Christmas present etiquette

(18 Posts)
DramaQueenofHighCs Tue 29-Nov-16 09:15:00

Hi, I'm hoping the lovely ladies here can help me with this.

I'm wondering what the etiquette is with giving presents/cards to relatives step-children. To give context:

My cousin is married to a lovely man who has a daughter by his previous girlfriend who doesn't live with them. In the past I have to admit that I have only sent a card/present addressed to "Cousin & Husband" as, as I said the daughter doesn't live with them. However this year my cousin had a baby and I would obviously like to get something for the new baby too, but this has made me think about the step-daughter and not wanting her to feel left out. I'm really not sure what to do as I don't know the SD at all (I barely know the DH), and I'm a total worrier and don't want to leave her out, but also don't want to be the weird one who gets her something if it's not the usual thing! (When my uncle remarried I got his SCs small presents but they live with him and I know them - I don't even know this girls name.)

My gut is telling me I don't have to get her anything as she is not my relative, she doesn't live with my cousin and I don't know her but... Am I right?

Thanks in advance!

bobbinpop Tue 29-Nov-16 09:18:17

I think it would be nice to get her something, particularly as there is a new baby. Of course you don't have to, but I think it would be kind to send a present.

DramaQueenofHighCs Tue 29-Nov-16 09:38:53

Thanks, those were my thoughts too. Do you think something like a small box of chocs/large chocolate bar would be ok? Nothing too big (have a small budget), but just something to let her know she is being thought of.

DramaQueenofHighCs Tue 29-Nov-16 09:39:57

(Yes I know in op I said my gut was saying I didn't have to - but my thoughts were saying it would be nice! It's a confusing world being me! grin )

SpotTheDuck Tue 29-Nov-16 10:14:28

Can you ask your cousin how they'd like you to handle it?

Lunar1 Tue 29-Nov-16 11:30:46

You can't go wrong with a selection box, will you be seeing them all together when you meet the baby? If you are maybe some age appropriate hair accessories from Claire's?

Bananasinpyjamas1 Tue 29-Nov-16 14:32:48

I did one of those secret Santa presents every year with the step kids. It was one of the very few things that bought us together, evened out all the differences between us. It also meant that the step children had to think of their half and step siblings, and their step parent - a two way process.

DramaQueenofHighCs Tue 29-Nov-16 14:33:49

Thanks all!

Yes Spot I probably could ask my cousin - stupidly hadn't thought of that! Lol

Scotmum83 Tue 29-Nov-16 14:48:38

We always give my bils step son a pressie for Birthday and Christmas, we just treat him the same as our other nephews. He has a brother now too so wouldn't feel right not getting him anything.

bobbinpop Tue 29-Nov-16 21:57:15

I'm sure chocolates would be appreciated! Both my older DDs would love that smile

MumOfTwoMasterOfNone Tue 29-Nov-16 23:44:19

I don't think anyone could criticise you for being too kind grin

DramaQueenofHighCs Wed 30-Nov-16 15:30:05

Thanks all! I'll get her a little box of chocs I think

swingofthings Wed 30-Nov-16 18:16:11

Do you know her? How old is she? I would say that most important is to include her in the card. If not yet a teenager, I would get a box of chocolate, if a teenager, I wouldn't get anything, they should care much after that age, and certainly not compare themselves with a baby.

Reading this post makes me realised how lucky my kids are. Their SM's family, although not well off at all, always get them a little something for Christmas. They are always very grateful as certainly wouldn't expect it. In the last two years, my husband and I have received a Christmas card from their step sister, even though we have never met her. I guess she hears quite a bit about us from my kids, so maybe we feel a bit like long distance family by proxy. I now get her a card every year too.

JenLindleyShitMom Wed 30-Nov-16 18:19:07

Better to be the kind weirdo than the aunt/cousin who included everyone but the step child.

smilingthroughgrittedteeth Wed 30-Nov-16 18:21:37

My aunt has only met my sc a handful of times but always buys them a selection box

BlueBlueSkies Wed 30-Nov-16 19:51:33

I don't expect Dh's family to think of my kids (how do live with us) at Xmas and nor do my family think of DSS (who also lives with us).

Each set of kids know which family they belong to. I would think it odd if DH's family who have never met my kids sent them presents.

Libby34 Wed 30-Nov-16 20:48:41

My mum has never met my DSD (doesn't live with us) as I moved miles away and when me and DP visit it's always without DSD. However my mum has crocheted a blanket and got her a book and a small cuddly toy to give her for Christmas. She won't know it's from my mum, she'll think it's from Santa but for me it's nice to know that my family obviously care about her feelings and aren't excluding her.

OutToGetYou Thu 01-Dec-16 22:40:14

My sister buys for my dss, I've never asked her to. I don't have my own kids and she has two, dss didn't come into my life til he was 9 and dsis started presents when he was probably 12 (after she'd met dp, and then dss) so her family will always be well ahead in the present stakes.

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