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When do SO's become "family?"

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The holidays are coming up and I have a bit of a dilemma.  My son (25) has over the years brought home a few women he has dated, but nothing truly serious.  When he started dating Renee, I sensed early on that it was serious. I even imagined that they might marry one day.  That didn't happen, but they did move across the country together. I know they love each other but they have both said that marriage isn't a priority.

So Christmas is coming along with family get-togethers.  In my mind, Renee has the same status as a daughter-in-law. She lives with and is building a life with my son.  But my mother doesn't look at Renee that way.  This wouldn't be a problem, except that she always has a big family Christmas and gives wonderful gifts to all her grandchildren and their spouses.  She has told me that she will be giving a significant gift to my son, but it would be a personal gift for HIM.  She said she'd get a "token" gift for Renee.  I understand that she is from an older generation and feels that marriage is sacred, but I know that Renee will be hurt by my mother's actions.  I also understand that it would be difficult to change my mother's point of view...so is there anything I can do to make this situation better?

by on Nov. 8, 2012 at 12:54 PM
Replies (101-110):
sucker4myloves
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 8:54 PM

You can't change the old lady's mind. Just explain to Renee how your mother feels and that it's nothing person, just how old folks roll. Marriage is sacred to her, that's not a bad thing ya know? If Renee doesn't understad then she's not worth a whole lot to begin with.

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justone_jen
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 8:55 PM

Personally, I'd say to her, "Don't mind my mother. Her views are a bit out dated, and it's just not worth the argument. I consider you a part of our family."

My mate and I don't see marriage as a priority, either. We've been together for years now, and both of our families treat the other like family. That said, if I were in a simliar situation as Renee, I really wouldn't give a shit if everyone else got a nice gift. It's nothing earth shattering. I think you're thinking too much. :)

juniebug11
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:09 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting cupcake_mom:

some people dont think marrige is a big deal. "family" is what YOU make of it

Quoting juniebug11:

I wouldn't consider her a daughter-in-law untill they were married. I would wait untill my son made the full commitment, because things can change.


Yeah, and thats what I think. To me marriage is a big deal, she asked I answered

ricishay
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:25 PM

I am 64 years old. Dont know how old your Mom is..but I am very open minded..however, some of my friends from high school are not. It is what it is. Marriage was very important in our generation and certainly in those older than me. I understand that my ideas of life can be very old fashioned in todays world..and it is hard to realize. Anyone older than me must have a much harder time. Let it be.

samurai_chica
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:35 PM

Get a nice extra gift for her

budgie1117
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:36 PM
1 mom liked this
I've been married for 8 years, and last Christmas my MIL got me Cottonelle wet wipes and a box of chocolates. I guess the wipes were to use to wipe my chocolatey fingers afterward? I don't know. I wasn't hurt, I actually found it hilarious. She and I have a pretty good relationship. I'm sure your son's GF will accept any gift graciously and kindly. It's the thought that counts, right?
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cupcake_mom
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:39 PM
I was just giving a different point of view.

Quoting juniebug11:



Quoting cupcake_mom:


some people dont think marrige is a big deal. "family" is what YOU make of it


Quoting juniebug11:


I wouldn't consider her a daughter-in-law untill they were married. I would wait untill my son made the full commitment, because things can change.




Yeah, and thats what I think. To me marriage is a big deal, she asked I answered

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Elena-725
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 9:56 PM

Honestly, if I were Renee, I wouldn't expect the same gift as the other inlaws.  Now if her gift were noticeably different in a bad way that spelled out little thought or respect, I could understand if she felt hurt.  OTOH, if the gift were lovely and showed some thought put behind it, Renee's feelings probably wouldn't be hurt.  Perhaps you could go shopping with your mother when she selects gifts.  You know, tell her the sort of gifts Renee may like.

Hope things turn out well for everyone involved!

kelliewhitney
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 10:21 PM

Explain to your son's SO that grandma is very old fashioned and means nothing by it. As long as she knows YOU see her as family, she should humor the old lady. If she and your DS decide to get married, that is a different matter.

I lived with my DH for 2 years before we were married. We were not permitted to sleep in the same room while visiting relatives, and we respected that. He didn't get awesome gifts until we were married. He didn't have a problem with that at all! Living together is NOT the same thing as being married. I'm sorry, but I have done both, and it is VERY different, even if the living together situation and the marriage are wonderful.

HolidayCheers
by on Nov. 9, 2012 at 10:34 PM

Yeah tell your mom she needs to keep up with the times and quit being a B ( Yeah i meant that word)  to this nice girl, (I've been with my b/f for 8+ yrs and we are not married, but have talked about it before and have one child together...) I think a couple who has been together for more than 4yrs  who ever they are with should be considered family, married or not. You dont need a ring on your finger to be a part of someones family. To not give a gift for one feeling or another is fine, but to go about it this way if front of other family is rude and uncalled for. If anything your MOTHER of all MOTHERS should give his gift to him on the side or simply say oh i'm sorry i mailed you guys your gifts because i didnt know if u were coming or not, that would state the obvious with out making a seen and causeing hurt feelings. if anything else just warned Renee about your moms upcoming/doing, so shes doesnt feel left out. LOL if it was me I'd tell Renee and then if i were Renee when i came over I'd be as nice as can be to everyone (especially her...ur mom) give her a hug, and then hand her a beautiful pointseta or something to make her feel like crap for being such a rotten turd in the first place.... best of luck!

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