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URGENT DO I ACCEPT A PRESENT?

(99 Posts)
Mitmoo Fri 05-Aug-11 16:50:57

Neighbour who has a thing about me for years though he's been told clearly nothing will happen and I will be his friend only. He has had a tough year this year. I noticed he hadn't been seen out, raised the alarm and he was found in his bath being inco-herent and couldn't get out. Clothed and no water in it. I raised the alarm with his family so they went in and found him. Done him other favours driving him places as I do for one other neighbour.

Anyway, he gave me a second hand television which was old a year or so ago but it died. He came in and saw I was watching a small television so I told him the old one had died.

He's knocked the door saying he's been to town and paid cash in full for a new flat screen for me and it will be here at 6.30.

I don't know whether I should accept the gift or not. If I don't I'll hurt him horribly and I don't know whether he could get his money back or not.

Feel like I am in a difficult position.

Mitmoo Fri 05-Aug-11 16:52:21

Dashing out now but back before 6 to see if there have been any helpful replies.

glitterkitten Fri 05-Aug-11 16:53:56

I wouldn't / couldn't accept. It's totally disproportionate

pinkthechaffinch Fri 05-Aug-11 16:54:59

Can you get in touch with his family again and ask for their advice?

I think that's what I'd do first.

Megatron Fri 05-Aug-11 16:55:14

Is there any way you could insist (or afford) to give him the money for it?

thisisyesterday Fri 05-Aug-11 16:56:20

I would have done/would do the whole "no, I really, really can't accept this, it's too much"
but if he was insistent then I would accept it

it's his money and he has every right to spend as much or as little as he sees fit on a gift for you.
a flat screen tv doesn't have to cost that much.....

GlitterySkulls Fri 05-Aug-11 16:56:24

could you maybe pay him back a set amount per week?

say you're trying to teach the kids the value of money or something so he doesn't get offended?

AgentZigzag Fri 05-Aug-11 16:57:19

I would feel uncomforable accepting such a large gift, especially when you say he has feelings for you but you don't for him.

It might leave you in a situation where you feel you owe him something, or he might use the fact you 'owe' him to subtly manipulate you.

But then that's maybe worst case scenario and it's just a lovely gift from a close friend...

ZillionChocolate Fri 05-Aug-11 17:00:05

I think it might be unkind to reject a gift in these circumstances. If you accept, perhaps be careful to emphasise that he's "a good friend" just to remind him of the boundaries.

AgentZigzag Fri 05-Aug-11 17:00:10

What pink says is another thing, it could look like you were accepting gifts from a person at a vulnerable time in their lives?

And how would that make you feel if you wanted to help him out again? Like you were just doing it for the cash benefits?

Not that I'm implying you are.

eurochick Fri 05-Aug-11 17:01:51

I have a bipolar friend who gives gifts to everyone in certain phases of his illness. they are completely disproportionate to the level of the friendship. I have found it very embarrassing in the past and phased it out by putting a low limit (£10) on any gifts. He's stopped now as his condition has moved on to a different phase.

I think this is a similar situation. It is a disproportionate gift to the help you have given him (lifts, etc). I would thank him for the gesture but refuse the gift.

LoveBeingAtHomeOnMyOwn Fri 05-Aug-11 17:01:56

Contacting his family is a good idea.

InstantAtom Fri 05-Aug-11 17:02:43

Agree with pinkthechaffinch. Contact his family - there may be some medical reason for the erratic behaviour which needs addressing.

rookiemater Fri 05-Aug-11 17:02:53

Nope don't accept it

elmofan Fri 05-Aug-11 17:06:13

I agree with pink And Agent - Don't accept this gift unless you are sure there's no strings attached to it .

izzywhizzyletsgetbusy Fri 05-Aug-11 17:07:25

Unless he is not competent to handle his own financial affairs, please don't insult your neighbour by getting in touch with his family as it's absolutely no business of theirs or anyone else how he spends his money.

Providing it comes without strings, accept his gift with thanks and should anyone enquire keep your own counsel as to who gave you your new tv.

This is exactly the sort of thing I do if someone has gone out of their way to help me. I prefer to give a gift (preferably something that is needed by the other party) that I've put some time into thinking about rather than pressing cash on them which, IMO, is a tad crass.

Chandon Fri 05-Aug-11 17:10:35

I would say something like:

"I really appreciate the thought and the effort, but I just could not accept such a big present. It would make me feel uncomfortable. But I do think it is very kind of you to offer. I hope you understand." and be firm, but friendly.

Because, if he fancies you, and you know it, it will come and bite you in the bum some day and you do not deserve that!

JanMorrow Fri 05-Aug-11 17:10:39

Awkward! You can get some fairly cheap flatscreens these days (in supermarkets and the like) so it may not be as "bad" as you think.. but yes it's still a little inappropriate. If I were you I'd emphasise that you really don't think you can accept it.. if he really insists (and it's not a massive, expensive looking yoke) then accept it with thanks and an emphasis on "friend" rather than anything else!

scarletfingernail Fri 05-Aug-11 17:15:04

It would be unreasonable to accept the gift IMO. You know this man has problems, you know this man is interested in you and you know you are not interested in him in the same way. To accept would make it appear you are either interested in him after all, or that you are taking advantage of his feelings.

If he is bringing it round himself do not allow him to give it to you.

If it is being delivered by courier do not accept delivery.

Tell your neighbour thanks but no thanks, in the nicest possible way, but be very firm and clear that you mean it.

Dozer Fri 05-Aug-11 17:19:24

Just say no, chandon's wording is good.

TheMagnificentBathykolpian Fri 05-Aug-11 17:20:01

Noooooooooooo. You simply cannot accept such a gift.

It would be taking advantage of his feelings for you, for one thing.

Plus there's the hold he may feel it gives him over you.

Then there's him getting nasty further down the line.

Very very very bad idea to even think about accepting it, imo.

G1nger Fri 05-Aug-11 17:24:01

No, and he can get his money back. Absolutely my answer is no.

MonsterBookOfTysons Fri 05-Aug-11 17:25:05

I think it is nice, if it is a gift for thanking you for helping him in his hour of need.
I think it is creepy if it is cos he fancies you.
Ask him what the reason is. Be friendly, he could just be really grateful and would be embarrassed if you think otherwise.

TheMagnificentBathykolpian Fri 05-Aug-11 17:27:19

Except he's hardly going to say well, I'm giving you this because I think it will obligate you to me and give me something over you and I'll expect you to be grateful to me...

Of course he'll say I'm just your friend, it's just to say thanks, I understand the score, don't worry about it...

If you're grateful to someone for being a nice neighbour - get them wine and chocs, not a brand new flat screen tv! grin

nickschick Fri 05-Aug-11 17:27:21

It could be that hes got a really good deal,it could be hes had a windfall - hes put thought into the gift and although it is a 'big' gift he wants to give it to you,to refuse would hurt his feelings.

Id have no problem with you accepting it so long as he is competent mentally and isnt skint himself I dont think you should involve his family hes an adult living independantly who you have helped in the past.

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