Jump to content

Recommended Posts

Hi guys! I would like to ask for your opinion on the following:

 

First, let me say that I have had such amazing support from my ex MIL and my ex SIL throughout my hardship since last year. We get along beautifully and talk to each other often.

 

That said, my ex SIL's daughter will be graduating from college this month. I am going to send my niece a check for $200 which, to me, is a nice gift. Obviously, her grandmother will be sending her a gift as well. Here is my dilemma: I don't intend for my ex MIL to tell me how much she is sending but, at the same time, I do not want to outshine her (which I might not). So, should I tell my ex MIL that I will be sending my niece this amount, or just send it with the hope that I won't overshadow her gift? Thank you so much!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I mean....it's not a competition so not sure why you are thinking it would be overshadowing or anything such. Granted, I don't know your family dynamics. If in doubt and it matters to you that you don't overstep, then simply send less. Granted, that can backfire too. They might judge you as being cheap. I guess my point is that if they want to have a negative reaction, they'll find a way. If not, then they'll be happy with whatever you send without creating drama around it, so you can be as generous as you wish.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd just send the gift personally, as it's just that: a gift from you to her. Gifts are just about celebrating someone with a little shine, not under-shining or out-shining others.

 

You of course know the people and dynamic better. Is the ex-MIL sensitive to such matters, prone to weaving narratives of drama? Regardless, I'd say a $200 check, while very nice, is also about as "safe" as you can get to celebrate a college graduate: a hefty enough figure to mark "adulthood," but hardly an extravagant one.

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's very sensitive and kind of you. I'd lower it personally if you think that you'd offend anyone. If your budget is normally higher or you have had issues in the past where you've flaunted your wealth or are self-conscious about it, keep a low profile and don't look for trouble. In the end this is a small token gift. I'd treat it as such and keep your relationships intact and your gifts in an appropriate range.

 

That you're thinking about this in the first place tells me you're prone to feeling self-conscious about your gifts. I think sometimes it's more about everyone as a whole rather than doing whatever you want.

Link to post
Share on other sites

If this is your kinda normal then I would just do it without any conversation with the MIL ....For me it is a lot for a niece and not something our family would do unless you are the parent ..I think $200 is about 150 quid for us and a very very generous gift . But we are all different , so like I say , if it is your norm ....just go for it . I know you are a little sensitive soul so try not to overthink this .

Link to post
Share on other sites
I wouldn't worry about what other people might think about the amount you send.

 

You may be in a better financial position than your ex MIL, and if so, I'm sure she knows it. Don't shortchange the graduate because you think it might offend someone else. It won't.

 

I just don't want to possibly offend her if she is planning to send less. I don't know her financial situation (she's a widow) but I'm pretty sure that I'm in a better financial position but I certainly am not sure. For all I know, she might send more than me which would be OK. I think I worry too much.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I mean....it's not a competition so not sure why you are thinking it would be overshadowing or anything such. Granted, I don't know your family dynamics. If in doubt and it matters to you that you don't overstep, then simply send less. Granted, that can backfire too. They might judge you as being cheap. I guess my point is that if they want to have a negative reaction, they'll find a way. If not, then they'll be happy with whatever you send without creating drama around it, so you can be as generous as you wish.

 

No, I don't see it as a competition at all. I just wouldn't want her to feel bad if I send more than she's planning to send. For all I know, she may send more. I just wanted to know what is the best approach. I'll just send it. After all, it's her granddaughter

Link to post
Share on other sites
I'd just send the gift personally, as it's just that: a gift from you to her. Gifts are just about celebrating someone with a little shine, not under-shining or out-shining others.

 

You of course know the people and dynamic better. Is the ex-MIL sensitive to such matters, prone to weaving narratives of drama? Regardless, I'd say a $200 check, while very nice, is also about as "safe" as you can get to celebrate a college graduate: a hefty enough figure to mark "adulthood," but hardly an extravagant one.

 

As I just wrote to Dancing Fool, I wouldn't want her to feel bad if I send more than she's planning to send. Who knows, she may send more, which is fine with me. My goal is to not possibly hurt her feelings. I just wanted to know weather I should ask her, or just send it. My ex-MIL is a very kind, sweet and non-judgmental person.

Edited by goddess
Link to post
Share on other sites
That's very sensitive and kind of you. I'd lower it personally if you think that you'd offend anyone. If your budget is normally higher or you have had issues in the past where you've flaunted your wealth or are self-conscious about it, keep a low profile and don't look for trouble. In the end this is a small token gift. I'd treat it as such and keep your relationships intact and your gifts in an appropriate range.

 

That you're thinking about this in the first place tells me you're prone to feeling self-conscious about your gifts. I think sometimes it's more about everyone as a whole rather than doing whatever you want.

 

No, I'll just chance it and send it. That's the crux of it all: I've never flaunted my savings. I have no idea how much my ex MIL will send but I would feel bad if I send more than her. OMG, I am so indecisive these days. And a worrier too! LOL

Link to post
Share on other sites
If this is your kinda normal then I would just do it without any conversation with the MIL ....For me it is a lot for a niece and not something our family would do unless you are the parent ..I think $200 is about 150 quid for us and a very very generous gift . But we are all different , so like I say , if it is your norm ....just go for it . I know you are a little sensitive soul so try not to overthink this .

 

I do have a tendency to be generous but not to brag in any way. That's just not the way I operate. I just do it because I like to see people being happy, and I give out of the goodness of my heart.

Link to post
Share on other sites
It's ok. Are you feeling ok about the divorce though? I remember it was hard. You're still getting used to things? I'd take one day at a time. All this is normal and you're just a very thoughtful person.

 

Oh, Rose, you are so kind to ask. Yes, I'm doing SO much better but I still have a long way before I'm healed, if ever. One day at a time. xx

Link to post
Share on other sites

I just wanted to know weather I should ask her, or just send it.

 

If by asking her aren't you more or less letting her know that you are trying not `out shine' her? You somehow need to know her amount so you don't out do her? How do you explain your reason for wanting to know? Isn't that in itself going to embarrass her?

 

I agree with the lesser amount. Problem solved. It's great that the in laws are still good to you but at some point you need to adjust to the imposed distance that comes from being divorced. Give the gift that's fitting to the occasion and fitting to your newly shaping connection with these people.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

You are expecting that your niece is going to tell Grandma what you sent her. She probably will not. Don't worry about what other people do. $100 would probably be a better amount considering this is a niece and not a daughter.

 

If by asking her aren't you more or less letting her know that you are trying not `out shine' her? You somehow need to know her amount so you don't out do her? How do you explain your reason for wanting to know? Isn't that in itself going to embarrass her?

 

I agree with the lesser amount. Problem solved. It's great that the in laws are still good to you but at some point you need to adjust to the imposed distance that comes from being divorced. Give the gift that's fitting to the occasion and fitting to your newly shaping connection with these people.

 

My aunt and uncle divorced when i was a teen. I still considered him my uncle. They were married before i was born and i until the day he died, I did not consider him an ex-uncle. The reason for their divorce were things within their relationship and had nothing to do with anything that would be unsafe to not continue a relationship (he was not a drug dealer, no domestic violence, just regular people who didn't work out). He was around periodcally anyway because they had kids together and she didn't expect us to forget about him.

 

My dad was friends with him before he and my aunt got married. They saw him a lot less after the divorce and even less after the kids became adults, but there wasn't any bad blood that affected me or all the other cousins

Link to post
Share on other sites
I think you're doing great and so very thoughtful. Sarah has a good point too. Happy holidays!

 

Sarah does have a good point. But, remember that my niece's grandmother is my kids' grandmother too. And, my son is graduating on the same day from graduate school. You know what? I will send a check for the amount that I said I would. I just trying to figure out proper etiquette.

 

Happy Holidays to you as well, Rose! xx

Link to post
Share on other sites
Just wanted to add that this is a nice from her ex husbands side.

Dont get me wrong. I have a dozen of them from my ex's side but no matter how you slice it, divorces change things.

 

Yes, divorce does change things. But in this case, we've always been very close. My MIL said she will always regard me as her DIL and my SIL said that I will always be an aunt to her kids, etc. I was so touched by their kindness. I still refer to her as my MIL but I wrote ex MIL for the sake of this thread. Both of my parents have been deceased for years so she is like a mother to me.

 

Of course I don't want to embarrass her. Guess I'l send what I think is nice and she will do the same. I worry too much!

 

I agree, the graduate is a niece from my ex's side but, remember that my kids share the same grandmother.

Link to post
Share on other sites
You are expecting that your niece is going to tell Grandma what you sent her. She probably will not. Don't worry about what other people do. $100 would probably be a better amount considering this is a niece and not a daughter.

 

 

 

My aunt and uncle divorced when i was a teen. I still considered him my uncle. They were married before i was born and i until the day he died, I did not consider him an ex-uncle. The reason for their divorce were things within their relationship and had nothing to do with anything that would be unsafe to not continue a relationship (he was not a drug dealer, no domestic violence, just regular people who didn't work out). He was around periodcally anyway because they had kids together and she didn't expect us to forget about him.

 

My dad was friends with him before he and my aunt got married. They saw him a lot less after the divorce and even less after the kids became adults, but there wasn't any bad blood that affected me or all the other cousins

 

I don't think she will tell her grandmother on purpose but it may come up in conversation. But, for all I know, she may give a bigger gift which is perfectly fine with me. I realise now that I should not worry about what other people do.

 

I definitely still consider her my MIL. My mom died so many years ago and she's been like a mother to me. She's been incredibly kind and supportive towards me since the divorce. Actually, she recently introduced me as her DIL when I went to visit her and my son. I was so touched...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...