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One child needs new clothes, the others don't - How to handle during the holidays?

I have a daughter who's turning 8 next month, and she's decided to go on a growth spurt - right before the holidays. This has necessitated buying her some new clothes, since her current pants/skirts are too short. However, I'm faced with a minor dilemma. The purchase of new clothes for the kids is usually a big event in our house (don't know why, but the kids love new clothes), and I'm unsure how to handle giving my daughter her new duds.

I have been done with the buying and wrapping of Christmas gifts for weeks, and my 5-year-old twins are not in need of new clothes. If I wrap them and put them under the tree, as my husband has suggested, I'm afraid the disparity of gifts will be obvious (unless I use a giant box, but that's noticeable too). I'd personally rather not give them as Christmas gifts, since they're necessities - should I just hang them in her closet, and tell the boys that their sister really needed new clothes (and hope they're not jealous)? Any and all suggestions welcome.

*Edit* Something I realized I should have put in the question: My twins are a little delayed, particularly when it comes to behavior (although one is better than the other). They know that sometimes they get stuff when their sister doesn't, and vice versa - but this is the first Christmas where they've really been aware of what's going on, gift-wise. Could be, they'll have no problem with it, I just wanted to be cautious. Or as my husband says, I wanted to over-analyze the who situation. Thank you all who've posted, I think I'm just going to put the stuff away, and go from there.


Asked by GoddessAnna at 12:20 PM on Dec. 23, 2010 in General Parenting

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Answers (11)
  • just hang them. there will come a time when they will need new clothes and she wont. so just explain. and they are 5, its not going to be that big of a deal.

    Answer by Phippsandrea at 12:23 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • give them either a week before or a week after christmas.... if she needs them then she needs them. Don't give them on christmas as that will be like a present.

    Answer by Piskie at 12:26 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • Just hang them in the closet and explain that sometime they will have a growth spurt and get new clothes while their sister doesn't need them. Life's not always fair this way and you can't make it fair... they will deal with it!

    Answer by Freela at 12:28 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • Works for me! Thank you.

    Comment by GoddessAnna (original poster) at 12:23 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • I think this is one of those times where you say that you won't be questioned by children about your actions. Life isn't always fair. If your daughter needs clothes there's no getting around it. Most likely there will come atime when the boys will need clothes and she won't.
    I'd just put them away in her room. Don't make a big show of it.

    Answer by butterflyblue19 at 12:25 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • Yeah, they can understand that. I guess I'm only worried since Christmas is 2 days away, I don't want them to think I like their sister more. They're a little delayed, we've been working on the concepts of needs and wants, I'm not sure how they'll think. Any other time of the year, I wouldn't worry, you know?

    Comment by GoddessAnna (original poster) at 12:27 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • I agree, just hang them in her closet. I wouldn't think that they boys would even notice.

    I think Linda took this a bit too far, and is forgetting the the children are FIVE. Five year olds aren't experts at reasoning, nor are they always able to express their feelings appropriately.

    If you run into a problem, which IMO is doubtful, explain to them that their sister has grown since you last went shopping, and she needs new clothing.

    Answer by twin_mommy at 12:38 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • normally when we have to get one something that is a need, we just put it away and explain to the others that they didnt need anything yet, but their turn will come. i wouldnt make a big deal out of it, and maybe that will help.

    Answer by tiffanyv123 at 1:07 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • Take her shopping after Christmas and then they won't associate her clothes with Christmas gifts. On Sunday or Monday you'll probably find a lot of great deals on clothes anyway with returns and sales to make up for the things that didn't sell as anticipated for the holiday.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:08 PM on Dec. 23, 2010

  • Thank you all! The clothes I already have are put away, and we'll do some shopping next week, just the two of us.

    Comment by GoddessAnna (original poster) at 2:30 PM on Dec. 23, 2010