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Old 03-27-2012, 01:09 PM   #1
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A gift we don't approve of?

At Christmas, my BIL and SIL bought my 5 year old a little plastic hand gun with holster from the dollar store. My husband and I don't buy my son guns that look realistic (we don't mind light sabers, nerf, etc.) but plastic junk guns are a no-no in our house. Well, we didn't make a big deal of it at Christmas since he opened this gun gift in front of his aunt and uncle. We let that one go, and you can only imagine how much my son loved this gift. (something about boys and their guns).

Well, last week my SIL texted me to tell me she was sending our son an Easter gift and to tell him it was from the Easter bunny. When I got the package yesterday, I had a bad feeling because the box was about 3ft. long. I opened it on my own and inside were 3 real-life plastic guns, except one is a large machine gun that lights up, makes noises, and vibrates. I was really annoyed. An Easter gift?

In any case, I showed my husband, and although I am normally the uptight one, my husband felt it was totally inappropriate. We decided we are not giving it to our son for Easter. It just sends the wrong message in so many ways.

We have to tell my BIL and SIL to stop buying our son guns, that we don't approve of them as toys. I told my husband he needed to call his brother and have the talk, as I know my SIL would get an attitude with me if I tried to tell her. She is the one that buys the presents to begin with.

I am wondering how you guys would approach this.

On a side note, my son attends a preschool where he often will draw army men with guns, or robots with guns. I know this is very much a boy thing and I don't make a big deal out of it, however, his school does not allow any gun play. They don't allow the kids to make guns out of legos or anything. Plus, I know it will be the same when he starts public school in the fall. Just a sensitive topic all the way around in our world.

I am not looking for opinions on why you feel we make too much of a big deal regarding guns in our society. The point is, I don't want anymore guns as gifts for our child.

Thanks for reading.
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Old 03-27-2012, 01:19 PM   #2
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Exclamation Re: A gift we don't approve of?

I think it is just a matter of "biting the bullet" (sorry, LOL) and telling them straight that guns are not appropriate gifts for your son. No matter how you approach them, they/she will probably take a bit of offense. Not much you can do about that. At the end of the day, it is your kid, your rules. Cheers, Sera

 
Old 03-27-2012, 01:45 PM   #3
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Re: A gift we don't approve of?

I do think your husband should probably talk to his brother about this. Whether or not his brother agrees with you, it's your call how you guys choose to raise your kids and if you don't want your kid playing with toy guns then you have every right to not give him that kind of stuff. If your brother in law has any problems, he needs to just get over it cause it's not his kid, not his choice.

For me, I always have trouble buying toys for my friends' kids. I don't have kids so I have no idea what to buy them. It seems to me like a toy gun is like a cop-out gift when someone can't think of anything else to buy a boy. Perhaps you can give them a list of stuff that he has asked for or has expressed interest in, in the past or something, would that work?

Boy I'm sure glad I don't have these kid problems! Lol

 
Old 03-27-2012, 02:10 PM   #4
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Re: A gift we don't approve of?

I agree - have your hubby tell his brother that you two decided when you had children that you did not want to have them play with realistic guns or other weapons. Give him some other choices that will work for your son. If they continue to send guns, then it's your prerogative to give them away or return them to the store. Sure, the BIL and SIL may get upset now, but let them stew in their own juices; raise your children the way you feel best.

I never wanted my son to play with guns either.

 
Old 03-27-2012, 02:29 PM   #5
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Re: A gift we don't approve of?

Thanks for your support and help everyone. I did think about donating them, but I have a feeling charities wouldn't give guns as gifts, either.

I think my BIL will take it better than my SIL. And, they certainly know how much my son adores Legos (you can never go wrong with Legos) and Star Wars. But for Easter, even a stuffed rabbit or candy would have been appropriate.

My BIL and SIL have a special needs little boy, who will probably never have the opportunity to play with toys like other kids so they won't understand how I feel. However, I am totally going to buy him an Easter book of some sort and send it to him. Always better to take the higher road.

Thanks again!
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Old 03-27-2012, 02:37 PM   #6
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Re: A gift we don't approve of?

My best friend's son is special needs and he loves stuffed animals. The fluffier and softer the better. I think he has some kind of sensory issue as well. So I got him this really fluffy soft bunny for Easter one year and he absolutely loved it! I think that might be a good choice for your nephew.

 
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Old 03-27-2012, 09:13 PM   #7
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Re: A gift we don't approve of?

My husband and I too did not want our son playing with toy weapons or action figures. My BIL (my husband's brother) actually said to us "that's ridiculous, I'm buying him toy guns and action figures!"...and he did. We sold them at a yard sale. We figured if he was rude to us about our preferences of how to raise our child, we could (rudely) sell the gifts.

I don't know how helpful this is, but I wanted you to know there is someone else out there who feels the same way! We didn't want our son to pretend to fight and kill people, it just felt wrong to us.

BTW, the BIL got over it and when he had kids of his own he understood!

 
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