One of my students called just now…while I’m waiting for a phone call to come in from long and far away, so I made the call very short. Seems her mom-in-law is throwing a baby shower for wife of brother-in-law who is growing a new human inside her womb. So student is “cordially invited” to appear, expensive gift in hand, of course. The slight is, don’t bring kids. You can leave them at “Unknown DayCare Down the Road.” (Really? Kids are all excited about having a new cousin and even made presents.) Oh, and, by the way, your own mom is not invited, which, of course, own mom already figured out when she didn’t get an invitation, but got to hear about the event. Hurt Mom. 🙁
What to do?
Send the present via USPS or UPS. Write a note, explaining things to sis-in-law — that mom-in-law/control freak/bitch (a woman who thinks nothing of walking into a house and appropriating whatever she desires without even so much a by your leave) has made it much too difficult to attend since both kids and Grandma have been hurt deeply by being spurned invitation.
Student didn’t want to go anyway, and was doing it for husband. Ah, no. Wrong reason.
Secret: Do what’s right for you, not what’s “seemly,” which, of course, only perpetuates more demands and expectations of doing “seemly.” And don’t just be silent here. Say something, honestly (and as politely as you can without sacrificing truth). Never mind PC. Never mind THEIR feelings. How about everybody else’s feelings? How about yours? Be honest…politely, of course, which means “Tell them the pertinent truth they need to hear.” Nothing worse than laying falseness over ugliness. Just call it ugly in a way that gets your point across without reaming them a new rectal orifice, then be on your way.