to dread opening a present from DH?(253 Posts)
For various reasons I usually only get one present at Christmas - small family, friends don't do presents, my parents normally get us a joint present, something practical. DH always gets me a present and it is usually something really bad - not bad in itself, but something that I have either said I don't want or nothing personal. (One year he got the same bottle of perfume for his aunt, me and a colleague). Basically his presents make me feel unloved and I have said I would rather not get anything than go through the embarassment of trying to pretend I like it - last year I felt completely humiliated as I burst into tears. I know this is a first world problem - and if it was anyone else I would just suck it up but I find it so upsetting that the person who I feel should know me (if not best than at least a bit) gets things so wrong.
I just email my husband with a link to what I want. He's crap at buying presents. Instead of making it an emotional issue, why not just do that?
OH and I actually ask each other what we would like for Christmas. Why can't you both do the same?
I did email him a link to a book I wanted but he decided to go with the generic perfume instead. Last year I told him specifically something I didn't want (which he got) and he didn't go with any of the suggestions!
Then I'd tell him NO presents. If he still gives you one, tell him thanks but no thanks.
Go on Amazon or Debenhams draw up a wish list and e mail it to him, some people are clueless with presents.
It really doesn't matter.
If Christmas is not a religious thing in your house, it doesn't matter what he buys. It doesn't matter what you buy!
Just treat it as a 'wtf!?' day'.
Have you asked him straight out 'Why did you get the exact thing I told you I didn't want?' I think he should be able to explain that.
I would then also say that if he can't buy you something you've said you like this year, then (as Expat) said, hand it straight back to him. Are there usually other people there when you open your presents?
In our house we tend to tell each other if it's something specific and more in money value.
That way we know we will be getting what we would both like and any extras like little things we tend to get practical things and jokey pressies
My mum is like your dh and so about two years ago after another bag full of things il never use wear or want I just said to her that I felt bad that she's spent money on things that will never get used and i would much rather to save her purse and my sanity have some cash to choose what I would like. I then give the items to her and she wraps them.
If my dh after thirteen years was rubbish at present buying I think I would tell him not to bother just give me cash aswell.
Is that not an option?
My DH is also a bit rubbish at presents most of the time and is not good at taking hints or even requests. (I've been asking for the same pair of earings since valentine's day and had my birthday and our anniversary in between then and now) to be fair last christmas he took me to a jewelers and asked me to pick something, this year I phoned him when I saw something I wanted and asked if he wanted to give it to me for Christmas, then bought it for him to wrap. I've given up on expecting him to pick something I'll love after 10 years of dodgy purfume, scented candles, or nothing at all because he forgot!
I get choosing your own thing if presents are important symbolically but wrapping it up when you know what it is becauase you bought it seems odd. Do you have to feign surprise when you open it?
I don't think adults should put too much stock in presents, but there's a difference between not getting what you want and someone apparently going out of their way not to get it for you. It's the thought that counts, as they say. Conversely the lack of thought can sting.
XH specialised in presents he must have known I didn't want - a bottle of Southern Comfort one birthday, which he loves and I never touch; a particularly unappealing statuette, of a type I had often remarked on as hideous, for an anniversary. If I wanted anything specific I had to buy it for myself, often in the teeth of several arguments about why I shouldn't. Note the "X".
DH used to be rubbish at presents and actually he found it really stressful and finds surprising others, and being surprised difficult.
He has got much better, as we decided a few years ago that we would go and see a classical concert together in the New Year as we love this, and he would buy this as my Christmas present as the tickets are quite expensive. If he buys tickets at certain agreed venues/orchestras then I'm sure to like it! For him, I ask him to choose something practical/techy as this is his thing and that's what I buy. No surprises, no upsets. We save surprises for the children.
Could you ask him for an 'experience' - tickets or something?
ask him why he does it. Tell him how it makes you feel. If you already have, then tell him that since he already knows how you feel, he clearly doesn't give a shit.
Stop buying him anything.
If he really can't be arsed then there's something wrong with him.
If it matters to you then it matters. It does not matter whether anyone else would be bothered if it was them. It's not them. It's you. and you see it as symbolic of his feelings about you. That matters. It matters because it upsets you.
After 13 years and getting some lovely surprises and some bloody awful ones, he now gets a list and throughout November and December he gets told in no uncertain terms, DO NOT GO OFF LIST. I hate surprises and I make sure he knows it.
We usually agree a budget with which we buy one main gift, then bulk it up with fun/junk/chocolate.
At least then I get a main gift which I actually want, then he often buys other things to go with - some great, some shite but the thing I asked for outweighs the panic buy tat.
Some people just need to be told straight.
Write him a santa list of 10 items and get him to pick one. Ask him to do same
DH is crap at presents (and tbf I struggle with his presents too) so we have what a lot of posters have proposed - a Christmas list, just like the dcs.
However, the fact he is basically refusing to take something form that lost is showing a total lack of respect IMO. And I think you need to tell him too.
A book isn't hard to find. One click on Amazon is enough.
I would have been gutted about the fact he had got the sam present for you than for a colleague. I would have taken that as a sign that he cares as much about said colleague than about you.
Now, did you tell him all that and did you explain how his behaviour is making you feel/is unacceptable? What dis he say about it? And why does he think its ok to do it again?
I would put that within the context of your relationship too. Is he always that disrespectful about your wishes, does he show he cares about you, does he make efforts for you? M
Just wondering if this is a symptom of a wider issue.
Can you both go shopping for each other's presents together? This coming weekend, go out for a nice lunch, you get to go to two shops and pick something, he gets the same, you both wrap each other's gift and present it on Christmas Day. No surprise, but no tears either (hopefully).
It doesn't sound like it's a case of him being rubbish at buying presents- you say you've told him what you DON'T want and he's bought it anyway, and you've also told him how you feel when he buys you the same as his aunt and colleague - yet he did it anyway. Why is he behaving like this? Is there an underlying reason you need to get to the bottom of to understand why he wants to do this to you...?
How did he react when you burst into tears? Did he improve things at all with your birthday?
That would piss me off. I don't really care about getting presents but to get you a generic perfume that he gave two other people, or something you specifically said you don't want is almost going out of his way to be crap. If he's being that lazy why not just get a voucher for a shop you like.
I agree with those saying you should talk to him about it.
It's very easy to say smugly (it is a bit smug) that adults shouldn't care about presents. But essentially this is about feeling unloved. If she didn't feel unloved, I doubt she'd care. And I would feel equally flat if I'd taken trouble over my partner and they'd not only got me something I didn't want, but also ignored my suggestions and what I said I didn't want!
It is plain rude, IMO. Sure, adults don't have to buy each other presents, just as there is no written rule adults have to smile or hug or make each other cups of tea, or any of the other little things normal people do manage to do. But it's all a bit cheerless, isn't it?
When you email the link to the book, or whatever, Is the link to where he would buy it on line? All he has to do is click on the link, add to cart and check out.
Join the discussion
Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.Register now
Already registered with Mumsnet? Log in to leave your comment or alternatively, sign in with Facebook or Google.
Please login first.