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Stingy present buyers!

(47 Posts)
IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 14:16:43

The short of it is, I have a friend who always spends the total minimum on my child. I asked her for ideas of what to buy her children (she has 2) and she gave me a few suggestions, all costing around £10-12. Just received ours from her and she has spent about £3-4 at the most on mine (and I only have one child).

This has been going on at every Christmas and birthday now for years, since we both had our children. I have already stopped buying birthday gifts for her, but want to stop buying for the kids too.

I know it's the thought that's supposed to count, but I just feel resentful. She cries poverty, but I don't think they are any worse off than us, they have holidays abroad, lots of family days out, and I know their main priority is paying off their mortgage early. I can't help feeling they are just stingy with presents in order that they can afford to spend more on their own priorites.

Thing is, I'm also one of the kids 'godparents' which makes me feel obliged.

Actually, I've already decided not buying anymore, but how do I do it? Do I just stop? Or do I warn her? Don't want to fall out as like her as a friend.

leeloo1 Wed 17-Dec-14 14:20:17

Can you not ask her for suggestions? Just buy her kids a token gift each, then you won't be annoyed.

It'd be churlish of her to comment on the cost/size of your gifts, but if she does just say you're economising and perhaps better to get nothing. smile

chanie44 Wed 17-Dec-14 14:22:58

I agree tell her you are economising - make it about you, not her behaviour, if you want to retain the friendship.

Alternatively, spend the money you are happy to spend on her children.

YoullLikeItNotaLot Wed 17-Dec-14 14:27:48

Yes agree with ^^ - stop asking for suggestions and just pick up a token gift.

Although to give her the benefit of the doubt, I paid �20 for something a matter of weeks ago that is now selling for a fiver so it could be that she is a really unlucky shopper?...

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 15:00:55

I have already tried cutting present cost down, I used to spend £20 and she spent £10, every time I cut the price she does too hmm. I honestly can't be bothered to try to find things that cost £3? It costs more than that to post them to her!

And she's definitely NOT an unlucky shopper, she's the tightest person I've ever met.

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 15:29:46

Don't usually ask for suggestions either, but was trying to initiate a mutual discussion and she asked what my child would like in return. I told her (without specifying a particular item) which range of things they were into. She has completely ignored my suggestions, even though I'd told her I was definitely buy x for hers. I really want to stop buying altogether, just don't know the best way to do this.

xalyssx Wed 17-Dec-14 15:30:09

Get them one thing each from the pound shop next time.

leeloo1 Wed 17-Dec-14 15:33:47

You can get things sent to other addresses as gifts directly by Amazon (so free postage and no receipt put in) if that helps?

If you don't see her often enough to actually hand presents over then it does seem a bit pointless perhaps?

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 15:39:39

Yep, done the amazon thing too, seems really silly sending presents worth a couple of pounds when we both have family incomes well above average and well into the 'middle class' bracket!

mrsfarquhar Wed 17-Dec-14 16:20:24

If it causes you this much resentment then the gifts have to stop obviously. but you have to say something well in advance of Christmas.

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 16:37:45

Gifts have already been exchanged for this Christmas, but am thinking that is the last gift they will receive. Was thinking wouldn't send a present for the next birthday and maybe either pop a little note in a card saying not buying presents anymore with some excuse, or just not saying anything and as doubt she will buy for dd if I don't send anything for hers, and seeing what happens.

newrecruit Wed 17-Dec-14 16:42:06

I had a friend like this and it just got embarrassing. In the end we stopped buying for each other.

Maybe she would rather you did.

The Book People are your friend though. Buy a book for a couple of quid as a gesture, especially if it's one your kids have enjoyed.

Or don't. But being resentful and tit for tat (literally) is not in the spirit of things.

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 17:04:52

Yep, newrecruit done the book people too- trouble is postage costs so much these days too! You're right about the embarrassing part of it. I feel silly sending really crap things! would rather buy friends something nice I think they really like and spend a bit more. Just resent sending lovely gifts to people who send a bit of horrible cheap tat back (when I think they can afford more and as I look at all their skiing holiday pics on facebook).

bogiesaremyonlyfriend Wed 17-Dec-14 19:32:57

I think for people I planned to spend less than £10 on I really wouldn't bother. Friend of mine said she wasn't buying for my dd's this year, I still think she's fab and not at all bothered. She just said honestly that she wanted to be selfish and keep her money for herself, as it happens I don't think it is selfish as I know she doesn't have tons of money and with no dcs she doesn't get a present in return.

squiggleirl Wed 17-Dec-14 20:40:07

Are you really going to not buy a present for your godchild, because of what his mother does? That's just horrible. If you have an issue say it, but to put your godchild in the middle of this s just awful. You have an issue with her, not him.

mameulah Wed 17-Dec-14 20:49:59

I have solved this with one friend who I knew was hard up by suggesting we have a day out instead of exchanging gifts. If it is soft play you pay your own child in. Or perhaps suggest a picnic and you bring your own packed lunch to enjoy after a walk.

Another friend did this to me this year and I didn't mind one bit. Like you I give generous presents and truthfully I didn't feel that on both sides it was a fair exchange and it did annoy me.

You could make it sound up beat and 'fun' !!!! Rather than solving the problem of her being skint mean. Don't suggest it, state it as a fact.

You are right !

springbabydays Wed 17-Dec-14 20:56:02

It's ok to be stingy if you're both being stingy though right?! Some �3 are worth giving/receiving, and with kids, they enjoy the unwrapping part too.

ElfontheShelfIsWATCHINGYOUTOO Wed 17-Dec-14 21:11:07

I have to say I feel your pain, and to be honest I would not give someone a list if I was being deliberately and thoughtfully stingy fangry how rude!

Its up to you not not ask for ideas and simply choose small token gifts, I would still buy but for instance, monsoon sale, buy loads of little necklasces they are usually 2 pounds, prety hair clips...stock up for years and send.

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 21:16:03

How long do you think I should keep this farce up then? Till they're 18? And any suggestions for boys?

vdbfamily Wed 17-Dec-14 21:20:30

I find this quite difficult because I have a large extended family and we have a limit of £5 on kids presents and we only buy for one other adult max. spend £15. It then gets a bit weird when my friends buy expensive gifts for my kids and me and I feel like I then have to spend twice as much on their kids than I do on my neices and nephews and spend more on them than I spend on my parents. It is hard to get it right.Also, do you know how many other people she has to buy for? Excluding my DH and 3 children, I bought for over 50 people last year. I have to get very good at buying in sales and buying decent stuff at budget prices. I don't think you can necessarily compare like for like unless you know all the circumstances. I have reached a stage where after this Christmas I will suggest to some friends that we just get a family present and not buy for all the kids. I have 7 Godsons as well as extended family and friends.

minklundy Wed 17-Dec-14 21:27:22

The presents aren't for her but for the kids.

What did she get your dc? Did you open it for her? Before Christmas?

And how old is your dc? If she is big enough next year, give her a budget of £5 per head and let her pick for them.

IcicleTree Wed 17-Dec-14 21:27:52

As far as I know she doesn't buy for many people at all, in fact she doesn't seem to have a great number of friends, and a realtively small family, only 2 nephews.

vdbfamily Wed 17-Dec-14 21:28:31

go to Sports direct clearance accessories and you will find all sorts for boys at 80% off normal price. They have hats/scarves/gloves/football caps/gloves/facepaint/sunglasses, games/toys, clothes etc.Loads of stuff for less than a fiver. Kids clothes are good and well reduced too. Got alot of stocking fillers for my kids.

ElfontheShelfIsWATCHINGYOUTOO Wed 17-Dec-14 21:29:15

How long do you think I should keep this farce up then? depends on if you genuinely like the children and your godchild?

I understand you feeling miffed about the ££ on her dc when she is stingy, but I thought you wanted to send thats why i said dont ask choose small token gifts so the children and your god hcild know your thinking about them.

if you have no feelings for them and genuinly do not want to buy for them stop asap. as that really would be a farce.

vdbfamily Wed 17-Dec-14 21:29:17

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