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To think my 12.5 year old dsd should be able to think of something herself by now...

(66 Posts)
handsfree Thu 07-Dec-17 07:54:55

Happy to be told I’m being Aibu as I don’t know any other 12 year old girls!!
I have helped dsd with presents for her dad the last few years. Which is basically meant I’ve chosen something, bought it and wrapped and and she has just handed it over. This has been because she’s never really had an idea of what to buy or only a very vague idea, and I’ve been fine with that as she was younger. However, she’s messaged me again asking what she could get for her dad and still has nothing more than the very vaguest of ideas. I don’t mind buying it and wrapping it or providing the money for her to get it but I really feel at 12.5 she should be coming up with something herself - I know dh would appreciate this a lot more than something that I have blatantly chosen for him!
I just want to check with those who have 12 year old girls if this is right or if you would still be expecting to chose presents on their behalf?

handsfree Thu 07-Dec-17 07:55:44

Anf before anyone suggests it, it’s not possible for me to just take her out shopping as we live a long way apart!

Myreputation Thu 07-Dec-17 07:57:37

Why don’t you go shopping together? My dc are great for ideas for presents but they enjoy choosing together. It wouldn’t be the same if I bought it without them. I don’t think it’s a big deal though in your dsd’s case so don’t make it one.

Myreputation Thu 07-Dec-17 07:58:02

Oh cross post! Just help her out with some ideas then.

Fresta Thu 07-Dec-17 08:01:58

My 12 year old has her own ideas, but needs help, mainly because DH is so bloody hard to buy for- he doesn't like a lot! She loves making him a homemade card though and buying things that are affordable with pocket money like chocolates etc.

sothatdidntwork Thu 07-Dec-17 08:01:59

Op I realise you can't go shopping together, but could you maybe do a telephone call (I know this is social death for teens and preteens rather than texting, but if you can persuade her!) and help dsd come up with ideas about what he might like - 'hmm, what's he interested in, what does he need'? Maybe look at a couple of websites together while you're on your phones to see if there's anything suitable?

Some 12 yr olds are better at taking the initiative on presents than others - so it certainly wouldn't surprise me for a 12 yr old to be blank without some prompting.

Auvergne Thu 07-Dec-17 08:02:57

I think gift buying is a gift in itself. An ex partner of my dad was like this: she seemed to have an intricate talent for choosing gifts that were both meaningful and useful. My dad on the other hand was more the sort who would buy soap in a dish that looked feminine somehow and then she’d be upset because she felt he didn’t care for her as she did for him.

I think the fact she’s asking shows she’s anxious to get it right. I wouldn’t have had a clue what to get my dad when I was twelve either.

iseenodust Thu 07-Dec-17 08:03:38

DS age 13 has bought presents that he has chosen for the last couple of years for DH & me but it's been as we've gone round an xmas market together ( I haven't steered him to anything though). I don't think he would be good starting from scratch with an online search. So I think give your dsd some pointers.

Dancinggoat Thu 07-Dec-17 08:15:40

It's lovely she's thinking about it. Gift buying is hard. In laws and my parents ask what to buy kids and other half every year. It's not that they are frail, they are well and always out and about. Drives me potty because I sort out gifts for everyone to give everyone else as well as my own. The poor brain cells.

I'd be very surprised if she could come up with ideas.

My kids started thinking of what to buy from about 16 up but that was with prompting , reminding and the odd bit of nagging.

FinallyHere Thu 07-Dec-17 08:17:57

Age is not really relevant, my elder sister has always been brilliant about choosing presents, I'm only really just getting the hang of it in mid-life. Is DSD asking in a 'please, you sort it all out for me' or in a 'what can I do, I really want to get this right' way? I think it matters, but either way , I would probably to talk her through ( PP right, probably by txt) the process choosing a gift. What did he get last year, did he. Like it, what sort of things does he like generally, what is the budget etc?

This is something you don't have to do, but i think helping would be a kindness. If the child's attitude is good, it would be a great bonding exercise for you. Enjoy.

KatieKookaburra26 Thu 07-Dec-17 08:19:13

Does she see her dad often?. I saw my dad every other weekend as a kid and didn’t know much about him so never knew what to get for birthday/Christmas etc

user1493413286 Thu 07-Dec-17 08:21:47

I think it’s difficult for children to think of something out of thin air without looking round the shops. My DD sometimes has a vague idea but that normally becomes more concrete by looking online or looking round the shops. Could you suggest she looks for ideas online?

MargaretCavendish Thu 07-Dec-17 08:21:49

I'm 34 and I still have a conversation with mum twice a year where I say, 'so, any ideas for dad for Christmas/his birthday?'. Though she normally says, 'not really no' and then we have a mutual moan about how hard he is to buy for! I'm obviously not expecting my mum to buy or wrap it for me, but my dad is almost impossible to buy for so asking the person he lives with if he's suddenly, miraculously, developed any hobbies or wants doesn't seem unreasonable...

TatianaLarina Thu 07-Dec-17 08:24:55

Why doesn’t she ask him directly for a list of present ideas. I always do that for my dad because he’s so hard to buy presents for.

DontCallMeBaby Thu 07-Dec-17 08:25:51

DD is 13 and does choose and buy presents for herself - I’d not want to actually go and buy stuff on her behalf now, but I’d advise. I hate having to though - DH and my parents are hard enough to buy for myself, let alone come up with something for her.

Tell her at 12 she’s still young enough for any decent person to appreciate whatever she gets them, she’s still just about got the ‘aw’ factor on her side!

EdmundCleverClogs Thu 07-Dec-17 08:27:45

My MiL asks me what to get my partner. It’s because I’m the one (stuck) with him all the time, I know if there is a specific ‘thing’ he’s had his eye on for a while or mentioned in chatting. To be honest, no I wouldn’t expect a 12 year old to have that self awareness or listen out for ‘hints’. I’d definitely either go shopping with her and ‘guide’ her in the right direction, or I’d say ‘your dad has mentioned getting this book/shirt/game etc, which one would you like to get him’.

Codlet Thu 07-Dec-17 08:29:45

I have a 12yo DS. We go shopping together for presents for family members, but I can imagine him being completely clueless if he had to do it on his own. So your DSD doesn’t sound unusual to me.

CheapSausagesAndSpam Thu 07-Dec-17 08:31:43

DD is 13 and tends to buy DH silly things for fun...it shouldn't be a source of stress for a child.

As someone else said, go shopping with her...make it a nice trip! It's meant to be fun.

pilates Thu 07-Dec-17 08:33:29

Surely you can give her an idea over the phone, ie he needs some socks/pants and tell her what size and style he likes. I would expect her to wrap it though. Probably more difficult for her to pick up on what he needs if they aren’t living together. Dads are notoriously hard to buy for.

maddiemookins16mum Thu 07-Dec-17 08:33:39

My 13 year old DD has no idea, well she does but she gets no further than socks and Haribo Minions for her dad! This year I gave her two words - namely Geocaching and Thrones. She has subsequently purchased a GoT beanie and some Geocaching bits and bobs for him.

Iwasjustabouttosaythat Thu 07-Dec-17 08:34:49

If you live too far away to go shopping with her does she actually see her dad very often? If not then she probably doesn't know him well enough to buy for him. If you see him daily then I think it's fair enough that she asks you.

HermioneIsMe Thu 07-Dec-17 08:35:00

Two dcs here. One is 12yo, the other 14yo.
They’ve both bought the present for myself and their dad in their own this year and last year.
They actually started even befire in primary school who had a special shop (full of total rubbish) run by the PTA.
We help in that we are the one to buy the stuff (usually online shopping) but they give us the money back.
Our input is minimum. More of ‘what do you think of my idea’ type of question form them.

Both H and myself are hard to buy too....

CatastropheKate Thu 07-Dec-17 08:35:32

I'm 46 and shit at buying presents, so yes, YABU in expecting a 12 year old to pick out the perfect gift.

OpalTree Thu 07-Dec-17 08:38:47

Could you send her a link to Next/Marks/Debenhams men's gift section and get her to pick from that?

SaucyJack Thu 07-Dec-17 08:40:54

Does she actually see him enough to be able to guess what he'd like?

Does he have a "thing" (Star Wars, craft beer, yadda yadda), and would she know what it is?

My nearly 13 year old doesn't struggle to pick stuff for me, but she lives with me, and she knows the easy stuff I like such as Harry Potter tat from Primark or smelly candles.

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