Step kids vs non step kids and gifts question

I have some regular nieces and nephews and some step nieces and nephews. I have nothing against the step ones except they have only recently been added to the family and I feel no connection with them. Is it wrong to give the regular ones a gift but not the step ones (as long as I do it in a quiet way and dont be a jerk about it)? Besides the step ones have their own separate family whom they also get gifts from.

Any insights or ideas?

If one of the real neices or nephews intriduces a new spouse to the mix, to whom you as yet feel not much connection to, would you fully include them? Or leave them out? Why?

I can only assume the new step siblings are being fully embraced by the immediate blended family, as they become one. Maybe you should take a hint from them.

Hell, man. I get it. But if they’re really kids you should make the effort. Adults being accepting of kids helps a LOT with integration. You’ll be doing a good deed and forging the beginnings of a bond for the future.

I have both step- and natural- nieces and nephews. As the steps were added to the family, I evened out any gift-giving to be the same between them all. Now, 10+ years on, I’m glad I did. I just think of 'em all as “nieces and nephews” and don’t make a distinction. They’re family, treat them as such.

Yeah, I see lots of resentment coming from finding out you gave the stepneices and nephews nothing. Give them all comparably priced gifts. If money is an issue, get cheaper gifts for all.

You know that the kids are going to talk to each other, right? The step nieces and nephews are going to find out very quickly that you snubbed them. As said, it’s not a good idea for you not to give them stuff.

In your position I would treat them all equally, except if you are active in raising them which then you are in the position of ‘semi’-parent, which I express below in the next paragraph. Step children went through a breakup and loss of a custodial parent, if they end up getting extra gifts from the non-custodial parent, it’s small compensation for being separated. And ultimately a basic need is acceptance & not feeling like a second class citizen. Ultimately it is you accepting your sibling, and the family they have created, that you are expressing in these gifts.

And it’s up to the parents/step parents of how they want to equate any inequality (say from extra gifts from the non-custodial parent to the step children), and up to them if they want or need you to contribute to that effort.

Speaking as someone who spent Christmas as the “step” kid. Definitely get them something.

I remember spending that Christmas eve with what I thought was my family. All the kids got to open their presents first. While I sat there and watched them. Oh I got ONE gift out of the 20 something people were there.

And my gift was a crappy fucking Christmas sweater.

I know this all sounds petty, but keep in mind I was 10.

It sucked and I felt like bawling my eyes out at the time.

So please get them something. And no clothes.

Not giving gifts to the step children is being a jerk about it no matter how quietly you do so.

Ok, I will follow this advice.

Yeah, kanicbird nailed it ^^ the gifts are symbolic of your acceptance of people as family.

no gifts for children = not family

Plus it puts the children in an awkward spot. Are they not supposed to open their gifts? Or play with them (assume these are younger kids)? Lie about where they came from? If you’re giving gifts to selected children, they’re all going to find out somehow.

The only way this would be vaguely acceptable is if the “steps” are like in their 20s and the “bios” are in elementary or middle school.

Stiffing them on presents is a guaranteed way to continue to feel no connection with them. They are part of your family now.

I do not have stepchildren but I have been one.

Good going. Enjoy your holidays.

And it happens fast. My step kid came with a full compliment of grands, uncles/aunts, and family friends. My kids came with…well, me. The new family knew my step kid (age 7) well. He was the only child and they all spoiled him before we ever landed on their scene. He made bank that first Christmas. But nobody really knew me or my kids (ages 8-11), and they did less well. 10 years of total acceptance have passed, everything is reasonably groovy, but my kids are still not comfortable with my in-laws and avoid get togethers if they can bow out with any sort of grace.

This nails it.

Get them all exactly the same thing (gift card?), but treat the new kids as if you had been there their entire life.

^^^I agree with Sunny. That should not have happened. Sometimes adults really act like creeps. Man, oh, man.

It is never “all right” to treat a child as a second-class family member in any way shape or form. Welcome them with open arms.

Yeah, my peeves are with the adults not the kids. Best to make good family connections.