Here's Why One Pregnant Mom Isn't Letting Grandma Buy Baby Gifts
“My mother has a chronic habit of giving you something and then holding it over you.”
Sometimes a gift is more than a gift, apparently. A pregnant mom won’t let grandma buy baby gifts. Reddit user u/aitagma took to the sub-Reddit forum Am I The A**hole to explain why she won’t allow her mother to buy her baby presents even though the grandmother continues to try. And her reasons have social media users supporting her unusual decision.
The poster is expecting her first child, a girl, with her husband, and has an issue. “My mother has repeatedly offered to buy various things for the baby,” she wrote on Reddit last week, “and every time I have refused (politely).”
She went on to explain that she has two reasons why she doesn’t want her mom buying her baby presents. The first being that she had already received loads hand-me-downs from her sister-in-law, who had given birth to twins, and she and her husband can afford to buy baby items for themselves.
It was the second reason, however, that had Reddit users on her side. “My mother has a chronic habit of giving you something and then holding it over you to get you to do stuff,” the expectant mom wrote, “I've discussed this with her before and she refuses to acknowledge the problem so now I just don't let her give me stuff.” She went on to share examples of this behavior; the gift of a bread maker that saw demands for loaves every two weeks, for instance.
This poster’s continued refusal to allow her mom to “be a grandmother” through gift giving resulted in a social media post calling her out for being “mean and neglectful.”
When she reached out to Reddit to ask whether or not she was the a**hole in this situation, she got a strong response. Reddit user u/alalal982 noted that she was in the right, especially since reason two “is a massive issue. She can still be a grandmother without buying things for the baby, it's not as if you're taking that away from her.”
Reddit user u/KeepLkingForIntelligence agreed, “When i read 1, I thought Y T A - mom’s just excited let her be. But 2 - ooohhhh, dealbreaker.”
More than one social media user commented that they believed the grandmother could be a narcissist, like Reddit u/hello-mr-cat who called this a “classic” narcissist tool, “Holding everything over your head, from giving birth to you to any amount of money or gifts. They love to make you feel obligated and indebted to them.”
A 2016 Psychology Today article did note that people with narcisstic tendencies tend to give gifts with strings attached, as gift giving is a way to draw attention to themselves while giving the impression of being altruistic.
That being said, social media users have no clear way of knowing whether this grandmother is a narcissist, but it’s an interesting thought.
Ultimately expectant parents are the ones who get to decide whether or not they want people to buy presents for their children. No one else.