Need help telling rels no OTT gifts!

(4 Posts)
overthehillandroundthemountain Sun 13-Nov-16 07:19:10

My DB and DSIL go crazy with gift buying every year. It's very passive-aggressive: starts with constant reminders to give them lists of what we all 'want' (rather than 'might like') and sometimes recycling my gifts back after many years. They always asked for expensive items each so I stopped asking them and just started buying whatever I liked, or got them one big thing as a joint present.

However, they still persisted with the big boxes of gifts, insisting that this was the time for "spoiling" us all. As a consequence it looks like they give more than we do. I've already had to endure birthday gift openings where our presents (although thoughtful and enjoyed by their DCs) don't look big or showy enough compared with those of their other relatives - this may well be a deliberate show, as I get the feeling from the many comments of loving birthdays as a time for spoiling each other, that they don't seem our gifts as 'good enough'.

I can't work out how to ask them to stop. DSIL comes from a culture where the emphasis is on giving to show love: overloading food on plates, big sizes of things to denote love, many sparkles and much glitz. I like, and try to teach my DCs, a quiet, simple life and am naturally quite solitary.

Ahh not sure what I'm trying to say! I suppose: how do I ask them nicely & sensitively to stop with the vulgar?

PlumsGalore Sun 13-Nov-16 07:39:27

Poor you, this is horrid. We got like this a few years ago, DH has a large family and many siblings, one SIL and myself had had enough and both announced we were stopping all presents for siblings, neices and nephews as it was too much.

Much protesting, but in the end no one bought us gifts when they knew it wouldn't be reciprocated. Job done.

We only buy for our DPs and own children now. Christmas shopping us a breeze.

overthehillandroundthemountain Sun 13-Nov-16 07:54:07

Thanks Plum! Yes, it is getting out of hand. Maybe I need to do what you did and stick to my guns, at risk of looking mean. I feel like the gifts are not given in the spirit of Christmas...

Need to work out how to word it. Yet another text asking for a list from the DCs. It's so unimaginative....

overthehillandroundthemountain Sun 13-Nov-16 12:59:01

Just wondering if I might have some more advice? I'm trying to draft an email but it's coming out all wrong. I don't want to sound ungrateful...

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