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AIBU to change DS' birthday when he's too young to decide?

309 replies

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:14

DS is 4 and his birthday is Boxing Day. Up until last year his birthday has always been fine, if inconvenient, but last year it really was rubbish that we couldn't do anything special on the day due to nothing being open. We're always at my DParents as we go there Christmas Day and it's not an option to not stay there Christmas Day night (two DCs who go to bed early).

This year just gone the weather was rubbish so we couldn't even go out for a nice walk or play in the garden. Because my DParents get to see him on his birthday it's only fair that we invite ILs too, who although I get along with them, they are a pain. I have a good relationship with my own DParents but they're a bit fussy/controlling on Christmas and his birthday (understandably so I guess as it's at their house!) so it's always been us/them awkwardly hosting ILs. Which was fine when DS was little but as he gets older he doesn't like too much fuss/formality, he only has baby DS so no other children to play with, so on his last birthday he really misbehaved due to being bored/having cabin fever/having had far too many presents and focus just on Christmas Day let alone more on his birthday. I felt sad for him as we couldn't make it special.

In comparison we've just celebrated other DS' first birthday, and although he's too young to care, we were able to do it exactly as we wanted - balloons, a banner and a pile of presents waiting for him when he woke up, and we all went to lunch and softplay. Simple, but lovely, and older DS would've loved that as his own birthday.

Would I be unreasonable to change DS' birthday to a couple of days later, say the 28th of December? We would be at home and all the Christmas presents would be unpacked/put away, everything would be open again so we could go to softplay/lunch/McDonald's/museum/whatever HE wants to do, and we would have control over the day with it being in our house so could make it special, no pressure on him.

OP posts:
mintich · 25/02/2020 13:33

I have a christmas day birthday and used to have my party in mid Dec so people were around to come.

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:33

Sorry for clarity - yes we would pretend his birthday was say the 28th of December, and not acknowledge it on his birthday. At least for the next few years, then when he's a bit older we can let him choose, but obviously highlight that nothing is open on Boxing Day.

I just feel rubbish that we can't make it special at all on his birthday, with us being at my parents' house, and him having literally just had a ridiculous amount of presents the day before.

My perception is a bit skewed perhaps as I don't have older children in school so haven't had to celebrate a child's birthday on a school day. But even then, I would at least put balloons up, a pile of presents for them to open, a special breakfast perhaps, before they go to school. Then after school they could have a friend for tea or whatever. It's still possible to do SOMETHING nice on any other day that's not Christmas Day or Boxing Day, I know most people don't have full parties on the actual day.

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ExpectTheWorst · 25/02/2020 13:34

But then surely the problem is not that it's his birthday, it's that Boxing Day is a shit day to be spent at your parents house as there's nothing to do and nowhere to go?

billybagpuss · 25/02/2020 13:34

I feel your pain, DD's birthday is New Years Day, she hates it.

I've had a couple of students over the years who had their birthdays on Christmas Day, the mum of one of them, right from birth, started to celebrate a half birthday on June 25th. Family just did token birthday gifts on the day itself then did normal birthday gifts in June. She sent out party invites to her friends to her 'half' birthday party and it meant she could have nice summer outdoor parties.

MotherofTerriers · 25/02/2020 13:34

My (now adult) DS has a boxing day birthday. It does get easier. When he was at school we had a half birthday party for him each year so that we could celebrate outdoors in summer, There are often sporting fixtures on Boxing day which he may choose to go to when he is older. And because it's a holiday day, he probably won't have to go to work on his birthday...….

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:35

expecttheworst nothing is open on Boxing Day? Excluding cinema etc which people have mentioned and we did think of in fairness. If he was really into films I would totally just make that his birthday tradition.

We live in a big city, full of loads of things to do for kids! Just not on Boxing Day, it's one of the few days a year when everything is closed, isn't it? I know all the softplay a, play centres, trampoline parks, swimming pools etc are.

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Lindy2 · 25/02/2020 13:36

My birthday is Christmas Eve. My mum always used to arrange my birthday party for a week before Christmas.

On my actual birthday we would then have a special family birthday tea and cake plus the presents from my immediate family.

I was always perfectly happy with that arrangement.

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:38

Motherofterriers sympathies! Yes and you are probably right, I just feel for the next few years it's going to be a bit shit. 1-3 was fine as he was so little, didn't really get it and was fine with being fussed over by my in laws (although DH and I still found it awkward every year as his parents are...interesting, and I felt uncomfortable that my parents were hosting and fussed round). I think from now for the next few years is going to be the worst, when he's much older he'll probably want to go to the pub or whatever too.

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pemberleypearl · 25/02/2020 13:38

I can't believe you are actually suggesting pretending to him that his birthday is on say, 28th December. Just do what pretty much everyone else has suggested and have a quiet day on his actual birthday if need be and then celebrate more fully on any other day of your choosing.

LetsSplashMummy · 25/02/2020 13:38

It doesn't look well thought through - how are you going to tell your parents that you're moving the day and they have to pretend as well, and not see him on his pretend birthday?

Christmas plans are more flexible than dates of birth. It sounds like you are doing just fine with the party earlier, which will be the bigger deal when he's at school.

BrieAndChilli · 25/02/2020 13:39

Ds1 birthday is a couple of days before christmas. we obviously celebrate on his actually birthday with some presents/cake etc but his party is always a couple of weeks before or after christmas.
Your DS is 4, to be honest its now going to be all about the party with friends for the next few years - and its rare for most people to have the parties on thier actual birthdays anyway due to school/work/other commitments.
So I would stick to family cake etc on his actual birthday, and then the birthday party wioth friends etc can be a couple of weeks later.

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:39

But a quiet day doing what? So he comes downstairs in the morning, oh happy birthday DS. We're doing sweet FA, which is still preferable to the alternative of hosting entitled in laws!

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BilboBercow · 25/02/2020 13:40

Op you keep saying nothing is open on Boxing day but it's really not true. Plenty if not almost all restaurants are open boxing day, the cinema is open and I'd imagine places like bowling are open too. I worked in the service industry for years and boxing day is one of the busiest of the year.
Of course you can't lie about your sons birthday to him. That's ridiculous.

implantsandaDyson · 25/02/2020 13:40

No you cant pretend his birthday is actually a different date - that's a level of batshittery beyond me. What you can do is celebrate it on a day that suits better - lots of people do that. My youngest is going to a party this weekend for a birthday that took place last summer. The child knows when it was actually born, for various reasons their having their party now.

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:40

Letssplashmummy my parents are all for it, they don't mind not seeing their grandchildren on their actual birthday - it's not a god given right. In laws seem to think so which is part of the problem really.

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Whoops75 · 25/02/2020 13:40

We have a little cake on the day if the birthday falls mon-fri
The main party is the on the nearest Sat or Sunday.

JRUIN · 25/02/2020 13:41

I don't really understand the drama. You're lucky inn one way in that your DS's birthday is in the school holidays, so you can celebrate it any day you like really can't you?

DrManhattan · 25/02/2020 13:41

Just celebrate on a different day?? Dont get the issue to be fair. This is all in your remit

MrsStrangerThing · 25/02/2020 13:43

How on earth are you going to convince your parents and inlaws to pretend it isn't his birthday? That is really weird. Just don't stay at your parents so you can celebrate at home without him becoming overwhelmed. Have Christmas at home this year, like lots of us do. I actually find it really odd that you would prefer to lie to him about his birthday than stay at home at xmas. I can see why he gets overwhelmed having to spend both xmas day and his birthday away from his own home.

ILikTheBred · 25/02/2020 13:43

Tbh the 28th isn’t much better. I have a DS with that birthday - it sucks as everyone is fed up of celebrations at that point, enthusiasm for even family celebrations is low and none of his friends are about. He had his party in mid January this year which was much better.

Just mark it on a different day - lying to him about is actual birth date is barmy.

tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:43

I don't think I'm making myself clear or maybe I'm misunderstanding.

I don't mean parties, I know a lot of the time parties are on a different day to the birthday. I mean anything whatsoever. Being stuck indoors (whether it's at my parents or our own house - which would naturally be slightly better) is rubbish to do on your birthday. Or to have your options limited - DS is still too young for bowling, cinema is the only feasible option but he wouldn't necessarily enjoy it. And what about presents, having double the amount of presents in two days but then nothing all year?

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tempnamechange98765 · 25/02/2020 13:45

ilikthebred honestly the 28th is much better. Everything is open so everything is an option. And if your DS wants a friend over for tea or something, you've got a better chance of people being available than on Boxing Day, when everyone is still with their families.

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MrsStrangerThing · 25/02/2020 13:45

Ah so inlaws are actually the problem. Unfortunately now that you have set the precedence of expecting your parents to host them, it will be very difficult to change that one.

cloudydaysinfebruary · 25/02/2020 13:48

Pretending his birthday is a different day sounds pretty strange to me. How would you explain that that to him when he's older?

Can't you just try to make his birthday as special as you can on his actual birthday and set a tradition that you have all the going out celebrations the following day.

I would try to make it into a huge positive that his birthday is Boxing Day because it makes it extra special and he will always have a birthday on a bank holiday so will have family around him all day. He will certainly never have to go to school on his birthday!

All sorts of birthdays have annoying things about them, one of my dc is on Valentine's Day which is kind of nice but also means their birthday will never be only about them.

dontgobaconmyheart · 25/02/2020 13:49

Absolutely bizarre to fully pretend to your DS that his birthday is a different day than it actually is. What convoluted and confusing nonsense Confused. His birthday is his birthday OP. Just do what everyone else does in the same boat and acknowledge it in a smaller way (give gifts on the day, cards and cake with candles) and then celebrate/have the big day out/arrange the party for a different date. It's just one of those things he is going to have to learn is one of those things. I

What city are you in? Genuinely baffled that you're saying everything is closed, the last two towns (not especially large) I've lived in have the cinema open on boxing day as well as most chain restaurants, mcdonalds etc. Most of the big shops open in the town centre as normal.

I saw Little Women on boxing day this year, which was it's release day so clearly they must be open all over.

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