U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Parenting
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
 
 
Old 12-27-2019, 04:56 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
18,000 posts, read 18,431,888 times
Reputation: 44743

Advertisements

I think that this behavior often starts in childhood. I am relatives with several families with young children. In one family from the very beginning everyone exchanged gifts ---even if it meant that Daddy and baby/toddler/preschooler picked out a gift together for "child to give to Mommy". Or the young child makes a present or draws a picture as gifts. The children are now in their young teens and actively select and choose their own presents to give to their sibling, parents and grandparents. In some ways they are just as excited to find, wrap and give those presents as to receive presents. They also donate things to child friendly charities (such as for the hat & mitten tree).

In another family, The grandparents, aunts, uncles and parents go overboard giving several hundred dollars worth of presents to each child. But the children have never been expected to give gifts to anyone else. Unless the classroom teacher had the child make a gift or ornament for Mom and Dad they were always empty handed and just expected more and more and more gifts from others.

Personally, I think that the first method works better in the long run.
Quick reply to this message

 
Old 12-27-2019, 05:00 PM
 
1,318 posts, read 977,923 times
Reputation: 2864
Your issue shouldn’t be with your stepson, it should be with the people who raised him. Why are you not cursing out your husband about this? Why not his mom? It’s up to them to rectify their mistake, not you.

That being said, if the gifts are only being given with the expectation of reciprocation, you probably ought to stop buying him gifts. That’s not supposed to be why you give a gift to someone.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 05:46 PM
Status: "Deep and Dark December" (set 5 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
88,545 posts, read 104,871,472 times
Reputation: 34097
Quote:
Originally Posted by germaine2626 View Post
I think that this behavior often starts in childhood. I am relatives with several families with young children. In one family from the very beginning everyone exchanged gifts ---even if it meant that Daddy and baby/toddler/preschooler picked out a gift together for "child to give to Mommy". Or the young child makes a present or draws a picture as gifts. The children are now in their young teens and actively select and choose their own presents to give to their sibling, parents and grandparents. In some ways they are just as excited to find, wrap and give those presents as to receive presents. They also donate things to child friendly charities (such as for the hat & mitten tree).

In another family, The grandparents, aunts, uncles and parents go overboard giving several hundred dollars worth of presents to each child. But the children have never been expected to give gifts to anyone else. Unless the classroom teacher had the child make a gift or ornament for Mom and Dad they were always empty handed and just expected more and more and more gifts from others.

Personally, I think that the first method works better in the long run.
Now that you mention it, one year when my brother and I were maybe 10 and 11 or so, my mom said that everyone had to get everyone else a "stocking present". In our family, these were little gifts, maybe a bit silly (but not "gag" gifts) such as a cutesy pair of socks, a T-shirt of a favorite sports team, little tools, etc. It worked out well. Bro and I had a good time going shopping! That became a tradition.

My own kids loved donating to the "mitten tree" which was more than just mittens.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 06:04 PM
 
14,823 posts, read 7,454,212 times
Reputation: 14326
I think you personally should not buy him gifts anymore. You can't do anything about his Dad and his grandparents.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 06:20 PM
 
13,161 posts, read 8,058,281 times
Reputation: 25360
Quote:
Originally Posted by phonelady61 View Post
it seems like it is this generation who it seems does not understand the concept of giving and getting .
Seems like an issue with whoever raised them. My sister and I are slightly older then the OP's stepson, and my brother is slightly younger. We all bring gifts to Christmas for everyone, because that is how we were raised. Even growing up our parents would take us out shopping to buy small gifts for everyone. We'd get gifts for our parents, grandparents, siblings, and cousins. As we got older, we took on the responsibility of getting the presents ourselves. The next generation is being raised the same.

If someone wasn't raised with the expectation of getting gifts for others, it seems it would be harder to switch over to that mentality. They're used to receiving presents, but was never expected to give.

Same with helping out with holiday meals. Growing up, I always helped my mom in the kitchen, so as an adult I always wanted to contribute a dessert or something to the meal. My siblings were not as helpful in the kitchen, so a few weeks before a holiday meal my mom will send a group text asking everyone what they are contributing to the meal. That way there is more of an expectation that everyone will contribute. And with clean up, we're just assigned jobs as we're finishing up eating. "Can you bring me the dishes from the table, you can start packing up the leftovers, you collect the linens, you help dry the dishes, etc..."
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 06:25 PM
 
Location: Washington State
260 posts, read 149,396 times
Reputation: 760
It does show a lack of courtesy for the family tradition, but it is still that; a courtesy.

He's not obligated to give gifts anymore than you are.

I help with the dinner table and show as much gratefulness for my gifts as I can, but, I too have never purchased gifts for family. It stresses me out and I don't know what to give. Fortunately as an adult I know that I have no obligation to subject myself to that stress. So I don't.

I've made it clear that I expect nothing because I give nothing. But when I do receive something, I try to reciprocate with work or abundant thanks.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 06:46 PM
 
Location: Wonderland
47,905 posts, read 38,530,323 times
Reputation: 68526
Sigh.

I don't think the OP is giving gifts expecting something back in return and that's the reason she's giving a gift.

I don't think her irritation has anything to do with not getting a present because doggonit she wants a present.

I don't think she's out of line to be irritated in fact.

I also don't think she can win this showdown. That being said, I do believe she has the right to share her opinion with her husband, and possibly with her step son - IN PRIVATE. And that's all. That's about all she can do.

Of course, if the presents were a matter of breaking the bank financially or whatever, she would have even more of a right to say something but that doesn't seem to be the issue.

The issue seems to me to be that the step son is acting like an entitled child at age 26 and that his family is enabling him and this is what irritates the OP, who has every right to be irritated by this display in my opinion. But like I said, her options are limited. Damned if she does and damned if she doesn't at this point.

My advice would be to diplomatically state her opinion to her husband in private. And perhaps even diplomatically but firmly state her opinion - IN PRIVATE - to the step son, who God knows is a grown ass man and should be able to listen to her respectfully - she and his father have been married since he was a teenager for goodness sake. Don't say anything to anyone else and if someone else brings it up just smile and say, "I get what you're saying. His dad and I have discussed this," or something like that but NO GROUSING.

It's very irritating to watch an adult child behave like a child, and a disrespectful one at that.

By the way, I want to address another point people keep bringing up - upbringing, and the idea that if he hadn't been raised that way, he wouldn't act that way - he'd buy presents if he'd been raised to do so. I am sorry, but I beg to differ. My brother and I were raised by the same parents, in the same house and we were both raised to enjoy giving to others, to mark holidays and birthdays and all that with AT LEAST a call, and preferably more than that. I've always done so, and taught my four kids to do so, and get this - my brother simply doesn't do it. So I quit doing it with him - I quit wishing him a happy birthday, and I quit buying him presents. Now - I do call him on Christmas but that's it.

Out of my four kids, one of them doesn't send cards or gifts - but he DOES call on birthdays and holidays, and he does live overseas, and he has always been terrible when it comes to mail. He's in his thirties. I do send him a small gift for his birthday and for Christmas but that's because he's my son and I enjoy giving him things, he does call to say thank you, and he does call in general - in fact, I talk with him several times a week. But my point is that he was raised the same as the other kids, and they give gifts, mail cards, etc. and he doesn't. I don't know why. Oh well. Oh but one other thing - in person, he DOES exchange presents and they are well though out, personal presents, which is nice too. He just does not mail things.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 07:01 PM
 
Location: planet earth
6,029 posts, read 2,365,100 times
Reputation: 13485
Givers and takers.

The takers take the joy out of many things, and should not be enabled.

I feel it was rude to "out" him - AND I also think he is a mannerless ingrate.

I would announce new rules for gift giving - a "white elephant" game or drawing names out of a hat.

It's unfortunate that this young MAN has to be trained (to be civil, basically) at this point.

It would be cool if we could really tell people how we feel about their behaviors, but that usually does not go well and would put you in the mannerless camp if you were to pursue it.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 07:03 PM
 
6,084 posts, read 2,688,567 times
Reputation: 16937
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lbjen View Post
Your issue shouldn’t be with your stepson, it should be with the people who raised him. Why are you not cursing out your husband about this? Why not his mom? It’s up to them to rectify their mistake, not you.

That being said, if the gifts are only being given with the expectation of reciprocation, you probably ought to stop buying him gifts. That’s not supposed to be why you give a gift to someone.
This.
Quick reply to this message
 
Old 12-27-2019, 07:04 PM
 
Location: Santa Monica, Ca
7,914 posts, read 4,346,557 times
Reputation: 19426
Sounds like his “parents” didn’t instill many values while raising him.
Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


 

Quick Reply
Message:
Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Parenting
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2020, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top