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DS is asking everyone not to buy him christmas gifts and to give money to charity.

(71 Posts)
Illgetmycoat Sun 11-Nov-12 23:09:16

What would you do? He is 11 and has declared for the past 12 months that he is vegetarian and (just recently) buddhist. I am a meat eating atheist and a deep believer in the magic of Christmas. He is bonkers, but I love him.

I think he means it. He is suggesting WWF and Water Aid.

Or would you say he is too young and ignore what he says, because he will be gutted on Christmas day? Or do we go for it?

BeaWheesht Sun 11-Nov-12 23:10:41

I'd go for it and get him a nice stocking.

YouOldSlag Sun 11-Nov-12 23:11:12

Give him some money. he can decided whether he wants to buy an Oxfam goat or buy something for himself. Either way, you're giving him choice.

On Christmas morning just buy him a few token gifts to open.

What a nice young man!

VBisme Sun 11-Nov-12 23:11:31

Nope, let him go ahead, if he doesn't really mean it he'll never do it again.

Illgetmycoat Sun 11-Nov-12 23:13:15

LOL VBisme!

Frontpaw Sun 11-Nov-12 23:14:13

A future leader in the making! I'd give him money to donate of he wishes and some nice prezzies - maybe something ethical? Can't think of anything atm...

Cortana Sun 11-Nov-12 23:16:24

What a wonderful young man.

I'd do as he asks and have a few token gifts for him. I loved this book. Changed my outlook on life.

scarlettsmummy2 Sun 11-Nov-12 23:16:36

Give him the money and let him choose. Mildly amused at an atheist loving the magic of christmas. grin

izzywizzyisbizzy Sun 11-Nov-12 23:17:18

He wont be gutted on Christmas day, he will be feeling all righteous, you will be gutted all year when you are shelling out for the things he would normally have had for Christmas.

ChristmasCountdown Sun 11-Nov-12 23:17:39

I know a very socially conscious 12 year old that I can imagine doing something like this. Ditto the go for it but get him a really good stocking. And maybe a copy of the Sam Stern Vegetarian cook book. Or spend less than you normally would and get him a combination of gifts/charitable stuff. Thinking of the 12 year old I know, he'd be very put out if people didn't take his views seriously.

It sounds like he means it, and good for him! I'd still get him a few small presents though, and make sure there's plenty of nice non-present things on the day (which I'm sure you do anyway).

If he'd like, you can quickly set up a fundraiser on this site so everyone can see the money totting up smile

Illgetmycoat Sun 11-Nov-12 23:18:07

I was thinking it would be good if there was a charity that could let him see the direct result of what he had done, like a tree being planted, or a foot of land protected, or equipment his money had bought. Is there anything like that for children who donate?

SirBoobAlot Sun 11-Nov-12 23:19:37

Do it! And get him a nice stocking smile

ThisIsMummyPig Sun 11-Nov-12 23:22:17

I would definately get the ethical stuff. He is plenty old enough to know his mind, and should be respected for his views.

I would spend less though, just in case by his birthday he has changed his mind and you can get him something extra to make up?

Dominodonkey Sun 11-Nov-12 23:22:18

OP - there are lots of charities that do things like you mention. You get to name a goat too for OXFAM. Or how about an animal adoption one where he gets a little bear or tiger to show he has helped to look after one in the wild?

Your son sounds lovely btw.

Procrasstinator Sun 11-Nov-12 23:23:44

that is so lovely. you must be so proud

i would get him something from the New Internationalist Christmas catalogue; maybe a book? they have good bite size guides to world issues...and lots of other nice stuff

tell him its not a xmas present, you donated that money to Water Aid. This is just a present for being so brilliant

Procrasstinator Sun 11-Nov-12 23:25:54

haha...flippin' 'eck, watch him though...he'll have you all donating your presents next year, sat round in sack clothes, chanting over your alfalfa salad xmas dinner...

BandersnatchCummerbund Sun 11-Nov-12 23:27:29

I would do it, and donate to his chosen charities, but get him some Fair Trade/charity shop stuff too. That way the charities still benefit, and he can still have some books/toys/games/chocolate etc. to unwrap.

Secondsop Sun 11-Nov-12 23:27:42

He sounds lovely. Why not donate as he wishes, plus some little token things to open on the day (perhaps bought to raise funds for one of his chosen charities), and perhaps also see if there's something experience-based / participatory that you could get him that you could enjoy together that would further his interests, as he's obviously socially engaged and sounds like he'd value the experience more than a physical present? Then he really won't feel left out on Christmas Day as he'll also have something to look forward to. There might be something environment-based, for example?

One of his Christmas Day presents to open on the day could also perhaps be a book about one of the charities or ideas he's expressed an interest in, or a vegetarian cookbook.

Even if it is a bit of a phase, I certainly knew what was what at age 11 and I think it would be so, so valuable to him to know that you'd listened, taken him seriously, and engaged with what he'd talked about - I'm sure that would be an absolutely wonderful thing for your longer-term relationship with your son.

ChristmasCountdown Sun 11-Nov-12 23:30:08

YY for ethical stuff. WWF have membership options and adopt an animal - you could do one of those in his name. It's not one of the charities he's mentioned, but Amnesty have a wide range of stuff for sale too.

Illgetmycoat Sun 11-Nov-12 23:34:12

LOL again Procrasstinator! We have 14 coming for xmas this year (only half of whom have full bladder control). We are going to have to rustle up some kind of entertainment for the rest of them!

Illgetmycoat Sun 11-Nov-12 23:36:03

I am going to put all the charity suggestions to him. Thank you!

I'd do as he asks but maybe buy him a few gifts from charity shops that way he still gets presents whilst knowing the money has gone to charity.

Mousefunk Mon 12-Nov-12 00:01:12

Interesting that because he has different beliefs to you and cares for the welfare of animals he is 'bonkers' hmm
Give him the money and let him do what he wishes. He sounds wonderful, you should be very proud.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 12-Nov-12 00:07:06

I agree with everyone else. At 11 he does know his own mind.

And he sounds very thoughtful. You've obviously done a good job

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