Dear Straight Talk: My friend thinks she doesn’t need to get her stepdaughter much for Christmas. She says “Emily” will get gifts from her own mom, and her kids won’t get anything from their dad, so buying less for Emily only balances things. I see the logic, but I was that same girl and it was horrible to receive less on Christmas day than the other kids. Yes, I also received from my “other family.” But when everyone opened gifts and there was comparatively little for me, I felt like I didn’t really belong there. My friend is a generous, warm person, so I am taken aback at her stinginess. — “Santa’s Elf”
Taylor, 15, Santa Rosa: At my house, there are three kids from my stepmom and two from my dad. We are old enough to understand value, so rather than equal numbers of gifts, everyone is “spent on” equally. The different houses are separate entities. What the “other” parent is buying is a matter for that house. Each house is a fair house where nobody feels left out.
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