Birthday Presents From Grandparents What Do You Think

7 Replies
cattac - October 7

Just wanted to get a general consensus of what you guys think about birthday presents from grandparents. My husband's parents have always given the grandkids tons of presents to the point where they probably give what the kids receive from the kid's parents, other family and friends...and then add those presents up and multiply by 2. Well my MIL wanted some suggestions for both boys. I emailed her a list of some things that would be nice for each child and asked her to please only get them 2-3 presents at the most (and some are pretty expensive). My husband and I are giving the kids enough- maybe 5-7 per child. Their bday is this month and christmas is just around the corner. I do NOT want to raised spoiled kids! I do not think this is you? My MIL thinks it's ridiculous and told my husband today she's already gotten them more and will give them more. I hate that she tries to outdo everyone else and I personally think 3 presents is plenty. What do you guys think about all this?


jb - October 8

I totally see your point of view. On the other hand, our parent's have been waiting for these grandchildren all their life! It is their job to 'spoil' them. Let them do it. It brings them joy to see the smiles on your kids faces. As for the presents, after they are opened and the novelty wears off, stash them in a closet somewhere and bring them out when the kids are 'bored' with the other toys. Also, depending on your kids ages....have them pick out an old toy that they don't use/want and have them donate that toy to a needy cause. In exchange for the donation, then your child can have one of the 'new' toys. Just a thought. Good luck....and don't be too hard on Grandma!!!


K - October 8

My Mom does the same thing, drives me nuts!! I wind up spending a lot of money so she doesn't outdo Santa. I've tried and tried to talk to her, but it doesn't do any good. It is also difficult because she always wants to buy at least one big showy or expensive item (in addition to a ton of smaller things), so we have to negotiate or fight about what comes from her and what comes from Santa. Seems like she always wants to buy the thing I want Santa to bring and to put her name on it, because she knows that item is what the little one will be most excited about . That is where I put my foot down and she usually agrees. My house looks like a toy store. My Mom actually gives my husband more than his own parents do for Christmas and his birthday. The best we could do was that we have an agreement with my Mom that we only exchange part of the gifts to each other or to the little one in front of my husband's parents, so they don't feel bad. We have our own private little party for the rest which we don't tell them about. She just goes nuts about holidays and there is no way to stop it. If your inlaws are anything like my Mom, there is not going to be anything you can do to stop it.


pbj - October 8

Believe me I understand your point, we've had similar issues. However, my niece was raised totally spoiled by my parents (she's 16 now), her mom and dad were never able to give her what grandma and grandpa do. She really does get that and has never really acted spoiled. When her mom or dad tell her "no" she's fine with it. We all know children do not play with half of what they're given, so maybe convey to you in laws that they're just wasting their money. Do they live far away? My parents do and tend to over compensate because of that and they have way less money than my husbands parents do. I think it's better for grandparents to spoil than parents. Unfortunately that's what grandparents do.


Ginny - October 8

Do we have the same MIL?? LOL! I was lucky to see that this was happening with my neices and nephews before I ever had kids, so I was a little more prepared. When MIL asks what dd would like for birthday or Christmas, I just tell her that she can buy them as much as she wants. I also supply dd's sizes without being asked and tell her if she is outgrowing any furniture and if she needs hairbows or toothbrushes or lightbulbs. . . I sort of even the playing field by overwhelming MIL first. Because she has so many choices, she ends up buying very well thought out gifts, instaed of just anything and everyuthing that pops into her head. Also, I've told her how wonderful her gifts are and it's a shame that Ava doesn't get to play with all of them because they can't all fit in her room. And I'm not being sarcastic - I know that her buying comes from a generous heart, and she really loves my dd.


cattac - October 8

Well at least I'm not alone in how I feel. Thanks for all your thoughts. My in laws do not live far...unless you think 3 miles is far! We moved away from my parents last year and not even my parents try to get them everything. I mean my MIL wants to get them EVERYTHING- no lie. I do think some of it is what you guys say...about living to have grandchildren and spoile them...however another part of it is that she wants to outdo everyone else. You may think I'm exaggerating but I'm not. She does use money and she equates money and material things with how much her grandchildren will like her. To give you an example of how she uses money (and this is just a small thing she's done) she offered to take me maternity shopping for a few things. She then found out we weren't going on an outing with them she wanted the entire family to be at so guess what...she just didn't show. It's a good thing my husband by a chance called and talked to her or I would have been there SOL. She had basically told me before we had talked about moving here that if my husband did not eventually come back to where we now live to work in his father's business she'd have no problem cutting him out of their will. She uses money.


cattac - October 8

I forgot to example of how she wants to get them everything...she told me (didn't ask just told me) that they are paying for our kids college tuition at their choice of college. It's nice that they would be that generous but I guess I would rather feel like she could maybe ask me sometimes rather than tell me how things will be because it seems like it's all about being in control with her.


cameron - October 11

I'm in the same boat with my MIL. We found out that she is in deep debt and really can't afford to spend the way she does. Every time we see her we end up fighting about her spending money on our LO. What should we do? Keep fighting or let her go deeper in debt?



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