Post # 1
Bees, I’m in a delicate situation. Mother-In-Law is a packrat. Alright I exaggerate, she’s not a hoarder but she has things in her home from when hubs was a baby. He’s 37. I don’t mean some blankets and clothes, I mean his crib, high chair, room decor and on and on. In addition, she has all this stuff that she has purchased for him that’s never been used but she has saved for 15+ years for whatever reason (rugs, cushions, a valet chair, etc). Why he never got them from her I don’t know.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of using my husband’s crib but I don’t want ALL of the stuff. And the majority of it is NOT our taste. I feel bad telling her we don’t want it (hubs won’t tell her) because she has held onto it for upteen years waiting to give it to him, now us. Why? I have no clue.
I should say I’m the total opposite. I don’t keep shit. If I don’t use it, it’s gone. Every season I throw out whatever clothes I didn’t wear and I am like that in all facets of my life. I don’t keep stuff just to keep it. So it is a stretch for me to keep taking this stuff in that I don’t want in the house. Nor do I have a place for it.
What would you do?
Post # 3
old baby stuff (like cribs, high chairs, car seats, etc.) can be dangerous. i wouldn’t use it.
the rest of the stuff, i’d say no thanks, we have no where to put it.
Post # 4
He needs to put on his big boy pants and tell her, even though he doesn’t want to. How horrible of him to force you to be in the middle with his mom!
Old baby furniture is dangerous. Just tell her you guys want to get stuff with the latest safety features and that you don’t have room for the other stuff!
Post # 6
My grandma was a hoarder. kind of, she wasnt filthy, she just kept everything, my Mom would always say just take whatever she gives you so we can get it out of her house, my grandma never came to visit us though as she was older and we would always make the trip to see her, so she would never know we donated or threw away whatever she gave us.
In your situation though I’m assuming your Mother-In-Law will know you’ve gotten rid of her things, therefore I personally would decline anything she offered unless I really needed it.
Post # 7
I forgot to mention we are NOT, I repeat NOT expecting.
Post # 8
I second the idea of some of the stuff not being up to current safety standards.
I would suggest you set up a night where you and dh go over for dinner and have a lovely “memory lane” evening where you go through the stuff together, pick out the most special stuff and send the rest to the appropiate disposal avenue.
Post # 9
Commenting to see advice. My in laws (and grandparents in law) are like this too, and it drives me crazy!
“I don’t keep shit. If I don’t use it, it’s gone.” –> yes, this is me too!
I tried to tell them not to give us so much stuff, and so has Darling Husband, but that’s only had limited success. Up until now I’ve just been quietly sneaking stuff off to the Salvation Army. I feel kinda bad, but then, there’s nothing that drives me crazier than having stuff sitting around that I don’t use or like. Shouldn’t I get to decide what I have in my own personal dwelling? *ranting*
Post # 10
I thought my Mother-In-Law was bad!
I can understand your husband not wanting to tell her and I don’t think it’s so horrible. I agree with Sapphire. Take some time to look through stuff and tell her the rest you wont be taking. You can explain how you are really looking forward to buying certain things just that way she did.
Post # 11
@NJmeetsBX: sorry I started laughing when I read that! I was thinking “old baby stuff .. dangerous … what would you do with all the stuff you don’t want … oh you’re not expecting.”
Post # 12
OH BOY. No advice for you but I am in a very similar situation. My Future Mother-In-Law gave us a box of sh*t from when she cleaned out her closet. One item I am expected to hang up on my wall: a framed certificate explaining the origin of her maid name. This is only one example of the sh*t she has given us over the years. Let’s just say that I am very clumsy and stuff gets broken frequently…wink wink
Post # 13
I’d take some things to make her feel like she did a good deed, and I’d upcycle the shit out of it.
Post # 14
Agree with the others, check the safety on any baby equipment before you use it. (Usually with cribs, it’s things like springs, bars being too wide, dangerous metal parts.)
I think you should arrange a time to go over with your husband and decide what of these things he wants, and offer to take the rest to charity or put them on ebay/craigslist for her.
Post # 15
@crayfish: In his defense, I think he just feels the way I do. What do you tell someone that held on to something for all that time? “You wasted your time and space and I don’t want your crap.” But that’s what it will come down to.
@Aicyla22: She’ll be around so she will know if it’s missing. ha! ha! I have been pretty good about declining some stuff but it just.keeps.coming.
@Jer72: @SapphireSun: @Elvis: I like that idea. Problem is, hubs is half-packrat too. So it may not end up being beneficial for ME.
@StuporDuck: I did take her old christmas decorations and our theme will be vintage christmas this year!
All, yes, I know old baby stuff is dangerous. Did I mention we are NOT expecting? LOL!
I feel bad because she seems so excited to give us the stuff. Like this has been her dream for it for 37 years!
Post # 16
Don’t let her fool you…my Mother-In-Law is a packrat and she says she holds onto stuff for her kids to use but it is because she cannot part with it. She will then use her inability to part with stuff by putting it in your house. Tell her you want just a few things (as in his favorite toy or blankie) but that the rest is too much and may not be safe. Get hubby to have this talk or gently say it when she brings it up.