I have suggested before, more than once, that men are bad at getting clues. This is certainly true for gift giving. I talk to men who really want to get a gift their wife will love, but they have no idea what to get. One fellow told me about the year he got something she really liked, and how he thought he had hit the lottery. He stuck to the theme and gave a similar gift on each gift-giving occasion from then on because it was the only time he had ever “gotten it right”. If a man wants to get a good gift but cannot, it suggests he needs more than clues.
I’ve also seen guys give up. They decide they have no chance of guessing right, so they stop putting any effort into it. Being told they are horrible at gift giving often plays a part in this. Some ideas to help him:
- Point out something, and say, “That would be a great gift for _____. S/He loves _____.”
- Even if you do all of the gift buying for the kids (and everyone else) discuss your choices.
- Make comments on things you see in stores or advertisements. Discuss why it would be nice to have one, or how it is close to what you would like, but it would be better if _____.
- Thank him for some past gift you liked, telling him why it was such a great gift.
I know gift giving is so second nature for some women they honestly cannot understand how anyone could mess it up. Some men feel the same way about understanding sports or computers.
~ Paul – I’m XY, and when my wife hugged a rice cooker in Costco one December, I got the hint.
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