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Should parent or stepparent help with presents? - Page 2

Poll Results: Who should help step-children make/buy presents for bio-parent?

  • 45% (18)
  • 10% (4)
    other bio-parent
  • 45% (18)
    depends on other circumstances
40 Total Votes  
post #21 of 28
Originally Posted by CaliMommie View Post
If I am reading this right you are the step-parent and her father is your SO? If that is the case why wouldn't you help her choose a gift for him?

The fact that you're upset about this speaks VOLUMES about how you feel about this poor child.

I agree with pp..........she asked you for help. So help her.
post #22 of 28
In my case, I am annoyed because DSD's mother is a charity case to my DSD. In a normal situation, I would gladly take her to buy a gift for her mom and her dad. She regularly informs us that her mother has no money and is broke. Her mother, who gave DH custody last summer, after my husband filed a motion for a legal change in custody so that we could relocate to Georgia from Michigan (although DH has had custody for all but 2 weeks since there divorce more than 3 years ago). The mother does not support the daughter financially at all, despite a prior agreement with DH. She just doesn't know how to be a parent or a responsible person. I get hung up on this issue, and I resent spending money on the mother. It takes a lot of sacrifices on everyone's part to raise this child. I gladly do for DSD but it is not my responsibility to do for the mother.

I also get annoyed because DSD wants to buy a gift for her mother only, but not for anyone else including her father or me. Now, her mother is not rich, but she does work full-time and has few expenses. She chooses to spend her money on drugs and alcohol, rather than her child. I feel used in some way, and that's what bothers me. I try not to let this resentment cloud my perspective, but I am only human.
post #23 of 28
Wow -- I'm not sure I understand why the request would bother you. I'm totally the opposite -- I get annoyed if my DH's ex takes the kids to buy presents for him, as I see that as my role. (Actually, the reason I got annoyed is more complicated -- one time I told her I'd do it -- this was for his birthday -- but she did it anyway, in some weird turf war or something -- told me I had "no role" with the kids.. long story)

This year I took both stepkids to buy presents for their dad and each other. My husband took them to buy presents for me. Since their mom has no partner, we offered to take them to get something for their mom, but they didn't want to -- said they'd be making something at school, so we didn't push.

I think is your stepdaughter wants you to take her shopping, that's a GOOD thing! Take her out and it'll be a nice bonding experience. Have fun!
post #24 of 28
I think if you stop looking at it as doing a favor for her mother, and start doing at it as something that makes a child you love happy, then it should overpower the resentment. *hugs*

DSD did not get me a present for this Christmas, but she is SO proud that she spent her own money today to get gifts for her mom, dad and siblings. Guess who took her out shopping? And we all had good time. I also want to add, that even if I have a few issues with her mom, we set them aside for the holidays, and just finished wrapping gifts, eight of them go to the "other side" Christmas morning when we pick up DSD. And there was a bit of thought involved into what to get for her siblings as well as her mom and stepdad. It makes DSD happy, and makes her see things in a different light. Hope you can look at the situation in that way: would it put as smile on a child's face? Then what else matters!
post #25 of 28
I don't think there is a RIGHT way here. I think it depends on the relationships involved.

Also, I don't think it is wise to assume why she asked. Kids do things for their own reasons. Maybe there has been a little tension between mom and dad and the child has picked up on it. Maybe she thinks you pick better gifts! Maybe she was reaching for a sense of family with you. Maybe mom did tell her to go to you. Maybe a little bit of any number of the above and dozens of reasons that I can't imagine.

Bottomline, I think the only rule there should be is that if a child asks for help, you give it to her. That doesn't mean you automatically open your wallet or do jump to do what they asked. But I do think you find a way to help the child with whatever they are stuggling with. Even if it is just to help her talk it through until she figures out what she should be doing.
post #26 of 28
I think it really depends on the situation. I help SS buy a present for DH. DH helps all my kids (including SS) buy gifts for me.

I took SS10 shopping for his BM for the first time this year. When DH and I married, I asked DH about getting a xmas gift for BM and he thought I was crazy. My divorced parents always helped me with presents for the other so I thought that was the "norm". This year I asked SS if his SF helped him buy a gift for BM. The answer was no. SS was THRILLED to pick out something small to give his mother.
post #27 of 28
Right now you are the one in a loving and caring relationship with the parent that your DSD wants to buy a present for and therefore you are the best person to help this child to select a truly meaningful present. why would this be in question?
post #28 of 28
Originally Posted by jjawm View Post
And I'm his wife. It's a strange concept to me, that his ex would be responsible for helping get a gift for him rather than me.
I was responding specifically to the question of why the ex would care to help their child buy a gift for the other parent. Just because they're no longer together doesn't necessarily mean that all caring stops.

The way I look at it, he's their Dad. I don't love him, nor to I particularly like him. But he is a part of the two people I love more than life itself. And if it is important to them, it's important to me.

Does it peeve me to help them buy gifts for their stepMom and her kids? Sometimes. But again, it's important to the kids, so it's important to me.
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