What People Don’t like about Gift Giving for Christmas

Christmas and giving gifts as Christmas can be a very stressful time. Yet every year, we go through it all again. We endure it because we must. So what is it that people don’t like about giving gifts for Christmas?

Lack of Necessity

It irritates people, in the extreme, to feel compelled to give gifts to somebody that they see once a year. Especially if they see the person so infrequently and perhaps don’t even like them or know them well enough to either like or dislike them.

Why buy gifts for these people? It is a waste of effort and money. Particularly now, during the pandemic with its restrictions and economic effects, the idea of giving unnecessary gifts seems to feel worse than ever.

Fear of Losing Face

Will they like what I gave them? How will I handle it if they don’t? Every time we give a gift to someone important, we worry over whether they will be happy with the present. The more we 

We hate the idea that our effort might be rejected as inferior and be unwanted. We dread that false smile and “Oh, how lovely.” It’s a loss of face.

The poor gift and the poor response is terrible to endure. It is a source of dishonour, and that is the biggest reason, perhaps, to dislike gift-giving at Christmas or any other time.

Time Pressure

The Christmas season needs people to do so many things that time is a constant problem. Presents for this person and that person, and presents for family, friends, and colleagues take time. So many gifts and so little time.

The endless hunt for the perfect gift for each person when there are all the other things to do, like your normal job and cooking and looking after family and now presents. For what? To be rejected? Gift-giving is hell.


Buying all these presents is an effort. But it also requires money. Even if you make presents yourself, there is still the cost of ingredients or materials. Again, why all the effort?

In times when money is increasingly tight and prices are climbing, can we afford to buy presents? Could we afford it before? Now it is worse. Not all of us have credit cards and even though we don’t want to we will use them and pay interest making the purchases more expensive, 

Only businesses get rich from gift-giving. Don’t you hate that? We just get poorer.


The reason we hate gift-giving is simple and can be summed up in one sentence. Gift-giving for Christmas has too much stress attached to it. To put it at its absolute worst – we spend the time we don’t have, the money we can’t afford to buy presents for people we hardly know and don’t like and risk losing face. What is not to hate in that situation? There is nothing to love about it.

In the immortal words of Ebenezer Scrooge, “Bah! Humbug!”

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