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would a other grans be hurt by this

(115 Posts)
etheltbags1 Mon 27-Oct-14 10:27:51

The other day one of my best friends was very upset, her youngest daughter has a nine month old baby and my friend goes regularly to visit. she has been told to phone or text and is not welcome to drop in.
I can understand to a certain extent that the young mother likes to have the house tidy for visitors but she should allow her own mother to drop in.
My friend is the worlds best recycler, she buys all sorts of stuff second hand, jumpers she re-knits, scraps of wood she hoards, she climbs on skips to claim furniture which she recovers etc etc. She also buys second hand baby clothes and toys.

Her daughter has told her that every baby item she brings must have a price tag on it or it will be binned (in case its second hand).

My friend had taken a new shawl and baby clothes and her daughter had refused to take them as she had taken off the price tag, these were new but she could not prove it. She eventually gave the stuff to someone else who was grateful.
My friend was really upset at this apparent clothes snobbery. Would other grans agree that this is unnecessary. I have not given second hand clothes but have bought some used toys (plastic scrubs up well) fro my granddaughter but my daughter had lots of used stuff when she was little.

Marty Mon 27-Oct-14 10:33:12

I would be very hurt by this. I have never read such nonsense.

tanith Mon 27-Oct-14 10:37:47

I think I would know what was acceptable to my daughters and if I had an ungrateful daughter such as your friend I wouldn't even bother with the second hand stuff if that is the daughters preference... I feel sorry for your friend but if she already knew her daughter was likely to make a silly fuss then why on earth did she risk it and take the labels off?

Having said that I agree with you that there is nothing wrong with accepting and using second hand stuff but some people just aren't comfortable with it and I guess that's their choice.. but what a shame to spoil a grandmothers enjoyment of their grandchild the daughter could of just accepted the clothes in good grace even if she wasn't going to use them.

henetha Mon 27-Oct-14 10:42:10

Do you mean that your friend is not allowed to visit her daughter and new baby at all, or not allowed to drop in unannounced?
I've never had that lovely mother/daughter experience which I so envy, having only sons myself, so it was a little different with my daughters in law when they had babies. I would never dream of dropping in unannounced, but always phone first. I still do actually.
Regarding the clothes etc, I am a great fan of charity shops, skips, boot sales etc, but only for myself. I would never give a baby anything but brand new, clothes or toys.
It does seem that the new mother is being a bit over-sensitive though, being like this with her own mother. But then, maybe mother/daughter relationships are not always as lovely as I fondly imagine them to be.
I can understand your friend is upset and do hope it works out alright.

etheltbags1 Mon 27-Oct-14 10:45:10

I agree tanith, I was given many second hand clothes for my DD but some were just horrible but I accepted they were given with kind intent and I either returned them saying they were a bit too small or just passed them on to a jumble sale.
I remember once, I passed on a bag of used baby stuff to a neighbour whose daughter was pregnant and the neighbour returned to my door and threw the bag inside telling me that her daughter wanted no second hand stuff for her baby (it was all good stuff too). I was very wary since then about giving used stuff.

etheltbags1 Mon 27-Oct-14 10:48:13

she is allowed to visit but only on appointment, Henehta, which she does not like but the mother is now back at work and so time is limited.
I always ask if I can go to my DD but my mother says its wrong and that families should drop in. This being the old fashioned way.
I can only sympathise with my friend.

henetha Mon 27-Oct-14 10:55:41

Every family is different, I suppose. I think dropping in is probably done less these days.
I used to be a great knitter, and was very hurt when one of my daughter's in law told me that she did not want any hand-knitted garments for her babies, only shop bought things! I had no choice but to obey....

FarNorth Mon 27-Oct-14 11:29:52

Maybe the daughter has had a bellyful of wearing second-hand clothes when she was young, and possibly being picked on by other kids because of it, and she wants none of it for her baby? Just a guess.

If the DD wants to feel in control of her life by having her mother contact her first before turning up, then I see no problem with that. I don't think it will be just that she wants her house to be tidy for visitors but that she doesn't want to feel "invaded" unexpectedly.

I can sympathise with the Gran's point of view on these things, but I think it is the daughter's right to say what is acceptable to her in her own home.

hildajenniJ Mon 27-Oct-14 11:51:07

My DD would not be offended in the least with second-hand clothing or toys. She has bought bundles of baby clothes from people online, and picked out the best, to keep for her DC, and sent the rest to charity shops or recycling centres.
She was a young Navy wife with four small children and money was tight. I think that if the friend's daughter was in a similar position, she might think differently, and be more grateful.
As it is, I would continue to respect her wishes, I'm assuming that she only has the one child.
I never just popped in, even when my daughter lived just ten minutes walk away. I always phoned to let her know I was coming, and find out if it was convenient to call.
I crochet, and always ask my DD if she would like handmade clothes for her DC. I show her the pattern and the wool before beginning. Her little boys always looked smart and warm in Granny's hand made sweaters.

annodomini Mon 27-Oct-14 12:21:52

I was glad to receive a cot from my SiL whose girls were older than my two boys. My DiL searched Ebay for children's clothes and got some lovely dresses for DGD. When a new bit of school/scout/cubs uniform is needed, she goes round her friends to see if their kids have outgrown any items. My other son's partner was happy to receive hand-me downs from GC1 for her two boys. Surely this has always happened in families - even relatively affluent ones like these! Or am I still hung up on the make-do-and-mend era in which I was brought up? A good friend bought men's used shirts from jumble sales and made little suits for DS1 when a sudden heat wave arrived before I could get round to buying summer clothes.

suzied Mon 27-Oct-14 12:27:24

How hard is it to text or phone before visiting? I wouldn't just drop in unannounced if I could easily avoid it.

glammanana Mon 27-Oct-14 12:46:10

My DD would gladly accept secondhand clothes & uniforms when the children where all at school,the only things she objected to was the offer of shoes & underwear.My DGCs where always immaculate when going anywhere and no one was aware that they wore hand me downs,specially school uniforms blazers that cost £40.00 new where bought from the school shop for a donation of £5.00 made the difference to the household budget and if you where to have two football mad boys who used their blazers as goalposts the school shop came in quite handy indeed.
ethel your friend may have to wait and see if her daughters opinion changes when she has 2 or 3 children hmm
Regarding visiting if the mum is back at work I can understand why she maybe need to keep to a routine and arrange for visitors,you just have to be kept half an hour longer than expected and your evening schedule is up the wall or you week-end arrangements made late.

Purpledaffodil Mon 27-Oct-14 12:58:28

DD and I are very close and she lives nearby, but I would never drop in unannounced. Also prefer to text rather than phone because it is less intrusive. I feel it is acknowledging that she is a grown up with her own life? Thinking about it, she never drops in unannounced on us either.
The second hand stuff is a minefield. I do think the DD on the OP was appallingly rude and lacking in social skills. However as other posters have hinted, perhaps being the daughter of a keen recycler has left its scarssmile. I have a dear friend whose mother was a keen home dressmaker and she swore no child of hers would ever have home sewn clothes and they never did!

tiggypiro Mon 27-Oct-14 12:59:17

Crikey ! If my DD didn't want 2nd hand stuff then her kids would have very little. Just this morning I have got a lovely almost new pair of 'Next' trousers for one of them at a cost of £1.75. I once got a lovely fleece jumper for £4 which had a 'label'. I googled it and the jumper would have been over £40 new !!!!! And it was hardly used !
When they come here they sleep in a 2nd hand cot, with 2nd hand bedding and use 2nd hand toys. I am racking my brains to try and think what I have here for them that is new. I would much rather have money spare to put in their bank accounts.
As for letting them know when I am coming - I need to buy a flight so they have plenty of notice! I think if they were in spitting distance I would ring beforehand just to make sure they would be in but would not like to be making an appointment.
I wonder what the young mum in the post will do with everything that her child grows out of. Keep it for a 2nd child ? Sell it on ebay ? Give it away ? Will it be ok for someone else to have her castoffs or is it all going in the bin ?

FarNorth Mon 27-Oct-14 13:08:02

Lots of people are saying how great second-hand clothes etc can be.
I agree with you all but I did not offer anything second-hand for my GC until I knew that their parents were happy with that.
The young mum in the OP is entitled to her views and should have them respected, although possibly she was a little tactless with her mother. What she will choose to do with outgrown clothes is no-one business of anyone else.

FarNorth Mon 27-Oct-14 13:09:12

no business of anyone else, I should have said.

janerowena Mon 27-Oct-14 13:11:42

My daughter doesn't mind at all, but her OH's family are all very insistent on new. Three sisters, all desperate to shake off their mother's bargain-hunting. They said that even baby clothes have fashions and some of the clothes their Mum was buying were years out of date.

annodomini Mon 27-Oct-14 13:18:33

Ah, FarNorth, if such things were none of our business, would we ever have lively discussions on Gransnet? grin

vegasmags Mon 27-Oct-14 13:54:06

I quite agree with the idea of visiting by arrangement as I don't like unannounced visitors myself. My DD and her group of friends have regularly swopped maternity clothes, baby equipment and clothing, but I personally would never give anything that wasn't new. I like to knit and sew and have made lots of things for the new arrival in our family, which have been well received. Like other posters, I suspect this particular DD has suffered in the past at the hands of her recycling parent, and has perhaps decided that enough is enough.

Coolgran65 Mon 27-Oct-14 14:00:48

My son and DIL live abroad. When their baby was on the way my DS suggested I make up a box of anything I could think of that dgs would need for the first few weeks. He knew I would really enjoy choosing for dgs and wanted me to be involved as much as possible given the distance.

Important to me was that I did not order on line and arrange direct delivery. I knew that I'd want to personally have handled what was being sent...making it more personal. That I would have 'touched' what my new dgs was going to wear.

I sent muslin cloths, a thermometer, many clothes, bibs etc etc. Three parcels cost me £70 to post. It was worth the postage to be so included.

However, the main point is........what he did say was...... ''they don't have to be new mum. And if X or Y or Z have outgrown stuff, that's grand.''

Other dgc living here sent over a favourite soft toy, a favourite blanket.

OP has made me realise how lucky I am.

I don't call in with local dgc unannounced but am sure that we'd be made welcome if we did. Made welcome probably because we don't actually do it.

I do think that daughter of OP friend is not considering her mother's feelings. Unless there is a background which we are unaware of.

Sorry for long post.

Eloethan Mon 27-Oct-14 14:01:11

I think it's fair enough to ask a parent, relative or friend to give a little bit of notice before visiting, if only to check that it's convenient - and I would definitely do so if it had been specifically requested.

My own son and his partner, and my daughter are fairly laid back about such things and wouldn't expect me to visit "by appointment only" but I would normally ring to check whether they're, for instance, planning to go out, are in the middle of eating/cooking, or are especially busy.

However, I think your friend's daughter's attitude towards second hand clothes seems on the face of it most rude and unpleasant. I was very happy when my friends gave me clothes for my children which their children had grown out of. In the past I did occasionally buy charity shop clothes for myself and my children - still do for myself. I mostly buy new clothes for our grandchildren but I have given charity shop clothes (and toys/books) to my grandchildren when I have found something of particularly good quality and in good condition - I launder/thoroughly clean them first. They are always appreciated and I have seen the children wearing the clothes/playing with the toys.

Is there a possibility that your friend "popped in" a little too often and - when she did visit - didn't pick up "cues" that indicated it was time to leave? Is it also possible that she gave second hand clothes that were in poor condition? As someone else said, perhaps her daughter has had experience as a child of having to wear noticeably well-worn and unattractive clothes. A little diplomacy and kindness on her daughter's part wouldn't go amiss though.

Mishap Mon 27-Oct-14 14:02:55

First time mums eh? - give it time, go with the flow; it will all come out in the wash.

thatbags Mon 27-Oct-14 15:17:01

I agree that the clothes snobbery is awful. However, I wonder if the young mum is just tired of her mother's extreme recycling and has resorted to this apparently unreasonable behaviour because nothing else she has said to her mother has got through? It does rather sound as if, just possibly, your friend has a bit of a hobby horse attitude and her daughter is sick of being lectured.

I have friends, a couple, where I've seen a similar thing happening, which is why I wonder if it's similar in your friend's case. The husband is getting really fed up with the wife's attitude to food and all the food 'rules' she imposes on him. He's being unreasonable as these 'rules' of hers have helped his health a great deal. But the wife does rather go on....

thatbags Mon 27-Oct-14 15:21:21

I wouldn' be hurt by being asked to ring or text before visiting though. I expect to do that anyway with anyone, family or not.

I'd shrug off the clothes thing too and just not give her any more. Wouldn't buy new stuff either. Someone that ungrateful doesn't deserve presents and I don't suppose the child will suffer because if it would the mum would accept secondhand, clean, good quality clothes.

granjura Mon 27-Oct-14 15:44:47

what thatbags said. I know one woman who goes to spend most of the day at her daughter's EVERY day- and it is just not on. If the mother keeps making comments about cost of new clothes, wrong to buy new clothes, etc, etc,- then perhaps enough is enough. Only your friend- and perhaps you, know whether her own behaviour has caused this extreme reaction, or not. Hope they can find a middle way that suits all.