Advanced search tell people what I want for Xmas

(18 Posts)
justwondering72 Sun 08-Dec-13 20:40:18

DH and I are not seeing eye to eye on this at all!

In my family, we generally tell each other what we'd like for Xmas. or we just give money so the person can choose their own gift. this year my parents have transferred some money to our account so that we can buy what we like for ourselves and get presents for the dc. or they would ask for very specific ideas - details of dvds, music, book list etc and shop from that. My sister and I will get each other Amazon vouchers for similar value, or she might send me a link to a specific perfume that she wants.Easy peasy, job done.

DH's side are totally different. they never ask what we might like. so every year I end up with some clothes that don't fit, and that I probably wouldn't wear anyway and which just end up going to charity (we live overseas so can't return or exchange them) plus some old lady toiletries. DH also gets clothes, naff toiletries, random stuff that rarely gets used. it drives me mad, it's such a waste of money when no-one of us have much to spare.

this year we aren't getting anything for each other, too skint. but we thought we'd get the dc to buy each of us a present with some help from the other parent. I told DH I'd really like some new lipstick and bath oil, and specified the colour / brand/ perfume. he says I'm being a control freak and should be happy with whatever the dcs choose for me.

so aibu to ask for what I want for Xmas?

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 08-Dec-13 20:43:53

YANBU. I hate the idea of anyone wasting their money so point them in the general direction of a few choices, any of which I'd be happy with. It's surprise enough not knowing which one they are going to choose. Having said that, I don't mind genuine surprises as long as they're thoughtful.

LouiseAderyn Sun 08-Dec-13 21:01:26

I don't think either of you ABU-you just come from families who do things differently and so your way feels 'right' to you and his does to him.

Marylou62 Sun 08-Dec-13 21:12:02

Ha! This made me laugh!! For about 10 years now I have been buying my own xmas presents from DH to me.(Married for 25 years). He then wraps them with DCs.(To preserve the Santa thing!!) I usually do get a present he has chosen as well! Am older so memory not so good. One year I completely forgot what I had bought myself so had lovely surprizes!!!

AureliaDarling Sun 08-Dec-13 21:12:14

I would hate that dh spent precious cash on something I hated. I - and he - have an Amazon wishlist to avoid this. Saying that - every year he bloody buys me an item of jewellery. Nothing expensive - I think he is fixated that that wives expect it. I rarely wear any so it annoys me.

Sirzy Sun 08-Dec-13 21:14:56

Nothing wrong with giving people an idea of something you would like. But it would be wrong to expect them to get what you want.

When it comes to young children picking presents surely part of the fun for them is deciding what they think Mum and Dad would like rather than getting what they have beentold to?

Thegreatunslept Sun 08-Dec-13 21:22:59

First christmas dp and I were together he got me a present I didn't like and wouldn't use!
So for the last 3 years for birthdays and christmas I have a list of things I would like (I usually email them to him) and I haven't had a rubbish present since.
My dm, dsis and I all go shopping together before christmas and buy each other clothes/shoes/perfume/jewellery.

FryOneFatManic Sun 08-Dec-13 21:32:17

DP and I are not well off, so we like to make the best of the money we can afford by giving suggestions to each other for presents. That way we get something we want or need and we are not wasting money on something the other person (or DCs) don't want/can't use.

I personally think your DP is being daft. You're not being a control freak, you're like me, not wanting to waste money you haven't got.

I get that his family is different but if money is tight it shouldn't be wasted it on presents people don't want or can't use.

MrsGarlic Sun 08-Dec-13 21:45:49

We have very little money at the moment and neither of us can bear the thought of wasting any on something the other partner won't like, so we do tell each other what, if anything, we want. This year I've just gone ahead and bought myself some books and given them to him to wrap for me.

In past years when we've had more free cash (i.e. not at the end of my maternity leave living off savings 'cos one income isn't enough) it's not been so much of an issue to buy surprises.

So I don't think YABU.

Now, my MIL tends to ask what we want, we tell her, then she goes and buys completely different things... of course we are grateful to be given anything, but it does make me wonder why she bloomin' well asks!

Mim78 Sun 08-Dec-13 23:28:13

I agree it's just families doing things differently. I think surprises are nice, but you do have to take the time to think of something the person will like - mostly people can do this reasonably well if some thought it put into it.

However, I agree that it's not really a good idea to waste money.

I do tend to tell DH what I would like alot of the time as he has got some rubbish in the past. However, last year I got a really brilliant surprise - nothing something flashy or expensive but something useful and "me" that I'd never have though of.

So am on the fence...

Kundry Mon 09-Dec-13 00:59:19

I sympathize. My DH and I are currently having a major bust up over our different present buying styles and are barely speaking to each other sad.

My DH sounds more like yours, every single family member gets something, preferably from a list but at least a box of chocolates. Lots of low budget items are bought. Most people will know what they are getting.

My family is a bit more like your DHs, although possibly with fewer numbers. Presents are bought for family you are v close to and young children, but aunts, uncles, in-laws get dropped by mutual agreement. Lists are made but they are to be seen as starting points for inspiration. A few, higher budget items are bought but for fewer people. You will have an idea what some of the presents are but there will be a degree of surprise.

DH's system is utterly incomprehensible to me and it appears mine is to him. I think the surprise is a way of demonstrating the thought and love you have put into the choice of gift and picking from a list removes the joy and reduces present giving to essentially swapping money. However he thinks his systems shows the value in everyone and avoids people being disappointed.

Can you find a middle way? For your DCs it can be fun that their choices are so different to yours but it can also help them to have clear direction. Next year, even though his family don't ask, can you spread word around his family about what the DCs are in to? Can you agree that you have one list and one list-inspired present each?

If you find a solution, please let me know confused

reelingaroundthechristmastree Mon 09-Dec-13 01:06:15

MaryLou62 I could have written that post! grin

Monty27 Mon 09-Dec-13 01:11:31

I need lipstick (bright red of course) and jumpers, so if anyone asks me what I want, that'll be my answer.

It's what I need and want, I can't afford them myself I'm so busy spending my cash on what I think others might need or want smile

Oh Gosh austerity confused


Tapiocapearl Mon 09-Dec-13 03:19:58

I have a list too - red PJ's and everyday underwear. Both basic essentials. If skint there is less room for surprises as any lists consist of things you really really need or small unaffordable items you particularly want. Things that are totally out if reach normally.

Tell your DH he doesn't have to buy the items but you will buy them for yourself in the xmas sale anyway as that's what you would like more then anything.

Suggest a secret Santa to his family for next year with amazon wish list. Explain to them it would be really helpful as you are so skint. Would enable you to get bigger items you need.

justwondering72 Mon 09-Dec-13 05:26:38

I think it's the waste of money that irks me most.DH, in pre kids, more cash rich days, has bought me some really expensive presents which were completely not what I wanted and have never been used or worn. and nowadays, I don't ever treat myself so Xmas, for me, is a time to ask for that little things I can't afford day to day.

for dcs my mil does ask for a list of ideas. sometimes she hits it spot on, other years not so much. for adults,I think it is her way of trying to save money. if she doesn't have a list for adults that includes specific books, clothes, etc she can go to the cheap shops. she is a generous person, but years of penny watching have left her with a great reluctance to go to boots if she can get a cheaper version at b&m bargains! she'd always go for a bunch of cheap stuff rather than one more expensive thing. and like a lot of people her age she is very private about money, she would not like us to know how much she did our didn't spend I think, which you generally do if you ask for something specific. she doesn't use Amazon at all afaik.

I think we are all trying to save money but in different ways! pil have the attitude that one should be grateful for what one gets whether or not it's what you like or want -they both had very poor childhoods. my family, not so much, but certainly a desire not to waste money on cheap rubbish and to get presents that are wanted.

it's not a biggy, I just brace myself every year when we open mils gift! actually, the sending of thank you cards is where we really part company...:-)

justwondering72 Mon 09-Dec-13 06:00:58

Actually I think it's partly down to the fact that my mil does not do luxury! She would never buy a really good lipstick and a small bottle of really nice bath oil when, for the same money, she can get two cheap tops from primary, a sparkly (itchy) scarf and hat set, a floral collection soap set, a yearbook thing with countryside scenes, a bargain books cookbook and a box of fruit jellies for the same money! She'd always go for quantity over quality.

DH, to his credit, gets it really right with the surprises from time to time. He got me a refurbished iPod last year, which I do love and use all the time. It almost makes up for the electric piano (wtf!) and the £80 pjyamas that never fitted and couldn't be returned, that he has surprised me with in previous years!

ZillionChocolate Mon 09-Dec-13 07:17:52

Too close to Christmas now, but for next year is there any scope for telling MIL the things you'd love but can't get where you are? And maybe suggest a one gift limit?

flaparoo Mon 09-Dec-13 09:14:43

I've bought myself a present - it's a percy pig snow globe blush I saw it the other day and thought bugger it as no fecker would buy it for me as too childish/not a proper present etc. ILS and my family are not buying each other presents this year as we normally buy each other amazon vouchers etc and thought there was no point. Just buy for kids

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