Trying to conceive: Is it hard having a birthday near a holiday?

Guest post by Kate
By: Aβ™₯CC BY 2.0
My husband and I are trying to conceive and it has been a rough road.

We’re fast approaching March which, should we be so lucky to actually conceive a healthy little embryo, would likely result in a December birthday.

People with birthdays close to the holidays often seem to feel cheated somehow and while I’m quite anxious to be pregnant I am stressing over this. I feel crazy for even asking, but (winter-holiday-celebrating) people with December birthdays, do you wish you had your own month?

I’m a spring baby and I love my birthday month, but in the grand scheme of things this is really not something that matters, right?

Comments on Trying to conceive: Is it hard having a birthday near a holiday?

  1. I definitely love having a December birthday. My birthday is the 26th of December which means I get to spend it with family who I might not see so often and in the UK it’s ‘Boxing Day’, a national holiday, so I get the day off work too!

    Growing up, my family always made a special effort to make my birthday celebration distinct from our Christmas celebration so I never did feel I missed out on having my birthday in the summer like my sister.

    Top Tip: don’t wrap December birthday presents in Christmas themed wrapping paper. πŸ™‚

    • My husband was born on Dec. 26, too. I always go out of my way to make it a special day that has nothing to do with Christmas. I absolutely agree about the wrapping paper! And whatever you do, never give a combined Christmas/birthday gift. Ever.

    • But if your birthday’s two days after Valentine’s Day and your husband used Christmas wrapping paper because that’s all he could find, that’s not such a big deal. (Especially when accompanied by half-price chocolate.)

    • I’m a Boxing Day Baby myself! I never felt cheated where my immediate family was concerned, because my folks did a lot to make sure my birthday felt like its own celebration too – no Christmas wrapping paper on my gifts, no combined Xmas/birthday presents, that sort of thing. However, be aware that some relatives will never get the hint. One year our family even got a Christmas card from an aunt and uncle that closed with the postscript, “P.S. Happy Birthday, Jen!” (That was a total bummer, that I didn’t even warrant my own greeting card. Still, my folks and I had a good laugh about how tacky it was at the time.)

    • This for sure! My son’s birthday is New Years Day. I request no Christmas wrapping paper, and we are going to continue making the effort to make his birthday just as special as birthdays away from the holiday. Plus, he’ll never have to go to school on his birthday!

  2. My spouse’s birthday is the first week of January – very close to Christmas and New Year’s. His parents were very careful to hold a separate celebration for his birthday, and it does not seem to me that he was affected all that much. He was jealous of other kids who got their birthdays during the school year, but kids who are born in the summer would have the same problem.

  3. I just had a december baby and the tax write off is amazing! She was born on 12-12 so we’ll always make sure that she has a special celebration apart from any holiday stuff.

  4. My birthday is December 23rd, and I never was bothered by it at all. It all depends on the kid and how you as a parent deal with birthdays I suppose. My parents made a point to give me a separate celebration, and still do now. I love it now because all my friends are back in town for the holidays so we can all get together. I also love barely ever having to work or go to school on my birthday.

  5. I have a friend whose birthday is near Christmas and he hates it. My husband and I planned to take a break during the month of March to try make sure that our baby didn’t have a late December birthday (but it ended up being moot as I was pregnant by the end of January).

    Best of luck!

  6. My birthday is December 28 and there are pros and cons:

    Cons: Most of my friends couldn’t come to my birthday parties when I was young (out of town visiting grandmas, etc.). That was a bummer. And joint Christmas-birthday presents are a the worst! Never give those!

    Pros: I never had to go to school on my birthday! It always took the edge off the post-Christmas sadness (did anyone else ever experience this?)–Christmas is over but now I get my BIRTHDAY! WHEEE! We also celebrated Hanukkah, though, so it was a like a celebration onslaught for a month. And now that I’m an adult and I live far away, it’s nice to be around my family on my birthday. My sister and I usually celebrate my birthday together because we’re both in town and don’t have to work.

    • My birthday is on Dec. 29, and my older sister’s is on Dec. 28 as well. I totally agree about the school thing – I always thought it was awesome that I never had to go to school on my birthday =D

      My mom is big on family traditions… we had a lot of traditions for Christmas, one being that our Christmas gifts were from Baby Jesus and not Santa, and that we got three gifts (because Baby Jesus got three from the wisemen). And every year on our birthday, we had an ice cream cake, sparkling cider, and one big gift. My parents were always careful to make sure that they spend the same on me as they did on my other siblings.

      As far as double gifts, that was never really an issue. My birthday was just far enough from Christmas that it was more like a “Shit, her birthday’s coming up too… gotta get a present for that!”, and people were actually more likely to remember to get me a gift because they were out Christmas shopping anyways.

  7. Great question! Our daughter’s birthday is smack in between Christmas and New Year’s, so we need suggestions as well.

    • My birthday is 12/29 and as many have said there are pros and cons. As a kid it was hard to not have school in session. lots of my friends were not around. I don”t remember any big parties as a kid, but I usually did something fun for the day with a few friends like go skiing or shopping with x-mas money. As an adult it is great. I now have time off and can travel for my birthday/ new years or have close friends in town. My friend’s daughter has the same b day and she often has fun sleep overs and parties in early January once school starts up.

  8. My birthday is the third of January and I was always upset because either a) we were out of school for my birthday, which meant no party! or b) we started back to school ON my birthday, and that was never fun. What a great way to celebrate, back to school for the first time in 2 weeks!

    • Another Jan 3rd baby and I agree. It’s a little tougher, but you know what? Life is tough sometimes.

      Make sure that there is no Christmas themed stuff and it’s okay.

      • I am a Jan 3rd baby too but my entire family has birthdays near other holidays… My sister is Feb 13, Mom is in May near Mothers day almost always, Dad is Dec 3 right after Thanksgiving.(we would always put the Christmas tree up on Dad’s Birthday and take it down on mine… depressing but fun sometimes too) My kids ended up being Dec 29th (7 weeks early and he still can’t wait for much) and Jan 23 (he was due Superbowl Sunday but the Dr would not schedule the c-sec for that day – Tragedy for him or whatever) Anyway, we have all come up with crazy ways to make our birthdays more fun. Initially for me, it was the realization that if I didn’t get what I wanted for Christmas, chances are I would get it for my birthday and if not – family would give me $$ and as you know, the sales after Christmas are AWESOME… My boys love this fact now. We all go power shopping after Christmas, together getting 2-3 times more bang for our buck. (Great bonding time too considering they are teenagers now) Then we all get to go to the restaurant of our choice on our actual birthday for a special birthday dinner. Because I divorced their father over 5 years ago, this is usually the only time we are all together with aunts, uncles and grandparents too, it makes the dinners all that much more fun. So much fun, I married my new husband on December 21st this past year… We party from Thanksgiving to Valentines day then start all over again in May thru… well I guess we just don’t stop. My Grandmother will be 98 this August so birthdays are a extra special as a milestone for the generations, everyone gets special treatment no matter when their big day is!

    • Ha, my birthday is September 1st, so I had my birthday on the first day of school a few times. I was a nerd and loved it, though. πŸ˜€

  9. I was born on December 14th and as a kid, it really didn’t bother me. My parents made a point to not decorate for xmas before the 14th and I always had a separate bday from xmas.

    I think it’s when I grew up that things became more complicated. I wouldn’t see my family as much, so I often end up having a single xmas-bday gift and celebration. I also won’t celebrate because I’m either in my finals or totally burned out by the final before xmas sprint at work. I guess I’m partly to blame because I decided to put more effort into having crazy xmas parties instead of focusing on my birthday!

    Here are my advices to make it work:
    -Do not allow 2-in-1 gifts (xmas and birthday together).
    -Have a distinct party for the birthday. Yes, even if it’s the same people that you saw 2 days ago that would attend.
    -Have a distinct theme-decoration-food etc. It’s a birthday, it shouldn’t feel like ”another” holiday party. (Yes, avoiding xmas wrapping paper is a must!)
    -Do not give cards/gifts in advance or a bit later. If you can’t be there on the birthday, avoid using the holiday gathering to give your gift. Give the gift to the parents who will make sure the kid receive it on time, or arrange with mail service to make the delivery on the birthday.
    -Think about providing a gift list that your child will enjoy all year long and keep the ”winter” themed gifts for xmas. I’m 25, and I’m asking for sunglasses next year from my parents. It’s weird asking for this kind of item in winter, but I can’t afford them so I need to receive them as a gift! If your child only receives winter toys, he’ll get pretty bored in summer…

    Conclusion: It’s totally up to you to make it work πŸ™‚

  10. My birthday is December 28 and I love, love, love having my birthday right around the holidays. I adore Christmas and feel so honored that I get to share my birthday during that magical season.

    My parents always did a great job of getting me separate gifts for Christmas and my birthday so that was never an issue. I did have some friends that would get me one gift but it never bothered me at all.

    I also have a friend that was born on Christmas day and she loves her birth date too!

  11. Both my dad and uncle have birthdays within a weeknof Xmas, and I just gave birth the first week of january, but was due right before Xmas.
    Everyone said our baby would resent us for having him so close to Xmas, my uncle said that if we decided to give baby a summer birthday he would definitely buy a present!
    Cos the thing he hated most ws people who said as your birthday Is so close to Xmas we’ll get you one big present, he said he always felt cheated by that, I suppose you could make sure people know that’s not acceptable.

  12. My birthday is December 31st. And, it was less than ideal growing up. My mother tried to do birthday parties – but often they didn’t work out. Many of my friends couldn’t attend because of family holiday parties. Or, some have even forgotten because of the holiday rush. Additionally, a lot of friends/family used to group gifts. “This is your Christmas AND birthday.” So, when it came to my birthday I had very few items to open. Which, doesn’t matter now – but as a kid it was kinda sad. Especially when you’d see other kids birthday parties throughout the year. As I’ve gotten older there have been added burdens. In the last 10 years, I have been thrown up on on my birthday 4 times. And since I don’t drink, I’ve been the DD/caretaker for drunk friends. This year I boycotted, and my husband, son and I ordered in and watched movies.

    I would gladly give up my birthday for another non-holiday date.

    • My birthday is dec. 31st as well and I had a very similar experience growing up. It was a drag as a kid, no birthday parties, one or two presents (always in xmas paper) and just generally forgotten with the hectic holidays.
      Once I turned 21, it became more fun but honestly I’d love any non holiday birthday, so people would remember it (how hard is it to remember the last day of the year!?)
      My fiance always wants to go out for my bday, but I’d really rather just stay in and relax.

    • I have a December 31st b-day too! Honestly I didn’t care about the presents, but I was beyond bummed every year when NONE of my closest friends could make it to a birthday party because they were out of town and at the mercy of their parents holiday plans. My parents saw this and always made the extra effort to make my birthday special…because there was always no school, there were possibilities. The family often went to Disneyland, just for me, it was nice. πŸ™‚
      I often dreamed that I did have a birthday that fell on a school day though, I had this fantasy where I would take in cupcakes for all my classmates, my friends would get the prettiest ones and we could all laugh and enjoy them together…a mini break from school…even while we were sitting at our desks…& have everyone wish me a happy birthday…& i’d smile back & say thank you. ^.^ No one should ever give a combined present for two occasions! It’s just not right!…If you were that hard up for money, I would have preferred you wrap one sock in red&green paper and another in wrapping of my favorite colors! At least it would have made me laugh…not frown.
      I apologize for whining; but as I am 20 now I can look forward to nothing but happy birthdays. ^u^
      *Tip: For fellow “December 31st”ians- If you really love to party! Definitely have your party on your birthday-just rent out a place with a large available occupancy & get the word out. πŸ˜€

      If you don’t drink and/or not into that idea!
      Don’t be afraid of having your soiree in January-all of your most intimate acquaintances will make it & you should have an enchanting party. πŸ˜€
      – <3 Ayami

  13. My birthday is the 18th of December (1 week before Xmas) and it’s never bothered me. You just need to make sure your family udnerstands the seperation of the 2. My family ALWAYS made sure I got both Xmas and Birthday gifts. When I was about 13 they started wanting to give me combo gifts but would ALWAYS ask if I minded (which I didn’t because at that age I understood quality over quantity and it was always worth combining).

  14. I just had my son on Christmas Eve. We’ve thought a lot about this.

    For starters, it’s good when you have pretty supportive families– our families already shower Eliot with gifts, so we don’t expect problems.

    I’ve already started making it clear that if you want to skimp and get one Birthday/Christmas present, you’ll be invited to not give one at all. He won’t miss out– we’ll make sure.

    I also thought about having his birthday parties earlier in the month or even having an “unbirthday” during the summer.

    Ultimately, he shares a birthday (almost) with Jesus. And although I’m not a practicing Christian, Jesus was a pretty cool guy, and someone who I don’t mind my kid sharing a birthday with.

  15. agree with the other commenters here. Make the day special, not a combo with the other holiday. Mine is 1 month after Christmas, and the bummer about that is that people are usually to broke to party.

    • This. My birthday is a few days after New Years and my friends can never do anything with me because they are broke after the holidays.

  16. My parents deliberately planned all three of us near Christmas, to maximise my mom’s maternity leave – I’m 23rd Dec, middle sister is 16th Dec and baby sister is 11th January.

    Sure, parties were difficult when we were kids, cause people were sometimes too busy/broke/tired to attend. And people who wrapped my present in Christmas paper received stern looks. But I quite like having our birthdays near Christmas. We all come home for Christmas, which means we’re all together for our birthdays too. It feels special to have my birthday so near Christmas. My family always made sure to do something distinct for my birthday, so I never felt like I missed out.

    Like you said, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not much of a worry. I always felt worse for August kids – they were the youngest in the class, and everyone was away on vacation for their birthday.

  17. My birthday is December 5th, which has had it’s ups and downs. It was fine as a kid, cause my family never did any decorating for Christmas before then, and it seemed like a pretty separate entity from Christmas all together. The only time it really sucked was in university, cause that was always right around exams, so no one could really celebrate with me.

    My sister is a January 2nd baby though, and she resents it. People are always way too partied out from all the holidays to even do anything with her by then. My own dad has forgotten to call her twice on her bday. She wishes she could switch the day up, for sure.

    One more note about combined xmas/bday gifts… They suck as a kid, but as an adult I’m cool with them, if they happen to be one epic gift rather than two little things.

  18. My fiance and his older sister share a birthday of Dec. 11. Their parents’ birthdays are late November and early December so growing up the whole family celebrated all birthdays and Christmas within a 32 day span. The only “side effect” I’ve noticed in my fiance is that he doesn’t make a big deal about his bday, because it was never his alone – always shared with his sister (I, on the other hand, pretend like my birthday’s a national holiday, and cannot resist celebrating other people’s birthdays as such also). The family made up for the hectic December by always having a small cake and ice cream party in June.

    • National holiday… hehe! My birthday is in March, and I’ve always felt like the whole month is a national holiday! Maybe I’m just a bit self-centered though : )

      My husband’s birthday is Jan 30th, and I know he always was short changed on the whole gift thing. But I think that just tends to happen when you grow up poor. If you have the money to celebrate two major holidays in a short time, then great, otherwise….

  19. I’m also a boxing day baby! And there are good and not so good points to having a holiday birthday:
    my fam is always around, and it’s like a bonus celebration day for everyone! Our family Christmas parties used to end with a birthday cake for my cousin (actually born the 25th), myself, and Jesus. (My grandma wanted to make sure she didn’t leave anyone out!) And I’ve also never had to work on my b-day, which is nice.
    My mom always worked hard to make sure that as a little one, my day was separate and special from Christmas. There are also some classic family photos that come with being born this time of year, like my mom under the tree with a bow on her belly, and newborn me neatly tucked into a Christmas stocking…
    The down side– getting “joint” gifts, like the “it’s for Christmas and your birthday!” kind. It’s totally no big deal now (i’m usually flattered that someone even thought to get a gift!), but as a kiddo it stung a little to open identical packages with my sis and know that mine had to do double duty, while she got something else for her October birthday. And I definitely agree about not wrapping birthday presents in Christmas-themed paper…as a kid, it made me feel like I was an afterthought.
    Another down side is that, while family was plentiful, my friends were usually out of town visiting their families, and thus b-day parties with my elementary school friends were difficult. It’s also kind of rough as a little kid to have all of your big celebrations all in one week. It makes waiting for Christmas to come again seem super long. We did half-birthday parties a couple of times, and those were a lot of fun!
    As a side note here, my husband’s birthday is the 4th of July, and he grew up thinking that the fireworks were for him, but as an adult, he kind of resents that there are always pre-determined plans every year on his b-day.

    So, basically, every time of year has its own pros and cons to having a holiday birthday, not just December. It just depends on how you celebrate it and your future baby!

    • I was actually going to make the half birthday suggestion. I don’t actually know when my cousins’ real birthdays are, but I know they celebrated their half birthdays every year so that they could celebrate at the beach with family. There’s no reason you couldn’t use this same tactic in reverse to give your holiday child a chance to celebrate with friends who are out of town on their real birthday.

  20. My birthday is the first week of January and it has never bothered me!

    I just gave birth to twins two days after Christmas. When I was pregnant, people said to me repeatedly that I should have thought about that when I conceived. Which I think is utter silliness. ; )

  21. This is a really good question. As you can see, my name is Holiday – I was born on 12/18 (exactly 1 week before Xmas). Two of my three middle names are also holiday themed. The only downside I ever felt was that most outside birthday party activities (swimming, pinata’s, epic bike rides, etc) that I saw my summertime siblings & friends enjoying, were usually not feasible for my chilly birthday. Oh, and sometimes in college I would have finals on my birthday – no big deal.
    I wouldn’t change it. I happen to LOVE Xmas, so having my birthday at that time of year too just makes it even better. Also, my older sister has a birthday on 12/21, and her and I have always had a special bond because of this. This last year, I had a niece born 12/17, so our little December Bday Club is growing!

    I would say, with absolute seriousness, NEVER, EVER give a December baby a Bday gift wrapped in Xmas wrapping. My mom is the only one who can get away with this anymore (because in her head I am her little Xmas elf baby – so I forgive her), but everyone else in my family knows my thoughts on it. If you got a present in Xmas wrapping for your July bday, you would feel a little gipped. Same for December babies.

    My final word is – don’t stress over this. People have Bdays all across the year. I have a friend whose Bday is 12/26 – but it’s also her moms Bday, so they get to share that. I have another friend that gets 10/31, and another that gets 2/14….you get what you get. If you’re a birthday hating type of person you’re going to hate it know matter what, and if you’re not, you won’t. Don’t worry about controlling that. Just have your beautiful baby, and whenever he/she comes into the world? That’s exactly when he/she is supposed to, and no other time will do.

  22. I have thought about this topic as well. My husband and I are trying for out second. I brought up what if we have a Christmas baby? He said he had a friend that was born around Christmas and his family just threw him a party on his half birthday. Its a great idea. Then the child would a have a nice summer birthday.

  23. My brother’s birthday is June 15, right in the middle of summer break from school when our cousins would always visit. My birthday is August 21, always the first week of school. I always thought I had it at least as bad as the December birthdays. πŸ™‚

  24. We just had a little one on 12/3. Granted it is a little further from the winter holidays than some of the other commenters but we’re used to celebrating a lot in December! We’ll have my daughter’s birthday, our anniversary and the Christmas.

    We my husband and I started trying, we didn’t projected when our little one would be born, we just let everything happen on its own.

    Good luck!

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