This is a case of “reading the room”! We’ve all been there - you receive a gift from your other half which he or she is enthusiastic to reveal. You open the gift and a wave of disappointment appears - sh*t! It’s not what you were expecting. How do you manage this situation?
The truth is there is no blanket right or wrong answer. This delicate situation has to be handled on a case-by-case basis! So what do you do?
Confess...if your face says it all
If you’re one of those people where you can’t hide how you feel, the disappointment may be obvious. If this is the case, honesty may be the best policy. Assess the situation and decide if it’s the right time to be honest about how you feel.
If you do decide to admit disappointment, focus on the positives of the gift - “ it’s lovely because it does this” or “I like that it does that”, then add the but - “but I am not sure I’ll use it” or “it’s not quite my style” follow by another but, “but I really appreciate the gesture….”
Not everyone can handle feedback and perceived criticism (and that’s ok). Sometimes it’s best (and easier), to accept the gift with a smile and either exchange the item or re-gift at a later date. And then if you are wondering how to stop this situation occurring again in the near future, do this…
Teach ‘ em
If your other half is notoriously uninspiring when it comes to buying gifts, it’s time to train them and develop habits which help in the gifting department. Don’t be afraid to tell them what you want! Honestly, it’s the best way to avoid future disappointment.
Try gift wishlists! They are a great way of adding items you’d love to have and they can be used by your partner, family and friends when it comes to birthdays and Christmas.
Babe, don’t wait until after the event! Your birthday is the same time every year, so kickstart those birthday gift conversations. Subtly set some expectations “I’m not a fan of….” or “If you are not sure what to get, I like…”
Every little hint helps!