in thinking asking for money instead of a present is rude?(192 Posts)
That is it really, DS has come out of school today, with a party invite, to a party, in a few weeks and on the back the parent has wrote a blooming poem, saying how they want to choose their own gifts, so can we please give money, between £5 and £10 please, children from both classes have been invited, apparently not all, but about 40!
What is the matter with people[shocked] or am I out of touch these days...please let me know
Wow. So they've not only asked for money, but they've specified how much?
I think that's rude. And grabby.
We need to see the poem!
Utterly vulgar. The wedding requests for cash are bad enough but a child's birthday?
If they don't want lots of small toys and tat just say no presents. Fucking rude loons imo.
Please can we see the poem. Sounds very rude, poor children not having presents to unwrap
I'm gonna need to see that poem...
oh and YANBU. where do some people get off?!
While the invite to the party was nice
We did get a bit of a fright
Did you think it was funny
To ask for some money?
Or are you just grabby as fuck?
I'd be tempted to give an empty card in this situation but would feel bad for the child so would buy a gift. I would tell the mum that your child likes to choose presents for her friends so you hope she's ok with that. If she isn't okay with it then just take nothing.
bloody cheek of some people asking for cash in return for a child's birthday invite, they might as well just asked everyone to fund their own place at the party. What has the world come to where people have this level of brazenness?
to not post the poem
I don't usually swear. But as someone who has been a skint single parent for a long time who re-gifts things or buys stuff from the pound shop, that would really irritate me
Specifying an amount is a bit dodgy, but I'm always delighted to pop cash in a card for a child's birthday party. Way less hassle than buying and wrapping a present <lazy>
Well it is rude to ask, but from the age of about 8 onwards I always gave a flat, folding present, (£5 or £10 note) as I personally was fedup with finding something for around a fiver.
Sorry Johnny I was grinning at your poem, not your follow-up comment
Yanbu. Very cheeky if it's for a kids birthday party.
Wow! I assumed this was a wedding invite, not a child's party. That's absolutely shocking. Poor kid, it will reflect so badly on him even though doubtlessly it was his parents idea.
Why are people so mercenary these days?
I would be very tempted to send a present bought from the pound shop :-)
And put my own poem back on it to say that one of the joys of going to a party is choosing a nice present for your friend within the budget available.
I will probably get myself in trouble but here goes:
"My birthday party will be the best, please come along and be a guest, if you’re free on the party date, please come along and celebrate
My birthday party will be a treat, with lots of games and things to eat, so come along and join the fun, or you’ll be missed by everyone"
Then underneath that, the parent has put:
"Dear parents, DS is hoping he can choose his own gifts, so he would appreciate it, if you put £5 - £10 in a card and not buy a gift, Thank you.
I am so glad IANBU
Only took one post for the word "grabby" to appear. I have never seen this word outside these particular MN threads.
It is bloody rude and presumptuous though. Fair enough for a wedding - I never mind that - but a kid's sodding birthday party?
Years ago one of my DDs friends sent a gift list with the party invite which I thought rude and caused some playground eye raising - actual hysteria set on when same family gifted Xmas baubles to a 6 yr olds bday. In June.
Grabby and rude. I'd buy a gift and say it was a mistake if they were cheeky enough to query it. I'd absolutely no way give money if asked to do on an invitation.
They probably think it is okay as they have put a maximum figure!
YANBU, outrageously rude. I am completely
He's hoping he can choose his own gifts???? Why on God's earth would you encourage this bloody nonsense by actually asking the birthday guests to indulge him?
Bet you anything if he manages to rake in a couple of hundred, a large portion of it will be diverted elsewhere by his mum.
You are so not being unreasonable!! (So much so it was worth writing the whole phrase)
The thing is, I am happy to put money in a card, if for some reason we can't find anything nice or not had time to present shop but it is just the fact and the way they have asked has shocked me!
I think specifiying the amount is rude, however after a year of recycling the same bloody bead sets/craft sets/jigsaws/whatever toy is on special offer at Sainsburys at endless kids parties there is a small part of me that wishes I had the balls to say 'just give us a fiver in a homemade card!'
I would either hope my DC didn't want to attend, or buy a cheap gift. Surely the mum can't be as rude as to ask why you did it after she asked for money.
And if she is that rude then you have the perfect opportunity to tell her how rude she was in the first place.
Does that mean the child will end up with £200 - £400?
Cherry - there were some weeks I simply couldn't have given you a fiver in a home made card. So I would have had to recycle the bloody gift.
I feel like shit now I know what everyone thinks of that.
We got one like this last year specifying a particular set of toy or money. I can't remember what I did but I was a bit surprised.
If it were me and I wouldn't normally think twice about putting a fiver in a card I'd want to either buy a present or give nothing just on principle. I couldn't bring myself to appear like I was going along with their
It's beyond rude.
I'd stick £5 in a card, and send the RSVP with a little note saying my DC would like to choose their party bag, and hope it has XY and Z in it.
Not really, but I'd want to.
I actually might find myself doing something more fun with my DC that day. I bet the whole thing will be horrific.
What kind of party is it, anyway? [nosey]
Perfectly OK to choose to give money - especially to a child.
But staggeringly rude to ask for it!
Giving a present should be about the pleasure of choosing something you would like to share with the recipient. Eg my DD has been giving everyone copies of her favourite book series because she thinks they'll enjoy it as much as she has. You can't get any pleasure out of giving money.
I'd ignore it and give a gift anyway. Or not go.
Johnny there's nothing at all wrong with regifting.
Unbelievably rude. I'd Sellotape a pound coin into the card.
Or even better, give them this
Johnny, no sorry I didn't mean it like that! I just meant in our circle of friends everyone seems to give pretty much the same few gifts that cost about a fiver and at DD's party I certainly squirreled away a few to pass on at other parties (and no doubt a few of hers were regifted), as well as a card that no doubt cost a couple of quid. Just seems a bit pointless sometimes. But it's what everyone does (including me!)
No theme to the party.
The poem is written on the back, so I might just make out I have not seen it and buy a gift now out of principle
People are charging now to attend birthday parties. My friend got a softplay party invite & on it was a request for £12 for entrance & food on top of the present for the child. Needless to say she didnt go with her dd. In these harsh economic times, people are getting grabby & greedy. They still want things but expect others to pay for it instead. Read some of the posts on the wedding board about brides wanting to charge guests for the reception meal because they 'can't afford to feed everyone'. Really? But they can afford to spend 3k on a dress which will be worn for one day only. Mad!
Johnny I agree with Leo, you carry on doing what you want to do.
It's plain greedy, I would never have expected anyone to just give me money when I was a child. How times change and I'm not even that old. Whatever happened to be grateful for what you are given. Even just receiving a card should be good enough, after all it's the thought that counts.
Greedy, greedy, greedy
Wow! That is really, really rude for a child's party. Yes, I used to inwardly sigh at the pile of stuff we had to find homes for, much of which would never be played with beyond the first day but you just have to get on with it. I was always delighted if someone did put a fiver in a card but would never have dreamed of asking!
If Granny asks what little Johnnie wants for Christmas, I think it's fine to suggest money or vouchers.
I ask parents what sort of things a child is into. For a recent party, the Mum said she was hoping to get a specific Polly Pocket thingy, not that expensive but more than a gift from us, so I did give money and wrote a note in the card.
My children have each received cash in a card from school friends, and have been grateful, but I would never ask. Equally, Johnny, they love to unwrap gifts and there is no logic as to the one which takes their fancy (and it is as likely to be the one from the pund shop as a swanky set of something). In DD1's class, there is an unspoken "about a fiver, no more" rule, which I occasionally go over for her closest friends; having just had DS1's, three weeks into Reception (and as a mother of 4) I was a little shocked at some of the gifts (and speculated that the children must be only or hoped they were re-gifts) as we could not spend that per child. Hummmm.
YANBU, it is rude and rather gauche (and I almost certainly would send a gift in this instance, except that my child might be embarrassed).
The party will be cheerful and fun
And my son would be happy to come
But asking for cash is worthy of trash
And so stick the invite up your bum.
Yes it is rude, but I. An kind of see where the parents are going with this ...
I usually ask the mum what the child would like and if at a total loss usually give a voucher for a local toy shop or book store.
Perhaps the execution should be questioned
very rude. you are given what you get given. some dp gave vouchers or cash as dc were older but never expected.
Hilarious! In a dreadful kind of way.
Much as £200 minimum would be better than a pile of tat it would never occur to me to ask for cash. Mortifying. I'd get whatever you're planning on getting or give nothing. £5 is really impersonal and its like you're paying party entry. It's tempting to get nothing but for not wanting to be mean on the child.
Oh. My. Word.
lynette's Oxfam Unwrapped idea is good. We did this for a Christening present and often do for wedding presents.
So the birthday kid is going to end up with £200-£400
Rude, rude, RUDE!
I have no problems for weddings, close family (including nieces and nephews). I'll admit to suggesting money for my own kids from their uncles and grandparents.
I often give money and vouchers for kids birthday party gifts.
I do draw the line at requesting money for a kids party and specifying the amount. I
It's amazing how everyone has agreed this is rude yet when I've expressed the same opinion in relation to weddings, I've been shouted down.
It's rude for any occasion, if you ask me.
Rude rude rude.
The poem has the same rhythm as the Tree Fu Tom Theme which makes it even more irritating
I think it's really rude, we get a lot of invites like this and I always give a present instead.
Ds2 had a couple of people giving money rather than presents and he just lost it (I assume it just got incorporated into the family funds.)
um could it be that is really to pay for the party. . sort of. . my fit reaction is that it's rude..but then its easy to forget that money added together can mean something really special useful etc whereas 40 crap pen sets and action figures are just so much plastic...
Yes it's rude.
But it's the world we live in.
I know many teenagers and adults who don't appreciate a gift unless it came from a prescribed list.
There seems to be a prevailing thought 'unless it's exactly what I asked for, I don't want it'.
And it's not just children.
I think many people have forgotten the meaning of 'gift'.
Though the party will be great
And we have choclate
parties arent fun
when you resent everyone
for the cost of the things on the plate,
so please would you think
of the cost of the drink
and the effort that we have put in
and please be a dear
put a fiver in clear
and help us clean up in the sink
It's rude. I would not give money, it's just plain rude to ask.
The only time I think it is acceptable is when it is charitable donations in lieu of gifts.
It also annoys me when people put money in a card instead of a gift, it says to me that they couldn't be bothered to find a suitable gift.
On my God daughters 2nd birthday her mum had taught her to say she wanted money as a gift! We gave it but not before we told the mum how disgusted we all were with her.
Surprisingly I don't see this mum anymore, but because of something much worse.
Id definitely bring a gift and f the request.
Send a note saying your DC wants money instead of a party bag.
When it comes to adults, I understand the request for money. Money is important to grown-ups. Presents are really important for DCs. For those who say this is hypocritical, it's really not (for a number of reasons).
I prefer it tbh.
I wouldn't ask for money for my DC's unless i was specifically asked what they would like, but if they were going to a party I'd much prefer handing money over than faffing round trying to think of a present the birthday child might like, which they probably won't which would then by recycled as a present or on eBay or whatever but likely not to be used at all by the receiver.
I thought this was another wedding one. I like being asked for money for weddings as I like to feel I've given people something they need or happy honeymoon memories.
But not for a birthday party, it's one thing to ask granny, who wastes money on awful clothes for cash, but not school friends.
Very rude, you have no idea of people's circumstances and how many other birthdays they have to buy for this month.
In any case re-gifting duplicates and lucky bargains sometimes get DCs gifts worth more than normal not less.
That is not to say, now the DDs friends are older, that I mind giving cash, if I ask what they want.
But not a blanket request.
vivienne, that is a great idea, but i suspect that there will be a stall at the party selling party bags. With upgrade options.
My dd went to one of these. It was a leaving party for a 6 year old. They asked for a £10 to buy a new bed at the new house. I resented putting it in. As a friend took my dd I asked what happened when she got the card and she said, "oh her mummy just collected all the cards in!"
Jonny my brother and I have been regifting the same £5 for about 10 years now
Very very rude.
I would definitively buy a present out of principle now.
Has she friends that can point out how rude she's been?
Asking for £10 for a year 6 leaving party ... Please tell me it wasn't the end of summer term when they all left.
If someone asked that anyone who was thinking about getting a present to give cash then I would consider the many reasons they might have done this and just comply. It's fine by me not to bother my arse to rummage round the shops in the hope of finding an £8 gift on sale for £3.
But specifying £5-£10 is a bloody cheek. Maybe they've got an unexpected parking fine and have worked out the maths.
That's really rude!
As they've got older, I usually bung a fiver in a card and be done with it
I used to have a present box which I kept stocked with 3 for 2/bogof/sale bargain presents as I could get more for my money and didn't have a last minute gift buying panic. They'd have got a gift from the box just to be awkward
Good lord. I have never ever heard of this. I even think it's bad taste when couples ask for money/pay for our honeymoon when they get married (oh, but we already have everything, it's a wedding, you get nice presents, shut up) but for a child's birthday?????? And then to specify the acceptable amount??!!!!
I wouldn't go. One the one hand, I'd hate my DC to miss out, on the other, I would not want to attend and show I was condoning this as acceptable behaviour.
Also, call me cynical, what's to say the DC gets the cash? They might pass on £50 which seems like a fortune to a teeny person, and you've just contributed to the mother's shopping fund.
Out of curiosity, how old are the birthday children?
There was a thread on here a while ago about a trend in Canada for all children to give about £1 so the child could choose their own present. Most people thought that was a good idea
I think it's the amount that makes this objectionable. If the parent had asked for £1 per child, we'd probably think that was OK. Child could choose one bigger present + no one has to go shopping = everyone's a winner
saulaboutme that's disgraceful! Glad you told her what you thought
really want to know what she did that was far worse now
This thread has made me feel rather out of touch. The number of people,who seemed to say "yes it was rude but by god I don't want the plastic shite stick a few pounds in a card don't be giving it to me" has saddened me.
I will say it again. When I was a lone parent, on benefits, that plastic re gifted tat and a home made card was all I had. I gave it with the right thought. Dd would have gone through my present box and picked something she thought the child would have liked. Thought and care would have gone into it.
And I dislike money for weddings and wedding gift lists for the same reason.
We had one of these! So shocked I declined the party.
Johnny - I think the save as you. I am appalled that somebody would ask for money for a child's birthday party gift. I always think that only a token gift should be taken to a birthday party. I would never dream of asking for money for the simple reasons that a small gift is often much cheaper than £5 and children enjoy unwrapping gifts and seeing what their friends have got them.
I have hosted parties where some people have just brought a card along and that is absolutely fine. I would rather somebody brought a card (even homemade) than thought that they couldn't come at all because they didn't have a present to bring.
Parties are supposed to be about the children enjoying their birthday with their friends, not about amassing a huge pile of expensive presents / a big wad of cash.
If the birthday parents had specified that 'we don't want anybody to bring gifts (no mention of cash as a replacement) as DD has everything that she needs and we don't want people to spend money needlessly then it would seem more acceptable. Those that really don't want to come without a gift would probably stick a fiver in a card anyway. Win win.
I would decline the invite. If ny child asked why, I'd tell them the truth.
Where we used to live one of the Mum's started Percy Pig.
A long story but the youngest of her 3 girls really, really didn't need any toys/things/clothes etc and the amount of parties & presents we were all dealing with was somewhat ridiculous. Basically all spending a fortune but essentially sending the same gifts.
I can't remember how she worded it (not with a bloody poem) but basically said, 'Please don't bring presents, just come and enjoy the party. However, if the children really wanted to 'bring something' and you don't want to argue about it, they could bring a coin for Percy Pig. The idea took off and Percy went from party to party The kids going to the parties, loved putting the coins into Percy and the Birthday Child enjoyed spending the money - which was around £20/£40. Perfect solution.
demand request you got was plain rude!!
£1 in a Percy Pig sounds like a brilliant solution.
There was a terribly sad but ultimately uplifting thread a while (year?) ago where someone was so totally skint she was considering not sending her daughter to a party. The only thing she could send with her daughter was a small box of Maltesers and a home-made card.
The overwhelming consensus on the thread was that most children would be completely delighted with a whole box of Maltesers for their very own, and that they'd far rather have their friend at the party than not for the sake of a pound.
But there were some people who sniffed and said you shouldn't turn up to parties empty handed. And they got called names.
We once tried asking for no presents. It wasn't a huge party and I knew a lot of the parents and I felt comfortable saying that we didn't want
more crap presents. (And yes my DC were totally on board). It ended up not working at all as some people still brought presents. This left those with presents feeling a bit and those who didn't bring presents a bit .
We didn't do it again. It wasn't my greatest plan
Why the hell would you invite 40 children to a party???????
My dcs would have up to 6 friends, children whose parents we knew, who would always say "is there something specific little Master Bowie wants?"
So I could give ideas...sometimes the mums would club together to get a bigger item.
People must have houses full to the brim with crap by having big parties.
no thats so rude
and specifying the AMOUNTS ffs
It's very rude and I would make a point of giving a present rather than the cash.
Or you could be really evil and send £5 - get it in 1p coins. Get a large sheet of card and superglue them on. Then let ds loose with a permanent marker or two and get him to draw a nice pretty pattern around them (maybe turn it into a money tree with the coins as leaves or a money pit or a money grab stall) ensuring the pen goes on plenty of the coins.
Then wrap it up.
Nice big present to hand over and a big task for them to actually get the coins off the card and make them usable... [evil laugh]
It's not like they specified it had to be a note!
And then tell some of the other mums you are friendly with to do the same and they'll end up with the money but a hell of a task to actually get the money.
If you're feeling particularly
like making them learn a lesson creative, you could add some foreign coins to help make up part of the value. So the child will have some money to spend when he next goes on holiday...
Or go for a nice little picture of a five pound note ina frame to put on his wall. Or one of those packs of tissues printed like a £20 note. Or a big rubber in the shape of a £5. Or a cash book for him to keep track of all his money, who gave him what and what he spends it on. Or anything else money themed that can't be spent. If he ended up with a big pile of money things but lots of stress and not so much to put in
his parents pocket the bank they might realise how grabby they sounded!
Thank you catsize
When people do something like this that gets my goat, there is a particular pleasure to be had in doing what they say to the letter but subverting their intentions
It is a bit rude.
But I would just give the money in a card and say no more about it.
I'd probably be grateful that I didn't have to choose a gift but miffed I'd have to spend £10 <never bloody happy>
First thought after seeing the title was no - my darling nephew is in yr11, works 2 part time jobs, predicted good grades, asking for money for Christmas and his birthday almost immediate after as he is saving for a new bike.
But after reading your post I think it's offensive. You can't specify a gift like that.
I once received an invitation for a christening that specified they only wanted money or disney DVDs as gifts (I hate disney ).
I love love love the Oxfam idea, that might get them thinking about how greedy and grabby they are and that there are kids that simply need the basics in life.
oh and stick a poem on it.
let us know what you decide!
Disney dvd's as christening gifts??? How random. Bit cheeky to be so certain you'll be inundated with Christening gifts as to dictate what's acceptable
Yes it's rude but I wish it wasn't. Ds collects Hornby trains and is always saving for various sets. He'd far rather get £5 or £10 towards that than a present he won't use and I will recycle.
What ever happened to a gift being a gift rather than a response to a request? [sceptical]
Disney DVDs for a Christening?!
Have decided I am happy as an old-fashioned Catsize.
even. So bloody old-fashioned, I can't use emoticon thingies.
Sorry I have not read all responses. OMG I am shocked they asked for money but then to top it off they specified an amount . Brilliant! PMSL...
We once received a wedding invite which asked for money. I wish I still had it to share the poem. DH went mad at the cheek and point blank refused to give them any money. To say the list they got a present from us.
Just told DH about this post and his off ranting.
That's very rude!
However it's not the child's fault. I would give a wrapped gift as usual.
> when I've expressed the same opinion in relation to weddings, I've been shouted down
We must have been on different threads! I agree it's rude to ask for presents or money for any of these occasions, and have seen lots of MN-ers who think the same.
Sparkly why don't you buy the presents off him? Win-win
Whilst I can see how it is bit cheeky, I'd rather give £5 than buy something the kid doesn't want of has in duplicate.
That's only fair actually Leo he would love you for suggesting that. By the way guess what his name is?
OMG how rude, even worse than charging an entry fee for a wedding translated as bride asking for cash as you cany be trusted to choose your own gift.
Kids' bday definitely rude. But I'm an old fart and think it is rude for anything - my niece demanded money on her wedding invite. So I took nothing. She would have got a present, but she was marrying a bloke who could pay a huge deposit on a country cottage - cash, and is only 23. I live in a council house. Sorry, money isn't going to happen, love.
"between £5 and £10 please" means "£5 or £10 note, but if it's the former we'll think you're a little bit cheap". I would put £7.49 in the card just to mess with their heads.
Half the excitement is the opening of the presents. These parents are bypassing that and going for the materialistic juggular. Ugh.
what noddingoff said. Proper sniggering at them wondering why £7.49
Thanks for the invite to your birthday bash
I'd love to attend and I'll bring you some cash
But when it's over and you hand me my coat
Forget a shitty party bag - I'll have a ten pound note!
I've brought you a fiver
for your birthday tea.
There's also an invoice
for my attendance fee.
Love the poems.
Wondering if the child is VAT registered.
'Can't wait for the party. Is the admission fee inclusive of VAT?'.
A friend of mine once asked for money instead of gifts for her 30th birthday. I know several people who were so offended by this they didn't even bother going to her party.
its weird isn't it ? - most of us hate all the tat you get at kids birthday parties (be honest you can't get anything much for £5-10), but somehow we are offended if someone puts into words the idea that it would be nicer to put all those contributions together to get something nicer. And then want to buy a present just to annoy them !
Personally I don't find it rude - I find it honest. But I guess I would prefer the no presents option instead. I hate the implication that the party is an excuse to get lots of extra presents (as if kids aren't already inundated with presents anyway). I wish we could get to the point that the party it the reward in itself - a chance to have fun with your friends and nothing more.
So glad mine are past this age and I don't have to jump through this hoop anymore
just reading through a lot of these comments - why would you rather a buy a present for someone knowing it is likely to be something they wouldn't have chosen for themselves ? Isn't that a waste of your hard earned cash ?
Why woudn't you rather give them the money and let them choose ? Is it because you don't want them to know exactly how much you choose to spend ? Or does it make you feel awkward trying to judge how much looks ok - too little looks stingy, too much looks extravagant.
Genuine questions. It has puzzled me for years - it is definitely a cultural norm in the UK.
At our school we buy one joint present for the child. We usually put in £5 and the children have got some fantastic toys, usually lego or playmobil.
The system works well, as a parent you normally take a turn once a year to buy the present. If its your child's birthday they get a decent present and not all the little things which can bw fun but clutter up the house.
What a great idea, margetts.
I agree with posters who say it would be better to have the money to spend on what you what than a present you will never use.
But there is no polite to say this without sounding unbearably materialistic. And I think the thing that has shocked most posters is (a) the specification of the amount and (b) the fact that a small child will trouser around £300 minimum for his birthday. Just vulgar.
I hate this, my SS and his wife put such a poem on their wedding invites. I know for a fact his dad for one put a lot more in than we would have spent on a present (or I would have chosen it probably) because the thing that's distasteful is that they know exactly how much you have spent on them so as others have said what if you're skint or wanted to recycle a bottle or something.
Don't get me wrong it was his sons wedding and we wouldn't have got them cheap tat but just wouldn't have spent as much if it wasn't so 'visible'. The fact we knew it was his WTB's idea too went down equally well
not same as the rest of her bridezilla antics and endless rows she has caused in family since (whole other thread).
Plus it thwarts my little game that l know many others do.
I buy stuff in closing down sales/seasonal sales and put them away for presents. I always think when l got a crystal vase for example that should have been £50 but cost £25 what difference does that make to the recipient who had clear glass vases on her wedding list? I once bought a variety of beautiful clutch evening bags in a clearance sale - should have been £25 and they were £5. Gave them to various friends/family for birthdays etc and they loved them and l still see them use them on occasion. But this new trend stops all that [sulks]
<eyes up wardrobe full of sale goodies and wonders if can still remember ebay password>
Books usually cost between £5 and £10, don't disintegrate on touch, and store without fuss. They are now my go-to for children's parties.
Maybe it would be less awful if they set a £5 limit.
But you're right suburban there is no way to ask without sounding materialistic.
I think it would be fine with a £5 limit
That would actually be a clever way to do it if you wanted a big party but didn't want a mountain of tat. You could say
no presents required if you are not sure what to buy
hint, hint then cash present would be welcomed up to a maximium of £5
That doesn't sound half as grabby and you would still end up with mostly cash presents plus you wouldn't have pissed everyone off.
I know as a child I'd have been delighted to open presents, however small. I would have been bored stiff opening £5 after £5, and trawling round the shops.
'just reading through a lot of these comments - why would you rather a buy a present for someone knowing it is likely to be something they wouldn't have chosen for themselves ? Isn't that a waste of your hard earned cash ?
Why woudn't you rather give them the money and let them choose ? Is it because you don't want them to know exactly how much you choose to spend ? Or does it make you feel awkward trying to judge how much looks ok - too little looks stingy, too much looks extravagant.'
It's dictating to your guests what you find acceptable as a present and assuming they are too tacky and stupid to give a gift you'd find appropriate, and also that you threw the party with gifts in mind. I don't throw parties for gifts but to celebrate an occasion. I don't want my guests, who may be struggling financially, to feel they have to give me or my child anything and if they do, that it has to be money or nothing.
That's fucking tacky.
It is a bit direct, but I don't think it was meant to be rude though. What i do think is wrong is that they asked for a specific amount - now that I DO think is a bit rude and presumptuous.
But I have to stick my neck above the parapet here and say that last year for DS 8th birthday I said in the invitation words along the line that it was more important that the kids came and enjoy the party - and told parents not to get into a tizz looking for a gift but IF they wanted to get a gift that DS would be happy with a voucher or book token.
This was said from the perspective of someone who finds it hard looking for a gift for children I don't know, and receiving duplicated gifts of things DS already has, etc, and not wanting to inconvenience people ....
I did not think that was rude at the time,and did indeed receive a mixture of vouchers, tokens and gifts. We had a small party of 6 children though not 40 peeps.
TooMuchCaffine. I think your invites were nothing like the one the OP received. Your were polite and not grabby.
I dont think there is anything that bad about it. Imo a gift should be for the benefit of the receiver, so if they want money (and I assume it would be to pool together to buy something more expensive) then if that is what they have asked for, then that's is what they should get. Buying something that the receiver neither needs nor wants, just to satisfy yourself just rings of superiority/smugness/weirdness.
Stating an amount was a slightly grabby, but it was such a low amount they maybe thought they were being helpful. TBH if you cant afford a fiver in a card, then any present is almost likely to be cheap shit for less than a fiver (imo).
£10 a low amount for a non-close friend/non-relative?
Not in my world.
I think choosing, giving and receiving of surprise presents is supposed to be a pleasure.
When it gets overly practical or mercenary, it takes away from that somewhat.
You might as well say that all these celebrations and presents for various occasions and people eventually cancel each other out financially, so let's never have any of them!
ILove - you don't get fivers on buy-one-get-one-free but you definitely get toys and books that way.
That is rude. That said, when it was my DS's birthday, several parents asked me what he would prefer to get/what he was into. I said that he was trying to save up for an ipad so would probably prefer money but would be happy with anything.
I never put it on an invitation though and was a pains to say that if they did choose to give him money to please only give a small amount. I think most of them were relieved to not have to make a visit to the toy shop. And they money he received ranged from £5 to £20! (which I thought was craziness and made me feel bad as I would certainly be closer to the £5 mark, possibly £10 for a close friend).
its rude to say it in writing, but we all give cash after age 7 or 8 round here, and the kids can buy an xbox or nintendo game for instance
sometimes people give a football or clothes, but thats about all
My budget for a primary child in the same class at school was at most, a fiver. Almost all the presents in my box were bogofs or reduced and worth around that. But some were worth less.
I know have a sense that for some of those on here, they were worthless.
Any that makes me really very sad.
Specific young the cost is U.
Asking for money politely- they're saving up and would love to add a few pounds to their fund for x, y and z, but if you give anything it would be amazing- that's fine. Giving/asking for money isn't wrong, in a poem/specifying the amount is. It's probably a lot nicer for the child who doesn't get tat or small things and gets something they actually really, really wants. If you can't afford it (I can't afford a £5 per birthday!) then a physical gift should be accepted and thanked, as all,presents should be, and it's only if that's not happening when the person becomes a twat.
Oh wow that is so rude.
please do as Lynette suggested!
There's no polite way to ask for money. If I asked for ideas for what to get someone for their birthday, then it means I'd like to give them a present they can open and I don't expect to get "money" as a reply.
I can only wonder whether the parents are hoping to use the guests contributions to help buy their main (expensive) gift for the DC
or pay off their debts
it is rude rude rude
no wonder we have some of the entitled bridezilla threads we do
I don't have a problem with people (politely) asking for cash or vouchers - I would much, much rather give something that I know can go towards something that is really wanted.
In this case though the fact that an amount has been specified would annoy me.
I always ask the parent of party child, "is there anything, so and so would, like/need for her birthday?" I am rubbish at present buying and am happy when I am given a little guidance as I don't want to waste Wonga on tat on something they don't want or like.
My dd's have never been given a present at a birthday party that they didn't like. You can't really go wrong with books, pens, pencils. If you know the child well then you would know whether they would like an art kit or lego etc.
Without going over the top, isn't receiving the occasional present you're not too keen on just something that happens in life?
When so much plastic crap goes to landfill why not make sure that your money is spent on something that is actually wanted?
It doesn't bother me. When DS got invited to a party and the mum asked for money I was pleased I didn't have to think about what to buy her child, and at least I knew that the child would get something they really really wanted rather than a load of cheap stuff they might not be into. (Unless the mum spent it on wine and takeaway after having a party for squillions of 5 year olds!)
But if you buy a surprise present, who's saying it has to be plastic tat?
As a developing minimalist presents really bother me - I just don't want them. I'd LOVE to be able to ask for cash obo DD. I'd love to be able to say no presents please too.
If i did either, I think we'd still end up with all the presents (and no doubt I'd be called rude/ungrateful etc). Clearly what the birthday person wants/needs etc is NOT as important as the feeling the giver of the gifts gets by giving something they want to give.
Which isn't what it's meant to be about is it?
And at least 60% of the gifts a child gets at a party is plastic tat.
DD was invited to a party once and invite stated something about the birthday boy living in quite a small house so a gift of £2 would be appreciated, which I thought was fine.
Asking for £5-£10 though? Not cool.
If all parents coughed up, the party child would have £200-£400! I only had £40 for the my jeffing 30th birthday!
Seriously bad form IMO. Suspect same people don't send don't thank you cards either. Bloody cheek.
Oops I meant 'who don't send thank you cards'.
It's v late..
I wouldn't notice the poem, and buy the boy a nice book. How old is the birthday boy?
But there is no polite to say this without sounding unbearably materialistic.
"No gifts please" works perfectly well if you don't want "plastic tat".
The more i read on this, the more i think it's a non issue.
Yes, it's a bit up front for my english sensitivities, but I think if you go to a birthday party you should take a gift.
£5 or £10 sounds reasonable, depending on your budget and relationship with the child/parent.
If a guest can't afford that then the aforementioned "maltesers solution" sounds great.
Don't make a fuss and create awkwardness for the child. Just pop a fiver in the card. I think there's a lot of precious behaviour from givers of gifts sometimes.
"No gifts please" still elicits judgey pants when it comes to children's birthday parties - "poor child, what a mean thing to do to him/her"
I'm with Threalamandaclarke (although in my case it's my Scottish/UK sensitivities), but asking for cash is perfectly acceptable and the norm in many other countries. Perhaps it's the problem of the gift giver rather than the receiver.
Imagine how wonderfully easy birthday parties would be if we could just put a note in a card - BLISS!!!!!
And how fab for a child to have some cash to spend, some cash to save - wonderful.
YABU - whats not to love? May it spread like a new wonderful trend!!
BeCool - I couldn't agree more!
In fact. I really think it's a great idea. It teaches them how to save up for things too.
Why would anyone prefer to trawl the shops and choose a gift (it's always going to cost at least a fiver, plus wrapping paper).
There's so much risk: duplicate gifts, unwanted item, cluttering up a fellow parent's home with toys, your own time used up.
And especially when there are so many guests. It will also take ages to unwrap everything. Especially if all the gift givers insist on a public unveiling of their offering.
Becool I agree. More of this please.
You have two choices. You can ask for money or you can have the same gift your child took to a friend's party. I like the second option better. Same with weddings. I'd rather have lots of butter dishes than ask for money. At least I could donate the butter dishes to charity.
Wasn't there a thread on here about being charged to attend a dinner party?
I think it also depends on the age of the child. I give my children the cash and they buy the present and the card and the wrapping paper. They wrap it up too. I'm rather impressed at how much my daughter manages to get for the money. That's a good skill to have - picking good presents. I haven't actually set foot in a toy shop for years. Of course I've done my time but it's pretty much over.
Be cool - what would you have suggested I do then? As a broke single parent, who simply didn't not have a note (or coins) to put in a card. Which would have been home made because I didn't have the money for that either ...
A gift is not to be expected. By asking for cash you are asking for a gift and specifying the form. I did that rude.
I still have about half of the presents ds received and will never use. I will probably give them to charity for Xmas presents. (I accept that I am fortunate enough to be able to afford to do this and not regift). This year I am tempted to ask for no presents but actually ds get a lot of pleasure from seeing what his friends have given him and he also enjoys giving them a gift.
Maybe it is an age thing though - ds is still quite small and has only been going to parties for a couple of years
If you can't afford a gift just don't give one.
It's fine. I personally wouldn't be in the slightest bit bothered.
I am surprised that it's so desirable to have or give a lot of shit that nobody wants.
I wont do cash or gift vouchers now by choice after reading on MN that parents often spend the money or vouchers within the household budget or on other sibling. Certainly never did it when asked for as its rude and grasping.
yes to me asking for money is vulgar and somehow mercenary unless someone asks first what dc would like or suggests it. would ds like a voucher from boy x for his birthday.
At our school it is very common for the parents of the children invited to a party to ' club together ' for one larger gift instead of lots of little ones HOWEVER an amount is never specified and if the child invited wants to choose and buy their own gift for their own friend that's absolutely fine too. It's always worked well, but then we've never had a crap accompanying poem and a specified, expected amount ...
But Thereal. I give something my child has chosen. From my present box. So it might be a small toy. It might be colouring pencils, a book, but my child has picked it. There is thought and care and dare I say it, love in the gift from her.
How dare anyone diss that. How disrespectful. And nasty. And pure plain rude. Don't fucking bother with fuck all if you can't give money I'd rather just have a card seems to be a common attitude and it frankly disgusts me. An saddens me. And makes me realise the life I lived a lot of you on here will never comprehend.
That is awful.
Though when asked what DS woukd like I often say "he'd be thrilled with a pound in a card". Is that grabby too?
Johnny5needsinput I'd suggest you do exactly the same as you would do now.
If it was acceptable to give a note in a card that wouldn't mean it was compulsory. Not everyone would. Just as when people ask for no gifts people still give them.
So you would still do whatever you do now. Maybe no gift (I'm totally cool with that -the obsession with presents is ridiculous IMO and even worse that it makes people on low budgets feel bad), maybe regift something, make something - just do what you do and please please please don't ever feel bad about not giving the "norm" of some plastic tat.
Home made cards are by far the best BTW, if you have the time to sort it out. I try to do them but don't always succeed. I encourage my DC to make cards too, and I keep a stash of cheap cards from Tiger at home for when we can't (.50p each and they are really lovely).
Paying £3 a card each time is utter nonsense. And some people like to spend loads on wrapping paper/bags etc - I recycle what we get in, and use old artwork of the DC as wrapping paper if I can. I have a birthday of someone close/important nearly every day of the first 2 months of October. Even as a FT working single parent I couldn't afford to cover the cards if I was to buy one for each person. Thank goodness for home-made cards, Tiger cheapies, and FB posts for those living abroad.
The worst that can happen is a parent wouldn't send their child to a party because they don't have card/present - and I've read about both sides of the story here on MN. Let's never lose site of the fact that children's parties are for children to celebrate with their friends, and feel special. Presents/cards should be an afterthought - the icing on the cake so to speak, not the focus of the day.
Just to add I'm a SP too - the difference is I work FT. We aren't poor, we have enough but we are far from rich. My main stress point is time - I don't have time to shop for kids birthday gifts (in fact I rarely spend time at any shops at all), and if I did have more time I would spend it with my DC, not on shopping for presents for DC's classmates. So a note in a card is my idea of a fantastic solution.
I think it's fine.
I'm all for giving people what they want.
Be cool. To address your points.
At the time I was physically incapable of working. I am happy to elucidate my various ailments including cancer to you by pm but I am not going to put them publicly on a thread.
So the wee dig about me not working at that point is a bit low. Yes i was on benefits. But I was anything but a lazy layabout who couldn't be arsed to go to work.
I now work full time in a professional job. Fwiw.
johnnie seriously I wasn't having a dig at you - I misread your post and incorrectly (and foolishly) assumed you weren't working. My mistake.
No dig [flower]
I never said you were lazy. As a SP on low income you have my full respect.
But johnny I'm not dissing your present. I think that's a nice idea.
I remember the maltesers thread and thought that would be a great gift. Genuinely.
It's just that I don't think there's anything wrong with specifying or giving money as long as it's obvious it's not compulsory and it's not an excessive amount.
Some ppl have said they would rather receive things that never get used, or get recycled to someone else or to a charity shop. I am surprised that ppl are really happy with that. It seems rude to expect someone else to be happy with that.
I have DD's 6th birthday approaching - along with Xmas this is starting to stress me out. We (me and 2 DC) live in a one bed flat and I've had to do loads of decluttering just to make it bearable. The idea of lots of incoming presents (she doesn't need) freaks me out.
I would like to be able to say to the people who ask what the DC want, money please or a book or nothing would be great too. But most people would think I was being rude. Because its not the 'norm'.
And Norm is really starting to fuck me right off. As then I have an obligation to find a home for the gifts. And we simply don't have the room. So they start to degrade our day to day life (I am thinking in particular of a couple of very large hideous gift from last birthday), or they go straight to the charity shop. And yet so many on this thread would call me ungrateful and rude!!
Johnny I never said you were lazy and nor did I think it - it never crossed my mind. Perhaps you have me confused with someone else?
It's really depressing when you're broke
and you would.like yur child to take part in the fairly normal childhood practice if taking a present to his friend's party. And you can make it happen.by.being careful and creative. But it turns out cash is what's wanted.
I recently sent cash for a wedding present. Bank transfer.no less. Not as much as most guests I'm sure. Mire than I would have spent on a present. Felt dreadful, but I won't go into debt.
#5 it #10. That is a lot for some people. It's inconsiderate inconsiderate to ask for money and specify the amounts.
nfk just remember cash is what is wanted/asked for by the parents for whatever reason.
the child will always be delighted to receive your gift.
tricky one be cool.
kids stuff does create so much clutter looking around my own place where 2 have left home for a while.
DD1 is having a small tea party this year - 6 friends.
I doubt DD2 will ever have a rented-hall-type-mad-party and one of the main reasons is
I we can't cope with all the gifts.
I think it's the way it's done that makes it rude because it makes you feel like you have to give cash. IMO you should never be made to feel a gift is compulsory.
I don't have a problem giving money towards a specific bigger item, if I ask the recipient what they would like but the way people phrase things in twee little poems make you feel that nothing we could give would be good enough.
DH and I have just declined an evening wedding invitation because the gift list was so rude.
MIL's friend buys all the gifts from her sons list then invites people to buy them from her to give to him!
We have never had more than 12 guests to a party and that include a couple of sets of siblings so we have never had mountains of stuff. I don't get these parties where you invite the whole class even if you never play or talk to some of them. This means we have not had masses of stuff.
Well I have to agree it is rude to ask for something as part of an invite.
But if asked, then a request for cash (or sweets, or nothing) would be fine by me.
Then you say, 'no gifts' or ask for donations to your child's fav charity.
But ppl like to give something, usually. So it would be better just to not mention it until ppl ask. But then I think it's perfectly ok to mention money at that point.
Make it a gift voucher.....for 4.99.....bloody cheek!
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