This woman has a daughter and a niece who were born just 10 days apart. Because of this, her sister-in-law has always pushed for the girls to have a “shared” birthday party.
Paying for Everything
Additionally, the girls have completely different interests, with one being more of a tomboy and one being extremely girly.
When the girls were younger, Joanna and her husband agreed to the shared parties, but they soon realized that they were always the ones covering the costs for everything (food, decorations, location, etc.).
When Joanna informed her sister-in-law and her brother that they would no longer be participating in shared birthdays, it caused a significant disagreement.
Her brother and his wife expressed their frustration, stating that they couldn’t afford to throw a nice birthday party for their daughter, while Joanna could.
You Should Cover the Costs
They argued that it made sense for her and her husband to cover the costs since they are all “family.”
Unwilling to accept this arrangement, Joanna and her husband firmly stood by their decision.
Consequently, the girls have had separate birthday parties ever since.
Everything Was Planned for the Party
Joanna’s daughter and husband share a love of watching Formula 1 together, and she wanted to have a Formula 1-themed birthday party this year.
The weekend before the birthday, there was a family dinner at Joanna’s parents’ house, where her brother and wife were also in attendance.
An Awkward Subject
During the dinner, OP’s parents asked the girls if they were excited about their upcoming birthdays and if they planned to have parties this year.
Joanna’s daughter excitedly informed her grandparents that she would be having a Formula 1-themed party this year.
Meanwhile, the sister-in-law spoke on behalf of her daughter, explaining that they would not be hosting a party due to financial constraints.
The conversation did not proceed further on the topic.
The Party Gets Started
Fast forward to the past weekend, when Joanna’s daughter’s birthday party took place on Saturday.
The celebration was going smoothly, with the entire family invited, as per usual.
Everyone was enjoying themselves until the cake was brought out.
A Problem With the Cake
Joanna was in the kitchen with her mother, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and a few other family friends, chatting while preparing the cake to be served to the guests.
Upon seeing the cake, the sister-in-law appeared puzzled.
Her sister-in-law asked Joanna if the birthday cake was for both girls, seeing that only her daughter’s name was on the cake.
Joanna clarified that it was only for her daughter.
Her sister-in-law then expressed her assumption that Joanna would include her daughter in the celebration due to their financial situation.
Joanna, surprised by this, explained that they had never discussed this.
Her sister-in-law responded by accusing Joanna of being selfish for not including her daughter in the birthday celebration.
Causing a Scene
Her sister-in-law, upset by the conversation, stormed out of the kitchen and caused a scene at the party.
She yelled for her daughter, announcing that it was time to leave, and then they departed.
Since that incident, she has been continuously messaging Joanna and her husband, attempting to make them feel guilty about her daughter not having a birthday party and calling them various names.
Did She Do the Wrong Thing?
Joanna feels regretful that her niece won’t have a birthday party but wonders if she is at fault for not including her, considering her brother and his wife’s financial situation.
Reddit users commented on this thread, stating that Joanna was justified in only throwing a party for her daughter. They said it was not her job to ensure a party is planned for her niece or any other extended family member.
One wrote, “That’s up to her parents. If things are tight maybe they need to be creative but it’s still on them.”
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Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock / Roman Samborskyi. The people shown in the images are for illustrative purposes only, not the actual people featured in the story.
Source: Reddit. Names have been changed.