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I am seriously considering opting out of exchanging gifts next year

(16 Posts)
YourHandInMyHand Sat 13-Dec-14 20:21:00

My family (siblings and children) is getting bigger and bigger and it's getting such an expense! Im a single mum with one child. This year I wittled down the budget on gifts for sensible reasons but after a conversation with my mum today where she admitted she is struggling financially with christmas and it's getting her down I feel like showing her some solidarity and saying to everyone that next year I am not buying gifts and don't want to receive any.

My DS and his cousins all have everything they need and more, and it's not what Christmas is about.

Not sure how well it will be received as the houses with bigger family units don't seem to acknowledge the expense - it's becoming the elephant in the room. I don't want Christmas to be a struggle, I want to enjoy it next year for what it is and I don't want my mum worrying about making ends meet when she should be just enjoying seeing her family of children and grandchildren.

YourHandInMyHand Sat 13-Dec-14 20:21:46

Hate to post and run but am away from computer for a while now, will return tomorrow. smile

ChristmasJumperWearer Sat 13-Dec-14 20:23:39

How about suggesting that you buy for the children only (up to a defined age) and then grown-ups get secret Santa presents with a set price limit? That would certainly bring the cost down, but everyone still gets a present.

makemineapinot Sat 13-Dec-14 20:24:30

Why don't you suggest a secret Santa? Then you'll only have to buy 2 presents - 1each from you and your dc. My db and I stopped giving gifts for adults fir a few years when dc were tiny due to lack of cash! Just gave to our parents and the kids.

RandomMess Sat 13-Dec-14 20:24:42

Do you all buy for everyone or just the children?

We decided to just buy for the children (under 18/19 - whatever) we then bring a silly secret santa gift for the adult we pick out at random. Another time we played a tacky present game which involved rolling dice, stealing, swapping or giving away various tacky presents that we'd brought along - max budget of £5.

It took about 5 years of suggesting no adult presents for the rest of the family to agree but I think they all wish they'd agreed years ago!

TobyLerone Sat 13-Dec-14 20:25:14

We do Secret Santa for the adults and then just buy for the children. It's much better.

WildFlowersAttractBees Sat 13-Dec-14 20:32:08

I agree a family secret santa is the way ahead. Set a limit of say £20 and each person brings a gift. So you and DD would be £40 a sibling with a DH and 3DC's would be £100. Seems fair to me (and I say that as the sibling with the most DC's!).

KERALA1 Sat 13-Dec-14 20:34:50

We put names in hat of all adults. Draw name you get that person only a present of around £20-£30. Buy for children. Works well. Don't bother with the secret bit got too confusing

TobyLerone Sat 13-Dec-14 20:41:49

That's what we do, Kerala. Limit of £60. There are 8 adults in our Secret Santa, so it works out much cheaper than buying individually, but is enough to get something nice.

For all the nieces/nephews, my sisters and I have a complicated system where we put in £10 for each child we didn't give birth to, and get them something decent. There are 4 of us, so each child ends up with presents to the value of £30, if that makes sense? We also do the same for each others' birthdays -- each sister puts in £10 towards a present.

YourHandInMyHand Thu 18-Dec-14 18:14:18

Feel awful I didn't come back! blush Sorry everyone!

We only buy for kids and grandparents already. Secret santa wouldn't work as 1 sibling often "forgets" their neice's and nephews birthdays and xmas hmm so whichever child/ren that adult drew are running a high risk of receiving nothing while the other kids get something.

I'm still unsure but am thinking it will just be a small token eg large box of chocs for each house or something cheap for each child. Have done group presents in the past but now the age ranges have widened it's a bit trickier.

Twinchaos1 Thu 18-Dec-14 18:55:30

We have a large extended family and lots of kids. I have enjoyed the lack of stress over the last two years as we have been abroad and unable to send gifts. So we gift throughout the year when we see people. I am going to keep this up, less panic buying, more spread out cost.

IsawJimmykissingSantaClaus Thu 18-Dec-14 19:00:33

Done this. We have bought for our DC only. Usually we'll buy for the nieces/nephews but not this year as we are broke. It is so freeing grin

lightningstrikes Thu 18-Dec-14 19:08:27

My family drew names from a hat - all kids drew a name from the kids' hat and adults from the adult's hat. So everyone got one gift and everyone only had to buy one gift. If you didn't want to participate you didn't have to and it didn't affect anyone else. This worked quite well for us.

Mehitabel6 Thu 18-Dec-14 19:12:35

It makes a lot of sense to find a way to cut down - Christmas would be much nicer if we could all cut right back on the present giving.

DesperatelySeekingSanity Thu 18-Dec-14 19:32:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

YourHandInMyHand Fri 19-Dec-14 13:32:28

Exactly - even just buying for children, I have 1 child for my siblings to buy for, whereas they all have definitely large families. Even buying them all an on budget gift each this year has added up!

I am going to be clear from early on in the year that I am having a pared down xmas.

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