Gransnet forums


How do I opt out ?

(122 Posts)
Madwoman11 Mon 30-Nov-20 06:57:58

I'm sure I'm not the only one who has an ever growing list of people to buy birthday and Christmas presents for, but it's becoming increasingly difficult to actually find something they would like as everyone buys what they want themselves. To be honest I am finding it a chore now. As I said the list just gets longer when they have girlfriends, boyfriends, wives and husbands.
There are no children as such now btw, but I think there will be harsh words from someone if I say I'm opting out. Any ideas please.

Sparkling Mon 30-Nov-20 07:33:54

I feel the same.,,I have been told just to give money,as they prefer buying what they want. This is usually given via the parents now. This might be the last Christmas I give money as it's hardly the spirit of Christmas. Insondercwatvwoukd hspoend if I were to request money as well.

Sparkling Mon 30-Nov-20 07:36:45

That,lasts sentence ended up a,jumbled mess I don't know. how. Sorry I hope you got the meaning,

OceanMama Mon 30-Nov-20 07:41:47

No solutions other than that you have the option to opt out and face the disapproval of those who don't agree. I'm in a similar situation. It's time to shrink Christmas but have an extended family that is like, no way! The only options I see are to make it smaller and displease some people, or just keep going. This year I have kept going with the current practices.

NanKate Mon 30-Nov-20 07:43:24

I often send Amazon online money gifts, which my Godson spends within minutes of arrival! It avoids me sending cards as I used to worry about putting a monetary voucher in the envelope. Sorted.

PollyDolly Mon 30-Nov-20 07:43:28

Personally, I would take the bull by the horns and tell them all 'no presents this year'! To be fair, also state that you want nothing either.
To put this into perspective: you buy X a gift valued at around £20 and X buys you a gift valued at around £20, you both have gifts that you probably don't want, like or need, you are both £20 out of pocket but the supplier is £40 up!
Why stress over this? Explain to them all, no more gifts, even suggest a donation to charity if that placates them.
In my family we only ever buy for the children and this stops at age 18. Adults do get a gift for special birthdays i.e. 40th etc but otherwise, just a card.

Casdon Mon 30-Nov-20 07:51:40

I think you’ve left it too late to change things around much for this year as a lot of people have completed their Christmas shopping already. You could always give cash or gift tokens though, maybe to couples rather than individually, and tell them this is the last year.

Liz46 Mon 30-Nov-20 07:55:22

My grandson wanted a Fifa something or other and I noticed it was reduced at the moment. I am not supposed to go to the shops so I messaged my daughter and asked would it be ok to put £50 each for everyone into her bank account. She was delighted and said she would immediately order the Fifa thing and she would give my granddaughter her £50 and take her to buy clothes.
That went well.
Christmas Day is a bit of a problem as we have been pretty well locked down for about 10 months. I think we will probably stay home unless the weather is good, in which case we may have a walk outdoors with our grandchildren. I am owed so many cuddles!

tanith Mon 30-Nov-20 07:57:28

Our adult family do a secret Santa with a £50 limit. It’s all done online and everyone without fail say it was a relief when we decided to do this. It takes all the pressure out of present buying we only buy for the younger children. It works for us it just takes one person to suggest it.

seacliff Mon 30-Nov-20 08:06:06

I would give them all a voucher this year. Possibly Amazon as they sell such a variety, though I like to try and support smaller businesses.

I would add a note to their cards, saying from next year on, you will not be giving gifts and don't want any from them. No need to give a reason really. If you wanted, you could say you will be giving a donation to charity, but not really necessary.

You may well find others in the family follow your example with relief.

I think IF one year, you are all meeting up, a secret santa for an agreed maximum is good, so you all get one nice present to unwrap. Not too low a cost, no tacky rubbish wanted!!

seacliff Mon 30-Nov-20 08:07:12

Sorry Tanith, I took too long with my post and see you do the same with secret santa.

Hetty58 Mon 30-Nov-20 08:08:59

Madwoman11, we stopped buying for adults decades ago. It was my sister's idea. She just said:

'We're such a big family, I can't keep on doing this. Don't buy us anything and we won't buy for you. Get yourself something nice instead.'

It was such a relief, as I struggled to afford presents for everyone. I hated all the shopping too.

We do an online Elfster 'Secret Santa' for my own children, partners and myself. That way, everyone gets a present.

Usually, I buy for all the grandchildren. After all, that's who Christmas is really for. This year, however, I've sent their parents the money to get them something.

So, thankfully, no shopping or wrapping for me - I like it, and maybe I'll carry on doing that!

J52 Mon 30-Nov-20 08:17:30

My MIL never have any Christmas or Birthday presents, although she was well off and happy to receive them. . No one ever asked her why, we just accepted the way she was.
I like giving presents, regardless of their value. I really do think it’s the thought that counts.
You should explain to your family, I’m sure they’ll be fine

sodapop Mon 30-Nov-20 08:22:39

I agree with Casdon you have left it a bit late to change things this year, in any case we probably need that kind thought more than ever now. Giving a token etc to couples instead of individual gifts will reduce the cost. Next year talk to your family about present giving and come to a compromise.

Madwoman11 Mon 30-Nov-20 08:28:56

Sorry for the confusion every I should have said I have bought everyone presents this year.

I do like giving gifts, but would rather buy thoughtful gifts throughout the year if I see something I know someone will like.
Thank you for your lovely replies.

Justwidowed Mon 30-Nov-20 08:29:26

I stopped buying for grandchildren once they reached 18.I now buy for 8 GGC and 2 GC.They get £25 each with request that they invest it in Premium bonds. I do the same for birthdays .I also buy token presents for 6 foster GGC.The parents are happy and they club together and buy me a decent present. It was getting hard work choosing gifts for children who seem to have everything.

Pittcity Mon 30-Nov-20 08:31:14

This year we have bought the littlies things that they have asked for. Otherwise we have supported local charities and small businesses and bought small gifts from them for the adults. These people need our support and so I am spending the money with them that I would normally have spent on eating out in December.

Personally I would love to opt out of the commercialised Christmas we have nowadays.

MrsThreadgoode Mon 30-Nov-20 08:45:15

I have bought a box of sweets and a bottle of wine for AC nieces and nephews until this year, thinking that can either love it or give it away, they never say thank you anyway, so this year it’s young children only and it will be money as we can’t visit any of the. Due to their tier.
Family GCs are having gifts bought online and delivered to their mother in their own home, she will wrap them and I will post the gift tags.

Niobe Mon 30-Nov-20 08:47:00

Two years ago we set a £20 limit on Christmas presents and that works brilliantly. The exception is our grandson who gets a small gift to open and some money for his piggy so his parents can decide what he needs.

Iam64 Mon 30-Nov-20 09:04:10

I've always rather liked the secret Santa with a specified amount. I tried to introduce it years ago when we had three dependent children and limited income. My mother simply said no, we aren't that kind of family.
Maybe its something to suggest during 2021 (assuming it's a more normal kind of year than this one has been)

Cabbie21 Mon 30-Nov-20 09:06:18

The age 18 limit makes sense on paper, but how do you exclude your oldest grandchild and give to everyone else?

yggdrasil Mon 30-Nov-20 09:33:43

I give to my grandchildren, presents for the young ones , money for the older ones with the instruction to tell me what they spent it on. One also has a birthday 2nd Jan so ditto.
My daughter lives the other side of the country and I haven't seen them for ages. So for a long time I have sent a token present (£10-15max) so they all have something to unwrap Xmas morning.

Marthjolly1 Mon 30-Nov-20 09:44:21

I stopped buying for all and sundry years ago. I just couldnt cope with the stress. I told everyone I would no longer buy presents and gave money to a children's charity. I didnt have grandchildren then so now just buy them a small thing and put money into their savings and buy a couple of little things for their mums. I'm sad that christmas is just one huge commercial fest and has nothing to do with the birth of Jesus.

TerriBull Mon 30-Nov-20 09:50:52

I understand how you feel OP, particularly this year. I'm getting everything on line, or it's money. I'm absolutely not going to be going round the shops when they open, Don't enjoy it anyway, less so with a mask, and I imagine there will be another spike leading to a 3rd lockdown after December, which hardly seems worth it to me. Christmas, or should I say the rampantly commercial side of it has always been a massive pain in the arse at the best of times. I'm sure most of the population don't want the massive build up this year. We just want to get over this winter hopefully with a vaccine rolled out and look forwards to 2021 hoping and praying things will improve.

Nadateturbe Mon 30-Nov-20 10:02:47

Why not just buy immediate family and bite the bullet where the others are concerned?
Or buy everyone the same thing, like a nice bottle of wine, a yankee candle or suchlike.
But if you really don't want to buy anyone tell everyone not to buy you, and that you're not doing it any longer. They may not be happy but by the following Christmas it will be just accepted. It may be late for this year.

I always thought I would stop at eighteen but it's not easy when there are two GC in a family and one is under 18.