Author Topic: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?  (Read 6134 times)

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LifeOnPluto

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #15 on: December 18, 2011, 09:30:34 PM »
2 mitigating factors to consider when reading my answer...I don't have kids and won't be having them (didn't want them) and I'm a "it takes a village" type person. Having said that, I *still* think this should be your sister's and BIL's hill to die on. Her MIL has a history of overstepping and wanting to parent their kid. Playing Santa is traditionally the role a parent takes. I can see why Sis doesn't want to give her MIL an inch when it comes to this issue as she'll try to take a mile.

And FWIW, I think your mom should stop giving Santa gifts too. Sounds like grandparents having a problem with passing the torch of parenting onto their kids and being unwilling to take on the new role of grandparents who have to step back a little. One other mitigating factor with me...my grandparents raised me as much as and at times more than my mother did yet they never did this sort of thing. They deferred to her in such matters. This is one of those situations where I think that etiquette and tradition are clear and for good reason.

I agree with Sway. I think your desire for having "just you and your DH" be Santa is completely valid. But on that basis, it seems unfair to allow one grandmother to "also be Santa" whilst banning the other grandmother from the same thing.

weeblewobble

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #16 on: December 18, 2011, 09:35:36 PM »


If once she gets yes to the toy pony she , starts negotiating back up "well I will give her the toy pony at the petting zoo " or toy pony becomes 100 toy some life sized , then I think sticking with no is appropriate.

I can see this happening very easily.

Judah

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #17 on: December 18, 2011, 10:11:49 PM »
I'm with Toots on this one.  My parents got to be Santa with their kids (or not, we didn't do Santa growing up), now DH and I are Santa for ours.  Lucky for us, none of our parents are the interfering types and would never dream of over-stepping in this way.
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Grape

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #18 on: December 19, 2011, 01:42:14 AM »
A compromise might be for each grandparent to be able to give a stocking or wooden shoe (even if it's late for St. Nickolas Day) in addition to their regular presents. That way they can do the "small extra goodies" without going overboard, and the parents are in charge of the major Santa presents.

sparksals

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #19 on: December 19, 2011, 01:54:28 AM »
This is a real hot button for me.

Me and my DH are Santa, and I shut MIL down when she wanted to have a stocking at her house. Nope, I said, as nicely as possible. Here is how we're doing Santa, and I'm sorry to say that you're not part of it.

It's not my fault that she didn't "get" the whole Santa idea when her kids were little, shortly after she moved to the U.S.

I've been waiting my whole life to be Santa, and nobody else gets to.

I wouldn't allow my own mother to have stuff at her house as labeled "from Santa."

I do think that redirecting Grandma to some other thing would be smart, but I'd be absolutely rigid on this. I'd be up before the kid, and anything that showed up as being from Santa, but not being mine, would be carried into the other room and hidden. And if my DH couldn't do it, I'd be the one to say to her in the morning, "You are ignoring me, and I will not let you horn in on MY moments as the mommy." And I'd make my DH stand behind me and nod firmly.

I'd even be saying, "I am the mother. You are not. Do not interfere in my territory, or you will not see us for moments like this."

In fact, I might be completely revamping the Christmas plans, and saying to MIL, "Since we can't trust you to butt out of Santa, and leave our traditions alone, we will not be here on Christmas until late in the day."

I wondered if you would chime in on this, Toots.  I remember the thread from last year. 

FWIW, I agree with you.   I think that mom and dad have first dibs on Santa.  Period.  End of story.  What is a bit different about *this* situation is the OP's sister allows her own mom to give gifts from Santa, but not the MIL.  That is not right.

OP - I think you should tell your sister about the hypocrisy... double standard.  If she doesn't allow MIL to give gifts from Santa, then your mom can't either.  I get that your sister is setting boundaries with an overbearing MIL, but the boundaries and rules have to be the same across the board. 

I also think a parent has every right to dictate to prevent excessive gift giving.  Parents have a job to do and GP's must respect what they want to teach their children.

rashea

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #20 on: December 19, 2011, 10:42:06 AM »
Could the MIL run gifts past your Sis? Some way of letting her in just a bit, without letting her take over? If not, then she really needs to look at the double standard, because that's a lot of drama waiting to happen.
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klm75

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #21 on: December 19, 2011, 12:30:32 PM »
FWIW, I agree with you.   I think that mom and dad have first dibs on Santa.  Period.  End of story.  What is a bit different about *this* situation is the OP's sister allows her own mom to give gifts from Santa, but not the MIL.  That is not right.

OP - I think you should tell your sister about the hypocrisy... double standard.  If she doesn't allow MIL to give gifts from Santa, then your mom can't either.  I get that your sister is setting boundaries with an overbearing MIL, but the boundaries and rules have to be the same across the board. 

I also think a parent has every right to dictate to prevent excessive gift giving.  Parents have a job to do and GP's must respect what they want to teach their children.

I can't really see how this unfair or hypocrisy.  Fair does not always mean equal.  One Grandmother is able to gift with in reason and follow the young family's traditions, she gets to participate.  The other Grandmother wants to make it all about her wants, she does not get to participate.  Some people if you give an inch, they will take the whole mile.  We have very similar differences in our extended families, luckily I had MIL's number before kids came along and built our own traditions.  She still surrounded our first Christmas with baby in hissy fits because we wouldn't do things her way.

camlan

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2011, 12:50:23 PM »
This is a real hot button for me.

Me and my DH are Santa, and I shut MIL down when she wanted to have a stocking at her house. Nope, I said, as nicely as possible. Here is how we're doing Santa, and I'm sorry to say that you're not part of it.

It's not my fault that she didn't "get" the whole Santa idea when her kids were little, shortly after she moved to the U.S.

I've been waiting my whole life to be Santa, and nobody else gets to.

I wouldn't allow my own mother to have stuff at her house as labeled "from Santa."

I do think that redirecting Grandma to some other thing would be smart, but I'd be absolutely rigid on this. I'd be up before the kid, and anything that showed up as being from Santa, but not being mine, would be carried into the other room and hidden. And if my DH couldn't do it, I'd be the one to say to her in the morning, "You are ignoring me, and I will not let you horn in on MY moments as the mommy." And I'd make my DH stand behind me and nod firmly.

I'd even be saying, "I am the mother. You are not. Do not interfere in my territory, or you will not see us for moments like this."

In fact, I might be completely revamping the Christmas plans, and saying to MIL, "Since we can't trust you to butt out of Santa, and leave our traditions alone, we will not be here on Christmas until late in the day."

While I don't agree 100% with Toots about Santa and grandparents, I do agree 100% with her methods.

If this is a serious issue with the parents, they need to set clear-cut guidelines for the grandparents, and have appropriate consequences follow if the guidelines/rules aren't followed.

What struck me in the OP was that the word "No" was never said. It isn't rude to say no. You don't have to come up with nice phrasing. Sometimes the best, quickest, most efficient way of getting your message across is simply to say no. "We're not comfortable with that" isn't "No." It can easily be interpreted as "We're not comfortable with that, so you can keep pushing until you find the level of discomfort that will make us say 'Stop!'"
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Giggity

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #23 on: December 19, 2011, 12:55:45 PM »
Where I'm from, parents are Santa. However, I do not feel that an inequity is fair. So either you and your husband be Santa, or all the grandparents get to be Santa. You can't say, "My mother and father get to be Santa with us, but your parents don't." That's unfair on the face of it.
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weeblewobble

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2011, 03:06:35 PM »
This is a real hot button for me.

Me and my DH are Santa, and I shut MIL down when she wanted to have a stocking at her house. Nope, I said, as nicely as possible. Here is how we're doing Santa, and I'm sorry to say that you're not part of it.

It's not my fault that she didn't "get" the whole Santa idea when her kids were little, shortly after she moved to the U.S.

I've been waiting my whole life to be Santa, and nobody else gets to.

I wouldn't allow my own mother to have stuff at her house as labeled "from Santa."

I do think that redirecting Grandma to some other thing would be smart, but I'd be absolutely rigid on this. I'd be up before the kid, and anything that showed up as being from Santa, but not being mine, would be carried into the other room and hidden. And if my DH couldn't do it, I'd be the one to say to her in the morning, "You are ignoring me, and I will not let you horn in on MY moments as the mommy." And I'd make my DH stand behind me and nod firmly.

I'd even be saying, "I am the mother. You are not. Do not interfere in my territory, or you will not see us for moments like this."

In fact, I might be completely revamping the Christmas plans, and saying to MIL, "Since we can't trust you to butt out of Santa, and leave our traditions alone, we will not be here on Christmas until late in the day."

While I don't agree 100% with Toots about Santa and grandparents, I do agree 100% with her methods.

If this is a serious issue with the parents, they need to set clear-cut guidelines for the grandparents, and have appropriate consequences follow if the guidelines/rules aren't followed.

What struck me in the OP was that the word "No" was never said. It isn't rude to say no. You don't have to come up with nice phrasing. Sometimes the best, quickest, most efficient way of getting your message across is simply to say no. "We're not comfortable with that" isn't "No." It can easily be interpreted as "We're not comfortable with that, so you can keep pushing until you find the level of discomfort that will make us say 'Stop!'"

That is a really good point.  I may mention this to Sis.

mkkristen

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2011, 06:23:14 PM »
The MIL not being allowed and mother being allowed to play Santa is clouding everyone's judgement--the MIL doesn't want to just give one small thing from Santa--she wants to give a huge pile of presents from Santa is what it sounds like to me. And she can't be trusted that if Sis says fine, you can give one small gift under $25 from Santa--the MIL would probably just do what she wanted--she might just get her whatever she originally planned or "misunderstand" and get 6 presents that equal up to $25 and claim that she thought she could spend $25 and get as many as she wanted. The mother on the other hand can limit herself to 1 small thing and isn't overstepping the boundaries.

weeblewobble

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #26 on: December 21, 2011, 06:30:20 AM »
Well, it's been resolved, sort of.

Sis and BIL decided that while they (OK, Sis) are not comfortable with MIL playing Santa and going overboard, they can't prevent MIL from giving Babydoll gifts in MIL's own home. (They aren't assuming. They've already been informed of the number of gifts MIL has purchased.  She went overboard)  Making declarations about who is allowed and who isn't would cause too many hurt feelings, in their opinion.  Sis concedes that she never outright told MIL, "No." which was a mistake on her part.  In the future, when this comes up, she will take a firmer stance.

Sis and BIL have decided that Babydoll will open as many presents as they have time for on Christmas morning, and then, at the time that they have informed MIL they have to leave in order to make it to our family celebration on time, they will leave, even if there are presents left to open.  Even if MIL objects, which she will.  This is one of Sis's chief concerns, being late for our side's events, and this solution addresses that.  Sis is still not happy with the situation and she and BIL agree that they will spend future Christmas Eve's at home.
« Last Edit: December 21, 2011, 06:32:56 AM by weeblewobble »

sparksals

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #27 on: December 21, 2011, 10:55:10 AM »
Sounds like a good compromise for the time being and gives them time to set boundaries for the future.  Lesson learned from this, I suppose, is clear communication is key. 

Ceallach

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #28 on: December 21, 2011, 08:04:26 PM »
Well, it's been resolved, sort of.

Sis and BIL decided that while they (OK, Sis) are not comfortable with MIL playing Santa and going overboard, they can't prevent MIL from giving Babydoll gifts in MIL's own home. (They aren't assuming. They've already been informed of the number of gifts MIL has purchased.  She went overboard)  Making declarations about who is allowed and who isn't would cause too many hurt feelings, in their opinion.  Sis concedes that she never outright told MIL, "No." which was a mistake on her part.  In the future, when this comes up, she will take a firmer stance.

Sis and BIL have decided that Babydoll will open as many presents as they have time for on Christmas morning, and then, at the time that they have informed MIL they have to leave in order to make it to our family celebration on time, they will leave, even if there are presents left to open.  Even if MIL objects, which she will.  This is one of Sis's chief concerns, being late for our side's events, and this solution addresses that.  Sis is still not happy with the situation and she and BIL agree that they will spend future Christmas Eve's at home.

It sounds like they're resigned to the situation, which is good - hopefully no xmas day conflicts! And hopefully a better plan for next year. 

I do feel for babydoll a bit though.  Kids don't want to spend hours opening gifts, they want to stop and play with them and enjoy them too!   I hope she doesn't spend the morning rushing through pulling off paper and then jumping into the car to the next engagement. 
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Just Lori

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Re: Who gets to "claim" the Santa gifts?
« Reply #29 on: December 21, 2011, 09:25:08 PM »
When my kids were little, my parents came to spend Christmas with us.  When it came time to bring out the Santa gifts, my parents also brought out the gifts they brought, as well as the gifts my brother and sister-in-law sent.  The extra gifts weren't specifically Santa gifts, but when they were combined with the Santa gifts, they filled our little family room.  The girls were blown away when they came downstairs and found their floor covered with presents.  They understood that some were from Santa, some from Grandma and Grandpa and some from Aunt and Uncle, but they still were awed by the sheer amount of presents.  They had a great time opening up everything, and everyone had a great day.

Fast forward to the next year, when the out-of-town group wasn't expected until after Christmas.  The girls knew in their brains that they were receiving only Santa presents, but their minds remembered the gift extravaganza from the year before.  Even we, the parents, were a little dismayed at how tiny our gift spread looked without all the extras.  I mean, they still enjoyed their Christmas, but when you're 4 years old and you can only remember the Christmas from last year, it's hard to keep it all in perspective.

I wonder if the OP could tell MIL that she doens't want her child to think that every Christmas is going to be a present explosion?  If you want to keep things real at Christmas, it's probably good to start as you mean to go on.