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to feel my mother shouldn't buy so much for DD?

(19 Posts)
somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 13:38:31

OK, will try and say this without sounding ungrateful. My mother is great in many ways, a wonderful support to our family, she often looks after DD at short notice if I have to work and can't get childcare (I work freelance). However, she is always buying stuff for DD for no reason i.e. not birthday or xmas. She buys her a lot of clothes, which I'm fine with really although I worry that she spends too much of her own money on us but she came round at the weekend with a big box of duplo from Hamleys, which cost over 40 quid. I said it was really generous of her but that I'd rather we kept it for DD's 2nd birthday in just over 3 months time because it seemed to me to be too big to be just an 'occasional' present. She seemed quite disappointed and said DD's too young to be spoilt and she just enjoys giving her things and as she's looking after her on a couple of occasions this week she thought it would be fun for them to have something new to play with.

i don't want to be a complete killjoy it's just that DH and I both feel quite strongly that if she gets presents all the time, she'll stop appreciating them. But then again, it is my mother's money so I suppose she should be free to spend it as she likes.

So what's it to be? Am I being ungrateful and overly-strict?

meltedmarsbars Mon 14-Sep-09 13:51:16

Be grateful.

My mil posts presents to 2 of my kids but not the third (disabled) one "because she couldn't think what she'd want". sad

rubyslippers Mon 14-Sep-09 13:53:31

i think that you can save it up - you don't need to give it to DD at the time

you are happy for your mum to buy your DD clothes but not other stuff ... do you not have the room to store lots of stuff?

you could also suggest that your mum keeps some bits at her house?

rubyslippers Mon 14-Sep-09 13:53:34

i think that you can save it up - you don't need to give it to DD at the time

you are happy for your mum to buy your DD clothes but not other stuff ... do you not have the room to store lots of stuff?

you could also suggest that your mum keeps some bits at her house?

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:02:10

meltedmarsbars really sorry to hear that sad - must be v v upsetting

rubyslippers can't really explain why I feel differently about clothes, I guess it's just an age thing. DD def isn't old enough to care about clothes but she's of an age to recognise when she's getting something new and exciting in the toy line and I don't want her to get too 'used' to that feeling because I think it takes some of the joy out of it for her ultimately i.e. what's a treat if you're getting treats all the time. Also she'd be as happy with a 99p bottle of bubbles as she would with something really quite expensive - though I appreciate that she'll get more long-term fun from the latter. It's not so much a question of space although I don't want the house overrun with toys because I just don't think kids need that many things. It also worries me because my mum doesn't spend anything on herself and I worry about her putting all her money towards us. She's just turned 70 and is still working part-time - I'd be happier if she gave up work and spent less money on gifts for her family

rubyslippers Mon 14-Sep-09 14:03:23

it's hard - your mum sounds lovely and generous and it clearly brings her pleasure

is yoru DD a first granchild?

meltedmarsbars Mon 14-Sep-09 14:06:49

Something, I'm used to it now, she's 7. I see it as a sad reflection on my mil's generation, not a personal attack on me or my dcs.

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:07:43

No, she has another granddaughter who lives a long way away but her parents (my brother and sister-in-law) are separated and the situation is quite awkward she doesn't get to see her very often and therefore they don't have such a close relationship. I'm a bit concerned about that too because my brother must be aware of her different relationship with the two DGCs and although it's mostly down to the circumstances, it must be a bit upsetting for him

rubyslippers Mon 14-Sep-09 14:09:56

well, maybe that is why your mum is spoiling your DD - as she doesn't get the same opportunities to do that with ther other GCs

i would leave things TBH

sad @ marsbars experience

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:10:27

melted I'm sure you're right to see it that way - and I expect your DD gets plenty of fab presents from you and the rest of the family.

BTW, I'm not anti present giving at all and occasionally a little surprise for no reason can be lovely but I've just seen it become the norm for so many kids I know where every time they see a relative they expect a present

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:12:27

ruby hmm - perhaps you're right, will mull over for a while longer and then inevitably back down grin

groundhogs Mon 14-Sep-09 14:19:54

hmm, hard one, but YANBU, too young to spoil??? when exactly does she think it starts then?

I'd say to her that you really want to make birthdays, easter, christmas special so the main gifts need to be bought then, anything else, to speak to you first about it. Little teeny tiny bits, not a problem, but Duplo stuff at over £40? that's a present, not an everyday thing.

My DS has spent most of his life far from his GP, so when we moved back recently, it was natural that my parents went a little bonkers to begin with, Mt dad buying him a bike, Mum buying this that and the other. But I said to them, I understand you want to make up for lost time, but I'm not going to let him have everything he wants all the time, so the Bike OK, this and that OK, but anything else, we'll save for birthday/christmas... They are fine with it.
We have to teach our children restraint. More so now than ever.

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:26:32

groundhogs yes, it's tricky. Also DD's birthday is on xmas day so hard to make it a 'special day' for her. But then again I can see everyone massively compensating for that over the years. She has a big, very loving and generous family so she's never going to go without so to speak. Mum and I have had this conversation lots of times before (in a gentle way) where she's spent far more than I ever would on a v fancy coat (that will only fit for a max of 6 months) I just don't know how hard to drive the message home. And now I think maybe I'm being a bit harsh. Useful to hear your experiences though

wb Mon 14-Sep-09 14:29:54

yanbu - we have the same with both sets of grandparents and although I am really grateful I insist anything approaching a big present is kept for birthdays or Christmas. I do truly believe that it is bad for children to have too many things / a constant stream of new things.

One grandma has dealt with this buy stocking a toy cupboard at her house with toys (new stuff turns up thee quite often). I don't object to that at all - makes trips to her house even more special and the toys can be played with by all grandchildren (in reality mostly by mine as we live closest but they belong to 'all')

meltedmarsbars Mon 14-Sep-09 14:33:19

wb, the toy cupboard at gp works well - we also take outgrown-but-still-played-with toys there as a step closer to getting shot of them completely.

somethinganything Mon 14-Sep-09 14:41:19

toy cupboard at grandparents' place sounds like a good plan but my mum really has no space, one bedroom flat and she is a real horder so every available square inch is taken up.

MermaidSpam Mon 14-Sep-09 22:10:07

YANBU - Children are never too young to be spoilt IMHO
Used to buy DD all the time (out of guilt for working long hours) and she knew that anytime we went to any shop, she would get something - queue mega tantrums when she didn't get!

CarGirl Mon 14-Sep-09 22:15:28

"she's a real horder"

I think your Mum has a new outlet for her "buying Stuff" issues tbh.

dollybird Mon 14-Sep-09 22:26:06

does anyone else's DC get MASSIVELY spoilt at xmas/birthdays? We can't get everything from MIL in the car on xmas day and we've got a Zafira!

Also, MIL always buys the DC whose birthday it isn't a couple of presents too which just winds me up! DS asked her why a while ago and she said 'when you were little and it was 'DD's birthday you whinnyed'. This is totally not true as I remember her commenting at the time that he wasn't phased by her getting loads of stuff/attention at all! (he was only 2 when DD had her 1st birthday).

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