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keobooks's avatar

Moms: Did you get a "push present" after delivering? Everyone else, have you even HEARD of this before?

Asked by keobooks (14301points) June 16th, 2011

I was just reading some articles about “push presents.” They look like outrageously expensive gives just for mommy after giving birth. I didn’t get one, unless you count my daughter. I don’t feel deprived.

Is this an old tradition, or some new thing made up?

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41 Answers

Seaofclouds's avatar

I think it’s something newly made up. I don’t remember hearing about these when I had my son back in 2002, but I’ve heard a lot about them recently. I didn’t get one back in 2002 and I didn’t get one 3 weeks ago when I had my younger son either. I didn’t want one though. My husband and I talked about it and I told him I didn’t see the point in it.

I hadn’t even heard of push presents until a few months into my pregnancy (so earlier this year).

geeky_mama's avatar

Never heard of this. I didn’t get anything material as a “reward” for delivering our children. Perhaps this is something only a certain socio-economic class gets..because personally I can’t imagine having my husband splurge on something expensive when babies are so expensive (the diapers, the gadgets, starting the college fund, etc.) as it is.
Besides..the only sort of things I would want (a new Kindle, an iPad) I wouldn’t be able to use during the first hectic year of meeting an infant’s primary needs.

ucme's avatar

I’ve certainly never heard of it. Seems to me the “present” is the gift of life you’ve bestowed on the baba & what a fantastic prezzie you get in return.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

While I’ve never heard that term before, I am familiar with the tradition. A SIL was upset when our brother didn’t give her a present when their first child was born in 1982. When #2 came around, he gave her a beautiful sapphire ring. I thought it might have to do something with the SIL’s ethnic culture, but maybe it is just a tradition in her family.

According to this article, the term is relatively new, but the tradition has been around for awhile. It sounds like a jewelry store’s marketing ploy.

poisonedantidote's avatar

I thought “push present” was some kind of new horrible term for after-birth, never head of this.

YoBob's avatar

Please tell me you are joking!

As if the commercialization of every other minor occasion isn’t enough, now somebody has the bright idea to turn the act of childbirth into another occasion to blackmail your spouse into giving you guilt gifts.

Holy crap ladies… wasn’t the baby shower enough????

LuckyGuy's avatar

I’m with @poisonedantidote . I was expecting it to be after birth or an undeveloped fetus.

I’m not sure which definition I find sadder, the afterbirth/undeveloped fetus or the commercialization of the birthing event.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Oh sure! I got a HUGE push present! The hospital bill.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

No I didn’t and yes I’ve heard of this – it’s part of the world where one’s love is examined according to whether or not they get their wives the same things other husbands got theirs – aka the giant and same looking engagement ring, the million wedding and baby showers, the push present, the overnight nanny, etc. It’s a world I look at through TV shows and laugh my ass off.

OpryLeigh's avatar

I only heard of it once I started following STFU, parents I was always under the impression that the little human being was the reward for “pushing”!

Aethelwine's avatar

I’m a lady @YoBob and I agree with you. I’ve never heard of this and I’m dumbfounded.

materialism, yuck

Is this more of an upper class thing?

Cupcake's avatar

I thought you were talking about pooping during delivery.

Materialism, materialism, materialism. Isn’t my newborn the greatest gift of all??

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

I don’t understand why people are being so judgmental over this tradition. So what if others participate in it? It doesn’t mean that you have to. Some people give gifts at Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, birthdays, the loss of a tooth, an engagement, wedding, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, etc. Why should this be any different than the others? We either choose to participate in the gift-giving or not.

And yes, just like any gift-giving scenario, I suppose it can become a sort of competition or public display based upon materialism. If you don’t like it, just opt out.

zenvelo's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer Because it isn’t really a tradition, it is a manifestation of a greedy sub-culture that judges love by material things. It’s as ridiculous as the TV Sweet 16 birthday parties. If the recognition of motherhood is only in a piece of jewelry, it demeans the beauty of the moment of birth.

zenvelo's avatar

Do mom’s get a “push present” if it was a Caesarian???

SpatzieLover's avatar

Yes, I’ve heard of them. I think they are mainly for the “nouveau riche”...Not the ordinary people of the population. It’s for people that are concerned about how other people perceive them….they need their husband to shower them with a lavish gift so they feel appreciated once they’ve “ruined” their body for a child

Later, they will also get the gift of plastic surgery to “fix” the wreckage from the pregnancy. Then, their husband gets them a “new boob/tummy tuck gift” like diamonds and a new “boob” wardrobe.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@zenvelo Do mom’s get a “push present” if it was a Caesarian??? Yep. usually those ladies get a tummy tuck and have plastic surgery planned for directly after the birth.

Welcome to the Beverly Hills lifestyle ;)

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’ve never heard of it called that but I am familiar with husband’s gifting the wife, mostly to celebrate she and the baby came through ok and for adding to his familial happiness. In some families, a baby is a looked forward and planned for event that imparts status to the husband- happy healthy wife, happy healthy children. Family, friends and acquaintances like to see the man appreciates his wife’s part (kinda the precarious part) of growing then birthing the child. The woman likes to feel appreciated for her diligence and care in growing, supporting at the expense of her own body and then birthing that child.

Man alive, I’d want a sapphire too!

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

Alright, I now have a better understanding. @zenvelo, thank you for unintentionally making me do a bit more research. When I read the Wikipedia article linked above, it just seemed like an old British and Indian tradition that worked its way to the US. (And yes, it is a tradition, whether we were aware of it or not.)

The tradition of husbands giving their wives gifts to commemorate the birth of a baby has some longstanding cultural roots. In England, the man is expected to buy the woman an elegant ring. In India, a husband bestows a set of gold jewelry upon his wife—offering more elaborate baubles for boy babies than girls. And recently, some of those customs have made their way over to the U.S. Source

The article also sites some examples of not only why many people aren’t familiar with it, but also a few personal stories from US citizens. It is one thing if a person gives a gift due to a tradition; it is another if they act upon it out of peer pressure or some sort of competition to outdo another.

@zenvelo Loved the comment about the Caesarian birth.
@Neizvestnaya You can have the sapphire. All I’d want is a kiss and an escort home from the hospital…preferably by the father.

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer: My ex was from a Sephardic Russian Jewish family and they had been doing this as far as he knew. In my own family, the Basques and Spaniards did it too, our French and Irish brethren were too poor.

I’m PM you a mailing address for the ring. I hope you get all the hugs and care you want :)

BarnacleBill's avatar

My friend gave his wife a fur coat after the birth of his daughter, and diamond earrings after the birth of their son. She returned the fur coat but kept the earrings.

The_Idler's avatar

The midwife gave my mother a pint of Guinness…

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@SpatzieLover: Those are marketed as “Mommy Makeovers” here. It’s a HUGE business and woman come from all over the states to hide out here, recovering in our local resorts after cosmetic surgeries.

augustlan's avatar

I didn’t get one, and had never heard of them until recently. My step-son “had” to get one for his SO when she gave birth. Personally, I think it’s ridiculous. It’s not a freaking business deal, it’s a baby. Don’t get me wrong, pregnancy and delivery are a huge undertaking, and worthy of recognition. A hug and an “I love you” would suffice. Maybe some flowers.

downtide's avatar

I have never heard of such a thing.

Bellatrix's avatar

I too read the question and thought it was something to do with the birth…

No, no present here apart from three healthy children.

Berserker's avatar

I’ve never heard of this. I think most mothers couldn’t give less of a hoot about push presents, when they’re holding their new born baby. :D

Coloma's avatar

Never heard of them, but, I haven’t given birth for almost 24 years.
I was just ecstatic to be un-pregnant, able to stretch out on my belly again, had a healthy, adorable girl, and…that Champagne and steak dinner in the hospital was awesome! lol

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

@The_Idler Now that is a proper gift.
@downtide Since you live in England, will you ask around?

Bellatrix's avatar

I’m English and my ex husband was English and there were no gifts given after the birth of our children. If it is an English tradition, it must have missed my family and my husbands.

I have heard of it happening, but not routinely.

Amazebyu's avatar

Aren’t flowers enough?

Bellatrix's avatar

A nice sparkly ring would be better. Imagine it on those chapped hands after all that nappy washing…

downtide's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer I will certainly ask. There are a few people at work who have recently had new babies in the families.

Stinley's avatar

I’ve heard of women getting a present from the baby’s father after the birth but not that it was a tradition, if I can make that distinction. I didn’t get a present from my English husband but then he’s from Yorkshire and they do really go in for presents and displays of emotion and such like…

There’s a tradition in the west of Scotland of giving new babies a present of silver coins. Strangers passing a new baby out in its pram will tuck a silver coin under the blanket. Which probably meant a bit more back in the day but 50p (the highest denomination of silver coin) won’t even get you a small bar of chocolate any more :D

keobooks's avatar

From what I’ve seen, most of the “push presents” are things like jewelry. One article I was reading made “hubby” buy her a new car! I don’t like these. They put a pampered spoiled princess into my mind, who wants an excuse for more shinies.

I think that if one was going to give or get push presents, they should be something reflective of the lifestyle change the new baby will bring or acknowledge the hard work. If it’s all about spending big bucks, you can do that too. How about these:

1. Subscription to one of those fancy dine-in gourmet services. I can’t think of the name now, but there are companies that will bring four course meals to your house. It’s like meals on wheels, except it tastes good and it’s expensive. You can dine on all those frozen casseroles later. Start out with some really nice fancy food that nobody taking care of the baby has to cook.

2. Maid service – Even if it’s only for a week or two. Have a maid come in and clean! The house usually becomes a wreck in those first weeks and people try to con relatives into cleaning—but why not just get a maid if you can afford it?

3. All of the snacks and food you weren’t allowed to eat while pregnant (except caffeine if you’re nursing) To me, this is the most affordable and the one I would most appreciate. I had gestational diabetes. And while I still had to be careful for a long time, why not just go nuts and have a day or two of just indulging and eating all the “naughty” foods?

4. Spa time. This one would be tricky, but perhaps someone could come and nanny along while you relax at the spa. Bring the nanny friend (or the real nanny. Why not?) and you get pampered while someone else diapers burps and does everything except nurse. That would be lovely. You rest up and relax and every few hours someone comes in and lets you nurse and then they whisk the baby away so you can get more rest. I am wishing for that right now!

Neizvestnaya's avatar

I’m thinking about this and if I gave birth to our child, I would be thrilled to get a nice gift from husband, why not? I can’t imagine I’d criticize him to get me a nice fur, piece of jewelry, vacation trip or whatever. I wouldn’t demand anything or make him a list but I love presents and would be thankful. If he felt under pressure, we were ill fixed financially and he made noises ahead of time not to be able to get me something then I’d just tell him to not worry because it wouldn’t be requirement to me. I just can’t imagine we as grown adults would be swayed by a marketing opportunity to do this or feel bad if it wasn’t possible.

downtide's avatar

I asked the ladies at work, including the ones with new babies in the family, and no-one has heard of this tradition. Must be a US-only thing.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

@downtide Thanks for checking!

keobooks's avatar

I just found an article the origin of push presents in the US. It’s new. And it was encreated by the diamond industry because the gem has been flagging in popularity over the last few years.

So it’s a “push” alright…

Neizvestnaya's avatar

@keobooks: The evil De Beers? muwah ha ha! I’m not at all surprised. They are the entity responsible for marketing gems previously graded as industrial into “gem quality”. All those SI quality diamonds out there used to be earmarked for tools and such.

WillWorkForChocolate's avatar

Thank God my husband knows he’s much more likely to get nookie for emeralds than he is for diamonds. Plain, clear, expensive things diamonds are…

Can I get a push present several years after the fact? :P

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