Wednesday, January 25, 2012

My son has more money than I do now…

DSCF0002The pile of envelopes pictured here aren’t even half of what we got. These are just the ones I managed to hold onto specifically for this photo.

Just as today’s post title states, my son does have more money than I do. A lot more… I never had much of a savings even before most of what I had went back into paying off my credit card debt and student loans I incurred over the past 6 years. I am glad to not have any debt but it does kind of suck that my son is richer than me and he doesn’t even know what money is. Haha! What a lucky kid.

Since my son’s birth, we’ve been receiving traditional envelopes from friends and family stuffed with cash very similar to the ones we received when we got married a couple of years back. The average envelope usually contains one 10,000 yen note or more but there's a catch to all this money. The catch is that the gift giver expects about half of the money they gifted to return to them in the form of a thank you gift. So while you may think you are getting a lot of cash, in reality you’re not. Actually, if anything it causes an inconvenience to the receiver of the gift because they have to go out and look for a return gift. Returning cash isn’t acceptable. I find this to be a pretty ridiculous custom but it’s the way Japan’s been doing it and I doubt my wife or I will be able to change things.

What's the point of giving a gift if you always expect to get something back at an exact predetermined value even? Why not just give a smaller amount and actually give it as a gift! What an idea huh? Of course if the gift receiver has any proper manners and common sense they will send a card or visit in person to say thanks. What more do you want? I still like the Japanese gifting system even though I have problems with it. I know everyone who gives these kinds of gifts genuinely does care and doesn’t feel that this is something they are being forced to do by societal customs. No, that kind of gift giving usually happens during weddings and funerals. Both of which I’ve had plenty of experience with. Winking smile

Here’s to my son’s new found fortune. May he live to see it increase many times over.


  1. Suck it up and deal with it for your son. ;)

  2. Thanks for commenting! I have sucked it up. I put his money into his own bank account too. :)

  3. hahah yea from now on it's not about you anymore :) no more complaints <3 and yea the asian way of gifting is strange, but thankfully chinese don't need to do that. but for weddings in example, its about the same, if you invite me and i gift you lots of cash, i should expect the same back when i invite you to my wedding. -bri

  4. I will try to keep most of my son's stuff on Facebook. But stuff like this is kind of interesting for general Japan culture stuff. Thanks for commenting. It motivates me to write more.