Mom Forces Her Kids To Give Her A Gift On Their Birthdays To ‘Thank Her’ For Carrying Them For 9 Months

This is not a normal family tradition.

adult daughter giving mother a gift Evgeny Atamanenko / Shutterstock

Traditionally on birthdays, we recognize the person whose birthday it is, not necessarily the person who gave birth to them. However, one mom attempted to change that in a birthday tradition that one family carried on for years — until it threatened to tear the family apart.

A mom expected her four children to celebrate her on each of their birthdays.

“Every year on every single one of our birthdays, we're expected to celebrate my mom as well,” one of the mom's daughters posted on Reddit. “We've done it since we were little. It was taught to me as 'giving thanks for carrying + giving birth to us'.”


While the tradition is one that seems to be gaining more steam as more people propose celebrating the mom's "Giving Birth Day," the 25-year-old woman explained how their matriarchal tradition developed over the years and has led to their mother seeking out more valuable gifts with a higher monetary value.



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“As we got older, we're now expected to get her monetary gifts (and not cards, or homemade stuff),” she wrote in the post. “My youngest brother isn't expected to give much, but my 16-year-old sister and 18-year-old 2nd brother work so they're expected to give gifts too.”

The problem arose when the 25-year-old’s birthday rolled around and her 16-year-old sister admitted she wanted to get her more, but couldn’t because of their mother’s pressure to get her a certain necklace.

“I asked how much it was, and my sister said it was $300,” she explained. “I honestly lost it on our mom and chewed into her later that afternoon when my mom opened her gifts after me.”

The confrontation led to the mother kicking her daughter out and giving her the silent treatment.


“It's been over two weeks and mom won't answer my calls,” she continued in the conclusion. “She's been posting on Facebook inspiration quotes about letting go of the toxicity in your life, how blood doesn't equal family, and how hard it is to be a mother.”

She originally thought she was in the right, but grew unsure about her decision considering everyone was on her mother’s side, prompting her to turn to Reddit for advice.

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A lot of people emphasized how narcissistic the tradition feels.

In comments, the daughter revealed that her mother doesn’t hold the same tradition with their grandmother — in other words, their tradition doesn’t extend past their immediate family. The father is also forced into the tradition but supports it despite not receiving gifts or praise for being a parent to those kids.


"This is a classic 'LOOK AT ME!!!!' attention grab from narcs who need constant narc supply," one person pointed out in the comments. "Also, the 'silent treatment' is a classic narc move on children in order to whip them inline," they added. 

In fact, in a TikTok video, marriage and family therapist Kati Morton, LMFT, listed some of the signs of a narcissistic mother, many of which appear to describe this mother's behavior. For example, Morton explains that a mother who "sees you as an extension of her," perhaps by expecting to be celebrated on someone else's birthday, is an indication of a narcissistic mother. 



Morton also notes that sharing personal information about you with others and playing the victim, two things this mother did when she posted on Facebook about her family's situation, may indicate narcissism.


As the person noted in the comments, the silent treatment is also an emotionally abusive tactic that narcissists use as a form of control. It's a form of emotional abuse that can lead to lasting emotional damage well into adulthood.

As most people in the comments supported the daughter, she updated her original post with an edit thanking everyone for their support and explaining her next steps. 

"I think it's really eye opening and I'm going to try to find a therapist," she wrote.


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Isaac Serna-Diez is a writer who focuses on entertainment and news, social justice, and politics.