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To be surprised to hear that most children don't get their parents a Christmas present?

(113 Posts)
Mitfordhons Tue 22-Dec-15 08:03:52

I have three dc's who are all in their early to mid teens, during a chat recently they told me that none of their friends buy or make their parents anything for Christmas. Mine have been doing this since they were very young. When they were very little in 5/6 they'd either make something or I'd take them to a pound shop to buy something for me & Dh and both sets of grandparent then gradually as they got older they'd use their pocket money. In November they start saving and might do some extra jobs to earn money.

They children themselves were shocked and we're all astonished that their friends will happily receive a huge pile of presents from famiky but not even think to give something in return. All three are just as excited to see how everyone likes their presents as they are to get some. I can't help feel that this is in part why some many children have such an entitled attitude.

FrizzyNoodles Tue 22-Dec-15 08:09:02

Yanbu! They should definitely be taught to get something. My dss really enjoyed picking my birthday present and card. Xmas is a bit nightmarish in the shops so we get something and he helps to wrap them and he writes the cards. So are these kids going to get to 18 and be completely overwhelmed at their first xmas shopping trip?

nooka Tue 22-Dec-15 08:09:38

I don't know if it affects attitude or not, but I do wonder if it's related to Santa becoming such a huge part of so many people's Christmases. When I was growing up Santa wasn't the big thing it seems to be now, especially with families where all or most of the presents are from Santa, as obviously you can't really give anything back.

I loved helping my children to make or buy presents, and watching them get very excited when it was the recipients turn to open their gift. They get less excited now they are teenagers mind!

I've no idea what their friends do though.

GnomeDePlume Tue 22-Dec-15 08:12:31

Not sure about surprised but I do think that it is sad. It is part of the enjoyment of Christmas to choose something for someone else.

I dont know if it makes children feel entitled more that it is something that children who dont take part in choosing presents for others are missing out.

I can still remember the enjoyment I got in buying my DF a new ruler for Christmas when I heard him say that his was all gnarled and damaged. It cost me 50p but it was all my own idea!

AutumnLeavesArePretty Tue 22-Dec-15 08:13:19

YANBU but they reap what they sew. If never taught to give as well as recieve then the parenting failed them in this aspect.

We have always done it, the joy in gifting an item is as much part of christmas as it is when they get their own gifts. We also buy for each other a decent amount to show it's not just children who receive.

ArmchairTraveller Tue 22-Dec-15 08:13:31

I think YABU t5 say 'most' as in my experience as a parent and a teacher, most children do get their parents something.
When they are younger, it tends to be with help and cash from an adult, when they are older, without support other than money if necessary and when they are earning, most buy gifts out of their own pockets. I still buy my parents presents. Christmas is about family, not just children.

TheHouseOnTheLane Tue 22-Dec-15 08:14:04

Well it's not "most children" it's your children's friends. I think most children DO get their parents a present.

Fairylea Tue 22-Dec-15 08:14:35

I agree with you.

My dd is 13 and she has always been allowed to choose some gifts from her to others. This year we have given her £20 to go out with her friend and spend on getting us something (so £10 each for dh and I). It's really important to her, she hates feeling like she hasn't got anything to give back and she enjoys choosing things.

I think enjoying the giving is as much a part of Christmas as the receiving.

LaContessaDiPlump Tue 22-Dec-15 08:14:39

I asked the DC if they were getting me anything for Christmas. They both said 'Yes' in doubtful tones (they are 4.6 and 3.5).

I won't get my hopes up grin maybe next year!

ThornyBird Tue 22-Dec-15 08:15:59

Our dc don't buy for dh and I at Christmas but they do buy for each other (there are 4 of them).

They do get us birthday presents though.

BrieAndChilli Tue 22-Dec-15 08:17:30

Mine are 5,7 and 9 and for several years we have taken them shopping to buy something for each other and myself and DH. At first it was the pound shop so they could choose anything and cost wasn't an issue but last 3 years we have given them a budget (this year it was £20 per child for all 4 presents) and taken them shopping.
They also now help choose small presents for family as well.
They also have some input into presents for their friends when they go to parties. I normally go and buy it but always ask what they think thier friend would like. Makes them think about someone else and thier likes and dislikes.
We do father xmas, but only the main present and stockings, everything else comes from whoever bought it. They do think coat doesn't matter when it comes to after xmas as he 'makes' the presents but I don't think it's the end of the world as soon they won't believe as will have plenty of time to realise the cost of things.

SeasonalVag Tue 22-Dec-15 08:22:14

I've bought myself a bracelet that my kids can give me....there's no way that my husband would even think about getting me something from them....

And my son came across a globe which was for him, in desperation I told him it was a present for daddy so that's now wrapped up as daddy's present....poor daddy!!

londonrach Tue 22-Dec-15 08:22:22

Its not 'most'. Maybe just your cycle of friends. Certainly not in my family or cycle of friends. In fact its the first time ive heard that children dont buy presents and i see 18 patients a day who are telling me about their xmas at the moment. You be amazed what presents children do buy for their parents!

Preciousxbane Tue 22-Dec-15 08:26:20

DS has given us small gifts that he has got using his good behaviour/work tickets at school. They give them a raffle ticket for things of note at school and then open a christmas shop where they can be swopped for small gifts. I had a little silver coloured metal and bead christmas tree table decoration one year.

HumphreyCobblers Tue 22-Dec-15 08:26:26

Our PTFA do a piggybank shopping event, each present costs £2 and comes wrapped and labelled from school. They key thing is that children are encouraged to use their pocket money (if they get it). It means that even little ones can have the experience of choosing a present for their parents/grandparents. I think it is a brilliant event, my kids love doing it.

TartanBirdFeeder Tue 22-Dec-15 08:28:10

Mine always get/make me something. DH doesn't see the point as he never got anything for his parents but our DCs want to - DS announced that he was taking DD shopping the other day on their own, they usually do this and I haven't peeked in the bag that is under her bed

charlestonchaplin Tue 22-Dec-15 08:29:25

If a 13 year old needs to be given money to buy their parents gifts, I think that's missing the point of gift-giving to be honest. Where is the sacrifice and thoughtfulness in that? Surely by 13 children should be capable of quietly saving up a small amount of money or making something without parental intervention?

Titsalinabumsquash Tue 22-Dec-15 08:30:23

We have one of those secret present rooms at school so we all donate a few token presents and a sheet of wrapping paper and it goes into a big pot that the children then chose something from and wrap it for their parents, no one misses out and they combine it with the Christmas party so it's all quite jolly and festive, it's not competitive either with one parent getting the latest silk scarf and perfume and another getting a coaster all the gifts are little things like gloves, scarves, ties, cufflinks or pretty note pad sets or nice candles or nail varnish sets.
It's the first year my children have been at the school and they were so pleased with themselves to come out clutching a beautifully wrapped gift for me and DP each that we hadn't had a hand in buying.

MincePiesTasteBetterHot Tue 22-Dec-15 08:32:36

My children are a bit too young to use their own money yet. I think from around secondary school age, I will start encouraging them to use their pocket money - though I'll probably still give them a little extra, or match what they have saved.

This year I gave them £15 to choose something for each other, and free reign to choose something for DH (luckily they didn't go mad!), and DH has also "secretly" taken them shopping to choose something for me.

I think they are almost as excited about giving the presents they have chosen as opening their own presents. DD1 has whispered to me about five times that she can't wait to see what DD2 says when she opens her present from her.

I do think it's sad to miss out on that part of Christmas, but I wouldn't have thought it was actually that common, is it? I always bought presents for my family as a child, and so did all my school-friends.

atticusclaw2 Tue 22-Dec-15 08:33:38

Mine don't get pocket money and as a result every year we get something of theirs wrapped up. Last year I got a plastic goat and a storm trooper from DS2 and a lego model of myself from DS1.

MrsJayy Tue 22-Dec-15 08:38:38

Yes we have always took them to get presents for us and Gp its just a nice thing to do and it shows Christmas is not just about them imo.

harryhausen Tue 22-Dec-15 08:38:46

Mine are younger 11 and 8 and don't really get regular pocket money. However, they do always make me something from Scouts/cubs etc (last year I had a wooden birdhouse!). They both 'buy' a gift for each other (that they choose that I pay for) and are always really excited to give it.

Giving gifts is the best part of Christmas. I think if they feel that early then it'll make Christmas more enjoyable for years to come!

SheGotAllDaMoves Tue 22-Dec-15 08:40:13

My DC buy for us, their grandmother and each other.

Alicewasinwonderland Tue 22-Dec-15 08:41:15

Only when they are old enough not to believe in Santa anymore fsmile.

Whilst they are still young, and gullible and still believe in the magic of Christmas star, we start by presents for birthdays.

In my home, ALL the presents come from Father Christmas, so little hands are not involved in present giving just yet.

StarlingMurmuration Tue 22-Dec-15 08:44:42

DS is only 13 months, but DP and I both buy a present for the other parent "from" the baby. I imagine we'll keep doing this until he's old enough to make or choose something himself. And DS also "buys" something for his grandparents. That's what happened in our family when I was growing up, and I think it's a nice tradition. We're reasonably well off though, it might be different if we were short of money, though DS could still make something when he's a bit bigger.

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