Gift from estranged SIL…what to do?

posted 3 years ago in Family
  • poll: What should we do?
    Return it. : (15 votes)
    23 %
    Send a standard thank-you note. : (30 votes)
    46 %
    Call to give thanks. : (6 votes)
    9 %
    Ignore it. : (14 votes)
    22 %
  • Post # 2
    1314 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: June 2018 - Omaha, NE

    I vote just rip it up and throw it away. You already said you can’t cash it without it bouncing anyways, and sending it back would still be a response, which will only invite further communication. I think this was absolutely a narcissistic attempt to make her look virtuous. As if writing a huge check that will bounce actually achieves that goal lol! I agree with your eye roll!

    Post # 3
    738 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2013

    Without knowing her it’s really difficult to say what her intentions where. Your Darling Husband is understandably upset with her, but do you think their relationship can get resolved eventually? I would take the card/gift at face value and give her the benefit of the doubt (even if you can’t cash it) and send a thank you card. Maybe try to use the thank you card as a way to initiate a conversation about everything? Good luck.

    Post # 4
    2856 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: April 2016

    I wouldnt just rip up the check without telling her. Do you know how annoying it is to wait for a check to clear your account? I would have Darling Husband decide what he wants to do about it since its his sister. But honestly, I would just cash the check and thank her.

    Post # 5
    4238 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2015 - Hotel Ballroom

    I’d try to cash it first. If its ‘good’ then I’d write a nice thank you note. This very well could be an olive branch. I understand why your Darling Husband doesn’t want to have anything to do with them right now…but if she is trying to make it right I’d give her the chance.

    However….If it bounces I’d write a tactful ‘your cheque bounced’ note. At least that way she wont think she has the ‘high ground’ of you ignoring her gift….which could only fuel the fire down the road. Normally I’m not about passive agressive notes, but it’s better to let her know right? I mean, what if she IS trying to make right and made a mistake with the cheque?

    Post # 7
    6231 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: June 2015

    Am I understanding that this was the sister who was talked into not going? She may now be regretting her decision and hope to make amends. If you got along well before, send a note, leave the ball in her court.

    I probably wouldn’t cash the check either… don’t want to be charged for a bounce. You could still send it back… thanks for your generosity but we simply can’t accept under these circumstances. Want to get together to discuss sometime?  That way as pointed out, she won’t be waiting on it clearing 

    Post # 8
    1690 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2016

    A similar thing happened to me and I’m also unsure of what to do. I haven’t spoken to my grandfather in several years after getting tired of what a dink he was to my mum. Then my aunt gave me a card from him at my wedding with a large cheque and a pretty lame note. It was also stuffed with random family photos and a newspaper article about some honour he received… trying to prove he’s a good person, I guess? Right now I’m just ignoring it, and obviously not depositing the cheque. I think if it was truly an ‘olive branch’, it would have been at least a phone call, and would have included an apology. If I just sit on it, I figure that I can still make a more impactful decision later, or, I could not, and either way would be just fine.

    Post # 9
    799 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2015

    Thank her and don’t cash it in.

    Post # 10
    2819 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    ironmaidelah :  if you’re wondering what to do with the sister you used to get along with here’s what I’d do: write her a note/message/email saying you received her card and just wanted to say thanks for that. Tell her you guys missed her very much at the wedding and hope that now that the dust has settled you can resume your friendship as it was before. Also tell her that her gift was very much appreciated but neither you nor your Darling Husband feel like it would be right to cash it in so that you’ll return it to her with no hard feelings. 

    That way, you return the gift, don’t get charged for anything that bounced, draw some boundaries (yes we can start over but don’t think that everything’s fine), burn the drama sister for creating a rift AND come out looking like the even spirited/tolerant one.

    Post # 12
    2556 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: August 2014

    I would cash the hell out of that check, and if it bounced I would relish the hit on her bank account that that would cause.  I’d probably send her a thank you card thanking her for attending the wedding because oh, you weren’t there?  I didn’t even notice, I was too busy having a freaking blast, sorry you missed it I guess…

    Or I’d want to do those things but end up taking the high road and ignoring it altogether.  I’m so much more vindicitive in my mind than I am in real life.

    Post # 13
    733 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: August 2016

    ironmaidelah :  it sounds like an olive branch. The other sis in law sounds quite self absorbed, but it sounds like they are trying to make amends. I’d recommend sending a thank you and keeping your distance. What they did is hurtful, so by keeping your distance for awhile you can maintain emotional boundaries. Sending a thank you note is classy. It’s never wrong to send one for a gift and then the estrangement isn’t on you. You don’t have to look at this gift as buying you off, especially if you aren’t cashing it. I’d see it as an opportunity to be the bigger person and look classy, even if a big check won’t mend fences. I’d also see it as opening ties for a possible apology down the line. It may be hard to call an angry sib, but a bit easier to admit wrong doing to a more friendly SIL. 

    I understand needing an appology. My Mother-In-Law created havoc when I was hospitalized right before our wedding. She w a just plain evil and even my Darling Husband admits it. She actually pulls a Donald Trump when asked to apologize and pretend she has dementia (it’s a very bad act, so don’t worry, she is ok). I recognize I’m never going to get one, and my Darling Husband recognizes we don’t want our kids to spend time with people who are cruel like that. It’s her loss, but I know we need to meet her where she is. I’m stuck with her, and we will see her at funerals, Xmas and t day and that is it. It’s really her loss.

    Post # 14
    1604 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    If she lives near you, you can go to HER bank  They can cash it, “hammer it” (check to see if funds, then turn into a certified check), or tell you insufficient funds. 

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