Woman's Jealousy Over Boyfriend's Gift to Daughter Branded 'Unreasonable'

A woman has been dragged for acting like a "spoiled child" after she shared her upset that her boyfriend brought his daughter a gift that she wanted.

In a February 9 post on the London-based discussion site Mumsnet, where it has since received over 120 replies, user Lalaminetti explained her dilemma.

The couple had celebrated Valentine's Day, with her boyfriend's daughter's birthday coming up in the next few weeks.

Woman upset over bracelet gift
A file photo of a woman upset with her boyfriend on a sofa, with a picture of a bracelet, inlay. A Mumsnet user has been dragged for acting like a "spoiled child" after she shared her upset that her boyfriend brought his daughter a gift that she wanted. combo1982/vadimguzhva/Getty Images

"We've been dating for several years and since early days have had an in-joke about the way he pronounces a particular animal," wrote the poster. "Since then, we've kept the joke going and often incorporate said animal into little gifts, cards etc. His daughter asked at Christmas what the story was behind the joke, so we explained and she chuckled along."

As a Valentine's Day gift, her boyfriend had purchased her what she described as "a generic bracelet."

"Later he mentioned he'd also got a gift from the same place for his daughter's birthday and showed me what he'd chosen," she wrote. "A bracelet with a charm of the animal we joke about about together. As soon as I saw it, the phrase, 'Aw, I would've loved that!" slipped out, and now my boyfriend is upset and thinks I'm ungrateful and jealous."

Explaining that she "didn't mean it like that," the poster added: "I wouldn't say I'm jealous, but it does feel a little off, somehow, now that I've thought about it."

Kristin Walker, founder of the Mental Health News Radio Network, told Newsweek: "We often go into relationships without any understanding of how each other operates as a parent. A lack of understanding can exist regarding how someone behaves as a mate, which can be very different from their role as a parent.

"A lot of people tend to dive into a relationship without any tools regarding children and how important it is to respect that existing relationship of parent/child. It takes respect, understanding, empathy, and, most of all, time, to step into that existing parent/child relationship."

Users on Mumsnet sided with the boyfriend. One commenter wrote: "From your boyfriend's point of view, you've just told him you don't like what he gave you. This might not have been your intention but saying you would have loved the other bracelet does imply that you don't like the one he got you."

"You acted like a spoiled child," posted another commenter. "Saying something like that when you already got a gift is rude and you should be able to hold it within you."

When it comes to jealousy between a new partner and a child, things can get complicated. "Triangulation can play a hugely damaging role in pitting children and adults against each other for attention from the primary parent," said Walker.

"Children absolutely have every right to know they come first—a new partner does not. It takes a lot of patience, gratitude and understanding from the adults trying to navigate a new relationship."

Another Mumsnet user wrote that the dad might be trying to build a better relationship between his girlfriend and daughter: "Maybe he is trying to deepen the bond between you and his daughter by doing this?" read the reply. "Ie, she's now in on the joke."

"I think you're being really possessive and acting like it's a competition between you and his daughter for his affection/love," posted another user. "Your comment was what a jealous sibling would say—very childish."

Newsweek was not able to verify the details of this case.

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