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Learnt my lesson, don't get too involved.

(32 Posts)
bluebell9 Thu 17-Nov-16 14:54:15

I'm not after advise, just a place to vent to people who understand.

My DP and I had discussed Xmas presents for his kids. He'd said he'd agreed that the main present would come from ExW and himself and that he and I would get presents for the DSC and so would ExW and her partner.

So I've been looking out for presents and buying them. Only bought 2 for each child so far so nothing extravagant but I was excited about what I had bought and giving them to the kids.

Now DP tells me that ExW wants all the presents to be from both parents and partners and DP has agreed to this.
I feel this means I've now paid for presents that are going to be from everyone. I'd also bought things to be used at our house and now as they are from everyone, this might not be the case.

I understand now that I shouldn't have got so involved, they aren't my kids and it's not up to me to choose and buy the presents, but this was done with DPs agreement. I'm just feeling a little down as I was excited about Christmas and giving them the presents that I'd spent time thinking of and getting things that they would love. I know it's not about me and the kids will still get the lovely presents I bought.

CannotEvenDeal Thu 17-Nov-16 16:09:48

I think you're being a bit hard on yourself. Don't beat yourself up over an act of kindness!

I don't really get why the ex gets to dictate who the presents come from though. That would annoy me big time.

abbsismyhero Thu 17-Nov-16 16:15:25

I would say no to that plan

NCForThisThreadObviously Thu 17-Nov-16 16:29:55

I would say no to that plan, too. I would give the children a gift when I saw them over Christmas.

HouseworkIsASin10 Thu 17-Nov-16 16:35:10

I'd say no. Tell DP you will be giving the presents yourself when you see them. Don't let his ex start dictating who you give presents to.

Msqueen33 Thu 17-Nov-16 16:36:34

I'd just pretend I hadn't got them and then give them over xmas. Why does she get to dictate?

SoupDragon Thu 17-Nov-16 16:43:00

I'd also bought things to be used at our house and now as they are from everyone, this might not be the case.

Surely they would always have been used at whatever house the child wanted to use them at?

Nevertheless, I'm not entirely sure how much it matters who the presents are nominally from. If it bothers you that much can you hold them back for birthdays instead?

Bobochic Thu 17-Nov-16 16:45:13

Absolutely crazy for divorced/separated parents to give joint presents to their DC. Asking for trouble.

youokayhun Thu 17-Nov-16 16:47:03

I would also say no.

JustSpeakSense Thu 17-Nov-16 17:52:58

I'd say 'no thanks, I've already bought presents from me for the stepchildren' you are welcome to make your own arrangements.

SciFiG33k Thu 17-Nov-16 17:57:47

Just say no and then give them to DSC from just you if your DH wants to do all his presents with his ex. I often give DSD a small extra present especially from me usually a pretty dress that clearly DH wouldn't have picked wink

I agree with bobochic joint present is a bad idea. It sends mixed messages to DC and would mean you would all have to have christmas present time all together. It may be OK for a one off really big gift but all presents every year is surely not sustainable.

OnceMoreIntoTheBleach Thu 17-Nov-16 18:12:08

Blue I feel for you. I'm in the middle of my own internal vent about DSS birthday before Xmas. Xmas drama to follow.

I agree with PP - reject the plan and give the presents.

FeedMeAndTellMeImPretty Thu 17-Nov-16 18:29:29

XH and I give joint gifts, as do DP & his ex to their DCs. Then I also end up giving my own little gifts and sometimes going halves with DP on something big for mine, so I'm funding 3 x presents for my DCs!!

I think they should be able to use/keep their gifts wherever they choose regardless of who bought them, but I would make sure they know which ones you chose. Will you all be together when they open them? If not then say you would rather keep yours back to give when you see them.

sterlingcooper Thu 17-Nov-16 19:02:56

It does seem odd, why does she want all presents to be from everyone? How will the kids receive them, are you all spending Xmas together so doing all present giving together? Otherwise it surely doesn't make sense.

DontMindMe1 Thu 17-Nov-16 19:13:20

Hmmm...wondering if the ex's change of plan has more to do with 'sharing' the expense of the presents she wants to buy? grin

She sounds like the kind who will call trumps on what presents are bought as well.

I'm also wondering if maybe this is her way of minimising your role/relationship with sdc?
Like you said you want to show the sdc that you care about them and you want to build that family relationship, but with joint presents it just comes across as 'mum and dad did all this' because that's how it's always been.

Just politely decline the ex's suggestion.
You are your own family unit, it's your money and you are free to give gifts to anyone you please.

The1975 Thu 17-Nov-16 20:15:36

I think you have to say no & explain your POV on this. Give the presents you've bought when it's just you & DP.

My DP and his ex bought DSS a joint birthday present. I wasn't overjoyed about it, but just kept quiet and arranged something for him from me, DP & my DD.

Haven't had the discussion about Christmas presents yet.....

SteppingOnToes Thu 17-Nov-16 20:21:38

Oh god another thing to worry about! I hadn't even thought presents could be an issue...

Bananasinpyjamas1 Thu 17-Nov-16 23:28:38

Just keep and give your own presents. What is the actual day going to involve? If it is Ex having the kids for Xmas Day and giving them their big presents 'from her and your DP' then that is a bit crap. Really separating presents out is good as you are going to have a future of separate Xmas's are you not?

crusoe16 Fri 18-Nov-16 06:26:05

I get that the big presents might be a shared cost between the two parents (especially if it's something like a phone) and given as a joint present but don't get the and partners bit at all. I'd say no OP. If you've spent your own money on a few little gifts for your SC, you give them to them.

CauliflowerSqueeze Fri 18-Nov-16 06:35:07

The goalposts changed on this and that's not fair.
I think I would say that I would like to buy them a present each but if he would like to get involved in the big present sharing part then that's up to him. As pp have said - fraught with issues.

swingofthings Fri 18-Nov-16 08:34:19

Your Partner made an arrangement. You might not like it, but that's his choice. I personally think it is silly too, but ultimately, I believe that you should support his choices.

I would suggest you return the presents, or you keep them for birthdays. You can then discuss the whole thing with your partner so that things are different next year.

Underthemoonlight Fri 18-Nov-16 08:37:29

I can understand going joint for a present like a phone or laptop that can be used at both houses but not all presents what's going to happen when they open them they will be at the exw house so you will have contributed but not get the pleasure of seeing them open them.

Blu Fri 18-Nov-16 08:38:25

Where will the children be on Xmas morning? If at ExW's just have the presents under your tree for when they come to you.

sterlingcooper Fri 18-Nov-16 09:01:11

I don't think it matters so much if they don't have a tag on saying they are specifically from you. Where I live (not UK) the custom is not to put 'from' labels on any gifts as they are all supposedly from Santa, even among adults.

But if what is being suggested means that you won't actually be there when the kids open the gifts you have carefully chosen for then, that is different and not a very gracious thing for your DP and his ex to be suggesting.

bluebell9 Fri 18-Nov-16 09:04:35

I've told my DP how I feel about it but it's been agreed now.
Luckily he forgot about one of the presents I'd got them and the ExW doesn't know they were going to be Xmas presents, so I'm going to give them to the DSC before Xmas, with the blessing of my DP.
We will all be together Xmas morning (lucky me!) so we will get to see the kids open the presents. ExW didn't want the kids to think Daddy had got them better presents than Mummy.
I've told him that if he wants to do joint presents with his ExW in the future, not to include me and I will get separate presents.

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