Let’s face it: men have a reputation for giving their wives gifts that are utterly thoughtless, insensitive, and tactless. Why do men have this reputation? Because they’ve earned it, that’s why! While some men are just inconsiderate boors, most are genuinely perplexed at what to get their wife for Christmas. Men tend to think practically, not romantically, and that gets them into a LOT of trouble when it comes time to exchange gifts.
Men, I am here to implore you: think before you buy a gift for your wife. Do some research. On that note, here is a list of things to NOT get for your wife to get you started. Ignore at your own peril!
Never, never, never, never get your wife something “for the house.” Nothing says “You’re nothing more than a housemaid” than an appliance. This includes, but is not limited to, vacuum cleaners, blenders, toasters, telephones, coffee makers, irons, and mixers. This is the height of thoughtlessness, guys, and will definitely put a damper on the Christmas festivities, not to mention your marriage. Think of how you’re going to explain that toaster-sized hole in the living room wall to your friends when they come to visit.
Exception: If your wife is a coffee aficionado a really nice espresso maker would make a splendid gift. I’m not talking about a Mr. Coffee coffee maker, I mean a nice espresso maker, and those things don’t come cheap! (Notice I said “if your wife is a coffee aficionado.” Don’t get her an espresso maker because you like espresso. This goes for any gift you get for your wife.)
Do NOT, under any circumstances, attempt to enhance your wife’s wardrobe with clothing. Just don’t. No matter your intentions, you will fail miserably.
Imagine the following: it’s Christmas morning, and your wife is radiant with anticipation over the awesome gift you undoubtedly spent a lot of time picking out. You hand her the present and she rips off the beautiful paper that you took so much time to have the kid at the mall kiosk wrap it with. She opens the box and finds…a night gown her grandmother wouldn’t have worn were she still alive (God rest her soul). What’s more: it’s a size 14. Your wife is a size 4. Oopsie. Dinner is going to be, well, awkward to say the least. Furthermore, no matter what you have done in your life – the orphans you have fed, the puppies and unicorns you have saved from certain death, the acres of rain forest you have personally restored – you will always and forever be reminded of your total FAIL on this Christmas morning.
Men, I cannot emphasize enough: DO NOT BUY CLOTHES FOR YOUR WIFE! YOU…WILL…FAIL!
Exception: Your wife has specifically shown you something she would like: a nice leather jacket or a nice pair of boots, for instance. In this instance you need to write it down! Get the size, color, shape, brand, style, and store it came from. Make sure you have exact specifications from your wife. Do not, under any circumstances, try to work from memory, because you will not get it right. If you have any doubt whatsoever about your ability to get it right, move on to something else because you’re just going to screw it up. Trust me.
Yes, this is an article of clothing and as such should fall under the “clothing” section, right? Wrong! Lingerie deserves its own special category. If you decide to buy your wife lingerie for Christmas here is what she is hearing you say:
“You aren’t sexy enough so I thought I’d help you out.”
“You don’t dress sexy enough so I thought I’d help you out.”
“I saw this on a hot Victoria’s Secret model and thought you would look, if not just as hot, maybe close, because you’re not all that hot.”
“I saw this on a hot Victoria’s Secret model and…and…well, she was hot, what can I say?”
You get the idea. Because this is an article of clothing all of the rules for clothing apply, so reread the clothing section just to make sure you don’t go down this road of certain doom.
Really? A gift card? This is what your wife hears you saying if she gets a gift card from you:
“I’m too lazy to really find a nice gift for you.”
“I’m too lazy to figure out what you really like.”
“I’m too self-absorbed to find out what you really like.”
“I’m a thoughtless boor with no imagination.”
“I have no idea what your interests are because I really don’t pay attention to you all that much.”
Gift cards are best left to high-school graduates, small children, and the cousin/nephew you only see once a year. It doesn’t matter what the gift card is for, whether it’s Nordstrom’s, Macy’s, or your local theater. Nor does the denomination of the card matter. The card value could be for $1,000 and your wife would still get one message: you really don’t think all that highly of her.
No gift cards for your wife. She deserves a lot more for putting up with you all year.
See gift cards above, you thoughtless jerk.
Anything related to weight loss
It does not matter what your thought process is if you get something for your wife that is related to weight loss, for she will hear one thing loud and clear:
“My husband thinks I’m a fat pig.”
Meanwhile, your fat behind is wondering what the problem is and why she doesn’t appreciate your gift-giving prowess. Don’t go there. This includes weight-loss books, fitness equipment, and gym memberships. Even if she has expressed a desire to lose weight, get fit, or be healthier do not, under any circumstances, open up this can of worms.
A better idea is to wait until New Year’s to make a resolution – for BOTH of you – to lose weight and live healthier. Then you can both join a gym (that you both have checked out and agreed upon) or pick out a piece of home equipment together (I recommend a gym membership…home exercise equipment usually ends up becoming a clothes rack).
Is your wife a teenager? No? Put the kibosh on the stuffed animals. She outgrew them years ago.
Chocolates (or any other candies)
Unless you’re getting some high-falutin’ gourmet chocolates this is a gift better left for…well, never, really.
Does your wife really, really want a new handbag from Gucci, Coach, or some other high-end brand name? Purchase it from Gucci or Coach to make sure you’re getting an authentic product. If you seek out such products on E-bay or Craigslist you are most likely going to end up with a fake. Give your wife the real deal.
There are other reasons not to purchase fake items. It feeds an illicit trade that takes sales away from the businesses that spend time and money to create their designs. This is outright theft. Another reason to avoid fakes is that many forgery rings funnel their cash into other illicit trades such as narcotics, sex-slavery, and terrorism. Do you really want to be a party to any of that?
If you want to give a thoughtful gift to your wife, give her an authentic product that you can be sure isn’t funding something you wouldn’t want to be a part of.
My family doesn’t put a big emphasis on presents at Christmas time. Our holiday is focused more on family and togetherness. Sure we exchange gifts, but that’s not our focus. While any gift should be appreciated (after all, it’s the thought that counts, right?) we should endeavor to put some thought into the gifts we give.
Guys, take the time to find out what your wife’s interests and likes are before heading out to the local mall to grab something just to have a gift to give. Your wife deserves better than that, and your marriage deserves better than that. By giving a gift that reflects your wife’s interests and likes it shows that you are paying attention and that she is worth the time and effort it takes to find something meaningful. She will appreciate it. Have a Merry Christmas!