Weddings and parents giving just the right gift.

for-saleI have a cousin who got married.  As a gift to him and his new wife his parents GAVE him 20 acres of land. To build their “dream home” on as the new daughter in law put it. Well 2 years later the daughter in law claims she is having issue’s with the in laws and no longer wants to live there. Remember, this land was given to him by his parents who got the land from her father and it’s been in the family forever.

So now the building plans are pitched out the window and she wants to look for a new place and move far enough away so the mother in law has to call first before coming over for a visit.  DId I tell you they have a little one year old daughter?  She is pulling her away from her grandparents too.

Well, she found a house, told her husband and they bought it and within 4 days it just turned out she knew someone who wanted to buy the house trailer and land where they were living and they sold it.  In all this time he never told his parents.  His mom goes to the store only to find out from the people who just bought her son’s trailer and land that she had given to him as a wedding gift and are moving in in 3 weeks.

Can you say “family feud????”  He has 2 other siblings and his parents told him he is out of the will and everything else will go to his siblings.  He is so torn between his wife and parents and I feel really sorry for him but in the same breath I think, “why in the heck didn’t you stand up to your wife and discuss this more with her?” He knows how much that land meant to his mom and family.  It has never belonged to outside hands.

Do you feel a gift is a gift or do you feel something like this is a little different and should have stayed in the family?  Maybe one of the other siblings would have been willing to buy it and it could have stayed in the family had they been aware of what was going on but the whole thing was done in secrecy and it was over and done with before anyone knew there were “issues.”  My aunt didn’t know the daughter in law had problems with her and everything seemed fine.  She can’t for the life of her figure out what happened.

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12 Responses to Weddings and parents giving just the right gift.

  1. SKL says:

    Wow. If you ask me, the guy had it coming to him. To do all that without even letting his parents know it was on his mind – either he is really dense or he knowingly hurt his parents for some reason. Or maybe he is just a total wimp and couldn’t stand up to his wife about anything. Because if he wanted to hurt his parents, why didn’t he just confront them about why his wife was unhappy? Maybe they could have worked something out, or like you said, figured out a way for the land to go to another relative, or even rented out the land for a while. Otherwise, he should have given the land back. I just couldn’t imagine taking something from my parents and then slapping them in the face with it. Talk about adding insult to injury – ripping out your parents’ heart and their gut at the same time. Sorry – you sound like you like this dude – but this is just too much for me.

  2. That’s horrible. That is truly so so sad. I mean, it was the parent’s land! And shouldn’t adult human beings TALK about their feelings and problems before going and tearing a huge rip in the family canvas? Man, the wife must have had some pretty huge issues with her inlaw… But I just feel so sad for the parents who didn’t even know all this was going on under their noses. Seems just wrong to me :(.

  3. kwoneshe2 says:

    I’m with the others here. The land should not have been sold to an outsider without discussing it with the family first. For whatever reason, the daughter in law didn’t want to live there, and that is fine. My ex mother in law & I didn’t get along. But to just take property that was not only a gift, but had been in the family for years, and sell it???

  4. Laura (LS) says:

    Unforgivable. First off, if there’s a problem with parents, it’s up to the child of those parents to bring the problem to the table. He should have brought his parents into it when she decided that she wanted to live elsewhere. As others have said, the land could have been given back; an agreement could have been reached wherein the land was rented out, perhaps the profits split between the couple and the parents; the land could have been deeded or sold to the siblings. Something other than selling it out from under the family. You can’t get that back.

    AND, she should never have been so petty – no matter how much she disagreed or disliked her in-laws – as to give away treasure that was never hers in the first place.

    Shameful. And sad.

  5. Jane says:

    Wow, this gets me all riled up!!! Land is so valuable to me. Our land is ours and it’s almost a part of us. I can’t even begin to imagine that this guy did this. I don’t really feel it’s fair to blame the young wife either. Young people sometimes get goofy idea’s in their heads but this “man” should have said “No way Jose” when his wife brought this up.

    Most of us have disagreements from time to time but you don’t sell land that’s been in the family this way. We were given our land too but selling it would never even be talked about. I don’t know if I’d say it’s been drilled into our heads or if we just value the tradition of loving our land or what but this is unthinkable to me. I can go almost anywhere and have memories of learning to ride my bike or skinny dipping in the gravel pits or even sitting near the pond and reading a book. It’s ours.

    This makes me want to put some kind of a codicil in our will for when our kids are old enough to be married and on their own when they get their land because some people can be very persuasive. Our land must remain in our family.

    I feel ill for this mother because our land is like a part of us.

  6. mssc54 says:

    I didn’t read the other comments because I didn’t want to be swayed. So forgive me if this is redundant.

    The bottom line is… a gift is a gift. A gift is given out of love.

    The big issue here seems to be communication. This family is not communicating or maybe the MIL was just sticking her nose in way too much. If she did not respect the daughter in law’s privacy IN THEIR HOME then she almost earned what happened.

    The next to the biggest issue is… I’m stunned this young couple has a child. The reason for my surprise is that I know of no medical information that allows a man to impregnate a woman without testicals. It sure sounds like guy does not have any!

    First of all (although he is not required to do so) he should have let his mother know that they need their space and too not visit unanounced.

    Secound, he should have communicated with his wife on how to handle this before it got to the point where they sold out.

    Third, he should have definately given his family the first rights of refusal to buy the property.

    It sounds like there is enough “blame” to go around on all sides.

  7. Joy says:

    This is a tough one. I agree with mssc to a certain degree that a gift is a gift. But sometimes you give a “gift” not only out of love but out of someone else’s need that you may have and not need at that time. We also gave land away and if my son and daughter in law decided to sell it and not tell us, I would be madder than a wet hen. Not because of the money and not because it’s a family heirloom but out of consideration to us that they would be putting strangers on top of us. We don’t live close enough to even walk (you could walk if you wanted to but none of us do) but we can see it and I wouldn’t want anyone there but one of my kids. If the day comes for us to sell this land, they would have first chance to buy it. It’s called consideration. I don’t know about that mother in law but for me, I never go down to Toby and Sue’s. I can count on my fingers how many times I’ve gone down there other than if we get invited for supper or a birthday party or bonfire. I never just “pop” in on them.

    I’ve also given my kids other things in life that I wouldn’t really care what they did with it but for example, I gave Jason and Nikki a car I really liked. A lot. Because I didn’t need it and they did and Jason loved the car as well. I also told them that I wouldn’t want them to ever sell it. I wouldn’t have bought it at all except for the fact that I loved the car and it reminded me of my first car that I got from my dad so to me, if they sold it after knowing that I said that, I wouldn’t be pleased. Again, it has nothing to do with money. Sometimes you get something for other reasons.

    But land is land and I know like Jane mentioned, is just a part of your family. It’s almost like a person and it would really have bothered me. Also the big “secret.” That would gall me to find out like that in a store. When your kept in the dark about something this important, it makes you feel like a dummy.

  8. Jane says:

    I believe that some things go without saying. I don’t think this mother should have had to say “if you ever want to sell it, let us buy it back.” I think she loved that land and was passing it down to her family. I feel what this kid did was just plain disgraceful. He knew what it meant to his mom and his family. Otherwise, why did he keep it such a big secret?

    I have my grandmothers wedding ring and nobody ever told me I couldn’t sell it but my family knows I never would. It goes without saying. This mother probably thought her son would love it as much as she did and would pass it on to her granddaughter. This is how it usually goes when you have big chunks of land. Maybe “city” people don’t feel the same way about their land.

    I also would agree that if you give someone something that they need and they know what it means to you, it would be very ungrateful to sell it knowing the sentiment that someone else feels over it. I feel this is called respect and gratitude.

  9. mssc54 says:

    Everyone keep in mind, the mother raised her son. She instilled the “values” he holds. To some degree she is reaping what she’s sown.

    One day the son will realize his imaturity.

    It took 8 years to settle my dad’s megar estate. There wasn’t much land left in his portion of the original over a century old sugar cane plantation. In the beginning I had to have “mine”. In the end I saw the destruction that plot of dirt caused. Its like it is filled with “generational curses” I told my 5 siblings & mom jut to let my destitute cousin have “mine”.

    That’s been a couple of years ago & I am at such peace knowing how they are blessed with “my” inheritance.

    I lack for nothing & live to love, give & serve. 🙂

  10. nikki says:

    This is complete disregard for anyone but themselves. That land was to be left for further generations to enjoy, and to have “something” to pass down is so important. Joy, I’ll be completely honest with you right now, we’ve had many offers to trade or sale that car. Even a second of thinking about it made my stomach turn. I know what that car means to you and what it represents. I could never do that to you. Then again I have respect and regard for others feelings. This is really sad what they did, and to keep it a secret?? A gift is a gift, normally with no stipulations, do what you wish with it. But this so much more that just a gift, it is history, memories, a legacy. They should have been grateful for that, I would be. My family has nothing to pass down other than my grandmother jewelry which I hope to get some. You can believe me when I say I would never sell it, it is disgraceful!!

  11. SKL says:

    I just don’t think family land falls into the “a gift is a gift” category. Especially not land that is adjacent to that of other family members.

    Then too, I’m a little more sentimental about gifts in general. If someone put thought into a gift for me, I am loath to dispose of it unless I can do so without that person ever being the wiser. I still feel badly about having lost a couple pieces of jewelry that my parents bought for me 20 years ago.

    Bottom line – someone intentionally hit a parent where it would really hurt. Santa is gonna leave coal in his stocking for many years.

  12. nikki says:

    LOL yes for sure on the naughty list!!!

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