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What do you do about clothes?

(35 Posts)
NeverGoOutOfStyle Thu 27-Apr-17 23:52:06


My DP has his DS (4) every weekend and one night per week. DS's mum was packing clothes for him every weekend, and kept all items of clothing bought by DP for him. We now have a full wardrobe of clothes for him here, but things are getting a little tricky, basically once an item goes to her house, it is rarely seen again. She no longer sends clothes with him but she also rarely sends any clothes back that belong here, and treats them as hers (giving them away to friends, charities etc) we try and limit what goes back to her house but with items like socks and underwear it isn't always possible, I feel like we're constantly buying more and more because despite asking for it back items they never return or one pair of pants, or socks will come back. It's not the end of the world, but we don't really have the money to continually replace things and it does mount up when money is quite tight right now.

What do other people do regarding clothes? Does your partners ex provide the clothes or do you have separate things?

TheFallenMadonna Thu 27-Apr-17 23:59:22

Doesn't he come in one set and go back in another? Can't the pants just travel with him?

MyLittleBoyBlue Thu 27-Apr-17 23:59:26

I assume you mean the pants and socks he goes back to his mums wearing? Can you just wash and keep the ones he arrives in as replacements? Get your dh to have a word with her and see if that works for both of them.

clumsyduck Fri 28-Apr-17 00:13:20

Yup wash and send back in the clothes he came in . I have this but the other way round because I'd send ds to his dad's in nice clothes and never see them again angryso he knows now to change him back into what he came in .

NeverGoOutOfStyle Fri 28-Apr-17 00:40:26

He always comes to in his uniform on Friday's and one of us will collect him from nursery on our weekday overnight so it's only occasionally that he has clothes from his Mum's house on, it's normally his uniform which I always wash. I think we will just have to start making sure that he goes back in the socks and underpants he came in.

gracefull Fri 28-Apr-17 00:58:21

Can you/your DH not just communicate with his mother to explain the issue and solve it together? Surely just ask her to send some back to you when he next comes round...

soosootired Fri 28-Apr-17 01:06:20

Dealing with the mother of step kids isn't always as simple as it should be, but I hope it is here. Communication is key if it's getting a bit tricky?

NeverGoOutOfStyle Fri 28-Apr-17 01:33:55

Communication was obviously the first thing we tried and actually it's been mentioned quite a lot of times now but things still don't return. We've tried bringing it up lots of ways now and I don't want to turn it into a big, huge issue with her as for the most part we all get along really well but things between DP and his ex can often go quite sour quickly with any 'conflict' even if it's over something small. Definitely seems that just making sure he goes back in socks and underpants he came in will make it a bit easier for us though.

How do other people separated couples/step parents manage clothes? Do you each have your own or do you share them between you? or do kids coming to the NRP have a suitcase or similar with them for clothes?

newfor2017 Fri 28-Apr-17 12:44:36

DSD has clothes at both houses. Handovers are done via school so she goes back and forth in uniform which makes things a lot easier. We buy 5 sets of uniform, keep two, give Mum two and one floats between the two. Expensive but worth it in terms of ease plus we have younger kids so I can hand a lot of it down.

SteppingOnToes Fri 28-Apr-17 13:10:10

This is a common thing - a lot of mothers see the clothes they have bought as theirs and the clothes the father has bought as bonus clothes.

Sadly my DSD and DSS now go back home in their uniforms as their wordrobe at their dads was getting whittled away. The last thing they want on a Saturday morning is to be dragged clothes shopping in their uniforms from the day before.

The first time it happened she went ballistic (she was used to uniforms coming back washed and ironed also - apparently they only have one set. This was after DP giving her £50 per child for new uniforms only 8 weeks previously). The second time she asked why. The weekend past she has returned clothes. We are going to keep sending the kids back in their uniforms though and also getting the full uniforms ourselves rather than giving her the cash for them - just to ensure they have more than one white top.

Bluebell9 Fri 28-Apr-17 14:35:35

We have this issue. DCs would come straight from school on Friday and therefore go home over the weekend in other clothes. We ask their Mum for the clothes back and I make sure I send clothes that end up here back too, after I've washed them. It would be great if we could just share all the clothes but for some reason we end up with weird combinations of all t-shirts, vests and pants but no jumpers or trousers and Mum ends up not having enough of what we have lots of! Sometimes DP has to go to the house and collect what we need but on the whole, its not too bad.
If there is something that requires care when washing, DP will change DC out of it before they go home, their mum tumble dries everything and we've had clothes shrunk etc.

PepeLePew Fri 28-Apr-17 14:42:55

Clothes at both houses. They either come
back in the clothes they left in so the clothes are at the right house at the end of the visit or they come back in clothes from the other house which are then washed and returned.
Coats and shoes go back and forth with the children and we don't double up, for the most part. I think the dds may have a couple of extra pairs of shoes at their dads but mostly I buy them and they take them with them.
Underwear and socks get mixed up - can't see how else it would work. Am sure I didn't buy half of ds's underpants in his drawer upstairs but equally there are lots I did buy that aren't there. I figure that as they can only wear one pair at a time it really doesn't matter.
It does require a degree of co-operation which does in turn require communication and reasonably good relations, so I can see how it wouldn't always be easy if the situation were different.

needsahalo Fri 28-Apr-17 14:44:23

are you actually serious? You are stressed over pants and socks?

Can you just not accept that he comes in pants and socks, he goes in pants and socks and that's about the sum of it? Are you really going to say to a child 'look, put these pants on when you're going back to your mum' and not expect there to be some kind of fall out - when he cottons on to what you're doing and sees it as some kind of slight on the socks and pants his mum gives him?

I say this as someone who doesn't see good clothes (by good I mean supermarket new and almost new) until they are too small because the ex refuses to acknowledge that he has any clothes for the children whatsoever, despite the fact they go to him in their own clothing at the weekend. He will point blank stand there and say to me 'you never give me any clothes, I don't have any at all'.

There are bigger things to get worked up about than socks and pants. Go to Primark in the sales and stock up for years ahead.

SteppingOnToes Fri 28-Apr-17 14:57:13

I say this as someone who doesn't see good clothes (by good I mean supermarket new and almost new) until they are too small because the ex refuses to acknowledge that he has any clothes for the children whatsoever, despite the fact they go to him in their own clothing at the weekend. He will point blank stand there and say to me 'you never give me any clothes, I don't have any at all'.

This isn't what is happening here though - it is exactly the other way round. It's wrong for a child to have all their clothes at one home when both homes are providing them (if the father wasn't providing then he would have to just suck it up, but he is). If one parent wants to keep all the clothes at their house then they should send the children with appropriate clothes to see them through the weekend.

needsahalo Fri 28-Apr-17 15:03:10

It's wrong for a child to have all their clothes at one home when both homes are providing them

I don't disagree. I am somewhat open mouthed at the suggestion it is the socks and pants that matter, however.

NeverGoOutOfStyle Fri 28-Apr-17 17:13:24

No no, please don't get me wrong I'm not stressed out about it! I just noticed when I was catching up on all the laundry (DP is in hospital and I've been working more shifts than usual so I'm behind) that I only had much less than usual. I know that his mum gave a lot of the pants away that we had bought (she said she doesn't like that style of pants on him so gave them away) but I hadn't realised quite how few we were down too. I'm just going to buy a load more on payday and accept that it's just one of those things. It really isn't a big issue, I just wanted to see if there was maybe a better way to manage it, or if other people did things a drastically different way to us that we'd not thought of! That really was it, it's just a minor thing I had wondered about.

8FencingWire Fri 28-Apr-17 17:51:41

OP, both my partner and I have two daughters. They each have a rucksack to take to their non residential parent.
I provide two changes of clothes and pyjamas, a washbag. She provides the same.
My child brings home the dirty laundry, exH uses a laundrette and it would be a pain. They recently went away and he bought her some more stuff. We agreed the clothes/equipment etc don't belong to us as parents, but to the child, ours is old enough to buy her own and to have a say.

My partner's DD wears whatever she came in. At night she gets 'our' pyjamas and undies, that we then wash and iron ready for the next time. We send her home in whatever a little girl with a very strong will wants to wear, be it the clothes we bought, my own DD's tops or the clothes her mum sent her with. We're easy.

But. Before anything, we agree on the continuity of care of our respective children. I am a mum too, I know best as far as my child is concerned, and the same applies to my partner's exW. So if her mum says don't give her that or please do this (so she doesn't have to have the 'but daddy and 8fencing let me!!') I listen and act accordingly.
The thing is, we both want what's best for our children. We both want our children to be happy and unburdened by logistics, not stressed by the two houses thing. All I care about is that our girls are happy and they enjoy spending time with us and the transition between our two homes is done as fluidly as possible. If her mum knows her child gets overtired, I listen. We try and work together.

BurningViolin Fri 28-Apr-17 20:53:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

SciFiG33k Sat 29-Apr-17 22:45:05

DSD has two sets of everything one at ours and one at her mums. DSDs mum and I always try to send stuff we know comes from the other house back and if there is something particularly special or needed that's been forgotten DSDs mum or DH just ask each other. DSD wears what ever she likes back and forward. Socks and underwear are pretty communal. I do try to send school socks back though as DSD comes to us in uniform so we get an excess of them and DSDs mum ends up with none.

MirandaWest Sat 29-Apr-17 23:00:01

I buy DS and DSs clothes. They take them to XHs house and most of them come back. Seem to spend much of my time buying new underwear. Very rare for XH to buy any clothes but if he does they join in the general clothes and go from house to house.

wheresthel1ght Sat 29-Apr-17 23:14:33

we had this issue when we first got together.

Things like underwear etc just travel between so the pants worn on a Friday get lobbed in the wash basket and they go back in whatever they pull out the drawer on a sunday/weeknight.

Clothes were always an issue, same as for you, they would go and never be seen again. We also repeatedly spoke to their mum to no avail. I may have gone on a bit of a rampage and instead of putting clothes from her house to one side after they had been washed I just put them back in the drawers. She eventually got the message. It was petty and a tad passive aggressive, but it was the only thing that got the message across.

MachineBee Sun 30-Apr-17 09:56:56

8fencingwire your arrangements sound like heaven. My DHs ExDW will not engage with me (I am not OW) and so I used to spend a lot of time trying to second guess things. I've stepped back from trying to sort these sort of things out as part of our household routine. They are all teenagers now so it isn't the issue it was. Weird thing for me is that I get more clothes to wash than they wear when with us. I have a feeling they bring back washing and put it in our laundry basket. I just do it all without comment (life's too short) but I don't iron any of their clothes, just fold it and leave in piles for them to take up to their rooms.

unicornpoopoop Sun 30-Apr-17 10:13:48

I have this. I used to send my son a bag of clothes but they never came back so I started insisting he had clothes bought for there. They are always bought too small and are never cleaned and I always feel bad sending my son there in them. But the alternative is, me not having any.

Obviously not much I can do about pants and socks but is very annoying when he comes home wearing pants 3 sizes too small for him and no socks on... So all the good stuff gets left there never to be seen again.

MumOfTwoMasterOfNone Sun 30-Apr-17 10:17:00

When you've tried communicating about the issue and it doesn't get resolved, it's a control issue. We had this when DP picked his kids up from school on Friday and dropped them back Sunday night. The last few times, he asked them to get changed because EVERY weekend we had to take them shopping and it was ridiculous.
Of course, in her eyes this was unreasonable. It went on for YEARS and we knew she was lying over losing things etc because the kids told us they'd been wearing them. Infuriating! I don't understand people like this it's childish behaviour.

Lelloteddy Sun 30-Apr-17 13:32:51

My Ex plays this game all the time. He gets a kick out of keeping their clothes ( including school uniform and shoes, winter coats and sports gear) and has previously been warned by a family court judge to stop being such an ass about it. He then started making them change back into their uniform in a Sunday night before drop off so they wouldn't bring 'his' clothes home. Now that the kids are older, they try as much as they can to keep stuff flowing but if he has a strop over an issue, then he'll obsessively text them about a specific pair of socks that they MUST return. Anything he buys for them comes from charity shops and again, because they're getting older, they're starting to realise just how awful some if it is. It's so bloody pathetic and immature but it's a control issue/game that a lot of adults seem determined to play, regardless of the effect on kids.

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