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Real life MMD: Should I stop age inappropriate gifts?

Former_MSE_Penelope Posts: 536 Forumite
edited 4 January 2012 at 1:57PM in MoneySaving polls
Money Moral Dilemma: Should I stop age inappropriate gifts?

Last Christmas, my sister-in law gave my then 5-month-old son a toy for ages 3-6 years. This year, a Formula 1 car for ages 4+. Her son is 4, his birthday is in December and it's obvious she's recycling gifts. That's not a problem, but the gifts are inappropriate. Should I tell her to stop or keep the peace?
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  • Dame
    Dame Posts: 16 Forumite
    He's too little to realise - just put them in a cupboard for when he's old enough. What's the problem?
  • whosforachat
    Or pass them on on another kid's birthday. No point spending unnecessarily.
  • pjaj
    pjaj Posts: 117 Forumite
    First Post First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    I agree with te first two replies. What's the problem? There's no point in possibly creating ill will over this one.
    Sent from my abacus.
  • 3400581
    3400581 Posts: 20 Forumite
    Simples really. Just tell her that you had to keep them from him because they were for older children and that the manufacturers put age guidance on to stop young children swallowing/choking on small parts. Ask her to check the age guidance in future so it is safe for him to play with, she can't cause a fuss about that
  • auntie_sal
    I can see the point that you probably take time to select a gift for her children that is appropriate, and to be honest at this point you start to think you may as well not buy for her children but instead use the money to get a present that you know your son would like. As this has happened before, I think I would say to her it seems waste of money when the children get an unsuitable present so perhaps we should just spend the extra on our own and not buy for each others. But I suppose it depends on whether you know if your sister- in-law will take offence or not.
  • shellsuit
    shellsuit Posts: 24,749 Forumite
    First Post Photogenic First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    We've had the same for our little man and it's not a problem at all. The gifts just get put away until he is ready/old enough to play with them.
    Tank fly boss walk jam nitty gritty...
  • FelinePrincess
    Just keep them for a few years (or re-gift if your short of spaces), she probably didn't even realise.. and she is clearly a MSEr at heart re-cycling them gifts ;)
  • kasylia
    kasylia Posts: 158 Forumite
    Mum was always telling me to be grateful for whatever I get so I learned: Don't look a gift horse in the mouth. A gift is a gift - and these will actually be useful after few years.
  • Cabbagewhite
    I agree with the posts that say put the toys away until they are old enough. I would also point out that your son will probably get some fun out of a remote control car with you working it for him. Whilst he is still quite young to have the dexterity to do it himself, you will find as he gets older that you will have to work the so called age appropriate toys for him anyway. I think some manufacturers have funny ideas of the capabilities of children. With children under 3 years the age category relates to choking/harming properties of the toy. Over 3 years it should be more to do with ability. My children are 26, 13, 9 and 6 - I also have a grandchild of 11 months, so I consider I have some experience of this. Some toys can be enjoyed regardless of age as long as the child is fully supervised at all times (by me!).

    I would say far better a toy to grow in to, than one that is far to young (which you will also get as your son gets older). She may not be recycling gifts, but may be buying a similar toy to one which her son enjoyed. My nieces are similar ages to my eldest two girls, I always bought them something similar to what my own children enjoyed (now they get money - not dissimilar lol).
  • Ebenezer_Screwj
    Tell her the gifts are unsuitable for a baby then either recycle them back to her or donate them to a charity shop.
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