Total Birthday Bummer- WWYD?

pecanpieMarch 29, 2007

Either commiserate and offer sympathy or give me a virtual slap upside my ungrateful head if you feel it's warranted. Here goes. ..

I just celebrated my big 5-0 and I use the term 'celebrated' loosely. DH told me 'happy birthday' that morning but treated it as a total non-event. No gift, no dinner out. No nothing. Nada. I am flummoxed.

He has had a card and presents for every other birthday. Dinner- well, long ago he told me if I wanted to be taken out to dinner on my birthday I shouldn't have been born during baseball pre-season! I took that in good humor, the way it was intended, but this year I see very little humor in this situation.

In our circle of friends, most of the men have turned 50, and many of the women are celebrating their half-century marks this year. It's been a big deal all around- most host a happy hour come-and-go or dinner for their spouses, several have sent their better halves(?) for getaway weekends or spa retreats and there is always a lot of girl-talk about "What did you get?" Great! So how do I answer THAT?

On DH's Big One, I gave him a surprise party and his gift was a photo safari - something he has always wanted to do. He was flattered to be the center of attention and ecstatic about the safari- and I was so pleased to be able to do it for him. In no way do I expect the same from him, but I'm shocked that he totally ignored it. Also, we still have a child at home and I think ignoring a spouses's life event is a terrible example to set.

I have a very thick hide and do not get my feelings hurt easily, but I am devestated. I have not spoken to him about it yet because I need to calm down. I have a self-imposed rule about speaking when I'm upset because I have a hot temper and a sharp debater's tongue that will take off on its own otherwise.

It's been a couple of weeks and I'm still very very sad. Am I making a mountain out of a molehill?

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday Pecanpie!!

You're gonna have to be careful on this one. My perspective - maybe DH took the easy way out. You know, damned if you do and damned if you don't. Some folks go ballistic with big birthday events and he didn't know what to do and, as a result, did nothing. You have to admit we guys are knuckleheads much of the time.

Since this is important to you, bring it up to him and let him know it hurt that he missed it. Hopefully, it was a simple misunderstanding.

BUT - you are stating you have a very thick hide but are upset Hubby blew it? These statements are mutually exclusive to me. Worried that that girl talk about "What did you get?" will put you in a corner? Really now - it escapes me how this type of conversation is considered proper or even friendly.

That said though - I do wish you a happy Big 5-0 and many more!


    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 10:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Belated Birthday Pecanpie! I would be hurt, too if my DH did not do anything for my 50th birthday. I definitely think you should let your husband know how you feel. While it's fine to make jokes about it being pre-season baseball, he surely has time to take you out to celebrate some day close to your birthday. I wouldn't worry about what others think. I am also in a group where many of the men turned 50 in the last few years and many of the women in the last year or so. People have done everything from a big party to nothing, and no one in my crowd thinks anything about what others have done. I am turning 50 in May, and because of my kids' exam schedules and other issues, I don't know when I will have a celebration. But, I am sure DH will do something. At least I hope so!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 10:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I empathise completely. My DH husband can do some extraordinarly romantic and thoughtful things and other times when he can't come up with a good idea, does nothing. I have never gotten used to this. In my case, I admit that I can be a little childish about birthdays. I want a package to open, darn it. A coupon is just not the same thing, LOL.

I think you should tell him how you feel, even if it makes him feel bad. Be ready with how he can "fix" it or make it up to you, say, a belated birthday surprise in two weeks.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 11:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday! Your DH blew it. Blew it big time. 5-0 is big and should be treated accordingly. Not, "blowout party" if you are not blow out party people. However, the day needed to be recognized in a way that he thought you would have liked. As in, "I think my wife would like to go out to dinner and get a nice necklace, even though I don't particularly like to go out to dinner or wear jewelery." He should have thought about you. Should have done something - even a little thing- for you. Even if the "thing" wasn't the "right" thing, at least he would have tried. He blew it.

You have two choices. First is to sit him down and explain to him that he hurt your feelings. Explain to him that although you know he loves you, he made you feel unloved, uncherished and unimportant by his inaction. You feel bad and he needs to fix it. See what he says. Or tell him that your "new" 50th birthday is next Saturday, and he needs to do something special for you. Not a big "oops, I forgot my wife's B-day party", something personal, something he thinks about and gives to you or does for you.

Second option, is to plan your own birthday bash (party, spa weekend, jewelry) whatever you want. Then go do it. Say to him, it was my birthday, you hurt my feelings by not marking the day in some special way and I am hurt and mad. I am going to go to XYZ spa for a day as a gift to myself. I'm really saddened that you were not thoughtful. I'm flummoxed.

You deserve to feel special everyday, but ESPECIALLY on a 5-0 birthday. Let him know he blew it. Communicate how it made you feel that he didn't think enough to do something, anything. See how he reacts.

Happy birthday and many, many more happy and joyful ones!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 11:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Doc, I appreciate a man's take on this. Inertia could certainly be an explanation.

In regards to the 'thick hide business', I can take comments about going up a size in jeans or new wrinkles, etc., doesn't bother me. I'm in good health, have all my parts and am thankful to be allowed the privilege of getting older. I am beginning to wonder if it bothers DH to have a wife who is 50. Do ya think?

And although the 'what did he get you' business isn't polite cocktail party conversation, it IS girl talk with close friends, and I refuse to say anything that would make DH look like a jerk, even if he has acted like one.

It's not a 'keep up with the Jones's concern- I don't give a fig about that. If he got me a knife, for heaven's sake, there would be praise for him (good call- new kitchen, I'll use it every day) as well as jokes (does he realize what he's done?) It doesn't matter what the gift is, but to the expose the snub would make him look bad, and I won't do that. Therein lies my dilemma. I've been able to avoid it so far.

brachl, adopted, and geogirl1, thanks for the input. I did consider renting out a restaurant for happy hour, or taping my ankles and going power shopping but that's exactly what DH would rather me do to take him off the hook. Then he wouldn't have to do anything.

Putting my thoughts down in my OP helped greatly, I'm now rehearsing what I will say to him.

And thanks to all for the birthday wishes!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 12:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

DH and I are an example of what happens when this gets out of control. I grew up in a house where birthdays were always celebrated. I am 39 and my father still takes me out to dinner or has us over for dinner, often with other family members invited. He buys me a cake even.

I don't know what it was like in DH's house growing up, but he does not celebrate anything in terms of effort on his part (he'll show up if someone else plans something). The first year we were together he took me shopping to get me a Christmas gift, but there has been almost nothing since. At the beginning I would do what I think is expected (gift, card, cake, dinner, sometimes a weekend away). H enever caught on. It became me loading him up with gifts and weekends away, and me being ignored by him event after event.

Ten years, and I rarely receive even a card for Christmas, my birthday, Valentine's day, our anniversary or other major events (such as me getting my masters). I really, really bothers me. And I have told him this. We've had big discussions about it many times. He just doesn't care. He says it's not personal, he treats everyone this way (his mother included). I don't care that he treats others this way (well, I sort of do), I DO care that he treats me this way. [exception: he buys gifts for his niece and nephew and sends them down to them. But it is sporatic].

I do all the shopping (and paying) for gifts we give others, including his family. I've been meaning to talk to his sister about this.

I'd had enough of this, so I started ignoring him. I stopped buying him birthday gifts or cards (but I'd still take him to dinner). I kept buying cards for other occasions (Christmas, Valentines, Anniversary), but if he didn't give me one I didn't give him his. I have a small pile of these undelivered cards.

Maybe it is starting to work. On Christmas he gave me an (unwrapped) glitter tree I commented on. For my birthday he gave me two pieces of the china I collect (again, not wrapped) and a card. On Valentines he gave me a piece of my china again.

I know how you feel, believe me. I am surprised by your DH's inaction, considering it sounds like he's been (somewhat) good about this in the past. Since it's been a few weeks it doesn't sound like a surprise party is in the works. Honestly, if you can afford it, I would book a trip for yourself and then tell him he is paying for it (I can't pull this because I am the primary earner, so I'd just end up paying for it myself, which is no gift).

I think there is no excuse for this type of thing. Even if people are having money issues they can by a $2 card and make a Duncan Hines cake. Effort matters. And I do agree your child is learning a bad lesson.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 12:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday, lady-- I'll commiserate with ya! This past october I turned 49, and it was the first time I can remember since we were kids that I even heard happy birthday from most of my family. Over the last few years, it's been "requested" that being as important as the milestones were, that I come down to Connecticut for 30th, 40th, an 45th birthday parties of my younger siblings. But when mine came along, not even so much as an email, with the exception of one sister. On some levels it was kind of depressing, but for the most part, I've rationalized it by realising that at this point in my life, it's just another day. Maybe one of these days, I'll believe it. I also can't remember the last time I got a cake or present from anyone-- wife, kids, family or anyone else. It's all good, though. :-)

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 12:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm so sorry, and Happy Birthday. I was going to say that maybe had a some kind of celebration planned, but since it's been a few weeks, I guess not.

It sounds like he's had plenty of examples, so ignorance is no excuse. Merely saying Happy Birthday does not cut it.

I think you need to flat out ask what happened this year, why didn't he do anything for your birthday. Don't stew about it, get it out of your head. Wait until he stumbles through some excuses and then tell him how disappointed and hurt you are, and remind him of how much he enjoyed his big celebration.

At the very least, he could have asked some of your friends to "help" him plan a nice dinner party, or suggest a restaurant for dinner for the two of you.

Good luck with this.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 12:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am so sorry for you.(Love the penguin!) Happy birthday many times over.

I am used to that treatment and have come to terms with it. I buy what I want for myself on my birthday and if DH thinks I spend too much money he can take over. It works for us.

I'll bet if you go out and buy yourself a new car because he forgot he will remember next year!
A trip to the spa would be nice but not enough to make a statement!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 1:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday pecanpie !

This is my opinion for what it is worth and after 36 years with the same guy. I learned pretty late in our marriage that the hot temper and screaming fits set a terrible example for our kids and also got me nowhere with my DH. Notice I said "pretty late " . I have been lucky that we are still together. I learned that the reason most marriages fail is due to the couple not talking. Things go unsaid and the resentments and hurt build up and it gets easier to just not try. I am so glad that we have stayed together and gotten past all that. We talk and try not to go to bed angry or leave words upspoken anymore. We still slip up like all couples .

If you don't want to say what is on your mind then do as Ann Landers would have advised and print out what you wrote here and hand it to him. Preface it with telling him how much you love him and that you are hurt and here is why ...then hand him the letter and go outside or in the other room and wait .

I wouldn't book a party or "do " for myself unless I wanted this non-relationship with my DH to continue and the festering of this sore spot to grow.

It is a testament to your strength that you posted here and are trying. Good luck to you. Caroline

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 1:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It sounds like *he* needs a "virtual slap upside his ungrateful head". I really don't know what to say because DH has never put me in that position. I do know that if he did put me there I would be extremely hurt, puzzled, annoyed, angry, disappointed, unloved, and unsure. He blew it and no amount of "I'm sorry, blah, blah, blah" will make it okay. But. It's done, over, water under the bridge. Not that you should ignore it and ask nothing in return. And I wouldn't resort to tit for tat because that just exascerbates a negative vibe and creates a passive-aggressive situation. Get it out. Tell him how you feel. Let him know that he *can* make it up to you and then give him the chance to do just that. I think he will. And when he does, keep in mind that it was probably difficult for him to be called to task and he probably feels more than terrible. And when he does, move on. If this is his only major transgression, keep the lovin' goin'.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 1:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This is sadly all too common. I'm sorry pecanpie! Happy 50th to you!

We have a group of friends who celebrate birthdays together. This is so nice because all the gals will make sure to ask way in advance what a birthday girl or guy wants to do, where to go, for their turn at birthday celebrating.

But before we started doing this, I had to arrange my own birthday dinners and pick out my own gifts. DH did take a few shots at the gift-picking but wasn't successful. So now when a birthday or Valentine rolls around, DH will ask me what I want, or We'll go to Costco and he'll mosey over to the jewelry and ask me what I want. He tries.

When I was younger I'd get sooo mad. But after 2 marriages and hearing from girfriends, I just laugh about it and do it myself.

But how their husband's treat birthday's is hands-down the number one complaint my girlfriend's have about their spouses.

It's so Venus-and-Mars.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 1:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

You all have been tremendous support, I can't thank you enough for your empathy and advice.

I read justadncr's post and burst out laughing. She hit closer to home than she knew!

Several years ago on the Sunday afternoon of a 3 day weekend I was headed home from a mom's and daughter's trip when the leveling/suspension on my car gave out. I was in a large city, 4 hours from home, and could manage about 5 MPH without my eyeballs bouncing so hard I couldn't see. My tiny DD2 remarked, "Mom, you shoulda worn your sports bra!"

As fate would have it I had just passed a car dealership, so I limped along on the shoulder and turned around. Long story short, every dealership, garage, you name it- closed until Tuesday morning.

I called DH to tell him what was going on. By now it was dusk. His calm and clueless advice to me was, "Well, if you can't go over 5 miles an hour, YOU'LL NEED TO TAKE THE BACK ROADS INSTEAD OF THE INTERSTATE"

Time for a word problem-- if a woman and a small child drive 210 miles at 5MPH, how long will it take them to get home? OMG I was mad.

I hung up, had AAA tow us to a dealership and left the car with a note detailing the problems. Cab to the airport.

While waiting for our flight, I called DH and happily warned him not to use the VISA nor write a check, as I'd traded in my car and bought another. I told him I'd written an e-check (we had private school tuition for 3 kids in that account) and put the rest on the credit card.

He didn't know the whole story until several hours later.

Honestly, if I had bought a car he wouldn't have said a word about it, but I swore to myself that 'next' time I'd do it, by golly.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 2:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Pecanpie, first a happy birthday wish!!

Agree DH totally blew it and you have every right to feel upset, both hurt and angry. Your feelings are absolutely valid. I'm impressed with your wisdom and emotional control in waiting to respond.

What you do may depend on what you want. If you want to discharge your anger and make him feel bad/punished, you probably know best how to do that. Going off on him over his idiotic and hurtful behavior is not an unreasonable response.

If you want him to understand that he hurt you, then talking with him calmly is the thing to do. And if you want an apology, that might mean some clear prompting, e.g. "I really want to you to tell me that..." Side note: It took me YEARS to train DH to say he was sorry when he screwed up. For some reason that just wasn't wired in right. Whew, tough process. Happy to say he 'got it' eventually.

If you are perplexed and just don't understand why he did nothing, it would be a different conversation. More of a "Hey, can we talk about my birthday? Was there a reason that..." Or "Did I somehow give you the impression that I didn't want.."

TIP: It can help to predict the behavior you don't want to trigger. Like him getting defensive, frustrated, whatever. Like so: "This might make you feel yada (or say yada) and that's not what I want to have happen at all. But can we talk about my birthday..."
People hate to be predicted, so a preface like that almost always helps contain that unwanted response.

Yet another goal (other than hurting him, his seeing he hurt you or his explaining himself) could be that you just want to celebrate your birthday with your partner. That conversation goes more like "You know we really didn't do anything for my birthday and I regret that. I'm thinking I want to..."

Four different goals. Four different conversations. Any and all make sense to me. You could even have all four. Just be clear with yourself which one you are having going in, so that you get what you need out of this. He owes you that.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 2:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Belated Birthday Peacan!!

I am very lucky in that DH does NOT forget my birthday or Christmas or any special days, though we have decided to go out of town for our Anniversary rather than do the presents. I do get to shop and buy what I want that day though, so I'd rather not have a pressie :-)

I would be terribly hurt if mine forgot my day without so much as a card. Some little gesture, especially on your big 50!!

Some guys need to be trained in these things. I am doing just that with my son so one day his 'wife' or significant other will be a happy camper. Mine came from a family that did not make a fuss, but I soon taught him, LOL

Talk to him about this latest episode and try to reach a compromise. Good luck!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 3:02PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy 50th Pecanpie! It's not childish or selfish to want to have a little something special on any birthday, not to mention a big one like the 50th. And it certainly makes sense that you would be confused, hurt and angry by your husband's behavior. If it were me, I think I'd really want to know what was going on in hubby's mind. It would drive me crazy trying to figure out what happened, where the disconnect was, especially since this doesn't seem like his usually modus operandi. And I'd probably be really angry and it might be hard to keep from being hurtful in return.

I think you've gotten some great advice here. Trailrunner's comments are particularly on the money. The only thing I can add - and I know it doesn't help you much now - is that when future similar events are coming up (birthdays, anniversaries etc) - I'd want to take into account that hubby might need help with this stuff and start talking pretty early about what I'd like - whether it's a small family celebration with a cake from a bakery, dinner with friends or plans for a weekend away, whatever. In the end, it's not the gifts or cards that matter, it's that you and your husband and family can be together and feel loved and that both the gift giver and the receiver feel appreciated. Since we are raised to be caretakers, it seems women have an easier time making that happen, while men sometimes need a little extra help.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 7:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am glad I made you laugh! Of course I wasn't serious about going out to buy a car.
Lots of good advice but talking about things is always best.
Lots of "I" statements and not "you" statements. ie "I feel such and such" and not "you always do this or that"

"I" statements are always honest and just what you are feeling. "You" statements are almost always blaming.
Good luck and let us know what turns up.

Keeping it inside just breeds resentment. Resentment is like taking poison and hoping the other person dies!

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 8:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday Pecanpie!

The answer is really simple. Your husband clearly can not believe that his lovely wife has reached 50! What a lucky man to have such a young looking wife!

OK...he's also lucky that you didn't slap him but, then, again, he was a little clueless with the car situation driving 5 mps for more than 200 miles.

My advice (for what it's worth) is to discuss it with him and tell him exactly what you told us.

Then, if he doesn't regroup, start planning a trip: Either take yourself to Italy or France OR send him on another safari....

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 10:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday Pecanpie!

I am sorry your DH left you hanging there, and with a big birthday to celebrate to boot.

I hope all of us here sending birthday wishes your way helps to take out some of the sting.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2007 at 10:42PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey Pecan, I can't believe your husband would totally ignore your 50th!!!! I agree with the other posters who have advised that you should calmly and rationally discuss this with him. My DH always tells me that he's not a mind reader, so it is possible he didn't know you were expecting SOMETHING, even if it was just a card and dinner (and a nice gift too!) Maybe he figured you for some reason (?) didn't want to mark the occasion, though he certainly should have confirmed that with you, yes?

Good luck and happy belated birthday. May all good things come you way.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 7:26AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday Pecan! It is a milestone that you should endeavor to mark in your own way so that this insensitivity on the part of your husband is not how it is forever defined.

As for your husband, I think it could be a typical case of male head-in-the-sand syndrome. If I don't do anything about it, it didn't really happen. I think lots of men don't like to think of their wives or mothers as mere mortals - - we should be invincible and omnipresent (to the point of often being taken for granted). My experience is that men often simply ignore things they find uncomfortable.

Alternatively, is it possible that you let slip a comment during one of the celebrations for your friends that you would not like such a big deal to be made of your 50th? I've seen DHs foolishly rely on such protests before.

In any case, I would chalk it up to male eggheadedness rather than an intentional slight (which it does not appear to be). Tell him he was an egghead and that you have booked the two of you for a weekend getaway to such and such place and that he now has a chance to redeem himself by planning something nice for you on your weekend away. :-)

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 7:55AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Belated Birthday!!! I like Paige's idea. As to the question 'what did he get you' --- How about a - "you'll have to ask him"
If you do plan the weekend away and he does something special he will an answer. Again Belated Birthday Wishes.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 9:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy belated birthday Pecan! I'm with Paige on the 'ostrich syndrome'... He didn't know what to do, so he didn't do anything. Dope!

If it were mine (and it was once) I'd give him a 30-second "My 50th birthday was last week and I was deeply hurt that you did nothing to commemorate it" speech, followed by a 60-second "I know you would never hurt me that way intentionally, so I've scheduled my 'make-up birthday' for next Saturday. And just in case you were interested, I saw a ___ at ___ that would make a great gift." Then give him a quick kiss and leave the room -- better yet, leave the house and don't mention it to him again.

Men can be such dopes!

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 10:34AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday, Pecanpie!

Here's another dope's perspective. ;)

I can see myself doing the same thing someday. My problem is that, while I like a little attention and acknowledgment on my birthday, I really dislike parties and am embarassed by extravagance. As a result, I am terrible at understanding what to do for people who might actually like to be fussed over and made a big deal of. The more momentous the occasion, the less luck I have coming up with ideas; the closer the day gets, the more intimidated I get. A halfhearted "happy birthday" coming from me, in such a situation, might be Jon-code for "I'm sorry I blew it, don't hate me."

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 12:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Happy Birthday, Pecan!! Welcome to the 50s, hehehe.

I think you've been given lots of good advice. I like celticmoon's comments about different ways to approach the discussion and possible repercussions from each.

My tendency is to think that your sweet dh somehow lost the moment and it was a gaffe that can be corrected. We women are generally pretty forgiving when our dh's try to make good, luckily for them :) I would figure out what you'd like for the making it good part and offer it up as a suggestion. As a guess I'd say he isn't into party planning so maybe a nice weekend trip. That also gives the impression that he didn't forget, he just had it set up for a certain time.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 2:34PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This is interesting. And in every relationship, the 'right' answer as to what to do about it might be a little different. Sometimes, it's just best to let these things go, as Bill V. has done for years. You realize that the people you live with are just not going to make a big deal out of what is a big deal for you, and you love them for the things that are good. My married daughter hasn't given us an anniversary gift or card in maybe 7 years. She lives nearby, we're on good terms, she knows we do something for that date every year, and when she was a kid, it was a big deal that became a family affair, with presents for the kids too. She gets a gift from us and from other in-laws on hers.

Now, did I mention that the ONLY thing we give presents or party for is our anniversary? We don't "do" birthdays, so that's not an issue. But it confounds me that she ignores this. So.............this year, my youngest (20) is throwing us a 25th at some friend's house. The friends are helping her out and it will be a dinner with wine, etc., for about 50 people, as I understand it. (I am supposed to be pretty much in the dark on this) Well, the married daughter has evidently decided she's doing it up big this time and has completely overturned all the plans the others have made, wants it done this way-not that way and is stressing out all the others. Why? And who knew she would suddenly get a bee in HER bonnet to actually do something for Mom's anniversary? I don't get this one. Good thing I'm in the dark, hmmm?

I don't really think you're going to get over this one by yourself. And you said you have a child at home. If you're 50, I would assume the child is old enough to work or have an allowance, maybe drive a car? Did the child get you anything or give you a card, ask what you want, etc.? Just curious here.
If it were me, I would approach it one of two ways. Either pick a nice meal at a restaurant where you're both relaxed and happy, and ask him if you had given him any reason to think that you DIDN'T want a gift/card/flowers/party/something for your 50th? Then, be quiet and let him talk.
Or, I might just plan something special for a Saturday night. Either a little get together with friends, or a dinner out or weekend trip, something, and tell him that you have made plans for your 50th and tell him what they are. He of course, will say, "But you had your B'day already!" Then, you tell him, "Well, I was waiting to see what YOU were planning and there doesn't seem to be anything..." Again, be quiet then, and let him talk. Wait him out. It seems to me that for you to be settled about this (and it isn't so much about birthday or anniversary or even Secretary's Day, but about the person who loves you ignoring you, right?) you need to let him explain. And try not to get mad, even if the explanation is dumb. Keep quiet and listen.


    Bookmark   March 30, 2007 at 3:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

As I see it, there are two things to balance here, pecan, -

1)You don't want to suppress an issue that is important both to you personally, and in the example you are leaving your kids to commemorate life events.
2)But you want (I would assume) for DH's response to be one that could be utterly joyous, fun, and restorative for both of you, albeit belated. In other words, helping him save face and have an initiative (or at least a guilt-free option) in "making good".

Now, I will say no more. You will have to fill in the blanks according to how you two operate.

Good Luck!


    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 7:58AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Your killing me with curiosity. Have you spoken to DH? Please tell us what happened.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2007 at 4:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I liked Celticmoon's reply. It's way too late for an unprompted appropriate response, - make a suggestion to go out belatedly and just find the best inside you and remember that and love that and be that. Happy Birthday.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 2:43AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Well, I am back.

DD2 had a softball tournament some ways away this weekend. She went with the team and DH and I set out in threatening weather, both grumpy because we had visions of arriving to discover the tournament had been cancelled.

I'd been mulling over all your suggestions, and celticmoon's caution in particular- to pick ONE response I wanted to elicit. I decided to broach the subject when we were about an hour from our destination to limit the time we could 'discuss' it in case it went very badly.

Of course I went to sleep immediately in the car, and woke up to people screaming and beating on all the car windows. I thought I would have a heart attack. DH was laughing. He had driven one town over to a Bed and Breakfast where he'd arranged for some of my college buddies to meet and surprise me. There were people from 4 states. He'd planned this over a month ago.

We had a great time- finished the wine and drove to the convenience store for beer, were appalled and insulted that we weren't carded-- ate great Tex-Mex, rented movies and talked all the way through them, ran to a grocery store at 1am for chocolate chip cookie dough and ate it raw and slept in and did it all over again.

Needless to say, I am a) glad I can hold my tongue and b)humbled and embarrassed that I thought DH was a jerk. Let me add that I'm also amazed at his ability to keep a secret- from me, at least. Apparently everybody else in town knew!

There's my update.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 1:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 4:09PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What a wonderful ending!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 6:05PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


He is a sweetheart after all!

I'm glad you had a wonderful celebration!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 6:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I had a feeling when I first read your post, that it would end that way, good one. Now stop complaining, lol....

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 7:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

How wonderful!! That's the best possible outcome we could have heard ;o) I'm so glad you enjoyed your birthday surprise, and so glad you have the grace and good character to have handled it the way you did from the beginning...and I quote...

"It doesn't matter what the gift is, but to the expose the snub would make him look bad, and I won't do that."

You are truly a terrific spouse.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 8:21PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

What a great ending! I am happy for you both, and again commend you for how you handled it all so maturely.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 8:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am so glad that this was the outcome. What a great time for you. Have a wonderful year ! Caroline

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 10:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I am so happy for you! Too bad about the new car though!! LOL

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 11:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Belated birthday wishes and so happy for you to have had a good outcome for your 50th!!!!

    Bookmark   April 1, 2007 at 11:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

WOW, I've not been over here that much but I just came by and this sounds like a sitcom! How great is that. BUT he had his nerve making it two weeks later. Of *course* you'd think what you thought...a little trickster he is.

Have to say I found the phrases "photo safari" and "I have a thick hide" somewhat disconcerting so close together--made me slow down and really read your first post LOL

But all's well that ends well, and a 50th with friends and cookie dough has got to be not only a good ending but a great beginning :)

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 1:20AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm so happy for you, pecanpie, and many happy returns! It was such fun to read the outcome of your disappointment and I think you showed great restraint in saying nothing to your dh for two weeks. I would not have been able to do that! Thanks for sharing with us.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 5:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

It's a good thing you didn't say anything. If it were me I would have probably complained and later felt like a a**. You have to show him this post so you can both have a good laugh.
Happy Birthday,

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 6:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I had a feeling as well, but didn't want to say anything in case I was wrong. Spouses just don't suddenly "forget" birthdays that they've always remembered, esp. the big 5-0. Of course he had to pretend like he forgot so that you'd be even more surprised. It was a dead giveaway.

Happy birthday!!!!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 8:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


What a wonderful outcome!!! I'm glad it worked out - all's well that ends well. That's a really nice husband you got there, make sure you tell him, ya hear???

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 9:56PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I did tell him! Repeatedly!

I've been rehashing the weekend with family and some friends who couldn't make it- always within his earshot so he gets those positive strokes!

About my, ahem, restraint- it's only taken me 25 years to realize that I don't have to have the last word, nor pop off quickly with the first. Has anyone else's marital 'sparring' evolved over time?

    Bookmark   April 2, 2007 at 10:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"Has anyone else's marital 'sparring' evolved over time? "

It's become very clear to both of us that it doesn't really matter who's 'right' or 'wrong' -- because usually there IS no right or wrong -- only each other's feelings. So we both put those first and apologize early. (I'm very lucky to have a DH who isn't afraid to apologize.) The most important thing to both of us is our relationship, so we're willing to take emotional risks to keep it strong and healthy.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2007 at 10:13AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Awesome, Pecan! I just *knew* that he must have something planned, but I became doubtful when I saw the amount of time elapsed. Happy happy happy belated birthday!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2007 at 6:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey, Pecan, cool!! I had absolutely no feeling that your dh would have something planned. In fact, I thought it sounded just like a guy to do something stupid like forget. Just goes to show how jaded you can get after you hit the big 5-0...

I laughed really hard at this line drove to the convenience store for beer, were appalled and insulted that we weren't carded. Just when did that end, sigh? At least I still get mistaken for a kid on the phone, LOL.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 1:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

"Has anyone else's marital 'sparring' evolved over time? "

Heavens yes! If it doesn't, you've got problems. DH and I try not to get into a "pissing match", and we both know how important it is to apologize. Sweeby said it best.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 8:37AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

seeking, I often answer the phone to "Is your mother home?"
and my tired response is, "I AM the mother."

So much for cultivating a husky Lauren Bacall voice.

fly- hilarious post- yes, I was mixing descriptions right and left there. Gives the mental picture of DH and his telephoto lens hunting the elusive rhino-wife. LOL!

    Bookmark   April 4, 2007 at 8:50AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Mr. Pecanpie has a great sense of humor. And obviously so much love for you. What a good choice you made in a husband, Pecan. Happy Birthday, friend! May God bless you with another 50 wonderful years.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2007 at 2:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you cup, and to all for the good wishes and kind words!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 11:33AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hey girl,

I just found this thread. First, Happy Natal! It's a good place. And second, hahahahaha! What a great story. Boy, he played you.

As I was reading down the thread I just kept thinking to myself 'this doesn't sound right somehow,' meaning the "forgetting".

It certainly will always be one to remember.

Come visit!

    Bookmark   April 9, 2007 at 3:05PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Any reason a DW couldn't go next to a fridge?
We need to pull the trigger on our cabinets next week,...
Cabinet installation cost (not including cabinets themselves)
We are remodeling our kitchen (complete gut and changing...
Need floorplan advice/help
Hello everyone! Looking for floorplan advice on our...
Need help on storing root vegetables
Can anyone help me with ideas to store my root veges...
Cabs above the fridge and wall oven
We don't have a KD yet, and I'm still just figuring...
Jennifer Weinman
Sponsored Products
Ardmore Nook Set - LHD419
$391.09 | Hayneedle
Vigo Shower Enclosures 40 in. x 73 in. Frameless Neo-Angle Shower Enclosure in
Home Depot
George Kovacs ADA 20 1/2" Wide Chrome LED Bath Light
Euro Style Lighting
Elk Lighting Celina 3-Light Chandelier in Polished Chrome & Coco Glass
Beyond Stores
ET2 Minx Larmes RapidJack Clear Glass 3-Light Pendant
Euro Style Lighting
Celina LED Chandelier In Polished Chrome And Canary Glass
$414.00 | Bellacor
Quoizel Regina 12" Wide Imperial Bronze Chandelier
Lamps Plus
Casablanca Ceiling Fan Controls Universal 4-Speed Fan Control System with
$80.00 | Home Depot
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™