6 Reasons Gift Giving is Actually Super Awkward

That’s right, we’re about to go Grinch on you.

Cause it’s almost time to unwrap those pretty packages under the tree.

And was well as those gifts accessorize the dying pine needles, and even despite the goodness they may ultimately contain, the thought of unwrapping them is borderline anxiety attack inducing for some.

Why? Well, it can get awkward.

Like, really awkward….

1. You Never Know How Much to Spend
Money’s pretty much always awkward. Especially if you’re in a new(ish) relationship, you never really know how much to spend. You don’t want to embarrass the other person by going all out when they didn’t, or to have the opposite happen, as you (fully red-faced) try to explain that you “forgot” half of the gift, or that there’s an additional “experiential portion” coming soon (as in, as soon as you buy it).

2. Wrapping
Wrapping is a skill. Period. And these days, it’s all about presentation. If you can barely fold a napkin, yet alone wrap a gift, you’re in for a long evening of wasted paper, fingers that get taped together, and a lot of wine. In other words, you can expect to snap out of that warm, fuzzy holiday feeling as quickly as you got into it. Not to mention you’ll likely be handing over a gift that looks like it came direct from a four-year old.

3. You’re the Centre of Attention, Whether You Like it or Not
Especially for those who’d rather blend in with their significant other’s (massive) family gathering, nothing puts you more front and centre than your turn to unwrap a gift. With every eye on you, and with no idea what to expect, your reaction will be noticed by all (and sometimes immortalized on video).

4. You May Have to Tap into Those Acting Skills
Because you’re the centre of attention for those few moments of unwrapping, and because you may wonder what the other person was thinking when they purchased the gift, odds are you’re going to have to tap into those inner “acting skills.” And if you thought your monologue in high school drama was awkward, unwrapping the world’s worst gift in front of your future mother in law – and pretending to like it – will make you think again.  

5. The Potential for Inappropriateness is High
Not only could you open the world’s worst gift, if it’s highly inappropriate it will only make the awkward factor so much worse. Whether it’s racy lingerie from your mother-in-law (she must really want grandchildren) to a self-help book from your best friend (what’s that supposed to mean?), it almost seems that some people make this whole exchange torturous on purpose.

6. It’s Not Always Reciprocal
It’s not always easy to decide who to shop for come holiday season. And if you’ve ever been in this situation, you know that a one-way gift exchange has the potential to set an awkward and disappointing tone for Christmas dinner, no matter how hard the empty handed one tries to recover.

Although the awkward factor may be impossible to avoid, here are some ways to better prepare for it.

Good luck. You’re going to need it. 


Cover photo from: istock.com

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