to feel sorry for DS who was 21 today and got.....

(116 Posts)
ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:16:27

from us - he has a nexus 10 but its a combined xmas/birthday pressie so he has decided to have it on xmas day.

we have no family. not a one on either side. so im usually very thankful that my friends buy for him. Ive always said they dont need to, and he is now 21 so really it should stop.

really it needs to stop - my friends gave him:
friend 1. a xmas bag which contained various items of smart price/value food - including a smart price pot noodle. a fucking value pot noodle. please - if you cant afford a real pot noodle dont fucking bother....and i had told her that i buy his food.
friend 2. a matalan body warmer. too small and dog turd colour. now ive never quite seen the point of body warmers anyway - where are the sleeves???? what good is a coat with no sleeves anyway? no tags in so suspect it may not be new....and it doesnt even fit me or id have nicked it for horse riding.
friend 3. something useful. a fiver. god bless her.

so. IABU for being an ungrateful cow probably. but really - i find some of this slightly rather they didnt bother tbh than put this little thought into it.
the fiver was very gratefully received - he is a student.
the value pot noodle im angry at. irrationally so. i buy their kids nice things - wooden stamp sets, hmv vouchers, not fucking value pot poor boy. luckily he is gracious and accepting. he has AS and is lovely. unlike me. im not lovely. im pissed off.

i need more wine

LRDtheFeministDude Sun 02-Dec-12 23:20:46

I guess the one who gave food was probably thinking about 'student food' and assumed it'd be welcomed because that's what he eats normally (not that I'd be especially thrilled either).

It is a bit shit if you buy their kids nice things and they can't be bothered. I'd find it hard not to make a snide comment, I think.

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 02-Dec-12 23:22:51

Vic, I feel sad for your ds too

That all sounds a bit shit

I would have given him a big 21st card and 20 quid (and I am skint)

OpheliaPayneAgain Sun 02-Dec-12 23:23:17

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:24:30

im too sodding polite. and ive bought her kids already or id be tempted to get down to poundland....

if its the thought that counts then thats even worse - wheres the thought in a value pot noodle?

he eats well for a student because i buy his shopping which i had said repreatedly when she originally mentioned she was thinking of this for his present.....

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 02-Dec-12 23:25:07

I think a 21st birthday is special, tbh

blackeyedsusan Sun 02-Dec-12 23:25:24


smart price pot noodle, ouch! why not buy ermm I don't know, a small box of chocolate instead? at least it would be a treat instead of something to endure.

oh and wine

they have body warrmers so that you can put an extra layer on and still manage to have full use of your arms... unlike the michelin man here who struggled last friday reach things in the shop... blush until last friday I could n't underrstand why they wwere made either...

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:28:14

yep im an ungrateful cow. probably. but they earn more than i do, their parents have just given them 100k for a house deposit, completely unrelated and i dont actually expect anything - but yes i find a value pot noodle from one person and a second hand body warmer from another a wee bit insulting.

why wrap up a value pot noodle? why?? how disappointing is it to open a value pot noodle on your 21st?

he is actually being very sweet about it. its me thats pissed off

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 02-Dec-12 23:28:25

if I was doing "ironic student gift" I would do a hamper packed with pot noodles, beer, oven chips, chocolate and a weeks bus pass

or a similar variation

some thought is required, and some humour...sounds like your pot noodle friend had an idea but then failed at the effort part

blackeyedsusan Sun 02-Dec-12 23:28:28

i have a very tight budget for presents but there are a lot better things to spend money on... than something that is not needed and not very nice at all. presents should be treat, even if they are small treats that do not cost a lot.

blackeyedsusan Sun 02-Dec-12 23:29:50

did he get to come home or did your miserable h persuade him to stay...

LucieMay Sun 02-Dec-12 23:29:58

This is why I only buy for family children. Made it clear when ds was born for my friends not to buy for him and vice versa.

LRDtheFeministDude Sun 02-Dec-12 23:30:46

Yep, agree with that blackeyed.

The same money would surely have got a bottle of plonk or some cheapie chocolate and most students would surely welcome those.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:31:37

oh ophelias post got deleted.....i didnt mind being told i was an ungateful cow tbh.....i probably am.

tis tough tits. i cant be grateful for a smart price pot noodle. id have had trouble with a real pot noodle.
but a phoney pot noodle is even worse. <shrugs>

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 02-Dec-12 23:32:51

ophelia's post seemed rather out of character, tbh

OutragedAtThePriceOfFreddos Sun 02-Dec-12 23:33:34

It's nice of people to buy anything for a friends 'child' by the time they get to adulthood. You are being very silly.

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 02-Dec-12 23:34:46

isn't "21" special any more though ?

I buy a little something for the 21st (or give money) and then it stops for me

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:35:36

blackeyed he came home - very last minute decision and he got the train home yesterday and is going back at 7.15 in the morning.....but at least i got to see him and take him for a meal.

i just feel so sorry for him and he never ever complains - he is a real sweetie. he never expects anything - and nor do i tbh - i buy for their kids and they buy for mine but i swear i would be embarrassed to buy an everyday value pot sodding noodle no matter how hard up i was. which they arent

LRDtheFeministDude Sun 02-Dec-12 23:38:57

I would think it's unusual to buy stuff for a friend's adult children - but then if you habitually buy presents for each others' children it seems really shite not to bother in this situation.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:41:27

i wonder really how they would feel if i bought their children such shit.....there is no dressing this up. its shit. i would honestly rather they didnt bother because seeing his eyes light up at a gift bag and then trying to look grateful for some everyday value pasta and a pot noodle is quite difficult.

it was his 21st.

im going to tell them all to stop now, for both my children.

SucksToBeMe Sun 02-Dec-12 23:43:26

Sod them, it seems like you've done a really good job raising a decent,polite young man. I don't blame you for getting the hump, I'd be livid.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:44:10

i will buy for theirs until they reach 21. just as they have done for mine, but i am going to ask them to stop buying for my younger one too.

they buy for mine because i have always bought for theirs. i would honestly rather they didnt.

i think im going to plead poverty (which is true) next year at xmas and say im doing birthdays only.

waltermittymistletoe Sun 02-Dec-12 23:47:18

Oh bless him that is sad.

Can you surprise him with something small before the xmas present? Even a voucher for clothes or music?

AgnesBligg Sun 02-Dec-12 23:52:00

They sound a bit thick, or tight.

Who wants to unwrap a Potnoodle on their 21st. Or ever? Perhaps yes a joke that didn't work, then.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:54:00

i bought him some trainers, and got him a ton of chocolate. he truly expects nothing from anyone else.

and i dont expect anyone else to get anything for him. ive said countless times now that they dont need to buy for him, and now he has reached 21 they have all said it will stop anyway, which im really glad about. i hate feeling so, ungrateful, but this really has touched a nerve.

Blending Sun 02-Dec-12 23:55:15

WTF? A fake pot noodle and a used (possibly) body warmer?

I can't even think of a positive thing to say!

Definately more wine and a pat on the back for raising such a nice young man.

ThatVikRinA22 Sun 02-Dec-12 23:58:33


i am clearly loved by my friends. DS is a lovely sweet lad, he is currently doing a website for free for my riding instructor, he is helpful, sweet and caring.

really this has got me thinking. really thinking. what a fucking mug i am

Narked Sun 02-Dec-12 23:59:13

That was shitty.

I'd be wrapping them back up and giving them back at christmas!

OkayHazel Mon 03-Dec-12 00:01:05


She probably thought it was a quirky 'student survival' kit in very good humour. Tesco value, add-water food, £5 - student essentials!
You'll also find that at top unis across the gilet - or bodywarmer - is a student staple - often mocked for being toff-ish and Jack Wills-y.

I think it's quite a good idea actually. Maybe not for a 21st though, I see your point.
MY housemate is moving to uni Spain, and I'm going to send her off with a similar hamper of Spanish student stereotypes. Do they do Primark sombreros and Tesco value paella?

WilsonFrickett Mon 03-Dec-12 00:05:06

My DM has outrageously sensitive skin. She's famous for it as in she's been to hairdressers, beauticians, spas and left with actual burns. She cant wear any perfumed products at all and Everyone knows about it. For her 50th her 'bingo buddies' chipped in for a £5 bag of cheap shite facial products from the market. People can just be thoughtless about presents - like the effort of deciding to buy something wears them out and they can't quite get as far as buying something good or appropriate.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 00:05:52

i'd feel sorry for him too TBH. the pot noodle thing i could sort of see them thinking "oh this is what students like" but if i was think of student food, i'd buy the premium range (branded/whatever it's called) stuff on the basis that students dont get to buy it and as a birthday is for treats, it would be nice to have the good stuff.

we have a family member who buys cheap cheap shite as presents even for adults in the family and we would rather she just didn't as it really feels like she's gone "oh that'll do". what's the point in buying a present you dont want to buy and that everyone can tell you dont want to buy? (this woman is far from skint BTW)

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:09:49

this had zero thought put into it - she asked about buying him food and i said i buy it all - really a couple of quid would have been fine but this just shows really how very little they think of us/him. it looks like they cleared out their cupboard and put it in an xmas bag.

i just feel like a mug. an idiot. i feel obligated to continue to buy for their children who have a huge family to buy for them and tbh i dont even think they know what we buy anyway - they never say thank you. their kids are young and it probably gets lost in the scrum. i buy for theirs because they have always bought for ours but this shows what sort of effort goes into it.

i really dont mind anyone not buying for him or buying him something cheap - but if its the thought that counts then this says it all.

a thought would have been to buy him some chocolate (he loves chocolate) or some shower gel or something he would use.

im sad that our "friends" think this little of us really. zero thought when into this.

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Mon 03-Dec-12 00:10:47

A Value Pot Noodle.

I am utterly speechless. So what he is an adult at 21, but 21 is special.

It is an insult to buy a pot noodle to anyone for their 21st birthday. I would be furious.

I would give the present you already have bought for this friends child to charity, I am sure your local church does a collection. Instead give them some hair knick knack from claires, or something that the kids will appreciate but the parents know is deliberate.

Yanbu at all. Nothing to do with being ungrateful, what is it to be grateful for?

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Mon 03-Dec-12 00:12:07

x post. Stop buying for these kids. You are under no obligation.

Unless you buy them a pot noodle. A Special one. wink Then, at least you have the moral high ground as you bought a higher quality present.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:14:14


hey ho.
it just somehow makes it worse. buying something really truly thoughless seems worse than nothing.
i shall have a wine and dwell no more.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:17:38

ive already bought for their kids quint but i will stop making such an effort in future i think.

i always spend around £10 - £15 on each of their kids for both xmas and birthdays.

the pal who bought him the gilet that doesnt fit - ive already bought her a pandora charm - she specified a colour and to get a coloured one was £40.

im going to stop being such a fucking mug. from now.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 00:21:15

vicar really, stop buying for them. it isn't appreciated. they joy is supposed to be in giving but you resent doing it. those chidlren will not miss what you dont buy as they already get loads. if it was being reciprocated then no problem but it isnt and i know you and DH are struggling right now.

i have stopped buying for a lot of extended family children because like you say, it was lost in the scrum and was never reciprocated for my children. i dont feel bad about it at all. i buy for the important people.

bondigidum Mon 03-Dec-12 00:22:36

It does sound like a poor joke gone wrong BUT usually after the initial disappointment of the silly jokey gift a real gift is then whipped out, this is where they went wrong.

Not even a real pot noodle though.. If I were doing the joke gift at least make it a real pot noodle so its edible.. I wouldn't buy for their kids ever ever again. Even the gifts you already have got for them, take them back or give them to someone else.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 00:23:09


sell their presents on ebay. get them all a £5 asda gift voucher.

i cant beleive your 'friend' specified exactly what to get her when she got him a gilet that doesn't even fit and looks like shit.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:28:34

see i know the joy is in the giving - i dont actually resent giving - im resenting what they have given to DS.....for DS but the irony is that he doesnt see that what they got him was shit....he has Aspergers and doesnt really get the underlying message that i him its a gift and he accepted it as such.

its me. i didnt miss the enormity of the crapness of what happened here. he thankfully did - its gone over his head.

i will plough on and give what ive bought for this year. no point in changing it now.
i just need to learn from this. i can still get nice things for them, i just need to invest less effort.

zipzap Mon 03-Dec-12 00:29:21

I'd be tempted to say to the friend that gave him the body warmer on the quiet that you know that ds is lovely and wouldn't say anything but could she give you the receipt for the bodywarmer as it is too small for him and it seems such a shame after she has gone to all the effort of getting him a present to get him something that he can't use. But that it's lovely, a body warmer is a great idea and will be great to keep him cosy at uni, so you thought if she could give you the receipt you could change it for a bigger size so that he could actually use it...

If it was an honestly bought present then they shouldn't mind in the slightest as most normal decent people would be upset if they thought their present didn't fit the recipient. And for something like a bodywarmer you would have thought that you would have been better off getting bigger rather than smaller so you can put it over big jumpers when it's really cold.

If they have regifted it or worn it and decided they didn't like it or whatever, then they will have to make excuses and will know that they have been caught, even if they have to bluff and say that there were other things on the receipt so you will have to give it back to her to sort out and then either ask her to stick the money on a gift card so you can send it up to him and he can try on the clothes to make sure he gets something that fits and that he likes, or try to steer her towards say a black or navy bodywarmer that will at least be much more wearable than dog turd coloured.

And as for giving a value pot of pot noodles - that's rotten. Agree that if she wanted to give food then she should have given something nice and a treat. think it is sainsburys but maybe other supermarkets do it now where you can put money onto a student food card so that they can buy their food locally (assuming you both have a local sainsburys!) but you can top it up with money from where you are. she could have put a few pounds on a card for him so he didn't have to carry it or at least choose stuff he likes - buying food for someone as opposed to buying them a treat of chocolate etc - is such a personal thing, she has no idea whether or not he would like those things she chose (value item or not!) so again he could have ended up with a load of things that he wouldn't normally eat.

Poor ds.

Hope you both had a lovely day together and he enjoyed his birthday!

pookamoo Mon 03-Dec-12 00:31:44

I want to buy Vicar's DS some chocolate. sad

CuriousMama Mon 03-Dec-12 00:33:42

I agree sell the gifts on ebay. And re-wrap the pot noodle grin

Aww I want to send him something and I'm skint. I'd paint him a nice picture of his favourite thing. I did DS1 a painting from the Dark tower series (Stephen King) instead of a birthday card but then dp brought a card in after his night shift. It's on my profile. If he'd like a painting I'll do him one. Just PM me Vicar.

People never fail to amaze me. Luckily as I get older I find myself becoming very selective with friendships. I have plenty of acquaintances and a few really good friends. Also a few who've fallen been thrown by the wayside.

Me too * pook*

And a proper bloody pot noodle!

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:41:48

thank you really smile but he is not short of chocolate! and i dont think he even eats pot noodles! he is funny with food (aspergers!)

curious your painting is amazing!

his girlfriend makes cards (she has her own business) and made him a lovely personalised card - and he really loved it. she didnt get him anything but he really loved his card because it had a reference to a website he goes on regularly and he spotted it....she made something of significance to him.

i didnt mean to start a pity party but it just pissed me off a bit. a lot

SoleSource Mon 03-Dec-12 00:42:14

Maybe that is all they can afford?

It would piss me off if anyone gave my dcs a gift like that - you are most utterly and definitely NBU!

Is there anything else in particular that he would appreciate for his birthday? (After all, 21 is such a big birthday) Would love to send a little treat winging it's way to him.

CuriousMama Mon 03-Dec-12 00:49:32

DS2 was being checked for aspergers but they say he doesn't have it now? He can be really funny about food. And if you are wearing buttons he can't eat in front of you. My friend's ds has autism and he will only eat brown food. If I cook him chips or pizza, his main diet, he hovers around asking me umpteen times if they'll be brown enough smile He's lush.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:52:02

really that is very kind but he is fine - like i say the pot noodle thing has actually gone over his head, just not gone over mine. I got him lots of chocolate, his friend came today with a big bar of toblerone and a tin of roses...he now has enough choc to sink a small ship!

my friends are not short of money, and if they were i would hate to think that they felt they had to buy anything at all - i said years ago they should stop buying for him, i said stop at 18!

the whole thing really has gone over his head. he will have forgotten it by tomorrow, it really hasnt bothered him at all.

its me thats got pissy about it....

but really thanks
you are all lovely.

CuriousMama Mon 03-Dec-12 00:53:06

Oh and it's not a pity party we all know how it pulls at our hearts when our dcs get short changed. Hurts a lot.

Narked Mon 03-Dec-12 00:53:48

If you wanted, we could all send pot noodles to your friend grin

CuriousMama Mon 03-Dec-12 00:56:51

Narked great idea, I'm in grin

Yes I can imagine if you told ds that a stranger from a website wants to send him a painting he'd think confused but if he would like one I'd like to do it. I haven't picked up my paint brushes since doing that painting blush

He has a lovely mum and he sounds adorable.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 00:59:06


and thank you narked thanks for the pm....

nest of vipers my arse. grin

he has his nexus tablet to look forward to....he cant wait to get his mitts on that, and he has lots and lots of chocolate! he is quite happy!

pookamoo Mon 03-Dec-12 00:59:36

Well maybe not chocolate then - but he sounds like a lovely DS and I'm glad he has a nice girlfriend and other friends of his own who care.

When I went away to Uni, my aunt was at that time working as a consultant surgeon (and single, no kids, just herself to look after) and not short of a penny or two. She gave me a hamper to take to Uni. Value pasta, value toothpaste, value toilet roll, value cornflakes, and yes, a value pot noodle. Thanks, Auntie. hmm

When young friends of mine have gone off to university, I have made them a shoebox of bits and bobs with a sense of humour and some useful things in there (paracetemol, pro plus, condoms, tin opener, stamps, spare pants... you get the idea). It really sounds like your friends missed the mark.

But in the meantime, congratulations on being the mum of a real "grownup"! grin

pookamoo Mon 03-Dec-12 01:00:48

xpost with Narked. I'm in on that - think I might still have Auntie's one from 1996 at the back of the cupboard. wink

Value pot noodles Narked? I'm in!

Give him a big 21st birthday wish from the Tapir tribe north of the border then, please Vicar. thanks

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 01:03:54


im getting my perspective back. slowly im fine really and so is he. he doesnt drink, he isnt really typical of a 21 yr old, but nor is he questioning why anyone bought him a smartprice pot noodle so i reckon he is a better person than me!

cheers guys. wine

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 01:11:07

ooh, this thread has reminded me to parcel up and wrap a box i've been saving up for my Dcousin who left for uni in sept. she loves the chicken flavoured mccoys so i save them out of the multipacks and now the box is full so i have to send it. i could just imagine her face if i sent smartprice ones! grin

IfYouCanMoveItItsNotBroken Mon 03-Dec-12 01:15:03

What a shitey gift, for the sake of the few quid it cost, surely a bottle of wine or a funny mug would have been a more thoughtful option. My mum used to give me rubbish like that when I was a studentand had no money left at the end of term, apparently I would have spent the cash on vodka but if I had been presented with that as a 21st gift I would have struggled to hold my tongue. I'm not ungrateful. I love getting cheap or handmade gifts which show someone has thought of you. But that amount of "thought" in a gift is offensive to receive and embarrassing to give. If you put that amount of effort into their kids presents would they care? I suspect so. Your son sounds lovely.

MyNutcrackerSuiteAudrina Mon 03-Dec-12 01:38:18

Bloody hell, OP, that is terrible. And I thought I was hard done by with the over-sized brass key I got for my 21st which was neither use nor ornament.

Interestingly, an image search for "large brass 21st key" produces this as a result which makes me feel a bit more grateful.

Have more wine

ll31 Mon 03-Dec-12 01:48:16

i dont know,is this the son you give out abouta lot? is it down to that?

cynnerthenaughtyreindeer Mon 03-Dec-12 01:57:08

I feel terrible for your DS, Vicar. I have a dd who has a Christmas Day birthday. Relatives often present a gift and say this is for your Birthday and Christmas. She is also lovely about the situation, but I get pissed on her account.
I do not present their child with a gift in July and state " Happy birthday and Merry Christmas!".

DaveMccave Mon 03-Dec-12 01:57:13

He's 21 not 12! It's pretty odd that YOUR friends buy for him tbh.

For my 21st I got nothing, and didn't mind a bit because I was an adult and certainly didn't feel sorry for myself, a few cards was enough.

I agree the pot noodle present is a bit crap, what else was in the food bag?

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 04:04:21

cynner are you serious? do you honestly expect people to go out and buy two separate presents and wrap them both to hand over to the same child on the same day? how do you know they aren't spending twice as much on the one present to make up for what they would spend if her birthday was in july and a present at xmas? you sound greedy TBH.

and of course you dont present the child with a present in july and say merry xmas. it's not xmas in july. but it IS xmas on xmas day!

CheerfulYank Mon 03-Dec-12 04:23:24

CuriousMama that is an amazing painting of Roland!

I would do what zipzap said and ask for the receipt for the bodywarmer. Then you can get him something he'd actually use!

cynnerthenaughtyreindeer Mon 03-Dec-12 05:17:41

Oh FFS Santa..I do expect relatives to acknowledge my child's birthday and Christmas as being two separate celebrations.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 05:23:18

they do acknowledge it. they say "this is for your birthday and christmas"

it is greedy to expect 2 presents from one person on the same day. if they were a month apart you would have a point. what is the problem with spending double and getting one far better present?

MyBaby1day Mon 03-Dec-12 05:30:54

A pot noodle? shock, that is unbelievable, so sorry for your DS, some mean people around!. Still hope he had a nice 21st and he'll enjoy the future with his mates!!. x

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 05:32:29

I agree with you. Even though he is 21 he is still your "baby" and I know I would feel so sad if anyone gave things like that to my DS.

You sound wonderful as does your DS. Wish him a wonderful birthday.

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 05:38:49

Santa my DGD's birthday is on the 16 December and yes I have bought her a birthday gift "La La Loopsy" and accessoriesgrin, wrapped it in birthday paper. A birthday card and I will also have a helium filled balloon ready for her.

Christmas day she will get a christmas present wrapped in christmas paper.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 05:43:14

16th of december isn't christmas day though. even if it was, it's your choice to buy her two things. I think it's greedy to expect two things and get annoyed when this doesn't happen.

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 05:48:45

Don't you think that everyone deserves to celebate their special day?

Even my friend's DS who celebrates is birthday on boxing day (28 this year)
gets two presents from me and a birthday cake. I have known him all his life and I love doing this for him.

He gets his Christmas present on christmas day and his birthday present on boxing day.

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 05:50:26

Occasionally over the years I have given him a more expensive gift because I knew that that was what he wanted but always on his birthday something small plus a card and cake.

SantaIAmSoFuckingRock Mon 03-Dec-12 05:57:09

who is saying they cant celebrate their birthday? i'm guessing any parent of a child born on xmas day, get's them cards and a cake and sings happy birthday and get's them a birthday present. expecting other people to provide 2 presents for a child on the same day is grabby IMO. fine if they want to, but if they dont you shouldn't get annoyed with them. it's up to the giver what they buy and how much they spend on a present for someone else. i'd be really pissed off if i'd doubled up and bought one really good present for a child only to find out the parents expected another separate one.

Choosing to wait til Xmas for his present, thrilled at 'only' a card from his girlfriend and gracious in revving a pot noodle wannabe? Well done for raising a lovely young man

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 06:23:12

Point taken. I have never come across any family or friends who would get annoyed with only present. I just happen to like the excitement of shopping for birthdays and then Christmas.

Paradoxically I have never ever liked been the centre of attention on my own birthday. I can still remember how mortified and embarrassed I ws on my 10th birthday when the Teacher had the whole class singing happy birthday to me.

I think this was because my Mum (who was a divorced working Mum back in the day when it was extremely unusual) never really made a big production of birthdays.

She went all out at Christmas though.

Coralanne Mon 03-Dec-12 06:24:02

only one present

blueballoon79 Mon 03-Dec-12 06:24:14

I have a friend like that.

She is most definitely not short of money but just tight with it.

We used to buy each other birthday presents. I'd generally spend around £20 and then send it over to her address at a cost of a further £6.00

In return, for my birthday, she'd send a card filled with samples of face cream, body lotion and perfume that she'd ripped from the front of magazines and collected especially. Lucky me! hmm

For DS' birthday she sent a £1.00 gift voucher for WHSmiths one year and a bag of plastic soldiers from Woolworths another year with the price tag of 79p still on them.

Every year it would just be terrible presents with no thought and I got more and more fed up with her embarrassing tight fistedness.

However, I finally stopped buying for her when it was her daoughters 1st birthday and I saved up and bought a Hungry Caterpillar money box which cost me a fortune and posted it up to her at the cost of about £6.00 again, only to receive an e-mail saying "Thank you for the present, it was very sweet but you shouldn't have as I know you don't have any money. Very Kind".

I just decided then and there not to buy anything for her again.

Jemma1111 Mon 03-Dec-12 06:38:11

Vicar , if I were you there would be no way I would give your friends presents after this !
What thoughtless tight bastards they are !
I would also be livid and would probably have to ask wtf a pot noodle was a good idea to buy for your child , how insulting .
It just shows they can't be true friends .

Slainte Mon 03-Dec-12 07:18:16

Vicar, I agree with zipzap, ask for the receipt for the gilet so that you can change it to his size. Watch her squirm out of that one grin

Please don't be so generous with gifts for their DCs. As another poster said, a couple of small items from Claire's accessories will delight the children.

ohfunnyface Mon 03-Dec-12 07:39:11

Vicar I'll buy the pandora charm from you! Full price!

blackeyedsusan Mon 03-Dec-12 08:00:14

all they can afford? you can get a box of chocolates for a pound from asda.

glad he got home, hope he gets back alright.

YuleBritannia Mon 03-Dec-12 08:04:04

Just out of interest, OP. Why is it any of your business what person A gives to person B when you are person C? Unless you are person BC.

mum2threesons Mon 03-Dec-12 08:11:32

Morning, there's no way after what they gave your lad I would give them the gifts you have already bought.
Can you take them back or like some other people have said resell on Ebay or even give to charities or local school for a raffle prize? Then buy them something of equal 'thought'?
Happy birthday to your son.

BelaLugosisShed Mon 03-Dec-12 08:16:56

These people are your friends? I'd be embarrassed to do what they've done, it's cheap and nasty and more than a little bit spiteful.

I'm glad he came home though smile

Doingthedo Mon 03-Dec-12 08:19:03

It wasn't just a pot noodle, it was a bag of other food including a pot noodle, not quite the same as a lone pot noodle wrapped up!

melika Mon 03-Dec-12 08:21:49

In my eyes, after 18, relatives kids get nothing. They are adults. They must learn to make money.

On the other hand, if there was a party, say for their 21st, I would try to buy them a great present or money. I had an 18th party for my DS and there were some family who didn't even bring a card. What arseholes, it's not like they can't afford it!

I would be pissed too, maybe you should tell your friends it stops at 18.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 08:28:13

Who asked what else was in the bag... There is an everyday value pit noodle, everyday value pasta, everyday value savoury rice, a spaghetti sauce mix, some biscuits. and some wine gums. An eclectic mix of the very best value products going by the look of it. wink
It's fine and I can laugh about it today. He has gone back to uni but is calling with flowers for his gf who he says is feeling a bit down. See? He is actually the least materialistic person I know. I think we've reached the milestone at which present buying among my friends stops anyway - the bodywarmer pals son is same age, so it all stops this year. I'm fine now. Just had a little ranty moment last night, but only on here and in my own head. I will continue to buy for them and theirs as I've always done.
Sympathies to the parent of the kiddie with a Xmas birthday...sad birthdays should be separate!

PassTheMincePies Mon 03-Dec-12 08:32:19

FFS, just read through all this and the way everyone's making out, I completely thought it was a lone pot noodle wrapped up in paper! Which would be a bit of an insult
As part of a hamper/food parcel though? What's wrong with that? Maybe she thought she was doing him a favour as he's a student, and putting together some staple student food, kind of like the Christmas hamper things that some people do at Christmas for their relatives?
If it was part of a collection of foods, maybe she wanted to do that and just didn't realise it had to be Harrod's/Waitrose insert fancy name here finest food label only. hmm

PassTheMincePies Mon 03-Dec-12 08:33:02

Cross post, take too long to type! Still sounds like a collection of foods for a student though

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 08:49:58

Yes a collection of foods for a student, but I'd already told them I buy his food. I still think that a few value packets of rice n noddles Is a bit crap for a 21st but if iabu I will happily accept that. I'm over it today anyway. He had gone back to uni and left here anyway...he is home for Xmas in a week. <eyes pot noodle for brekkie>
Unfortunately there Is nothing in it he would eat ( cept maybe the wine gums) I'm sure we will find some use for it or give to a food bank.

TheShriekingHarpy Mon 03-Dec-12 08:51:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

melika Mon 03-Dec-12 08:54:45

Ha ha, theshriekingharpy, that would get message across! but I think the friendships wouldn't last too long after that.

HullyEastergully Mon 03-Dec-12 08:56:14

I think you are mixing up feeling sorry for him because he didn't get many presents (because he chose xmas), with being cross with the friends.

I think the foods from one friend sound just what most people would think a student would appreciate, and she probably DID put thought into it and couldn't think of anything else.

The bodywarmer is a bit more odd.

Tbh, if it were my dc, I would have got bits and peieces to make up for a likely lack.

LaCiccolina Mon 03-Dec-12 09:02:39

I don't understand at all. His 21st birthday crept up on everyone? He sounds happy with ur gifts so what's the issue? Are u cross the gift shopping bag was value food so if it had been waitrose it would be ok? I thought it a nice idea. I got a bit of that when a student and found food always welcome...? It's not nec a 21st birthday gift ie silver key to the door, but what bloody use is that? And why should someone else buy him a 'to b remembered' type present if urs is a joint Xmas one? Bit double standards there. Hope the wine helped u calm down. As u say gifts change or stop at this age. He sounds a lovely boy so well done there. He sounds happy and sorted so at 21 all u can ask for! Hope week goes better...

JugglingWithPossibilities Mon 03-Dec-12 09:03:07

A few basic items of food sounds as though she was trying to be helpful and practical for your student DS - as someone said though perhaps idea could have been better thought through - such as throwing a few beers in with it all, and putting it in a wee hamper, perhaps with a student cook book ?

TheShriekingHarpy Mon 03-Dec-12 09:03:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Latara Mon 03-Dec-12 09:11:46

If i knew a 21yr old lad i'd buy him:

a box of mini toblerone or other 'man' chocs; with alcohol but i'd find out what he prefers first (usually Stella or similar?).

or if i was spending more then eg. a Superdry beanie (£14.99, my Dad may receive one for Xmas).

Your friends need telling - buy decent stuff or don't bother.

Latara Mon 03-Dec-12 09:12:42

Or an itunes voucher, a Waterstones voucher for student books etc.

Latara Mon 03-Dec-12 09:15:56

Ps. not wanting to make you feel bad but i'm pretty skint & i gave my sister some nice pressies last week (her birthday), & buying some for Xmas too, just not spending so much on the Xmas pressies.

I'm more shocked that your "friend" specified you should buy her a £40 pandora charm! shock

Perhaps send an email around in January to these friends stating you will be knocking present buying on the head. I sounds like one friend has older kids, and one has younger kids that are drowning in toys. I'm sure it won't be missed and it will save a lot of hassle. Bet the Pandora friend will be disappointed but tough! hmm

My DS is autistic and eats a very small amount of foods. He'd be very confused by a gift bag full of foods he doesn't like!

cory Mon 03-Dec-12 09:23:17

They sound like loons (particularly the pot noodle loon), but you do sound very protective of him.

I know he has Aspergers, but he is an adult; if he isn't worried by something then I think you need to step back; you can't live your life getting upset about every snub and funny treatment he receives.

Apron strings over there <hands over scissors>

He'll be fine, really. He sounds lovely and has a lovely girlfriend. And there must somebody around his uni who will appreciate the pot noodles.

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Mon 03-Dec-12 09:33:06

I LOVE that word!


Say it real quick!

Journey Mon 03-Dec-12 09:45:52

I think I'd tell the friend who gave the value food that you'll just be sending cards from now on and in return it would be nice if she did the same.

I would not give the pandora bracket if this is the same women who gave the value food. That to me would be saying mug. Either return the braclet to the shop, keep it or give it to a charity. This will give you a bit of satisfaction in knowing that they won't be getting a lovely gift because of their behaviour.

If you give the gift then you're saying it is okay what you gave my ds for his 21st.

GoldQuintessenceAndMyhrr Mon 03-Dec-12 09:54:06

Agree with Journey.

zipzap Mon 03-Dec-12 10:39:04

I would take the pandora charm back - hopefully you still have the receipt and just say that it was the wrong colour or something and get your money back. If they won't give money back then get something nice for your or your ds.

Then go to a market or shop where they sell knock off / looky likey /--value range-- pandora type charms and get her one in not the right colour for a couple of quid. When she complains you can tell her that after you'd tried the value stuff she'd given to ds, you realised that there wasn't that much difference between the real stuff and value stuff and that applies even more so to pandora bracelets than it does to pot noodles (hope I haven't got muddled by this point and pandora bracelet woman was gilet giver - but even so - would still work, just get it from matalan instead say that you didn't realise she meant a real Pandora charm at £40, you're sorry but you just don't have the spare cash around at the moment much as you'd love to spend that on her).

And again, please please ask for the gilet receipt - it's not being rude if she gave your ds something that doesn't fit him. Even if he ends up with a manky brown gilet that does fit him instead of one that doesn't at least if it has tags on he might be able to return it for a gift card if you have no receipt or he'll wear it and be warm. Although if she has a ds that is a similar age to your ds but a bit younger then maybe it is one of his cast offs. You could say oh well, I'll give it back to your ds for his 21st as it doesn't fit my ds and I bet you chose it because you thought your ds would like it too... All sorts of ways to do something with it that wouldn't necessarily outwardly be rude. If you gave it back and said that ds thought it looked like a pile of puffy dog turd then yes, that would be rude. But to say that it was the wrong size isn't. And if she shrugs and says it can't be changed then you are still no worse off than you were before...

musicismylife Mon 03-Dec-12 10:49:18

I think the smart price potnoodle was meant to be a joke, you know haha hmm

JustFabulous Mon 03-Dec-12 10:53:53

A packet of nice chocolate biscuits would have been better than a smart price pot noodle!

Those posters saying how they don't buy for adult children of friends/you shoudn't are missing the point. The OP and her firends do and when you have for 20 years it is crap to make so little effort for their 21st.

AlienRefluxLooksLikeSnow Mon 03-Dec-12 10:56:03

Aw poor DS, he probably doesn't mind because he's thinking too much about going out with his mates, and lame presents off him Mums friends probably won't make or break his 21st. but I would be pissed off on his behalf too smile Long as he had a nice birthday though, don't go mad with their kids next year!

AlienRefluxLooksLikeSnow Mon 03-Dec-12 10:57:24

No!! Defo no pandora bracelet!! Shame as it's not the kids being so rubbish, but sounds like you can't really afford a gift like that anyway, take it back!

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 12:08:36

thanks again for the opinons - im unreasonable to feel unreasonable on his behalf grin

really its fine now. he has trotted off back to uni for a week, and i am chilling now with a brew and surveying the ruins of my house which needs a huge tidy up and clean, so need to crack on.

i think i just felt a bit sad for him, but as many an aspie mum will know its often us that feel the burn on their behalf - he is happy as larry actually and if he isnt he isnt showing it....i think its just a little telling. I felt a bit used i suppose but it is more about my feelings and i realise that.
He doesnt miss having family because he has never had any - i miss them on his behalf. He is lonely at uni and hasnt really managed to establish any friendships there, but 2 girls arrived here yesterday with armfuls of chocolate for him and spent the day, i thought uni would be full of misfits but he is yet to find any there.

anyway. all is well. He doesnt know that i was peeved about any of this btw. im fine now.

FayeKorgasm Mon 03-Dec-12 12:26:03

I understand where you are coming from Vicar

I have a 21 y o son as well. He might be an adult but he will always be my little boy.

StWinithread Mon 03-Dec-12 13:41:08

I am slightly resentful of my parents. I bought them both thoughtful/special gifts for their respective 60th birthdays, and for my 30th they didn't get me much, which was fine, but then a couple of months later they asked if I wanted something, a 'big present' kind of thing. I said 'no thanks', I can buy my own things, if you want to get me something nice for my birthday, great, but if it's months later then the moment is gone, and it's just silly.

QuickLookBusy Mon 03-Dec-12 16:35:56

Vicar, I'm glad you're feeling ok now.

I do think you're friends were mean and I certainly wouldn't be spending £40 on a friend's Xmas present.
Take it back, buy her something for a tenner and then spend that money on your dc. They will appreciate it far more.

ThatVikRinA22 Mon 03-Dec-12 16:50:54

thank you.

i asked DH earlier what he thought, because i really wondered if i was being unfair. Its not about what any of it cost, its more the absolute lack of any thought - my sister got my Dr Who obsessed DH a darlek air freshener for his birthday and he loves it - it sits in pride of place in the car. it must have cost all of £3 but she got something that she knew he would appreciate. He pointed out that this is the difference here - just an absolute lack of any kind of thought as to what he might appreciate. we had agreed we would buy for each others kids until 21, i just feel like its very one sided.

my friend had mentioned that she was thinking of getting him to bits of food to take back to uni and i had said that i tend to buy it all anyway - and yet she did it regardless, same friend who declared that i was going to be her bridesmaid just after my sister died and then told me i would have to pay for my own dress....i am too compliant. i never say no. i never rock the boat.
and today i was prescribed ADs which i thought maybe i didnt need until i have just burst into tears because i burnt the sausages....blush i think its just how im feeling at the mo. maybe it wouldnt normally have bothered me.

my other pal who got him the gilet, she is a treasure usually and i do rely on her for a listening ear, and her boy has SN too so we are really close - im going to still give her the pandora charm. ive bought it now. i think i need to look at my own people pleasing tendencies. Im starting the ADs tonight.

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