Have you been asked to bring a gift for the birthday child's sibling? - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-04-2010, 12:05 PM
 
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What about giving the older sib a *gift certificate* to come to your house and bake cookies, or go to the zoo with your family, or something else like that (something that would be fun for you and your kids and out of the norm for the other child).

I feel that the mom is really, really out of line, but if this is a family member that you are stuck dealing with, coming up with a solution that keeps the peace would be nice.

Make love, not war.

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Old 06-04-2010, 12:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
What about giving the older sib a *gift certificate* to come to your house and bake cookies, or go to the zoo with your family, or something else like that (something that would be fun for you and your kids and out of the norm for the other child).

I feel that the mom is really, really out of line, but if this is a family member that you are stuck dealing with, coming up with a solution that keeps the peace would be nice.

Make love, not war.
Yes, OP. Since there's pretty universal agreeement that the request for a gift is rude, I am curious how you will handle it. Do you mind sharing, if it's not too invasive to ask? If you don't want to answer, I understand completely.
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Old 06-04-2010, 12:23 PM
 
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I see you´ve had plenty of responses - and I haven´t read them all - but when I saw the OP, I just couldn´t believe it.

It is a tacky request and I feel badly for this woman who has gotten to the point where she thinks it´s acceptable to put the responsibility on other people to make her child "feel better" and therefore, make her life a little easier for a few hours (maybe).

That is not a good scenario and the older sibling needs to learn how to work through his/her feelings around not being the center of attention all the time (the family needs to learn how to work through it, too) - particularly if the older child just celebrated a birthday and received plenty of gifts - did the mother ask everyone to bring a gift for the baby, too? so the older child would see the baby wasn´t feeling left out? I doubt it.

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Old 06-04-2010, 01:34 PM
 
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I have never heard of that kind of request and I wouldn't honor it. I did bring something for an older sibling when his family had a celebration of their new child's birth, but that was a personal choice and not something that anyone was asked to do.
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Old 06-04-2010, 01:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
What about giving the older sib a *gift certificate* to come to your house and bake cookies, or go to the zoo with your family, or something else like that (something that would be fun for you and your kids and out of the norm for the other child).

I feel that the mom is really, really out of line, but if this is a family member that you are stuck dealing with, coming up with a solution that keeps the peace would be nice.

Make love, not war.
I think this is a great idea. I agree that the request was rude, but if the older child is having a hard time and the parents aren't dealing well with it, I would want to help.
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Old 06-04-2010, 04:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, OP. Since there's pretty universal agreeement that the request for a gift is rude, I am curious how you will handle it. Do you mind sharing, if it's not too invasive to ask? If you don't want to answer, I understand completely.
I don't mind you asking at all. I plan on just giving the gift to the birthday girl. I think Linda on the move's suggestion was great (thank you) but I don't think I am going to do it because I feel like giving her something at the birthday party is aiding and abetting (couldn't think of another phrase to use) the poor way her parents are dealing with the issues she's having with her younger sister.

I'd give her the certificate a few days later.
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Old 06-04-2010, 05:36 PM
 
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If I were in the OP's shoes, I would buy the older sister a card and write her a nice note about how even though being a big sister is tough, she's doing a great job (even if I didn't think it was totally true). I would spend a little time with the child during the party to read it with her and maybe talk about how she feels about being a big sister- try to appreciate her point of view. I might even offer the parents to stop by sometime and take the big sister to the park or something so she can spend some time away from her sibling. I think that would be more meaningful to a young child than a present which will get lost in the shuffle of her sister's party.

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Old 06-04-2010, 10:15 PM
 
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We generally give the older sibling a gift when a baby is born. Usually something they can do quietly while mom nurses OR something matching with the baby (like matching fleece jackets, matching hats or matching pajamas).

In the case you are describing, I would probably decide based on how close I was to the family. If it was a close friend or family member I might consider getting the older child a book that they could read to the baby (like a board book with a note) OR something they could use together/were matching (matching hair bows, socks, something tiny). If it was a more random person I'd either just bring one gift or not even go

If I was really close to the person, though, I would definately say something about there being other ways to deal with the issue. When DS turned one (so DD was 3.5) we made it so she was the only kid who could help him open his gifts (except the person who had given him the gift if he wanted). But we've always made *giving* a gift a really big deal (the kids' favorite part of Christmas is often "being Santa" and handing out the presents ).

 

 

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Old 06-07-2010, 07:12 AM
 
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No I have never been asked and I wouldn't do it either. I find it a bit rude. I think its fine if the mom wants to give the older kid a gift but I don't think everyone else should have to buy 2 gifts, especially if she just had a birthday.

we never had friend bday parties. But me and my younger sis (she is 3years younger) always had to give the other one a present on our birthday. Our birthday are 2 weeks apart. I never understood why I had to give her something or why she had to give me something. I imagine it was well intentioned. But I personally feel that your bday is your day to be celebrated.

Older kids get a gift when a baby is born in our house. But thats it.

Mamma to dd1 3/8/07, one 9.5.08, and dd2 9/9/09
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:42 AM
 
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Originally Posted by annie2186 View Post
As a mom I would never ask that - I would be to embarrassed!
when cameron was born i bought chloe a baby doll , i bought chloe, cameron and caitlin all a small gift when cadet was born and i have once let caitlin choose gifts for chloe and cameron when it was her birthday, but i'd never ask on an invitation for gifts to be bought for older siblings, thats just rude imo.

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Old 06-07-2010, 08:54 AM
 
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Yeah, not appropriate! This reminds of a story about a family friend in a similar situation - oldest dd didn't adjust well with arrival of younger ds, and on the baby's first birthday, they apparently sang "Happy birthday to dd's little brother, happy birthday to you!" instead of singing happy birthday with the little boy's name. Nice, huh?
Holy crap!




As for the OP, I'll often of my own accord bring a gift for an older sibling when I visit right after the birth. But to ask on an invitation, a year after the birth? HA!

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Old 06-07-2010, 12:38 PM
 
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I have a friend who it wouldn't surprise me if she did this. Her daughter is a little over 2 years older than her son and when the baby started playing with toys, she actually went out to buy new baby toys because the daughter wanted them since they were hers. They also bought a new highchair for the same reason.

A friend of mines growing up was the oldest of four and there was a pretty large gap between her and her next closest sibling (6 years.) Her parents would give the other kids candy bars on the birthday child's birthday. I pretty much lived there, so they'd also give me a candy bar if I was having dinner with them that night. But, they NEVER asked other parents to bring something for the other kids! That's just rude!

I'm just starting "Siblings without Rivalry" and I think it would be a great present for the parents.

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Old 06-07-2010, 12:53 PM
 
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I think it is crazy bizarre to ask for a sibling gift right on the invite. However, I have done it on my own--brought a sibling gift on the younger child's first birthday. I think it can be confusing for the little ones when their sibling has a birthday for the first time, even when there is normally no rivalry. I have brought something little (less than $5) and given it to them, saying thank you to them for being such a great big brother/big sister this past year.

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Old 06-07-2010, 01:21 PM
 
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I am not averse to giving the older child a gift at a younger sibling's birthday. The parents should have just done one big joint party in between the two birthdays if they are only a month apart. I'd have happily gotten the older sibling a gift except for having gotten her one a month before.

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Old 06-07-2010, 01:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by gbailey View Post
I don't mind you asking at all. I plan on just giving the gift to the birthday girl. I think Linda on the move's suggestion was great (thank you) but I don't think I am going to do it because I feel like giving her something at the birthday party is aiding and abetting (couldn't think of another phrase to use) the poor way her parents are dealing with the issues she's having with her younger sister.

I'd give her the certificate a few days later.
Thanks for sharing. I think it's one thing for all of us to talk about the parent's request and how to handle it - an entirely different, very difficult thing to have to actually deal with sensitive family members. Best wishes with it - and also to those 2 sisters.

I also like the idea of letting the parents know about Siblings Without Rivalry. Perhaps not as a gift at the party, but maybe as a suggestion if they start talking about the older sister's problems adjusting to her sister ("Hey, there's a really good book on the subject. It's very helpful...."
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for sharing. I think it's one thing for all of us to talk about the parent's request and how to handle it - an entirely different, very difficult thing to have to actually deal with sensitive family members. Best wishes with it - and also to those 2 sisters.

I also like the idea of letting the parents know about Siblings Without Rivalry. Perhaps not as a gift at the party, but maybe as a suggestion if they start talking about the older sister's problems adjusting to her sister ("Hey, there's a really good book on the subject. It's very helpful...."
Thank you! I've decided to do a variation of Linda on the Move's suggestion. Instead of giving the older child a coupon for a day to hang out I'm going to make up one for the mom. I'll take the youngest for a day or a few hours (their choice) and maybe they can spend some time with the older child alone.

I also like your gentle approach to mentioning the sibling book. I'll do it after the party.
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Old 06-11-2010, 10:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a friend who it wouldn't surprise me if she did this. Her daughter is a little over 2 years older than her son and when the baby started playing with toys, she actually went out to buy new baby toys because the daughter wanted them since they were hers. They also bought a new highchair for the same reason.
A friend of mines growing up was the oldest of four and there was a pretty large gap between her and her next closest sibling (6 years.) Her parents would give the other kids candy bars on the birthday child's birthday. I pretty much lived there, so they'd also give me a candy bar if I was having dinner with them that night. But, they NEVER asked other parents to bring something for the other kids! That's just rude!

I'm just starting "Siblings without Rivalry" and I think it would be a great present for the parents.

Is the older child even using the high chair or does she just not want the younger sibling to use it because it's hers? Wow.
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