Gransnet forums


AIBU to expect a birthday card

(106 Posts)
Abbeygran Sat 13-Oct-18 20:48:48

Last year my son forgot my birthday. His marriage had just broken up so I let it go. This year, he’s forgotten again. To make matters worse, my daughter has also forgotten. She’s away at the moment for her job, and I’m looking after my DGS. I help both my AC with my dgs and dgd. I help pay for clothes, trips, have helped pay for holidays etc and ask for nothing in return. To be forgotten on my birthday has upset me very much. Am I being over sensitive?

vickymeldrew Sun 14-Oct-18 20:52:43

Funny old things birthdays. My DSs are very hit and miss on the card front. Also, if you have to remind someone then it’s pointless as they wouldn’t have remembered without the prompt! Happy birthday Abbeygran x

Abbeygran Sun 14-Oct-18 21:21:26

Thank you for all your kind wishes and advice. Another year older, and wiser.

Nanabilly Sun 14-Oct-18 21:29:09

I was reading something yesterday that said there are so many people who have stopped sending cards now as they say it's outdated. Yes they 're expensive ..yes you actually have to walk down the cards aisle to choose one but it's not much to ask is it. It is to them obviously they would rather send a WhatsApp message or a text. Or nothing at all.
I think it's something we have to get used to.

tidyskatemum Sun 14-Oct-18 21:36:08

MY DC both live abroad and after a card which took 4 months to get here from Thailand none of us bother with birthday cards any more - but they ALWAYS get in touch to wish us a happy birthday and vice versa. Your selfish children deserve an ear bashing.

Doodle Sun 14-Oct-18 21:48:30

Abbeygran many happy returns for yesterday. Sorry you had a disappointing day. I know many young people don't do cards anymore. They just don't think about them in the same way that we do. I hope they will make it up to you. A gentle reminder perhaps (I always remind my son well in advance ?)

Starlady Mon 15-Oct-18 02:03:00

More birthday wishes from me, Abbeygran. Sorry ds forgot your birthday twice in a row. He may still be adjusting to his divorce, but I know his forgetting was still disappointing.

When you say your dd called, do you mean to wish you Happy Birthday? If so, then, in my view, she didn't forget, she just handled it a different way than you expected. I know people who always call on birthdays instead of sending a card and have a friend who actually prefers that. As long as she acknowledged your birthday, I think she did ok.

Someone mentioned social media. Are you friends with your ac on fb? I know either you or they might not want that. But people often post birthday greetings to each other there, and that may be what ds is used to now. Also, one can list their birthday on fb (just the month and day if one prefers), and then one's fb friends get reminders and often post birthday wishes. You'd probably rather they remember on their own. But some people just don't. So fb might be a solution if you're not on there already. Worth thinking about, imo.

Apricity Mon 15-Oct-18 08:39:01

Would I like to get amazing birthday cards every birthday? Yes!
Do I? No!
Do my children and grandchildren love me and value me? Yes!
Do I fell very confident of that? Yes!
They're just not always really good about the cards business. Life gets in the way at times. Sometimes, don't sweat the small stuff. Value what is really important.
PS. Hope you had a Happy Birthday. ?

HellsBells Mon 15-Oct-18 11:41:36

We all forget things sometimes - one or other of my 6 children regularly forgets my birthday - who cares I know they love me and that i love them -that is all that matters really

TillyWhiz Mon 15-Oct-18 11:45:10

Happy birthday - my OH suddenly said to me the day before ' Oops I haven't got a card ...' As it was our Golden Anniversary he got The Look and disappeared out in the car! He came up trumps. A good tip - post your birthday on Facebook, it works wonders!

sarahellenwhitney Mon 15-Oct-18 11:45:23

Unacceptable that we mums should be forgotten on our birthday .Unless our children are ill or an emergency occurs then what is to stop them from having a card previously brought and stamped ready to pop in the box Even if it gets to us the day before or the day after isn't it the thought that counts?flowers to all mums who didn't get a card from their children.

maddyone Mon 15-Oct-18 11:46:01

Happy belated birthday Abbey, and no, you’re not being unreasonable. They should send a card and wish you a happy birthday on the day at the very least, and to pick up, or send through internet, a bunch of flowers or box of chocs isn’t too much effort, in my opinion. I wonder what they’d think if you ‘forgot’ to turn up for childcare! Wouldn’t be too pleased I guess!

GabriellaG Mon 15-Oct-18 11:48:46

No, you are not being over sensitive but helping your AC in myriad ways does not mean they 'owe you', if you voluntarily offer your services.
If they and their ex partners are both working, why are you supplementing their incomes (presuming the exes make proper contributions) with clothes, trips, holidays etc?
Men as you know, are, in the main, forgetful of birthdays, anniversaries etc and your daughter probably has work and travel arrangements on her mind.
It's best not to expect anything from anyone.
If you feel the need to remind them, their delayed greetings will be hollow comfort as they were not spontaneous.

GabriellaG Mon 15-Oct-18 11:53:04

It's just another day. I really don't 'get' why people, mostly women, go into a blue funk when a birthday or similar occasion is forgotten. The celebration was on the day you were born, not 70 years after the event, which has no relevance other than that you've survived another year.

grannytotwins Mon 15-Oct-18 11:55:58

I think I’d have replied to the WhatsApp with something like: I’ll get back to you. I’m too busy enjoying my birthday right now.

Quickdraw Mon 15-Oct-18 11:56:22

Happy Belated Birthday! I think a lot of people now don't bother so much with cards but acknowledge birthdays in other ways. I think you should let them know. Maybe you could mention something you did on your birthday or if the subject of age comes up... You are not being unreasonable . It's about priorities and not being selfish. Would they acknowledge if you forgot something... like looking after their children. If you don't let them know this year it could happen again.

Willow10 Mon 15-Oct-18 11:58:38

I dont think it's asking too much at all for a mum to expect a birthday card - in fact it is the very least they can do. Maybe you ARE doing too much and they are now just taking you for granted. Time to speak up and let them know how hurt you are and how much it means to you. How would they feel if their birthdays were forgotten? Happy belated birthday to you. flowers

Newatthis Mon 15-Oct-18 11:58:41

Distant relative/ relative acceptable - oneschildren not, in my books for any reason. Maybe you could comment and say - 'are we not sending cards anymore?' Anyway Happy Birthday and please don't let this spoil it for you - difficult I know!

dumdum Mon 15-Oct-18 11:59:33

I sometimes send electronic cards...I know one shouldn't advertise, but there is one company I think are particularly good and have some lovely animated cards. Terrible thing to say, but am a bit ambivalent about real cards, they are expensive and end up in the recycling.

Silverlady79 Mon 15-Oct-18 12:01:21

This is from a different perspective and not designed to hurt in any way. I "forgot" my parent's birthday as I got older as I had so much hurt inside me of their treatment of me, particularly by my father. It was a sort of silent protest at "see what it feels like to be unloved". Now they are dead and I bitterly regret my actions but at the time it was a sort of silent scream.

LuckyFour Mon 15-Oct-18 12:04:52

Send them (or tell them on their return) a message to say what a lovely birthday you had going out with a friend/looking after the grandchildren or whatever. Don't say it in an accusing way, just ignore the fact they forgot your birthday, and if they apologise just say it doesn't matter at I had a good day.

Make something up if you need to.

Jayelld Mon 15-Oct-18 12:06:46

My daughter and her husband don't 'do' birthday or Christmas cards but always give me one and for mothers day. As a result I send ecards and texts to them on the day. Presents are tailored to what they ask for. My 4 grandchildren still get cards, so a mix of both worlds. Having said that, my daughter has warned me that they will be on holiday out of the country on my birthday so we'll get together before they go, no big deal, it's 'only' my 65th!
Like other posted, I would feel upset and hurt if they forgot my birthday and I didn't receive a card or phone call. It's the one day of the year that is special to you, and should be celebrated (if that is what you do for birthdays!).

Jaycee5 Mon 15-Oct-18 12:10:20

I would just say 'I think your birthday card got lost in the post' then let it go.
It is getting less routine to send cards though - although there should be at least a call or text instead.

gilld69 Mon 15-Oct-18 12:11:37

im the same unless i reminded my kids then i dont think theyd give me a second thought although i jump through hoops to make sure them and the grandkids are well looked after , my hubby does get annoyed although he never says anything , sometimes i feel like a mug.

lilihu Mon 15-Oct-18 12:14:30

Maybe today’s young people aren’t keen on sending cards generally - they are expensive and involves a shopping trip and a search for a suitable card. However if you know your mum would appreciate a card with a loving message, surely it would be worth the effort? You can even choose and order online and have the card posted direct!!! You could get the grandchildren to make one? Everyone who has a busy life can also organise the time to do something to celebrate their mother’s birthday? Not a party, not a gift, just a flippin Card! It’s only one day in the year?

leeds22 Mon 15-Oct-18 12:32:15

Happy Birthday Abbeygran. Know how you feel, DH and have a competition each year to see how many cards we get from our 3 sons, sometimes 1 or 2. 3 is a real bragging birthday. It does hurt that they can't be bothered to remember. We don't get birthday presents from any of them and only one son gives us a Christmas present these days.