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AIBU to expect in-laws to buy age appropriate gifts for my 2 year old?

(34 Posts)
llmmhh Thu 14-Jul-11 09:54:16

My daughter has just had her 2nd birthday and my in-laws bought several gifts all of which I have had to confiscate because the are inappropriate.

The worst example is a tea set (which my daughter loved for the few hours I let her play with it) which is made from porcelain and has some very small parts. According to the label it is not suitable for children under 8 years! After a few hours of playing many of the pieces are chipped or completely broken and very sharp.

I am really cross that I have had to confiscate all of the gifts they bought because none of them were suitable. The same thing happened last year when she bought a train suitable for a 3 year old for DD 1st birthday.

I have asked my DH to talk to his mum about it but he is very reluctant as he does not have that kind of relationship with her.

Any advice on how I should handle this?

SinicalSal Thu 14-Jul-11 09:56:08

Smile and say Oh thank you, I will put it up until she's old enough for it.

BagofHolly Thu 14-Jul-11 09:56:57

Thank them, put them in a cupboard and wait till they're old enough to enjoy them.

Debs75 Thu 14-Jul-11 09:58:28

You could just tell them that dd has broken the gifts and that they were a little old for her.
How about giving them a list of age appropriate toys which you know dd will like. as long as they are not too expensive they shouldn't complain, especially as you can point out the value of dd actually being able to play with them.

If that seem too confrontational ask for cash towards a large play item or ask for clothes, easily reyurnabl;e if they are the wrong size

exoticfruits Thu 14-Jul-11 09:58:36

No problem -say to DD that it will be lovely when older and put in a cupboard-she will have other presents so isn't going to mind.

kreecherlivesupstairs Thu 14-Jul-11 09:58:44

Good advice given so far. I am at the opposite end of this. My DD is 10. For her last birthday, one aunt sent her a Peppa pig colouring in set, the other sent a rabbit that plays a lullaby.
The goodwill place was a bit fuller that weekend.

Scholes34 Thu 14-Jul-11 09:58:51

The complete opposite to this is the situation I've found myself in of having to do everyone's shopping for them, because they all consider that I know best what my DCs would like and what's appropriate. I think YANBU, but be careful how you go about handling this. You could initially try making some suggestions for gifts.

SequinsAndSparkles Thu 14-Jul-11 09:59:14

Tbh, I have never been overly concerned with those kind of 3+ guidelines. I think that as long as you are supervising them, there is usually no problem. My DD is 2.6 and for her 2nd birthday she got a few toys that were 3+, and we've had no problems.

I'm not sure how you should broach this though, because it does seem like they are buying nice gifts with good intentions. I suppose you could try and say it casually e.g 'Oh we are having to be really careful with what toys DD has at the moment, anything with small parts is a pain, she just trys to put everything in her mouth!'

Something along those lines maybe?

sausagesandmarmelade Thu 14-Jul-11 09:59:32

I think you have to be quite sensitive re this...

They meant well...and thought that what they chose would be appreciated.

I would send a very polite thank you....and keep the gift aside until it is appropriate for your child to use.

Blurry29 Thu 14-Jul-11 10:01:21

Could you give them a list of ideas in future that are appropriate without sounding demanding? My FiL has no clue bless him about what is age appropriate for his GC so we let him know what DS is into around birthdays and xmas and he gets something from what we have asked. We don't demand but just say oh DS is into Power rangers at the mo etc.... we then leave it to him to chose a gift from what he can afford.

We also do the same for him, around birthdays and xmas we ask him what he is into at the time, we don't see him often so wouldn't know without asking, he doesn't demand but does tell us what he likes etc.......

They just may not be aware of what they are doing and you don't want to come across as selfish and ungreatful


GwendolineMaryLacey Thu 14-Jul-11 10:02:31

YABU. You just have to take responsibility and use a little common sense. I was given a lovely little porcelain tea set for DD when she was younger. I put it away and, now she's 3.5 and a bit more careful, I might think about getting it out. Presents don't have to be used immediately.

Just think a little. Look at the item, decide whether it's ok for your child at the moment. If so, hand it over. The age guidelines are just that, they're not written in blood.

Rillyrillygoodlooking Thu 14-Jul-11 10:04:25

DS got a wooden train set from the ILs on his first birthday. We saved it until he was old enough.
I agree that a porcelain tea set is a little off the mark for a two year old, but I also agree that often things that say 3+ could be suitable for a 2+, depending on how "grown up" the child is.
Just save them for later...

ragged Thu 14-Jul-11 10:07:46

yanbu, and I know what you mean. My mother used to buy such things for her DGC and say "We'll just put this collectible away until you're bigger" WHAT A LOAD OF PANTS to buy a terrific & fun looking but fragile toy for a toddler. Of course eventually somebody capitulated to the child's constant whinging asking for it, got fragile toy down for a "brief" spell and it was soon broken. Anyway, how many 8yos want a fragile toy, tell the truth?? DD is 9yo & would probably soon chip that porcelin set, too.

I don't know what you can do about it, though; my mother wouldn't listen, either (sigh).

EricNorthmansMistressOfPotions Thu 14-Jul-11 10:09:12

Say thanks and put the gifts away til she's older.

IWantAnotherBaby Thu 14-Jul-11 10:11:35

I'm a bit embarrassed to say we have an amazon wish list running all the time for each child. All the internet-savvy members of the family know about it, and that anything bought from there is safe, but it also gives people a good idea what the children are into at the moment (eg DS currently has the entire Lego Ninjago range on his wish list!).

When MIL has bought completely inappropriate things in the past (eg she bought a baby walker for DS (PFB); I was never going to allow a child of mine in one!), we politely explained the problem. She soon realised that our tastes and ideas about what was suitable were different, and got into the habit of either providing the receipt when she bought something, or giving me the cash to buy something on her behalf.

Failing that, we re-gift (and DCs get to choose a substitute gift to the approximate value), or pass things on to charity shops/ ebay. It avoids awkwardness, appearing ungrateful etc.

Ormirian Thu 14-Jul-11 10:11:43

Put them away and wait till she's older. She'll appreciate them then

I certainly don't see why you are cross about it. It's annoying but that is all. It sounds to me as if they are trying to give her the sort of toy they remember liking when they were little and are guilty of nothing more than over-enthusiasm and age-overestimation! wink

You could perhaps say something like ' DD loved your tea set! Unfortunately she was a bit rough for it - she's only 2 after all - so I've put it away for later'. To give them a hint. or just let it go.

llmmhh Thu 14-Jul-11 10:13:49

Fair enough - thanks for the ideas. I think next time I'll be more prepared to say something to my daughter like "oh that will be nice to play with when you're a bit older" and then hide it away for a later date.


nadia77 Thu 14-Jul-11 10:17:24

appreciate the thought and she will always grow to the toys lets just say you'll always have new toys for her when she's bored

diddl Thu 14-Jul-11 10:19:48

Well it doesn´t sound that bad-a teaset for a 2yr old!

It maybe just didn´t occur to them to look at labels.

I had a porcelain teaset & it´s something I´d love to buy a GC so I´d probably buy it too soon.

I think to say-oh that´s lovely but when she´s a bit older-as already suggested.

Or for next bday/Christmas-give suggestions.

MoChan Thu 14-Jul-11 10:20:52

We have Amazon wish lists running too - especially useful now that they have the 'universal' wish list thing you can do. I wouldn't ever force it on anyone (not least because it's nice to have some surprises) but it's great for when grandparents/uncles and aunts say "what shall we get for X".

Of course, if they didn't ask, I wouldn't go offering suggestions as it would make me feel like an ingrate. I think in the OP's circumstances, I would probably say "how lovely, we'd better put it aside for a couple of years until xx can play with it safely". Just so they are not offended if they don't see it being played with.

yearningforthesun Thu 14-Jul-11 10:28:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HPonEverything Thu 14-Jul-11 10:31:15

Iwantanotherbaby "I'm a bit embarrassed to say we have an amazon wish list running all the time for each child. All the internet-savvy members of the family know about it, and that anything bought from there is safe, but it also gives people a good idea what the children are into at the moment"

I don't think there's anything embarrassing about that - actually think it's a GREAT idea and I will implement it myself when the time comes - do they need their own accounts too?

saladsandwich Thu 14-Jul-11 10:31:54

my ex-inlaws buy ds strange stuff, they also keep the gifts at their house so i can't even put them away till he's older. he is 2 and half and he is grown up in the sense he doesn't put things in his mouth but he is alittle behind development wise and they bought him a robosapien he absolutley freaked out and had a massive meltdown, i just smile and go ooooo usually but i have told them not to buy him anything with guns or sharp parts and they haven't done they just buy daft expensive stuff but they mean well xx

MorelliOrRanger Thu 14-Jul-11 10:32:59

Quite surprised you gave your DD the tea set to play with if you thought it was too old for her confused

YANBU to hope that people buy age appropriate gifts for your DC, if they aren't put them away for a while. Children get so much that they aren't going to miss a few things are they?

RMutt Thu 14-Jul-11 10:35:42

Iwant 'I'm a bit embarrassed to say we have an amazon wish list running all the time for each child.' Omg what a brilliant idea! Don't be embarrassed!!

I am also the poor soul who has to do everyone else's Christmas and birthday shopping for the dc from the family. With 3 dc it gets pretty mindblowing. I'm off to create Amazon wish lists now smile If it makes the onslaught of birthdays and Christmas bearable I'll be forever grateful.

Years ago when dd was around 2 mil went on holiday to Italy and brought dd back a very delicate Venetian mask for her you doconfused Blimey even I was scared to touch it let alone dd. It's lovely but she couldn't go near the thing for years. We hung it high on the wall in her room. And as 2 yr olds love dressing up...she was itching to get it sad Bonkers.

But grandmas do mean well and I think we all forget over time the limitations of agegroups and toys when you're not always in the thick of it.

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