My mother in law is mad that we aren't buying her a gift this year: Advice?

So I need some advice. My husband and I hate Christmas because we get stressed out about what to buy family members. I started buying my MIL Christmas decor because she told me that’s what my husband always bought her growing up, and she loved it. I’d buy something of quality too. Pottery barn etc. Well, then, she seemed annoyed. She told me not to buy any more Christmas decor. So I took note that she liked massages and so I bought her a $130 gift certificate. As just a little bonus treat, I bought her some candy that she told me she loved. Then afterward, she tells me gift cards and gift certificates are not personal enough. One year my SIL and I got together and had all the grandkids take a nice photo together, and we had it put on a canvas. She said she didn’t know where she’d put it. She doesn’t like lotion or jewelry. She does like candles, but I already bought her six large Yankee candles last year, and I know she’ll say something negative about it again. As you can see, it’s making me so unhappy during the holidays, and my husband agrees that it’s ridiculous. So the other day when she brought up buying my husband a Christmas gift, (my husband had warned me that he had been thinking long and hard about Christmas this year and that he was putting his foot down and telling his family that we would just be buying for kids this year. I was so relieved. ) I just told her nicely what he said to say. That he’s just focusing on the kids and nobody but him or me anything, she was so mad she hung up on me. Then she calls me back and tells me how horrible my husband is for taking that away from a mother and that she will no longer be going on a cruise with us next year. That we’ve just cost her $250 in deposit $. Which isn’t even true. She hadn’t booked it yet as she forgot I’m the one that normally helps her book her cruises, and I logged on, and it was just on a 48 hr hold and not actually booked. There’s so much more to this story as far as the bigger picture goes. For example, she favors other grandkids over mine and not once comes to games or etc to mine. But calls me for things like booking cruises or looking at her call log on Verizon to look up a number she called. Silly mundane things that she could do herself, but is too lazy to do. I just feel like her relationships with people are one-sided, and I don’t know where to go from here. Now we aren’t speaking. All because she wants a gift? I don’t get it. Thanks in advance for any advice.


She sounds childish. Christmas isn’t even about gifts. Stick to your guns and only buy for the kids. She sounds like she will complain no matter what you do anyway so don’t stress about it.


If she’s that ungrateful, she doesn’t deserve a present anyways. Presents are about the thought, not the actual gift.


I wouldn’t buy her anything.

1 Like

Happy Holidays,enjoy the silence…selfish person…congrats to ur hubby for putting his foot down


I hate Christmas for this exact reason!!!

Presents should only be for the children as far as I’m concerned, but not many people agree


Out of spite I’d buy her a broom and tell her to enjoy her new ride. Lol


Get your kids to make something for her , if she complains say sorry you don’t seem to like the gifts I choose so I thought I would leave it to the kids this year :rofl:


Sounds similar to my MIL

Send her a belated “Christmas” gift from the cruise. :grimacing::stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


Shes ungrateful so dont buy her not a dam thing!!


Give her an IOU. Then tell her when she decides what she’d llike without criticism then you’ll get her a gift.

1 Like

I would just enjoy the silence while it lasts and have a great holiday with my children.


Get her a big black vibrator… make her Christmas merry :smirk:


Good for you for putting your foot down. You shouldn’t feel obligated to get her anything. It’s about being together. She will get over it and enjoy the holidays.


Get her some pliers to pull the stick outta her ass

It sounds like the best gift of all is a little bit of a break from her. I m sorry you’re dealing with that, she sounds very hard to get along with. I would let the dust clear and then if your husband wants to speak to her I would probably let him take the lead on that since she is his mom. It really sounds like you and your husband have been trying to please her and nothing does, you can only feel bad for someone who is so miserable they can’t appreciate what they have right in front of them. She needs help and maybe some time to reflect on what she is missing without you doing all of her little tasks. Sending you positive vibes because it really sounds like you tried and tried and never got appreciated, I appreciate you! :grimacing:

1 Like

She sounds very childish and immature. We’ve started just buying gifts for the kids and then do a white elephant gift exchange for just the adults. Takes a huge financial burden off all of us and it’s fun to watch the kids enjoy themselves


We buy gifts for people under 18, the adults of the house hold do a treat exchange.
She is a real stooge and dosen’t sound like she deserves anything.
You should make her be a grown as woman and do her own mundane things.
Take care of you and yours

I think it’s pretty messed up and honestly I agree with your husband u took your time with ur gifts and she wants to put her nose up to everything you give her then she shouldn’t get anything at all! If she wants to petty that’s on her .

Dont get her shit 🤷🏽

Ya thats a little extreme for her to be acting like that. That’s something that you would expect a child to act. I have a big family and luckily we every year do a secret Santa so we don’t have to buy presents for everyone. Each child and adult has 1 present to open on Christmas Eve and we do our own thing on Christmas day.

Honestly I would just buy her some diet pills or a jacket that is 3 sizes too small and call it a day.


She is selfish and uncaring. Stick with what your husband says. You can’t buy love.

She sounds selfish and impossible to please. Luckily your husband has your back, I wouldn’t worry about her. Any Grandma(or any adult for that matter) who doesn’t understand that you’re only buying for kids, has a real issue. If she makes no attempt to spend time with your kids or go to games then I would make myself unavailable for a while. Seems like she only comes around when it benefits her. Don’t stress about Christmas. :heart: Don’t feel obligated to buy for everyone. You, your husband, and your kids should come first.

Wow…she is a piece of work…take her to dinner someplace nice…or a play …

Just do something simple…gets the kids to make her some cookies…she’s happy and it’s not a gift from you, and the kids will love it :slight_smile:

I’ve been doing that since my 1st born…just worry about the kids…that’s it. If we have extra to splurge, then would be SO next…then my parents n siblings, but my kids are obligations…the rest are not! U have gotten her very nice gifts and she finds something to bitch about w every one! Fuck that! U shouldn’t be worrying about her or spending money on her if u cant or dont want to. U have shown your appreciation to her many times and since she isnt appreciating it, then why waste your money and time? I agree w u and your SO. Just for the kids. Besides, that’s who xmas means the most to.

I feel like the last few Christmases have gotten way to out of control like it’s all about gifts… This year we are taking kids to a cabin and just spending time together.


Christmas is about celebrating the birth of Christ. Not gifts. Sounds like a ton of drama. It’s meant to be filled with joy and celebration of family being together. People are important, not presents. When you substitute presents for presence. Its about Family spending time together making memories. Enjoy your kids and husband :slight_smile:


If shes not talking to you then dont talk to her! Basic! Very childish! Cherished every moment that shes naot talking to you at all… Dont stressed yourself out for her! Enjoy your christmas with your family and just forget her…

Get a $1 coffee mug, get her favorite candy and stuff the mug with the candy. Use clear cellophane, tie that puppy right up, with a twist tie first, followed by christmas colored curling ribbon, tie it and attach a candy cane curl the ribbon. There you go. Every body likes coffee or tea or just something to drink in general, and she gets her fave candy. Cheap gift and she gets a gift I general. May not be what she wants, but it’s something.

She needs to grow up and get over it!!

Start buying her shitty presents to match her attitude :joy:

I wouldn’t do anything. Like zero response and let her come to you when she’s done being stupid.


Tell her not going on a cruise with you is gift enough for everyone! :v:


Seems she forgot what Christmas is all about and has turned into a selfish bitch. Get her a card, NOTHING OF VALUE and tell her to shove it if she doesn’t like it. :roll_eyes: it’s for the kids anyways

I’m petty. I’d get her one of those little bags of candies that look like coals and put it in a tiny box inside of more and more boxes just to get her excited.


It is his mother. Just buy her a nice girft and smile.

Donot worry about it

We give updated pics every year, they dont like it we are like well, k its whatcha get period.

A gift is a gift she shouldn’t be complaining about anything you buy her! Spending Christmas with her should be enough, she’s sounds like a little 5 year old brat :woman_shrugging: sorry she causes you stress around the jolly season


We buy for the grandkids and then all the adults each buy one gift and wrap it. After dinner we put them all under the tree and pick numbers and we pick a gift in that order. Honestly last year someone got a nerf gun set and the adults all ran through my house and yard shooting each other. Best Christmas ever cause no one was stressed about buying 30 gifts for the adults oh and put a price limit…we did $20


Wow. She’s really something. Stick to what you decided. She’s not a child and doesn’t need a gift. Cry me a river lady.

Suggest the adults have a gift exchange.

Wow how petty this all seems. I havent recieved a christmas gift since i was 17 years old and havent even thought about it. Christmas gifts are for kids. #firstworldproblems

1 Like

We don’t buy for everyone else. We give everyone family pictures every year and that is it. We focus on our kids and that’s it. We would go broke I’d we bought gifts for everyone. So nope just updated pics and normally everyone loves just that.

Give her the gift of changing your number and locks :joy: she’s a peice of work. Attention attention attention

1 Like

Have you ever seen Roseanne? Maybe watch that and see how Jackie and Roseanne deal with their mom. :sob::rofl: Because it sounds like thatm


His mother - HE should pick out her gift AND he should be the one handling ANY info (like the kids only gifts) to her!! He handles his family - You handle yours!!:sunglasses:

1 Like

I think you guys are doing right by only buying for kids this year.

In my family everyone focuses on all of the kids. For the adults we draw for secret Santa on Thanksgiving, that way each adult gets at least one gift but no burden is put on anyone.

Do a white elephant gift exchange! Those are fun. Sounds like she’d bitch and moan over it. Does she have any other narcissistic traits? What a PITA. Ungrateful brat. Sorry you have to deal with her.

We started buying 5-15 dollar gift cards for adults. A range of xbox to starbucks to even just their favorite restaurant. We even had a few years with no gifts due to budget. This yearwe are doing a small gift for everyone. Around 10-15 bucks and focusing on our son.

She sounds so immature its embarrassing. Honestly, Good Riddance!! Make the holidays this year just about your kids. Dont focus on anyone but your kids, your husband and yourself. They come before ANYONE else. So if she wants to act entitled then let her. Can’t change a Karen

Stick to your husband and what he said about the matter, I think that is best. Stand y’alls ground! Let her throw her tantrum. She either can get over it or get out of yalls lives.


We do a Santa funny exchange no more then $20 between the adults and presents for the kiddos… I do let my parents in law be Grandparents.

Just buy her something dame

:joy::joy::joy: seriously? Gifts are just that “gifts” and you’re not obligated to get her one.

1 Like

:clap: your going to have a peaceful holiday. Enjoy and if she comes back around and wants to get together do it on your terms or better yet, just enjoy your family

1 Like

Our house hold its the kids and only the kids that get presents 2legged and 4legged

We don’t buy for anyone but our own kids and my 2 nephews… She can go buy her own gift if it means so much to her :roll_eyes:

If she can’t show gratitude as basic human decency, then I wouldn’t spend the time attempting to please her. Not worth my time.

1 Like

Remind her the real reason for the season, and enjoy Christmas with your kids while they are young.

1 Like

Sounds like my MIL. She threw an enormous fit one Christmas because my FIL didn’t buy her a large, or expensive present. She ended up making him take her to Hawaii and buying her this ugly necklace that cost $10k. She’s such a brat.


I went through this with my own mother, not just at Christmas but Mother’s day and birthdays as well. One year my brother and I both bought her the same gift. She had a Christmas village which I always put up for her and I bought her an expensive piece to put in it so I gave it to her early so we could add it to the village. She didn’t like it and told me all the reasons why. My brother was here visiting from Florida and he got her the exact same piece - and it was absolutely wonderful. I decided then and there that was the last time I would buy her a gift. Instead I would just get her a really nice card and put some cash inside - like it or lump. I wasn’t going to run around racking my brain to find something that she would like because I knew it wouldn’t happen. We finally came to the point where my brothers and my mother agreed we would stop giving Christmas gifts to each other and do only the children. So much more sensible! SO STICK TO YOUR GUNS! She’s going to be angry no matter what. And when she calls and wants you to make reservations and do things tell her that you have booked yours and your husbands and she can book her own or find someone else to do it. Make sure your husband backs you up in this - and I suggest HE be the one to tell her, not you. She is HIS mother after all. She enjoys making you miserable, so remove yourself from the picture entirely and have some peace.


Bake her something :hugs:

We stopped gifting for everyone … we only gift for the kids now… and why is a grown woman so picky even about the gifts she is getting … childish to me

Ok so clearly she’s a fussy bitch but what mother doesn’t want a present from there son at Xmas :woman_shrugging:
She mite moan and complain but that’s prob just how she is and actually loves what you get her.
Her Brain clearly isn’t connected too well to her mouth when she starts moaning so just buy her a walking frame and hot water bottle this year and if she has something to say just tell her your stocking her up on stuff she’ll need in the nursing home soon :rofl: that will shut her up :woman_shrugging:

Make her a Homemade gift from the Grandchildren…
Look up #DIY crafts for Grandma.

For adults our family usually does cookies,pictures, and a candle that’s usually adults . We all try to focus on the kids. She is having a temper tantrum over something so petty… I’d let her throw it and leave her alone dont cave in apologize she actually owes you and your husband an apology for being this way either way I would enjoy your time this year.

We have so many kids,grandkids and great grandkids that we haven’t bought adult Christmas gifts in years.

1 Like

I wouldnt be helpin her at all anymore. She sounds very disrespectful. Just concertriate on ur husband n kids. U dont need some1 like that

1 Like

Stop worrying if she is being like this leave her to it… she is sulking and giving you the guilt trip. Enjoy your Christmas with your family and leave her alone plus if it’s bothering your husband he can sort everything out himself .

1 Like

She sounds like a narcissist. Dont even waste your time trying to please her. She probably enjoys everyone bending over backwards for her. You should look into the “grey rock” method for dealing with people like this. Try not to let her ruin your good holiday vibes :heart::christmas_tree:


Boy, everyone has that one family member. You keep being kindhearted, and realize you will never make her happy. She don’t even like herself. When they are no longer on this earth, you won’t feel like, could of, should have. You did your part

Honestly sounds like a family member of mine. Threw a fit because they didnt want what they got even though the family was struggling even verbally attacked people saying they wanted cash or gift cards. When told gifts wouldn’t be for the adults they went ape shit saying if u werent helping this person pay bills u would have money. Needless to say everyone gave like 5 dollar gift cards to shut them up that yr the next yr they didnt even show up.

Maybe the adults can buy a gender neutral gift (with a price limit) and draw numbers for them or play dirty santa. Everyone gets a gift and it’s not necessarily y’all not buying for her.


She’s a selfish person b word lol

What a petty bitch. I mean good grief. She needs to get over herself.

Don’t get her anything. Christmas shouldn’t be stressful and if you can afford to buy gifts for all 357899543 people in your family, go for it. If not, keep the spending to just your nuclear family. It’s more for the kids anyways, not grown ass adults to be fussy over. Your little family is what matters most during Christmas time. Cherish it and don’t let people like your mil ruin that.

It doesn’t matter what you buy her it ant going to be good enough. Get her a gift card from walmart that will shut her up. Lol

Omg I can’t stand her lol

Christmas is a holiday to be with family. In laws or blood. I’d be grateful for anything even if it was a gift card. I mean im not really sure, all the gifts youve given her sound great to me but if she wants personal, make an ornament using your kid’s handprint. Or a lockett with a picture of her grandkid. Both stuff she would be able to use and “have a place” for

I buy for my kids and then we have Christmas at my mom’s where I get my neice and nephew each a toy and outfit or something … I get my sister and her husband a gift card to one their favorite restaurant … As for my mom I have her gift me a list of things she likes or wants for Christmas and I’ll pick few things to get her.

I would forget about it and enjoy the peace without her complaints. I can imagine that wears on you after a while. Christmas is about PRESENCE not PRESENTS…


Sounds pretty childish. If she wants to be that way about whatever type of gifts you buy her, then quit buying her anything. She aint worth the time trying to find a gift that will please her.
Honestly if that was me I would go and buy a simple card, and write down a note about all the things you tried to buy for her and all the crap she had to say about those things and then end it with 'So I’ve decided since you dont like the gifts I’m buying, I am done trying to please you with any type of gifts at all. This is the last gift you will get from me. Happy holidays. Love so and so

1 Like

Be kind and inclusive (ie if something is being planned, let her know the plan) and then leave it up to her to participate or not. No attempts to persuade. She is an adult. And she is responsible for her own behavior and feelings. She is clearly not in a healthy emotional place (personality disorder, or something of the sort) and the more you work to “fix” it the more YOU will feel crazy. Just stick to your guns and stay above reproach.


Look you’re doing your part in getting her a gift, if she doesn’t like it oh well let her look like the ungrateful one. She wants to take you for granted, her loss. Not everyone is nice like you to think outside the box for your mother in law despite the bitter moments she’s causes you. No matter how hard you try with your mother in law you won’t win. All she cares about is being the center of attention and having people kiss her ass to feel good about herself. Learn your boundaries to talk to her when she talks to you, but don’t initiate conversations if you don’t have too. You’re in a relationship with her son, not her. Therefore smile and move on with not a care in the world of what she thinks about you’re gift. Darn if you get her a gift, darn if you don’t.

Have your kids make her something and have them give it to her for Christmas. Maybe she has a hard time at the holidays or maybe she feels like her son isn’t hers anymore. Feelings are touchy and you can help make it better not worse.


The fact someone expects a gift is insane smh

My mom made it very clear they are no longer buying Christmas gifts for everyone. 6 kids and 9 grand babies … I don’t blame her. No one is upset because that’s not what Christmas is all about. Your MIL really needs to get over herself.


Fuck her… yea I said what I said :woman_shrugging:t5:

Its not “all because she wants a gift”. Sounds like lots of factors. Why not do a $50 gift no matter what her response is and leave it at that.

Tell her Christmas is more for the kids. Adults shouldn’t expect presents


Woah. That’s crazy. Give her a smile and a hug for Christmas and move on.

We have a 30.00 cap on gifts. Last few years we drew names. This year we are doing dirty Santa. We still buy for the children. We have a themed night slso such as Christmas pjs, ugly sweater ect… We eat and play games. Taking the financial burden away makes a more enjoyable holiday

1 Like

Then don’t buy her anything. She sounds ungrateful

Christmas isn’t even about giving and receiving gifts. You shouldn’t have to stress out, or break your bank account trying to buy someone a gift. That’s ridiculous, it shouldn’t be something expected but appreciated IF someone goes out of their way to buy you a gift.


Don’t buy her anything.
You don’t reward bad behaviour in a child l, she is acting like a spoilt child. Don’t reward bad behaviour.


She sounds like a pain, you have literally tried everything and she’s still not happy. Just enjoy the time together as a family. It’s not all about the gifts.