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To not want to spend fortunes on extended family at Christmas?

(84 Posts)
KH369 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:14:17

First of all, I'll get it out the way, I'll not a Christmas lover so maybe that sways my view. But DH family actually expect us to spend £25-£30 per child for nieces/nephews! I think that's absolutely ridiculous, in my opinion its the parents & grandparents that push he boat out not aunties and uncles. I ignored the rule last year which (according to DH) resulted in our children receiving no birthday presents through the year - yes this is true but whether of not its related to my lack of xmas expense I don't know.
AIBU to think I should save the big bucks for my own children's presents considering we don't always having extra savings to fall back on at Christmas, or do I need to just get a grip and spend whats expected of me so that my children will get birthday presents next year?

Sayyouwill Mon 09-Oct-17 08:15:44


Your extended family sound incredibly petty

Calvinlookingforhobbs Mon 09-Oct-17 08:16:41

Can you suggest a secret Santa?

Shoxfordian Mon 09-Oct-17 08:17:13

I don't think it's reasonable for people to expect you to spend a certain amount per child! Such entitled behaviour.

AdalindSchade Mon 09-Oct-17 08:18:17

Yanbu! And your kids haven’t lost out by not having gifts from these petty, mercenary twats.

rollerbladersrule Mon 09-Oct-17 08:18:49

YANBU. It isn't about how much money you spend. In my family the amounts we can all spend are hugely different. The grandparents tend to 'spoil' the children, one aunt spends around £20 per child for christmas but they are in the best financial situation, another aunt spends around £10, and I spend around £10 unless I can find bargains through the year as I cannot afford £20 per child for 6 nieces/nephews!

Witsender Mon 09-Oct-17 08:20:54

It depends on the norm really, and how many we are talking about? It is a good idea on the whole to have a generic agreed spend, we do in our family and it works well. £30 isn't a 'pushing the boat out' amount in our family, grandparents tend to do £50-£75.

Witsender Mon 09-Oct-17 08:21:47

But all family members are relatively comfortable, depends on your circumstances

KH369 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:22:26

Secret santa is a good idea in theory but I know they wouldn't go for it as i would mean there children would get less. This is what they are like - their sons birhday last month, I had card and present ready but circumstances meant that i forgot to go round on the day (i had a family member in hospital) I explained all and said they can pick up anytime, they still haven't and as such my eldest didn't even get a card or even text message whose birthday is 3 weeks later. DH says because they don't have their sons present (through their own laziness i think!) then they won even register our children's birthday's

happilyeverafta Mon 09-Oct-17 08:23:10

You are definitely NOT BU!

I hate the expectation of spending loads of money on Christmas pressies. Whilst I like to ‘spoil’ relatives I’d rather spend time with them as a family and making memories not £20/30 on a plastic toy that they may only play with once.

My in laws always demand certain pressies & if they don’t get ‘what they expect’ it’s held against us. hmmluckily my DH doesn’t care what they think and doesn’t play up to their ridiculous demands.

LakieLady Mon 09-Oct-17 08:24:37

YANBU. Not everyone's circumstances are the same, and what may be easily affordable for one family might be very hard for another to manage.

What happened to "it's the thought that counts"?

happilyeverafta Mon 09-Oct-17 08:25:44

Oh & yes we also get the no present ‘punishment’ if what they receive isn’t what they want. Last Christmas we actually spent time looking for very thoughtful gifts that we knew they’d all really like.

We got a bag of haribos each.

AdalindSchade Mon 09-Oct-17 08:26:24

Why should the pick up their son’s present though? You sound a bit petty there. Why not post it if you can’t get over there?

Sparkletastic Mon 09-Oct-17 08:27:07

Suggest you stop buying for each other (adults and children). Sounds horribly petty so duck out of it altogether. Are you close as a family? If so replace it with Christmas outing together (meal or panto or whatever) but if not use it as another way to create distance.

elQuintoConyo Mon 09-Oct-17 08:27:59

Give them £10 in a Christmas card.

Or be up front "sorry, but you cannot dictate how much someone spends on your children. If they (the dc) don't like what we (WE - include your DH in this) bought, then they can donate it or pass it on."

Or better yet, your DH should be saying this.

I had words with my DH about his sister (similar circumstances) and we have agreed to spend no more than €10 in Tiger. Stand firm!

RJnomore1 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:28:33

How many nieces and nephews are there? Are they all from one family or does dh have more siblings? How many dc do you have? Do you also have siblings with children?

They sound petty not you.

FormerlyFrikadela01 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:29:05

Yanbu. I hate this idea of expectation to x amount of spending and it sounds like your family are pretty unreasonable in this respect.
I spend about £30 on my nieces and nephew (5 altogether) because I want to. Not because it's expected. Last year it was a little less. My sister's spend more or less depending on various things. But we all get it and are pretty reasonable about it all.

Anymajordude Mon 09-Oct-17 08:30:29

I stopped trying years ago. I just can't afford it. I really don't care if aunties and uncles don't give my DC's presents.

Booboobooboo84 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:31:09

I would say as they aren't dishing out presents either you just send a round robin message saying let's not do presents at all as it's not fair for you to fork out if they aren't going too.

KH369 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:31:32

AdalindSchade, I had offered to bring their sons present round but each time i was told they were busy that day or they will pick it up on way home but never did, I don't have a car and they actually live closer than my nearest post office but I don't want to just leave it outside for everyone to see/anyone to take.

Ifailed Mon 09-Oct-17 08:35:26

And people go on about how wonderful xmas is? It's this sort of entitlement and expectation (driving by marketing) that has sucked the joy out of what used to be a family holiday. Don't give in to it, OP. concentrate on have a great time with your own family and ignore the grabby sods. I suspect that 1/2 of them will be in silent agreement with you.

chocdog Mon 09-Oct-17 08:42:08

Jesus Christ. This sort of thing is so depressing. YANBU.

ifonly4 Mon 09-Oct-17 08:43:14

We only spend £8-13 on each child depending on what we find that we find they'd like, but the rest of the family spend the same so it's mutual. It might be worth saying to them that you're trying to cut back, therefore will be spending approx x on each child and you thought you'd let them know now in case they want to adjust what they're spending on your family.

roundaboutthetown Mon 09-Oct-17 08:43:32

Sounds much easier for everyone to just stop giving presents at all. Clearly nobody is doing it out of love, or they wouldn't be so f*cking petty about it. Tell your dh to grow up and stop going along with his relatives' silly games.

AdalindSchade Mon 09-Oct-17 08:45:33

Yeah I was right the first time they are petty twats

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