Social Question

HGl3ee's avatar

When you say you don't want a gift; do you really mean it?

Asked by HGl3ee (3955points) October 20th, 2009

You know when a friend or family member asks what you would like for your birthday or Christmas, for example, and if you say nothing or I don’t want anything; do you really mean it?

I’m just curious. I had this conversation with my boyfriend the other day. His birthday is this coming Saturday and he said he didn’t want anything from me. I believe him though.

For me, I have never asked for gifts or wanted anything for the holidays. I find that receiving gifts makes me feel awlkward and like I owe them for it. Except for Christmas 1995, I was 7 years old and DAMN I wanted that Barbie Dreamboat! <3

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26 Answers

Facade's avatar

Yes. I’d rather be given money; no card.

Beta_Orionis's avatar

99% of the time, yes. Presents are usually more clutter. If people insist on gifting me something, I suggest cash or something ceative. Unfortunately, most people go the easier route. :(

I empathize with the awkward feeling of debt. I generally don’t have the money to purchase presents, so I wouldn’t mind not receiving anything to avoid guilt. Save money all around.

jlm11f's avatar

Yes. When I do say that, then I do mean it. For example, my mother is on vacation right now in another country and she asked me what I would like from there. I honestly can’t think of anything since I was there earlier this year so I told her she doesn’t need to bring me anything. She called me and told me she bought me something anyway. This made me happy because the gift sounds like something I would really like but not happy in a “aha, she caught on to the reverse psychology I was playing” way. More like “aww she saw something that made her think of me and she bought it for me” way.

I agree completely with @Beta_Orionis “Presents are usually more clutter.” Cash/gift cards are the way to go if you don’t know the gift recipient well. I understand the idea behind “it’s the thought that counts” but there’s still a waste of resources.

evegrimm's avatar

When I say I don’t want gifts, I usually mean I don’t want something frilly or useless. However, if someone was to gift me with something useful (Kitchenaid Stand Mixer comes to mind), that would definitely not go unappreciated.

My relatives don’t seem to get this. I don’t really want more bath items or hair scrunchies or crazy (acrylic) socks.

Cookies are another useful item. :P

If it’s something I specifically asked for, that’s different, though.

HGl3ee's avatar

Thanks for all the great responses so far! I had a funny-feeling it was going to be the case, but I had to know for sure ^_^ – LB

Beta_Orionis's avatar

@evegrimm People are so weird.

Person: “What do you want?”
Me: “Nothing!”
Person: “Okay! Here’s this useless or generic thing!”

and then when you suggest something

Me: “Hey! I thought of something I’d really love! Ice-cube trays!”
Everyone else: “Don’t be ridiculous”
Me: ”...”

True Story.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I’d never say such a thing unless I meant it.

AstroChuck's avatar

I’d never say that. I like gifts!

dalepetrie's avatar

Those of you who refuse gifts are welcome to PM me for my address where any and all gifts will be graciously accepted!

Seriously though, if I say it, it’s probably because there’s nothing I actually want or need.

frdelrosario's avatar

Yes, I mean it.

Which leads to this uncomfortable situation: When one says “no gifts” and means it, and then a gift is presented anyway, how annoyed can the unwilling recipient be?

Skippy's avatar

Yes. When we had our 25th anniversary party on the invitations it stated “If you wish to honor us with a gift, please make a donation to your favorite charity in our name”
You’d be surprised how many people still brought frivilous gifts.
We took them with the spirit they were given, but after 25 years of marriage we really didn’t need anything. We did, however, have many call us and ask for “our” favorite charity to send a donation to. Several charities benefited from our milestone.

For my birthday etc now, again, there really isn’t anthing I want or need, but Gift Cards and Cash are always acceptable if you insist on getting me something.

If I say No Gifts and you get me one anyway, thanx, but you’ve not honored my wishes.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

When I say I don’t want a gift, I mean don’t buy me something just because you think you have to give me something. I am not expecting a gift. However, if you have been paying attention to things that I’ve said, or see something that you know I would like, or you find something that is meaningful to you, then I shall be deeply touched and genuinely appreciative.

@evegrimm, Kitchen Aid stand mixer is an amazing gift. I love mine, and have had it for years. Now that I think about it, it was one of the last things my dad bought me before he became ill.

filmfann's avatar

Yes, I really mean it.
I don’t like gifts, generally. I see them as little examples of how people see me.
Really? You think I would like this?

J0E's avatar

I never have, and never will say that. If someone wants to give me a gift who am I to stop them?

tedibear's avatar

If I say it, I mean it. I’m at a point where I don’t need much of anything but love, respect, consideration, etc. One more tschatcke to put somewhere, I don’t need. Unless it was picked out by a small child who thought it was perfect for me. Then it gets a place of honor.

Judi's avatar

If I really don’t want a gift, I might suggest a charity to give to in lieu of a gift.

janbb's avatar

If I say it, I mean it but I rarely say it.

drClaw's avatar

Yes, I hate getting presents for an arbitrary day like my birthday. I would much rather someone see something that makes them think of me and just give me a present out of the blue. At least that is how my wife and do presents most of the time.

tinyfaery's avatar

Presents please.

mabl8tr's avatar

and if anyone here does ’‘REALLY MEAN IT!’’
...i’ll have yours!! ((o:

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

Usually no but I’m uncomfortable to say what ‘things’ I’d like to anyone other than a committed SO or one of my parents or best friends. But just in case the eyes of the universe are interested (they’ve been paying attention lately), here is a list of stuff I’d love for holiday or any old time:

Glock 23
Sig Sauer P226— 9mm
Tooth whitening
Trip to Disneyland
Monthly acupuncture
Happpy Healthy friends

NaturalMineralWater's avatar

Hell no. Who doesn’t like gifts? Money is a gift too.

JLeslie's avatar

It depends. Mostly I say it when I don’t want people to feel obligated to get me a gift, but it does not mean I would not appreciate one. Don’t misunderstand, I am perfectly fine if I don’t get a gift, I am not saying no when I mean yes.

I really don’t want people to bring something small just because they are coming to a party I am throwing. I don’t want flowers or wine or any of those things you pick up at the last minute because you think you can’t come empty handed, unless it is something you want to have there to drink yourself. I appreciate the thought, but really don’t want the stuff.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

to me it means I don’t want them to waste their money on something I won’t like
so if they insist i give ‘em a list of stuff i need
and it’s usually stuff for my kids

saraaaaaa's avatar

I don’t like to expect things from people, so I say it to be polite and to hope that if they then do get something it’s not because they feel like they have to.

wundayatta's avatar

I tell them I don’t want gifts because, like most of you, I don’t want any more crap.

Of course, the things I really want are much too expensive to be given as gifts.

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