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Mum and gifts, advice please

(5 Posts)
ThinkAboutItTomorrow Mon 29-Oct-12 15:50:18

I really struggle with my mum and gifts. I feel as though everything to do with gifts is more about her as a giver than me as a receiver. She bangs on about how i 'ruin the joy of giving' by a)not being suitably gushy about her presents and b) not having everything she has ever bought me out on display all the time / in constant use.

I'm not very dramatic expressive so can maybe seem ungrateful by not jumping up and down in excitement. But i do say a genuine thank you and make a point of using the many gifts I love.

But....she has a habit of buying what she wants for a person rather than what they would appreciate. Eg.she gave her friend a bright orange cardigan because 'she never wears anything but black'. Her friend asked if she could swap it for the black version and my mum was put out....
Or else she has a habit of buying to her taste not mine, so will buy me a classical music CD because she thinks I should start to develop a bit of a taste for classical music. I may be stuck in a musical nineties rut but it's MY musical '90's rut thank you very much.
So there are some gifts, though by no means all, which have ended up hidden away or quietly exchanged.

Anyway, I'm fed up of being harrangued about this all the time and am seriously thinking about saying this year maybe she should just buy Christmas presents for my DD, not yet 1 so also, yet to be suitably responsive to gifts. I don't want to say no gifts for my mum as my dad is dead so I'm the only one who buys her anything significant.

Am I being a brat or spoiling for a fight unnecessarily? How can I put this to her without causing more problems? Or should i let it be?

KatieScarlett2833 Mon 29-Oct-12 16:00:35

My mum and I have an annual Christmas date where we shop for each other.

We go out, browse, have lunch and purchase each others gifts which we then take home, wrap and hand out on Christmas day.

No element of surprise but we both really enjoy ourselves grin

CogitoEerilySpooky Mon 29-Oct-12 16:04:26

I'm just going to say two words.... 'fish knives'.... which apparently I was given by DM many years ago, which I don't remember receiving, wouldn't use if my life depended on it and which I get reminded about whenever I serve fish in her presence.... <gah!!> She also surprises me with really nasty cookbooks 'because you like food' (I'm a very good cook and also quite podgy) called things like '20 things to do with packet soup'.

I would go with the following. 'Rather than wasting your money this year mother dearest, let me point you in the direction of ... this.... lovely item which I'd really like'. Say a polite thank you for the classical CDs or whatever if they keep coming. And if she accuses you of ruining the joy of giving.... tell her that she ruins the art of the thoughtful gift.

Be honest, however. Are you any better at buying her gifts? I struggle...

ThinkAboutItTomorrow Mon 29-Oct-12 16:18:01

Cogito....that actually makes me feel much better, thank you. Schadenfreude i believe!

I think i get gifts to her more right than she does, she seems pleased. But then she has a pair of bloody hideous ceramic ducks (not the flying variety!) on display in her living room. She hates them but my aunt bought them for her so she feels obliged to have them visible. She got the first a few years ago and apparently my aunt thought she loved it so much she got her a second...... Maybe faking gift appreciation is a generational lost art....

CogitoEerilySpooky Mon 29-Oct-12 16:23:20

There you go.... she has suffered in order to seem grateful and so you must suffer in turn. smile With unwanted ceramics, I always think it's a pity the UK isn't in an earthquake zone....would solve a multitude of ducks.

Perhaps you could have an honesty session about what she really thinks of the gifts you give her? A 'truth and reconcilliation commission' for all those unwanted pressies down the ages. Finish with some therapeutic duck-smashing...

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