I have seven nieces and nephews. I have lived away from them now for 7 years. The youngest is 3, then there are three 8 year olds, an 11 year old, a 12 year old and a 15 year old. I love them all dearly and would really love to see them regularly. I have up until recently seen them several times a year. Now, though, I am no longer able to travel.
Two of my siblings happen to be essentially filthy rich. The kids have everything they might dream of and more. Even the family that is not filthy rich, the kids have more than I ever could have conceived of having when I was a child.
Because of this I put very special effort into selecting gifts for their birthdays and Christmas as, like I said they all basically have everything they could possibly want and a whole lot more. And since I can’t see them I hope to at least make some sort of impression by the “cool” unusual gifts I give them.
Occasionally and the other night was one of these nights I let my pet peeve get the best of me and I get really really annoyed. None of these children have ever in the entire time I have been sending them very carefully considered gifts ever once thanked me for anything I have given them. Nor do their parents thank me or even acknowledge the gift unless I ask if it was received.
I know this is my siblings fault and not the kids, but it bugs me to no end. I have considered sending an email to my siblings saying that unless they teach their children manners I will no longer give them gifts.
But that seems counter-productive in terms of my relationship with the children. It is not their fault that their parents have failed them in teaching them good manners and appreciation for what they have.
But damn, it still can really get my goat sometimes. It’s a dilemma I most likely will not be able to resolve.