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I wanted to XBox her in the face.

My husband and I were newly engaged and it was the week before his birthday.  Wanting to completely surprise him and knock his socks off, I decided to get him the new electronic game system he’d been coveting since it’s release, an XBox*.  I went to Best Buy on my lunch break from work and they said they apologized, but were out of the system.  More would be arriving on Sunday.  My husbands’ birthday was on Tuesday, so I decided I’d stop by on Monday, pick up the game, wrap it at work, and have it under our bed on Tuesday morning.  I envisioned waking up and telling him to look under the bed for a surprise.  He was going to be SO excited that it made me SO excited.

So Saturday arrives, and my ILs come to visit their son.  While alone in the car with them for a moment I excitedly say, “I figured out what I’m going to get J* for his birthday!  An XBox*!!”  My MIL exclaimed, “Ooooh, that’s a great gift.  We should go halves on that.” 


I was a little dumbfounded, but figured – whatever, she’ll leave town and I’ll get the gift and if she later wants to send me half the cost or something I’ll still get to surprise J*, and that’s what matters.  Don’t make too big a deal out of it.  Even though my hands started to sweat.

Later that day, at lunch, she says in front of my husband that “we should run over to Best Buy to pick up your preeeeesent…”  At this point, I’m fuming because that was enough of a hint to have my man suspicious, but also because I knew they were out of the game system until the next day, but how do I tell her that with my husband sitting right there?  Confused, my husband looks to me…I think I asked him to pass the salt or something…my hands wringing in my lap.

Somehow it gets dropped.  As we head out to the car though, having decided that it was time for them to head home, and us to go get ready for dinner reservations we had later that night, she tells us, “hold on a sec,” gets into her purse, and starts writing a check.  Oh, okay…so maybe she’s going to give me a check to help cover the cost?  I’m still peeved that the Best Buy hint has been given, and that half my credit is gone, but again – I’m thrilled if I get to surprise him on his actual birthday three days away still.

Hand outstretched, she hands the check to J* and says, “Here!  We’re buying you an Xbox!”

His face lit up.  He hugged his mom, “Thank you SO much, mom!”  Graciously (**eye roll**), she says, “It’s from us, all of us.”  He looks at me, “Really?  Aww, thank you sweetie.”  I pathetically wimper…”They’re…umm…out of stock…umm…until Sunday…so, um, we can go tomorrow if you want…” 😦

Everyone hugs goodbye.  We get into our car, J* hands me the check – it’s in the amount of the total cost of the Xbox*…my husband is beaming…I burst into tears.

It took several shots of Vodka, a lot of crying and explaining and wailing, and what-the-hell-is-wrong-with-that-woman-ing to get me to calm down enough to enjoy our dinner out.

I ended up having nothing to give him for his bday.  It’s been 2 years.  I’m still bitter.

He still doesn’t have an Xbox*.

* Some names have been changed to protect the innocent gaming device.


4 responses »

  1. You should get it for him now whether it’s close to his birthday or not. I bet it would have a totally different meaning now with the story behind it!

  2. The Sane In-Law

    Every time I read this story, I have flashbacks to a couple of stunts my own MIL pulled. “Telephone, telegram, tell-a-MIL”


  3. My ex-MIL did that to me too.

  4. Wow, this sounds just like something that my inlaws & SIL would do. I don’t tell them anything. Got suckered by my SIL again this Christmas (I forgot for a moment how manipulative she is), and it ruined X-mas. Really feel for you, don’t ever trust this bi##ch.


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