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What to do about Christmas presents?

(23 Posts)
Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:27:57

Just wondering what the norm is for buying Christmas presents (& birthdays too I suppose) for STBXH. Not from me as such but so our DCs have something to give. Mine both young still (8 & 4) so they don't really understand all about the recent separation. Split isn't exactly amicable so it's difficult for me to be thinking about spending any money on him but know DCs will want to give something.
If you do buy presents what do you spend? Any ideas for gifts?

Potentialmadcatlady Wed 26-Oct-16 22:36:46

I would give the 8year old a budget and take him/her shopping and let him/her buy what he/she wants to give their Dad..Mine where 8 and 6 when we first separated and it worked well for me...They bought the most awful presents but it was from them so not my responsibility- I just provided them with a token amount of money (£10)... He never provided maintainance and has done his very best to financially destroy me so presents weren't high on my agenda but it was important to the kids so I sucked it up. Their 'Dad' didn't do the same for me and my wonderful child used to make things for me so she had something to give me on Christmas Day

Fishface77 Wed 26-Oct-16 22:40:51

Nope don't do it!
Why do we always feel the need to rise above it? Take the high road? Surely kids need to learn that if you treat someone badly thee are consequences.
Potential your a better person than me I'd give him a glitter bomb and say the kids chose it grin

DelphiniumBlue Wed 26-Oct-16 22:40:56

Can they make something for him? sweets, biscuits, a drawing, some sort of crafty thing? Or maybe they can spend a bit of their pocket money and get something from a car boot sale?
That's all mine used to do for their Dad at that age ( not separated btw).
Another possibility is a book from The Book People ( good discounts). Or something from Primark - could they chose a t-shirt or one of those " for men at xmas" novelty type things?
The point is, you don't have to spend a lot of ( your ) money. This is purely for the DC to have the pleasure of giving, so should be pocket money prices.

Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:46:19

Thanks potential. That's a good idea. I am in same boat that STBXH is being particularly difficult about supporting DCs & so I am being really careful just now with money so really don't want to spend on him. But like you say it's important to the DCs. Sorry to hear your thoughtfulness wasn't reciprocated for you. It's was nice your DC made something for you though - sometimes these can be the best presents! I do wonder if STBXH will think to get anything for me from DC.

Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:49:27

Believe me fishface there are times where I think I will just not bother! Love the idea of a glitter bomb! Would want to see his face though to make it worthwhile!!

SantasLittleMonkeyButler Wed 26-Oct-16 22:50:29

I would do it for the children (if you can afford to). Most DCs enjoy giving gifts, and would probably like to be able to give their dad a present at Christmas.

That said, I wouldn't be putting personal effort in to it. A set budget (£10, £20 or whatever you think suitable) to spend when you are in town together - or even in Tesco - wherever.

The trouble with letting young DCs make a gift is that the OP will invariably end up having to give a lot of help (or more likely actually make the bloody thing) for someone she really doesn't want to be giving that amount of time & patience to right now. £10 in Tesco is much easier - if that £10 is affordable for you.

Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:51:48

Thanks for the ideas delphinium. Definitely will not be spending a lot. Already spending a fortune on legal costs which are due to him delaying things so planning on spending very little!

Akire Wed 26-Oct-16 22:55:02

Tell them they can buy him anything at all.... from the pound shop! If he's not even paying maintejce he can't complain. Quick shop job done. You don't want appear you made huge effort with home made stuff (nor begrudging all the mess you gave clean up either!)

Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:56:14

Yes santaslittle I am not in anyway inclined to be putting any effort in at all. But like you say the DCs are the ones that benefit from it.

Also since he left me for OW would it be wrong of me to feel that whatever they get him shouldn't be something he can share with her eg sweets?

Splishing Wed 26-Oct-16 22:57:51

akire - that's a great idea!

Potentialmadcatlady Wed 26-Oct-16 23:00:00

The homemade presents she made me mean far more to me because she made them... Now she is older I give her an allowance at Christmas and she takes her younger brother to go choose me something.. It means I'm paying for my own present but I do it because it's important to them... I really wouldn't care less if they never gave that 'man' a present ever again in their entire lives but it's important to them and they are what I care so I suck it up ( then take a tiny bit of satisfaction in the fact that they buy him some utter tat while I get something nice and carefully chosen)

Potentialmadcatlady Wed 26-Oct-16 23:01:53

Fish face- they buy him the most awful things and I just say 'lovely' when they show me it....( then smirk to myself when they aren't looking)

happyinthesunshine Wed 26-Oct-16 23:04:27

Help them bake gifts and wrap them. I help DD make biscotti as a treat for the multiple coffee drinkers in the family. It's inexpensive, looks impressive and children need to feel you are supporting their relationship with their dad. However upset you (understandably) feel, this is purely an act of kindness for them. Don't expect the goodwill to be returned. It seldom is.

Myusernameismyusername Wed 26-Oct-16 23:13:10

Mine always made pretty awful cups and plates thaf then of course he was forced to keep. Mwahahaha

Helpmeltb Wed 26-Oct-16 23:25:38

Similar situation. I've told the kids I will give them £10 each and take them to the shops. They can choose what they want. I said they could get him something each or put the money together for something bigger.

Lonecatwithkitten Wed 26-Oct-16 23:29:09

My birthday was the first event after we had split ExH did not help DD get me a present she was devastated that she had nothing to give me despite the fact that I reassured her I just needed her.
Regardless of how much of a shit he is I will not allow DD to be in that situation again. I do not do it for him I do it for her.

Muddlingalongalone Wed 26-Oct-16 23:32:30

I've done a mixture of homemade handprint/footprint etc, gifts DD1 chooses (either chocolate or something hideous) or gifts with a not very well hidden message that make me giggle but that he probably doesn't even notice e.g where's wally mug, muppet pjs etc

Joysmum Wed 26-Oct-16 23:38:30

Would he be buying something for the kids to give to you? Your best guidance is to mirror what you think he'll do for you from them.

Diamogs Thu 27-Oct-16 00:06:53

Let them bake him something yummy, don't be too worried about the odd hair or snot getting in it though grin

LellyMcKelly Thu 27-Oct-16 05:40:34

Take them to Poundland and give them a pound each. £2 if you're feeling extravagant. Do not waste time or money baking anything for him. Bake it for yourselves and enjoy it together.

Olddear Thu 27-Oct-16 06:53:51

Get him some novelty pants from poundland. Obviously, you wouldn't put itching powder, or hot chilli powder in them at all.....halo

Splishing Thu 27-Oct-16 21:06:40

Thanks for all ththe suggestions and advice. Much appreciated!

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