Boyfriend too generous with kids

spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
Has anyone read the Five Love Languages? My bf is a gift giver. That's how he shows his love. With everyone he cares about, including me and my kids.

But he takes it to an extreme. (He's just kind of "different" in many ways, but great nevertheless.) Every single time he sees my kids, he buys them stuff. And I mean, serious stuff. If we just stop over at his place to say hi, he might have 2 bikes waiting for them! He has bought them scooters, video games, a Play Station, stuffed animals, tents, complete bedding sets (comforter, pillows, sheets, lamps, etc.), remote control cars, a microscope, board games, electronic games, on and on, plus cupcakes, ice cream cakes, pints of ice cream, bags of popcorn, etc. etc.:shock:

I always ask him not to but he finds a way around it. I can't be mad because he's just being nice...even though he's not listening to me. But it's getting out of hand.

Yesterday, i was out with my kids, near his house and they missed him and wanted to stop by and say hi. So I texted him and he told me not to bring them because he wasn't expecting them and he didn't have anything for them. And I was shocked. So then he goes through his closet and says he dug up some old DVDs that belonged to his daughter and he would give them those...so OK, bring them.:-|

So I told him no, we weren't coming over...not because I was mad but because by the time he texted me back to tell me he found the DVDs and I could bring them, I'd already started back toward home. And he told me to bring them tomorrow...and he'd be more prepared.

Well, something is wrong with this! He feels he can't see them unless he has something for them. Maybe he was conditioned to do this...or maybe read it in Steve Harvey's book. I don't know. But this feeling is like deeply imprinted on his brain. But it has to stop...because:

1) I don't want my kids getting spoiled.

2) I don't want them seeing him as a gravy train (I want them to like him just because he's mommy's friend and a nice person)

3) I don't want him to feel pressure to do this

4) Our relationship probably won't last as he will have to move away...and I don't want them expecting this of every friend I bring around

His intentions are totally honorable. He does this with his daughter too (but she has come to expect it and doesn't appreciate it...same with his neices and nephews). But I need to tell him that we're coming by tonight and there had better not be any toys or snacks in his apartment! And I need to say it preferably in a text and asap because he will be going shopping momentarily!

Like I said, he's kind of a unique person and doesn't really operate like the rest of the world (at least he doesn't operate like I do). LOL I don't want to hurt his feelings; it makes him happy to do this. But come on...
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Comments

  • PoPo Registered Users Posts: 2,607
    My concern is that he's not LISTENING TO YOU. You're the parent. You get to say when your kids get a treat.

    I would be mean about it. But that's just how I operate. :) I would say, "Stop buying my kids stuff. I'm 100% serious. When we get there tonight, we just want to hang out and enjoy your company."
    3c/4a
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    Po wrote: »
    My concern is that he's not LISTENING TO YOU. You're the parent. You get to say when your kids get a treat.

    I would be mean about it. But that's just how I operate. :) I would say, "Stop buying my kids stuff. I'm 100% serious. When we get there tonight, we just want to hang out and enjoy your company."

    Yeah, I know he's not listening to me. But ugh, I just can't be mad at him because his intentions are good. How can you chew someone out after when they're going out of their way to be nice? But you're right...

    And i've said similar things before. So he might skip one opportunity to buy them something and get them twice as much the next time. grrr
  • MunchyMunchy Registered Users Posts: 5,206 Curl Novice
    I would just sit him down and explain the reasons you don't want him giving too much, just like you did here. If it were me, I certainly wouldn't feel offended by the reasons you feel it's important for him to back away from the gift-giving.
  • M2LRM2LR Registered Users Posts: 8,630 Curl Connoisseur
    Po wrote: »
    My concern is that he's not LISTENING TO YOU. You're the parent. You get to say when your kids get a treat.

    I would be mean about it. But that's just how I operate. :) I would say, "Stop buying my kids stuff. I'm 100% serious. When we get there tonight, we just want to hang out and enjoy your company."

    Exactly.

    I'd be more upset that you've told him more than once to stop and he hasn't. I would have to be mean, or more firm about it as well. "I know you mean well, but you need to stop. NOW."

    Your concerns are totally valid, they will expect something every time they see him, and they will likely ask if you start dating someone else, 'How come he never brings us presents like so and so did?' Your kids run the risk of not appreciating it just like his daughter does. Despite your best intentions, you know that it will happen - it happens to any one who continually receives things for not doing work, not working to pay for it themselves, etc.

    But, in all honesty, I'd be more pissed that he's not listening to me. They are MY kids.
    :rambo:
  • NetGNetG Registered Users Posts: 8,116
    I'm with Po and M2LR.

    He's disrespecting you. You are a beautiful, intelligent, strong woman with a career of your own. I think the disrespect needs to stop, and even if he doesn't see it that way, I'd make sure it's clear to him that's what it actually is.

    I would also be worried about the money situation. You've talked about how important another person's finances are to you, you don't want to be pulled down into a hole, etc.... He's career military? Salaries are public knowledge, and while very livable, they do not support an extravagant lifestyle. I'd be concerned.
    The pews never miss a sermon but that doesn't get them one step closer to Heaven.
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  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    NetG wrote: »
    I'm with Po and M2LR.

    He's disrespecting you. You are a beautiful, intelligent, strong woman with a career of your own. I think the disrespect needs to stop, and even if he doesn't see it that way, I'd make sure it's clear to him that's what it actually is.

    I would also be worried about the money situation. You've talked about how important another person's finances are to you, you don't want to be pulled down into a hole, etc.... He's career military? Salaries are public knowledge, and while very livable, they do not support an extravagant lifestyle. I'd be concerned.

    He actually makes a great living. He makes almost three times the average salary out here. He's close to retirement and has really risen through the ranks. He recently had a huge, unexpected expense come up, and he was able to handle it all, effortlessly, paying cash. He drives a very expensive car and lots of other 'toys.' And he's got a big promotion coming up in August. Money isn't really an issue.

    I don't take it as disrespect in any way. I've never angrily or forcefully told him never to buy my kids. It's the same thing I go through with my mother. I tell her, "no, they don't need anymore dolls, toys, clothes." And a week later, there is a huge box on my front porch. Both he and my mother love and respect me and value my career, etc.

    People like this are just trying to be nice. And I get that. Their kindness would never make me angry. I just want to, very nicely, explain that these gestures can backfire and to ease up a little.
  • PoPo Registered Users Posts: 2,607
    What about suggesting that you guys do activities that require little to no money? He gets to "spoil" the kids without spending money on a tangible item.
    3c/4a
  • RedCatWavesRedCatWaves Registered Users Posts: 31,259 Curl Connoisseur
    Well, something is wrong with this!


    Yeah, many things are wrong with this, not the least of which is that he's disrespecting your wishes...over and over and over and over...
  • M2LRM2LR Registered Users Posts: 8,630 Curl Connoisseur
    Well, something is wrong with this!


    Yeah, many things are wrong with this, not the least of which is that he's disrespecting your wishes...over and over and over and over...

    This...

    And while you've come here to complain about him time and time again, you always justify why he's doing something.

    I don't want the kids to be spoiled....but he's so kind.
    I think he spends too much money on his daughter...but he makes such a great living!

    I dunno. You complain in one sentence, then 100% give him a pass for doing it. Makes no sense to me.
    :rambo:
  • JosephineJosephine Registered Users Posts: 14,408 Curl Connoisseur
    Po wrote: »
    My concern is that he's not LISTENING TO YOU. You're the parent. You get to say when your kids get a treat.

    I would be mean about it. But that's just how I operate. :) I would say, "Stop buying my kids stuff. I'm 100% serious. When we get there tonight, we just want to hang out and enjoy your company."


    I agree. My ex was like this and I found it inconsiderate and disrespectful that he wasn't listening to me, good intentions or not.
  • EngelEngel Registered Users Posts: 9
    I don't have much to add other than that I agree with you op.
    It just sounds to me like he's trying to be nice and I don't understand how that can come of as him being disrespectful.

    But I do also agree that he needs to stop with all that gift giving though.
  • Cali ChikCali Chik Registered Users Posts: 1,494
    I don't think he is intentionally being disrespectful and I wouldn't even approach him about it from that angle but he does sound like he needs help. Ppl who are that generous to the point of being extreme usually have sone underlined emotional problem that stems from childhood. For whatever reason he feels he can buy love or get ppl to like him. The problem is that h can't build strong relationships that way because they never like you as a person just what u cab do FOR them. I'd come at him like I was concerned for HIM. not like you are chastising him for his behavior.


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  • NetGNetG Registered Users Posts: 8,116
    Engel wrote: »
    I don't have much to add other than that I agree with you op.
    It just sounds to me like he's trying to be nice and I don't understand how that can come of as him being disrespectful.

    But I do also agree that he needs to stop with all that gift giving though.

    Because he has repeatedly ignored her express wishes. The gift giving itself isn't the problem. The passive aggressive disrespect of Spidey's word and choice to do what he wants regardless is disrespectful and inappropriate.


    Sent from my "smart"phone. Please excuse typos!
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  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    M2LR wrote: »
    Well, something is wrong with this!


    Yeah, many things are wrong with this, not the least of which is that he's disrespecting your wishes...over and over and over and over...

    This...

    And while you've come here to complain about him time and time again, you always justify why he's doing something.

    I don't want the kids to be spoiled....but he's so kind.
    I think he spends too much money on his daughter...but he makes such a great living!

    I dunno. You complain in one sentence, then 100% give him a pass for doing it. Makes no sense to me.

    When have I ever complained about him?? I think he's great.

    I never said I think he spends too much money on his daughter! His money, his daughter, his business. She's blessed to have him.
  • M2LRM2LR Registered Users Posts: 8,630 Curl Connoisseur
    M2LR wrote: »


    Yeah, many things are wrong with this, not the least of which is that he's disrespecting your wishes...over and over and over and over...

    This...

    And while you've come here to complain about him time and time again, you always justify why he's doing something.

    I don't want the kids to be spoiled....but he's so kind.
    I think he spends too much money on his daughter...but he makes such a great living!

    I dunno. You complain in one sentence, then 100% give him a pass for doing it. Makes no sense to me.

    When have I ever complained about him?? I think he's great.

    I never said I think he spends too much money on his daughter! His money, his daughter, his business. She's blessed to have him.

    Maybe I am confusing him with someone you dated previously, I remember you posting about someone with possible financial issues, and spending money on his daughter/school.

    I dunno. He's being disrespectful time and time again, not listening to you. That would bother me, esp if it's only been like 6 months, right? You think this would change if you guys were to be more serious?
    :rambo:
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    Cali Chik wrote: »
    I don't think he is intentionally being disrespectful and I wouldn't even approach him about it from that angle but he does sound like he needs help. Ppl who are that generous to the point of being extreme usually have sone underlined emotional problem that stems from childhood. For whatever reason he feels he can buy love or get ppl to like him. The problem is that h can't build strong relationships that way because they never like you as a person just what u cab do FOR them. I'd come at him like I was concerned for HIM. not like you are chastising him for his behavior.


    Sent from my iPhone using CurlTalk

    You might be right.

    Let me restate: nothing about this feels or is disrespectful!

    I recently did him a favor. It was a minor inconvenience but hey, that's what you do when you are in a relationship. So he went out and bought me a Nook!

    He accidentally broke something of mine (complete accident) and then insisted on buying me a $900 tv to make up for it (which I managed to get him to return after a big to do in the store).

    The thing is, I'm already crazy about him and so are my kids.

    Ugh, he just texted me, asking me to bring him something tonight which costs $12 and will take me 10 minutes out of my way. No biggie. But I'm almost afraid to go over there tonight and see what my thank you will look like...:-o

    He's got a very big heart and I think he really cares about me and my kids. And I genuinely think it makes him feel GOOD to do this. But I am not like this at all and I just don't want the kids getting the wrong idea.
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    M2LR wrote: »
    M2LR wrote: »

    This...

    And while you've come here to complain about him time and time again, you always justify why he's doing something.

    I don't want the kids to be spoiled....but he's so kind.
    I think he spends too much money on his daughter...but he makes such a great living!

    I dunno. You complain in one sentence, then 100% give him a pass for doing it. Makes no sense to me.

    When have I ever complained about him?? I think he's great.

    I never said I think he spends too much money on his daughter! His money, his daughter, his business. She's blessed to have him.

    Maybe I am confusing him with someone you dated previously, I remember you posting about someone with possible financial issues, and spending money on his daughter/school.

    I dunno. He's being disrespectful time and time again, not listening to you. That would bother me, esp if it's only been like 6 months, right? You think this would change if you guys were to be more serious?

    Oh, yes. That was my last bf...serious money problems, didn't shovel my snow, wouldn't meet my exhusband. LOL A nice guy but yeah, a few irreconcilable issues.

    This is a new guy...right 6 months.

    No, I don't see it changing, even if we became more serious. He loves to spend money. It's the way he shows his love/interest/care. He buys his parents, daughter and other relatives all kinds of great gifts, too. Just who he is. (And it's a nice change, for me, from the last bf who was too broke to hardly ever buy me anything or take me anywhere.)

    I also think he believes all women expect and demand lots of gifts for themselves and their kids.

    I don't. Gift-giving is my least well-spoken love language (to continue with the theory presented in the book). I'd take any of the four over this, if I had a choice. But he is who he is. And I don't want to change him. I just want him to dial it back a little with the kids. But he can spoil *me* rotten, if he feels he must! LOL
  • PartyHairPartyHair Registered Users Posts: 7,713
    Tell him, and teach your kids to tell him, "No thank you. That is so generous, but it's just too much" and stick to it. Walk out of his house empty handed. If he brings it to your house, give it to him to take back home or to the store or whatever.

    If this really makes you uncomfortable there are ways to stop it, but you HAVE to be direct with him until he gets it.
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  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    PartyHair wrote: »
    Tell him, and teach your kids to tell him, "No thank you. That is so generous, but it's just too much" and stick to it. Walk out of his house empty handed. If he brings it to your house, give it to him to take back home or to the store or whatever.

    If this really makes you uncomfortable there are ways to stop it, but you HAVE to be direct with him until he gets it.

    Hmmmm...maybe I *shouldn't* be feeling uncomfortable about it? Maybe I should graciously accept his gifts and his generosity and be done with it? I know his intentions are good.

    Extra toys never hurt anyone.
  • M2LRM2LR Registered Users Posts: 8,630 Curl Connoisseur
    PartyHair wrote: »
    Tell him, and teach your kids to tell him, "No thank you. That is so generous, but it's just too much" and stick to it. Walk out of his house empty handed. If he brings it to your house, give it to him to take back home or to the store or whatever.

    If this really makes you uncomfortable there are ways to stop it, but you HAVE to be direct with him until he gets it.

    Hmmmm...maybe I *shouldn't* be feeling uncomfortable about it? Maybe I should graciously accept his gifts and his generosity and be done with it? I know his intentions are good.

    Extra toys never hurt anyone.

    If this is truly how you feel, then yes, let it go.
    :rambo:
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    Po wrote: »
    What about suggesting that you guys do activities that require little to no money? He gets to "spoil" the kids without spending money on a tangible item.

    So true. We do go out together every weekend I have them. We've gone to Chuck E Cheese, the bounce houses, the playground, out to lunch, etc...plans to go to the zoo. They have an absolutel ball. And he finds it amusing.

    But yet, he still wants to buy them toys.

    When his daughter was little, he brought her a toy every night when he came home from work...
  • scrillsscrills Registered Users Posts: 6,700
    I'm going to take a slightly different approach...


    Telling him to stop may not help. This behavior started some where for some reason. Something happened in his life to make him think he had to give people stuff. Perhaps you can try having a conversation with him to uncover what is was and address the fear he is trying to prevent by giving gifts.

    In other words, let him know that if he doesn't give a gift, what happened before won't happen in this situation.
  • PoPo Registered Users Posts: 2,607
    Po wrote: »
    What about suggesting that you guys do activities that require little to no money? He gets to "spoil" the kids without spending money on a tangible item.

    So true. We do go out together every weekend I have them. We've gone to Chuck E Cheese, the bounce houses, the playground, out to lunch, etc...plans to go to the zoo. They have an absolutel ball. And he finds it amusing.

    But yet, he still wants to buy them toys.

    When his daughter was little, he brought her a toy every night when he came home from work...

    Jeeze Louise! My dad used to collect Happy Meal toys for the THREE of us. Cheapo! :angry3:
    3c/4a
  • PoPo Registered Users Posts: 2,607
    scrills wrote: »
    I'm going to take a slightly different approach...


    Telling him to stop may not help. This behavior started some where for some reason. Something happened in his life to make him think he had to give people stuff. Perhaps you can try having a conversation with him to uncover what is was and address the fear he is trying to prevent by giving gifts.

    In other words, let him know that if he doesn't give a gift, what happened before won't happen in this situation.

    Good idea! Even if you don't care about the toys and such, spidey, this would be good information to know.
    3c/4a
  • spiderlashes5000spiderlashes5000 Registered Users Posts: 17,898 Curl Virtuoso
    Po wrote: »
    scrills wrote: »
    I'm going to take a slightly different approach...


    Telling him to stop may not help. This behavior started some where for some reason. Something happened in his life to make him think he had to give people stuff. Perhaps you can try having a conversation with him to uncover what is was and address the fear he is trying to prevent by giving gifts.

    In other words, let him know that if he doesn't give a gift, what happened before won't happen in this situation.

    Good idea! Even if you don't care about the toys and such, spidey, this would be good information to know.

    It seems strange to me, too. But apparently, there are people like this, according to the book. It's not a pathology in any way. Some people just express themselves in that way.

    He and I have talked about it before and he just feels when you care, you buy people nice stuff to make them feel special.

    In his case, it just seems a tad excessive. (But that's just how it seems to me, who is admittedly not a gift person.)

    And I notice he spends a lot on other people but they don't reciprocate. He spent a fortune on Christmas gifts and the one I gave him was the only one he received. :scratch:

    I don't think he cares, though. I believe he genuinely enjoys it. He's not the type to do something he doesn't want to do.

    The more I think about it, the more I feel like I would be wrong to try to stop him from showing kindness the way he wants to. I'm just going to leave it alone.
  • CheetaraCheetara Registered Users Posts: 2,182 Curl Neophyte
    I think he's undermining your parenting too. I don't understand why you've convinced yourself that's ok, even if you don't have a problem with the actual gift giving.
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  • jenny curljenny curl Registered Users Posts: 1,814
    The only part of this whole situation that rubs me the wrong way was when you spoke of the time when he told you and your kids not to stop by because he didn't have anything to give them. That right there signals an issue, IMHO. I would be taken back by that and want to analyze his reasons for being this way.

    Maybe I'm odd, but I don't find this behavior normal. I could see some random expensive gift giving from time to time with no special occasion being okay, but bringing to the extreme of telling you not to come over with your kids BECAUSE of it? I find that to be abnormal behavior and unacceptable if you two were to continue this relationship long-term.

    ETA: I noticed you have completely done a 360 from your first post to your most recent one in terms of how you viewed this behavior. What gives? Just curious.
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  • wild~hairwild~hair Registered Users Posts: 9,890 Curl Neophyte
    Cali Chik wrote: »
    I don't think he is intentionally being disrespectful and I wouldn't even approach him about it from that angle but he does sound like he needs help.

    You might be right.

    Let me restate: nothing about this feels or is disrespectful!

    I don't think it's necessarily coming from a place of disrespect. That is the result, however, because he's ignoring your express wishes.

    That you mom does this to you too gives me pause. Why do these people in your life think they can go against your express wishes?

    I would look to your method of communicating those wishes. My guess is you are not being as clear, direct and firm as you could be. You can do it without appearing ungrateful.
    Hmmmm...maybe I *shouldn't* be feeling uncomfortable about it? Maybe I should graciously accept his gifts and his generosity and be done with it? I know his intentions are good.

    Extra toys never hurt anyone.

    Wait, whoa! What happened to that itemized list from before? About the kids getting spoiled, etc.?

    You're being wishy washy, SL! :lol: I think I figured out why these people aren't listening to you!

    ETA: I like scrills idea of getting to the root of WHY he does this in the first place. Although I still think it takes two to tango …

    ETA2: I know you've talked yourself out of it, but I had to mention that giving a child a gift literally every time you see them is NOT, I repeat, NOT normal. There's something up with him.
  • LadyV69LadyV69 Registered Users Posts: 3,397
    I have to co-sign with those who stated that your BF isn't respecting your wishes and is undermining your parenting. Gifts here and there are okay, but giving them EVERY time he sees your children IS excessive. If your relationship doesn't last, do you really want your kids to expect gifts every time they see any future men you date? It's not a good precedent. And I also agree that your BF's behavior isn't normal and stems from some security and self-esteem issues if he feels that people won't like him if he doesn't give them gifts.
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  • scrillsscrills Registered Users Posts: 6,700
    yup, what PO and WH said.

    I am a gift giver my mom is a gift giver. We like to give gifts. It's part of who we are. also, I don't like receiving gifts. My level of gift giving is completely "normal"

    With that being said, there is still a reason "why" gifts are my language of choice. It's easier. It's less involved. I feel safer.

    I know you feel that there are just some people "like this", but as one of those people, I still think there is something more behind it all. Like Po, the story where he said no to coming over because he didn't have a gift is concerning.

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