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AIBU - Grandchildren

(78 Posts)
cossybabe Mon 08-Jan-24 17:01:47

We have 9 grandchildren ( all over the age of 15) - 4 of whom have birthdays during the first week in January. We send each of them a £50 voucher for Christmas and a £30 voucher for birthdays. But not one of them ever phones, emails, or messages a thank you. This is beginning to get to me.? Your comments, please

silverlining48 Mon 08-Jan-24 17:10:47

That amounts to a lot of money cossy. Given that youngsters, and older sters too. Will always have their phones to hand a short thank-you only takes a second.
It’s very disappointing and I woukd consider cutting it down, or particularly for the older ones, stopping altogether.
It’s plain rude given how fast and easy it is to send a message. No need to spend time writing a letter, find an envelope buy a stamp and walk to a postbox……

Nannynoodles Mon 08-Jan-24 17:15:17

I think I would carry on until they are 18 and then stop sending money and just send a card instead.
You never know they might contact you to find out where their money is and in that case you can tell them!!

Grandmabatty Mon 08-Jan-24 17:17:11

Did you make sure your children, ie their parents thanked people for gifts? If you didn't, then you can't expect the next generation to. If you did, I would be asking them why your grandchildren never acknowledge your gifts

welbeck Mon 08-Jan-24 17:24:18

some passive-aggressive suggestions here; i don't think they are a good idea, but seem to be much used in this country.
we can't really change other people's behaviour by kind of pushing them into it.
it's like trying to make someone be fond of you. it won't work.
you obviously expect gratitude to be expressed for these lavish, to my mind, gifts.
it's not happening, therefore you are continuing to cause yourself disappointment.
so better to avoid all that.
either taper off gradually, or just stop.

fancythat Mon 08-Jan-24 17:32:58

Do they keep in touch at other times and in other ways?

Theexwife Mon 08-Jan-24 17:41:48

My brother tells my niece to send a thank you text, I dont think she would otherwise. I do think that at age 14 she should have the good manners to do it without prompting, however I seem to remember being the same at that age, my mother would tell me to send thank you letters which I would reluctantly do.

sodapop Mon 08-Jan-24 17:43:07

Why don't you talk to them about this cossybabe and tell them how disappointed you are not to receive an acknowledgement of your gifts. I agree with silverlining it's rude,ungrateful and thoughtless. I would most certainly speak to any of my grandchildren if they behaved like this.

Septimia Mon 08-Jan-24 17:53:46

I have a similar problem with great-niece and -nephews. If you send something, you at least need to know it's arrived safely and a text message is adequate these days. I didn't send directly to them this Christmas but made alternative arrangements.

I shall stop sending money (not much) for birthdays when they reach 16, just as I did with their mother, although I shall continue to send cards. GD gets a nudge from her dad, fortunately, if we're not actually on the spot.

M0nica Mon 08-Jan-24 17:59:19

Why not talk to their parents, they are the ones who should be teaching and reminding their children to send thank you notes.

If after talking to parents, thank you notes are still unforthcoming, stop giving the presents.

Jaxjacky Mon 08-Jan-24 18:13:34

How do you send them cossy?
Perhaps a ‘please let me know you have it safely’ may produce a thank you.

seadragon Mon 08-Jan-24 20:08:24

I enjoy choosing, wrapping and sending gifts to 3 DGC and always by special delivery so I know they've arrived. I love it when they thank me but don't mind if they don't. We live a very simple life so this is an indulgence of mine. It's nice if they mention a gift at some point but not essential. I know from my own experience that there will be something amongst the gifts we have given them that will bring smiles to their faces when they are older...perhaps after we're gone...

PaperMonster Mon 08-Jan-24 20:20:41

Seadragon, that is so lovely and very much in the spirit of giving a gift.

Nansnet Tue 09-Jan-24 07:39:22

cossybabe, I'd make my feeling known and tell their parents you're a bit disappointed that your grandchildren can't be bothered to say thank you. They should be prompting their kids to call, or at least send a text to their grandparents to say thanks for the money.

How do you get the money to them ... in a card, pass it on to mum or dad to give to them? If mum/dad say thanks on their behalf it's really not quite the same. We all know that it wouldn't enter the minds of many teenagers to do such a thing, even though I'm sure they appreciate it, so it's up to mum or dad to make sure they do it!

eazybee Tue 09-Jan-24 09:08:24

I would ring each one, or their parents, and ask pointedly if they had received the gift, 'as I haven't heard from you'.
One more chance, and then i would stop.

Redhead56 Tue 09-Jan-24 10:05:59

If you see them or WhatsApp them ask them did you receive the vouchers I sent. I would mention it to their parents too because you worry if they get lost in the post.

I would say I would like to know that they were received as I will be wary of sending vouchers in future. They might be more inclined to acknowledge the vouchers in future or not!

NotSpaghetti Tue 09-Jan-24 10:39:23

My grandchildren are given monetary birthday gifts via their parents (my children). The money goes from my mother-in-law into their parents account. I think this is not helpful for the children as they sometimes have less awareness of the money so yes, need reminding to say thank you (I think this is also true if they have money "in trust").

The oldest of my grandchildren now has his own account and the money went directly to him. He noticed it about 10 days afterwards and phoned my mother-in-law to thank her. I know she prefers letters but she did have a 20 minute chat with a teenager so 👍

ExDancer Tue 09-Jan-24 10:56:26

I contact them by phone and ask them if their money arrived safely. They usually say something like "Oh yes grannie, thank you". them I say "that's a relief, but next time do let me know and put my mind at rest".
BUT it doesn't work, every year I repeat the same.
I stopped giving at 18years.

Stitchyshals Tue 09-Jan-24 18:13:20

Kids at that age can be thoughtless. Not intentionally, they are just very self interested. I am sure they would be mortified to know their lack of contact upset you. It probably never even occurred to them. As they get older and become more aware of others I am sure it will change.

flappergirl Tue 09-Jan-24 20:14:55

I'd have a word with the parents (whichever one is your child). When my mum was terminally ill I was extremely disappointed that my brother's daughter (my mum's GD who was then 18) hadn't written to her. My mum had helped this girl quite a lot and was very fond of her. I phoned my brother and politely but firmly told him how dearly my mum would like a letter from her. A letter was soon dispatched.

Otherwise, I think you are being very generous and I would cut it back, especially in light of zero gratitude.

MamaB247 Wed 10-Jan-24 11:12:15

I don't get why everyone expects gratitude for gifts. Yes it's nice but it's a gift and that's about giving no expectations. I've always sent an elderly friend £50 shopping vouchers each Christmas and I never get a thank you, I don't care to be fair, because I know from experience she's a cantankerous old sod who doesn't thank anyone, but I also know when she gets that voucher the first thing she does is go to or local discount supermarket and stock up on a huge trolley full of cheap tinned food, these keep her in food almost all year. If you were to offer her food parcels she'd turn them down, she's too stubborn to ask for help just as she is too stubborn to say thanks. But she sees that voucher as a Christmas routine and I know she uses it so I'm happy. Why must everyone have a thank you. I can't recall children saying thanks to Santa all those years growing up. When it's Christmas or Birthdays people don't want to be sat down trying to message everyone a thanks. Ye sit would be nice and some do it. But that's not the idea of gifting. The idea of gifting is to expect nothing in return.

mimismo Wed 10-Jan-24 11:15:10

Stop when they're 18, I left it to 21 and wish that I hadn't. Money down the drain and no thanks.

TwiceAsNice Wed 10-Jan-24 11:22:26

Several people seem to stop giving when young people are 18. Unless it’s financially difficult I’m puzzled why people do this. I give gifts out of love regardless of age.

I have two adult godchildren I am still very close to and still give them Christmas and birthday gifts/cheque. I can’t image ever stopping gifts to children or grandchildren ever but perhaps that’s just me.

Glenfinnan Wed 10-Jan-24 11:24:19

Unfortunately this seems to be the ‘norm’ these days. I too think it’s thoughtless behaviour. I stop when they are 21… for both Christmas and Birthdays. Then it’s a card only.

Knitandnatter Wed 10-Jan-24 11:25:41

My grandchildren are not the problem here......I is my OH's niece who simply cannot say 'thank you'. Years ago she would send a thank you letter or card but now she has her own mobile phone it is so much easier........but no, she hasn't messaged either of us for three years now. I now refuse to send any more money for her birthday or Christmas, she had her three chances and I've now removed her bank details from our bank account.
Incidentally, all our respective AC were always brought up to say thank you and this reflects on the behaviour of all the GC, it is just this one niece who just takes and won't acknowledge us.