12 things you should never give your wife for Christmas

Buying a gift for your wife for Christmas this year? Here are some hints as what NOT to give.

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  • Are you one of those men that wait until Christmas Eve to buy your wife's gift? She probably has had your gift for weeks, and it is already wrapped and placed under the tree, but you just can't figure out what to get her. While I can't tell you the perfect gift to give your wife, I can tell you what NOT to give her. I must mention that while the following list is pretty accurate, everyone is different. You may have a gourmet chef as your wife, so some fancy frying pan is just what she wants, but as a rule of thumb, if it is not her all-time favorite hobby, or she hasn't asked for it directly, stick to the list for things not to buy.

  • 1. Cookware

  • Pots, pans, plates, cups, they are very impersonal and suggest that a woman belongs in the kitchen cooking and doing dishes. Not a great idea, guys.

  • 2. Cleaning supplies

  • Do you expect your wife to jump up and down with joy and immediately start cleaning the house when you give her a vacuum? That is not a gift at all, but rather a necessary purchase you budget for the home.

  • 3. Something you wanted

  • Don't be all sneaky and buy something you've been wanting and then put your wife's name on the gift. She will know who the PlayStation is really for as soon as she opens the box, no matter how much you try to convince her it is something the both of you can do together.

  • 4. Laser hair removal

  • While I would honestly like to get some laser hair removal done, if my husband gave it to me as a gift I would automatically think he did not like something about me. Even if my hairy legs appall him, he should never mention it, especially as a cleverly-disguised Christmas gift.

  • 5. Gym membership

  • A gym membership? Does this mean you think your wife should work out more? Does this mean you think she is fat? Does this mean you think she has too much time on her hands and should be spending it at the gym? I think you can see how this gift would go over.

  • 6. Underwear

  • Underwear was the dreaded gift when you were a child, and it still is as an adult. No one should pick another person's underwear out for them unless it comes in the form of a gift card for Victoria's Secret.

  • 7. Appliances

  • I remember one year my dad was so excited to give my mom an electric can opener for Christmas. She had been complaining about how hard it was to use her hand crank one, and he thought this was a perfect gift. He built it up so much that she couldn't wait to open it. Imagine her disappointment when inside the box was not some beautiful scarf or box set of books by her favorite author, but rather a can opener. Needless to say, it did not go over well. Appliances, just like cleaning supplies and dishes, are gifts for the home, not the wife.

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  • 8. Recipe book

  • Anything to do with cooking is not a great idea. Instead, why not take your wife out to dinner? Or, better yet, YOU make dinner and do the dishes. That would be a real gift.

  • 9. Homemade coupons

  • You know the ones I mean: good for one foot massage or good for one snuggle. Your wife should not need a coupon for you to give her a massage or cuddle; you should be doing that anyway. A coupon is just adding insult to the fact that you're not already doing those things for free.

  • 10. Something for the car

  • You really think seat covers or an ice scraper for a car that both of you drive says how you really feel about your wife? Items for the car fall under "car maintenance" not "Christmas gift for wife."

  • 11. Something you have both been saving to buy

  • Have you decided as a couple to buy a new computer? Have you done all the research and put money aside each month to be able to afford it? If so, continue to do that. Don't just go out and buy it as her gift. She knows how much it costs; she knows you were going to buy it anyway. That is not a gift, just you jumping the gun.

  • 12. Nothing

  • Lastly, don't just give her nothing. Even if you said "no gifts" this year, this does not mean come Christmas morning she is going to expect nothing. Make her breakfast, frame a cute picture of the two of you for her office, write her a poem, give her something. It doesn't have to cost money, it doesn't have to take tons of time, just put a little thought into it and make sure it is out of the ordinary of what you regularly do for her.

  • The bottom line is, a gift should be a reflection of how you feel about someone. It should be something the person would not buy for themselves, and it should be given out of love, not duty. If you are truly at a loss for what to give your wife, spend a day listening to her. She will drop hints. It may not be very direct, but pay attention. For example, if she complains about never having alone time to shower, give her all the necessary items for a luxurious bubble bath, but don't stop there. Make sure the bathtub is clean, and then take the kids out of the house and let her have a bubble bath by herself. By putting just a bit more effort into your gift, she will appreciate it. Do something just for her and you will be successful this Christmas.

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Megan Shauri graduated with a bachelors in anthropology and a masters in psychology. She is a mother of twins.

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