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How do you Handle Gift-Giving?

mommylove's picture

How does the gift-giving work with SKs? I mean specifically for those of you who contribute some sort of income to your HH (i.e. Job Salary, CS, SS, Disability, Retirement, Unemployment, Alimony, Investment or Trust Income, etc.), do you actually buy SKs gifts yourself, do you and your SO pool your income and buy SKs gifts together, or does your SO pay for their child('s/ren's) gifts solely from their own income? If SO pays for gift solely, do you still present gifts to SKs as being from both of you or the family, or just from SO/BP?

Do you ever buy gifts for SO FOR the SKs? If you buy gifts for SO FOR SKs, is the gift presented as being from SKs only or from all of you? If you have children with your SO, do you ever buy gifts for your SO from your children or you and your children ONLY? Do you ever buy gifts and present them as from all of the children together (S & BKs) or from the "family" together including you for H or you and H for others? Does BP ever buy gifts for SO from BKs or from both BKs AND BP? How do you feel about BP buying gifts for SO, especially if they sign the card or otherwise present the gift as being from them as well or solely?

I'm not asking this for any reason other than out of curiosity based on a couple other threads and posts I've read here recently.

In my case I usually buy gifts for my SKs that are only from me or me & my kids (their siblings) because I already know H will be getting his kids something from him only too. Actually I don't think H & I have ever bought any of the kids (including ours) anything "together", but then we have separate finances/don't pool our finances. I have, however, bought gifts for other people and signed the card from our family and included everyone's name, even SKs (i.e. my niece had a birthday party recently and we all went, including H & SD, so even though I bought the present and card I signed it and presented it to be from all of us.) BM has bought H gifts for SD and has even expressed her own personal greetings on ocassion (i.e. "thanks for being a good Dad" on Father's Day), but I'm not bothered by this in the least.

Persephone's picture

We pick out together, or at least discuss the gift and whoever has time picks up. Cards are signed jointly. We do buy family gifts.

When they were younger--BM would take SKIDS shopping. That stopped after she bought DH a comforter bed set and lamp for our bedroom. Nice. It was a fishing theme. I am chuckling to myself as I type this.... I was so pizzed at the time. Anywhoo, after that the kids made gifts and cards--explaining that those from the heart are much more meaningful.

My kids have always done gifts on their own for their father, DH, me,grandparents, etc.

Moon Child Step Mom's picture

I come from a very “celebration” minded family… we’re an overly “gifting” kinda bunch, the kind who give all the neighbors cookies and cards at Christmas and if we even get a hint about someone’s birthday they’re gonna have a balloon and something to open. Mothers and fathers days are a nightmare… I send anyone in my life who is a mum or a dad a card and spoil my parents and god parents silly!!!

This I got from my mother who got it from her mother etc…

DH and I are a united front, the same person. We have yours mine and ours bank accounts (“Ours” for the bills and savings, his for his whisky and cigars, mine for my manicures and lunches out!) but ultimately it’s “our” money, “our” gifts to people… and especially, “our” gifts to the kids. We shop together for the kids, and everybody else in our lives… if we get something especially nice “From Daddy” or “From Moon” to give one of them it’s just a little lovie something from the heart, but birthdays and holidays it’s definitely “From Daddy & Moon”. United.

Same with in-laws and friends… they’re “our” family, “our” friends…

I will admit that I’m the one in the house pushing DH to get Mother Russia gifts from the boys. Again, my mother made sure until I was old enough to get my father (her ex-husband) gifs on my own, she would buy me things to give him “from me” on birthdays and holidays. It teaches kids to be giving while maintaining the bond between parent and child. I buy the skids gifts to give their mom “from them” and usually I toss in a little something from me as well… usually some sort of gag gift. (DH gets ticked that I do this but he’s starting to learn it’s just the kind of person I am)

Tx mommy of 3's picture

Well we are a one income family so dh pays for everything! Ha ha! For birthday ss gets one gift. Not because he's a ss but poor kid's bday is right before Christmas. Then of course we get him presents for Christmas. We spend the same on ss as we do on our bio kids. Ss's gifts are from both of us. On ocaasion one gift might be from biokids (ss's half-sibs). But now that ss is almost seem to be more in the form of gift cards or money. When I do go back to work I imagine we'll do the same thing only we'll have more money!

Yes, I do purchase dh gifts from biokids. Ss hasn't been around much for holidays the last few years. I used to take him Christmas shopping and let him pick out something for dh and somehing small for his mom. (one year it was an ornament.) one year for Father's Day I got pics done of ss and dd. I don't do any of that anymore, except with our biokids. I also used to take ss to get something small for his mom on certain holidays but that has stopped too. Dh never liked it then anyway. If bm were to send dh a card or gift I would crack up!!! It would have to be a bomb or something! Ha! No, it would never happen. I don't think I'd be jealous either but prob because I know it would never happen. Of course dh and bm were never married either. (bm got pg in high school)

starfish's picture

i do all the gift buying for everyone (skids, mil, sil, niece, etc)~~ (kinda for myself, too ~~ i tell dh what i want, where it is, etc.. and he gets it for me...) he does super surprise me sometimes, but that's not his thing, so i only hold him responsible for getting my card..

as far as gifts for the skids, lately it has just been money or gift card, takes that sting out of ZERO appreciation... i may buy some cheap toy/candy for ss and lip gloss/cand for sd to go with money, but that's it..

disneymom78's picture

We buy the SKs gifts and we both decide on how much and what to get. However, the gifts stay at our place. Only becuase we know when they come back the toys/colthes/games won't. They need to have their own stuff that is theirs here to feel like home.

hismineandours's picture

In the past, we bought our his, mine, and ours bunch gifts together or I did it alone but with his input. Then several years in a row-he had a some sort of fit as were wrapping xmas presents because he felt that ss was being shortchanged somehow compared to the other kids. This year I vowed that I would leave gift giving at xmas to dh for ss and I told him well in advance of this and he was ok. He bought him one thing. A bike. Now we typically try and get the kids one big gift and then probably 4 or 5 smaller ones. I felt bad for ss and went out on the 23rd and bought the bugger some additional gifts. I buy father's day gifts from the kids (my kids) and I dont sign ss's name. SS gets him nothing. This year I dont even think he told him happy father's day. I bought a big gift for him, but then all 3 of my kids went and picked out something on their own and bought it for him. SS doesnt buy dh bday gifts or xmas gifts. The kids, if they have no money, will at least make him a card.

Kes's picture

I used to put some thought into buying my SDs birthday and Xmas presents, however, their gift to me (if I got anything at all)looked as though it had either been bought in a £1 shop or had been found lurking in the back of the BMs kitchen cabinet. After a few years of this I got fed up, and now I usually go in with my DH, ie give him some money towards their presents. A couple of years ago I made a point of not getting SD14 anything at all, because I disagreed with what DH and BM were giving for her birthday, ie BM a £500 camera, and DH a trip to Alton Towers (UK version of Disneyworld) for herself and about 10 friends, which cost a bloody fortune.
If I do get them presents, its usually something quite modest, such as a pair of pyjamas, because I consider them to be hideously spoiled already.