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How Important is Your Birthday?

How important is Your Birthday?

  • I''m the center of the universe on my birthday

    Votes: 1 100.0%
  • Birthday, what birthday? I try to ignore getting older...

    Votes: 1 100.0%
  • Couldn''t care less about my birthday

    Votes: 1 100.0%
  • Other (please share)

    Votes: 1 100.0%
  • Just show me the answers

    Votes: 1 100.0%

  • Total voters
    1

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
So, my DH and I have been having discussions about this for years, but it especially comes up twice a year around each of our birthdays (mine is this Friday - I''ll be 27 on the 27th
).

We grew up with - and still have - totally different perspectives on what a birthday should be and how important it is. For me, in my family, a birthday was the one day a year when it got to be all about you. You got to make the decisions, everybody had to be nice to you, you were basically king or queen for a day, and it was a big deal. It was especially a big deal for me, because I was often the child that was sort of placed in the background and/or only appreciated/praised for my accomplishments, so it was a rare chance for me to feel like the center of attention just because.

My DH on the other hand, grew up that birthdays just weren''t that huge a deal. Not that they didn''t celebrate them and give gifts, but it wasn''t the same idea as in my family - you might have a party and/or a meal for your birthday, but sometimes not even that.

Fast forward to our adult life together, and we''ve run into some conflicts because of our differing backgrounds and viewpoints. I still want a big deal to be made of my birthday, and he is just the opposite - when I try to make a big deal of his, it makes him uncomfortable.

This isn''t an earth-shattering issue, I realize, but I was curious to get people''s input on it, and see - what was your experience growing up? How does that inform what you do/wish you could do now? Does your SO have a different idea about birthdays? How do you reconcile them?
 

Lauren8211

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 25, 2008
Messages
11,073
FF and I like to joke that it''s our birthday "week."

We make a huge big fanatical deal out of each others birthday. It''s just an excuse to pamper one another and do something really special. We always say "You have to be nice! It''s my birthday!"


I''d be bummed if he didn''t go out of his way for me, and vice versa. We look forward to spoiling one another.

FF turns 30 in 2 months. I better start planning!
 

laine

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Feb 21, 2006
Messages
696
I voted couldn''t care less, which is mostly true. I would be disappointed if I didn''t get a phone call from my parents and a "happy birthday" from BF. And birthday wishes on facebook and such make me smile, but that''s all I need. BF and I usually skip gifts (we skipped Xmas too--we don''t have a lot of money right now and don''t really need/want anything), and we sometimes try to do a nice dinner, but it often doesn''t happen.

I feel like birthdays are a big deal when you''re a kid, and then the milestones like 16, 18, 21, but other than that, I don''t care too much. I''m turning 30 this year, and even that doesn''t really seem like a big deal to me--I don''t expect any particularly special treatment.

I just don''t get too excited about most holidays. I don''t think of anniversaries as a particularly big deal either. BF and I don''t celebrate a dating anniversary, and wedding anniversaries, while special, don''t warrant a lot of attention in my mind--I wouldn''t expect anyone other than future hubby to remember and I wouldn''t expect more than maybe dinner.

I feel bad sometimes, because I treat other people''s milestones the way I expect mine to be treated, and I know that sometimes results in people feeling disappointed when they expect more.
 

Skippy123

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 24, 2006
Messages
24,299
AG, you and your dh are EXACTLY like my dh and me. We use to get into some arguments in the beginning of our marriage since he thought birthdays were no big deal. Now he makes it my day; he get's it and he realizes it is important to me now. Maybe just sit down and tell him that it is really important to you and other days don't matter as much, well besides your anniversary.
 

decodelighted

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2005
Messages
11,534
Think ahead about this ... how silly would it be for a 37 year old woman to need a big todo about her birthday ... or a 44 year old dude ... or a 57 year old grandma. It just gets so ... desperate.

Honestly, I think it does kids a huge disservice to have big birthday blowouts because it sets up ridiculous expectations that are unlikely to be met throughout life ... voluntarily at least. I suppose you can manipulate people into caring if you try hard enough but how empty is that? Pretty empty.
 

somegirl932

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
311
In my family, your birthday has always been your special day, but you''re not the center of the universe. You got to pick out what meals you wanted to have, or maybe a movie to see. Not a huge spectacular thing, but a couple little things to acknowledge that you are special!
 

bebe

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 20, 2007
Messages
2,845
growing up birthdays were no big deal. we got a gift and a nice dinner. now, that I''m getting older, I do appreciate every year and want to mark the day as special.
for my 50th, I toured Kauai by helicopter, bought a South Sea P---l necklace, and had an awesome dinner. this year, for my 54th, I stayed in bed nursing a stomach ache
due to taking vitamins on an empty stomach! ha ha, so much for marking the day as special!
 

Dancing Fire

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Apr 3, 2004
Messages
32,396
the older you get the more depressing it gets. i wouldn't mind being 27 again
 

Kaleigh

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Nov 18, 2004
Messages
29,570
Hubby always makes a big deal out of my birthday. I do the same for him. Growing up, my parents forgot a couple of my birthdays. Forgetting my 10th birthday, was a real low point.
So I have always made a big deal out of my kids birthdays. They always got to choose what they wanted, a party, etc...

DD is turning 21 in May. She''s going to be away for her birthday celebrating with friends at our summer house. But will be throwing her a big party before, for all her college buddies. I can''t wait.

Amber I hope you can tell him how much this means to you. My husband didn''t care much about his, but over the years, he''s really enjoyed what I have done for him....
 

puffy

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 20, 2006
Messages
1,567
DH always makes my bday a big deal, and i am not complaining.
it''s the one day that i still have that''s my day.
he usually plans a trip for us. this year we''ll be going to vegas and bringing our DS. he gets me a bday gift and every day for a week before my bday, he gives me something small.
i plan to make our kid(s) birthdays a big deal every year. DH''s family wasn''t really into birthdays but my family has always been and i plan to continue it.
 

Linda W

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 15, 2006
Messages
10,630
Growing up, my family always made a big deal out of my birthday, same with my hubbies family. I always make my hubby a special bday dinner, and he will take me out for mine, or my daughter will cook me a bday dinner. My family still celebrates mine. For myself, I have a "who cares" attitude as I am getting older now.

I get the biggest kick out of my grandboys though. They love celebrating birthdays. They make a big deal out of mine and my hubbies. They buy us balloons, etc. It is the most precious thing. That is what I treasure the most about my birthdays now.
 

Kelli

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
5,455
I don't care a whole lot about it. Big deals were made when I was a kid, but not so much now, although I still get cards with cash in them from my parents, and my fiancee will usually do something nice for me. Or, we'll just take a weekend trip to celebrate our birthdays, which are less than a month apart. But I've never been a big, "it's my birthday, you have to do what I want" kind of person.

I have no problem with people celebrating and wanting to be the center of attention on their birthdays. I will say, however, as someone who works with kids of all ages, that it drives me UP THE FREAKING WALL when parents allow their kids to behave like absolute spoiled brats and be rude to others all because "it's their birthday' or even "it's Christmas!" Sadly, this is something I've started to see WAY too often and I wish it would stop.

BUT................. to a kind hearted gracious person, kid or adult, HAPPY BIRTHDAY and have a blast! Do it up right and get some bling!
 

lyra

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
5,147
My birthday always falls within a couple of days of Mother''s Day, which is good and bad. I answered "other" to the poll. I don''t really care if anyone celebrates my birthday, but darn it, I don''t want to have to cook or do housework that day, that''s a big deal for me.
Otherwise, we''re not real big birthday celebraters, not even for our adult kids.
 

FrekeChild

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 14, 2007
Messages
19,456
I just want to go eat at where I want to on my birthday. That''s all I care about.
 

HollyS

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 18, 2007
Messages
6,099
Date: 3/25/2009 11:21:38 PM
Author: decodelighted
Think ahead about this ... how silly would it be for a 37 year old woman to need a big todo about her birthday ... or a 44 year old dude ... or a 57 year old grandma. It just gets so ... desperate.

Honestly, I think it does kids a huge disservice to have big birthday blowouts because it sets up ridiculous expectations that are unlikely to be met throughout life ... voluntarily at least. I suppose you can manipulate people into caring if you try hard enough but how empty is that? Pretty empty.
LOL!

As usual, you hit the nail squarely on the head! Were you born wise, or is it years of therapy talking?
 

AGBF

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 26, 2003
Messages
21,806
I am not sure how this is supposed to work. I voted for, "Other (please share)". Then I got shot to a graph. So I will share here. OK?

My response is not that I couldn't care less, but that I had better not care, because no one else does! I believe one does better if he tries to live "life on life's terms" rather than trying to make life fit his childhood expectations of what it should have been :). No one here acknowledges that I have a birthday (although my father, my aunt, and my brother still do!). My husband and daughter also do not give me Christmas presents. Nor does my husband give me an anniversary or Valentine's Day card or present. That doesn't mean he doesn't love me. It also doesn't stop me from giving him and my daughter (and him from my daughter) cards and gifts for for the occasions above. (I don't give him an anniversary card or gift from my daughter.)

That's just the way the cookie happened to crumble here :). I should probably add that if I had ever thrown a fit, I could have gotten pretty much whatever I wanted ;-). As long as it wasn't hideously expensive.

AGBF
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,893
I voted that they''re not that important to me, now that I''m 31 I don''t really want anyone knowing EXACTLY how old I am, and I agree with Deco...it does seem sort of desperate for a grown adult to insist that everyone make a huge deal out of their birthday.

There should also be a poll for how important your anniversary is...a friend of mine has this to say: "anniversaries seem so defeatist--''yay, we made it another year!''" I thought that was pretty funny.
 

atroop711

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Aug 31, 2005
Messages
2,844
growing up it was a HUGE deal in my family...big party,ect. For my dh is was really nothing. God forbid they made a big deal for him (poor guy...he was the baby of 9). When we met, I was the first person to ever throw him a party..and he was hooked! His bday is a week before Xmas so he always got the short end of the stick. I make sure he gets a bday gift and an xmas gift.

We make a big deal for our kids too..(not too big that they are spoiled) but it's always a family event. We have a big dinner with extended fam, a fam. party and even a party with their friends. I feel like we are celebrating their bdays all month long. My sis lives far away...so when we see her she has a cake for them. My best friend also does the same when we visit her...so my kids get at least 3 cakes cut for them on or around their bdays.

ONE THING I DO FOR MYSELF on my bday every year is head to the spa. I get a few things done (massage, facial). This is the only day of the year that I really do anything for myself. It's become a yearly ritual. By the time I get out it's late morning and I'm relaxed to spend the entire day with my husband and 3 kids.
 

elrohwen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 20, 2008
Messages
5,526
I honestly don't care about my birthday much. The only gift FI and usually exchange is a nice dinner (and since our food money is combined, we're both paying for it). It's just a nice treat and we don't often go out to expensive dinners in an effort to save money. Plus, we're totally into food, so I can't think of a better gift than something food related.

As for parties, this past year we invited all of our friends out for dinner at a restaurant of our choice which was a lot of fun. And sometimes I round up co-workers to go out to lunch on my birthday with me, but I don't expect others to plan this stuff. I'm fine with sending out the email asking everyone to come.

My first year at my company, everyone forgot about my birthday including my boss. She realized after I had left and called my cell apologizing. She felt really bad, but I didn't even care! Haha. When I was a kid I'm sure I cared a lot more, but I think that kind of thing naturally fades as you get older in many people.

ETA: I wanted to add that I do usually like a card on my birthday from FI. We kind of have a deal that since we don't make a big deal out of birthdays, Valentine's Day, etc, we should at least buy a cute card. If he misses one or two, I don't mind (I'm sure I miss one or two occasions as well) but for the most part we keep up with the cards.
 

vintagelover229

Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
3,517
I choose other, and this is why. I''d like someone to say "Happy Birthday" and its nice to get a card or something...but its also just another day. I''m not one of those ppl who take the day off work, etc just because its my birthday. I''m pretty "whatever" about it...and was even on my 21st b-day that was ~3 wks ago...and they took me to Vegas for it...and I was still like "whatever" about it, lol.
 

fieryred33143

Ideal_Rock
Joined
May 18, 2008
Messages
6,689
I voted other. I like to be acknowledged on my birthday so that I know he remembers. But after getting a Happy Birthday I''m pretty set. I don''t need gifts or a cake or anything (although he always at least gets me a cake even if we eat it ourselves
)
 

Italiahaircolor

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 16, 2007
Messages
5,184
Growing up, we celebrated birthdays in a big way. My mom often times rented party buses as transportation, let us have lavish sleep overs in hotel rooms with mini spa treatments, manicurists would come to our "tea parties", she took us to plays or rented out roller skating rinks. We had serious fun! But as we got older, the parties got smaller...not drastically, we never went into a birthday party depression...but she eased off the huge celebrations to better prepare us for a world where birthdays didn''t actually make you a princess.

Now that I''m older, my DH and I still celebrate...this year he took me to a UFC fight and a weekend away, he also bought me a little puppy (which I''d been dying for.) But, every year is different....last year we went to Dave and Busters with friends and blew over 1k on stupid games, but it was amazingly fun! We still celebrate, but there is no "road map" persay. Although, my DH will be celebrating his 30th birthday in Las Vegas this year and we''re taking everyone on the Dinner In The Sky attraction and I''m sending him on the Richard Petty Experience!
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:03:14 PM
Author: elledizzy5
FF and I like to joke that it''s our birthday ''week.''


We make a huge big fanatical deal out of each others birthday. It''s just an excuse to pamper one another and do something really special. We always say ''You have to be nice! It''s my birthday!''



I''d be bummed if he didn''t go out of his way for me, and vice versa. We look forward to spoiling one another.


FF turns 30 in 2 months. I better start planning!
You guys sound like me! I''m not sure I''d know what to do with a whole week though


I agree about starting to plan - 30 is a big one!!
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:14:58 PM
Author: laine
I voted couldn''t care less, which is mostly true. I would be disappointed if I didn''t get a phone call from my parents and a ''happy birthday'' from BF. And birthday wishes on facebook and such make me smile, but that''s all I need. BF and I usually skip gifts (we skipped Xmas too--we don''t have a lot of money right now and don''t really need/want anything), and we sometimes try to do a nice dinner, but it often doesn''t happen.


I feel like birthdays are a big deal when you''re a kid, and then the milestones like 16, 18, 21, but other than that, I don''t care too much. I''m turning 30 this year, and even that doesn''t really seem like a big deal to me--I don''t expect any particularly special treatment.


I just don''t get too excited about most holidays. I don''t think of anniversaries as a particularly big deal either. BF and I don''t celebrate a dating anniversary, and wedding anniversaries, while special, don''t warrant a lot of attention in my mind--I wouldn''t expect anyone other than future hubby to remember and I wouldn''t expect more than maybe dinner.


I feel bad sometimes, because I treat other people''s milestones the way I expect mine to be treated, and I know that sometimes results in people feeling disappointed when they expect more.
Laine - you totally sound like my DH about birthdays. Funny about the anniversaries though - those he totally thinks are a big deal, and he was really sad when I had to be out of town on our wedding anniversary this past year. Its so interesting how people have such radically different expectations around these things, isn''t it?
 

Bia

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
6,181
Date: 3/26/2009 2:02:52 AM
Author: FrekeChild
I just want to go eat at where I want to on my birthday. That's all I care about.
Same.

FI makes a bigger deal than I do because his family made it a big deal. My family did the dinner and cake thing on every birthday. Naturally when we were children we had the big parties at Chucky Cheese or wherever, but that's about it. Now, as long as I get calls from my loved ones and a nice dinner out of FI, that's all I need.

ETA: Oh, and I do not EVER want a surprise party thrown in my honor...I hate that $**t.
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:15:15 PM
Author: Skippy123
AG, you and your dh are EXACTLY like my dh and me. We use to get into some arguments in the beginning of our marriage since he thought birthdays were no big deal. Now he makes it my day; he get''s it and he realizes it is important to me now. Maybe just sit down and tell him that it is really important to you and other days don''t matter as much, well besides your anniversary.
Skippy - I thin my DH does get how important it is to me, he just is sometimes unsure about how much he''s expected to plan vs. just going along with what I want to do, which is completely reasonable - I need expectations to be clear as well. You are right, and we have been talking about it - I think we might set a 1 month prior to birthday check-in of some kind from now on, and try to plan anything that needs planning then.
 

CrookedRock

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
May 8, 2007
Messages
1,738
This is actually something we joke about a lot. When I was growing up until about 12 birthdays were a pretty big deal. My parents use to take the whole family and my best friend to an amusement park the next state over for the weekend. It was always a blast, then we moved to FL and birthdays became pool parties. Not bad either. But when my parents split birthdays got wierd.
My FI always makes a big deal out of my Birthday and I really appreciate it! Two years ago he started taking me on a cool trip for my Bday. He always says that it''s my "Birthday Life" LOL.
He doesn''t really get into Birthday''s other than mine but I still try my best to make it a great day for him too.
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:21:38 PM
Author: decodelighted
Think ahead about this ... how silly would it be for a 37 year old woman to need a big todo about her birthday ... or a 44 year old dude ... or a 57 year old grandma. It just gets so ... desperate.


Honestly, I think it does kids a huge disservice to have big birthday blowouts because it sets up ridiculous expectations that are unlikely to be met throughout life ... voluntarily at least. I suppose you can manipulate people into caring if you try hard enough but how empty is that? Pretty empty.
Deco - I think part of the reason my perspective is warped is that as big a deal as my birthday was to me, my stepmother (who is VERY warped in a lot of ways
) - her birthday was a HUGE deal. Even by the time she was turning 50, she had a huge party for herself and made people write things down about her and read them out loud
It was almost painful, and, you are right, desperate feeling.

I appreciate the reality check. I also want to be clear I don''t expect anyone except my husband, mother, and a couple of very close friends to remember, and my DH and mom are really the only ones I expect to do anything about it. But you are right, I have to be careful - I don''t want to be composing bad poems to myself by the time I''m 45
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:29:50 PM
Author: somegirl932
In my family, your birthday has always been your special day, but you''re not the center of the universe. You got to pick out what meals you wanted to have, or maybe a movie to see. Not a huge spectacular thing, but a couple little things to acknowledge that you are special!
I think this is more what I was trying to describe - maybe a little bit more than this, but I think its honestly more symbolic than anything - the idea of setting that day aside and really making it special.
 

AmberGretchen

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jan 6, 2005
Messages
7,770
Date: 3/25/2009 11:38:55 PM
Author: bebe
growing up birthdays were no big deal. we got a gift and a nice dinner. now, that I''m getting older, I do appreciate every year and want to mark the day as special.

for my 50th, I toured Kauai by helicopter, bought a South Sea P---l necklace, and had an awesome dinner. this year, for my 54th, I stayed in bed nursing a stomach ache

due to taking vitamins on an empty stomach! ha ha, so much for marking the day as special!
Awww...bebe, your 54th sounds no fun at all, I''m so sorry


But that 50th - WOW. I think I might have to start working on my DH now to start planting ideas for something like that
 
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