Need help with this in this catagories can't afford Christmas

Krista - posted on 11/11/2009 ( 30 moms have responded )

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How do I explain to my children that there might not be a christmas if I can't even convince my mother that I can't afford Christmas this year. Its not that I don't want to but the debts are overwhelming and they keep coming. I left my husbanc and he left me with the debt same as my childrens fathers. One minute I'm figuring it all out and the next I'm not. I don't want to hurt them because I know they are looking forward to Christmas. Anyone have any suggestion that avoid me being the worst parent ever.

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Ann - posted on 11/17/2009

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I was once so poor we couldn't afford milk. It was so hard. Our Christmas tree was a branch from a pine tree with some decorations I had from before. No husband, he left with his girlfriend. That was hard. No Christmas. Don't agonize over it. Just decide what you can afford. If it's $2, then it's 2. If it's $20, then it's $20. Then explain that you have this amount and that's it. Make Christmas about doing things not getting things. Make it about sledding, and hot cocoa and walking in the snowy woods and maybe going caroling with some friends and visiting Mom and friends and bringing some baked cookies or spice cake or something. It doesn't have to be about getting!!! How about this Christmas giving? How about going to a homeless shelter and serving Christmas dinner? Or how about going to one of the groups that gives toys to homeless kids and helpign give away toys? How about visiting a Elderly Care Facility and giving time and love to those who don't have family during Christmas? Or how about visiting the Animal Shelter and offering to take a dog on a walk or to pet a kitty... of course you will have to tell the kids they can't take one home but they can have as many as they want, as long as they stay at the shelter!!!

The opportunities to give are endless. And they are way better than getting some dumb game or piece of clothing.

God Bless and I hope this helps!

Shannon - posted on 11/22/2009

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perhaps you could find out what small gifts they would like and just buy one or two small things...they'd still have something to unwrap under the tree...and maybe you and your kids could volunteer this year at a soup kitchen or something where they can see how fortunate they are....and when you get back home with them sit down and explain that you'd like to do more for them but at this point they need to take a look around and be thankful for what they have.

Amy - posted on 11/21/2009

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have you tried child support enforcement?or a court order for child support? that always helps.then go to the salvation army (they do christmas gifts for low income families not just homless people),local churches(even if your not a member),local radio stations,and other organizations that help feed the hungery,toys for tots(it's not just for tots),etc. there are too many places that help at this time of year for you to just tell them no christmas.you just need to get up and go to these places and apply. some can be done online .

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Laurea - posted on 12/21/2013

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I have a daughter and she doesn't care about presents she would love to have a treasure hunt instead. Find some cool things outside, hide them and make your kids find them, it would mean a lot to them if you just explain that you couldn't get them gifts this year so you set up a treasure hunt instead this year. I'm sure they wouldn't mind and they would think they had the best mom ever.

God Bless

Michelle - posted on 12/19/2013

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It. Hard. To. Get help. Becausr. People who gey help from every places don't need help but me with ,3 childre can get help I lost my job please help me anyway you can.

Julie - posted on 12/16/2013

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Christmas this year may not happen for my son. I'm a single mom, working, and going to nursing school. I literally have $28 in my checking and will not get paid again til after Christmas. I have used up resources in getting help from family and loans to help with school. I can't get a credit card. What do I do?? In desperate need of a miracle.

Julie - posted on 12/16/2013

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Christmas this year may not happen for my son. I'm a single mom, working, and going to nursing school. I literally have $28 in my checking and will not get paid again til after Christmas. I have used up resources in getting help from family and loans to help with school. I can't get a credit card. What do I do?? In desperate need of a miracle.

Enjoliwilson - posted on 12/15/2013

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A mom of two girl 2YEARS OF AGE AND SON 11 MONTHS NEED HELP WITH CHRISMAS

June - posted on 12/13/2013

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My husband been really sick with his diabetes.I moved too san bernardino from lurcerne valley so he can go to the county hodpital arrowhead to get medicine. ..I lost my job also in hopes too find a new one..in san bernardino. .
We are barly making it with my edd checks ..I have seven children..I am very bless I love my kids so much...I can not even afford a christmss tree and feel useless. ..I dont knoe what too do.I pray to god he will get us through this...please if someone can help call me at 7606801240 thamk you and god bless you june Castillo

Chartres - posted on 12/04/2013

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I just need all the help I can. I just lost my mom in march and she was always theism to make sure that had one. I do work but I can only pay for bills and food one the table I don't ask for government SSgt and I think some people need them more than I do. I just don't want the heart broken when the come down the stairs, their will be nothing under the tree. I don't know haw to explain, y sana never came. please help me or send me an address thanks can get help I appreciate it :'(

Diane - posted on 12/10/2012

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www.freecycle.org

freecycle is a board that people use to "upcycle" stuff. you can post a "want" or put stuff up as "offer". everything is free.

Sheri - posted on 11/30/2009

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Hi i would put your name in for a hamper in your communty. You phone the food bank place. They give you Christmas food and gifts for the kids. We did that for years. If your mom is willing to help I would ask her to help with the SANTA gifts and the hamper gifts for extra. Keep them busy with friends and family and they wont notice. I tell my kids that Christmas this year will be very tight. They understand and no that there is other kids out there that don't have clothes or food or SANTA so we as a family do what we can afford. Roof over our head and food on the table. That is more important.

Michelle - posted on 11/28/2009

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I had a year when we could barely afford to buy groceries so I bought X-mas from a thrift store. I had explained to the kids when they opened there used gifts that my choices where to buy used or not at all and they were like oh okay mommy thank you for trying. Also you can see if their is a toys for tots at your police station or fire depast and some churches also do gift for families in need. Another option is buy what they need (socks shoes underpants and a cheap dollar store toy)

Tracey - posted on 11/22/2009

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my parents didn't buy us presents one year but they didn't explain why, personally I would buy something or if you are crafty make something special for each of the kids. The great thing is there are places out there that help families in need, asking for help is hard I have had to do it on occasion. I always put the kids stuff on layby in July so that by xmas they have gifts but it has only cost me a small amount each week, I also have Hamper King payments which means we get heaps of food, lollies (that I don't buy during the year) come at xmas time along with vouchers for the big stores for the older one.

JEWEL - posted on 11/21/2009

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YOURNOT THE WORST PARENT EVER. gOD KNOWS I'VE BEEN THERE. YOU MIGHT WANT TO SIGN THEM UP FOR TOYS FOR TOTS. THE SALVATION ARMY DOES SOMETHING ALSO. LAST YEAR WHEN I WASN'T WORKING I SAT DOWN AND EXPLAINED TO MT SON THAT I LOVED HIM AND WANTED TO GIVE HIM THE WORLD BUT RIGHT NOW I COULDN'T. I ALSO EXPLAIN TOP HIM THAT WHAT I COULDNT DO FOR CHRISTMAS I'LL DO WITH MY INCOME TAX.
I FIND IT IMPORTANT TO TALK TO XAVION ABOUT EVERYTHING BECAUSE HE GOES TO SCHOOL WITH ALOT OF RICH KIDS AND I DONT WANT HIS SELF ESTEEM BROKEN BECAUSE I CANT AFFORD ALL THE STUFF HIS CLASSMATES HAVE SO MY SUGGESTION TO YOU IS TO ALWAYS KEEP YOUR KIDS INFORMED SO THAT THEY WILL UNDERSTAND WHATS GOING ON AT HOME. PLEASE PLEASE DON'T GET DOWN CAUSE YOU CANT AFFORD I. JUST KEEP PRAYING AND MY GOD WILL WORK IT OUT


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Ginny - posted on 11/19/2009

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I went through that one year.Buy them one small gift and tell them the situation and let them know they will get gifts from other family members.That was fine with my kids.Plus i used to tell my kids that i had no money for santa to get their toys.I told them he needs money to make the toys and since i had no I could not do it.You could also go to a Dollar store and buy small gifts really cheap.

Dina - posted on 11/19/2009

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Beside all the agencies that everyone mention. If your children are like mine they like electronic games. About 5yrs ago. I had to move from Apartment to another, it just happen to be around Christmas so I had to use my savings and my Christmas bonus for the move. What I did was go to the dollar store, sometimes they have nice thing, Gamestop (gaming store) sell used games for a fraction of the cost. Also places like Marshalls or any hit or miss store will have a lot of nice things and inexpensive. Consignment stores, Or you can tell everyone that they have make there own Christmas gift to give to each other. My Children know that the best gifts are the one they make. My oldest at time was in High School and in one of his shop class made a presonalize coffee mug at school, someone said that he was cheap, he responded "My mom isn't a materialitic person she perfers for me to make a gift because it's unique and no one else has that unlike a store bought gift which million of people have the same thing," Christmas doesn't have to ruin just because you are having bad times. Also Kids bounce back as long as they know your happy eventually they will be happy, they may be angry at the time but they know that everything you do is for them. This is just a bump in the road. God willing everything eventually will turn for the better.

Brandy - posted on 11/19/2009

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last year I was in the same boat..and looks like it wont change much this year..I contacted Toys4Tots and also a friend asked a church 2 sponsor our family and my children had the best christmas they've ever had last year! Dont feel ashamed 2 ask 4 help..people enjoy helping those in need if they can

Vanessa - posted on 11/18/2009

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have you checked with any agentcies. like salvation army, toys for tots, christ child, even talk to the kids teacher who can direct u in the way to go. People will help during xmas time. Just dont give up.

IKEA - posted on 11/17/2009

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GET THEM ONE GIFT FOR CHRISTMAS BELIEVE ME I KNOW IT IS HARD I RECENTLY LOST MY JOB, BEEN DEPRESSED JUST THINK POSITIVE AND IT WILL GET BETTER

Ginger - posted on 11/16/2009

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You could call your local county Department of Human Resources, they usually have programs that help with kids Chirstmas. I would do it soon though. Also, the local Salvation Army helps with Christmas presents for children and of course churches. Also, a lot of stores have angel trees that you can place your kids names on and people donate gifts appropriate for the age of the children. I hope this helps.

Toni - posted on 11/13/2009

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I have had to sit and explain to my kids that Christmas is going to be bleak as the money is not there and in being honest with my children I found out that the most important part of Christmas to them was the dinner and time together with our family, through my tears I told them we would still have the dinner, but I didn't have the funds to get them the things they wanted. I then swallowed my pride and called Salvation Army and was able to get them some gifts, I also went to the dollar store for stocking stuffers. Just be honest and they will understand. Try not to feel like a failure, you are not, and they understand more then we give them credit for. Good luck and have a great Holiday season.

Sara - posted on 11/13/2009

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Quoting krista:

Thanks everyone and thanks for the idea they are all great. The worst is when they are making out their Christmas list and hearing your messages make me cry because sometimes if I didn't make the decisions with their fathers I would be where I'm at today and it make me made that they have to deal with my mistakes. My mom is great help but I feel bad depending on her.


Krista, life doesn't come with a guide book.  I am sure you did, and are doing, the best you can. 



 



As for Christmas, rememeber, it is one day out of the year. That one day should not lead you to feeling depressed or inadequate, or even in debt (I really can't understand people that need to run up a credit account to feel good about Christmas).  Things are rough for many people right now, in fact, charities are having a difficult time keeping up with the requests for help. Keep it simple, emphasize being together.  I grew up very poor, but I remember nearly every Christmas. Very few gifts, maybe a solid chocolate santa, or new markers, but I remember making decoratins for our tree, listening to the music, even walking through the light festivals and hearing carolers. 



 



You can only do what you can, and believe me, kids today (and even parents) have a distorted view of what is appropriate under the tree.

Jackie - posted on 11/12/2009

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I understand when times are difficult, but try to explain to them the real meaning of christmas, that it's not about the gifts and santa. But let them know that you will try to keep the gifts to a minimam as this is a very small part of christmas.

Krista - posted on 11/12/2009

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Thanks everyone and thanks for the idea they are all great. The worst is when they are making out their Christmas list and hearing your messages make me cry because sometimes if I didn't make the decisions with their fathers I would be where I'm at today and it make me made that they have to deal with my mistakes. My mom is great help but I feel bad depending on her.

Stacey - posted on 11/12/2009

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Some local churches and or food banks help with christmas "wish lists". Also there is more layaway aviable due to the ecomony .One more suggestion ,you can always get a pic of a toy ,and wrap it in a box so they have somn to open.Let them now that they are in yr heart/thoughts.You'll get them somn as soon as u can. Goodluck!!

Silvia - posted on 11/12/2009

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Many churches are funding family activities for children. Look into your community church and find out if they have a program. I'm sure they will guide you in the right direction if they don't have nothing going on.

Leslie - posted on 11/12/2009

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Sometimes your local churches will help. I'm not sure how it works, whether you go to the pastor and ask for help or if a member of the congregation goes to the pastor on your family's behalf. They will get the children gifts. Also, your local social services may be able to get you on the Angel tree.Good luck I know it's tough. We are going to be in the same boat this year also.

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If your kids are old enough to understand explain to them whats happening, try buying second hand or from charity shops. Kids need to understand life isnt always easy and they cant always have everything they may not understand now but they will when they are parents themselves. Keep your chin up and try not to go into more debt just to keep them happy

Beth - posted on 11/11/2009

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I can suggest, since I've had to explain this more than once to my own children, that you simply sit down and be candid with them. If they are old enough to understand, that's a blessing in itself, if they are young, you may just have to say Santa might not be able to give a lot this Christmas. Also, I know it's embarrassing and feels horrible, but there are programs out there that can help. My son's school allowed us to pick out a few items for him one year and another year he was able to go shopping with a program called "Shop with a Cop." Also, there are some assistance programs through certain counties and many churches have no problem stepping in to help. You and your kids may not get the things you'd want, but it's better than nothing and it's the thought and kindness that matters. Hope that helps!

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