Anybody else not giving gifts?

I have gradually stopped giving gifts at Christmas. A few years ago my wife, her mother and I decided to stop swapping gifts at Christmas. That has morphed into not giving anybody anything, even the various kiddos in my life.

I have, as an adult, really disliked Christmas for many of years. The forced conviviality of it all really chaps my hide. So it’s not a huge loss to basically take Christmas off. In fact it’s a relief, and my mood over the holidays has noticably improved.

I explain to all that I have chosen to save my resources for nice birthday presents and a just for the hell of it present every now and then. Nobody seems to mind much, and after a year or two nobody buys me a gift any more. It’s great.

Anyone else gone this route?
Upon posting, I see that my thread title is not as specific as it should be. It should read: Has anyone else quit Christmas for good?

Not exactly for good as I give gifts to the kids, but we decided to scale back this year. My husband’s family didn’t do an exchange at all, so we bought video games for our two nephews and left it at that. Once they turn 18 we won’t purchase gifts for them anymore; they are both 16.

This year my husband and I had someone come in and paint the kitchen, so we aren’t exchanging gifts. That was what I really wanted (those nooks and crannies are hard to do) and hubby couldn’t care less about exchanging gifts.

We paid our daughter’s cell phone bill. Done.
We got our son an IPod touch for a Christmas/birthday gift. Some money in his stocking along with the other trinkets - done.

This has been so nice and relaxing. Maybe we’ll just take a trip next year and forget about the gifts altogether. Hmm…

We bought a different house this year, so we are both good with small gifts this year - we’re living in our big present. :slight_smile:

My family has decided to donate to charities instead of exchanging gifts - I called this morning to put the donation to our favourite charity on my credit card, and DONE! Jim’s family still exchanges gifts - we’ve cut our buying almost in half, though. We’re also splitting the holidays between families, instead of trying to do both on both days (Christmas Eve and Christmas Day) - I think that will greatly reduce our Christmas stress, too.

I quit doing Christmas for about a decade, but was sucked back in when I got into my current relationship.

Now that the GirlChild is grown and out of the house, I’m trying to slowly wean my mates off of the Xmas thing. I have succeeded in getting them to cut down - it used to be absolutely ridiculous, the buying frenzies they’d go into. It’s not like we don’t buy each other gifts the rest of the year.

I was much happier when I didn’t participate in the yearly gift orgy.

We have switched to made gifts for extended family and friends, which has turned into a whole different stress event, but doesn’t bother me nearly as much.

I stopped about five years ago, and far prefer it this way.

The whole thing makes the gifts an obligation rather than something you do because you actually give a shit about the person, which to me misses the point.

Out of obligation, I give presents to two nephews and a great-aunt. As far as I know, though, I’ve negotiated a nil-all win with everyone else.

My mother tried to break it for a couple of years, but I think she got the message when I kept leaving them at her place rather than taking them with me.

We don’t do gifts for each other, and haven’t for many years. That includes birthdays, anniversaries, and greeting card holidays. It just got too competitive and you never get someone exactly what they would want, so it was frustrating as well. On occasion, we send something via mail order to someone who has been particularly nice during the year. Used to send savings bonds to the grandkids and something to the kids, but they rarely acknowledge it, so we’ve given it up. Additionally, now that we’re both retired, and have expenses for the house we just bought, gift-giving is just not in the picture. If we see something we want during the year, we just buy it. That way we know we will both be happy with it.

I haven’t, I’m still stuck in the craziness, but can I just say that I love you? It just makes me feel so much better about my crappy mood to know that others feel the same way. This year is definitely the worst. For the past few years my Christmas mood has been deteriorating…something like “gee Christmas isn’t so much fun when you’re the mom.” “Boy this is a shitload of work” “God, I really hate Christmas” to an all time low of “Fuck fucking Christmas” this year.

I don’t know quite how to quit without hurting the feelings of some people I love very much, but I sure hope I can be like you someday.

I ain’t givin no body nothin.

I haven’t given or received a Christmas gift since 1985, when my all-adult family decided to discontinue the practice. I haven’t missed it.

You know, it’d be funny if the people who feel like you do got together and wrote a reverse version of a Christmas Carol, where becoming a Scrooge at the end makes the main character happier than all those who feel obligated to celebrate.

I mean, I love Christmas, but I’d read it.

I got something for a dear friend, who I’ll be seeing that day – I saw a cookbook by his most favoritest TV chef (Lidia whatsherface from PBS) on sale, so I picked up a copy for him. If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t have gotten him anything. Guess I could save it and give it to him a week later for his bday, but I already warned him I was giving him a Christmas present.

That is the beginning and end of my xmas shopping this year. (Oh, and the Secret Santa here.)

Only buying for the kid sister and the girlfriend this year, everyone else gets cards filled out with some deep thoughts and my autograph.

It’s not for good, but I’m not buying anyone anything for Christmas this year. I’m protesting the over-commercialization of the holidays and the crass consumerism and conspicuous consumption that has taken over this country and corrupted the meaning of it all… okay, really I’m just broke. But boycotting for moral reasons sounds better, doesn’t it?

I started non-participating in the high holy days of conspicuous consumerism and waste just last year and still spent a good bit of time justifying/explaining myself to a mostly mystified audience. I mean, like, omigod, you, like, don’t like shopping?!?!
Er, yes.

I don’t like shopping.
Hate the pressure of enforced holiday obligation.
Hate the waste of resources, financial and otherwise.
Also: I make small money, and my house is 580 square feet.
Everything I need, I have. I can’t afford anything you want!

It worked out great this year in an offhanded way. I had reminded everyone of my no gifts rule in November.

I’ve spent most of the past week with my mom & her partner (B.) at the cardio unit local awaiting B.'s angiogram results and advice on what’s next as far as quality of life for however long it turns out to be.
I can hardly explain how wonderful it is not to have worrying over some fucking present looming over me.

That’s about when we started skipping out on the whole gifty-poo thing too. And similar reasons: when the holidays became a shopping chore, we decided to opt-out. We’re really non-consumers anyway.

Instead, we have a blast doing fun, social stuff and the holiday is all about spending time together, an doing things together, and some volunteering /charity work.

It’s not just a Christmas thing though. Generally the new rule in my family is that if there must be gifts, than they must not be tangible. They must not be stuff! No stuff allowed! So theater tickets are fine, dinner out someplace is great! But no stuff.

This year I’ve got the bestest excuse. I’m studying in Scotland and I’m NOT going “home” for Christmas.

Christmas was bad enough when the family only had one Queen Bee trying to get everybody to form an adoring circle around her and force-feed us. Now we have two and a half (my brother’s mother in law doesn’t do the adoration part).

Basically, my wife and I give gifts only to children (when they were young) and grandchildren now. There is one main exception: my older son’s father-in-law (whom I have met only once, at the wedding) gives us a gift every year and my wife and I reciprocate. I would love to get out of that if I could only figure out how. Still, we send him an astronomical calendar every year, which is under $35, while in the past he has sent us a gift basket. But this year he sent us a gift certificate for $250 for a fancy restaurant in Seattle (we visit our son and family there very year at US Thanksgiving) and I am in a quandary how to reciprocate. But I don’t think I will.

I should mention that I am Jewish and the tradition of giving Chanukah/Christmas gifts only to non-adult children and grandchildren is an old one so this comes naturally to me.

About 20 years ago, my sister, who married into an Italian family, told me that she and her husband give gifts, mostly to his family, that cost around $2000 and that they receive equivalent gifts. She mention that her mother-in-law (who is now deceased) would be incensed to receive that costs less than $500. Now I consider this level of giving insane. It means that all the luxury gifts you get in any year are chosen by others, not all of whom know you very well. And you are doing the same for them.

Another point is that any substantial gifts I give are likely to be cash. This was true of gifts given to me when I was a child. Each of our children got wedding gifts of $5000 and one of them, used it immediately to make a purchase offer on a house, which pleased us no end.

basically not giving gifts cause I’m broke, but otherwise I would. I think everyones getting me a gift though and it makes me feel like a bit of a bum.

Last year I proposed we should not do any gift swapping at any family event. Gifting your spouse and kids was just fine but I was not going to be participating in any gift giving and was not going to be happy to receive any gifts.

I also put the kibosh on the horrendous “yankee swap” gift game my grandparents like to play. $10 is a lot of money to my broke-ass aunt and uncle, and no one I know needs a $10 crap gift that someone bought to throw into a pile.

Last year I suggested that if we must spend $10 we would all put $10 in a pot and play a game. The winner of the game could donate the pot to his/her charity of choice. I thought it was awesome! This year, no one wanted to do it.

This year I had to remind everyone that there’s no gifts. Like they thought last year was a fluke. Guess what? Everyone is still broke this year. NO GIFTS.

For the past 2 weeks I’ve been listening to all my friends bitch and moan about the gift-buying process. I cannot tell you how freeing it is to not have to do the gift thing!! And I do NOT miss getting gifts one bit. I’m not a total Grinch - I do buy people gifts during the year. The forced “what do I get for Uncle Dan?” was just too much.

But…I will admit…now that I have a niece and there is a child in the family once again…I did buy her something today. I didn’t want to be the asshole who didn’t get the baby a gift. She’ll get gifts forever. But not the adults.