Do people say you're hard to shop for? Are they right?

My entire family, birth and in-laws, insists that I’m hard to shop for. So much so that they reject the notion of suggestions, and insist on the Amazon list. (It had better be a big Amazon list, too, with a wide range of price points. And it had better contain something they’re excited to give me. :dubious: ) I honestly don’t think I am all that hard to shop for–I like animals and almost any sort of craft and cooking and gardening and travelling and reading. It’s not like we’re talking about my 85-year old grandfather who only leaves the house for church and doctor’s appointments and sits around watching tv or napping when he’s at home.

If you want to know if I would like something, there’s a fairly simple set of questions to ask. Is it fuzzy or otherwise have an awesome texture? Can it be squooshed or cuddled? Is there an amusing picture and/or an animal on it? Can I eat it? Can I make something with it? Can I squirrel away things to eat or make things with in it? Can I use it to procure things to eat, make things with, or squirrel things away in? If the answer to any of these questions is yes, you probably have a winner.

What about you?

Yes, I’ve been accused of it. Mostly, it’s because I have niche hobbies (role-playing games, running, playing electric guitar), and buying me anything related to those is a crapshoot, if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for (or if you’re not sure if I already have a particular thing).

Also, I get accused of this because I’m bad about going out and buying things for myself (and, thus, removing them from being possible gifts). Because of this, my wife makes me promise to not buy anything for myself, unless absolutely necessary, after October 1st of each year. :slight_smile:

I use to be.
From a combination of an insatiable father and niche hobbies / interests.
But I appreciate most any gift now. Just don’t wait around for me to use it.

Yes on both counts.

The problem is that I think minimalism is a virtue, so there are plenty of things that might be nice in some theoretical way, but that I really am not so interested in having. If there’s anything I am interested in having, I either got it myself, or it’s so expensive that my relatives aren’t going to be able to afford it.

Heck, it’s hard for me to shop even for myself. If I won a thousand-dollar gift certificate right now, I’d be thinking things like “Well, that big HD TV would be nice, but if I waited until my current TV dies in 20 years, I’ll be able to get an ever better TV then.” I can’t save a gift certificate, so I’d probably try to figure out some way to use it for groceries or office supplies or something along those lines.

Yep, I’m hard to buy for. Most of the things I’m interested in I either have the books for, or it would be hard for anyone (even Madame P.) to know which of the remaining books I want. Praise the Lord for the Amazon wish list! Everybody else knows to get me chocolates, cheese or fruitcake by now.

Anyone who thinks I’m hard to shop for has never been in a liquor store.

They do, but I’m really not. Like dracoi I’m something of a minimalist. It’s hard to come up with an extravagant or clever gift for me. But I’m always happy with a book.

I’m the guy that insists “You don’t need to get me anything, seriously, I have everything I need, but thank you.”

But any kind of gift card is fine, some people feel that is impersonal, I feel that it is awesome.

Sort of… I’m a little Sheldon-esque in not liking the social obligation of gift giving. You give me something, I’ll have to reciprocate… can’t we just give each other thoughtful handmade cards and leave it at that?

I do recognize that not everyone thinks that way and have to give something that is not gift card, so I tell them to get something for my cat. That seems to satisfy their gift giving needs…

I also have niche hobbies so people either get me something totally opposite my personality/lifestyle, or they get it spot-on. I wish more people would simply ask me what I wanted. I don’t mind “spoilers” as waiting heightens anticipation for me - and sometimes I even manage to forget what I asked for!

And for some reason when people get me or my husband gift cards, the cards are for stores we don’t shop at. That’s an odd one.

I admit I’m a bit picky. I’m not happy with just any book, for instance, though you might think that I would be. You get me a movie cover version and I’m going to return it. Get me a paperback and I’ll just sit there pining after the hardback version. So there’s weird stuff like that to throw into the mix.

Yes, and they are absolutely right. I don’t really do anything and my income is enough that if i want something i just buy it for myself.

I cut the problem in half by not celebrating Christmas, and for birthdays most of the family is either just cards or gift cards inside cards (Amazon, iTunes). Straying outside that leads to frustration and weirdness (I got a cd of Inuit flute music once - no idea why).

That’s about it for me. If I want a book or game or electronic toy, I’ll just buy it. If it’s something expensive enough for me to not casually purchase then my wife feels she needs to make sure she has the details down before buying me the wrong toy. Which means asking me and spoiling the surprise and then complaining that I’m difficult to shop for.

Yes, they do say this about me and they’re right. I have all the gadgets I need (laptop, iPad, Kindle), I read a lot but most people wouldn’t know what to buy since I buy books for myself all the time. Anything else - if I want something, I just buy it.

My elder son is hinting at us doing the Kris Kringle thing next year. I think I may end up agreeing to this.

I find this very annoying. Just pay attention. And if you can’t pay attention, give me a gift card. If I ever get one more basket of bath salts etc. I may scream.

Once someone actually gave me a toilet paper holder. It was Pinocchio’s nose. What about me says I want a toilet paper holder? Let alone Pinocchio?

Oh dear, I’m fucking broke and I need everything! But I don’t like buying things or receiving gifts. Yes I’m hard to shop for. Shopping for myself pisses me off! My daughter’s just given me seventy five quid to spend on line … total trauma! The postage from the UK plus the duty I’ll have to pay at this end makes things really not doable, I’ll have to find someone coming over and what with the strict luggage weight thing not only am I difficult to buy for - but in this case it’s got to be small and light and the UK is really expensive compared to the US and things like perfume are cheaper here. Gah.

My poor kid - almost everyone else has given up thank goodness. My mother still sends me t shirts with irritating things on that people would have to scan my tits up close to read and pieces of fashion jewelery - I don’t wear jewelery. I did ask her for arugula seeds, but she didn’t send them.

No, I don’t think anyone would ever think this for me. Usually people who are described this way have “everything” already. I sure as hell don’t.

But I am picky about clothes. Pajamas or underwear are fine. But anything that I must wear in out in the public? I’d rather another person not do that kind of purchasing for me.

Another vote for acknowledging being hard to shop for. The things I want are generally cheap and few enough that I buy them for myself. (An occassional *good *bottle of Scotch for example …) Those that I don’t are more expensive than anyone would get for me (I do lust after the Tesla S.)

No, not hard at all. Just buy me some good quality tools. Snap-on, Mac, Proto, S&K, DeWalt, Rigid, or even Craftsman. Used tools of any good brand are just fine with me! Pawn shops and garage sales are the best place to find these. If the ones you buy are duplicates, I will trade the old ones to the tool man of my choice for what I need or want.

If you MUST buy me clothes, please include the receipt so that I can return the item. It is usually too small or to short. If it fits fine, it is simply not my style and I will wear it to fix the truck. It will get very dirty and you will get very mad when you see it in all of its filthy glory! No paisley print please! Plain pocket T-shirts XXL (long tail If possible) please. Goodwill loves some of my in-laws.

A gift certificate is good. Please consider my lifestyle. I never go out to fancy $50.00 a plate restaurants. I am more of an Outback kind of fellow. Denny’s or IHOP works for me. Sears, Tractor Supply, Barns & Nobles, Sutherland’s, or Habitat for Humanity are all just fine.

If you give a gift to your “socially correct” charity in my name, Please do NOT give them my contact information. It took me over three years to get these *&^% folks to leave me alone! So, PLEASE, do not do that! I give to the charities of my choice. If you want a list of these, ASK!!

All of the above are suggestions for those who can not understand that a gift from you to me, just because a holiday or my birthday is occurring, is unnecessary. I do not need a confirmation that you care for me. If you do, it will be obvious. If you do not, that will also be obvious. I really do not need a gift.

Thanks for letting me say all of this, 48.

Honestly, I find most adults with means to buy what they want kind of hard to shop for. I’m the same way. Gift certificates usually work well if I know someone is working to buy something relatively expensive; otherwise, I try to keep my eyes out most of the year in case I see something that a friend or family member might like. I seem to find the best stuff on the most random occasions - I’ve learned to get it when I can.