Everyone has different traditions for birthdays. Some might hit a pinata, while others sing a special song.
Redditor Bearwear671 has found a new tradition that someone has introduced her to. However the original poster (OP) doesn’t appreciate this tradition.
Instead, OP decided to leave the party with the gift she brought, bringing the ire of the family down on her. She doesn’t think she was necessarily wrong, but wonders if she’s the bad guy for not making peace.
OP decided to ask the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit about what went down.
And they were ready to pass judgement.
“AITA For Walking Out Of My 5 Year Old Nieces Birthday Party & Taking Her Present With Me?”
But did OP do anything wrong?
“I 24 female, my niece 5 female, and my sister-in-law Megan 25 female”
“Yesterday was my niece’s birthday, my niece is my sister-in-law’s first born, and my sister in law in currently Pregnant with her fourth child.”
“When I received the invention to the party there was a note asking everyone to not forget about the mommy when shopping for birthday gifts. That my nieces birthday was also meant to celebrate the woman who carried her for nine months.”
“I will be honest I’m not Megan’s biggest fan, I’ve always found her to be a large drama queen. So when I read that I was supposed to bring her a present to her daughter’s birthday party I was annoyed and knew I would be doing no such thing.”
“For my Nieces birthday, I made her a large wool hand-crocheted blanket and matching teddy bear.”
It sounds like a lovely gift, but what could go wrong?
“When it came time to open gifts it was Megan sitting on a chair in the center of the living room with my nieces sitting on the floor next to her.”
“Megan opened every single present even the ones meant for my niece. It was only after she was done she would hand the open present to my niece.”
“When it came time to open my present I watch as Megan open my gift, shuffled past the teddy bear and blanket, and proceeded to search for ‘her gift’. When Megan found no other present she looked up and asked me if there was another present from me in the pile, I responded ‘No’.”
“Disappointed Megan took the blanket out of the box and proceeded to ask me questions like ‘where did you get such a cute blanket’ and ‘I hope you didn’t break the bank with such an extravagant present’. Her tone of voice came across as sincere but the way she stared at me across the room definitely gave me a different impression.”
“I responded to her questions by saying that I made the teddy bear and blanket myself and that it was no trouble for my little niece. Megan chuckles and asks me in front of the whole party if I had actually made the gifts, I responded absolutely.”
“Megan and I go back and forth in front of everyone for a minute but Megan ends the conversation by saying I didn’t actually make the gifts because I didn’t collect the wool for the blanket or make the buttons on the bear myself. That for something to be handmade you have to use only your hands from start to fish otherwise it doesn’t count.”
The two bickering in front of everyone couldn’t have been great.
“After my MIL pulled me aside, she was extremely upset with me for antagonizing Megan. No one in the family likes Megan but my in-laws play nice because when they didn’t Megan and her husband moved halfway across the country, they just recently moved back to town.”
“After my MIL thoroughly lectured me on ‘keeping the peace’ she asked me to leave the party, go buy Megan a present, and to come back when I am ready with an apology.”
“Instead, I left the party and took my presents with me. All-day today I have been playing telephone with friends and relatives of Megan. All of them accusing me of ruining my niece’s birthday party and telling me I’m an AH for stealing my niece’s birthday presents.”
After the post was up for a short period of time, people were asking the same question. Why did OP take the present back? Why didn’t she leave it for her neice?
So she came back and provided some more context.
“Edit: My intentions for taking the present was to rewrap the gift and give it to my niece one on one so she could actually open a birthday present. After her mom opened the present she put it back in the box and back on the table she didn’t actually give the gift to my niece.”
OP doesn’t think she should have to bring a gift for her sister-in-law, but her family wants her to ‘keep the peace’. And it’s a party thrown by her SIL, so should she just accept things are done differently?
Is OP the bad guy for what she did?
On Reddit, the users of the board judged OP for refusing to giver her sister-in-law a gift and leaving the party by including one of the following in their response:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
The board agreed that OP was justified in her actions. The SIL seemed to be under the impression that people are required to do exactly what she says and things couldn’t be further from the truth.
And it’s not just a difference of opinion. The SIL became the monster by taking over her own daughter’s party and making it about her instead.
Commenters agreed, OP wasn’t wrong and the SIL absolutely was.
“So your sister in law threw a party for herself on your niece’s birthday and got mad when you only brought a present for your niece?”
“I’d go no contact with her. This woman may have had a baby but she clearly is no adult.”
“NTA” – mdthomas
“Megan sounds like a 25 year old spoiled child. To the point that she seems delusional.”
“I’ve never heard of a parent expecting presents on their child’s birthday. NTA. Megan needs professional help.” – SuspendedResolution
“NTA. Your sister-in-law sounds unbearable, she also doesn’t sound like she’s cut out to be a mom.”
“Having children means putting them first not taking over the spotlight every opportunity you get.” – Flower197755
“Regarding the mom/SIL wanting bday gifts for herself, she needs to get over herself. This day/party is NOT about her, it’s about her kid.”
“As an aside, my daughter was literally born the day before my bday. I knew then that I would never celebrate another birthday, and I was OK with that.”
“On the other hand, I’m still 39yo.”
“I understand OPs goal of wanting to give the gifts to her niece at another time. The problem is that the kiddo likely understood the taking of the gifts as she would not be getting them.”
“That may not have been the intent, but that is how a 5yo would likely see things.”
“Somebody needs to sit that woman down and explain to her that it’s her kids bday, and that her kid needs to open her own presents. And that momma will get gifts on her bday, and only her bday.”
“NTA.” – lapsteelguitar
“Man this Megan girl sounds like a nightmare. JFC those poor kids.”
“You absolutely did the right thing. I’m saying n t a even with taking the gift because you intent to give it to her one on one but it is a dick-ish move.”
“However Megan strikes me as the type to throw it away because she’s mad.” – lending_ear
“You did not ruin your nieces party, her mother did by making the party about her and not her daughter.”
“The mother sounds like a real piece of work.”
“First time I’ve heard bringing a present for the mother to their kids party.. WFT is wrong with people.” – gilbertwebdude
People agreed that the SIL was being ridiculous with her request. No one even considered that OP might be right.
But that’s not to say they didn’t joke about it.
“I mean if she’s getting technical then doesn’t her husband also deserve a gift since he’s the reason she’s pregnant to begin with?” – Imaginary_Truth1856
“I guess we should also get the doctor a present as well I mean she did deliver the baby into the world” – Bearwear671 (OP)
“Well what about all the grandparents? If it wasn’t for them the parents wouldn’t exist. Shouldn’t they get presents too?” – Fennec_Fan
“All of have us have forgotten to gift the first primordial fish that crawled onto land each and every time we’ve celebrated anyone’s birthday.” – teniaava
“You mean Tony the Fish? Absolutely!” – WellyKiwi
OP’s difficulty with her SIL is going to be a nuisance for the family. While OP shouldn’t feel compelled to make nice with her sister-in-law, the situation doesn’t bode well for family relations.