are they generic gifts that you can give almost anyone, like flowers and food?
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Old August 9th, 2008, 08:14 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

X-mas I got a gift certificate to Williams Sonoma - still in my purse - unused - if it wasn't from them I'd of already used it

My B-day last week I got a check in a b-day card. I don't plan on cashing it.

At this time I don't want a relationship with them. I've finally realized I have a right to my own feelings. I will be polite, but that's all I have for them. I don't have a problem with DH & DSD having a relationship with them- they're their family (just not mine).
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Old August 9th, 2008, 08:26 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

Ah. So the problem isn't the gifts, its the giver.

Well, I don't know what to say. I can completely understand you not wanting their gifts after the way they've treated you, but then you've got DH who wants you to get along with them.

Have you discussed it with your counselor? In the future, I'd have DH pre-emptively (i.e. before your birthday or before Christmas) tell your PIL's that you don't feel comfortable accepting gifts from them, and leave it at that. But that's too late for what they've already given you.

You have a choice... use them or toss them. If you used them on something for SD and DS (like a Wii, or whatever W.S. has that kids would like), would that make it easier to swallow? If not, toss them. Just expect questions about the check.
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Old August 9th, 2008, 08:56 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

You could try to say something along the lines of, "As adults, we just don't need to do the gift exchange anymore." But that doesn't sound like it's happening here.

There really is no polite way to tell someone to stop giving you gifts if you have any hope of resolving the problem. It would make any polite interaction very uncomfortable in the future.

I'd just recycle whatever gift they give you if you can't bring yourself to use it or appreciate it. For some reason, giving a gift that the ILs gave to me to someone who really likes it gives me a big boost. Maybe you should try it.
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Old August 9th, 2008, 11:07 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

Quote:
Originally Posted by snafu View Post
I didn't want to hi-jack Ladylove's thread.


My Pseudo IL's give me gifts & I don't want anything from them - but I've not told them that either I don't want to hurt my DH but is there a nice way to tell them?

Basicly, anyone who treated me as they have is not my friend. If it weren't for DH I'd have nothing to do with them. The councilor has said that I need to forgive, but I do not have to trust or respect them - those are things that are earned. My DH still wants us to be a family - its not going to happen unless I can get over the feeling that she (PseudoMIL) was "the other woman" that about destroyed my marriage (yeah- I do blame DH too- I'm trying to move on, but he wants me to be friends with "the other woman" {PMIL} and Pseudo FIL.)

(for the backstory read my Pseudo IL thread)
I understand where you are coming from. I totally understand. I have been in/and still am in the same shoes.

Kindly say that you feel uncomfortable accepting personal gifts since there is such a distance in your relationship. Also state, like 1dil mentioned, that as adults there is really no need to exchange gifts. I made it clear to in-laws that all I want is for them to be nice toward my children. Otherwise, I have no interst in foney acts and BS. I am very forward and I do not beat around the bush. I pretty much say it like it is.

If you bottle in your feelings then it may bug you more. Be honest but remain strong in your expectations. No means no. Make that clear. But be blunt yet cordial.

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Old August 10th, 2008, 01:10 PM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

If they'd treated me poorly, I wouldn't want gifts from them, either.
I would say something like,
"There's no need for gifts this year, I don't need anything," and leave it at that.
As for your DH, he needs to grow up and face the situation. You're not obligated to have a relationship with people who have mistreated you.
Just be resolute. Refuse. Don't argue, just say no as often as you need to....let him visit by himself, or if you go, just detach yourself or do whatever you gotta do (sorry, I don't know your story.)

If you tell them you do not want gifts, and they shove one at you anyway; just don't take it.

It's not like they can force it on you.
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Old August 11th, 2008, 05:07 AM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honeysuckle View Post
If they'd treated me poorly, I wouldn't want gifts from them, either.
I would say something like,
"There's no need for gifts this year, I don't need anything," and leave it at that.
As for your DH, he needs to grow up and face the situation. You're not obligated to have a relationship with people who have mistreated you.
Just be resolute. Refuse. Don't argue, just say no as often as you need to....let him visit by himself, or if you go, just detach yourself or do whatever you gotta do (sorry, I don't know your story.)

If you tell them you do not want gifts, and they shove one at you anyway; just don't take it.

It's not like they can force it on you.
I still think that she should be more forward with her feelings on the issue. If she says that she doesnt want gifts and does it politely then they may still push her buttons and get her one anyway. But if she addresses the issue with somewhat of an attitude (not mean but stern/strong) then they will she that she is a no nonsense kinda gal and they may leave her alone with the BS. I mean, they may continue to be jerks but at least she will not have to deal with the gift giving and recieveing portion.
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Old August 11th, 2008, 07:48 AM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

Ladylove, it sounds like we are basically saying the same thing; although I would leave out the "I'm not accepting gifts because of the distance in our relationship" part.

I don't think she should accept the gift but I don't think she should offer a reason why. She doesn't have to answer to them or make excuses, and the best thing is to detach emotionally. Saying that you don't want a gift because of the distance between you, implies that you want to be closer; and quite frankly, I don't think I would want to be any closer to people who mistreat me.

If the OP does feel she wants to be closer, then your scenario would be good. Myself, I would be inclined to keep my distance...it just depends on what she wants and plans for the relationship, if anything.
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Old August 11th, 2008, 08:34 AM
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Re: Unwanted Gifts

yanno, I had a thought while reading through this thread...there were many times, when my son was young, and other special events that I had, in which I specifically asked everyone, not to bring any gifts. But some people are just so dead set on giving gifts. It's like it's been bred into their minds...you can't go some where unless you bring a gift....they consider it tacky not to...so, while I can understand all of your feelings on this subject, I don't think the gifts are meant to push anyone's buttons. It's just that they can't see past themselves and their own ideas of how things are done?

Just my thoughts....
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