Returning a wedding gift to toxic person

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Should I send the check back or cash it

    Send the check back

    Cash it, send basic thank you

    Other (please explain)

  • Post # 32
    Member
    4973 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: November 1999

    View original reply
    beeanonymous0102 :  I wouldn’t cash the cheque at all but I’d just send her a generic thank you note. She’ll be checking her account to see what you do so I’d personally get a lot of joy thinking of her stewing and wondering what your plan was for a month or so.

    The other option was to use the money to hire an aeriel sign writer to write ‘sorry I didn’t invite your kids’ in the sky above her house!!🤣

    Post # 33
    Member
    1497 posts
    Bumble bee

    Wow, a few of the things you mentioned she has said to you deserve her being cut off for life. If I called someone to share my engagement news and their response was they are disappointed in me? I would have cut them out right then and there. 

    Why do you keep her in your life at all? Sounds like she doesn’t even have ties to your family anymore now that your grandpa is gone and since she didn’t even have a hand in raising your mom. 

    Personally id want the 500 bucks. I’d cash it and not ever speak to her ever again. I’d ignore her phone calls and act like she doesn’t exist. The other route would be to tear up the check and never tell her about it. Then also cut her off forever. That woman is bitter and nasty and life is too short for that crap. Plus you really want her to keep ruining all your happy moments? Like when you call to tell her your pregnant and she calls you fat or something? Cut her loose. 

    Post # 34
    Member
    526 posts
    Busy bee

    Yeah, I’d cash it, enjoy it in good health, and never contact her again. 

    She’s done enough damage. She’ll talk shit no matter what you do- 

    but here’s the thing: I guarantee you are not the only one she treats this way. Every person she’s going to talk shit about you to, has likely experienced her negativity, so I’m sure it won’t be any reflection on your character in others’ eyes that this bitter old woman is spewing her venom. And If anyone listened to her, so what?

    as a PP said, money is energy. That she sent it to you is some scrap of decency to repay you for all the crap she’s said to you, which is horrifically emotionally abusive. 

    I’d cash it, and tell her thank you, your gift paid for therapy we went to in order to forgive the cruel things you’ve said … 

    and forgive her. And tell her you forgive her and wish her more happiness in life. And then cut her off completely,  because forgiving doesn’t mean condoning. It’s just severing the cord of energy she’s draining from you , every time she says or does something to wound you that stays in your mind. 

    Cut ties. Spend the money and enjoy it. Move on. That poor bitter old woman will likely never know happiness. It must REALLY suck to wake up in her head in the morning. 

    Post # 35
    Member
    84 posts
    Worker bee

    Okay, I know this is going to sound horrible, but….how old is this person? I mean, how many years does she have left in her? I ask because once when I was complaining about an elderly toxic (racist, sexist, classist, narcissistic, etc.) relative of mine my mother basically said, “Relax, honey, he’s gonna be dead soon.” Her point wasn’t necessarily that I should look forward to the day he was no longer on the planet (I generally reserve that sentiment for war criminals, animal abusers, child molestors and *cough* Trump), but that I shouldn’t even waste energy struggling against his opinions when they would soon cease to have any influence. Grim, but oddly reassuring.

    She’s a horrible person and a fully formed adult. No gesture on your part is going to show her the error of her ways at this point. You have no obligation to worry about the opinions/reactions of someone who has treated you this way. Do something with the money that will replenish some of the joy she’s taken from you (the idea of a charity is a great one!).

    Post # 36
    Member
    69 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: May 2019

    RIP IT UP AND MOVE ON. No explanation needed.

    This toxic person is NOT worth your time and energy. This is the type of person that thrives on drama, so don’t give it to her. If you cash the cheque or send it back, you are feeding into her drama and keeping this relationship open. Completely shut her out of your life and don’t give it another thought.

    Life is too short to put up with this unnecessary BS.

    Post # 37
    Member
    76 posts
    Worker bee

    I’m Betty McPetty so I would cash the check and send a super sappy, passive aggressive thank you note:

    Just wanted to say thank you SO much for your kind and generous gift. It sure was a shame you and your sons couldn’t make it but I managed to have a fabulous time without you, though it was hard. It was a magical day for me and my husband. One we will cherish for the rest of our lives. Can’t wait to buy extra champagne during our honeymoon with your gift. 

    With Love,

    Your Step granddaughter

     

    Post # 38
    Member
    69 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: May 2019

    View original reply
    cmsgirl :  LOL YES!

    Post # 39
    Member
    982 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: August 2019

    I would send the check back, with a note explaining exactly why you are doing so, not mean, but not mincing words. Then I would cut her out of my life.

    To be honest, after your updated, I would have cut her out of my life long ago and wouldn’t have invited her to the wedding in the first place. It is probably a good thing that she is not going to the wedding, she’d just start more drama there and talk shit about it afterwards.

    Post # 41
    Member
    353 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    I would cash the check and then never talk to her again.

    Post # 42
    Member
    526 posts
    Busy bee

    View original reply
    beeanonymous0102 :  hahah that’s awesome. I love the ideas so far. I’d lean toward the PS4 myself 😉 

    A great wedding game! “who can think of the most outrageous way to spend $500?” You don’t have to tell them who gave you the $500. Haha. Might be fun xD

     

    Post # 43
    Member
    9195 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper

    View original reply
    beeanonymous0102 :  I’d cash it. She’s going to try to make you out to the bad guy regardless. Sure, if you cash it she’ll probably tell everyone how greedy you are. But if you send it back or throw it away, she’ll tell everyone how petty and disrespectful you are. In either case, who cares? Who is she going to tell that both A) believes her, and B) you care about? Anyone whose opinion you care about probably won’t believe her. And anyone who would believe her, you probably don’t care about. So cash it, send her a thank you note, and use it for something fun. Then cut her off, the witch.

    Post # 44
    Member
    359 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: November 2025 - City, State

    I lean toward the do nothing option.  Don’t cash it, don’t acknowledge it.  Let her wonder if you ever even received the card.

    She’s an awful person and you’re never going to win.  Full-on no contact should work better than anything else.

    …But if you do cash it, Planned Parenthood is an excellent option!  I’m sure she would be delighted if you made a donation in her name and she got added to their mailing list. 😀

     

    I do want to mention though, that you really shouldn’t have initiated a conversation about not inviting her sons.  It’s not polite to talk about who isn’t invited to an event.  By bringing up that they wouldn’t be invited, you implied the expectation that they should have been.  There’s no need to outright tell people that their loved ones aren’t important to you.

    Post # 45
    Member
    547 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    View original reply
    beeanonymous0102 :  Just a question regarding family dynamics.

    I understand that your mum didn’t grow up with her as a step-mum, but did you grow up with her as a grandmother to you?  Were her children considered uncles and aunties, or were the families kept pretty separate? 

    I wonder this, because if you did grow up with her children as Aunties and Uncles, I can kind of see where she is coming from.  It’s always rude to dictate someones guest list and she is unquestionably in the wrong, but I also have a bit of empathy for her if she genuinely cares for you and thought you saw her family as your family.  The way you’ve divided your guest list makes sense to me, but to her she may see it as the biological family is more important than non-blood, which given she married into your family, may be a sore spot. 

    I only play devils advocate because I think figuring out her perspective is helpful on deciding what to do. 

    I think the high road is best.  Regardless of this argument, she has given you a very generous gift.  I would cash the cheque, and use it on something like your honeymoon or a household item.  I would send a sincere thank you note for her gift, and regrets you will not see her at the wedding.  

     If you really suspect she may try to manipulate you with the money, cash it, but leave the money in your account.  If she then tries to guilt you because of her gift or something, write a cheque to her for the $500 and send it back.  She probably won’t cash it, but it means she won’t have a leg to stand on.   She can’t say you didn’t cash it, but she can’t use it to hold it over you either. 

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