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Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her

Hey all,

Need some advice, wedding last weekend and arrived back from our honeymoon yesterday.

Went to go grab the cards from my mothers house this morning but was met with HEAVY resistance. it ended up with my husband and I leaving after some yelling from both my mother and myself. She claims she needs to know who gave what, and we need to open them in front of her. Quite frankly I feel its absolutely none of her business. She tried pulling the im paying so I need to know card, as shes done since the we even started planning this wedding. She was yelling that some people only gave because of her and we needed to be grateful for that. I lost it and stormed out when during her yelling at us she yelled I wanna know what people gave me. Which could have been a slipup, could of not who knows.

Whew. I already feel better. Thanks for letting me vent as well.

Am I wrong to want to open the cards privately with my new husband?

Re: Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her

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    Just noticed it deleted my spacing btw paragraphs. Sorry for that, as Im on my phone
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    Simply FatedSimply Fated member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Answer Name Dropper
    edited November 2012
    So she's, like, holding the gifts hostage now? That really sucks! This is a good warning for those brides who leave their gifts with someone else while they go on their honeymoon.

    I have no real advice, but you have my sympathy.

    Some of the spacing, if not all, is still intact. Paragraphs look weird on my phone, too, but then show up mostly fine on my computer.
    image
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    I agree with you, I don't think it's any of your mother's business who gave you what. Open the cards privately with your husband. I don't know why she's being so difficult but if it were my mother I wouldn't back down. Let her have her tantrum and give her space until she cools off.
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    Unfortunately we didnt really have a choice but to have her take the gifts. We left from the hotel to the airport early the next morning. We never came home after we left for the venue. DH is over there now trying to reason with her, and to pick up at least the cards.
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    My parents took ours as well. We said we would open gifts, but no envelopes in front of them. She agreed. She then called to find out how much her sister gave. That I was fine with because there is lots of drama there.
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    Wow.

    If reasoning won't work I'd go back to my parents' home when my mother wasn't there to get the gifts back.

    She gave you a wedding.   That's a gift in itself.   That absolutely does NOT mean that she's entitled to see what people gave you privately.   She gets to see that at a shower.

    Someone like this would get an etiquette book for Christmas and I'd have serious issue about spending my holiday with the woman.
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    In New York, larceny includes withholding items that do not belong to you.  Unfortunately, it looks like in Colorado you also have to intend to deprive someone of the items permanently.  

    You might want to consider calling the non-ermergency number for the police to describe the situation and see if an officer would go with you to retrieve your property.

    I realize that's a harsh suggestion, but if she won't hand them over without requiring you to open them there, I'm not sure what else to suggest.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:2eb5b6f4-3230-4b83-8f7a-60e66bd913f6">Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE] DH is over there now trying to reason with her, and to pick up at least the cards.
    Posted by coolwhipz1[/QUOTE]

    Who in the what now? Why is your H over there trying to reason with <em>your </em>mother? Your mother, your responsibilty.
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    In Response to Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her:[QUOTE]In Response to Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her: DH is over there now trying to reason with her, and to pick up at least the cards.Posted by coolwhipz1Who in the what now? Why is your H over there trying to reason with your mother? Your mother, your responsibilty. Posted by zitiqueen[/QUOTE]

    I tried to reason with her and got yelled at pretty badly. I under no circumstances feel like I should have put myself in that position again. He offered to go speak with her and calmly try to come to reasoning with her. hes waaaaaay more calm than I am feeling. At this point I dont really want anything to do with her right now, shes made this entire experience awful from the beginning.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:d0183fd9-f859-417b-b8f0-96fa4ca2f30e">Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her : Who in the what now? Why is your H over there trying to reason with your mother? Your mother, your responsibilty.
    Posted by zitiqueen[/QUOTE]

    <div>This...</div><div>
    </div><div>And no, I don't think you need to open them in front of her.  H's mom really wanted us to open stuff in front of her.  We just didn't (but she never had anything in her possession).  she pulled the same crap at our baby shower, but since it was at her house, and were staying at her house, we had no choice but to indulge her stupid need to be all judge-y and nosey about how much people gave us.</div>
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    Jen4948Jen4948 member
    First Anniversary First Answer First Comment 5 Love Its
    edited November 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:d0183fd9-f859-417b-b8f0-96fa4ca2f30e">Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her : Who in the what now? Why is your H over there trying to reason with your mother? Your mother, your responsibilty.
    Posted by zitiqueen[/QUOTE]

    This comes off a little bit harsh.  I don't think it's any of our business why H is doing this.  Maybe it's because H and the OP think they have a better shot if he tries to "reason" with this woman, although her attitude sounds like that's not likely.  Maybe it's to establish him and the OP as a team.  Oh, and they're his gifts too, so why shouldn't he be involved?

    OP, you're absolutely right-what the gifts are, and their respective values, are none of her business whatsoever, because there is no "prize" for who gave the best/biggest/most expensive/whatever gift.  If it were me, I'd tell her that the gifts are meaningless because I plan to donate every single one of them.  But that's me-I'm not recommending this course of action, just sympathizing with you because your mother is being a class A jerk.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:0aad1a0c-0c2b-4c3a-a67e-72fbf54b17db">Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re:Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her : This... And no, I don't think you need to open them in front of her.  H's mom really wanted us to open stuff in front of her.  We just didn't (but she never had anything in her possession).  she pulled the same crap at our baby shower, but since it was at her house, and were staying at her house, we had no choice but to indulge her stupid need to be all judge-y and nosey about how much people gave us.
    Posted by Loopyseven[/QUOTE]

    From the post above this, it sounds like she did try on her own, and it didn't work, the woman is bat-poo crazy.  Maybe she and her FH feel like they'll have better luck and establish themselves as a team if he does it.  And they're his gifts too-not just hers.
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    I wish your H all the success in the world.  But if he does not succeed then maybe you should calm down, put on a smiley face, give it a couple days (not too quickly so it doesn't seem fake) and then tell your mom that you thought about it and really appreciate her and all she's done and you don't mind opening them with her but you'd rather do it over you and H's house where you can sort and organize everything at the same time, put things away, begin to write thank you cards, and throw away the wrapping paper and so forth.  Tell her you just think it would be better from a logistics point of view to do it at your house and she's welcome to follow you over to be a part of it.  But you want to get started right away because the guests are expecting thank you cards so whenever she's ready you're ready.  If this works, then once everything is in your house you've got the control and you can open some things in front of her and discreetly put some other stuff up until she's gone.
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    Do you think your mom is going to confront people that, in her mind, didn't give enough? If not, what's the harm in opening them in front of her? I guess it doesn't bother me as much as some other people. We opened our gifts in front of our parents. We didn't have either of them copying down what we got, so they'd only remember if they have a great memory. We also didn't share how much we got in checks or giftcards. 
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    Jen4948Jen4948 member
    First Anniversary First Answer First Comment 5 Love Its
    edited November 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:3f18ad3f-ae20-4497-891d-5e2b965338cf">Re: Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE]Do you think your mom is going to confront people that, in her mind, didn't give enough? If not, what's the harm in opening them in front of her? I guess it doesn't bother me as much as some other people. We opened our gifts in front of our parents. We didn't have either of them copying down what we got, so they'd only remember if they have a great memory. We also didn't share how much we got in checks or giftcards. 
    Posted by MoonlightSilver[/QUOTE]

    I think the problem here is her <strong>demand</strong> that the gifts have to be opened in front of her.  She's treating the OP and her husband like 4 year olds instead of adults.  Maybe she's planning to insist that the OP and her husband return the gifts if they don't pass muster with her.

    In any case, her attitude and treatment of the OP and her husband over gifts that aren't hers is wrong and if tolerated, keep the door open for more of the same treatment in the future.
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    What's stopping her mom from just steaming them open and taking a peek?

    What a weirdo...
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    Your mom sounds like a friggin psycho. I would tell her to hand over your possessions or you will come back with the police. Of course, I wouldn't want to continue to have a relationship with someone like that, mother or not. So I wouldn't care how bringing the cops to her house affected the future relationship.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-trying-to-force-us-to-open-gifts-with-her?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:5cbb15c6-9748-40ce-8db6-e7db5916d2f1Post:cb215aee-b98b-42f0-93bc-8baf77abd60f">Re: Mom trying to force us to open gifts with her</a>:
    [QUOTE]We opened our gifts in front of both our parents at our house but when we opened cards we didn't announce the amount. Later <strong>my Mom asked how much we recieved</strong> and I gave her an overall number for money and gift cards.
    Posted by scribe95[/QUOTE]

    Why did she need to know that?
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    Do you have a key to her home? If so, wait till she's out and pick up your property. If she's a crazy that never leaves her house, recruit the help of your relatives. Have several people come over with you and present a united front. Trust me, the people who gave you the gifts would be horrified that your mother wants to play 'judgement panel'. They'll help you. And if noone is available to help, call the police. That aweful aerful woman needs to be humiliated for her horrific behavior.
    Don't make me mobilize OffensiveKitten

    image

    Anniversary

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    Hey guys, just got off work. So H was able to talk some sense into her and he got the cards from her. The gifts stayed but we are going to go grab them sometime this week. Luckily she left this morning on a business trip, and I do have keys to the house. After thinking about it she may have been so demanding about opening them right there and then because she was leaving today for a trip. Am definitely going to write thank yous and then delete the list. thats not something im willing to share. Thanks for letting me know its okay not to share!! I never really post, usually lurk but this really pissed me off.
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    I think it sucks that she basically held the gifts hostage, but I'm like moonlightsilver.  Overall, I don't see the big deal with opening gifts in front of parents.  I figure if you can do it for a shower, wedding gifts aren't that much different.... and actually I think it's a lot less awkward than a shower because it's just people who (hopefully) love you and want the best for you - not a bunch of other women also who may get their panties in a wad because you got more than they did, KWIM? 

    My parents want to know as well because they always ALWAYS reciprocate based on relationship but also amount.  They hate to look cheap and they don't want the other person to feel like they're being one-upped, so they try to match gift-giving as approximately as possible.  We've told them we will open physical gifts in front of them and just let them know that so-and-so gave a gift card or cash but not how much.
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