Author Topic: Mother-in-law from hell sends harsh lesson in manners ....  (Read 736 times)

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Mother-in-law from hell sends harsh lesson in manners ....
« on: February 15, 2014, 05:07:56 pm »

Mother-in-law from hell sends harsh lesson in manners to 'uncouth' bride-to-be in email which becomes worldwide sensation

Carolyn Bourne told Heidi Withers she was 'an ideal candidate for Ladette to Lady television series'
She tells bride-to-be she needs 'guidance from experts'

By Daily Mail Reporter
CREATED: 16:31, 29 June 2011

It can be notoriously difficult to win over the in-laws.

But Heidi Withers may have a tougher task than most after her future mother-in-law emailed her a vicious character assassination in which she attacked her for her ‘staggering uncouthness and lack of grace’.

Carolyn Bourne, a renowned grower of pinks and dianthus flowers, told Miss Withers, 29, she should attend a finishing school in ‘utmost haste’ to get rid of her ‘bad manners’.

She went on to describe her as ‘an ideal candidate for the Ladette to Lady television series’.

The email was intended to be a private rant. But shocked Miss Withers, a PA for a London recruitment firm, sent it on to a select group of friends. Surprised and amused, the friends in turn forwarded the message on to their friends.

And by last night the email had been posted on numerous websites, with thousands writing comments about the ‘mother-in-law from hell’.

Mrs Bourne, the stepmother of Miss Withers’ fiancé Freddie Bourne, sent the email after the young couple had spent a weekend at her £500,000 five-bedroom detached home on the picturesque outskirts of Dawlish, Devon.

Incensed by her future daughter-in-law’s behaviour, the 60-year-old wrote: ‘It is high time someone explained to you about good manners. Yours are obvious by their absence and I feel sorry for you.’

Mrs Bourne, who is married to Freddie’s 63-year-old father Edward, even said Miss Withers’ behaviour had left their pet dog Bomber ‘profoundly upset, depressed and anxious’.

Mrs Bourne, who runs Whetman Pinks, a sprawling plant nursery based around 30 industrial greenhouses in the grounds of her home, went on to list several examples of Miss Withers’ apparent lack of manners.

She accused her of poor table manners, insulting the family in public and failing to send a hand-written card to say thank you after her stay.

And she rounded off the email with a withering attack on the nature of the couple’s relationship.

‘One could be accused of thinking that Heidi Withers must be patting herself on the back for having caught a most eligible young man,’ she concluded. ‘I pity Freddie.’

Mrs Bourne also criticised Miss Withers’ parents for failing to save enough money for their daughter’s wedding.

Miss Withers’ mother Sylvia, a nurse, and father Alan live with their two Yorkshire terriers in a five-bedroom £450,000 detached cottage set in half an acre in the village of Aylton, near Ledbury in Herefordshire.

A neighbour said: ‘They are such a lovely family and Heidi is a brilliant girl. They really are the salt of the earth.

‘I don’t know why the lad’s stepmother is getting involved.’

Last night 29-year-old Freddie, who runs online bicycle shop Capital Cycles and lives in Putney, South-West London, declined to comment.

Mrs Bourne also refused to answer any questions as she attended a Horticultural Trades Association plant show at Stoneleigh Park, Coventry.

Her husband Edward said: ‘We are aware of what is being said. I know it is very boring, very repetitive and very dull but we will not be making any comment and neither will my wife.’

Miss Withers and Mr Bourne are not the first to suffer acute embarrassment because of out-of-control email round robins.

A derogatory email exchange between Harry Fildes, 25, and Sebastian Marsh, 24, about Mr Marsh’s ex-girlfriend spread rapidly in March after Mr Fildes accidentally sent a copy to the girl in question.

Mr Marsh was later sacked by his company, Miller Insurance.

And Holly Leam-Taylor, a graduate trainee at consultants Deloitte, quit in December 2009 after sending an email discussing attractive male staff.


It is high time someone explained to you about good manners. Yours are obvious by their absence and I feel sorry for you.

Unfortunately for Freddie, he has fallen in love with you and 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.

If you want to be accepted by the wider Bourne family I suggest you take some guidance from experts with utmost haste. There are plenty of finishing schools around.

Please, for your own good, for Freddie’s sake and for your future involvement with the Bourne family, do something as soon as possible.

Here are a few examples of your lack of manners:

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.

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.
« Last Edit: February 18, 2014, 11:12:20 am by Philippa »


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Re: Mother-in-law from hell sends harsh lesson in manners ....
« Reply #1 on: February 18, 2014, 11:18:54 am »
I can see the seriousness of this but I can also see the funny side as well.

My mother in law and I had our issues but with time those went away as I knew she cared.  One of the ways we showed we cared and loved he was getting extra food in and giving it her as we knew she had to be careful with her money so that took some of the stress away.  At first my mother in law would try and stop us but eventually sh knew she was on a losing battle and accepted that she helped us in more ways than she ever realized.  It was a sad day she died and she will always have a special place in my heart.


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Re: Mother-in-law from hell sends harsh lesson in manners ....
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2014, 08:33:05 pm »
It has made me smile as my grandma didn't like my mu,m but then nobody would have been good enough for my dad as far as she was concerned.  She loved us (grandchildren).