The holiday season brings to light problems that you don’t typically face, like how rude your great aunt Mabel is. However, since you only see her during the holidays, you can tolerate her behavior. Yet, that’s not the case for some holiday-related issues. For instance, you may have spouse who gives you expensive gifts that you hate. How do you handle this sticky situation?
Why He May Buy Something You Don’t Like
Last year, Deb, who only wears small, delicate jewelry, opened a present from her husband, Damien. Inside, she found a large, gold necklace with heavy pieces of geometric shapes hanging from the chain. It was bold and loud. When she put it on, the necklace felt heavy on her neck and chest. She hated the piece, but she didn’t know how to tell Damien, who was smiling happily.
If you have a spouse who gives you gifts you hate, you may feel Deb’s pain. However, before you talk to your spouse, first try to discover why he gives you the gifts he does.
He Wants to Surprise You
For some people, a gift isn’t special unless it’s a surprise. You could give obvious hints, even pointing out the specific items you want or sending your spouse web links to the exact items, but he never buys them for you. This could be because he wants to surprise you, and if you only give him a few choices, he feels he can’t surprise you.
He Likes the Item He Picked for You
Alternatively, your husband may be one of those people who buys gifts he likes. Damien, in the above example, may know that Deb likes small jewelry, but he likes the gold necklace with geometric shapes and thinks it would look good on her if only she’d try wearing something different.
How to Fix the Situation
The best way to handle a spouse who gives you gifts you hate is with honesty. Let him know why you didn’t like the present. If he is someone who likes to make a gift a surprise, perhaps give him a long gift suggestion list so he can choose from the list. Since he has so many choices, assure him you’ll be surprised by whatever he gets you.
If You Worry About Hurting His Feelings
If you worry that you’ll hurt his feelings if you tell him you don’t like his gifts, you can try a different tactic. Without mentioning his gifts, suggest that next year you do something different for the holidays. You could suggest that instead of exchanging gifts next year, you take a trip together. This could be as simple as a weekend away or a week-long getaway. You could start a new holiday travel routine, and you never need to tell him you don’t like his gifts.
If you find yourself in the sticky situation of having a spouse who gives you gifts you hate, you’ll need to decide whether to be honest or instead find a strategy to avoid receiving bad gifts. What you choose will depend on your and your spouse’s personalities and sensitivities.