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To think you don't tell kids you are buying them a big ticket item for Christmas

(37 Posts)
HopingItllBeOK Sun 04-Nov-12 22:07:14

for their sole use if they have been telling you excitedly for months that the whole family are saving up for it as a family present and now have enough money for it. Or to think that if you were planning on getting this particular gift, given that it is a big, expensive thing, you would run it by one of the adults in their household before going to the kids? Or at the very least if you must get the item in question, give it to the children early and thus paint yourself as a hero, you should get the actual thing the children have been going on and on about, not a substandard version of it which is going to need a crap-tonne of add ons to match up to what was originally saved for, and is second hand and therefore not under warranty and likely to break within a year anyway?

AIBU to be pissed off and mentally composing a refusal of the 'offer' and am I being a killjoy and looking a gift horse in the mouth?

LightTheGooTouchpaper Sun 04-Nov-12 22:10:03


YANBU but if they bought it, they've bought it.

Can you sell it? The DC won't notice if you buy the 'real' thing for Christmas.

Ithinkitsjustme Sun 04-Nov-12 22:13:28

I'd point out all the faults and then get rid of it while buying the real thing myself. It's not fair though when people seem to delibrately go out of their way to spoil something like this.

HopingItllBeOK Sun 04-Nov-12 22:14:48

It hasn't been bought yet, the children were told that this person had a friend who would be selling an old model of the thing they want, so would be getting that for Christmas. Would it be shitty of me to get in touch with them and say not to buy it, and if they do get it then it will either be sent back or sold?

mercibucket Sun 04-Nov-12 22:19:24

Nah, just do it, tell them thanks but no thanks.

mercibucket Sun 04-Nov-12 22:19:28

Nah, just do it, tell them thanks but no thanks.

PuggyMum Sun 04-Nov-12 22:25:06

Could you say you have out down a considerable deposit on said item?

LightTheGooTouchpaper Sun 04-Nov-12 22:53:37

yy just tell them you have already ordered the other version.

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 09:26:01

So the consensus is that it is a bit out of order to bypass the adults in the house and tell kids you are buying them something that you already know was meant to be a family present?

Great. Thanks. Umm, does the consensus change if I now drip feed and reveal that the gift giver is in fact the children's father who has recently reappeared? I was deliberately vague in my opening post to gauge general opinion without bogging it down with family politics. Does the fact that it is the children's father make it more acceptable or less?

CouthyMowEatingBraiiiiinz Mon 05-Nov-12 09:31:22

Neither IMO. I would just say that you have already put down a deposit for the preferred item, non refundable, and once you have paid for and given them X (your gift), they will be unlikely to use Y (Dad's gift).

I would then say "But they also want Z (another 'big ticket' item), if you hot them that, they would be over the moon.

Then he gets the option of still getting a 'big ticket item', without it being a waste when you get them your 'big ticket item'.

I'm guessing that your 'big ticket item' is the newest version of the iPad, and their Dad's 'big ticket item' is either an older version, or a different brand of Tablet.

PebblePots Mon 05-Nov-12 09:33:42

No, stick to original decision of 'no thanks' as they were valid reasons you gave. Would their father like to chip in the money he would have paid for the second hand one into buying the new one? Think you could sell the idea that it will be the latest model, all singing all dancing. Booked love a bit of high tech wizardry don't they

KnockKnockPenny Mon 05-Nov-12 09:34:11

It seemed a bit obvious to me, in your posts, that this would be an absent parent. probably because I have to deal with similar myself!

PebblePots Mon 05-Nov-12 09:34:17

Blokes not booked

Sirzy Mon 05-Nov-12 09:35:07

Tell him you have already got them a new one, but if he wants the second hand one for them at his house that's fine

PebblePots Mon 05-Nov-12 09:36:59

Or what couthy said, suggest something else they would love that dad can get them if you/he don't want to do a joint present

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 09:44:51

Cowthy, close but no cigar. It is a limited edition Xbox with kinnect we have been saving for. It's a proper bells and whistles bundle, whereas the offered one from Dad is an old (hopefully post 2007 to avoid the ring of death) xbox elite which has significantly less memory, overheating issues, is bigger and more unsightly, doesn't have wifi and would just be the console, not the kinnect and accompanying games which would need to be bought separately at not far off the cost of the bells and whistles bundle.

Pebbles, unfortunately asking him to chip in for the bundle wouldn't go down well, nor would suggesting something else. It would be taken as me demanding something I want for myself hmm

KKP I did think I was probably a bit obvious to anyone who has had a similar issue, but hopefully vague enough to everyone else to get a general overview without the relationships involved clouding the issue. Sorry you have to deal with a feckless Disney dad type as well.

BattlingFanjos Mon 05-Nov-12 11:11:35

My son's father (really stuggle to use that word) promised him a bike from Santa. Talked about it for weeks and weeks. The week before christmas came, no contact and a crappy poundshop jigsaw in a package arrived through my door. I was FUMING!! Not to mention skint when I then had to go and buy the bike! I agree with other posters, say thanks but no thanks. He should have just spoken to you and chipped in for the new one. Bizarre!

CouthyMowEatingBraiiiiinz Mon 05-Nov-12 12:56:00

Been there, done that. Tell him they won't play the older one when their new bells and whistles one with kinect and all the other bits turn up, your deposit is non refundable, it's up to him if he wants to waste his money on something that won't get played with once your one turns up.

Then <<shrug>> at him.

If he still goes ahead and buys it then he's a twat then either offer it back to him when your one turns up, for his house, or sell it!

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 13:32:09

Sending it back to have at his house isn't an option. He lives hundreds of miles away and due to several issues only has supervised daytime contact so they wouldn't get any use of it there. I suspect that his response would be that they have the bells and whistles one in the living room (where all our consoles are) and his one in their bedroom, which seems a bit pointless to me, especially as he knows we have a rule about no consoles in the bedroom to keep track of screen time.

Tbh whatever I do, it is likely to be used as an example of me being difficult or grabby in court (see above mention of issues) so I was wanting to get an outside opinion on whether it was reasonable to say "no, don't get it. If you do we will sell it and put the money towards something useful." so I know whether to worry about it being brought up or if it will just make him look a bit short sighted and daft.

YourHandInMyHand Mon 05-Nov-12 13:39:27

Who originally said they would buy it? Who has been saving up for one?

If you had said I've been saving up, that's what I'm getting the kids, and then he does that, then he is being unreasonable.

If the kids were nattering for one and he has said he will get them one, then fair enough.

I wouldn't make a big deal of it. I would tell him you are buying them an up to date bundle and leave it at that.

If he still goes and buys them an old useless console (not useless per se but useless for your family's needs) then leave it be, then a few weeks down the line point out to the kids it's silly to have 2 and that you could trade one for more games and accessories. ?

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 13:53:40

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 13:54:08

We (me, the 2DC and my partner) have all been saving for it. The idea was that we all chip in for it and it belongs to everyone. He was told this several times during phone contact, as DC1 mentioned that is what some of his birthday money was going towards, then that we nearly had enough, then we had the money and were looking for the best possible deal. So he knew that we were all buying it together as something to share.

In my more ungracious moments I do suspect that that is why he has suggested it, because it will be a family item and includes DP and not him. In rather the same way that he didn't bother to see them for years until he found out we moved in with DP, then couldn't file court papers fast enough hmm that is why I asked in a generic way if IWBU first of all though, because I am not entirely sure how much is him BU and how much is me lumping it in with all the past behaviour and assuming maliciousness where it might be me over reacting.

I probably am over thinking it tbh. I will just tell him not to buy the old model and leave it to the DC to make alternative suggestions. It's up to him what he does then.

YourHandInMyHand Mon 05-Nov-12 14:02:56

Are the kids not old enough to say no thanks dad, we already have the money to go get one but we'd love x,y or z for xmas?

It does sound like he's doing it on purpose TBH going on his previous behaviour.

Where you buying it for xmas, or just for whenever when you had all saved up enough?

HopingItllBeOK Mon 05-Nov-12 15:10:21

We are buying it as soon as we find the best deal going (currently playing a couple of places off in a price match battle) and will be set up as soon as it arrives, on the understanding that it is everyone's main Xmas present and we are just getting it early. The DC are 12 & 13, so well past the age of having to wait for Santa ;)

They are old enough that when they have had time to think about it, they will realise that the shiny new console is the better option and get to thinking of alternative suggestions. They are also old enough to be a bit mercenary and when it was sprung on them last night, their first thought was 'whoo! Now we can use what we had saved for more games!' and they were straight onto amazon to check out game prices. Given the lack of contact until recently they aren't very confident disagreeing with their dad either and all the court stuff so far has been tailored to what suits him and they are expected to fit in with that, so despite my efforts they seem to be getting the message that what dad wants, dad gets and they aren't allowed to say no. I'm counting on the mercenary nature of pre-teens to override that and help them find their voice though wink

YourHandInMyHand Mon 05-Nov-12 15:13:34

Yes at their ages they're not daft! Get the new console bought and set up. They could ask him for some games for it and like I said if he does disregard you already having one just trade it in for more games.

Even with all his bluster he may end up NOT getting them it anyway. hmm

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