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happysmileylady

Family Drama...blah....probably JAWM

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As many of you likely know, my girls are in scouts, they sold GS cookies.

The girls called all our family to ask about cookies.  This includes my DH's sister.  And DH's sister (well, her spouse,) ordered 1 whole case of thin mints, plus a box of the smores..............from EACH girl.  All together, that worked out to $106.  My girls were happy to mark down that they wanted so many.  And really it's probably not really a good idea to say to someone "Um, are you sure that you should order so many?"  

Well, yeah, at $106 worth of cookies, I knew this was going to be an issue for DH's sister.  I was not wrong. 

Last weekend, DD23 was here for a night.  She lives in the same area as SIL, so we all called SIL on speaker phone to arrange between us and her and DD23 to have DD bring the cookies back with her and then they could meet up so DD could give them the cookies.  As far as paying for them, I told SIL I needed to get the money turned in sooner rather than later, so we would just make the payment and that she could mail a check directly to us.  Ok, great, everyone's in agreement.  

An hour later, SIL calls back with all kinds of reasons they can't mail us a check until next week.  They have X bill coming up, and have had Y problem with their finances, etc etc etc.  Now, this is where I say, SIL and her spouse have a lot of financial problems, all of which are their own creation.  I could list all the issues, but it would be a long and boring list.  Basically, they spend more than they make, are very materialistic, and I knew that $106 worth of cookies would be a problem for all of those reasons and more.  SO, we knew as soon as she stated saying they had X bill and Y problem....that it's likely we won't see that money.  *sigh.*

Ok, whatever....the money has to be in by the deadline, so we have to pay it anyway.  We *could* withhold the cookies from them, but honestly............blah.  Keeping 26 boxes of cookies safe from kids, for whoever knows how long, if ever, more crap to deal with in the relationship between DH and his sister....blah.  DH and I agree that we will just pay the money, we have it, send the cookies with DD23 as agreed, and if SIL's check ever shows up, then we put it back in the account, but we don't expect it.  DH is upset about the whole thing, frustrated, etc, but trying to keep the cookies wouldn't have changed that.

And then, DD23 calls last night.  She's a bit frustrated, not sure what to do.  Because she called SIL (so, her aunt) to confirm the discussed date and time.  And SIL is like "well, actually, we were hoping to take you out to dinner, your uncle wants to go to XYZ, have you been there?"  DD didn't know what to do so she agreed to dinner.  The reason she wasn't sure is that the cost of this dinner at this place will be more than the cost of these cookies.  She could pay for her own, but they never let her pay.  So now she feels like she's stuck in this weird position, knowing that the people taking her to dinner owe her parents less than the cost of the dinner, but then if she declines, SIL will take it really personal and will want to know what she did wrong, etc etc etc.  

 

*sigh*

Maybe they will surprise us.  Maybe they will send the check.  And maybe it won't even bounce when they do.

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I think probably let it go this time, but never, ever ask them for money in the future ?

Because it's not worth the inevitable hassle.

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I’m sorry😕 I’d try and sell the cookies. Yes, you still have to pay the money but maybe you can resell😊

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2 minutes ago, StellaM said:

I think probably let it go this time, but never, ever ask them for money in the future ?

Because it's not worth the inevitable hassle.

This is where I am on the whole thing.  We just won't ask them about any sort of fundraising thing or any other thing that the kids do that might have any relation to money.  

DH is in agreement, but is still upset, frustrated, embarrassed.  His sister is all he has left of his FOO.  His parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc, have all passed away.  And that adds another dimension to his frustration and such.  

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6 minutes ago, alisoncooks said:

Geez, they wouldn't be getting those cookies. I pay, I eats. Especially cookies. 

Lol.  I could dig my heels in.  And DH probably wouldn't even argue.  But, it wouldn't really solve anything.  We would still be out the money, and he would still but upset and frustrated.  And it could still put DD23 in the middle with SIL calling and saying things like "hey, next time you go out to your parents, can you bring our cookies back?"

 

Plus aside from all that....I am just tired of looking at cookies lol.  I am finalizing DD10's entire troop's cookie program this next week, and for the first time in my life, I might be feeling a sense of relief being DONE...DONE with cookies lol

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10 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

This is where I am on the whole thing.  We just won't ask them about any sort of fundraising thing or any other thing that the kids do that might have any relation to money.  

DH is in agreement, but is still upset, frustrated, embarrassed.  His sister is all he has left of his FOO.  His parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc, have all passed away.  And that adds another dimension to his frustration and such.  

 

Oh, it's reallly frustrating! 

Grown adults should know how to manage their own money, and ya know, buy only what they can afford to honor. 

And the thing with taking dd out to dinner - that would have me tearing my hair out with frustration as well! 

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2 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Lol.  I could dig my heels in.  And DH probably wouldn't even argue.  But, it wouldn't really solve anything.  We would still be out the money, and he would still but upset and frustrated.  And it could still put DD23 in the middle with SIL calling and saying things like "hey, next time you go out to your parents, can you bring our cookies back?"

I would let it go but keep the cookies. If SIL asks, say that you keep all unpaid for cookies and try to recoup the money by selling them to someone else. She should not be putting your DD in the middle if the cookies are NOT PAID FOR. That's crazy.

So, her spouse ordered the cookies and no one asked if it was too much...did they at least tell the spouse how much they total cost was? Just curious--maybe spouse has zero idea what GS cookies cost, lol!

In the future, I would adopt a "no money up front; no order placed" policy for everyone. We do that with anything we sell.

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So the dinner total would cost more than the $106 they owe you. I have spendthrift relatives and would tell my kids or only sibling to just let the relative treat. Your SIL and spouse would have gone there for dinner anyway so the extra expense so only paying for your daughter (more than 1/3 what they owe you).

Do you know why your SIL’s spouse ordered so many cookies? If I ordered that many, it would be likely for my kids outsourced class end of year party (end May) contribution or contribution to my husband’s dept snacks pile (which is separate from employer provided fruits and snacks).

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15 minutes ago, kbutton said:

I would let it go but keep the cookies. If SIL asks, say that you keep all unpaid for cookies and try to recoup the money by selling them to someone else. She should not be putting your DD in the middle if the cookies are NOT PAID FOR. That's crazy.

So, her spouse ordered the cookies and no one asked if it was too much...did they at least tell the spouse how much they total cost was? Just curious--maybe spouse has zero idea what GS cookies cost, lol!

In the future, I would adopt a "no money up front; no order placed" policy for everyone. We do that with anything we sell.

When we called SIL, I put the phone on speaker phone.  This is only the second time that DD10 has participated in ANY fundraising thing, and the first time ever for DD8 (plus DD8 has severe speech and language issues, so I have to "translate" )So I participated in the whole phone call.  We called SIL because she is the phone number I have, neither I no DH have BIL's number.  On the phone call, SIL was talking to us and her spouse at the same time.  I made sure that EACH girl separately told SIL that the total they ordered from her was $53, and then once both girls were finished I reiterated that it was $106 worth all together.  We spoke with SIL directly, who was talking to her spouse through the entire conversation.  Her spouse is the one who wanted all the cookies and she does pretty much whatever he wants.  

 

Which, is really the heart of the issue.  BIL wanted cookies.  He told SIL to order them.  She did, then he left it to her to figure out how to pay for it, because he never realizes that stuff you *buy* actually has to be *paid* for.  

Edited by happysmileylady
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7 minutes ago, Arcadia said:

So the dinner total would cost more than the $106 they owe you. I have spendthrift relatives and would tell my kids or only sibling to just let the relative treat. Your SIL and spouse would have gone there for dinner anyway so the extra expense so only paying for your daughter (more than 1/3 what they owe you).

Do you know why your SIL’s spouse ordered so many cookies? If I ordered that many, it would be likely for my kids outsourced class end of year party (end May) contribution or contribution to my husband’s dept snacks pile (which is separate from employer provided fruits and snacks).

He wanted them.  That's the only reason.  He buys what he wants, when he wants it.  He had already told us, like back in October, that he was excited that both girls were going to be selling cookies.  I just didn't expect them to order so many.............but looking back I probably should have expected it. 

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3 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Which, is really the heart of the issue.  BIL wanted cookies.  He told SIL to order them.  She did, then he left it to her to figure out how to pay for it, because he never realize that stuff you *buy* actually has to be *paid* for.  

If you are worried about the relationship to SIL because there isn't much family left, I would really, really let this go. She probably feels stuck in the middle. This doesn't sound like a promising thing with regard to her marriage. Ugh. You are probably going to be witness to worse than this if this is normal. You might have to find ways to completely separate this aspect of her life from how you support and relate to her if at all possible, not just at cookie time.

I would seriously consider trying to find ways for your BIL to NOT find out about cookies next year ("oops, we got the information at the last minute, but we ordered you one box from each girl as a treat..." and give them as a gift). 

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I just wish I could fix it for DH.  He feels so bad about the whole thing, and when he looks at how my family dealt with it, he's just like "why, why can't you just pay it?" 

 

blah.  

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3 minutes ago, kbutton said:

If you are worried about the relationship to SIL because there isn't much family left, I would really, really let this go. She probably feels stuck in the middle. This doesn't sound like a promising thing with regard to her marriage. Ugh. You are probably going to be witness to worse than this if this is normal. You might have to find ways to completely separate this aspect of her life from how you support and relate to her if at all possible, not just at cookie time.

I would seriously consider trying to find ways for your BIL to NOT find out about cookies next year ("oops, we got the information at the last minute, but we ordered you one box from each girl as a treat..." and give them as a gift). 

I am sure she feels stuck in the middle.  She has had so much support to make it so she isn't stuck in the middle..........and won't take it.   And now that FIL has passed as well, we can't give any more support, as we have 3 kids at home, plus an adult kid....so she's probably feeling even more stuck.  And yes, there's is probably worse than this in the future, which, really is another thing we think about in the future, and DH specifically.  Because we can't be a "landing place" the way FIL was.  

Which again, is a whole additional factor to DH's frustration.

 

 

 

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Sorry. Adults really should know how to budget. But I am amazed at the fact so many adults can't budget. 

 

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4 minutes ago, lulalu said:

Sorry. Adults really should know how to budget. But I am amazed at the fact so many adults can't budget. 

 

We have offered help to her in that area in the past.  The offers were given lip service with no real action so, we quit offering.  

So, just..yeah.  Blah!

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1 hour ago, happysmileylady said:

This is where I am on the whole thing.  We just won't ask them about any sort of fundraising thing or any other thing that the kids do that might have any relation to money.  

DH is in agreement, but is still upset, frustrated, embarrassed.  His sister is all he has left of his FOO.  His parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc, have all passed away.  And that adds another dimension to his frustration and such.  

I get this whole post, so completely.  I have a sibling like this.  So much weirdness about money, undependable to meet financial obligations, but then extravagant in some weird ways. 

Eat the cost (if not the cookies) this time, and don't do it again.  Tell your daughter she's got the right idea. Seriously, she sounds like a smart one and sweet too.  

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I'd not send the cookies unless I saw the money. I know you want this to be "done" -- but that wouldn't be enough motivation for me to send DD23 to deliver unpaid cookies and watch them shell out for dining out with her in the meantime. If they want to dine out, I don't much care, but I care enough not to give them a hundred dollars of free cookies at my own expense on the exact same occasion. I guess I'm petty that way.

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1 hour ago, StellaM said:

I think probably let it go this time, but never, ever ask them for money in the future ?

Because it's not worth the inevitable hassle.

Yeah this. They’re probably charging the dinner out and don’t have actual cash to pay you. 

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I wouldn't advise my kids to call family members with a history of financial problems for 2 reasons:
1. If they're working to correct their financial situation they don't need to be tempted with non-essentials like GS cookies, they need free tasty beans and rice recipes. Never rely on unreliable people for anything. Always arrange things so they when they flake on you you're not out anything.
2. The most accurate predictor of future behavior is past behavior, so I wouldn't want to risk being stuck in this kind of difficult family dynamic situation over money. Not worth it.

As to your husband being frustrated and embarrassed, he needs to emotionally separate from this like he would any other peer.  He is responsible for his own actions, not the actions of his sibling. We only need to be embarrassed by our own behavior, we can have pity and empathy for someone else's.   Don't call them about buying cookies anymore and don't emotionally invest in how other adults spend their money anymore.

If SIL or her spouse asks your daughter about delivering cookies, have daughter say, "Oh yeah, that reminds me, dad said he wants to talk to you about that, you should call him now." (It's dad's sibling, let dad handle it.) Have him simply say that they can only be delivered if paid for.  Have him reassure his sister that if she isn't able to pay for them now there are plenty of people out there who looooooove GS cookies who will buy them instead. Then post on social media that locals are in luck because you still have cookies on hand for sale and don't go into why. Or sell them outside the grocery store or at Joanne's where I bought my $60 worth of cookies, cash in hand, on the spot without ordering them beforehand. If you're in the SE greater Raleigh area, message me which kind of cookies you have.

Daughter can go or not go to dinner based on whether or not she genuinely wants to go to dinner, but don't make it about cookies or how someone else spends their money  increases their debt. If they want to foolishly put that kind of thing on a credit card or divert cash for essentials to eating out in their financial situation, it's none of your business. Continue to maintain the relationship while avoiding any activities that involve payment from them to you.

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29 minutes ago, marbel said:

I get this whole post, so completely.  I have a sibling like this.  So much weirdness about money, undependable to meet financial obligations, but then extravagant in some weird ways. 

Eat the cost (if not the cookies) this time, and don't do it again.  Tell your daughter she's got the right idea. Seriously, she sounds like a smart one and sweet too.  

Yes, weirdness.  A great all encompassing word.

And yes, DD23 is a smart one.  In fact, she could actually afford to pay for both the cookies AND the dinner out, for all 3 of them, if she were so inclined while also still covering all her regular bills, and even medical things relating to her asthma and such.   She's a very smart one.  

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4 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

I wouldn't advise my kids to call family members with a history of financial problems for 2 reasons:
1. If they're working to correct their financial situation they don't need to be tempted with non-essentials like GS cookies, they need free tasty beans and rice recipes. Never rely on unreliable people for anything. Always arrange things so they when they flake on you you're not out anything.
2. The most accurate predictor of future behavior is past behavior, so I wouldn't want to risk being stuck in this kind of difficult family dynamic situation over money. Not worth it.

As to your husband being frustrated and embarrassed, he needs to emotionally separate from this like he would any other peer.  He is responsible for his own actions, not the actions of his sibling. We only need to be embarrassed by our own behavior, we can have pity and empathy for someone else's.   Don't call them about buying cookies anymore and don't emotionally invest in how other adults spend their money anymore.

If SIL or her spouse asks your daughter about delivering cookies, have daughter say, "Oh yeah, that reminds me, dad said he wants to talk to you about that, you should call him now." (It's dad's sibling, let dad handle it.) Have him simply say that they can only be delivered if paid for.  Have him reassure his sister that if she isn't able to pay for them now there are plenty of people out there who looooooove GS cookies who will buy them instead. Then post on social media that locals are in luck because you still have cookies on hand for sale and don't go into why. Or sell them outside the grocery store or at Joanne's where I bought my $60 worth of cookies, cash in hand, on the spot without ordering them beforehand. If you're in the SE greater Raleigh area, message me which kind of cookies you have.

Daughter can go or not go to dinner based on whether or not she genuinely wants to go to dinner, but don't make it about cookies or how someone else spends their money  increases their debt. If they want to foolishly put that kind of thing on a credit card or divert cash for essentials to eating out in their financial situation, it's none of your business. Continue to maintain the relationship while avoiding any activities that involve payment from them to you.

Yeah, my kids won't call in the future.  I suppose there was this element of ....even though I know you have acted like this in the past, surely not with your own nieces?    Obviously, yes.

And yes, DH is working to emotionally separate.  Which is why we won't call and won't be offering more help.  

DD23 already has the cookies at her apartment.  I told her just to give them to SIL.  I really just want to remove her from the middle of the whole thing.  She won't be back here until like Easter. 

We are in Ohio, if anyone in Ohio wants some cookies, DD10's troop has cookies to get rid of, they are sitting in my living room lol.  Trefoils, Smiles, Smores lol.  But my troop parents are done with booths lol.

 

DD23 just felt weird because her aunt was spending money (going into debt) on *her* while owning money to us.  I did tell her not to worry about it and that it's on them and not her. Don't worry about what they have to pay elsewhere.  

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This is very much like something one of my siblings would do.  I am pretty sure Sibling A still owes Sibling B money from a joint Christmas gift for our father and will never see a penny of it.  There is always, always money available for utter nonsense, yet never money to pay back personal loans and somehow we're the jerky ones for expecting Sibling A to honor their commitments.

The only way to win this game is to not play.  It's super frustrating because you think "Maybe this time it will be different!" and it never is.  All you can do is make a mental note to never, ever let them owe you money again.  If they ask about cookies next year, tell them the troop has a new policy that all orders must be paid for up-front, so you'd be happy to place an order for the cookies after they send you the money via Paypal or an old fashioned money order.    

 

ETA :  Try not to take your SIL's actions personally.  It's not ok what she's doing and it feels super disrespectful, but if she's anything like my sibling, it has absolutely nothing to do with how she feels about any of you.  It's a poor-personal-boundaries type of problem. 

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so, let me get this straight

she or her dh ordered $106 worth of cookies.  I'm sorry, I'm not understanding if that was confirmed?

then when they were delivered - she made up excuses why she couldn't pay for them.   um, why were they given to her if she hadn't paid for them?  she sounds flighty.

just trying to understand.

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5 minutes ago, gardenmom5 said:

so, let me get this straight

she or her dh ordered $106 worth of cookies.  I'm sorry, I'm not understanding if that was confirmed?

then when they were delivered - she made up excuses why she couldn't pay for them.   um, why were they given to her if she hadn't paid for them?  she sounds flighty.

just trying to understand.

You understand correctly.  We contacted SIL.  She conversed with her spouse, while we were discussing with her.  So yes, he knew, but yes, our contact was with her.

 

They were given to her because....not worth the additional drama of NOT giving them to her.  

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If I ordered something from a child, I would take food out of my own mouth before I did not pay what I owed to a child.  Even if I screwed up, who would screw over an order from a little kid and family member?  

I'm so sorry, that's just wrong.  Did they know in the back of their minds that you would cover it so it would get paid anyway?  I would be tempted to tell them you won't cover it.

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27 minutes ago, MissLemon said:

This is very much like something one of my siblings would do.  I am pretty sure Sibling A still owes Sibling B money from a joint Christmas gift for our father and will never see a penny of it.  There is always, always money available for utter nonsense, yet never money to pay back personal loans and somehow we're the jerky ones for expecting Sibling A to honor their commitments.

The only way to win this game is to not play.  It's super frustrating because you think "Maybe this time it will be different!" and it never is.  All you can do is make a mental note to never, ever let them owe you money again.  If they ask about cookies next year, tell them the troop has a new policy that all orders must be paid for up-front, so you'd be happy to place an order for the cookies after they send you the money via Paypal or an old fashioned money order.    

Yep, no playing no more.  If they ask, pay up front or no cookies.  But we won't ask, they will have to.  And we won't ask about future things......kid has a play that people need to buy tickets to?  "Hey, DD did great at her play, you want pics?"  Kid is participating in a state competition?"  Hey, if you want to come, here's the details to book."  

 

I just wish it didn't have to be that way.  

 

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4 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

You understand correctly.  We contacted SIL.  She conversed with her spouse, while we were discussing with her.  So yes, he knew, but yes, our contact was with her.

 

They were given to her because....not worth the additional drama of NOT giving them to her.  

 

Yes, and that’s exactly what manipulators count on.

She is stealing money from your family. Your children are seeing her walk all over you.

There is no way I would give her the cookies. If I was going to be paying for them, I would give them to my kids to sell and let them keep the proceeds.

I honestly don’t understand why you would even consider giving the cookies to such a selfish, entitled jerk who has no problem stealing from your dds.

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5 minutes ago, goldberry said:

If I ordered something from a child, I would take food out of my own mouth before I did not pay what I owed to a child.  Even if I screwed up, who would screw over an order from a little kid and family member?  

I'm so sorry, that's just wrong.  Did they know in the back of their minds that you would cover it so it would get paid anyway?  I would be tempted to tell them you won't cover it.

 

I agree completely. I would be absolutely livid if a family member pulled a stunt like that on my child, and not only would I would not let it go, but that family member would be told in no uncertain terms what I thought of her for doing such a rotten thing.

And I am floored by the idea that she still expects to receive the cookies! 

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15 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

You understand correctly.  We contacted SIL.  She conversed with her spouse, while we were discussing with her.  So yes, he knew, but yes, our contact was with her.

 

They were given to her because....not worth the additional drama of NOT giving them to her.  

giving them to her means she'll do it again. and if she doesn't cough up the money - who is going to pay for it?  you?  the GS troop?

I would urge never even ask her for anything again.  she's not dependable.   

8 minutes ago, Catwoman said:

 

Yes, and that’s exactly what manipulators count on.

She is stealing money from your family. Your children are seeing her walk all over you.

There is no way I would give her the cookies. If I was going to be paying for them, I would give them to my kids to sell and let them keep the proceeds.

I honestly don’t understand why you would even consider giving the cookies to such a selfish, entitled jerk who has no problem stealing from your dds.

this.  avoiding drama is where passing the bean dip comes in.  we needed to deliver them, you didn't have the money - they needed to be sold (for actual money).  too bad, so sad.  rinse repeat.

"avoiding drama" like this - leads to more drama.

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2 minutes ago, gardenmom5 said:

giving them to her means she'll do it again. and if she doesn't cough up the money - who is going to pay for it?  you?  the GS troop?

I would urge never even ask her for anything again.  she's not dependable.   

this.  avoiding drama is where passing the bean dip comes in.  we needed to deliver them, you didn't have the money - they needed to be sold (for actual money).  too bad, so sad.  rinse repeat.

"avoiding drama" like this - leads to more drama.

Fool me once, shame on you.  Fool me twice, shame on me.

 

It won't happen again.  

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I wouldn't deliver the cookies either. When they said they couldn't pay, I would explain that dds have to turn in the $106, so they will be selling them locally to pay their bill (a subtle explanation that bills and commitments must be honored). Incidentally, it's really easy to sell cookies you have on your person. My dd would order extra thin mints and samoas and carry them around in a box with a sign and people would come up to her to buy them.

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OP, is there a history of your spouse's FOO having a hard time setting and enforcing boundaries with each other?  It seems like there might be a family culture norm of overstepping and not enforcing that isn't going to improve by ignoring the problem.

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Honestly, in terms of a history in the family, it's hard to say.  DH's FOO is small.  He has a single sister, who has no kids.  He has one uncle on his dad's side, who also has not kids, so no cousins there.  Every single person on his mom's side passed away before I met him, I never knew a single one of them.  His mom passed away like 6 or 7 yrs ago.  

I can say that his dad tended to "baby" his sister, for lack of a better term.  Which means that yes, it's likely that DH doesn't quite know how to enforce bounderies with his sister.  And with FIL passed....leaving a specific "direction" to not become estranged like FIL and his brother did....................*sigh.*  So much drama.  I am so not used to this within my own FOO.  The little experience I do have is easy to cut off because the relationship just isn't as close.  

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3 hours ago, StellaM said:

I think probably let it go this time, but never, ever ask them for money in the future ?

Because it's not worth the inevitable hassle.

Definitely this.  I'd just skip their number next year.

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Maybe they have a gift certificate to that expensive restaurant.

As for the cookies, I agree with just paying and letting it go.  Think of it as a gift you are happy to give them.

As for selling unnecessary things to poor relations - I never ever do it.  It will always cause a strain one way or another.  I don't want them to feel obligated to give up something else so my kids can get some small goody for saying they sold some cookies.

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5 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

Honestly, in terms of a history in the family, it's hard to say.  DH's FOO is small.  He has a single sister, who has no kids.  He has one uncle on his dad's side, who also has not kids, so no cousins there.  Every single person on his mom's side passed away before I met him, I never knew a single one of them.  His mom passed away like 6 or 7 yrs ago.  

I can say that his dad tended to "baby" his sister, for lack of a better term.  Which means that yes, it's likely that DH doesn't quite know how to enforce bounderies with his sister.  And with FIL passed....leaving a specific "direction" to not become estranged like FIL and his brother did....................*sigh.*  So much drama.  I am so not used to this within my own FOO.  The little experience I do have is easy to cut off because the relationship just isn't as close.  

 

But this isn’t about your dh and his sister. This is about your children and their aunt, and you are involved because you were there when your dds made the arrangement for their aunt to purchase the cookies. So you are well within your rights to tell SIL that your dds can’t  afford to pay for the cookies she ordered, so your kids will just go ahead and sell them around your neighborhood to get their money back. 

And if SIL doesn’t like that, you can flatly explain that you’re teaching your dds about running a business, and part of running a business is that they get paid for what they sell and they don’t give their merchandise away for free. 

Honestly, I can’t imagine why you would even think of letting her take such advantage of your daughters, and for that matter, your dh should be chomping at the bit to tell his sister off for pulling this sneaky, rotten stunt on his children. His sister’s feelings shouldn’t be his priority. His daughters should be the priority, and he should be absolutely disgusted with his sister right now because her irresponsible and manipulative behavior is completely unacceptable.

Edited by Catwoman
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11 hours ago, Ali in OR said:

I wouldn't deliver the cookies either. When they said they couldn't pay, I would explain that dds have to turn in the $106, so they will be selling them locally to pay their bill (a subtle explanation that bills and commitments must be honored). Incidentally, it's really easy to sell cookies you have on your person. My dd would order extra thin mints and samoas and carry them around in a box with a sign and people would come up to her to buy them.

This sounds great, but my experience with a person very much like OP's SIL, subtle explanations are pointless.  The person trying to give the explanation just ends up frustrated because their words go nowhere and do nothing.   

There are many lessons to be had by OP's kids here, and it's OK if they see their parents giving grace to their aunt (by paying for the cookies) one time.  It doesn't mean that they'll never understand how businesses work. 

(I also think that OP's kids could easily sell the cookies if that's how she wants to do it.)

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14 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

 

 

Which, is really the heart of the issue.  BIL wanted cookies.  He told SIL to order them.  She did, then he left it to her to figure out how to pay for it, because he never realizes that stuff you *buy* actually has to be *paid* for.  

Oh, is she married to my ex? *shudders* He would do the same thing, to show how generous he is, but I'd be in the background (or afterward) reminding him we couldn't afford whatever someone was selling. She might be a willing participant in his financial chaos or she might simply be tired of fighting about it. Maybe she's a willing participant, that's a lot of cookies which are hard to resist. If she's just caught up in his chaos, she will feel guilty every time she eats one. 

Since she already has the cookies, I would send a reminder, maybe a hand written note by your child, then I'd let it go. I might have a private conversation something about appreciating their support, but that you would have been happy to have them order 3-4 boxes and pay for them over you getting stuck with a bill for over $100. 

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That's frustrating - I'd agree even if you didn't ask for a JAWM. At this point it seems like the choice is a rift between the families or your family just eat (ha ha) the cost of the cookies. I vote for the latter. Just don't even bring it up next year at cookie time or if your girls are involved with any other fundraisers. Or, as another poster suggested just hold one or two boxes aside for them. And tell your older dd to just go to dinner with them and let it go. Short of causing more family drama there isn't anything else you (and dd23) can do.

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15 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

He wanted them.  That's the only reason.  He buys what he wants, when he wants it.  He had already told us, like back in October, that he was excited that both girls were going to be selling cookies.  I just didn't expect them to order so many.............but looking back I probably should have expected it. 

I wouldn't say anything about it at all next year. If they so much as hint about wanting to order again, I'd look them in the eye and tell them flat-out we couldn't afford to pay for cookies other people order and then refuse to pay for, that my policy was strictly cash-with-order, and that there were absolutely no exceptions. What they did was pretty lousy.

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I may be totally off, but this sort of reminds me of my first interaction with SIL (DH's sister). She just had to take us out for a "fancy dinner." So she took us to Red Lobster, ordered expensive food, and then when it was time to pay, needed DH to cover it. (At the time, DH was a grad student, cleaning toilets on campus to pay tuition and save money for our honeymoon. We would NEVER have chosen to eat out like that.) We continually heard, "I'm so embarrassed, I forgot my wallet, I'll pay you back ASAP!"  Did she ever pay DH back? Nope. Did she intend to? I doubt it. And the kicker - she had DH leave a verrrry generous tip. 

I have no problem with people who don't have their mess together. I do have a problem when that mess spills over into my life. 

(ETA: and I mean "messes" of one's willful making. I am sympathetic toward life's other "messes.")

Edited by alisoncooks
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I would do the exact same thing- give her the cookies, pay for it myself and never plan on being reimbursed.  Lesson learned, don't call them next time.  And tell older DD to enjoy the meal and not think about the money.  Some people are just this way, no way you can help them.  

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7 hours ago, Lady Florida. said:

That's frustrating - I'd agree even if you didn't ask for a JAWM. At this point it seems like the choice is a rift between the families or your family just eat (ha ha) the cost of the cookies. I vote for the latter. Just don't even bring it up next year at cookie time or if your girls are involved with any other fundraisers. Or, as another poster suggested just hold one or two boxes aside for them. And tell your older dd to just go to dinner with them and let it go. Short of causing more family drama there isn't anything else you (and dd23) can do.

Exactly.  Some hills are not worth dying on. 

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