Don’t Get Me Anything = You Better Get Me A Gift?
This weekend is our first wedding anniversary. I guess we can no longer call ourselves newlyweds. Eric says I’ll be an old married hag after the weekend. Well, at least officially now. :-)
An interesting thing happened when Eric was traveling for work recently. He had dinner with several co-workers that he doesn’t see very often and they remembered that about this time last year he was getting married. Eric confirmed that our anniversary was approaching.
“So, what are you getting her?”
Eric said “Nothing, we decided not to give gifts for this anniversary”.
“You’re kidding, right? Did she say it was ok not to get her a gift?”
“Yes, we both discussed it and decided that we weren’t going to exchange gifts”.
They couldn’t believe it and refused to accept that I didn’t want anything for our anniversary. All four of them promptly informed Eric that he better get me gift and that it better be a good one. “Jewelry is a clear winner” one of them said with the others nodding in agreement. Another talked about how he had to get his wife something really nice for their first anniversary. They even called over the waitress to ask her what she thought (for a woman’s perspective) and she said “That’s code”. They all felt Eric was making a grave mistake.
Eric, feeling pressured, said that we were going to go out to a nice dinner instead. That seemed to placate the group as they responded that nice dinners are good and that should help. But they still stressed that he better also get me something nice.
When Eric told me this story a few days ago I felt a little insulted. They assumed that I would say one thing while meaning the opposite and that I would be disappointed when he actually did what we agreed on. And they implied that Eric was naive and didn’t understand what I really wanted if he didn’t get me a fancy gift.
Surely not all of these guys got into marriages with women that expect gifts despite saying the contrary. I have to hope that this conversation was some sort of guys-against-girls bonding episode using the stereotype that women always want (and expect) sparkly things. Eric says they were dead serious, though.
I told Eric that he should’ve replied “For our anniversary we are buying a home”. I think that is a damn good gift!
I think the best gift he could give me is working together as a team to buy this new home. Not buying me a present is exactly what I want. It shows his level of commitment to our goal and his ability to avoid social pressure.
If Eric had bought me jewelry I would have been mortified. That may be hard for some people to believe but it is the honest truth. I would have felt betrayed because buying me something like that goes against everything we have been working so hard for this year.
What we are doing to celebrate our anniversary is using some gift certificates we got from cashing in some credit card points to go to dinner. This will give us a nice evening out without affecting our pocket book. I think that is lovely and very appropriate. It makes me smile to think we are celebrating our first anniversary on a dime to help us meet our goal.
Besides, isn’t the first anniversary the “paper” anniversary, anyway? Shouldn’t a card be enough?
Update: Even as I prepare to post this Eric is still asking me if I really am ok with no gifts. Before going to that dinner he never questioned if he was doing the right thing by accepting my wishes at face value. Societal norms can really mess with you, huh?
Image Source: Swamibu