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To be fed up with the family present buying fuss

(32 Posts)
LovelyBath Tue 22-Dec-15 14:52:42

Just that really. I'm still not used to it; my family are pretty laid back really and if we get each other anything it's a nice token. DH's on the other hand is another matter. Cousins, aunts and uncles, cousins partners etc (and there are many) all have presents sent and for close family, it all needs to be asked about to make sure you are sending them what they want etc, which I think is a shame, where's the fun in that? It gets so stressful. Yesterday we had the usual call from MIL as they are driving to vast family with a car of presents and have we ours ready to take, then today another call as sending a box special delivery to other vast family and have we ours ready etc. then lots of texts from more close family asking what we all want and careful deliberations from DH over a certain book or something...I'm leaving him to it (and feeling guilty) Is this normal? I'm Scottish and think it might be more about the New Year there as this is all a bit overwhelming to me...but it's been going on for years and it's still just as stressful

Dipankrispaneven Tue 22-Dec-15 14:54:58

That sounds like my idea of hell. We work on the basis that I buy for my family, DH buys for his, and unsurprisingly I think you're absolutely right to do the same.

TheHouseOnTheLane Tue 22-Dec-15 14:56:31

YANBU. I hear on MN about "I got a crap gift" and am outraged. I think it's beyond tacky to expect "quality" gifts from extended family once you're an adult.

I LOVE getting candles and a bit of soap or some socks if people are kind enough to think of me.

LovelyBath Tue 22-Dec-15 15:00:09

I feel a bit less guilty now :-) I've sent my boring random bits and cards off a few weeks ago to Scotland and sitting back while they all fuss around. (well still feeling a bit guilty after saying about sending cards earlier then not passing on message to DH about the box going etc but he's got enough what with the immediate family stuff. I'm still awaiting further texts this evening when SIL has cunningly found out what the other family want etc etc

TheSnowFairy Tue 22-Dec-15 15:01:47

YANBU, I hate being given a shopping list of gifts to buy.

LovelyBath Tue 22-Dec-15 15:02:21

I can kind of understand it for children but for adults seems a bit self indulgent for me. I've 'asked' for some bits from Lush for myself to keep it easy and make the point that we don't need big 'things' then was asked, but don't I want some clothes or something to go with it? No, I really don't. Probably seem Scottish and stingy, but it would be easier to pick something up I like in the sales...

LovelyBath Tue 22-Dec-15 15:04:36

Haha I just remembered I sometimes get these mournful comments from DH about how in the rest of his family the wives usually do all the present buying and cards etc and wouldn't that be lovely to relax a bit! And I think, well you do all make a fuss of it!

JellyBabiesSaveLives Tue 22-Dec-15 15:05:08

Fluffy socks for everyone next year. You can always use a pair of socks.

thelaundryfairy Tue 22-Dec-15 15:05:12

In my extended family and my husband´s only the children receive gifts from the aunts and uncles. Personally, I really enjoy choosing gifts for the children and then watching them open them (the best gifts being the ones that distract the children for long periods and don´t require adults to build!) It works in our families, but, of course, everyone is different.

JellyBabiesSaveLives Tue 22-Dec-15 15:06:50

Hah - if my dh made that kind of comment about the wives doing the present-buying I'd be agreeing with "oh yes! I want a wife, too!"

LovelyBath Tue 22-Dec-15 15:11:36

Yes, i do that with my own family (just send presents to the children) everyone else just gets cards

Caboodle Wed 23-Dec-15 18:53:10

Only time adults (other than DH and DM) get presents here is if I see something (smallish) I know they will love. I would feel awkward sending a list of things I want.

IHeartKingThistle Wed 23-Dec-15 19:11:41

Every year I am badgered by DH'S family for a list. It has to be an Amazon wishlist. I hate doing it! This year I put something on it and then had to endure 3 separate phone calls from MIL where she explained why she didn't think I should have it and what she had decided I should have instead. It's the least Christmassy thing ever.

We do do presents for adults in my family but we take pride in finding unusual things the others will love. Takes longer but I prefer our way!

EponasWildDaughter Wed 23-Dec-15 19:12:08

''I'm leaving him to it (and feeling guilty)''

Don't OP. Don't feel guilty. If my family had a full on routine on something, like this present thing, or anything else, i wouldn't expect my DH to suddenly take up the reins for the pair of us and deal with it.

In a kindly way, it's his family, let him do it. OR let him find a nice way explain to them that you two would rather be left out of this mad, stressful 'presents for all' fest.

RaspberryOverloadingOnTurkey Wed 23-Dec-15 19:45:49

If my DP was expecting me to do the present buying/card writing for his family, he'd be told "in your dreams, mate".

I don't do wife work. Which might explain why his family often got crap gifts, etc, and frequently no cards because he doesn't do cards, either for xmas or birthdays.

Chopz Wed 23-Dec-15 19:49:44

This his is why we do secret Santa in our family. The relief is huge.

ShatnersBassoon Wed 23-Dec-15 19:52:00

God, YANBU. My family get very pissed off with me because I don't start sending out my wish list or requesting one from others in October, and won't actually do it at any point. It's like a big swap shop for them.

This year, my dad accused me of being secretive about what I'd like for Christmas fgrin fgrin

myotherusernameisbetter Wed 23-Dec-15 19:55:20

Scottish here too. We buy for the kids in the family (what we want, not to an agreed list grin ) adults get cards apart from Mum of course who always gets gifts being the matriarch and having a poor childhood - she deserves it. The rest of us couldn't really care less, we buy our partners gifts but no other adults. It's all about the kids and the booze food etc.

shebird Wed 23-Dec-15 20:08:48

Don't feel guilty OP the whole thing is bonkers. What's the point of everyone running about doing each others shopping lists. It's just a mad shopping frenzy we all get sucked into. Christmas is about children and family being together.

This year we had agreed with DHs family to just buy for DCs only, which was fab until last weekend when MIL proclaimed she had bought us presents angry

LovelyBath Thu 24-Dec-15 09:50:52

Ok so hopefully it's over now. It is all bonkers, they do adult stockings as well which is actually quite fun as you can out some mad stuff in and it doesn't matter. Maybe I'll suggest we just stick to that in future! :-) (Best go, DH is panicking we haven't got something to go with his DSis book and it 'isn't enough' or something

DisappointedOne Thu 24-Dec-15 09:56:31

We don't buy for anyone. Much simpler. grin

LassWiTheDelicateAir Thu 24-Dec-15 10:22:19

Your partner's family sound like my idea of hell. I don't understand this phenomenon at all. I buy presents for my brother, sil and nephew as they are my family. I have no idea what my husband does for his lot, if anything.

5Hearts Thu 24-Dec-15 10:47:12

Sounds awful!
If they're all happy to do this then...let your DH get on with it. You have nothing to feel guilty about.
I wish I had given myself this advice at the start of our marriage (and DH's family are not that OTT but have their own 'issues' around gift-giving). Spent the last couple of years slowly passing the reigns back to DH and he can do the whole lot next year.
Perfect Christmas for me would be to spend the time and effort actually enjoying the company of those we care about at Christmas and pretty much stop this ridiculous gift giving farce.

2ndSopranosRule Thu 24-Dec-15 10:51:48

See, I wish my inlaws would actually give some thought into what they buy us. MIL just presents us all with piles of absolute crap. Most of the stuff she buys the dc gets broken immediately. Dh really doesn't need 12 pairs of new socks (which are also crap and shed) every year. Dd1 will enjoy the boxes of terrible costume jewellery I get each year.

MIL always does a nice hamper and buys us a calendar, both of which we truly appreciate. That's all she needs to do!

Preciousxbane Thu 24-Dec-15 11:00:30

DH family do this and ask what each other want but it is even weirder that they then swap cheques. What is the bloody point as they are usually for exactly the same amount. MIL then gives us each a really small token gift I had a key ring that had a small torch and safety alarm on it last year.

I am very lucky in that I receive gift vouchers as there was a total hoo ha the year DH and I married as I didn't change my name to his and everyone wrote a cheque with my name assumed as being changed. I would imagine FIL who is very traditional would have too much bile rising to write my actual name.

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