I don’t mind the odd surprise gift, but 99 percent of the time, they’re a no-go zone for me. I don’t like receiving them and I don’t like giving them.
You might say I’m a bit of a party pooper. Perhaps you think I’m just too stuck up to appreciate the time and effort put into the gifts I receive. Or, as I like to see it, maybe I just want everyone to be super happy.
Very rarely have I been genuinely pleased by surprise presents. And let’s be honest, most of us have received some terrible gifts in the past. It’s wrapped nicely. You give it a shake, maybe a sniff and you start ripping it apart. But you wish you hadn’t. You wish you didn’t have to smile and say “OMG yaaaaaaay” and then slowly put it aside.
I’m here to tell you that you should always ask the person exactly what they want and if you’re still unsure, opt for the monetary options. It’s not lazy or thoughtless. In fact, I’d say it’s the most thoughtful gift there is.
Most of my relatives and closest friends have figured out that it’s best to give me a gift card or cash. Too many times have I tried to act as though I’m overwhelmed with joy at the presents and then failed to keep up the fakery. I’m certainly very appreciative that they’ve spent money on the gift. But in all honesty, it’s a gift that to me is a bit of a waste of their money.
There have been gifts where it should have been blindingly obvious that I would not like them; things I have never worn or used before. There have been questionable gifts and there have been the gifts that just plain disappointing. Sometimes (and I’m sure you’ve done this before as well) I’ve had to place a note reminding myself to use the gift when I know I will see the person who gave it to me. And let me tell you, that’s just exhausting.
I once had a boyfriend who bought me a lovely gift that I just did not understand. I tried really hard to like it. I really did. But when you don’t like something, you just don’t like it.
He bought me a pen. A really expensive pen. He obviously thought that as a journalism student interested in fun things like politics, I would appreciate a nice pen.
Except, I’m a strong supporter of the 10 pack of ballpoint pens you buy from the supermarket. They’re cheap and it’s ok if you lose them (because I lose them…a lot). The gift just became a bit of a burden because I was always careful about when and where I used it, making sure I didn’t lose it and making sure that I actually used it in front of him. (Post continues after gallery.)