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Presents for DCs Dad?

(30 Posts)
IneedAwittierNickname Tue 10-Dec-13 15:26:41

Hi all, I am asking this in both lone and step parents so that I can get a good range of responses.

I want to know who, in your opinion, is responsible for providing a Christmas present for the other parent?

When I was a child (of divorced parents) my Mum made sure we had a card/present for my Dad, and vice versa.This to me, seems like a fair, and logical solution, so is the format I have followed.

My ex and I separated last year, and he didn't get me anything for my birthday (from the DC I mean) or Christmas. I, OTOH, bought him a Fathers day present and took him out for lunch, and bought a birthday present at the DCs request.

Then at Christmas the Dc asked if we could buy Daddy something, so we did. Only right IMO. But, when I gave it to him, he said "huh, you shouldn't have bothered, NP (new partner) got me something from the boys"
And when Dc asked him if they could go and get me something, he said "No, that's not my job".

So who's job is it? I don't have a new partner, so his logic there is flawed. And his partner bought and wrapped something the DC had never even seen 'from them', she even wrote in a card from them, despite them never having seen it confused (DC were 8 and 6 Christmas last year, so not too small to write themselves BTW)

Sorry, thats become rather long! And just to clarify, I'm not a jealous bitter ex, neither am I grabby and moaning about lack of presents (although I am very aware that thats how it looks). Its just that the DC have already asked if we can go and buy Daddy something for Christmas, and I feel that as the other parent to his DC I should. But the child in me says why should I, when he won't have afforded me the same courtesy. And if I do, which I will for the DC, he effectively gets 2 presents from them, and I get none. fsad

Loveineveryspoonful Fri 27-Dec-13 12:25:17

How about a homemade present for all them that becomes your traditional token present?
I send my inlaws who live abroad homemade Xmas pudding every year. It's up to mil if she chooses to share with rest of family...
You could make up a parcel of mince pies or any other treat your dc like? Christmassy and personal and yet not pushy.

Beccawoo Fri 27-Dec-13 08:58:30

So last Year (first Xmas apart) I bought dcs dad a box Of chocolates and wrote a card from dcs. It was pretty much thrown back in my face with a comment about how I was 'wasting his money' as I'm not back at work and it is maintenance I'm living off. (dcs currently 3 and 1.5!)

So this year I didn't get a present for fear of this again, but did get kids a 'daddy' card to write. When he collected them Xmas day, his gf, ow, hands me wrapped box of chocolates, plus a card for me and new DP from her and my XH. Awkward?! And isn't it a bit weird that present /card is from them and not dcs?! No sign of any 'mummy' cards, so I didn't get one this year. Is that now my new dps job rather than dcs dad? DP git dad card from his Xp. All so confusing! Any thought?!

IneedAwittierNickname Tue 24-Dec-13 21:39:00

Well I took the dc in town, and let them pick a present for their dad, ds2 insisted he wanted a pack of handkerchiefs! (ex is not a hanky kind of man). Anyway they were delighted with their purchases, I spent less than a tenner total, so all happy.

Then this evening, I had a text from the gf...

"look ineed you need to accept the fact that me n d r 2geva. He dusnt want u back n neva will so y did u feel the need 2 buy him presents? I have got stuff 4 the kids 2 give him so back off."

Wtf! I asked the dc if she had taken them out to get presents, they said no so I assumed she hadn't! But apparently, taking the dc out to buy their dad something means I want him back.

Madness! Ah well. Hopefully he will be gracious enough to accept the presents tomorrow and pretend he loves them.

Merry Christmas to you all smile

Loveineveryspoonful Mon 23-Dec-13 11:02:44

For a second there I thought I had sleepwalked and posted that, the similarities are striking indeed... But then I reread and saw you were a lp for 6 years, me 8!

theredhen Mon 23-Dec-13 03:02:41

I've always encouraged ds to but his dad something, just a card and pound land type gift. I think it's teaching ds a good lesson. Ex would sometimes remember to encourage ds to buy me something and sometimes not. So I used to encourage ds myself, give him the money and stand outside the shop. Used to make me a bit sad but I know I was teaching ds a positive lesson. I did that for the 6 or 7 years on my own. Even now he's 15, I nag remind him about presents etc for other people .

My dsc have never been encouraged to buy their dad anything by their mum. I've done that when they were younger with much disinterest from them hmm. They're older now and still treat this side of the family with little more than contempt sometimes.

I am regularly told about the lavish and thoughtful gifts they have bought mum and mums boyfriend with their own money whilst they often leave getting their dad anything until the last minute and then it's often not a very thoughtful present.

I don't just blame their mum for their attitude , I blame him for accepting their bad attitude. I remember frog marching my then 12 year old ds to the shops when he had forgotten my Mother's Day card. I feel it's my job as a parent to teach him respect and if the other parent won't bother , then it's down to you, i'm afraid.

However, I do think a "token" gift is all that should come from your finances. No way would I fund days out or lavish gifts. Something thoughtful but cheap all the way.

shey02 Mon 23-Dec-13 01:56:56

If you have a civil relationship with the ex, these things are easier to navigate I guess. It only happened once that my ex 'forgot', it was horrible for the children, for them to be 'embarassed' that they didn't have anything for me, I could have killed him for doing that to them, being so insensitive. On that occasion my bf covered by telling my oldest that her dad had had a package delivered to the house.... Blah blah, you get the picture, he still looked good but my bf's actions embarassed him so much, it didn't happen again. Gifts and cards go back and forth on the special occasions, it's for the kids because it's fun for them.

I guess if the relationship is more stressful, perhaps it's just easier to get another family member to take responsiblity or just go shopping together and as for him, I'd still send a card of small box of chocolates or bottle of wine, etc. Nothing expensive, just so your kids don't feel awkward. You'd be doing it for them, not him.

Notsoskinnyminny Sat 14-Dec-13 19:04:26

I used to buy and post presents to ex who lives abroad but never got anything for Christmas or my birthday even though I'm still in contact with ex-MIL and she could've taken DCs to the shops to buy me a card. When they got to about 12 & 15 I laminated a sheet with his birthday, address etc and left it up to them to decide whether or not to send anything but I never asked if they did.

MsColour Fri 13-Dec-13 12:27:32

*way not easy

MsColour Fri 13-Dec-13 12:27:06

In our house my dp will buy presents for me from my kids as my ex won't and he will also take dss to buy a present for his mum. Feels a bit weird that way but that's the easy it works out. Last year my ds wanted to buy a reindeer toy for his dad last year (the last thing I wanted to do as he was taking me to court) but when I gave them the option of getting him something for father's day they didn't want to know.

IneedAwittierNickname Wed 11-Dec-13 17:36:31

To be fair, I do use the wooden spoons a lot,.and I think of him when ever I do!

purpleroses Wed 11-Dec-13 12:09:46

grin at the wooden spoons.

I think I ended up with a packet of cereal bars and a film I'd never heard of... but they did enjoy choosing and wrapping those up. Actually yes, my DD's primary school does a parents present room too - it's a lovely idea for single parents. DD's only been at that school a couple of years though so it was before then that I sent them to into the corner shop without me.

IneedAwittierNickname Wed 11-Dec-13 11:08:21

purpleroses out school have a 'parents present' area that parents are not allowed in,.and a teacher helps them wrap something that has been.donated. last year ds2 won some wooden spoons on a raffle and insisted I needed them for Christmas fgrin.and
i agree that they have to learn to give as recieve,which is why I will continue to buy for him for as long as they ask to.
absent he wouldn't take them to the shop if I did that sad good idea though!

I think I'm.just going to have to get.used to it! I can't work out if he's thoughtless or spiteful tbh, a bit of both I think!

absentmindeddooooodles Wed 11-Dec-13 10:36:21

My xp and I do this for my ds.

Hes only 2.9 but I think we will coninue to do this until ds has his own money ( late teens). We buy eachother a pressie anyway as still on great terms.

I have a new partner but xp does not. If my dp started buying things on behalf of ds I would be v v pissed off. Its not his place. He is not ds father.

Your xh is bvu! If he does not want to spend any money could you give the boys a couple of quid to go and do this while they are with their dad? Would that make any difference?

purpleroses Wed 11-Dec-13 10:31:07

I always help my DCs buy for their dad, as even though he has a DW she has no involvement with the DCs and wouldn't help them. I wouldn'd help my DSC buy for DP if I thought his ex was doing it, but would do otherwise. I don't think there's hard and fast rules though. They're old enough to be given some money to sort it themselves though now, so neither their DM or I have any involvment in choosing for DP.

I think your ex is being crap in not helping them to buy for you, as you don't have a new DP so there's no one else who can do this. He's either being nasty in rubbing in that you don't have a DP, or he's thoughtless. My ex was usually crap too (thoughtless rather than nasty), and for many years I helped the DCs buy him one and got nothing back. I just made sure that I didn't spend too much on him so that I didn't get too resentful, but felt it was important to teach the DCs about giving as well as receiving presents. One year I sent them to the corner shop with some money - they were about 5 and 8 at the time and I waited outside. I ended up with some very strange presents hmm

This year, though I think they initiated it and they bought me a birthday present recently online, which he had apparently helped them with smile

Glad your mum is helping out now.

DLCC Wed 11-Dec-13 08:52:08

What my ex and I decided was that for Mothers/Fathers Day, birthdays and Christmas we would have a budget of £20 and buy each other something from our DS's (9&4)

IneedAwittierNickname Tue 10-Dec-13 22:31:35

Thanks for all your opinions.

My mum is happy to take the dc out and buy me something so I won't go without. I just wondered really if it was unusual/unreasonable for me to think he would do it.

Well, happy Christmas to you all... Whoever buys your presents fgrin

heidiwine Tue 10-Dec-13 22:25:32

And I should add that DP always buys a gift for his ex with their children. In fact the ex usually puts in a request with the eldest child... The request (regardless of the cost - sometimes up to £100!!!) is always honoured.

heidiwine Tue 10-Dec-13 22:23:35

After my 6ft 3inch DP was given a ladies t-shirt with the charity shop ticket still on it I took matters into my own hands. Now I take my DPs children shopping for his Xmas present - I give them a set amount of money each and let them choose (with a little help if necessary). The first year I did this I checked with his ex first (seemed polite and adult). IMO that's what your Exes new partner should have done but she hasn't and that's that.

In your case I think that your ex is being particularly uncooperative. My parents had a very nasty divorce and I lost contact with my dad. For my mums Xmas and b'day my gran used to take us to woolworths and help is choose something. I loved doing that and my sisters and I took great care over our choices and were super excited about giving the gifts. Perhaps you could suggest that to someone in it family (lets yourex off the hook while providing your children with a positive experience of giving)?

LittleOwlie Tue 10-Dec-13 21:35:56

This is a tough one...I'm a SM, and in the past, I've been really hurt on behalf of my DP, as his DC haven't really even acknowledged his birthdays til this year. His DC live with their mum.

We have always listened to the the holidays we always get their mum a souvenir, as they love choosing something. We don't do birthday or Xmas presents for their DM as they don't live with us, but Im pretty sure this year they will arrive with nothing for my DP.

My DPs divorce was fairly horrendous...I think this is the main reason why. More recently to be fair things have got better. We got Father's Day cards and presents and birthday cards this year.

From my side, I've always been happy to let the DSC to get gifts for their mum, irrespective of whether my DP gets the same in return. A couple of £s two or three times a year doesn't worry me and it makes them so happy to do something nice.

I'm not disrespecting their DM, but I think treating others as you would like to be treated is my motto, even if it's not reciprocated.

IneedAwittierNickname Tue 10-Dec-13 18:14:34

The fact that you asked shows that you weren't trying to be controlling IMO. My exs np had only been with him 2months and she was buying presents on the dcs behalf!

bellabom Tue 10-Dec-13 18:12:12

grin I don't know why it's inappropriate... Something to do with me trying to control everything and ruin Christmas blushblush

IneedAwittierNickname Tue 10-Dec-13 18:07:46

Oh don't worry wait it will be from poundland!

Bellabom how is it inappropriate confused. I only.think its unfair as I buy for him. And he doesnt. You can bet that if him and her split up, he will be expecting me to buy presents from them.

JazzTheDog Tue 10-Dec-13 18:06:06

Me and my ex get gifts for each other from our DS (well DS picks and we pay).

DH and his ex don't do gifts, DH spent years buying for his kids to give and she couldn't even give them money for a card so he stopped because the kids were old enough to make cards etc if they wanted to.

bellabom Tue 10-Dec-13 18:01:21

I don't enjoy buying a gift for my dd's dad (my ex) and I never used to get anything in return, but she always loved to buy her daddy something so I did it. Only a tenner or something but nice for her to enjoy "giving".

Now he has a new wife, she makes sure that my dd gets me something and she gets something from dd for her dad grin she's lush.

As for my step daughter, she always got a gift for her dad that her mum paid for. One year I offered to do it and mum told me it was "inappropriate" hmm now she's older so she buys mum and dad gifts with her own money.

WaitMonkey Tue 10-Dec-13 18:00:47

Take them to Poundland. Let them pick one thing each for him. Dc will be happy and you haven't wasted to much money.

You could even give them an extra £1 each and let them pick something for you and get them to hide it until Christmas. That way you also get a gift.

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