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to think that children should buy presents out of their own money?

(217 Posts)
Dromedary Thu 14-Mar-13 01:10:10

My DCs are 10 and 8. They receive very little pocket money, and small amounts of cash at birthdays and Christmas if they're lucky. If it is a family birthday, or Christmas, I expect them to use some of their own money to buy presents, and to really give some thought to the gift. If they had no money (but they should really hold enough back), they could make something. They sometimes also buy little presents for friends' birthdays, eg a packet of sweets. This makes the giving and the receiving really mean something. I have been really put off by seeing my, much older, nieces give no presents, or give presents which they have at best chosen at speed, with their mum doing the buying. They simply prefer to keep their money for themselves, and their mum goes along with this. At the same time, they don't bother to say thank you if you give them a present. It just feels like take take take.

StanleyLambchop Sat 16-Mar-13 11:18:13

Are you Ned Flanders, by any chance? Poor Rod & Todd <shakes head in pity for children>

imnotmymum Sat 16-Mar-13 08:41:00

with regards to birthday money my parents slip some in a crad and Grandma outs some in not that uncommon for adults to get money.
However would you OP? Save it?
Anyhow what ever the majority says and you asked the question AIBU and I can safely say yes!

Sirzy Fri 15-Mar-13 08:26:50

the OP has made it very clear she EXPECTS her young children to go out and buy her presents.

Expecting children to help around the house (to a reasonable level) is fine. Giving children money for those jobs is fine. Expecting them to use that money to buy you a present NOT FINE.

I would be pissed off if I gave a child money for their birthday which they were then expected to keep back to buy presents for other people.

Dawndonna Fri 15-Mar-13 07:33:04

Giving is nice. Making them keep back some of their Christmas and Birthday money to give to others is tight.

Yfronts Fri 15-Mar-13 00:11:22

I buy all the gifts on a budget and with lots of thought and planning as we are skint. I mostly bulk buy them and have various things for various interests/age groups.

We also send thank-yous but only ever by email or text.

My kids have little interest in money and don't get pocket money but they quite enjoy being given 10 pounds and let loose to buy Xmas gifts for their siblings. They also make gifts when inspired.

My friends kids are very money aware and know about saving/spending and have great financial sense already. I think it's a great skill but at times they do seem slightly obsessed by their piggy banks!

shewhowines Thu 14-Mar-13 23:52:51

I think the OP is having an unfair bashing.

The children volunteer to buy extra things for their friends. They obviously enjoy giving presents that they have carefully chosen and paid for out of their own money. The Op said she buys their friends proper presents. She has encouraged them to think of others. They are not being marched down the shops with their arms tied behind their backs and a shotgun to their heads.

Give her a break. I'm surprised any of you ask your kids to do any chores or anything to help others. After all they are only kids and should be able to enjoy their childhood without doing anything nice to help others even if they get obvious enjoyment from it. Shame on you for ruining their childhood.


LadyPessaryPam Thu 14-Mar-13 23:32:32

Yes you really don't know how much they really enjoyed it till they leave, don't need you any more, and can tell the truth OP.

Startail Thu 14-Mar-13 23:09:09

aconomise- pooh sticks that s such a beautiful bad spelling I;m not going to say sorry.

Startail Thu 14-Mar-13 23:07:39

My two are 12 and 15 and I'm only just suggesting presents come out of pocket money and even then only because DD2 has way more friends than DD1 so I tend to cap how many people I'll subsidise.

I stickily forbid Mothers day presents (DH ignored me and I got flowers and chocolates). I'm trying to aconomise and if the DDs buy presents for me thats simplt a book each they'll blag in the future rather than using their own money.

They are experts at avoiding using their own money DD2 has grade A in purse forgetting. DD1 has grade A in being generous and still me ending up paying her back somehow.

Anomaly Thu 14-Mar-13 22:51:06

YABU it really isn't teaching them much at that age.

I just don't expect children to buy presents, it felt really strange when DH's cousins 16 and 18 with weekend jobs bought our kids presents.

I hate this idea of measuring how people feel about you by their presents. My Mum is terrible, she seriously gets upset if someone doesn't successfully read her mind and buy a vase or other gift exactly to her taste. But she then buys me things she likes!

ArbitraryUsername Thu 14-Mar-13 22:48:40

Im loving the image of the OP sitting her 8 year old down to do an annual review of her childhood. Are you going to ask her to submit her personal development plans for the coming year too?

PeppermintPasty Thu 14-Mar-13 22:47:35

Coming back to this, things haven't improved. OP, you claim people upthread agree. I saw two people who were trying very hard to see your angle, and were supportive of some of your views. But the majority on the whole thread think you're unreasonable. (As opposed to the weirdos in a parallel world hmm at the end of the thread).

You're deluded. I'm another one who's reminded of her own mother. Gives me the shivers.

RatPants Thu 14-Mar-13 22:37:31

They're your children, they don't have an income so you cover their expenses and that's just how it is. If they were 17/18 with jobs you may have a point.

gordyslovesheep Thu 14-Mar-13 22:31:59

goodness - I just couldn;t do that to my kids - sorry - I have one who does save money and buy gifts for me and her mates but I tend to replace the money in her piggy bank or treat her to something

I buy the gifts for parties etc

they have plenty of time as adults to worry about money poor sods!

TeaMakesItAllPossible Thu 14-Mar-13 22:23:31

Are you my DS's father? I've just spent 20 minutes discussing the same topic with him.

YABU still, DS's DF - He's 10. He's very kind and generous in his actions and spirit. He's a lovely boy and spending his own money on a present does not mean he loves you more. And it doesn't mean he's selfish. As I said earlier I spend about 0.5 % of my income on presents and i'm generous. When his income goes up he will do it naturally. At the moment he has enough money, just about, to buy a couple of treats a month. There is time when he gets a job.


SoniaGluck Thu 14-Mar-13 22:01:32

For what it's worth, the other day I asked my 8 year old how she was enjoying her childhood so far. Her answer was "Really great!".

Actually, that is a pretty daft question to ask an 8 year old. I mean what sort of answer does the OP expect?

A mother is all in all to a child of that age. No child is going to risk saying the wrong thing. And what has she got to compare it with, in any case?

Sorry, OP, you sound more and more like my mother the more you post. She had very high standards for her children and we never measured up no matter how well we did.

She was wont to ask questions similar to "How are you enjoying your childhood so far?" hmm and we knew the correct answer and gave it. Anything else would have been foolish. I have rarely ever been totally honest about anything with my mother; I know what she wants me to say and I say it.

We aren't close.

SneakyNinja Thu 14-Mar-13 21:51:13

Haha MN is full of em today!
'disposable income' for an 8 yr old? >snigger<
"How is your childhood going daughter?" >giggle<
" After ALL I do for them" .....Bahahahahahaha!

Someone please make it stop grin

akaemmafrost Thu 14-Mar-13 21:38:05

My Mum used to make me do this. Not with gift money though but save up my pocket money to buy presents. It was normal to me but as an adult I realise she was/is as tight as a ducks a*se and I don't think much of her for doing it. Also when it was presents for her I couldn't buy her what I wanted, with MY own money, I had to buy what she chose.

Oh and OP increase your kids pocket money too, that's a ridiculously paltry amount.

pigletmania Thu 14-Mar-13 21:12:25

I agree snazzy i expect my dd 6 to thank people for gifts given to her, but never would i expect her to buy presents for people tha'ts my job, and never ever would i expect her to buy me a present shock she is not earning, she is a child

Snazzynewyear Thu 14-Mar-13 20:39:53

"For what it's worth, the other day I asked my 8 year old how she was enjoying her childhood so far. Her answer was "Really great!". '

She's probably worried you will cut her pocket money altogether if she says anything else. Seriously, telling us your kids think this is a great idea is not convincing given your tendency on this thread to a) simply disbelieve that anyone could hold a view that differs from yours, and b) to insist that you are right no matter what. I would have to assume that your children are well used to this and have acclimatised to the idea that their mother is always right. Well done hmm

One more thing - you have assumed that children whose parents pay for presents don't get involved in choosing the gifts, and are as rude and ungrateful as your nieces. That's a false assumption. Like most of the posters here, I wouldn't expect an 8 yo to pay for other people's presents but I would expect any 8 yo to graciously thank people for gifts. My DC know what is expected in terms of politeness - that is appropriate for 8 and 10 yos, expecting them to finance themselves is not. When do you plan to start charging them rent?

pigletmania Thu 14-Mar-13 20:21:05

Meant happy, £5 is a lot for a child really op get a grip

pigletmania Thu 14-Mar-13 20:19:50

And you stipulate how much they should spend on you op. you sound mean and grabby, you don't get it. I would be pay with a home made card for my birthday.

Hulababy Thu 14-Mar-13 20:16:27

The present money they receive, imo, does not count. That was a gift to them from others. If I was a friend or relative and thought they would have to be buying others things from it I would insist on sending a physical present only and never money. I never give money anyway as I want the child to have something physical - not it risking going in a bank account and not being seen by the child for years on end!

So £25 pocket money a year? That's 50p a week, well less.

So a £5 present to mum is 10 times their weekly income!!!

Maybe if they were being given a lot more money each week, but at less than 50p a week - imo, yabu.

lljkk Thu 14-Mar-13 20:11:20

You didn't start this thread to ask if your own choices were reasonable, you started this thread to ask if you were reasonable to declare other people's choices as BAD. That's where YABVU.

Hulababy Thu 14-Mar-13 20:06:29

I wouldn't and don't expect DD to buy presents from her pocket money and most certainly not from her own birthday money; the latter seems really off to me sorry - if I was giving a child money for their birthday I would not expect it t be spent on someone else!

DD is 10y and does get pocket money. She doesn't buy gifts with her own money but she does have a big say in what gifts we buy for her to give to others. We have a budget of sorts and she spends time selecting what feels right for each person. She will also write in cards, etc. and will often make a card.

DD is also very appreciative of things she receives though - despite being in a very privledged position and receiving many lovely things, she always appreciates gifts, always says thank you both verbally and a written thank you note.

Maybe if she was ungrateful and acting in a spoilt manner I would rethink, but she really isn't like that. Her pocket money is, for the next few years, - for herself. We will provide the extra money required for her to buy gifts.

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