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Would you expect your husband to buy you a birthday card and present when you always mark his birthday with a nice gift and a card?

(95 Posts)
nancan Wed 26-Oct-16 21:55:43

My husband and I were away travelling on holiday the other week when it was my birthday. He wished me happy birthday and that was that, not mentioned again. We have been married just under 8 years. When it's MH birthday I always buy him a card and nice present so it seems mean. This is not the first time this has happened, in fact, it's the third year running. We are a happy couple and I just don't understand why this happens. When someone asks he just says he didn't have chance to get anything. To add insult to injury when we arrived home he said there were some cards through the post and opened them! What should I do when it's his birthday?

cornishclio Wed 26-Oct-16 22:08:47

seems hurtful to not even get you a card. Is he lazy in other aspects of your relationship? What about Christmas? I would tell him you feel a bit unloved and unappreciated when he can't even be bothered to get you a card. Opening your post too. What is that about?

You can either have it out with him or resign yourself to never having cards or presents from him for your birthday and no I would not be inclined to bother about his either. I would be quite resentful if that was my husband.

Charleygirl Wed 26-Oct-16 22:20:16

I agree, when it is his birthday, do not bother to give him anything and if he queries this, "you did not have a chance" and see how he feels, probably a bit miffed. I would not be happy.

nancan Wed 26-Oct-16 22:25:57

The odd thing is he is a very loving and attentive husband, this is why it seems so out of character. When it's his birthday I have usually calmed down and buy him presents and card as usual.

vampirequeen Wed 26-Oct-16 22:26:23

It depends on what sort of birthdays he grew up with. DH's birthday is Christmas Day. His parents were uncaring abusive and barely marked Christmas for him let alone his birthday. If he wasn't brought up to mark birthdays then he won't understand how important they are.

If he always had birthdays then he needs a kick up the backside to remind him that birthdays are special. If he didn't then you need to remind him in a more gentle manner.

nancan Wed 26-Oct-16 22:39:43

Yes VQ my mum's birthday was Christmas Day and she really disliked the day. I am not a massive fan of birthdays but it's nice to acknowledge it.
Whilst we were away one of his sons had a birthday too, OH asked him what he would like and we went out to buy what he asked for, together with a carefully chosen card!

Penstemmon Wed 26-Oct-16 22:53:15

I do think people have different views on bithdays. My family made a big deal of b'days but DHs family was more low key. SiL unused to b'days having tradition /expectations as that was not his experience.
However a card and flowers is the least one might expect & then a lovey meal out somewhere!
I would say you were disappointed you could not properly celebrate your birthday because you were away so you have booked a restaurant and that he can pay as a belated gift! Maybe he will get the message! grin

Hilltopgran Wed 26-Oct-16 23:02:15

It took several years when we were first married before DH realised marking birthdays and Christmas mattered to me. I still do not just leave it to chance and remind him, plus I arrange a meal out and he pays.

Some men just do not feel the same as their wives and partners about presents and celebrations.

mumofmadboys Wed 26-Oct-16 23:02:48

I would discuss it with him some time after your birthday and explain you were hurt and disappointed and then hopefully it will not escalate into a row and he will amend his behaviour for next year. I would continue to give him a nice birthday card/ present( modelling good behaviour!!)

Anya Wed 26-Oct-16 23:06:11

Yes, of course I'd expect a present and a card or there would be trouble.

End of.

Caretaker Wed 26-Oct-16 23:07:35

I would make it clear to him 4/5 days before your birthday that you would like a card and present. You should not have to tell him but he does not seem to understand it means something to you. We have been married 45 years together 48 years and I have always bought my wife red roses, card and present. She in return always buys me a gift and card, it's only one day a year for goodness sake. Your husbands family may not have made a big thing about birthdays so that may be like he is. Does he express his feeling in other ways. If my wife and children did not buy me a birthday card I would not be happy neither would my lovey. Don't put up with it you tell him.

nancan Wed 26-Oct-16 23:18:28

I think it's a great idea - I'll try the reminding him a few days beforehand. No excuse then eh? He knows I can never forget his birthday as it's our wedding anniversary. Don't think he would dare not to buy me a WA card. I will continue to rise above it all and hope things go well for next year (especially as I'm going to be 70)

Eloethan Wed 26-Oct-16 23:26:16

I would be hurt not to receive a card and even if a partner is completely at a loss as to what present to get, I think - although admittedly not that original - flowers and a meal out are nice.

My husband is generous and thoughtful with presents but he asks me not to buy him anything. He is difficult to buy for anyway but if I do buy something, he says I shouldn't have, especially if it is quite expensive. So I always buy a card but sometimes don't buy a present - or only buy something small.

nancan Given that you haven't indicated to him that you're not bothered about receiving cards and presents, it might be that your husband is a bit self-centred. And yet you say that he is loving and attentive the rest of the time so perhaps he just doesn't see it as a big deal. I think, on balance, it is better to have a partner who is generally caring and affectionate than one who lavishes you with gifts on your birthdays, anniversaries, etc., but does it more as a matter of form and doesn't go out of his way to be affectionate the rest of the year. But, since you find it hurtful, I wonder if you should tell him that it makes you feel unloved and sad.

Synonymous Wed 26-Oct-16 23:59:29

nancan if he took the trouble to buy a nice card and a gift for his son while you were away and when it was your birthday too then I would be more than miffed. angry
It would never happen with DH but if it ever did I would swiftly have picked out something very nice for myself and have had it gift wrapped. I would have bought a very soppy card, made him sign it and given him a big kiss for his generous gift and made him watch me tear off the wrapping paper.
If I was feeling super miffed I think I would have made sure it was all done in front of as many friends as possible. grin
As they say "the fun is in the plotting" and that is what reduces the tension or takes away the sting...... however....... it might be worth considering!?!? hmm
In fact since it is now three times that he has failed to buy you a gift then I reckon you should get a set of some nice things! I think you have been a very patient and gracious lady!
He would not forget or neglect you the next year!

Synonymous Thu 27-Oct-16 00:01:30

PS Opening your mail is totally out of order! shock

Synonymous Thu 27-Oct-16 00:04:31

PPS As for what you should do when it is his birthday ..... I refer you to my friend .....
Mrs Doasyouwouldbedoneby! smile

Shanma Thu 27-Oct-16 00:32:25

if all is good otherwise why would you worry about a card? or a present for that matter. My DH is the one who usually remembers, sometimes I do , sometimes not. This year for our 42nd anniversary I forgot, doesn't mean I don't care. I just don't have a sentimental bone in my body.

Synonymous Thu 27-Oct-16 01:05:37

Shanna perhaps it is time to start saving and do something so lovely and special that it blows DH's socks off. You would undoubtedly get a lot of joy out of it too. smile

suzied Thu 27-Oct-16 09:27:16

Do you choose/buy all the Christmas cards/presents? even for his family? If so, stop doing it.

suzied Thu 27-Oct-16 09:28:13

Choose something nice for yourself- perfume / lingerie/ handbag /whatever - charge it to your joint account or get him to pay - tell him its your birthday present.

Daisygirl Thu 27-Oct-16 09:50:59

My husband used to buy me books for my birthday present, because his family too didn't make a thing of birthdays, and what's more he used to read the books first. After a bit I explained that I loved having birthday presents and cards and I would help him by giving him a list of things I would like and these did not include read books, irons or kettles! This has worked very well for 42 years but it did need explaining. As did the fact that although his mother did not care for jewellery I did and I expected an engagement ring. He is the most loving, thoughtful and kind man (I think in the world) but he needed telling. He then passed this on to our sons and my DILs have cleaned up!

thatbags Thu 27-Oct-16 09:51:52

Drop some heavy hints two or three months before your birthday about what you would like and buy yourself something and tell him it's your present from him. Some people just can't put themselves in someone else's shoes so it never crosses their mind that something that isn't important to them might be important else.

How does he react to the card and gift you give him? Is he offhand about it as if wondering why you bothered?

thatbags Thu 27-Oct-16 09:52:22 someone else.

radicalnan Thu 27-Oct-16 09:52:56

It is indeed very hurtful, especially as he went to such pains for his son.

To save him any trouble in future you can give him the option of your buying for yourself, at his expense, or not buying for anyone at all, and that would include you buying for him.

I loathe getting presents, I hate the feeling that someone has spent money on me and it just makes me feel bad, not sure why, I just do. Maybe he feels the same way and would refer that you did not buy for him?

As for Christmas, it stinks !!! Why on a day appointed by other people should I have to spend money on pointless least birthdays are personal.

The whole gift thing is a minefield and has got out of hand I think, gone are the days when a thoughtful token or much needed pair of socks was adequate and welcome. Now it is all hyped and I hate it.

WendyBT Thu 27-Oct-16 09:57:27

I have never received a card or a present from my husband in 38 years, for birthday or Chrustmas. I'm okay with it.