(Closed) POLL – Would you be offended by a cheap gift/no gift at all?

posted 4 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Would you be offended?

    I would be offended by no gift

    I would be offended by a cheap gift (i.e $5)

    I would be offended by both

    I would be offended by neither

  • Post # 16
    616 posts
    Busy bee

    View original reply
    Lakeside003 :  It’s never fair to assume someone else can afford a gift.  Finances can be complicated and people aren’t going to generally be open about their money troubles. I don’t get offended by “cheap” gifts or a lack there of. 

    I have two good friends at opposite ends of the spectrum financially and I don’t love my friend of lesser means any less for gifting me a second hand book vs my other friend’s $300 splurge. 

    Post # 17
    1277 posts
    Bumble bee

    Maybe. Depends on alot of factors. Did they spend $2000 flying from another country to get to my wedding? Things like that need to be considered.  If they were in your wedding party those can easily be between $1000 to $2000 commitments or more! Are they a student? Also the ederly are usually not working and on a fixed income. 

    I would 100% be offended by not receiving a card however. They are $1.00- $5.00 and are a simple courtesy if I invited you to the most important day of my life. 

    Post # 18
    5641 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: November 2009 - New York, NY

    I always gift from my heart, and my heart is never influenced by what I am gifted.

    Post # 19
    394 posts
    Helper bee

    It kind of depends? Like, I’m terrible at giving gifts even though I try so I have a lot of sympathy and understanding in that way. And while it’s a huge cliche, I do really feel like it’s the thought that counts. One of my friends writes me a letter for every gift giving occasion instead of giving me a gift and I love that so much more than any gift she could give. Or another who tries so hard to get me things I’ll like that even though she rarely hits the mark with her gifts, I still spend ages agonizing over what to get her, too, because I know she values this.

    So if you’re bad with gifts with everyone, then no, I’m not going to be offended. It’s no biggie. But it does mean that I’m not going to go all out on your gifts in the future because I already struggle with gifts and I’m going to take it as an indication that you’re not big on gifts, either. Because I do have friends that are amazing at gift giving and thus take it very seriously on both ends, so I just figure let us bad gift givers can jointly save our gifting energy for these cases and we can cool it with each other. That’s totally fine with me. Giving gifts doesn’t give me any great joy in and of itself, it’s seeing the other person enjoy the gifting process that does it for me. So if you don’t care about gifts and I don’t care about gifts then what’s the point of making a big deal out of it?

    On the other hand, if you take gifts very seriously and you give generously to everyone but me, then yeah I’m going to take that as there’s something lacking in our relationship and re-evaluate it as a whole to make sure I’m not putting in more to the relationship than is being reciprocated. For instance, I have a friend who thinks birthdays are the biggest deals and would tell me how offended she was that so-and-so didn’t wish her a happy birthday or get her a present. But then my birthday rolled around and she totally ignored it. I don’t care about birthdays at all, but if you tell me something’s meaningful to you in this way and then exclude me from it then what other way am I supposed to take that? Either you’re selfish or you don’t care about me and either way, that’s not something I need a lot of in my life.

    That’s just my thoughts. In the end, gifts aren’t the most important indicator of how strong a relationship is, but I do feel like they can be a sign at times.

    Post # 20
    693 posts
    Busy bee

    I think that no person REALLY knows anyone’s financial situation, and therefore has no right to judge.

    Appearances can be deceiving when you’re on the outside looking in.

    My wedding is two weeks away, and we specifically told our guests, no gifts whatsoever. We want people to not have to stress about such trivial things. 

    Also, don’t have a wedding if you can’t afford it. We only spent $3,000 total, knowing it’s what we could afford.

    Post # 21
    6300 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: September 2012

    I wouldn’t be offended by any gift. Honestly….I would rather someone get me NO gift than give me something that I didn’t register for simply because we only registered for things we either a) actually needed or b) needed replacing (like sheets and towels). Any gift outside of that was likely something that we didn’t need, want, or have room for. I’d rather someone not waste their money buying a gift we will likely donate or give away because we don’t need or want it.

    I personally cannot imagine *myself* ever attending a wedding/shower/party and not giving a gift. That being said I’m a firm believer that you just never know someone’s financial situation. While we’re blessed to be doing well now, there have been plenty of times over our many years together that DH & I have struggled financially….but to the outside you’d never know it.

    It’s rude to spend other people’s money. Saying that your Brother-In-Law & SIL do well or aren’t financially in trouble and you found their cheap gift strange, honestly it’s kind of rude. I highly doubt if they were struggling they’d be singing it from the rooftops.

    Post # 23
    637 posts
    Busy bee

    I absolutely would not care if someone gave me a cheap gift or no gift for my wedding regardless of their financial status. 

    Post # 24
    1668 posts
    Bumble bee

    Hell yes! I’d be offended! One exception- if it’s a cheap gift then it’d better be heart felt. It’s the thought that counts!! I’ve been too poor to afford a nice gift so I gave what I could and I included a very heart felt letter saying how much I love and appreciate them in my life. I’ve also given photo collages and personalized crafts that took days to create. It was obvious I cared.

    On the other hand, I’ve received a photo frame with the $4.99 price tag still attatched… Ok… And Why no photo inside?? All this carelessness shows they didn’t care and I was pissed!

    Post # 25
    1189 posts
    Bumble bee

    this is an interesting topic. I was one of the last in my group of grad school buddies as well as in my family to get married so I had attended many a bridal shower, wedding and baby shower before I ever got married. I brought gifts to everything. Of course, I spent less on these events when I had less, but I never showed up empty handed and  I think it’s rude to not even bring a card. 

    I wouldn’t say that I would end a friendship over no gift or a cheap gift… but I also wouldn’t be purchasing future gifts that were as generous as those I purchased previously. 


    Post # 26
    72 posts
    Worker bee

    Everyone on this board is so mature and sensible, I’ve seen it on all the threads, and then comes me crashing the party.

    It wouldn’t affect the gifts I’d give, because presents are my love language, which includes gifting people. I love doing so. Even when I had no money, I made sure I gave thoughtful gifts, even if they weren’t expensive. I had two best friends once who came to my birthday, who couldn’t afford gifts, but they put together a collage of all our friends, framed for me. I was so, so touched by that. And then this year a friend gave me a bag full of hand sanitizers she and her family had been collecting all year (an inside joke to do with always being given one when we get take-out, and I have no hands, haha), which was the most hilarious thing ever and I still laugh over. So. I wouldn’t be offended as such, to me it’s not about the price tag, but if it were out of character for the person, I’d find it strange. Weddings are not about getting gifts, of course, but gifts come with meaning, and if it were out of character for someone, I would wonder.

    Post # 27
    41 posts

    View original reply
    Lakeside003 :  The 5 love languages – I really like this perspective and that’s also how I would look at it. Some people just don’t see gift giving as important. For them it doesn’t represent their relationship with me, it’s just a box to tick. For me it’s different, so I always put thought into the gifts I give.

    I would be offended if they made it known that they didn’t value our friendship. Whether that can be communicated through a gift depends on the person.

    Post # 28
    457 posts
    Helper bee

    I wouldn’t be offended, in fact I would prefer to receive nothing rather than a gift (cheap or expensive) that I didn’t need and had to figure out how to dispose of it. But I would like to receive a card. For one, if you get nothing at all, you wonder if they did give something and it’s been lost. My sister/MOH and my bridesmaid both gave nothing, not even a card. Which I thought was kind of rude. And before you say they spent so much on the day, they spent literally nothing – I paid for all clothes, hair and make up and a cab for them to get there and back. And they didn’t do a bridal shower, bacherlorette or any pre or post wedding celebration of any kind. 

    Post # 29
    115 posts
    Blushing bee

    View original reply
    Lakeside003 :  I would see them as cheapskates and do the same. Petty people deserve pettiness.

    Also, I come from a culture where it’s rude to show up at someone else’s house empty-handed.

    Post # 30
    326 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: April 2017

    View original reply
    Lakeside003 :  well, no one is obliged to provide a gift for a wedding. We told all of our guests that we didn’t want or need anything when they asked about gifts and didn’t receive gifts from a number of our guests. Some people had travelled to attend our wedding & were staying in hotels etc so I was not offended at all. One of DH’s friends attended and gifted us about £2.62 worth of Sri lankan currency, in a very funny card – this was some kind of in joke between them and made me laugh. I know they can’t afford to give an expensive gift. I would not think twice about giving gifts to people, even if they hadn’t given a gift at our wedding.

    I do think it is good ettiqute to give a card though, if you can’t afford/haven’t purchased a gift.

    The topic ‘POLL – Would you be offended by a cheap gift/no gift at all?’ is closed to new replies.

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