Parenting Conundrum

August 16, 2009 · 4 comments

So… I’ve a bit of a parenting conundrum going on as of today and I am looking for your input!

Matt & Preston are 2 years and 2 weeks apart.  Being the oldest, Matt has obviously gotten all of his stuff – toys, clothes, whatever, brand new.  Preston, being the second and a boy, has obviously gotten a LOT of hand-me-downs throughout his life.  I never minded passing down the clothes or toys…I mean, why not?!  The thing is though, the boys are getting to an age where they want (and seem to appreciate) things of their OWN.

Today we brought home Matt’s birthday present (5 days early) – we bought him a new bike.  It is totally awesome (pics to follow in a more fun post) and it was time, as he has totally outgrown his old one (had to go from 16″ to 20″!!).  Matt loves his bike and rides it all the time.  Until recently (read:today), Preston has not had a bike of his own; he’s been more of a use-his-feet or big wheel kind of kid.  Apparently, what we assumed was a lack of interest was more a lack of opportunity/availability.  As sson as Matt got on his new bike and we put a helmet on Preston, he was riding Matt’s old bike like a champ!!

Here’s the conundrum (were you starting to wonder when I was going to get to the point already?!)….tonight, before bed, Preston started crying about how he wanted the orange bike to be his birthday present.  Honestly, I was pretty surprised! He never said word one while Matt was checking it out or riding it or anything! And never a word while riding Matt’s old bike or even after we came in!!

I have to admit, even though there is nothing major wrong with Matt’s old bike (other than it being as beat up as a 2 year old kid bike gets), I feel pretty bad about not bringing home a new bike for Preston, too.  It’s not like it’s a random purchase, it was a birthday present – and Preston knows his birthday is in a couple of weeks (they DO share a birthday party still!).  But I am torn – because while on the one hand I think he deserves a new bike all his own, on the other hand I think there’s nothing wrong with the used bike and he should suck it up.

What do YOU think?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Heather August 16, 2009 at 11:37 pm

My oldest 2 kids are 2 years and 1 week apart. They are not the same sex, but often want the same things. My daughter (the oldest) needed a bigger bike this year. My son is short. He does not need a bigger bike yet. He has been upset since M got her bigger bike, asking when he gets a bigger bike. I told him he’ll get one when he needs one.

It’s hard for kids to realize fair doesn’t mean equal. It’s up to us to teach them that we will give them what they “need” (which, honestly, they don’t need any of this stuff we give them, right?) when they really “need” it. It’s not going to be at the same time as their sibling(s). Then we try to point out the perks of being younger.
.-= Heather´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..Simply Joy Sunday #30 =-.


Amy Scott August 17, 2009 at 11:18 am

That always happens to my youngest daughter too. For the past year she refuses to wear most of my older daughter’s hand-me-downs because they are “out of style” or “ugly” so I have conceeded to that. The bike thing has happened to us aas well. If it is Matt’s birthday I would say Matt deserves the bike. Maybe you could put off Preston’s bike until Christmas. It seems when we bought things like that for both just because the other one wanted one too it wasn’t as special to the one who was supposed to be getting it in the first place. Whatever you do I am sure it will all work out. Hard when those crocodile tears come a’fallin’.


Emily R August 17, 2009 at 6:24 pm

i guess it depends how much he wants it. i think some new things are fine, but i’ll bet when pressed he’d rather get a hand me down bike and an additional present.
.-= Emily R´s last [bit of blogging genius] ..Tipsy =-.


J.J. August 17, 2009 at 6:39 pm

I am the youngest. I don’t ever remember getting a hand-me-down bike. I got my own bike, but my parents had it so we got bikes on certain birthdays (like when we turned 5, we got a new bike).

I really was sensitive about hand-me-downs. Certain things I was fine with…like getting my sister’s car when my she went off to college. But, a bike or roller skates or fun toys (that are a “right of passage” of childhood), never. I always got my own to beat up.

I honestly do not plan on passing down bikes to Delaney if we can afford it…simply because I didn’t like having to always use my sister’s old stuff.


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