Surprise Birthday Party in Jan

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Ms. I, Dec 12, 2014.

  1. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    How do you feel about them? From a person who hates attn on myself & doesn't have friends really, I don't care for them personally.

    My BF's mom called me 2 days ago. (We don't talk really, but not for any negative reason.) She & my BF's sis are throwing a surprise party for my BF & his twin bro...great! :rolleyes: It's in 3 wks. So of course, she wants me to drive & pretend like I'm taking BF somewhere when in fact, we're going to the sis' house where the party will be.

    If any of you have read my past posts, I can't stand my BF's family. They aren't warm, friendly, & sincere, so over the yrs, I've only gone to a handful of get togethers. If I didn't say anything to them at all at the get together, they'd totally ignore me, which is why I don't go in the 1st place. My BF is definitely the black sheep of his family & not like their smug, think they're better then everyone selves.

    Also, these people love having any excuse for a party or get together & w/ a family so lg, there's always someone's b-day, etc. I kind of tried to get out of it & said that him & I were kind of planning things too (since my b-day's 2 wks later), but his mom was so much about "getting her boys together again for their b-day"...like they haven't seen ea other in a long time.

    Just in June, the sis planned a surprise b-day party for their mother. I went & it went about how I expected...a whole night of no one talking to me, except 1 person because we're stuck at the same table together. I reached out to be cordial & put on a smile of course, but I might as well be the wallpaper on the wall. They may think I'm stand-offish because they'll never see how they are towards me. I'll take my camera & mk the best of it.
     
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  3. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    To answer your question, I'm not a huge fan of surprise parties in general. I think they are overused and not always comfortable for all involved. I think there are appropriate situations where a surprise might be warranted, but otherwise, I wouldn't plan one myself.

    Having said that, and I know I am venturing away from your question which you don't care for, but you gave a lot of information there which I feel warrants comment.

    This is his mother. It can be argued that in general, it is advisable to any prospective girlfriend, fiancé, or wife to keep the relationship with the mother-in-law cordial.

    How warm, friendly, and sincere is it of you to only attend a handful of get-togethers over YEARS? What do you expect them to have to say to you? From their viewpoint: son/brother has a girlfriend who won't come to family events and when she does barely talks. Why would they want to open up to you?

    Don't try to get out of it. That's insulting, frankly. Mom wants "her boys" together, so make it happen. Go, put a smile on your face, and make small talk. Even better, call the mom and sister for coffee now and then. Text them every so often-maybe you're shopping for the BF and you text mom to ask her what his favorite color is. Yep, you probably already know, but from her perspective you're using him to get to know her.

    Relationships are not one-sided.
     
  4. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    His mom's OK I guess. But his 3 siblings & their spouses, eh! I've actually been around a very long time. My BF & I have been dating for a long time, actually way BEFORE all the siblings even met their spouses.

    Also, I wasn't going to bring race into this, but I am a diff race from all of them, so that always has something to do with it. People may never say that out loud, but it's true.

    My BF actually isn't that cozy w/ his siblings, but of course they all love ea other. (Meaning it's not like they hate ea other, like siblings in some families.) He says they have an entitled character about them.

    I'm a quiet, reserved person who stays in the background. However, no matter how few get togethers of theirs I go to, I always put on a smile & make the best of it.
     
  5. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Okay, first is ea supposed to be each?

    I think you just need to suck it up, to be honest. It's his birthday and this is what his mom wants to do. It's only for one day and it's not even a whole day. I don't like big groups in general, but I pretty much always go when his family invites me to something. I am an introvert so I am quiet. They don't always include me in converstation, but it's not on purpose. They just get carried away in catching up. I'm not offended. I just sit back and jump in when I can.

    If you and your BF are serious, you will have many, many years with these people. My mom and my dad's sister don't get along. It's been 32 years, and it sucks sometimes for the rest of us. Try and make it work. My aunt was always pretty rude to my grandmother but my grandmother never had a negative word to say my aunt (married into the family). She was such a classy lady and never let it show. She's my example when people aren't super nice to me!
     
  6. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    dgpiaffeteach, yep, in my last sentence of my 1st post, as you can see, I said I'll bring my camera & make the best of it.

    (This isn't to anyone in particular, but) can we all agree that if someone is mean to you & you can tell they don't like you, that you're NOT going to want to be around them? If they AT THE VERY LEAST acknowledge my existence & just said, "Hi, how are you?", then OK (& even that minute small talk isn't the best someone can do), but they don't even do that & I'm dead serious when I say that. I'm totally invisible in their eyes. It's been like that since day 1 XXX years ago. Every time I attend their affairs, I make sure to say a little something to every single person. I'm ALWAYS making the 1st move to reach out to them.

    (Regarding the abbreviation ea & how I used it in my sentence, yes, that stands for each...just my way of somewhat condensing my post. It's like certain other universally-known abbreviations we all use, like ASAP, FYI, RSVP, etc.)
     
  7. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I think that it would be helpful to understand exactly how your boyfriend's family has been mean to you.

    When it comes right down to it, sometimes you have to do things that you don't want to do. This is especially true when it comes to the family of your spouse or significant other. First of all, those people will potentially be in your life forever, so you need to find a way to connect with them. Second, you're being a very bad girlfriend if you are making your boyfriend feel uncomfortable or like he must choose between you and his family. You and his family may not become best friends, but you should at least be able to be cordial and polite, and you should definitely be able to attend family functions with them.
     
  8. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Exactly! Did you read any of my latest post? I said, they can't even say, "Hi, how are you?" and that I make sure to say something to everyone there. What in the world does it take to just say hi, how are you?! A couple of seconds, but they can't even do that & it's been like that since day 1 (yrs ago). I actually started dating him before any of his 3 siblings even met their spouses. I've been nice on every single occasion that I've been in their presence, but they wouldn't dare do the same for some unknown reason. They truly act like t hey despise me, for what reason, who knows. They have no reason.

    And who said I'm making my BF choose? (Technically, when you take your marriage vows, the part that says, "forsaking all others" means the spouse becomes the most important person in that person's life. They're not just talking about past SO's, one's mother or father, etc. But, I know, we're not married yet.)
     
  9. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    I wasn't really talking about their behavior, though. I was talking about yours. You can't control what they do or how they behave, but you can control your own actions and behaviors. My position is that it is in your best interest to put your best foot forward and act like you care about them because it will help you in the long run.

    As for the "forsaking all others" thing, you're right: you're not married. Furthermore, not everyone takes those vows; I didn't. Finally, I don't think that those vows mean that you just stop caring about other people or that you are allowed to treat them badly. You still have to be nice to people even if you're in a relationship with someone else.
     
  10. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Your boyfriend's mom reached out to you. That's a step in the right direction.

    Pay attention to your body language. You said that you're a "quiet/reserved person who stays in the background." Maybe you come across as unapproachable?
     
  11. Chrissteeena

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    I agree w/ YoungTeacherGuy, her reaching out to you is a step in the right direction.

    Also you said that you are always making the first move and saying something to everyone but they wont say hi and ask how you are. Over the years have you ever asked them why? Maybe taking the time to sit down and talk with his mom and other members more one on one & in a non party setting would be helpful.
     
  12. kcjo13

    kcjo13 Phenom

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    So to clarify: When you say "Hi, how are you?", how do they respond? Walk away? Say "fine"? Say something else?
     
  13. scienceteach82

    scienceteach82 Cohort

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    Are you planning to get married?
     
  14. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    That's not exactly reaching out to me because they want to know me better as a person. They need a chauffeur to take the birthday boy to the party. But, OK. I guess they could have totally left me out of it & on the big day just told him to go to his sister's house quickly because there's an emergency.

    No, never asked them, but I do regret not getting to know his mom better throughout the yrs. I'd love to go out to lunch w/ just her one day soon or even spend more time at her place. My BF's taken me there times before & we've talked a little.

    The simplest reply they can, while half paying attention, in which they say, "fine", then they walk away fast because heaven forbid they talk to me a little too long or are seen talking to me!

    Yep & we've talked about wedding plans before. I'm not in my 20s anymore, so I don't need any big wedding. I could almost just go down to city hall & sign the marriage license, but we both want something a little more special. We've talked about having the wedding in Hawaii & then staying longer for the honeymoon. My BF said he'd only pay his mom's way. I'm sure only my parents would be there & I fear that my dad won't live long enough to see that day. (You can read my thread titled Aging Parents.)

    My BF's dad, who he despises, is a huge mess & another whole story. He's one of those types of men...no a total waste of space on this earth who contributes nothing positive & has done numerous horrendous things. My SO definitely doesn't want him & his wife at our wedding (not his real mom). If you had a family member like this, you'd want to almost lie about wedding dates so he won't find out because he's been known to show up uninvited to get togethers. My SO & I have said if he & his wife, even think about showing up at our wedding, they'll be escorted off the premises.
     
  15. Chrissteeena

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    They could have asked someone else to take him. Or called him and just told him to be somewhere for a reason (like you said emergency).

    So call her and ask if she'd like to go get lunch.

    You can't be completely mad at them if they say fine and walk away quickly if there are tons of people at a party. There are members of my own family who don't respond to me when I say something to them at a party of a lot of people. It is busy and it is hectic and to sit down and have a conversation with someone right then and there may not be on the top of their minds. I see people jump from person to person at parties. Yes, I have been to parties where someone sits down and has a full conversation but mostly it is a quick "hello" or "i'm fine" and the person will move on. It doesn't offend me, even if it is someone from my own family (esp. if it is someone who I haven't spoken with in quite a while... )

    To be honest and blunt... if you haven't taken the time over the how ever many years you and your BF have been together to get to know them why should they fully pay attention. I don't think it's them not wanting to be seen talking with you and trying to get a way quickly. I think it's them answering your question and moving on to what they were doing. It almost sounds as if you ask them how they are doing when they are walking by you, instead of going up to them and actually starting that conversation.
     
  16. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Why not ask them specific questions or make remarks?

    For the cousins, I usually ask how school is going. One aunt I ask about her most recent travel or upcoming travel (she's always gone!), the uncles I ask about sports or teaching (two of them teach), the grandmother I compliment her house, I ask the parents about whatever BF has told me about. This year it will be about his sibiling's upcoming trip. I think people are more likely to engage if you ask something personal. When someone asks me how I'm doing, I usually just say fine.
     
  17. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    You are thinking f marrying this guy. Suck it up. View this as an opportunity to find ways to connect with his family.
     
  18. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Yes! This! :2cents:
     
  19. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I can explain & describe things here till I'm blue in the face. No outsider knows how it really is. So, as I said again, I'll take him, try to have a few laughs, take some pics, & make the best of it. This will be a true surprise & I think I'm going to blindfold him from the time we get into the car. Thanks for the comments guys.
     
  20. janlee

    janlee Devotee

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    Wouldn't it be a lovely gesture to tell your BF's mom that you'd be happy to be a part of the celebration. Be the adult in this situation. You've explained numerous times on this board how you despise your BF's family and we all get the picture. This is the season for giving. What a wonderful gift to yourself and later on to your BF when he finds out about the party that your actions of kindness spoke louder than your words you have said about his family and I would think you have many times said them to your boyfriend. If and when you marry this man ( you have said he is your fiancé) and their are children, is this the relationship that you want to occur among all of you? I hope not.
     
  21. Missy

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    Please do not be offended, but my impression is that your opinion of your boyfriend's family likely comes through in your interactions with them.

    You have frequently mentioned you have few friends. Could I gently suggest that maybe a neutral third party could give you some tips on how you come across to people? You have also said your future looks lonely; now is a great time to be proactive and make some changes.

    Good luck at the party!
     
  22. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Yes, guys. Last night, I emailed his mom this exact message:

    "I appreciate you having me be a part of this special day! Your children are blessed to have a mother like you. I'll try to blindfold him too if possible. He'll play along!

    This is just a suggestion of course, but in case you're wondering what to get ___, I know he'd love to have the Prismacolor Premier Soft Core 150 Colored Pencils & I believe Amazon has the best price as well.

    Contact me anytime! :) "
     
  23. ku_alum

    ku_alum Aficionado

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    A kind enough message, but the mother might be put off by the gift suggestion (if she is looking for things to be put off about you for whatever reason ... that could be interpreted as picky or greedy).

    I'm an introvert.
    I can easily go wallflower in social situations.
    I don't enjoy small talk that has no meaning.
    I could easily be labeled socially awkward.
    Large get togethers usually result with me sitting quietly by myself.

    But, I don't assume the people at the gathering don't like me. I know I am sometimes perceived as stuck up or shy, but it's never occurred to me to blame the others in the setting for those perceptions. I take responsibility for the situation. No one else should be required to go out of their way to make a gathering "nicer" for me. That is on me.

    So, often times, I suck it up and go with the knowledge that it probably won't be a terribly rewarding experience for me, but it is a part of my duty/social contract, etc. as a member of whatever group that is gathering.

    I don't blame the others at the gathering for my boring/uncomfortable time. That's just what gatherings are for me as an introvert.

    If you're wanting to foster a relationship with BFs mother for reasons that support your relationship and/or BF, continue to reach out to her for the sake of the relationship. If you're wanting to foster a relationship with BFs mother so you feel less weird at family gatherings, I suggest to just get over it.
     
  24. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    I figured I'd put 1 gift suggestion out there just in case because I can see it now. Soon, I may be asked, do you have any idea what ___ may like? So, that shouldn't be seen as being pushy for a gift.

    You guys are a tough crowd! You must not care being totally ignored like the wallpaper for yrs whenever you go to the SAME family's get togethers! I mean to be totally ignored 1x is bad, but repeatedly throughout yrs by the same grp...not good! :mad:

    You say it's up to us event-goers to make a good time for ourselves. How about the party host(s)/givers SHOULD be gracious, appreciative, & kind enough to have just a little common courtesy, thank each person for coming & make a little small talk at the least to make everyone feel valued. That's how I would be. After all, if people didn't show up, there would be no party at all. If they're too busy to even do that minute amount, they shouldn't be throwing parties.

    How am I or my family going to throw parties every year & we don't even talk to certain people just because we may not know them as well as other party goers & just stay huddled w/ our much closer friends while everyone else fends for themselves?! Yeah, that's a way of making people feel nice & valued! Those ignored people are going to think, "I don't want to go to any more events of theirs...who do they think they are."

    So, once again, like I ALWAYS try to do at all their past affairs I've been ignored at, I'll make the best of it (like his mom's surprise party this past summer, 2 siblings' weddings back in the day, past years' TG & Christmas get togethers, another Christmas dinner at his dad's once which was pretty bad, etc. This is all throughout the course of multiple yrs).

    My ex-BF's family look like Mother Teresa compared to my current BF's family. If I can have my BF w/ my ex's family, everything would be great! They were cordial, included me, were actually NICE to me since day 1 & I dated my last guy for about 4 yrs. My current BF's family's just different. I'm not going to break up w/ him over it. If I had let that affect me, I would have broken up w/ him unteen yrs ago. We'll just hopefully live far enough away when we get married so if there's an event, it will be too far too go all the time. Plus, him & I will be too busy doing our own thing, traveling & whatnot anyway.

    They really don't care about me. My BF likes me coming to join him because I'm his mate.
     
  25. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    How long have you guys been together and how often do they see you? How is their relationship with your BF? Those can all affect how they perceive you as well. Sometimes pleasing in-laws is hard. My parents fled the state after they got married :lol: My dad's mom very much believed no one would ever be good enough for her son. It wasn't until I was born that things changed.

    My BF has a large family. We see them 5-10 times a year at the most (definitely less than once a month), so they have a lot of catching up to do when we see them. I don't blame them for not saying more than a brief hello. Like I posted before, I usually have one or two go to topics. I definitely don't think they hate me though. Once we get married and have a kid, we'll be the center of attention :lol: His family members love babies and they haven't had one in about eight years now! Not suggesting you need to go have a baby, of course ;) But just that things may change. Maybe you could talk to your BF and see if he has any suggestions for making things to more smoothly? Does he usually leave you alone at gatherings or do you typically stay by his side? Do they like to play games? Maybe you could bring cards or something.
     
  26. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    So tonight was the party & it wasn't too bad. We stayed about 3 hrs, but it felt a lot longer than that. I made the best of it & talked a bit to everyone. My BF had a few gag gifts for his bro, so that made everyone laugh.
     
  27. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Was your boyfriend surprised? Did you end up getting him a gift to give to him at the party?
     
  28. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    For someone who doesn't like attention on themselves, you sure do make a lot of really personal threads on this forum.
     
  29. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I hope your boyfriend had fun.
     
  30. Ms. I

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    MrsC & czacza, yes, he loved it & had fun. He really was surprised. I'm good at keeping a secret, so it was easy not to spill the secret. And yes, I brought along the card I made for him, a gift from me (DVD movie) & one from my parents (store gift card).

    lucybelle, yeah well, discussion boards are my chance to really "bust out" so to speak w/ my personality. In person, I'm pretty quiet, the sit-back-&-listen type, reserved, etc.
     
  31. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Glad he had fun. How did he know to bring gifts for his brother?
     
  32. Ms. I

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    Because although he thought we were going to dinner at a restaurant w/ his twin, his sis, & their spouses, we had gifts all ready since people do bring gifts to restaurants for others at times as I'm sure you know. His twin gave him something on a previous day, but my BF didn't care. My BF had a few gifts & cards from me, his parents, & other bro to open too.
     
  33. Ms. I

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    I should also add that there were some brief dull moments when I'd sit watching whatever they had on TV & pretending like I was so interested. (Football was on, which I couldn't care less about.) Glad it's over though!
     
  34. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I was truly hoping you were going to kill 'em with kindness and win them over. :(

    Out of curiosity, how long have the two of you been together?
     
  35. vickilyn

    vickilyn Multitudinous

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    I'm going to dwell on the brief dull moments - short is OK, even with people you love. I don't like football, but you wouldn't know that when I am watching it. I feel that I can be a good sport and join in for a good cause. Besides, not liking it doesn't mean not understanding it - that's an inside joke at my house, since I am known to have an eagle eye and excellent understanding of the rules. This is much different from basketball, where I know as much, but will try to bend calls if it would help the Jayhawks. Fortunately, they don't need my help, so a fun time is had by all. Glad it was a decent time, if not perfect, and sometimes that is as much as we can hope for.
     
  36. Ms. I

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    YoungTeacherGuy, thanks, I appreciate the good wishes! I moved around, sometimes sat outside by the firepit, sat in this spot watching TV, & sitting at the dining table. Again, I can be the kindest most personable person, but if I'm dealing w/ entitled, self-centered people, I can't twist their arms to be nice. We all hugged each other upon arriving & leaving & I made it a point (like always) to talk to everyone. This occasion was better than usual since my BF was one of the guests of honor, so it would look wierd of them to totally ignore the woman on his arm this time.

    I've been w/ him a very, very long time, yes like years. Other than my BF's mom, the only other person who approached me was my BF's dad's 2nd wife, rather than the usual me always making the move to approach them. Perhaps she had an alterior motive, such as trying to show her husband's ex-wife (my BF's mother) how "chummy" her & I are, which we definitely are not. I just roll w/ the punches like always.
     
  37. Ms. I

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    Thanks lynettstoy for your comments.
     

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