Blended Families

Birthday question

DD1, and 2 of my nephews (turning 5 and 4) have birthdays this month.  We are planning on having a small get together for their birthday (12 people at most there).  The problem is, DSD also has a birthday this month (turning 12).  She will be at the get together, DH will not. Should I make an effort to include her birthday in this?  We are doing themes for the smaller kids with cupcakes and goody bags, etc and I'm not sure at what point I include/exclude her.  I'm trying to not make this about bio versus step but the age difference is throwing me off here.  Regardless of whether she gets themed cupcakes and a goody bag, she is getting a decent amount of money in a card. Suggestions?
Lilypie Kids Birthday tickersLilypie Fourth Birthday tickers

Re: Birthday question

  • gin9874gin9874
    Ancient Membership 250 Answers 1000 Comments 25 Love Its
    member

    Coming from someone who has a 13 yo DD and a 12 yo SD, I think you need to include her if you aren't having a separate celebration for just her. DD and SD still get themed birthdays cakes or cupcakes, but they pick them out. Usually something like flip-flop themed, peace sign, zebra print ect. DS and SD's birthdays are about 3 weeks apart. We host separate family celebrations for them usually 2 weeks apart. However, if your family is already getting together for 3 birthdays, I think it would be wrong to leave her out. Sure, she'll love the money but it would be more special for her if she maybe gets her own special cupcake and a goody bag made especially for her and then there is less chance for hurt feelings. All kids regardless of age want to celebrate their birthdays.

    DD(13),SD(12),SS(11),SS(9),DS(3)

  • Who is invited? If it is her other little kids then do something different and if it is family get her a cake too.

    As a side note I never understand the concept of giving kids this age a large amount of cash because it has the potential to cause all kinds of problems.
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • Unless you are throwing her a party at a different time, then it really IS about BIO vs STEP.  Because YOU (the STEPparent) cannot be bothered to throw her a celebratory event since her father isn't there, your just having her biofather throw money at her. 

    And at 12 - she will notice this.  

    image
  • I think a tiara maybe...a special cake..a happy birthday sign. She needs to be included. If I were her, I would feel shafted. Just find a special way to acknowledge her. Maybe a balloon bouquet with candy?
    BabyFruit Ticker Lilypie Angel and Memorial tickers
  • Do you normally do anything for her birthday? That in itself would set up some kind of expectation.

    And I would agree that if it's family, you should definitely include her. If it's friends of the younger kids, it might be more appropriate to find something else for her. But I would still acknowledge her in some small way if she will be at the party.
    http://whoaflow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/9.gif
    Bonus Mom to the Bean: June '06
  • As a former SM who had a teenager - she should have her own day.  At 12, I'm not so sure she would want to be included in a kiddie party.  If you do something nice for her and make a day just for her and she knows this, she won't feel slighted at the younger kid's party.

    And I suggest something more adult for her. Do a spa day (mani-pedi-makeover), shop, have a couple of her best friends over and do something girly and more young adult. 

    If you have her EOWE, just have this on the weekend closest to her birthday.

    "he offered her the world. she said she had her own" - poet Monique Duval
  • la79alla79al
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    member
    Okay, OP here.  Forgot to mention that the get together is at my dads house so it will be him and his wife, my brother and his family and my stepsister and her family.  Not sure that matters much since my dad has always treated SD as one of mine but it's not like I'm having DHs whole family there and acting like SD doesn't exist. As far as the cash, I know she will want spending money for camp this summer and if she uses her birthday money then we can't complain when she spends $30 on milkshakes.  Last year I tried to incorporate a chocolate theme for SSD into DD1s birthday theme and it didn't go too well. I think the problem was that I tried to do the same thing for each girl.  Since I haven't done anything for either girl yet, I guess I'll be able to look for stuff for SD to have treats too.
    Lilypie Kids Birthday tickersLilypie Fourth Birthday tickers
  • Another thought on the other side of the coin that I just thought of - and another thought to throw out there if you want to do it all together - my family on my mom's side has a ton of January birthdays.  I don't know what it is about Spring, but apparently my family gets frisky and has babies.  LOL!

    They would all get together from kids to adult and celebrate with a nice dinner in the evening and they would exchange presents.  The children had other birthday parties.

    It was kept kind of neutral.  No one got any special attention, it was pretty equal and always a good time. It's kind of died down now that all the kids are adults and the family keeps growing and splitting off, movint, etc.  

    But with DD and mom being a January baby, and within 5 days of each other, we celebrate their day together now in a similar fashion and then I will have a special day on her actual birthday for DD that's age appropriate. As she grows older it will involve kids her age.  

    "he offered her the world. she said she had her own" - poet Monique Duval
  • la79alla79al
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    member
    The party is going to be 4 kids under 6, SD and a bunch of adults.  It gets awkward. At Christmas, everyone was hanging out, having a good time and SD just sat on the couch.  She's too big to play with the kids but too young to really hang out with the adults.  Other problems are that the party is on our weekend closest to her birthday, we have plans for the other half of that weekend already and SD has no friends in our area (BM lives an hour away).  We are doing a camping trip on the other weekend we have her this month and I would love to just do a cake, etc there for her since at least her dad will be present for that but would it be strange to have this party close to her birthday but then wait to have anything for her birthday? 
    Lilypie Kids Birthday tickersLilypie Fourth Birthday tickers
  • It wouldn't be weird if she knows she has her own special day coming.  make an equally big day out of it as the younger kids.

    "he offered her the world. she said she had her own" - poet Monique Duval
  • image justj:
    It wouldn't be weird if she knows she has her own special day coming.nbsp; make an equally big day out of it as the younger kids.


    I agree. I would imagine she would appreciate knowing you made an effort to set aside a special time for her. At twelve, she may not express the appreciation... But it's better than her expressing resentment.
    http://whoaflow.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/11/9.gif
    Bonus Mom to the Bean: June '06
  • I'm gonna put on my b!tchypants and say if she isn't included that is just fd up. This is a party for the kids in the family who have birthdays this month. She is a kid. In the family. Who has a birthday this month. There is ZERO reason not to include her. None at all. I cannot believe this I even a question, and quite frankly I find it rather hateful. Perhaps it's awkward bc she feels like an outsider, and judging by this post it's clear that she would be right in her feelings. Son of a nutcracker this pisses me off. Include her. Make it special for ALL the kids.
  • Ask her what she would prefer.   Separate celebration?  Inclusion somehow?  Maybe do a little of both.  My SD would be embarrassed to be included in the younger kids' bday.  
    Trying to Conceive Ticker
  • image mccall0113:
    Ask her what she would prefer.   Separate celebration?  Inclusion somehow?  Maybe do a little of both.  My SD would be embarrassed to be included in the younger kids' bday.  

    This. Ask her what she would prefer. At 12 I would have been fine being included in a little kids party but my SD who is 9 would not. 



    Mom to Angels. Chemical Pregnancies 08/03, 04/04, 10/06, 12/21/10 -Gabriel with us for 6w 5d,BFP 5/25/11 -Jade with us for 5w 3d





    Mom to N 07/08/06, L 07/25/09, and S 05/14/12




    Stepmom to K 02/14/04 and A 12/17/04




    image

    image




    image
    Created by MyFitnessPal.com - Free Weight Loss Tools
  • gin9874gin9874
    Ancient Membership 250 Answers 1000 Comments 25 Love Its
    member
    Ok OP you are just making yourself sound worse. It's awkward with your SD being there with your family because of the age differences? What is different about that dynamic than in your own home where she is the only one that age. Also who cares if her BIO family isn't there? YOUR family is having a family birthday celebration. Therefore, you are making this a bio vs step thing. And it's the weekend closest to her birthday and you have other plans for the other part of the weekend....are you kidding me??? Also 12 is not grown....stop trying to make the kid grow up before she needs to. Our 12 yo and 13yo play with their younger siblings all the time and are not awkward at the parties for THEIR own siblings or cousins. The fact that you even describe a family get together that involves her as awkward also makes this a bio vs step thing.
    DD(13),SD(12),SS(11),SS(9),DS(3)

  • image la79al:
    Okay, OP here.nbsp; Forgot to mention that the get together is at my dads house so it will be him and his wife, my brother and his family and my stepsister and her family.nbsp; Not sure that matters much since my dad has always treated SD as one of mine but it's not like I'm having DHs whole family there and acting like SD doesn't exist. As far as the cash, I know she will want spending money fornbsp;camp this summer and if she uses her birthday money then we can't complain when she spends 30 on milkshakes.nbsp; Last year I tried to incorporate a chocolate theme for SSD into DD1s birthday theme and it didn't go too well.nbsp;I think the problem was that I tried to do the same thing for each girl.nbsp; Since I haven't done anything for either girl yet, I guess I'll be able to look for stuff for SD to have treats too.

    Honestly it is hard to not see this as a step versus bio. It is at your Dad's house and therefore why include your SD because it is not even her family right? And you tried to incorporate her stuff into your child's party last year but it did not go well. Why? What could have been suck a big deal that it would not work? And why not do something for each child and everyone gets both or has a choice? I have a 6yo boy and 4yo girl with the same birthday so they share a party every year and it is no big deal. Ice cream cake for one and cupcakes for the other or one gets vanilla and one chocolate...or the year DD wanted chocolate and DS wanted chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes. I have do not have an issue if I was giving fairy wings and swords to each kid.

    Any seriously giving her a was of cash to spend at camp? Yeah that is weird to me and one of those things I really believe will not happen with your own kid. I will embarrassingly admit that their were things I thought were a waste of money that I would not blink at now. I was not tryin to be an evil SM but I just see the light now that I have kids. She will absolutely remember that her Dad made her use her birthday gift for milkshakes and her SM had parties for her own kids where they got gifts from the whole family.
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • Can you invite one-two of her friends to go camping with you?  Or host a party where she lives so her friends can attend?  With the age difference, I can see how it would be hard to incorporate her, but you could say "we're doing a small family celebration on X day, what would you like to do for your birthday celebration?" and let her have a birthday sash and tiara, so she feels included at the joint party.

    My girls are 14 months apart - May 25th and July 13th - we have combined parties before, and are doing it again this year - that way they get a bigger party and everything is "equal."  This is before Skids come for their visit.  We will have SD2 on her 16th birthday and we're letting her choose what she wants to do - since she will be thousands of miles away from her friends.

  • Why won't your husband be there?

    Let your conscience be your guide!
  • image xmaryrickx:
    I'm gonna put on my b!tchypants and say if she isn't included that is just fd up. This is a party for the kids in the family who have birthdays this month. She is a kid. In the family. Who has a birthday this month. There is ZERO reason not to include her. None at all. I cannot believe this I even a question, and quite frankly I find it rather hateful. Perhaps it's awkward bc she feels like an outsider, and judging by this post it's clear that she would be right in her feelings. Son of a nutcracker this pisses me off. Include her. Make it special for ALL the kids.


    OP if you exclude her you are a selfish b!tch. There is no excuse for it.
    image



  • la79alla79al
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    member

    Ok, at our house, SD will play with her younger sisters.  When we get together with my dads family, the little girls are busy playing with their same age peers.  None of the adults have any contact with 11 year old girls so beyond 'hey how is school going', there's not a lot of conversations.  So maybe not awkward, but not terribly exciting for SD. 

    DH will not be at the get together because he is going to be at work and can't take off.  It really is supposed to be a laid back picnic sort of thing. 

    So she's not supposed to use her birthday money for her spending money at camp? That's just bizarre to me. 

    But seriously, relax guys.  I think we're just going to have cake and something special for SD when we go on our camping trip.  She's very excited about the trip so this will make it extra cool.  If I end up doing goody bags for the smaller kids for the upcoming get together, I will do one for SD, with more age appropriate stuff. 

    Lilypie Kids Birthday tickersLilypie Fourth Birthday tickers
  • I was your SD in my extended non blended family. All of my cousins were much older or much younger. I would have been incredibly hurt if we had done a family birthday thing for my birthday month and I wasn't included. Why can't she have both inclusion in the family party, at the same level as the others and a cake, celebration while camping?

    I think you really are ignoring the emotional ramifications of this.

    ETA this is made worse by the fact that one of the children being celebrated is your biodaughter. Do you really not see the issue here? Are you being purposefully obtuse???
  • ambrvanambrvan
    250 Answers 1000 Comments Fourth Anniversary 250 Love Its
    member
    Why have y'all already not planned something for her but planned something for your own DD together? Regardless or whether or not you decide to include her now, that makes it CLEAR that this is a step vs bio issue. You thought of your biochild first and as more important than your SD.

    But to fix the issue now... Duh include her! In fact, since it is a little kids' party, iinclude not be inappropriate to do something to include her now and then have a birthday dinner for her when her dad is home.

    I really don't see how you can NOT SEE the problem here.
  • image ambrvan:
    Why have y'all already not planned something for her but planned something for your own DD together? Regardless or whether or not you decide to include her now, that makes it CLEAR that this is a step vs bio issue. You thought of your biochild first and as more important than your SD.

    But to fix the issue now... Duh include her! In fact, since it is a little kids' party, iinclude not be inappropriate to do something to include her now and then have a birthday dinner for her when her dad is home.

    I really don't see how you can NOT SEE the problem here.

    But Ambvan don't you see? Her SD is not the same age and no one at OPs Dad's house talk to her when she is around anyway so why should they sing Happy Birthday to her? Besides her Dad will not even be here so why should OP care if the girls feelings are hurt if her DH is not there to witness it. And why would they give a seconds thought to her for her birthday anyway since she is not OPs kid anyway.

    OP, what are the other kids getting for their birthday?

    Are you sending her to camp because she begged to go and you do not need her to go because you would be home anyway and more than happy to watch her?
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • la79alla79al
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    member

    image Littlejen22:
    But Ambvan don't you see? Her SD is not the same age and no one at OPs Dad's house talk to her when she is around anyway so why should they sing Happy Birthday to her? Besides her Dad will not even be here so why should OP care if the girls feelings are hurt if her DH is not there to witness it. And why would they give a seconds thought to her for her birthday anyway since she is not OPs kid anyway. OP, what are the other kids getting for their birthday? Are you sending her to camp because she begged to go and you do not need her to go because you would be home anyway and more than happy to watch her?

    Get a grip.  Somehow this morphed from me asking to what extent I should attempt to include my 12 year old step daughter at a preschool birthday party to I'm a bad person because I'm not bending over backwards to give her the best birthday party ever.  Yeah, maybe I should just duck out of this whole birthday thing and let DH figure it out since it's his kid Confused.  I don't have a clue what the boys are getting but DD got her room painted for her birthday.  And we are indeed sending her to camp because she begged to go.  She actually cried last year when her mom wouldn't sign her up for another week (after the week we signed her up for).  And I am more than happy to watch her.  We do a lot of fun stuff over the summer and otherwise BM lets her hang out with greatgrandma every day.  She's a good kid and I (usually) like having her around.  You can't make me out to be a bad stepmom here because I actually give a crap about the kid.  For crying out loud, DH and BM let me mediate the custody agreement. 

    Thank you to those of you who gave me some ideas on how to make sure SDs birthday is special too.  I'm going to have to wait until we decide what exactly we are doing for the preschoolers before I decide what exactly we are doing for SD.  It would be easier to just grab some 1D cupcakes and throw some lip gloss in a loot bag but I think SD would more enjoy a day all to herself when DH will actually be there.

    Lilypie Kids Birthday tickersLilypie Fourth Birthday tickers
  • I think you are missing the point. This isn't a preschoolers birthday party. That would be a gathering with the preschoolers friends. This is a family get together to celebrate The birthdays of multiple child relatives whose birthdays happen to fall within the same month. Do you not see the difference here? If it were the first scenario, you would be getting completely different responses from what you have gotten. The reason people are so pissy with you is because this shouldn't even be a question. She is a child member of the family, and there is a FAMILY get together to celebrate the children's birthdays, to even think she shouldn't be acknowledged and celebrated in an equal way to the other kids present is appalling. Age has absolutely nothing to do with this, and it's quite a lame excuse.
  • la79al

    Ok, at our house, SD will play with her younger sisters.  When we get together with my dads family, the little girls are busy playing with their same age peers.  None of the adults have any contact with 11 year old girls so beyond 'hey how is school going', there's not a lot of conversations.  So maybe not awkward, but not terribly exciting for SD. 

    ?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

    So let me get this straight.  You are bringing your already uncomfortable and uncared for (they cant be bothered to say more than "how is school going? they suck) to a gathering of family that is not open and inviting toward her and NOT doing anything for her birthday...but will do something for her step/half sister?

    And you don't see how this could make her feel even more unaccepted and unwanted? 

    la79al

    DH will not be at the get together because he is going to be at work and can't take off.  It really is supposed to be a laid back picnic sort of thing. 

    *************************************************************************************************

    So if this is a laid back picnic and the one child's father isn't going to be there, then why are you celebrating something for your DD1?  

    Wouldn't it be more appropriate to have your child's birthday party with her father? 

    Or are you having ANOTHER celebration for your biological child WITH her father?  Which is even worse, given you are now celebrating twice for your DD and a crappy once for your step child.

    la79al

    So she's not supposed to use her birthday money for her spending money at camp? That's just bizarre to me.

    *************************************************************************************************

    Yes and no.  I get the idea that your gift to her is fun money for her summer camp.  I would do that too.  

    The "No" part is that this is the ONLY thing you are giving her.  She is 11.

    1) She has the attention span of a hummingbird (a bit above a gnat).   She won't remember that in a week, when she is asked what she got.  She won't remember that when she wants to use that money for something else. 

    She is 11, it is up to YOU to help mitigate that.

    2) How do you think this 11 year old is going to feel when her half-sister is not only getting a part (or two) with people who can't be bothered to make her feel welcomed, gets a tangible gift and she gets an iou?

    At the very least, the adults should recognize this and get her SOMETHING to touch/feel/keep her entertained while she is sitting on the sidelines while the younger kids are off playing and the adults are off talking amongst themselves.

    la79al

    But seriously, relax guys.  I think we're just going to have cake and something special for SD when we go on our camping trip.  She's very excited about the trip so this will make it extra cool.  If I end up doing goody bags for the smaller kids for the upcoming get together, I will do one for SD, with more age appropriate stuff. 

    *************************************************************************************************

    Seriously?  How can you NOT say that this is a Bio vs Step thing after this last bit. Hell, you are putting more thought and energy into your NEPHEWS then you are putting towards your HUSBAND's daughter and biological children's sister.  

    How can you NOT see how all of this will be felt by your step daughter?

    And let me ask you this?  Will your Stepdaughter get gifts from your extended family at this party?  Because damn it, if there is a party for her sister and your nephews AND she doesn't get even the most basically thoughtful gifts, then it will be doubly hurtful for her.

    Just a thought that if you even THINK that she will not be recognized by your family fairly, then you really do need to ensure that she has a party to overcome this or you will make it just THAT much harder on her.

    image
  • image la79al:

    image Littlejen22:
    But Ambvan don't you see? Her SD is not the same age and no one at OPs Dad's house talk to her when she is around anyway so why should they sing Happy Birthday to her? Besides her Dad will not even be here so why should OP care if the girls feelings are hurt if her DH is not there to witness it. And why would they give a seconds thought to her for her birthday anyway since she is not OPs kid anyway. OP, what are the other kids getting for their birthday? Are you sending her to camp because she begged to go and you do not need her to go because you would be home anyway and more than happy to watch her?

    Get a grip.  Somehow this morphed from me asking to what extent I should attempt to include my 12 year old step daughter at a preschool birthday party to I'm a bad person because I'm not bending over backwards to give her the best birthday party ever.  Yeah, maybe I should just duck out of this whole birthday thing and let DH figure it out since it's his kid Confused.  I don't have a clue what the boys are getting but DD got her room painted for her birthday.  And we are indeed sending her to camp because she begged to go.  She actually cried last year when her mom wouldn't sign her up for another week (after the week we signed her up for).  And I am more than happy to watch her.  We do a lot of fun stuff over the summer and otherwise BM lets her hang out with greatgrandma every day.  She's a good kid and I (usually) like having her around.  You can't make me out to be a bad stepmom here because I actually give a crap about the kid.  For crying out loud, DH and BM let me mediate the custody agreement. 

    Thank you to those of you who gave me some ideas on how to make sure SDs birthday is special too.  I'm going to have to wait until we decide what exactly we are doing for the preschoolers before I decide what exactly we are doing for SD.  It would be easier to just grab some 1D cupcakes and throw some lip gloss in a loot bag but I think SD would more enjoy a day all to herself when DH will actually be there.

    The above bolded is really disappointing to read.  With that being said, I agree you should not be involved in planning her birthday celebration.  It is obvious you just feel obligated to do something for her, instead of wanting to like a normal parent should, bio or step.  I understand the whole thing about trying to include an older child during a younger child's party, but geez you and your husband need to acknowledge her.  Otherwise, my suggestion is that your DH doesn't get her for those weekends until all the birthday festivities are over.  You obviously can't seemed to be bothered to make her feel special and if I was her mother I wouldn't want to put my child in a situation where her feeling could get hurt. 

  • bosoxybosoxy
    250 Answers Fourth Anniversary 100 Comments
    member

    If I were your SD, I would be incredibly hurt if I weren't included in the party.  It is bad enough to watch everyone else get attention from family, but to know that your Bday isn't celebrated with them too would also hurt.  

    Is it possible for her to have a friend sleep over and come to the party with her so she isn't alone?

    Even if you ask her if she wants a part of the party, she might turn it down based on previous experience with your family.  That's why I would suggest just asking if she can get a friend (or two) to come along. 


  • As a SM, with SSs who are at an awkward age gap from their cousins, this is how we handle things: everyone who is around celebrates their birthday in that given month. My dad's birthday is celebrated with my sister's fiance, SS1, and my niece. SS2 celebrates with my SIL and his cousin and probably LO. Everyone is acknowledged.

    Your SD is 11. If this is just family, then she learns ro deal with adults or little kids. If the little ones are having a preschool party, let her bring a friend or two and set up manipedi stations. Everyone gets to blow out candles.

    Imagine if it were your DD, how would she feel? My SSs frequently celebrate with my family without DH. Its not step vs bio when all are included... even the sullen sulky tweens. I have teenagers and moody, inappropriate, and cranky are typical.
    together since 2006
    full time stepmom to SS1 and SS2 since 2010
    married since 2011

    TTC since 7/2011 (no planned bc since 2008)
    HSG 11/2011: one blocked tube
    S/A 2/2012 and retest S/A 3/2012: normal
    Bloodwork: normal
    2nd HSG 5/2012: clear
    Femara cycle 5mg #1 7/14/12 + IUI #1 7/23/12 = bfn
    New RE appt 8/14/12
    IVF #1 meds 8/30/12. ER 9/14/2012: 7 retrieved, 6 fertilized. ET 9/19/12: 1 perfect embryo 5dt.
    Beta #1 BFP! 97
    Beta #2 234
    Beta #3 4937
    ultrasound #1 heart beat 127
    10/20/12 graduated!!!
    EDD 6/7/12
    Team PINK!!

    Lilypie Pregnancy tickers

    BabyFruit Ticker
Sign In or Register to comment.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards