Saturday, May 12, 2007

Marital financial bliss? part

Yesterday I talked about being unworthy of money. Now I'm going to talk about gift giving because it sort of continues the thread of thought. On Thursday I mailed out Mother's day gifts to my family. I enjoy gift giving so I give because I like it. Anyway I bought MIL a card for DH to give her, he's seeing her this weekend at his conference in SD. I offered him a gift basket I made for my family members but he said no.

So here is a difference between our families. I give gifts to my side, but DH has decided he's tired of gift giving to their side. In our years together I think I've gotten a gift the very first Christmas I meet my in-laws and that's it. No birthday, no other Christmas, nothing. Have I given them a gift? Yes. Every year because I felt it fair given that I give it to my parents.

But I think I'm starting to come around to DH's feelings. He feels that people in his small family don't exchange gifts so we should stop giving them a gift. Actually we should stop giving them even a card he says because his parents think we're killing trees and wasting money. Don't bother, just give them a ring instead.

I'm really bothered still by this though, and yes I know I shouldn't. But here I am spending a small fortune on my parents, aunts/uncles, grandma, sibs, etc, and ignoring DH's family.

Is this accceptable since DH says no? Should I just give up after 8 years and say it's stupid and ignore any holidays, birthdays, etc? Will it be weird when we have kids and they get nothing, but my side of the family sends them gifts?

I guess this is an argument that doesn't have an answer unless you readers want to weigh in and tell me what to do. I'm really stuck for once. And I yes can afford their gifts, it's just that when I sometimes buy them a gift, DH gets mad and says don't send it. So I end up with a gift I don't send.


Anonymous said...

We stopped giving gifts to my husband's family. They are struggling financially and it has become quite apparent. 2 Xmas's ago their gifts to us were so lame, so poverty stricken, we realized we were putting them in a precarious position because we were giving them gifts. They had to respond in kind. But if we stopped, they would stop, so we stopped! We just exchange cards now. No birthdays, Xmas, anniversaries, Mother/Father's Day gifts.

Living Almost Large said...

They aren't struggling financially at all. So it's not about the money.

Anonymous said...

Different families have different "family cultures". I think you should follow the family culture unless you have a good reason not to (e.g. they have a tradition of spending lavishly and extravagantly, but you are trying to save money and live simply).

Have you read The Five Love Languages? It says that different people express/receive love in different ways. For some it's gifts, for others it's words, for others it's physical touch, etc. You need to express your love in a way that they will understand.