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    Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    created by animal lover 26 days 12 hours 57 minutes ago

    Category: Entertainment

    Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hello CNET.

    The holidays are approaching fast. Thanksgiving is next week. Then Christmas cheer will fill our homes.

    So do you feel obligated to give coworkers , friends and family gifts ?

    Do you ever feel you do not have the money or that you over spend ?

    I only give gifts to my immediate family. I do not have friends and coworkers I want to gift. I set a budget and do not go over. I do not get elaborate gifts , but I try to be thoughtful and resourceful. I get items people actually need. It is easy to gift family because I observe their needs and fulfill them. I also do not want to spend money on people outside my family because I do only have so much money to spend.

    I sometimes feel Christmas makes us over give. It is one thing to be kind and another to break the bank.

    What are your thoughts ?


    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hi Julia.

    I do think that gift giving is a financial burden and it can be unfortunate when people have really different expectations for how gift giving should work.

    My mom likes to buy lots of presents for people instead of fewer, higher quality presents. I really wish this weren't the case because I really prefer to buy people things that won't end up in the landfill and therefore things tend to cost more money and I buy fewer of them. Still, for her it seems the main thing is the size of the pile of presents, and that really isn't what I'm into.

    In addition, I am really trying to aggressively pay down my student loans, and I can get annoyed when people think I "should" be able to afford more, but don't realize I might have personal financial goals that take precedence over gift giving.

    In my opinion, we should be able to make our own boundaries when it comes to gift giving but it's hard in our consumer culture.

    Thanks for the timely forum!


    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hi Juila,

    I do think I tend to over give at Christmas time. I'm always so strapped after Christmas! I am so afraid that my kids wont like what I get them-which is dumb-they are very thankful of everything! I think more than anything I just want to get things for people that I know they've been wanting and that they won't buy themselves.

    In the last few years I have tried to gift experiences instead of things. Like tickets to things, memberships, etc.

    It's so fun to see peoples faces light up when they enjoy their gifts.

    My coworkers and I have an understanding that we just exchange cards. I like to sometimes make cookies for my kids bus drivers, teachers etc.

    -mtteacher (Becky)

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hey Julia!

    This is my first year having a job and I ding feel obligated at all to give gifts to anyone. If I want to buy someone a gift then I'll do so. I was raised in a family where my brothers and I always got things for Christmas when we were very very young, then my parents decided to let us know when we got older that Christmas was never about having to go spend a bunch of money to buy gifts for everyone you work with or family, it was about the celebrating the life of Christ (for those who believe) and being together as a family for that day and appreciating what and who we have in our lives.

    So after the lost of my great-grandmother last November and my grandma this past July, being around family is the greatest gift to have, not material things. Nobody should ever feel obligated to buy a gift, nor should someone ever expect a gift. This is just my opinion, too each his own on how they celebrate any holiday, no judgment from me. Everyone should be happy and thankful!

    Have a great day!


    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hi Julia,

    Unlike most years, Christmas is not burden and I am able to afford gifts for other people. At the same time, people seem to like personal things that do not have the cost a lot of money. I used to make people drawings for gifts. I probably will continue to do that. It is more meaningful anyway.



    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hello, Julia

    My family has made it a point to make sure I know that I do not need to give gifts. I am not in the position financially to get gifts for everyone. This year, I am only getting gifts for my significant other as I want him to have an easier time adjusting to being home after spending 4 months at Fort Benning. I want to make it a special holiday.

    I would love to have the financial means to meaningfully give gifts to everyone in my family but that's just not possible at the moment.


    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hey Julia,

    I think this is consumerism is getting the best of us when we let a holiday break our financial situation.

    I’m trying to be creative and thoughtful with my gifts. Including reusing old drawings for wrapping paper! I’m gathering good gifts as well as making them. I’m also buying some but they are very small and cheap. I haven’t made a spending budget, though, which might be a good idea to start now early in the process!

    Have a good night,

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    Hey Hey!

    Could be for some people. That’s why I break up with all my friends every year at Christmas time. Looking out for lonely ol number one!

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    @Teebee , 100% student loans are priority. It can be hard balancing the holidays and all of it cost. Sounds like your mom is trying to impress rather than be a smart gift giver. I always give gifts that will be useful for a long time not just a month and then become junk. I think you are on the right track !

    @Becky , I don't have kids. but I can only imagine the feeling of wanting them to feel loved . Apart of Christmas is to give your kids gifts they may not normally get. I know my mother always tried to give me gifts I put on my list to Santa. Each year I have felt like I was not well taken care of come Christmas. It is not all about money , but a gift to your kids shows you appreciate them as well.

    @Thankful , that's a good attitude to have. There is no reason having money should make you feel compelled to do anything you would not usually do. I am sorry for your loss. I am happy that you can surround yourself with family this holiday season !

    Awesome Comments !

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    @Song , I am glad you are in a position to gift people. Being thoughtful does feel good when you see the person open their present !

    @Alexis, Sometimes the little things are way more meaningful. Despite your financial situation it is good you are looking to uplift your mate.

    @Bella , Consumerism is a drug. It can not be avoided. The holidays bring out the worst. I still find that creative gifts are still more meaningful. It is never what you get , but the thought and intent of the item.

    @Slynch 888, Sounds like a lonely cheap Christmas. Hope things get worked out in the new year. Number one is good , but what is one without all the other numbers!

    Thanks for your comments !

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?


    So first of all, my family and I always work together to make sure we have everything we need. We don't just spend money and buy things we don't need - we're pretty open about our needs, so Christmas gifts for us is less for surprises, but more to take care of each other. I love that.

    I stressed for so many years getting friends presents - getting them candles and body lotions and what not. But after a while, you realise that it's not about the gifts anymore. It's about the time you spend together. So we skipped the gifts, and plan dinners and concerts together instead.

    I'm excited for Christmas!

    Re: Is Gift Giving a FINANCIAL BURDEN ?

    It has definitely felt that way for the last couple of years. Especially because I have family members who are over-the-top with their gift giving and it makes me feel shitty that I can only afford a small, cheap or hand-made gift for everyone else :/ I have 5 married siblings and 9 nieces/nephews on my side alone, and now that I'm getting married I have to think about my in-laws and their kids too! That's a lot of people!

    I voiced my opinion against reinstating an office secret santa. For one, I don't feel like getting my co-workers gifts, especially since I work for attorneys who make easily 3x what I make. And for another I think it puts too much pressure on new people at a job to mandate that they buy a stranger a present.