Mother-in-law’s rude email goes viral

July 01, 2011
This story has touched me. It's not at all funny. It hurts like sh1t.

The acerbic message was sent by Carolyn Bourne, 60, to bride-to-be Heidi Withers and attacked her for “uncouthness” and “lack of manners”.

Withers, 29, who works as a PA in London, forwarded on the email to friends and it quickly went viral.

Son Freddie took Heidi to meet the family at their home in Dawlish, Devon. The visit, it seems, did not go well.

Bourne branded her “an ideal candidate for the ‘Ladette to Lady’ television series” and suggested she, “take some guidance from experts with utmost haste” if she wanted to be included in the family.

“There are plenty of finishing schools around,” she said.

Bourne’s email then goes on to list examples of Wither’s poor etiquette during the visit. “It is high time someone explained to you about good manners. Yours are obvious by their absence and I feel sorry for you.”

Her faux pas included:
“When you are a guest in another’s house, you do not declare what you will and will not eat - unless you are positively allergic to something. You do not remark that you do not have enough food. You do not start before everyone else. You do not take additional helpings without being invited to by your host.”

“When a guest in another’s house, you do not lie in bed until late morning in households that rise early - you fall in line with house norms.”

“You should never ever insult the family you are about to join at any time and most definitely not in public. I gather you passed this off as a joke but the reaction in the pub was one of shock, not laughter.”

“You should have hand-written a card to me. You have never written to thank me when you have stayed.”

“You regularly draw attention to yourself. Perhaps you should ask yourself why.”
Most insultingly of all, Miss Wither’s behavior left their pet dog Bomber “profoundly upset, depressed and anxious”.

Mrs. Bourne also slammed the couple’s wedding plans: “No one gets married in a castle unless they own it. It is brash, celebrity style behaviour.”

“I understand your parents are unable to contribute very much towards the cost of your wedding. (There is nothing wrong with that except that convention is such that one might presume they would have saved over the years for their daughters’ marriages.) If this is the case, it would be most ladylike and gracious to lower your sights and have a modest wedding as befits both your incomes.”

According to The Daily Mail, Carolyn Bourne is well known in Dawlish for growing prize-winning flowers and manages a large plant nursery.

She said it was “unfortunate” that son Freddie, who runs an online bicycle shop in Putney, had fallen in love with Miss Withers.

“Freddie being Freddie, I gather it is not easy to reason with him or yet encourage him to consider how he might be able to help you. It may just be possible to get through to you though. I do hope so.”

She added: “One could be accused of thinking that Heidi Withers must be patting herself on the back for having caught a most eligible young man”.
“I pity Freddie.’

One thing’s for sure: The wedding should be interesting.


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