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why do people....

Why do people spend money on christmas presents when they struggle week to week to pay their bills? This seems so ridiculous to me I can't make sense of's just stuff in a box. I know people are going to say, "yeah, but the kids"...I think all you're teaching your kids by doing this is that "right now gratification" is more important than security to take care of your family. I am going out on a limb here and saying this. I am not rich my any means, but I do have "emergency" money saved. But, I think this is why "poor" people stay that way. They continue to spend what they don't have. I know this is a very hard year for everyone, so why put yourself in more of a financial pit just for the sake of presents?

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 12:09 PM on Dec. 14, 2008 in Holidays

Answers (10)
  • When my mom and dad got divorced, she was openly honest with us that she couldn't afford Christmas that year. Of course, being 10 and 8, we were pissed. But I know where you're coming from. I would never spend money on materialistic, unimportant things if we were in the slums. You're right, that is how poor people stay that way.

    Answer by oliviasmomma09 at 12:17 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • I agree. I have 3 kids and we're only getting them 2 gifts each and some stocking stuffers from the Dollar Tree. They know why WE celebrate Christmas and know that it's not all about getting material things.

    Answer by ReneeK3 at 12:26 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • I don't think it's about that. I think that people honestly want to give their children a nice Christmas. Every child deserves something for Christmas. Even if it a toy from the Dollar Tree. I don't think that people are honestly going broke just for Christmas, but think of it this way. Those families may work hard all year long, they may be poor, but for one day they get to have a good day. They get to have a treat for themselves. Not trying to make anyone mad. Just my opinion.

    Answer by crystac at 12:31 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • When my mom was a kid, my grandparents wanted to buy a house for the three girls to grow up in. The talked to my mom and aunts and told them, if they got the house, there would be no Christmas gifts for a few years. The girls chose the house and my mom has never regretted it.

    Christmas should be about sharing time and love. If you don't have the money, do something else for gifts. I always liked "coupons" for mommy days or an undisputed hour of peace when we had no money for gifts.

    Answer by mom2alan at 12:49 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • I think every child deserves something under the tree at Christmas, there have been a few tough years where my kids only got dollar store presents but at least they got something.

    Answer by sammiesmom2000 at 1:05 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • Ok, I am the OP....I guess I should have made this point....I totally agree that just about anyone can get their child SOMETHING for christmas. I just know of a family who is so far in debt they can't see straight...had to take out a loan just to have grocery money, but then goes and buys about $1000 worth of christmas presents. The same day she said they had to "re-do" the loan, they went and bought a pre-lit christmas tree, ate at a mid-class restaraunt and then shopped for cheap groceries at the discount kind of makes me mad. the next time she calls me worried about bills I am going to just point out where she has blatently wasted their money.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:23 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • my daughter is usually good, but my son varies from time to time. we usually eat out once or twice a week.

    Answer by weaveress at 5:33 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • I know what you mean. Some people really have no sense with money. We budgeted very carefully to make sure all our bills were paid and there was some money left for Christmas. The Christmas money mostly was split between the kids with the same amount spent per child, and we each got each other a gift and I made a dozen brownie-mix-in-a-jar gifts for family and close friends. (Those are the BEST! They ended up only costing between $2 and $3 each, not bad!)

    Answer by jlknudsen5478 at 6:14 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • I agree!

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:53 PM on Dec. 14, 2008

  • My mother, after a few years of real lean Christmases, went crazy one year, writing bad checks and getting us all a TON of presents. Five months later, our house burned down and we lost EVERYTHING except what we were able to get out with and I don't believe it was any of the presents we got that year.

    We've had some real lean years and last year, for my daughter's birthday, it was tough. I asked for things through Freecycle. The only reason we have done as well as we have is because when times have gotten tough, we've really worked to crack down on our spending especially eating out.

    Answer by simplyjaneen at 2:54 PM on Dec. 24, 2008

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