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What is 'A Shit Present?'

(248 Posts)
HostofDaffodils Mon 11-Dec-17 08:07:16

This is prompted by other threads:-

a) one where somebody was - for reasons she explained extremely well - annoyed by the 'shit present' of £100 in book tokens

b) threads in which people have explained that items made by the giver are 'shit' and - if edible - will be binned as likely sources of contamination.

Obviously we're not yet at the point where many posters are complaining about the shit presents they are due to receive - and are busily taking them to the charity shops and flogging them on ebay.

It's a bit too late for me anyway as I have done my present giving.

But even though it's too late for this year, as it may help me in a year's time, please tell me
a) what constitutes a shit present
b) why.

Many thanks


betrayedandwobbly Mon 11-Dec-17 08:14:21

I think the general epdefinition is something that is so vastly unsuitable for the intended recipient that even the thought that this person cares enough to give you something pales in comparison.

So to me it is very rare.

But your two examples: food gifts that cannot be safely consumed, and gifts from close relatives who have been specifically (and at their request) a range of ideas if what you would actually like and then get you something that they ought to know you dislike, bits fall into that category. Though the first is less shit as it might raise a giggle.

My shit present was when STBX gave me something I had specifically told him not to get me, because the choosing of it was important to me. I put chin up and told myself to be grateful at the time (expensive item) but with the benefit of hindsight it really did show that he had a crap attitude towards me.

ThursdayLastWeek Mon 11-Dec-17 08:18:54

A shit present is something given exclusively to ungrateful people!

Because they are too rude to suck it up, smile and say thank you.

No one ever means to give a shit present.

ijustwannadance Mon 11-Dec-17 08:21:23

Yeh, it's about being given something where the giver has given no thought at all to your tastes/likes.

One person would love the book tokens, whilst to another they are a pointless waste.

HuskyMcClusky Mon 11-Dec-17 08:22:32

a) one where somebody was - for reasons she explained extremely well - annoyed by the 'shit present' of £100 in book tokens

I know it’s not the point of the thread, but any chance you could link to this? Cos I’m confused (baffled).

treaclesoda Mon 11-Dec-17 08:24:48

The only shit presents are things that are given when the giver knows full well that the receiver won't like it. Eg one year SIL wanted to buy DH vouchers for a shop, and asked me where he buys his clothes. I suggested a few shops and said 'but don't bother with Next or River Island, he has never shopped there, he really doesn't like their clothes'. Then she presented him with a £50 voucher for Next because it's her favourite shop.

That's a shit gift because she deliberately gave him something knowing that he wouldn't like it.

If someone takes the time to choose something for you, thinking that you'll like it, but they get it wrong, that's not such a shit gift because it was a genuine mistake.

IHateYourCarpet Mon 11-Dec-17 08:26:11

A shit present is whatever passive aggressive crap my MIL gives me.

Last year she gave me some bunting from a charity shop. Which is fine in itself. But it was actually from a box of things I had given her to take to the charity shop on my behalf when she offered to take it on her way home ...

Elllicam Mon 11-Dec-17 08:26:18

Sometimes people mean to give shit presents as a passive aggressive move. I had an ex who would specifically get me things I didn’t like and then sit with a smirk while I opened them. Think red wine instead of while, dark chocolate instead of milk, thriller books instead of any other kids of books. I would then be expected to gush over them and consume/read them in front of him.

treaclesoda Mon 11-Dec-17 08:26:23

No one ever means to give a shit present.

Oh, they definitely do. It's rare, but it happens.

Elllicam Mon 11-Dec-17 08:27:40

grin cross post with all the other passive aggressive gift recipients.

Floellabumbags Mon 11-Dec-17 08:29:11

A mobile phone. I do not want a mobile phone for Christmas- it's like being given an iron or something from ikea. In fairness I smashed my old one and it neded to be replaced but I am sulking about it. And the phone case that DH bought for it is fucking rank.

Floellabumbags Mon 11-Dec-17 08:30:12

Oh and the broken mobile phone was a Christmas present two years ago. I didn't want that one either.

Eolian Mon 11-Dec-17 08:30:17

What betrayedandwobbly said. Any present that shows a blatant and deliberate disregard for what the giver knows the recipient likes and dislikes. Or a gift which shows a massive and deliberate disparity in worth when there is an established level of gifts in that relationship (e.g. sisters who always spend about £50 on each other but this year one of them gets a bag of maltesers). Any present which is given to make a snide or passive aggressive point (diet book, deodorant, iron!).

I think most cases of people saying their present is shit are caused by beung spoilt and entitled.

LoniceraJaponica Mon 11-Dec-17 08:30:55

I think the issue here is that often the giver doesn't really know the recipient well enough to know exactly what they would appreciate.

Chocolate is a good example. Do you buy plain or milk? Do you buy Cadbury's or Hotel Chocolat? You really need to know the recipient's personal preferences. Both of my nieces really like Cadbury's, so that is what they get (among other things). The only thing is one of them always buys Cadbury's for us and we don't like it. But it is the thought that counts so we just smile and say thank you (then I take it to work to share among my colleagues)

I agree with PP that ignoring suggestions is just silly and pointless.

betrayedandwobbly Mon 11-Dec-17 08:32:30


This is the thread:

The problem is not what the item is - it's that he chose something that OP has no use for, and ignored all the things she said she would like.

I think that when a spouse gets it badly wrong, in a way that cannot be made a joke of, then something is up (more than just a duff pressie)

IWannaSeeHowItEnds Mon 11-Dec-17 08:32:35

Thursday sadly some people do mean to give shit presents. Some people don't want to buy them at all, so are resentful, but know they have to observe social niceties and so are passive aggressive in their gift giving.

I think that not considering the recipient is what constitutes a shit present - buying what you would like to receive rather than what they would like.

The book token thread was where the OP had given her dh a list (at his request) and he told her all her ideas were crap and has bought her tokens instead, that have yo be used in shops which are a 2 hour round trip from where she lives. OP doesn't even love reading, but her h has decided this is a more appropriate present thsn anything she actually wanted!

AnonEvent Mon 11-Dec-17 08:33:05

I try to be grateful for all presents, it's the thought that counts 'n' all.

But for me, I struggle to be please to receive tat. And by 'tat' I mean small items that clutter up the house: mini candles (not one of the brands I like), bookmarks, small ornaments, little games, novelty books etc.

elQuintoConyo Mon 11-Dec-17 08:34:56

The poster of the book tokens gave her husband a gift-idea list which he requested , promptly shit all over her list then bought the tokens which is what you'd buy someone you don't know very well. It is an eye-wateringly waste of £100. A £10 book token off a relative or secret santa is one thing, that's a whole other ball game.

Some people don't like the tjought of eating a homemade gift as the kitchen might not be sanitary, or the baker might be a well-known nose-picker, or a grubby child may have touched the hundreds and thousands, or they may have a dog which sheds fur everywhere.... They are all valid reasons. I'd eat homemade food, but do not judge those who wouldn't touch it.

I'd say a present that has been bought with no thought to the recipient is a waste. Gifts bought 'because you have to' (eg avoiding family fall-outs), are a waste. Office secret santas are a waste.

I buy gifts for children and ask their parents what they'd like/enjoy/need (jigsaw, doll, craft stuff, new rucksack etc). I sew things for adults (tree decs, tablecloths- this year for my dad in a fabric he chose, plus 10 matching serviettes- pencil cases for teacher friends), everything is used.

Match the gift to the person = everyone is happy.

I'll have my Nobel Peace Prize now, thanks grin

FaFoutis Mon 11-Dec-17 08:35:23

Money can be a shit present too.

reetgood Mon 11-Dec-17 08:36:00

@thursdaylastweek you’ve obviously been blessed with uncomplicated gifters in your life.

I believe you should always be polite about presents, I also believe that gifts are not an obligation. To me a shit gift is one that is more about the person giving, with no regard for the person receiving. My mil has these tendencies. She tends to buy lots of cheap things that aren’t anything my partner would want. He doesn’t like conspicuous gift giving and is not big on ‘things’. He actually finds it fairly distressing; after years of receiving gifts that he neither wants or needs he sometimes asks himself whether she knows him at all. His last birthday they met for breakfast, and she wanted him to open all his gifts in the cafe. He said he’d prefer to keep some and open them on his actual birthday. She was upset by this suggestion, and refuted that it wasn’t about her by stating that yes it was, she bought things. Which to me is pretty much the definition of bad gift giving: giving things to someone that they don’t want because you want to give them, and then demanding that they behave in a certain way without considering their preferences or how they feel.

molifly Mon 11-Dec-17 08:40:20

Nothing worse for me than been gifted a boots 3 for 2! It screams no thought i just wanted the offer.

Smelly are ok but for example why spend £20 on crap ted baker toiletries when you can go to Debentures and buy a nice clarins shower gel for the same price that looks more thoughtful.

ASqueakingInTheShrubbery Mon 11-Dec-17 08:40:54

One year my ex gave me a CD of a band he liked and I didn't, and equipment for his hobby which I didn't participate in. They were pretty shit presents.

Hand cream in a fragrance I don't like, from a relative I rarely see, doesn't qualify. She has tried to find something inoffensive that she probably thinks is nice, but has missed the mark. Kindly meant and gesture appreciated.

GrandDesespoir Mon 11-Dec-17 08:41:53

A set of assorted cheap toiletries that I don't use and couldn't take home because I was flying with hand luggage only.

woodhill Mon 11-Dec-17 08:54:24

I suppose the Ted B ones look like a bigger gift somehow, they probably spend less as one gift is "free",points for the buyer but I would prefer the Clarins any day

LynetteScavo Mon 11-Dec-17 08:59:54

Money can never be a shit present. Unless it's 20p from a millionaire sibling. That would be shit grin

The shittiest present I ever got was a cheap glass dolphin. It was horrid. The same person also gave me stick on not me. And the plant pot stand. It was a tall wooden thing. I don't do house plants. They all were shit presents because I didn't need/want them in my life.

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