Is This Pushy?

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I’m slightly horrified by this New York Times article on "push presents."
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In the recovery room, her husband, Paul, presented her with a pair of diamond earrings. "I
was on cloud nine,” Ms. Slosberg said. She added, “I wonder what 17 hours of labor will get me next time?”

On one hand, it does seem sweet to commemorate your child’s birth with something special that you’ll have for years. On the other hand, it seems absurd to expect/demand a Tiffany ring or Louis Vuitton diaper bag from your guy because you endured childbirth and you need a prize at the end. (Um, I thought that was the kid!) And unless you’re rolling in dough, I think there are lots and lots of things (like diapers, food, clothes, toys… heck, college!) that you could spend that money on.

I think I’d be more down with a small, heartfelt gift, but this excess just seems, well, excessive. So what’s your take—did you get a push present? Would you push for one? Yay or No Way?

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  1. by Annie

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:00 am

    No manner of bling or any other type of present could have competed for my attention with the ‘prize’ of my beautiful newborn babies.
    I received a beautiful present on our first wedding anniversary after my first baby was born and my husband said it was in recognition of a difficult pregnancy and his amazement that I brought our first child into the world. It was very nice- but I wouldn’t have thought less of him if I never got it.
    The whole concept of ‘push’ presents is kind of obscene to me. The miracle of that beautiful baby is present enough for me.

  2. by Terina

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:03 am

    i did not get a push present. what i got was better. i got to be knocked out for an hour after they took her via c-section. the first time they let me stay awake and beg for ice chips from nurses that were halfway across the room. push presents sound just funny to me. kind of like giving teenagers rewards for things that they should have learned to do when they were little kids.

  3. by Kim

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:13 am

    I agree that the baby is the best present ever, but it would be nice for a partner to acknowledge in some way, at some point, in some universe, that pregnancy and delivery are not easy, or even pleasant. For some of us, just a vasectomy would do nicely. (I had the Essure procedure once I discovered neither of us had to be cut open in order to achieve permanent birth control, but you get the idea.)
    Push present, no. Hemmorroid present? Maybe.

  4. by Elizabeth

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:15 am

    My “push” present was, and is, a wonderfully caring and thoughtful husband who is a devoted dad and an equal parenting partner. That’s the gift that keeps on giving.

  5. by Jana

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:16 am

    Its a bit obscene to me to ask for something for giving birth to a child. Mind you, I was not a mom who bonded straightaway with her kid. But the experience, the love of my family and my husband will always be with me. Besides, we ended up needing formula (in addition to diapers) any push present I may have received would probably have been hocked to pay for that! :-)

  6. by Tracy Rizzo

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:26 am

    The present is the baby! The sad fact is some people need jewelry for everything-I am just glad I am not remotely like that.

  7. by Besu

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:30 am

    After 17 hours of labor with no progress, my reward was a blissful epidural. I don’t care in the least about diamonds or a fancy purse for my cats to chew on. Relief from pain was the best gift of all at that point. The emergency c-section and baby were a welcome conclusion to the ordeal. Oh, and after not being allowed to eat for almost 24 hours, my hospital supper that night was absolutely divine.

  8. by Tara

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:41 am

    I love the idea of a push present. My husband wanted to commemorate the birth of our daughter with a piece of jewelry that contained all three of our birthstones. His thinking was that I could wear it forever and be reminded of this miracle that we created. I loved the idea too.
    The problem with the whole thing was that I had to take maternity leave without pay for weeks ahead of the delivery, so we were really short on cash. I told him to forget it at the time, but I’m hoping that he remembers some day and follows through.

  9. by Brittany

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:52 am

    First, can I just say I hate the term ‘push present’?
    I don’t think anyone is saying it’s ok, ever, to DEMAND a gift, no matter what the situation. And there’s no reason a post-labor gift (Maybe we could call them ‘Labor Day gifts’, which sounds much nicer?) has to be something ridiculously expensive like jewelry or a new Gucci purse. Both times I gave birth, my family and my in-laws gave me lovely gifts, things I could use to indulge myself– soft cozy socks, an Aveda hair-product I really enjoy, bath oils, new magazines, and of course, chocolate. This really helped to lift my spirits as I always feel a bit depressed for about a week after giving birth.
    For our second baby, I asked my husband to surprise me with a nice gift after labor and he gave me a cozy pair of pajamas. It was sweet, and hey, after all that work — all that exhausting, exhausting, body distorting, exhausting work– why shouldn’t we moms get a little something special for ourselves? (In addition to the baby, of course)

  10. by RyLa's Mom

    On December 6, 2007 at 12:00 pm

    Now I feel really bad – but I got a really nice gift just before both of my children were born. I got a new wedding ring (my husband hated that we could only afford a simple gold band – he wanted me to have something flashier) before my son was born and I got a lovely Jade necklace just before my daughter was born (Her middle name is Jade). I wasn’t expecting them and certainly didn’t tell him to come up with something. But – they were both gifts from him to thank me for having his children. I thought it was sweet – although I’m guessing now I’m in the minority.

  11. by RyLa's Mom

    On December 6, 2007 at 12:00 pm

    Now I feel really bad – but I got a really nice gift just before both of my children were born. I got a new wedding ring (my husband hated that we could only afford a simple gold band – he wanted me to have something flashier) before my son was born and I got a lovely Jade necklace just before my daughter was born (Her middle name is Jade). I wasn’t expecting them and certainly didn’t tell him to come up with something. But – they were both gifts from him to thank me for having his children. I thought it was sweet – although I’m guessing now I’m in the minority.

  12. by Stacey

    On December 6, 2007 at 12:03 pm

    Everyone my husband worked with at the time, kept telling him he needed to get me a “birthing gift.” I hadn’t actually heard of it before and I think it’s a little strange but we redecorated our bedroom right before I was due and I told him that that would be my gift – that he couldn’t buy anything else.

  13. by Amanda

    On December 6, 2007 at 12:10 pm

    No RyLa’s Mom it is sweet!! You shouldn’t feel bad at all. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with it if your husband decides to get it on his own because he loves you! :) And you can afford it. :) I just thought some of the women in the original article (apparently a growing trend) who literally did demand gifts from their husbands were kindof missing the point.
    (And Brittany, I agree—I think it’s absolutely lovely and appropriate to get little treats from family/friends that make you more comfortable and relaxed.)

  14. by Tracie

    On December 6, 2007 at 12:35 pm

    I did not get push presents for either one of my children. I agree that the child is the gift. I think our society is so focused on material possessions that we forget to enjoy the simpler things. I enjoyed their births and having my sweet husband there with me to help with the hard work of caring for our newborns. That is a more precious gift than any piece of jewelry he could have given me!

  15. by Whitney

    On December 6, 2007 at 1:03 pm

    I received a lovely gift with the birth of both of my children, and although I WHOLEHEARTEDLY agree that the baby is the best gift ever, the extra bit of bling was a wonderful and thoughtful surprise. I can understand how it would be viewed by some, but I get to tell the story of the birth of both of my sweet children each time anyone notices my bit of bling, which is a wonderful and fun way to relive the beauty of becoming a mother, and far better than making people sit down to view the video (which we thankfully did not do)

  16. by Jackson's Mom

    On December 6, 2007 at 1:05 pm

    I did get a push present/mother’s day gift. It was a man-made emerald cut emerald solitare ring – my son’s birth stone. I read about it in a small article in a baby mag. and we thought it was a cute idea. My cousin is a jewler and so it didn’t cost much. I didn’t demand it and he didn’t insist on it but we just liked the idea. Now everytime i wear it and i can’t be with my son, it reminds me of him and the fact that i’m now a mommy.

  17. by Jackson's Mom

    On December 6, 2007 at 1:05 pm

    I did get a push present/mother’s day gift. It was a man-made emerald cut emerald solitare ring – my son’s birth stone. I read about it in a small article in a baby mag. and we thought it was a cute idea. My cousin is a jewler and so it didn’t cost much. I didn’t demand it and he didn’t insist on it but we just liked the idea. Now everytime i wear it and i can’t be with my son, it reminds me of him and the fact that i’m now a mommy.

  18. by oh amanda

    On December 6, 2007 at 2:04 pm

    I got a mother’s heart ring and a baby shoes charm for my bracelet. My hubby gave it to me while the doctor sewed me up for 45 minutes. It was a sweet gift that I cherish b/c it was given during the whirlwind of my daughter’s first hours.

  19. by CE

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:12 pm

    My husband got me a gift after each of our children was born. We have been doing this in our community for many many years, it is by no means a new idea. I have never heard it called a push present before, and I think that’s kind of gross. The gift isn’t a reward for pushing, it is a thank you from the husband to the wife for enduring 9 months of difficulty and for bringing his child into the world because he certainly could not have had children without her help :) Jewelry is the traditional gift in our community, but certainly no one is expected to splurge on this if they don’t have enough money for diapers, etc. For those of us that do, it think it is a beautiful way to remember each of my children when I wear my beautiful jewelry.

  20. by Megan

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm

    I got birth gifts with all three of my children. I think its nice for an acknowledgement of the pregnancy and a memory of the birth.

  21. by Andrea

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:28 pm

    What are you going to do if you don’t get one?? Not push????

  22. by Amanda

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:31 pm

    I certainly didn’t expect a present and didn’t bring it up with DH, but he got me a beautiful vase of roses the night I had my son. And for my first mother’s day, he got me a beautiful ring of my son’s birthstone surrounded by diamonds that I had picked out month’s earlier. It was very thoughtful of him and I love that ring.

  23. by MamaChristy

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:47 pm

    I didn’t get a push present, but that’s just because I wanted to spend the money on nice baby things that would last. Won’t get one this time, either. I wanted this baby a bit more than he did, so the baby is my gift.
    That said, I know a woman whose kids is both in high school and she got a Rolex watch for the first and a diamond bezel for that watch for the second. I thought it was sweet because the husband did it because he wanted her to have it, not because she demanded it.

  24. by Stephanie

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:53 pm

    My little beauty was the best present of all – more priceless and precious than any material object could have ever been.
    If I were to receive a material “gift,” I would prefer something practical – for the baby or for me (a warm meal, a nursing tank, comfy pajamas).

  25. by April

    On December 6, 2007 at 3:55 pm

    I have not heard the term “push present” until recently and it does make the whole idea of a husband giving his wife a gift after labor seem obscene. I did receive some very nice jewelry after I gave birth to our first son and was surprised and thrilled that my husband was so thoughtful. I had no idea that it was something he had been planning ever since we found out we were pregnant but it made my delivery day even more special to know that I had such a wonderful husband and now, a wonderful family. We are due with our 2nd baby in 2 weeks and I have told him that I do not expect nor want another gift b/c watching my family grow is such a blessing in itself. I can’t imagine who these women are who expect a gift but I’m sure that if you are asking for a gift that the standard must be pretty high???

  26. by Angela Williams

    On December 6, 2007 at 4:52 pm

    I haven’t heard of anyone calling it a “push present” before, but I have always said.. a mom deserves something for all the hard work she has endured for the past nine months, the labor and delivery and what little recovery she has before she is up and at them again. I think every mom should get something for her that isn’t baby related or pregnancy related (those are nice, but sometime you want something just for you as a woman and a wife. Now, it doesn’t have to be Tiffany earrings or a car, but it should reflect appreciation to her from her hubby. Every circumstance will be different, but maybe an afternoon to get your hair and nails done or maybe an ipod or simply a new outfit… just a little something to say thanks for doing all the work! I don’t think that is too obscene.

  27. by Angela Williams

    On December 6, 2007 at 4:56 pm

    let me clarify… I don’t think it should be expected nor should a husband feel like her has to… I just think it would be nice. And yes, the child and loving husband is more than enough … that is really all anyone wants (as do I).

  28. by Mary

    On December 6, 2007 at 5:02 pm

    No push present here. But my husband’s boss’s wife requested and received $28,000 Tiffany earrings. What a nice college fund that could have established…

  29. by Jennifer

    On December 6, 2007 at 7:20 pm

    I did not receive a push present… although I had MANY women ask me if I did. While it can seem like a nice sentiment or a romantic gesture – I also see it as a bit obnoxious. Especially when you know the man didn’t “think if it on his own”. I imagine most of these men were marched into Tiffany by their wives!

  30. by judy

    On December 6, 2007 at 7:55 pm

    @andrea: LOL!!!!

  31. by Michaela

    On December 6, 2007 at 8:37 pm

    Wow… people are so into “stuff”! It’s out of hand! With the birth of our first child, my husband wrote me the sweetest love letter. This meant more to me than a measly pair of diamond earrings ever would.

  32. by Kim

    On December 6, 2007 at 9:22 pm

    I did get a “push present” – only because a co-worker of his had suggested it to my husband when I was pregnant with my first child. I’m not really too big on jewelry, but when each of my girls was born my husband gave me some type of jewelry with their birthstone in it. When they get old enough to appreciate it I plan on passing it on to them.

  33. by Victoria

    On December 6, 2007 at 11:00 pm

    I think the thing to note here is that each family does what is best for them…whether that be sentimental gifts, practical gifts, or no gifts. I think that’s wonderful.
    In my case, my husband gave me a necklace with three stones (big, medium, and small) to represent our new family. Not a push present…that’s totally missing the point. It was a gift to commemorate a transition. I also gave HIM something. We didn’t plan it. It just happened that way.

  34. by Chief Family Officer

    On December 7, 2007 at 12:10 am

    My husband gave me Mommy Tags (http://www.mommytags.com/) after the birth of both our children. I love them, they’re affordable, and they commemorate the births. No, I didn’t receive them in the hospital (he had to order them after the baby was born, after all), but nothing could have topped the way he stayed up all night changing diapers and helping me breastfeed anyway.

  35. by Heidi

    On December 7, 2007 at 3:38 am

    I think it’s sweet. I mean, guys are kind of on the outside looking in on the whole process. It’s a way to make them feel like they’re doing something to acknowledge how much they appreciate what you’ve been through. I didn’t get one, nor did I expect one. I certainly wasn’t the slightest bit concerned about gifts after my child was born! It would have been sweet, though, during labor. Something to distract me… that part was tough! The baby is MORE than enough once it’s over, but (call me a bad mom…) there were times during labor that I had a hard time remembering why I had gotten myself into that position!
    Anyway, they should not be expected by any means, and I don’t think they should be hugely expensive, but something nice and heartfelt is a really sweet gesture.

  36. by JennyC.No3

    On December 7, 2007 at 10:30 am

    I wouldn’t call it a push present but my Husband did give me a “Mother and Child” pendant / necklace after I gave birth to my first child this past February.
    I think it was a super sweet gesture and I certainly don’t expect to get another peice of jewelry after (God willing) I have another child. But if I do, I certainly won’t complain!!
    Kim, I love your comment … “Push present, no. Hemmorroid present? Maybe.”. Too funny!

  37. by ratphooey

    On December 7, 2007 at 10:30 am

    I received a present upon the birth of our first child. Not from my husband, but my father-in-law, an old-world European who’s not good at expressing his feelings in words. It was his way of thanking me for producing his first grandchild. It was a lovely ring, with coral and diamonds, that had been in his family for three generations. I was pleased to receive it, because I knew what it signified to him.

  38. by Cindy H.

    On December 7, 2007 at 11:06 am

    With the birth of my first daughter this past March, I never even thought of asking (or expecting) my husband to present me with a gift for giving birth to our child. I didn’t have a baby because he asked me to – we had one because we wanted to. I think the support of husbands through pregnancy and delivery is enough. It’s hard for them to see us go through difficult times. I know it was hard for my husband to watch the pain of our natural delivery and he was pushing just as hard as I was – does that mean I should have given him a gift?

  39. by Karen @ A Healthy Balance

    On December 7, 2007 at 1:39 pm

    I think it would be sweet if the guy got you a little something, but certainly not because it’s expected. Things lose their meaning when they’re expected. My husband bought me flowers after our 1st child was born. After our 2nd, he bought me a potted plant. I still have the plant. Whenever I take care of it, I’m reminded that he gave it to me when our son was born.

  40. by hil

    On December 7, 2007 at 10:53 pm

    My husband and I had joked about the “push present” before our son was born. So in the hospital, he brought me a pair of socks from the gift shop…They are still worn, still in good shape, and I laugh a bit every time I put them on.
    After #2, I think I should get to have a #3 :)

  41. by Stacy

    On December 8, 2007 at 4:07 am

    I did get a “push present” – a beautiful pearl bracelet with my son’s name and birthstone on it. It wasn’t expected, but it was greatly appreciated, and I feel special evertime I look at it.

  42. by Cole's Mama

    On December 8, 2007 at 11:54 am

    I actually gave my husband a gift after our son’s birth. I had purchased the Willow Tree “New Dad” figurine a few weeks before our little guy arrived. I wrapped it and my sister brought it to the hospital. Moms get so much attention when the little ones come. I wanted to have something special to give this amazing man to commemorate our little guy’s birth.

  43. by Cole's Mama

    On December 8, 2007 at 11:54 am

    I actually gave my husband a gift after our son’s birth. I had purchased the Willow Tree “New Dad” figurine a few weeks before our little guy arrived. I wrapped it and my sister brought it to the hospital. Moms get so much attention when the little ones come. I wanted to have something special to give this amazing man to commemorate our little guy’s birth.

  44. by Cynthia

    On December 9, 2007 at 12:17 am

    A co-worker told me that I should tell my husband about this trend. She got a nice piece of jewelry after informing her husband. I felt that the money would be better spent on a nice gift for our child. My husband did get me a nice necklace for my first Mothers Day, and I think this meant just as much as something received on the birth day would have. I do think the gifts that include the child’s birthstone or name are a sweet idea, but it should not be expected.

  45. by MGG (Mom of twins)

    On December 9, 2007 at 8:13 pm

    No present was needed – I had 2 precious angels! After a very tough, worrisome pregnancy (twins that were monoamnionic & monochoronic) – all my husband & I both wanted was 2 healthy babies. And that is exactly what I got! Nothing could have been sweeter.

  46. by Alisha

    On December 10, 2007 at 2:31 pm

    Yes, that was an excessive push present. I have gotten a special charm for my charm bracelet at the birth of both of my children. The first one was a “motherhood” charm and the second was a charm of a dove with an olive branch in his mouth because my son’s name means “peace”. I think that’s pretty cool.

  47. by Angela

    On December 11, 2007 at 11:33 am

    Ummm… why does anyone even care who wants/get/feels-they-deserve a “push present?” So you don’t need or want one or agree with the idea… but why be so harshly judgemental with those who do? Some posts are brutal and nasty. Just because a person gets or wants a present doesn’t mean they don’t find their new babies to be the greatest gift. I didn’t get one, but certainly don’t demean those who do (or who even feel they deserve one). Who am I to say what others do or do not deserve? Harsh!

  48. by debbie

    On December 13, 2007 at 10:07 pm

    When I had my first child my mother-in-law took my husband shopping right after the baby was born. They came back with all kinds of presents for the baby and my husband but not one thing for me. I would never have expected a gift but even a card for recognition would have been nice, since they spent so much time and money shopping when my husband should have been at the hospital with us.
    My second child my husband didn’t even bother to come to the hospital until after he was born so I think the women who have husbands that are truly involved should consider that the best gift in the world.
    Both my kids were born healthy and with no problems so I think that God was with me and gave me a better gift than anything material.

  49. by Michelle

    On December 17, 2007 at 6:03 pm

    I received a dishwasher for my “present” after my 2nd child..I have a newborn and received a pool…I dont feel men should have to buy something, that is just crazy..Both presents are something for the whole family and will last a long time.. It is his way of showing me he appreciates me and what I do as a mom !

  50. by Joni

    On January 1, 2008 at 5:29 pm

    I didn;t get a “push present”. I think the idea is silly. Who would want a gift when you get one when your baby is born.
    Kids think waiting for their birthday or Christmas to get gifts is a long time. They should try waiting for 9 months then going thru all the pain. But it’s worth it in the end.

  51. by First Time Mom

    On January 27, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    I got a lovely push present and every time I wear my earrings, I think of Trey. Yes, having my child was the best gift, but if my husband wanted to surprise me with another gift in honor of the occasion, I say let him!

  52. by Jenna jameson hardcore.

    On May 29, 2008 at 9:40 am

    Hardcore jenna jameson.

    Jenna jameson hardcore.