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19 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

would you feel hurt if your other siblings did something that wasn't little kid friendly, and didn't invite you and your kids?

DH's older sister and I are planning a trip for our two families that isn't baby friendly.  We are thinking we might invite DH's younger brother and his wife, who don't have kids, but we do't want to invite the sister wth the baby because there's just no way a baby wouldn't radically change the trip, and because we know we'll end up watching and taking care of her older kids.

I'm worried the sister with the baby would be hurt to be left out if everyone else is going, but my older SIL says I'm nuts.  

What do you all think?  If you had a baby, and all your siblings planned a not-baby-friendly trip without you, would your feelings be hurt?

Yes.  

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4 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

So, how would you want your siblings to handle it?

 

I would invite all the siblings and just deal. I was recently the only sibling left out of something. It really hurt and because I told them it hurt me they haven’t spoken to me in months. It’s caused a lot of issues. 

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So, a family that has undergone horrific trauma in the past year should give up a trip that’s pretty much once in their children’s childhoods opportunity to avoid hurting the feelings of family with baby who they spent all year cooking for their kids and caring for their kids?  
 

Or they sacrifice the trip they want to please the family that gets everything already or to change the trip so rather than taking important time to heal and bond as a family they will babysit for these other kids instead, just in a different location?

Sometimes some things aren’t appropriate for infants. 

Edited by Terabith
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27 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

would you feel hurt if your other siblings did something that wasn't little kid friendly, and didn't invite you and your kids?

DH's older sister and I are planning a trip for our two families that isn't baby friendly.  We are thinking we might invite DH's younger brother and his wife, who don't have kids, but we do't want to invite the sister wth the baby because there's just no way a baby wouldn't radically change the trip, and because we know we'll end up watching and taking care of her older kids.

I'm worried the sister with the baby would be hurt to be left out if everyone else is going, but my older SIL says I'm nuts.  

What do you all think?  If you had a baby, and all your siblings planned a not-baby-friendly trip without you, would your feelings be hurt?

Absolutely. Yes

 

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3 minutes ago, Terabith said:

So, a family that has undergone horrific trauma in the past year should give up a trip that’s pretty much once in their children’s childhoods opportunity to avoid hurting the feelings of family with baby who they spent all year cooking for their kids and caring for their kids?  
 

Or they sacrifice the trip they want to please the family that gets everything already or to change the trip so rather than taking important time to heal and bond as a family they will babysit for these other kids instead, just in a different location?

Sometimes some things aren’t appropriate for infants. 

If the family goes on their own -- no feelings hurt. If they invite all siblings and the one with little kids decides they can't participate, no hurt feelings.

If they invite everyone but that family, no way to avoid hurt feelings.

 

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4 minutes ago, Terabith said:

So, a family that has undergone horrific trauma in the past year should give up a trip that’s pretty much once in their children’s childhoods opportunity to avoid hurting the feelings of family with baby who they spent all year cooking for their kids and caring for their kids?  
 

Or they sacrifice the trip they want to please the family that gets everything already or to change the trip so rather than taking important time to heal and bond as a family they will babysit for these other kids instead, just in a different location?

Sometimes some things aren’t appropriate for infants. 

Or they plan the trip with the one other family and don’t invite the third sibling and spouse.  Two families taking a trip together is different than “we invited everybody except you.”

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I will be the odd one out and say that I wouldn't be hurt. My DH's siblings have adult kids and we are the only ones having young kids - so, for us, it works the other way around - I don't want to be on a trip with them where I am holding them back from doing stuff that they like (one nephew is obsessed with wine tasting, the niece likes spas etc). I also don't want to do the things that they do with their adult kids but would love to take my own kids to museums, Disneyland, Legoland etc, so I politely refuse and tell them to have a good time without me. Sometimes my DH goes along with them, but I never do. There are no hurt feelings on either side because we are all at different stages of our lives and cannot do the same things and that is OK.

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I think it depends on the family dynamics.  I used to be that youngest sibling and the only one with young children.  Sometimes my two older siblings and their kids would go on trips together.  It was fine by me and never caused any ill-will.  I mean, I knew they weren't intentionally leaving us out, and that the trip suited their kids and not mine.  I would never have expected them to only take trips that my youngest children could also be part of.  I was happy for them.  Our families have done a lot of things together over the years, and different siblings' families sometimes mix and match for different events. 

Does she seem like the type who would be hurt?  I'd probably just be up front about it with her and explain your thoughts and tentative plan.

 

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Yes. She may have hurt feelings. Other people may feel relieved to not have to go with an infant in tow. It really depends on the person. 

Is there a way to include her and the older kids, for at least part of the trip? If you can't invite her, make sure to tell her the truth of why  she isn't invited. That way she knows it is a temporary thing, and not personal. It will still hurt, but honesty goes a long ways in sibling relationships.

 

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1 hour ago, BaseballandHockey said:

What do you all think?  If you had a baby, and all your siblings planned a not-baby-friendly trip without you, would your feelings be hurt?

My brother is nine years younger. My maternal aunt took me for international family vacations with her four kids. My paternal cousins (around my parents’ age) would take me for domestic trips. I would have been upset if I knew I was excluded from extended family trips because of my “baby brother”. 

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27 minutes ago, mathnerd said:

I will be the odd one out and say that I wouldn't be hurt. My DH's siblings have adult kids and we are the only ones having young kids - so, for us, it works the other way around - I don't want to be on a trip with them where I am holding them back from doing stuff that they like (one nephew is obsessed with wine tasting, the niece likes spas etc). I also don't want to do the things that they do with their adult kids but would love to take my own kids to museums, Disneyland, Legoland etc, so I politely refuse and tell them to have a good time without me. Sometimes my DH goes along with them, but I never do. There are no hurt feelings on either side because we are all at different stages of our lives and cannot do the same things and that is OK.

This makes it sound like you are actually invited, and you refuse. That's different than the OP's situation, where one sibling may be excluded.

I think there is not a way to exclude without hurt feelings. But there may be ways to discuss the situation with the sibling who has an infant -- "we're thinking of going on a family trip, but it's not going to be baby friendly; this is really awkward, because, we don't want you to feel left out and hope you won't be upset" or similar.

If I were the one with the baby, I would be hurt, but I would understand and would not hold it against anyone, as long as everyone was open about the decision making. If I were just excluded, my hurt feelings would be much deeper; I would feel rejected, and I would have a hard time getting over it.

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Yes, that would be hurtful.

I’d be inclined to invite but to say that this one is not baby friendly and leave it at that.  Not change the plans, but not fail to be inclusive of the sister, who will probably say no anyway.  And regarding the older kids, I’m not really seeing exactly what the problem is—are they hard to watch *with* the other cousins?  Because if there really isn’t any incremental increase in difficulty, it’s nice for all the bigger kids to get to know each other better.  If there is a large increase in difficulty, I think I just wouldn’t plan on taking them on excursions unless one of their parents comes along, at least part of the time.

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Yes I would be hurt. 
 

Invite them, expect that they will make the right decision for their family and respect that decision. If I understand you right you are concerned that if they come you will spend time with their kids.  Well, that’s the point of a family trip, to spend time with family. 

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I'd be really hurt. I was excluded from a "family" trip before, and it still stings. 

Invite them, give them the details of the trip, and let them know it's not baby-friendly so you'll understand if they don't want to make the trip.  

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Phew! This is all in the details of the sibling dynamics. Even vacationing with one sibling to the exclusion of others can cause hurt feelings (we would have loved to have joined you!). 
 

I’ve always been one to bow out (I was the only one with kids for a long time) but I have seen this dynamic blow up a lot in my friend group. Most invite all siblings, but are blunt about putting boundaries out—we’re going to do a lot of things that are not little kid friendly, we aren’t going to watch your kids, but we’d love to meet up for xyz and family meals. 
 

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For a long time, I was the one with small kids and everyone else was childless, but even that is different from the dynamic described, which is kids, just older.

Yeah, I’d probably feel hurt if it was everyone but me.  
My sisters definitely did some cool stuff without me, which was fine, but not a super cool trip with our stepbrother, too, leaving just me behind.

We DID do great family vacations, and continued when my kids were older and everyone else started having littles.

In a biggish family, I do see a difference between a family vacation with all but 1, and a Two Sisters (in-law) special trip. I can’t say that a new mom still wouldn’t be upset about being left out of a cool trip, but it’s a bit less harsh than being overtly omitted.

What sticks out to me is that a childless couple is being considered, and nothing said about how having a bunch of kids around (though older) would impact their experience. Maybe that’s just colored by my experience of everyone helping out and enjoying being together. I’ve never had a baby (mine or someone else’s) ruin anything but a nice shirt. 😉 

 

 

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I come from a very large family.  I have 7 siblings. I am the oldest. Some of the siblings are half siblings. different groups of them do things together all the time. Never do all 8 of us do anything all together.  nobody is upset . nobody feels excluded or left out. nobody expects everyone to be included. Mostly I am not included - I don't expect to be, and if I was invited I would have to decline more often than not. 
 

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my DH has 3 siblings and other families have done things without us because there kids were the same age, interests, whatever.  It never really bothered me more than in passing   And as my kids got older, I got it more   Not everything needs to be an outing for 20 vs 8 or whatever, it just gets more complex planning and making things work.

I might not invite the 3rd sibling  without kids so there isn’t an odd one out.  But you’ve done a lot with and for this family with the baby as of late if I am remembering correctly.     More than a lot of us could or would do.  I think it is fair to have a vacation without this family guilt free.  I think it’s ok to acknowledge you can’t control or be responsible other people’s feelings all the time.  That doesn’t mean not be kind about it but not everyone needs to be included for everything.  That’s life.  

Edited by FuzzyCatz
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Yes, I think inviting the younger sibling but not the other sister would hurt her. I think you should stick with the plan to just do it with the original 2 families. You have done a lot for this other sister. 

I

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I opened this thinking my answer would be no, but when I read the details changed my mind. 

This would not only very much hurt feelings, it would also likely alienate the oldest cousin, which would hurt even more. If you don’t want to go with the baby & siblings just go with the 4 of you. Don’t do it.  Invite them and hope they don’t come. 

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6 hours ago, Carol in Cal. said:

Yes, that would be hurtful.

I’d be inclined to invite but to say that this one is not baby friendly and leave it at that.  Not change the plans, but not fail to be inclusive of the sister, who will probably say no anyway.  And regarding the older kids, I’m not really seeing exactly what the problem is—are they hard to watch *with* the other cousins?  Because if there really isn’t any incremental increase in difficulty, it’s nice for all the bigger kids to get to know each other better.  If there is a large increase in difficulty, I think I just wouldn’t plan on taking them on excursions unless one of their parents comes along, at least part of the time.

Yes, from previous threads the older sibling of the baby is already a bit alienated. She sort of wants to play, but doesn’t know how to and it’s created difficult dynamics.

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I would be hurt.

DH's family does this to him often.  He would be glad to go on a vacation with them, but they never invite him.  In the past 11 years it has mutated to be like his family just really doesn't like our youngest kid as well.  (The kid is 11.  He has been once to his grandmother's house that he can remember and shown the toys kept there for the other grandkids.  He did not get to play with them).

The lack of inviting him has created a weird, awful dynamic and thrown up another barrier in how he thinks of his family.  It really is true that the blood of the covenant is thicker than the water of the womb....

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7 hours ago, Terabith said:

So, a family that has undergone horrific trauma in the past year should give up a trip that’s pretty much once in their children’s childhoods opportunity to avoid hurting the feelings of family with baby who they spent all year cooking for their kids and caring for their kids?  
 

Or they sacrifice the trip they want to please the family that gets everything already or to change the trip so rather than taking important time to heal and bond as a family they will babysit for these other kids instead, just in a different location?

Sometimes some things aren’t appropriate for infants. 

 

7 hours ago, Terabith said:

So how do you deal with the hurt feelings of the people who are caring for baby’s older siblings and cooking for them rather than healing themselves?  

You’ve added details to the situation that aren’t in the original post. I’m not sure how accurate they are but the details imply resentment and an unbalanced relationship between 2 families, where the non- baby family is doing so much for the baby family, that the non-baby family just can’t deal with the baby family on vacation at all.

which is a very different question than what was originally asked.

 

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It’s my understanding the OP has had the baby’s siblings all summer as full time daycare/auntie designed summer camp.  And the mom of the baby is at home with the baby.  She has been watching theses kids all summer.  I think it is completely reasonable to want a break from watching those kids and the additional complexity that a new born and 5 more included on an adventure brings.   So that plays into my thoughts on it.  It is far from a situation where this family is always excluded.  

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19 minutes ago, FuzzyCatz said:

It’s my understanding the OP has had the baby’s siblings all summer as full time daycare/auntie designed summer camp.  And the mom of the baby is at home with the baby.  She has been watching theses kids all summer.  I think it is completely reasonable to want a break from watching those kids and the additional complexity that a new born and 5 more included on an adventure brings.   So that plays into my thoughts on it.  It is far from a situation where this family is always excluded.  

It is reasonable, but reasonable isn't always logical when it comes to emotions. 😉

I would only do the two families.  Keep it quieter, make it not so obvious a break from the one family.  Otherwise, it looks like the relationship isn't wanted with the parent of the kids.

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1 hour ago, HomeAgain said:

It is reasonable, but reasonable isn't always logical when it comes to emotions. 😉

 

Of course.  But when something really is reasonable, I think letting go feeling you are solely responsible for someone else's possible emotions about something is emotionally healthy.  If anything this particular poster is above and beyond considering the feelings and needs of others typically.  Mom of baby's feelings are not more important than OP's needs and feelings.  Baby's parents have taken center stage in this family for quite a while now.   I don't think it hasn't been a bad thing for my kids to know they are invited to some things and not to others.  That really is life.  The people talking about always/regularly being excluded does not reflect what is going on here at all.  

OP is the in-law in this situation.  I could see the sister saying it is fine being able to pull mom of baby aside (who if I am understanding correctly is her actual sister) and talking to her about this and defusing it.  OP has done a TON for this family, as in way above and beyond what most could and would probably do the past many months.  While their own family is having their own set of struggles.  As the in-law, I generally defer to whatever my husband or his siblings think is right and fair.  If both OP's DH and sister think this is fine, it likely is fine.  

 

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2 hours ago, FuzzyCatz said:

It’s my understanding the OP has had the baby’s siblings all summer as full time daycare/auntie designed summer camp.  And the mom of the baby is at home with the baby.  She has been watching theses kids all summer.  I think it is completely reasonable to want a break from watching those kids and the additional complexity that a new born and 5 more included on an adventure brings.   So that plays into my thoughts on it.  It is far from a situation where this family is always excluded.  

OTOH, if this is all accurate, it would hurt those kids even more to be excluded, because as far as they know they are the beloved relatives of this aunt who has been like a third parent to them for quite a while in the recent past.

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6 minutes ago, Carol in Cal. said:

OTOH, if this is all accurate, it would hurt those kids even more to be excluded, because as far as they know they are the beloved relatives of this aunt who has been like a third parent to them for quite a while in the recent past.

Not doing ONE event with this family doesn't mean they still aren't very beloved and treasured family.   That's pretty over the top.  I have never remotely thought or felt that with any family groupings we weren't included in or indulged in letting my kids feel victimized by missing out on one off events that may or may not have worked well for us anyway.. 

Frankly, from the sounds of earlier threads, parents of baby could use a long extended at home stay with all their kids.  Those kids were spending more of their weekday waking hours with OP and her kids than at home.  

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No, I would not be offended.  But, I think the sibling should invite you but say no kids and let you choose.  However, you might want to not invite the younger brother so that it is less likely to offend. 

 

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Maybe you can just talk to the sibling with the little kids?  I think there’s a way to handle this without creating painful, hurt feelings.  Maybe let them know that the trip isn’t baby friendly, and there won’t be extra babysitting available, and you know it might not be on their wish list of things to do at the moment because of those issues. Maybe go ahead and start planning a trip that does include that sibling and family? I definitely wouldn’t plan it without talking to the family in question about it, making them feel it’s a secret, you know?

Neither DH and I have many siblings in our FOOs, and we have never traveled with them.  But!  DH suddenly came into four extra siblings about 10 years ago.  Very tight family, lots of fun, we are happy to be folded in. We have had to learn about planning trips with one or the other or splitting into groups. We just try to do a lot of talking to everyone. Plenty of times a trip will exclude one or two family groups, we just keep communicating, and make clear that we are planning to spend time with everyone at some point.  

 

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Well, I don't think you should plan the trip with the other families and NOT mention it to the family with the baby. So then they find out about it from Facebook or something? That would be really upsetting.

However, if you talk about it with them beforehand, they may just say, that sounds awesome but we can't do it with the baby. Or maybe you could bring the older siblings along, and parents stay home with the baby. 🙂 

Either way, I would definitely approach them and tell them what you're planning, and see what they think. 

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No, it wouldn't bother me at all.  BTDT.  I come from a family of 4 siblings and we have history of sometimes inviting everyone to everything and sometimes dividing up where one or more aren't invited to a particular group event, but everyone ends up invited to different things at different times. Seriously, people need to raise their children understanding this concept and applying it appropriately.

Some things are baby friendly and that's not something to take personally or be hurt about. Everyone else doesn't have forgo all non-baby friendly events until there's no longer a little niece or nephew in the mix.  I'm the sibling with the most kids over the widest period of time, so I'm speaking from the perspective of the one who wouldn't be invited due to having the littles. Again, BTDT.

If getting a sitter doesn't work for the baby and littles, then mom and dad can divide up with one staying home with littles and one taking the bigs to the extended family event.  If that isn't doable then that family unit can stay home and do something else fun while the extended family go to the event without them this time.  If one of the kids who stays home complains that the big cousins go to do whatever the event is, mom and dad can simply explain that it didn't work out for their family unit this time, but there will other extended family events in the future.  Not teaching children this perpetuates this problematic mindset in the future.

Repeat after me, "Not every event is for everyone." , "Everyone doesn't always get an invitation to everything." , "Everyone eventually gets to do some things.", "Every lack of invitation isn't an injury." 

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People without babies/small children are ALLOWED to do things that don’t work for tiny people. I would never expect my friends/family to do Baby Jail time with me. That’s just part of parenting and it’s nobody’s responsibility to make sure that you make zero parenting sacrifices. I’m also not the type who feels anyone is obligated to invite everyone to everything. You deserve a vacation that is truly restorative and the other family will get one when their kids are bigger. You don’t cheat your own children out of the experience to spare the feelings of grown adults. What do they expect? That you wait until your own kids are grown and gone because that’s more convenient to them?

An adult’s feelings are their own responsibility. If the adult is unusually reliant on family to help with their children, it makes sense that the family needs a break from them. They don’t get to hold the family hostage with their neediness. People make memories that don’t include you every day. A healthy adult can cope with this without getting obsessed over it. 
 

ETA: a healthy adult can also plan their own social interactions and invite who they like. The family with the little ones should do this for themselves. It takes some nerve to complain about being left out, while never making plans or extending invitations yourself. 
 

In the OPs shoes I would NOT spend a vacation on babysitting duty just to avoid an uncomfortable situation. 

Edited by KungFuPanda
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31 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

People without babies/small children are ALLOWED to do things that don’t work for tiny people. I would never expect my friends/family to do Baby Jail time with me. That’s just part of parenting and it’s nobody’s responsibility to make sure that you make zero parenting sacrifices. I’m also not the type who feels anyone is obligated to invite everyone to everything. You deserve a vacation that is truly restorative and the other family will get one when their kids are bigger. You don’t cheat your own children out of the experience to spare the feelings of grown adults. What do they expect? That you wait until your own kids are grown and gone because that’s more convenient to them?

An adult’s feelings are their own responsibility. If the adult is unusually reliant on family to help with their children, it makes sense that the family needs a break from them. They don’t get to hold the family hostage with their neediness. People make memories that don’t include you every day. A healthy adult can cope with this without getting obsessed over it. 
 

ETA: a healthy adult can also plan their own social interactions and invite who they like. The family with the little ones should do this for themselves. It takes some nerve to complain about being left out, while never making plans or extending invitations yourself. 
 

In the OPs shoes I would NOT spend a vacation on babysitting duty just to avoid an uncomfortable situation. 

That last paragraph?  Just no.  It’s a false dichotomy.  All she has to do is say that a parent has to come along with the other kids on any excursion.  

 

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2 minutes ago, kbutton said:

This sounds like 'splaining to the family why they don't want to go on a trip they very well might want to go on. Could backfire; will almost definitely cause hard feelings if they do want to go and realize this conversation is an attempt to talk to them about it without talking to them about it. They will feel "managed" as if they are the ones causing the problem. BTDT

It is possible to do exactly this, and still be the person that ends up being constantly excluded. You can be the person that always gets the short straw at everyone else's expense, and over time, it hurts.

It's totally an option to avoid babysitting on vacation and still not leave out only the family with the baby. You can just go on vacation with a smaller subset of family.

I think I missed a bit of the backstory. It seems like the entire family is putting a disproportionate amount of time, effort, and emotional energy into intense care for ONE family. I’d probably have to dig to find those details. I might be wrong, but it seems like the family with the baby is unwilling/unable to care for their children by themselves and inviting them is agreeing to a working vacation.  It’s not something you ask of someone who provided you with free daycare all summer, but it seems this family might be just the type to expect it. It sounds borderline dysfunctional and I wouldn’t walk on eggshells to protect this sense of entitlement. I’m having trouble understanding how an at-home mom even LETS someone care for her kids all summer. 

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6 minutes ago, Carol in Cal. said:

That last paragraph?  Just no.  It’s a false dichotomy.  All she has to do is say that a parent has to come along with the other kids on any excursion.  

 

 

16 minutes ago, kbutton said:

This sounds like 'splaining to the family why they don't want to go on a trip they very well might want to go on. Could backfire; will almost definitely cause hard feelings if they do want to go and realize this conversation is an attempt to talk to them about it without talking to them about it. They will feel "managed" as if they are the ones causing the problem. BTDT

It is possible to do exactly this, and still be the person that ends up being constantly excluded. You can be the person that always gets the short straw at everyone else's expense, and over time, it hurts.

It's totally an option to avoid babysitting on vacation and still not leave out only the family with the baby. You can just go on vacation with a smaller subset of family.

Sorry. I think I misunderstood the dynamic. I thought the mom with the baby was unwilling or unable to care for her own kids and that if anyone else was around she left it to them.  Ignore me. 

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14 minutes ago, kbutton said:

 

I think this added dimension actually makes it worse, particularly the timing. It goes past, "We're excluded" to "We're excluded, and they specifically want a break from US." I can tell you that bringing the other family members (some of whom have kids) make it seem less like, "We need to get away" and more like "We need to get away from you/your kids." It would make me feel like the help I'd gotten already was directly the cause of me not being invited, but yet, when the help was offered, I had no idea this would be the result. (I don't remember all the details about all of the help, and I do know the OP has gone to extreme lengths to be helpful.) The timing of these things really ties this all together with a much bigger potential for hurt. 

It's my understanding that all these kids will be in school soon and OP is starting work again this fall.  So this arrangement is likely coming to an end.  But it involved an extended babymoon for these parents and just WAY above and beyond organized outdoor fun for their 3 kids and her 2 own all summer.  And regular meal prep for them.   I cannot imagine in my dizziest daydreams someone providing that for my kids after having a baby.  Dang if someone took my kids for a few days to a week after I had a baby, I'd probably want to send them on a trip on my dime.  Not with my kids either.  

  I do think someone should talk to this other family so they know.  But I think that is on OP's DH and the actual siblings more than the OP.  The OP is already showing more concern about feelings that plenty would by posting about it.  I can see a couple sisters being able to chat through this without hurt feelings and it seems like the SIL she is planning this with would know the dynamic best and I think it is fair to trust her and DH on it.  It may be that baby's family needs a wake up call frankly.  

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37 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

It takes some nerve to complain about being left out,

Who said they would complain?  The OP asked if feelings would be hurt and people are answering with how they would feel.  It’s perfectly possible to feel hurt by someone’s actions and deal with that yourself without making a big deal about it.  
 

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I do think there'd be hurt feelings if all the sibs but one are invited.

I hated when my siblings made decisions for me.  One of my late sisters was especially bad about that.  "I would've asked you but I figured you wouldn't want to".

Why couldn't the baby dad come along with his other kids who are the right age?  Parent and baby stay back at the hotel, campsite etc?

You wouldn't have to end up watching their older kids if you said no and established it from the beginning.

Just my two cents.

 

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