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'AITA for not returning a $100 bill gift given to my daughter?' 'She's spoiled enough as is.'

'AITA for not returning a $100 bill gift given to my daughter?' 'She's spoiled enough as is.'


"AITA for not returning a $100 bill gift given to my daughter?"

Seven-year-old’s birthday party; invite said “no gifts” but a few people brought wrapped presents. When the last parents (Joe & Sue) arrived my daughter asked if they brought a gift; Sue saw the other gifts and looked clearly embarrassed for not having brought one, and said she thought the invite said “no gifts.”

We were standing in front of the other parents who had just given their gifts so I didn’t make a big deal about it, and I said something like “No, no, you’re right we didn’t ask for anything; she’s spoiled enough as is haha….”

Unbeknownst to me, Sue quickly made a card and added it to gift pile. After cake Joe and Sue’s son ran up in front of everyone and asked my daughter to open the card (we had not planned on opening gifts at the party); my daughter pulled out a $100 bill and everyone gasped, basically, and of course my daughter was elated (followed by my daughter opening the other very small, inexpensive presents).

Joe seemed upset and withdrawn the rest of the party, and Sue acted like this was a completely normal gift. My partner had none of this context, and so later when I told my partner how this all transpired they were upset we may have done the wrong thing by not returning the gift, because Joe and Sue clearly felt guilted into it. AITA?

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

gordonf23 said:

YTA. This is mostly a learning opportunity for your daughter. She created the awkward moment by asking if they brought a gift. But she's only 7, so it was a natural question.

Take the opportunity to teach your daughter why that question is rude, and explain why she needs to get permission in the future before opening gifts in front of everyone. Tell her she didn't do anything wrong, but that gift-giving and gift-receiving can be complicated in the adult world.

You put "no gifts" on the invitation. But of course some people brought gifts anyway, and it would be rude to simply tell them, "Nope, we're not accepting gifts." You should have put all the gifts in a different room immediately as they were received so that they weren't creating awkward moments as other parents arrived without gifts.

And you absolutely should not have allowed your daughter to open gifts in front of everyone. When Joe and Sue's son asked her to open the card, you should have cut that off immediately and said, "Not right now. We'll open gifts later after everyone leaves."

You should return the $100. There are 2 ways to do that, depending on your parenting style and goals. 1) Without letting your daughter know and letting her keep the original $100 bill, give a different $100 back to Sue and Joe...

...thank them for such a generous gift, but that you asked for no gifts and apologize for the awkward moment when they arrived when your daughter asked if they brought a gift and creating a sense of obligation.

Tell them you're letting your daughter keep the $100 bill since she was so excited about it. 2) Explain to your daughter that it was an extremely nice gift, but that it was an inappropriately large amount, and that nobody was supposed to bring gifts anyway, so it needs to go back to Joe and Sue.

Open-Incident-3601 said:

YTA. And I have to be honest, you’re the type of parents that I avoid. You said no gifts, you accepted gifts, your child was entitled enough to ask people where the gift was, you saw that one of the couple was visibly dismayed by the $100.

In your shoes, I would have seen a $100 bill that Sue produced on the spot and assumed that money was meant for something else in their budget and was a guilt offering because they followed your rules and were then embarrassed by your child in front of everyone at that party. I absolutely would have given them back the money and apologized for my child’s lack of manners.

Solid_Guest_9661 said:

YTA for stating no gifts and still accepting them. You say you weren't planning on opening gifts at the party. This implies you planned on opening gifts afterwards, meaning you expected gifts anyway. Why bother writing no gifts on the invitation? Why is your daughter asking about gifts if it was a no gift party?

snoopybooliz87 said:

YTA. Why say “No gifts” only to accept gifts?

PoppyStaff said:

YTA for not immediately returning the money, once the son forced the issue, which you should have put a stop to before it started. The gifts that people brought should have been put away immediately so they were not obvious. How to humiliate your guests in one easy lesson.

Ticklish_Pomegranate said:

YTA. I really think that most parents who put "no gifts" on an invite don't truly mean it, they're only doing it if parents of other kids in the friend group are doing it. You should have put the gifts in another room.

Also, suggestions for going forward - if you truly mean no gifts, I would say "no gifts please, but if you want to honor [kid's] birthday, a small donation to [charity of kid's choice] would be appreciated."

Or what I have done (if other parents are really pushing to bring a gift), I ask for a small gift card ($10) to a craft store or book store that my kid likes.

Sources: Reddit
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