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AIBU over boyfriends birthday?

213 replies

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 21:40

My boyfriend and I are together a year next month so this year was our first valentines and birthdays.

We returned from holiday early last week and his birthday was last Sunday. Prior to the holiday, he told me to save my money and wait until we were home and settled before buying any presents. Now I know I didn’t mishear him because he said it more than once.

He said that he expects me to spend a minimum of £200 on him because that was his budget and specifically requested an outdoor pop-up tent and JBL speaker equating to the budget.

Based on boyfriends advice, this would mean anything I order wouldn’t arrive on time for the Sunday.

I literally started a new job where I am paid monthly and after the holiday and paying other bills, I have £30 to do me until payday and my boyfriend is completely aware of this. Sunday came and he was incredibly disappointed there were no gifts (I did bring him to the beach and paid for dinner). 

I would never expect him to take care of me financially but despite knowing how strapped I am until payday, he hasn’t offered to pay for anything and instead keeps making jokes about how poor I am. He even tried to give me £5 as a joke so I couldn’t say he ‘wasn’t a good boyfriend who didn’t get me anything’…

Here’s my issue. My birthday was in June and without sounding materialistic I was incredibly disappointed with my presents and know my boyfriend completely cheaped out yet set a minimum budget for his presents.

He bought me a pair of Crocs (in the wrong size), Yankee Candles (Christmas scents), and a reed diffuser. On top of this, we went for a meal tasting (8 courses) that was £80 per person (in total £160) and my boyfriend is including the total £160 toward the money he spent on me. Now, when I take anyone out for dinner, I only factor in their portion towards total cost and completely ignore my own because that’s money I spent on myself and not them. Isn’t this normal?

Before anyone presumes I went googling the prices… My boyfriend left the delivery slips in the bags (presents weren’t wrapped and they were handed to me in packaging they arrived in) and a lot of the items were heavily discounted compared to their normal retail price. 

I know it’s not what a person spends but the thought that counts, but when I tally what my boyfriend spent it was roughly £130! 


OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

591 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
SloppyJays · 13/09/2023 21:44

Anyone who told me what they expected me to spend on them would soon be an ex.

ItsADoggieDogWorld · 13/09/2023 21:46

This sounds like a vey transactional relationship. He sounds dreadful. I'd be thinking seriously about dumping his arse and packing the crocs off with him.

Foggyfoggyfoggy · 13/09/2023 21:46

Second hand tent and he can go live in it... Ltb and don't look back op.

vodkaredbullgirl · 13/09/2023 21:47

It's the thought that counts, not the £££££ signs.

LittleOwl153 · 13/09/2023 21:48

Well I.hope you haven't ordered a pop up tent or his demanded speaker...

You need to set your own budgets within your own means for buying presents along with everything else. Do not be pushed into overspending to please him.

Assuming you can afford it then the trip out needs to come of his 'budget' - all of it your costs too and don't forget the petrol/transport. He won't like that!

But tbh, this one does not sound like a keeper... toss him back and see who else is out there!

EVHead · 13/09/2023 21:50

You are fucking joking with this! Who does he think he is? YABU if you go along with this nonsense.

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 21:50

I absolutely love gift-giving and it is my love language. Boyfriend is aware of this and also how guilty I feel for not having his presents on time, which is completely unlike me! I really didn’t expect to leave my new job so sudden and transition to this one where I’d have five weeks apart from when I was last paid (bimonthly in my last job).

I’ll sporadically send friends and the boyfriend £5 to get a midweek coffee and I’ve often made little gift packs for my boyfriend during our relationship as little pick me ups. I’m far from cheap and don’t ever expect the same back as I know gift giving isn’t everyone’s love language or within their capacity, but being set a budget while knowing my boyfriend purposely cheaped out struck a chord!

OP posts:
BrawnWild · 13/09/2023 21:51

What are you hoping for from him in 5 years time?

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 21:51

Neither are ordered yet, my £30 wouldn’t cover it haha and I don’t want to finance the items or reach into my rainy day savings.

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didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 21:54

I’ve honestly never given any thought to this as I don’t even know what I expect from myself in 5 years time. At the moment life is a bit chaotic with the job transition that I haven’t had a minutes peace to unwind from the holiday.

I couldn’t tell you if I want kids or marriage within the next 5 years or at all because it seems very far out of reach.

This year has very much been living in the moment and taking each day as it comes.

Something I’ll need to sit down and work out!

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youtwoandme · 13/09/2023 21:57

You both sound very young.

Why are you letting him call you poor and tease you? Why haven't you reminded him about buying his gifts later? Why haven't you walked out the door the minute he started demanding gifts within an expected price range?

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 22:01

I’m 24 and he turned 30 on Sunday so there is a minor age gap.

It only started this evening when I emphasised I was poor (at the moment) with £30 to do me until the 25th. I did remind him on Sunday about the presents, expressed I felt bad, and apologized and he reassured me that it was okay but he still felt a little dissapointed. I know, I probably should’ve set a boundary there and then and said that I wouldn’t be in a position to spend that much but I have a tendency to go overboard with gifts (I typically can afford to) and wanted to get him what he wanted.

OP posts:
Servalan · 13/09/2023 22:04

Who the fuck sets a minimum budget for the presents they should receive. How would that conversation even go?!

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 22:10

“What do you want for your birthday”

”What’s your budget?”

”It depends on what you want.”

”Well I spent about £150-200 on you so I’d expect the same.”

”Ok” - I knew he cheaped out, probably eye rolled here.

”It’s probably the most I spent on such a new girlfriend”

Basically word for word

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LookingWest · 13/09/2023 22:10

God he sounds awful, get a better one!

Mummumgem · 13/09/2023 22:10

I’m sorry, but if you were my daughter I would be telling you to think very very carefully about how you want this to continue.

I gave you a budget for his present, I’m speechless,

I don’t know what else to say, and that’s rare for me !

Zanatdy · 13/09/2023 22:13

Can’t believe someone has the cheek to tell someone else what the minimum spend for their bday is. Especially when they didn’t spend anywhere near that amount. Rude

SD1978 · 13/09/2023 22:14

He's a dick. He didn't spend £200 on your birthday, he spent £40 on shit you didn't like, and a meal that he probably wanted to have more than you did, I would be sounding no more than £40-£50 and I wouldn't have asked him for a budget.

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 22:15

I didn’t! He told me what he spent and said he expected the same

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VickyEadieofThigh · 13/09/2023 22:15

SloppyJays · 13/09/2023 21:44

Anyone who told me what they expected me to spend on them would soon be an ex.

Absolutely. I've genuinely never heard anything quite like it!

Whataretheodds · 13/09/2023 22:17

He said that he expects me to spend a minimum of £200 on him

I thought you said he was 30, not 13.

This kind of shit would make my legs clamp shut.

thecatinthetwat · 13/09/2023 22:19

He’s trying to trick/guilt you into spending more. Plus 200 is way too much and you can’t afford it. He spent less on you but is fiddling the numbers. He’s not a guy to stay with.

fedupnow2 · 13/09/2023 22:20

SloppyJays · 13/09/2023 21:44

Anyone who told me what they expected me to spend on them would soon be an ex.

This. Please raise your standards. This joke of an idiot is not worth your time.

ZenNudist · 13/09/2023 22:21

It's very tempting to say ditch him.

You are maybe a bit too passive because you could have called his £150 to £200 comment immediately and said that you don't have that kind of money, plus he seems to be misremembering a £50 gift and treating you to an £80 tasting menu (did you want this?) As being £200 gift.

You've let it go a bit too long now but if the relationship is to have a future talk to him.

You don't seem like you're on the same page financially.

didntgetagift · 13/09/2023 22:22

I have considered financing the items on Very and paying back immediately when paid so there’d be no interest applied but it comes to over £200 for the speaker and pop-up tent. Even if I did this, they wouldn’t come for another week or two.

I already told him I probably won’t meet him this week as I have no money and he said that we could have a weekend of “free fun” but I’d feel so restricted not having funds to get a coffee or lunch as I pleased and be relying on him.

I know I’m probably going to avoid him until I’m paid again and have his presents to avoid feeling guilty or bad.

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