Author Topic: Rude reactions to gifts  (Read 29876 times)

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Vall

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #15 on: December 16, 2010, 03:56:10 PM »
If facial expressions can be considered rude, my parents (and I?) might have been considered rude in this situation.

My parents and my aunt and uncle were good friends so we went there often.  We never celebrated birthdays or exchanged birthday gifts with them.  We just visited them and i played with my seven cousins.  On my 7th birthday, we happened to be at their house visiting and my aunt unexpectedly gave me a wrapped gift for my birthday.  I was surprised and excited to get a gift from my aunt.

When I opened it, I was very confused but I still said thank you.  She had given me six cans of a generic condensed split pea soup that someone had given to her (and she didn't like).  I didn't like that kind of soup either but I still said a confused thank you (I didn't know what else to say).  I'm positive that anyone could have seen the disappointment and confusion on my face.

I can still clearly remember the looks on my parents' faces.  My dad's brow was furrowed, his eyes were squinting and his lips were in a tight line.  He was furious.  My mother had the look of total embarrassment and hurt.  Even though neither said a word, their expressions were plain for anyone to see.  Soon after, they made an excuse and we left.

So if facial expressions can be considered rude, we were guilty.  But honestly, I think that we all handled the situation as best we could.

crankycat

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #16 on: December 16, 2010, 03:59:10 PM »
A friends DD was about 3 or 4-ish, and was opening presents. Ripped the paper off and saw a shoebox. With a comment of "oh no, shoes" she tossed the box aside and moved on to the next present.

Her mother retrieved the shoebox, and made her open it to see the really cool gift inside (not shoes). Then explained to DD that what's on the box may not be what's on the inside, and to always be thankful for anything.

Best part is this was videotaped, and gets brought out from time to time.  DD is now 22, and almost every gift giving occasion, someone in their family says "oh no, shoes", just to remind her!

This reminded me of the Christmas when my sister was about 6 or so.  She opened up a box and saw fuzzy blue and her face fell as she assumed it was slippers.  She was encouraged to actually take the gift out of the box and was surprised to find a Grover (from Sesame Street) doll.

EMuir

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #17 on: December 16, 2010, 04:07:15 PM »
I had been working on a piece of scratchboard art for a friend for a while, but this year I finally declared it finished. She was my best friend in University. She and her husband called Saturday to tell me they were coming to town Monday, and would like to meet for supper. Great, I could give it to them in person and not have to ship it.

They were married about seven years ago. They released butterflies at their wedding, and I made some art from photos I took of the butterflies and some flowers in her yard. The log was just artistic license.

I put it in a frame and gave it to them at supper. My friend basically looked at it and then put it back in the gift bag I'd put it in. I can't even remember if she thanked me. She knows I do this kind of art, it's not like she thought I got her a print or something, and I pointed out that it was a butterfly from their wedding. Her husband took it out again and did ooo and aah over it and exclaim about the detail, which made me feel better. When another friend arrived at the restaurant he took it out again and showed it around. But my actual best friend from University seemed totally unimpressed.

I've already decided that I'm not going to do any more art for that friend. Obviously she doesn't care about it. I just wish I'd known she'd feel that way before I did it.

(And her marriage is just fine, they are trying to have a kid as a matter of fact.)
« Last Edit: December 16, 2010, 04:12:05 PM by MollyMurr »

Muffin

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #18 on: December 16, 2010, 05:26:51 PM »
I have a story about myself at a young age, actually.

My grandmother got me a brand new porcelin doll every year for Christmas. I looked forward to this every year. Me and my gram were very close, she lived next door to me. And just about every day-- I'd go to her house and make air popped popcorn and watch a movie.

Well, when I was six or seven... My grandmother thought it'd be a good idea to forgo the doll and get me my own popcorn popper. Great, right?

Not so much.

I opened up the popcorn popper, expecting a new doll. I looked around the room in anger, and immediately chucked the popcorn popper at the side of the fireplace, screaming.

Oh man, was my mom aaaaaangry! I got a good talking to after that. But my poor gram felt so bad, she went out the next day and got me a new doll.

What everyone didn't understand at the time was that it's not that I didn't want the popcorn popper. It's that when I made air popped popcorn-- it was to be with grammy!! Not for the popcorn!!

...To this day, now that she's gone-- I use that popcorn popper all the time.

LadyJaneinMD

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #19 on: December 17, 2010, 09:22:15 AM »
One Christmas I made sweatsuits for two of my brothers.  Both of them are very hard-to-fit sizes, one was very tall, the other very wide.   The tall brother said, 'it doesn't fit right', and the short brother said, 'Black and red, again?'
Yeah.  See if I sew for you again.


Twik

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #20 on: December 17, 2010, 10:14:57 AM »
If facial expressions can be considered rude, my parents (and I?) might have been considered rude in this situation.

My parents and my aunt and uncle were good friends so we went there often.  We never celebrated birthdays or exchanged birthday gifts with them.  We just visited them and i played with my seven cousins.  On my 7th birthday, we happened to be at their house visiting and my aunt unexpectedly gave me a wrapped gift for my birthday.  I was surprised and excited to get a gift from my aunt.

When I opened it, I was very confused but I still said thank you.  She had given me six cans of a generic condensed split pea soup that someone had given to her (and she didn't like).  I didn't like that kind of soup either but I still said a confused thank you (I didn't know what else to say).  I'm positive that anyone could have seen the disappointment and confusion on my face.

I can still clearly remember the looks on my parents' faces.  My dad's brow was furrowed, his eyes were squinting and his lips were in a tight line.  He was furious.  My mother had the look of total embarrassment and hurt.  Even though neither said a word, their expressions were plain for anyone to see.  Soon after, they made an excuse and we left.

So if facial expressions can be considered rude, we were guilty.  But honestly, I think that we all handled the situation as best we could.

While it's nice to be grateful to for all presents, I can see how a gift of canned soup to a 7 yo would make it difficult. If EvilTwik had been there, her expression would have been one of hysterical laughter at the ridiculousness of it. And I can't quite see Aunt saying afterwards, "I don't understand their reaction. I really thought she'd *love* the soup. What 7 yo wouldn't?"

I think the "always be thankful" rule may get stretched a little when the gift is clearly *not* an act of generosity (however misguided) but, as in this case, a way to get rid of something one doesn't want without actually throwing it out.
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DianeRN

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #21 on: December 17, 2010, 10:31:13 AM »
My eight-year-old nephew is very well mannered. The Christmas when he was 5, with each gift he opened he would delightedly exclaim "just what I always wanted" and walk over and hug the giver. Then he would put it on the pile and move on to the next package. It didn't matter if he had no clue what the present was, the same excited reaction and hugs galore. Three years later, he still never fails to say "thank you" for anything he is given.

ghost

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #22 on: December 18, 2010, 05:41:50 PM »
(And her marriage is just fine, they are trying to have a kid as a matter of fact.)

To be fair, that's not always a good indication. In no way does that excuse her reaction, I'm just sayin'.

CookieChica

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #23 on: December 18, 2010, 08:54:55 PM »
Quote
When I opened it, I was very confused but I still said thank you.  She had given me six cans of a generic condensed split pea soup that someone had given to her (and she didn't like).  I didn't like that kind of soup either but I still said a confused thank you (I didn't know what else to say).  I'm positive that anyone could have seen the disappointment and confusion on my face.

It's hard to blame a 7 year old for confusion/disappointment over that sort of gift, particularly when they respond with a thank you and don't throw a fit. I can remember receiving 2 small books of buy one, get one free Burger King coupons as a birthday present when I was 8 and saying "Thank you" to the girl my own age who gave them to me. But I was very confused - I was 8, I didn't buy my own meals and I didn't really eat the "grown-up" meals that the coupons covered.

Kids should be taught to show gratitude and graceful in these situations but they are still young and won't be able to hide every facet of emotion.   

LadyR

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #24 on: December 19, 2010, 02:44:18 AM »
My parents videotaped my six birthday, so this incident comes to mind quite clearly.

One of the boys in my class got me a Keyper for my birthday. As I was about to open his gift, he spotted the Keyper I already had on the bookshelf and started to cry. My mom asked him what was wrong (I was still opening the gift) and he cried about getting me a gift I already had. I finished opening the present and said "that's okay, Mommy and Daddy got me the wrong kind, this is the one I really wanted." The boy felt better and the adults all laughed. Probably not the most diplomatic way to handle the situation, but the boy stopped crying and my parents feelings weren't hurt (my parents had been aware I wanted the horse, but it had been sold out so I'd gotten the snail instead).


purplemuse

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #25 on: December 19, 2010, 01:31:18 PM »
I was listening to a radio show on gratitude at Thanksgiving, and they played a comment from a 6-year-old girl in response to the question:

"Is it lying to say 'thank you' if you get a gift you don't like?"

She said something along the lines of:

"It's kind of a lie, but you should still say 'thank you' anyway, because you might really like the gift once you have a chance to get used to it."

I thought that was pretty deep for someone so young.  Though I don't really see a kid "getting used to" six cans of split-pea soup...

Pinky830

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #26 on: December 19, 2010, 08:18:05 PM »
My kids weren't the most perfectly polite yesterday, I guess, but they tried.

We went to my FIL and SMIL's Christmas craptacular yesterday. You have to understand that FIL is a control freak, a bore, and just not much fun to spend time with. We do not really exchange gifts because SMIL wants to "keep things simple," though she ends up making things as complicated as they can possibly be. They do get a few gifts for the kids, and in previous years the kids have opened their gifts while we're there. So, my kids discovered pretty quickly that they had a couple of gifts under the tree and privately asked me when we were going to open gifts. FIL and SMIL never mentioned them. We'd been there for nearly 3 hours when BIL mentioned offhand, "Oh, yeah, Dad got the kids some gifts. But he doesn't want them to open them until Christmas morning."

My kids didn't say much, but sorry...DD is only 7. DS is 11 and has Asperger's, so it's not always easy for him to keep perspective. They had both been playing in the other room anyway, and they both went back to playing, but DD was sort of sniffling.

BIL picked up on that and said, "Come on, Dad, the kids kind of want to open their presents."

FIL kind of huffed, "Well, fine, if they're going to pout about it."

BIL, bless him, said, "They're not pouting about it. But they weren't expecting to have to wait."

FIL huffed some more and said, "OK, fine. Go open your presents, kids."

And with that happy fanfare, they picked up their gifts. DD got two and DS got one, and they opened them to find...cheap little pink gift soaps from the dollar store for each of them, plus a plastic change purse for DD.

Really, they were both just gobsmacked. Blank looks from each, and DS checks the tag on his to make sure he doesnt have the wrong gift. He doesn't.

I leaned in and whispered, "This is the part where you say thank you." And they did, but honestly I felt bad for them. It was asking a lot for thm to be gracious.

gramma dishes

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #27 on: December 19, 2010, 08:20:12 PM »
Is your FIL's name Mr. Grinch?

Deetee

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #28 on: December 20, 2010, 12:27:15 AM »
Is your FIL's name Mr. Grinch?

Really.  My stepgrandpa just didn't get me gifts He lived with us or near us and I sometimes waited at his house after school. I mention that to show we had a relationship so he wasn't as random a relative as step grandpa might imply. No gifts is kinder than crappy gifts. I just knew he didn't do gifts for me. I think very bad gifts would have hurt.

Iris

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Re: Rude reactions to gifts
« Reply #29 on: December 20, 2010, 12:52:38 AM »
I'm afraid I was inadvertently rude yesterday. [bg]We had early christmas lunch with my brother and SIL as they are going away to SILs family for the actual day and it would be the best chance for us all to get together. We do presents for the kids and a secret santa type thing for the adults so I wasn't expecting any gift at all (my mother drew my name this year and she will see me Christmas day).[/bg]

Anyway, I took along a box of chocolates I recieved as a present at work for everyone to share. When SIL asked why I didn't enjoy them myself I replied "Well, I've just recieved SO MANY chocolates this week. Don't get me wrong, I really appreciate the gifts and it's lovely that people think of me, but I'm trying to minimise the christmas damage. So what I'm trying to do is have ONE for myself, to enjoy them, then share all the rest with other people. It's getting difficult though! (chuckle)"

A free chocolate for anyone who guesses what they had wrapped under the tree as a very sweet 'little' present so I would have something to open? Oooooooooooops.

Luckily my SIL knows me and my foot-in-mouth disease well and laughed her head off when I opened them.

"Can't do anything with children, can you?" the woman said.

Poirot thought you could, but forebore to say so.