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Adult sons and male OH’s

(42 Posts)
jenpax Mon 14-May-18 09:43:29

As the only daughter of an only daughter and with 3 DD of my own I am interested in people’s ideas as to why so many adult sons and male partners forget or fail to acknowledge things like birthdays or Mothering Sundays for their partners or mothers? I realise that this is not universal and there are many thoughtful examples but from the various threads I have read it does seem to be a reoccurring problem? I would be especially interested to hear from Mother’s of sons?

lemongrove Mon 14-May-18 10:05:38

As said in the other thread jen our son is very thoughtful,
And a lot of this is down to the character of the son himself in most cases.
However, once married, a man puts his wife first ( quite rightly) and often leaves the sending of cards and gifts to her, I can’t imagine many men sit down and look through birthday books or write and send all the Christmas cards.
Having a wish list on Amazon makes it a lot easier for sons to send you something ( that you will actually like grin)
If you have given your son/sons as good an upbringing as you were able to do, then it’s not too much to expect a card and gift on your birthday, as long as you remember to make sure that you send one to them on their birthday, these things work both ways.

Blinko Mon 14-May-18 10:13:22

We have 2 sons, no daughters. Both do send cards and we sometimes grin receive an Amazon voucher too. As Lemongrove says, men often leave the sending to their wives. On the other hand, our DiLs pride themselves on - er - training our sons in their own ways. This means that they leave the card sending and present buying (for us at any rate) to our sons. Hence the somewhat haphazard approach.

It kind of works. Though from various threads on here, and in our experience, I do subscribe to the old adage 'A son's a son till he gets a wife...'

tanith Mon 14-May-18 10:17:27

My son is sporadic, one year I’ll receive a beautiful bouquet and the next nothing. I don’t remember receiving birthday or Christmas card from him ever. I can’t explain it as my girls never forget. I certainly don’t expect his partner to do it for him in fact she once said she thinks its thoughtless and probably nags him to do it.
He lives abroad and when I visit he is very caring and generous with his time and money so I’ve learnt to just let it go, he shows me he does care but just doesn’t ‘do’ cards.

Oh and I never forget him or his partner and their children’s cards.

lemongrove Mon 14-May-18 10:32:16

I think technology helps a lot, our son has a diary set up on (computer) and iPad so is always aware of dates.
I used to remind DH about his Mothers Birthday and we would usually discuss what the present would be.
My DIL has a birthday book, and I have now got one myself, and very useful it is, as I get more forgetful.

Harris27 Mon 14-May-18 10:43:05

I have three sons youngest not married and always remembers my birthdays Mother's Day and our wedding anniversary. So do feel lucky .the other two also send cards and birthday presents would feel hurt if they didn't.

quizqueen Mon 14-May-18 10:52:41

To not remember one's parents ( especially good ones) on their special occasions is disrespectful, hurtful and mean spirited, whatever their sex and adult children should be ashamed of themselves if they don't. It is not a wife's responsibility to make up for men's lack of thoughtfulness towards their parents.

J52 Mon 14-May-18 11:02:13

My MIL had 3 sons. She herself didn’t bother much about birthdays or other occasions and rarely sent cards. I think her attitude was passed on to her sons.
DH has always relied on me to remember occasions and buy the cards and gifts.
However, our own DSs are very good at remembering to mark occasions with cards bought and written by themselves. They also never fail to give gifts, I’d like to think I’ve been instrumental in their thoughtfulness towards others and their families.

Coconut Mon 14-May-18 11:04:53

Have 2 DS’s and one DD ... my DD is more sensitive and empathetic .... however, I do pride myself in my relationship with both DS’s too. They always give me beautiful cards, with their own lovely words, and both spoil me with holidays and trips to London, tickets for shows etc So I do consider myself very lucky, and as a bonus all 3 have absolutely lovely partners too.

icanhandthemback Mon 14-May-18 11:36:24

Mothers have to teach their sons to be thoughtful but the biggest influence is probably their father. It isn't really good enough to say "Men aren't like that." It is also important to show them than actions speak louder than cards and presents.

Sheilasue Mon 14-May-18 11:49:17

My son died, I have two Mother’s Day cards he sent me and h has a Father’s Day card. They come out every year.

lizzypopbottle Mon 14-May-18 11:53:04

I have two sons and one daughter. All are (generally) conscientious about sending cards but I know they all love me very much. Two of them say so in as many words and with hugs (daughter and younger son) and the other one is more reserved but I know him better (probably) than he realises! I'm not even slightly offended if a card is last minute, late or even forgotten. They always phone, text or whatsapp no matter how busy they may be. This also works both ways. My cards to them are sometimes last minute or late!

Blinko Mon 14-May-18 12:02:32

SheilaSue, sad flowers

Greciangirl Mon 14-May-18 12:06:22

I only ever get a text from my son on mother’s day.
He always sends birthday cards though.

My daughter, on the other hand, always buys presents and cards for. Every occasion.

Barmeyoldbat Mon 14-May-18 12:12:17

I have onevery lovely caring son, sometimes he surprises me with a mother’s day card, a birthday card and nearly always a. Christmas card signed by him and. The kids. He once sent my husband, his step dad a birthday card, with a message thanking him for all he did for. Him and the children. But to look at him you would think he was a down and and out but he is just scruffy! Wouldn’t have him any other way.

stella1949 Mon 14-May-18 12:24:06

My son remembers me every day. He isn't good at birthdays and Mother's Day, but every day I get a text, a phone call or a personal visit to say he loves and appreciates me. So the "big days" are not a big deal to me.

trisher Mon 14-May-18 12:36:41

I'm not good at remembering dates- and it is worse now I'm retired. Inclined to suddenly realise "Oh it's * birthday TODAY". 3 sons usually send cards but if they forget I understand. And sometimes it's nice to have one turn up a couple of days after the right date with flowers or chocolates.

luluaugust Mon 14-May-18 13:07:57

A generalisation but I think many men are not bothered themselves about celebrating birthdays etc and don't understand why women want a bit of a fuss made, particularly when they are young. If their Dad didn't do much in the way of presents and cards they pick up on that. My son does remember which is lovely.

Jan5954 Mon 14-May-18 14:00:33

I count myself very lucky ...despite having 2 sons, l get cards and pressies on all important occasions.

I think the answer lies in being really good friends with their wives, which very fortunately l am. Both DIL’s are very caring and generous with their own mums so l think they both encourage/remind my 2 dear sons to do the same.
I suspect that both sons might probably forget without their lovely wives to remind them it’s a win win for me.

JackyB Mon 14-May-18 14:16:09

In my experience, it is always the wife who remembers birthdays and celebrations, even of the most distant cousins, nephews and nieces on her husband's side.

For example, my husband has had an invitation to a class reunion (he left school in 1968, 50 years ago!) from the wife of a classmate, who wasn't even in the class with them.

Having said that, my DH has a birthday calendar hanging in his study and sends off e-mails to congratulate his own family and friends. Cards are not really a custom here in Germany. On birthdays people usually phone or send e-mails, if at all.

Yesterday was Mother's Day here in Germany. I got one text from one son, last thing at night!

Jalima1108 Mon 14-May-18 14:38:45

My DS must be the exception to all the rules then; he always remembers and insists on buying cards and present himself, although DIL always quietly asks me what I'd like so that she can pass on the hints.

Ziggy62 Mon 14-May-18 14:59:50

my DS used to give me lovely cards and a bunch of flowers from when he had his first job as a paper boy. After getting married it depended on the mood of his wife that week whether I got a card or not. Eventually about 9 years ago I didn't even get a text or a phone call.

He went on to say he "didn't do cards" then when his eldest child , my DGD, reached teenage years she followed his example.

To cut a long story short I no longer "do cards" or presents. Spend my hard earned money on those who appreciate me

Harsh? possibly but I'm no longer accepting bad manners from my own family

Hm999 Mon 14-May-18 15:16:13

I have a ds and a dd. One child sends cards, the other says thank you often for the grannie stuff.

Jang Mon 14-May-18 15:23:42

I have 2 DS, one always sends card and usually takes me out or invites me over on Mothers day/Birthdays. T'other ( younger) usually forgets M Day and occas Birthday, but I do sometimes get a text.. and am told he has a pressie for me which I often don't see... that's just him so I am not bothered, he has a girlfriend now so maybe things will change.. now his twin also always remembers!

NonnaW Mon 14-May-18 16:03:08

I have 3 DS, none of whom ‘do’ cards. DS2 usually organises joint presents, sometimes he delegates to DS3, but never DS1 - notoriously unreliable for that. None are married so no DILs to remind them. However, whenever DS1 rings me he never fails to tell me he loves me. The other two show me by their actions.