There are a lot of people in this world that are just terrible gift givers. They are either thoughtless, lazy, selfish, or just plain stupid. Valentine's Day should be easy. A box of chocolates and some flowers is usually all it takes to get it right. Not everyone gets it right.
These stories, curated from Reddit, expose the worst gift givers in people's lives. Like the guy that got a creepy blanket with a photo of his girlfriend's whole family on it or the woman than got candy made from silver - completely useless in many ways! Content has been edited for clarity.
He Didn’t Get Her At All
“Two bags of Lays potato chips, a dinosaur from Dollar Tree, and some coupons. We had been dating for three years at that point.
I cried so hard to my best friend and told him that he didn’t understand me.
Money was not an issue, he genuinely thought I would like the gifts.”
The Spy Car
“For one of our first Valentine’s, my ex-wife gave me some kind of kids ‘spy toy’ that was basically a microphone attached to a remote control car.
Something you give and eight-year-old that they play with once and forget about.
I like toys, I like gadgets, but this was just an odd V-day choice. I was internally offended at how thoughtless it was, but never said anything. I’m not really hung up on Valentine’s gifts, I like experiences better, like a nice home cooked dinner, but this really struck me as particularly careless.
Now if I’d used this listen in on her conversations years later, it might have actually done it’s job.”
Better Off Without Him
“I was with this guy for well over a year, we broke up a little after Valentine’s Day, but not because of the gift. But it was safe to say we knew each other very well, and I’ve VERY vocal about things I do or don’t like.
Every summer I rave about my dad’s fresh strawberries from his garden, and at random points in the year I’ll express that the ONLY strawberries I’ll eat are the ones from my dad’s garden. I’m a VERY picky eater and anyone who knows me longer than a month knows this. A month before Valentine’s Day, my at-the-time boyfriend and I were talking with one of our friends, when she brought up how for her birthday her mom got her a bouquet of chocolate covered fruit and she was excited to eat it.
Well Mr. BF told me that’s a great idea for my birthday, and then asked what I thought and I said ohhhhh no no no, I do NOT like chocolate covered fruit of any kind AT ALL, EVER. I brought it up many times before and after how I DO NOT like chocolate covered fruit, ESPECIALLY strawberries. So Valentine’s rolls around and I made him a bunch of cookies and cupcakes and cute other things. He worked at a grocery store then, and he got off work and stopped by briefly to give me my gift, of which was bought from the store he worked, and it was ~drum roll please~ chocolate covered strawberries! My least favorite thing in the whole wide world!
A month later he calls me up, and something is clearly upsetting him, so he said he’d come by and we’d go to the park to talk. Halfway to the park I notice the make up doing a crap job at hiding the hickeys all over his neck. He insists I wait til we get to the park because ‘we have pizza.’
It turns out the other half of the ‘we’ was my ex, and the pizza? Was made by the chick he cheated on me with because she ‘felt sorry for me.’
He was the gift giving king.”
Not The Kind Of Moves She Was Expecting
“My ex-boyfriend, whom I had just broken up with, gave me an electronic chess set. Like a computerized chess board, where you can play against an electronic opponent. Because I had said I wanted to learn how to play chess, I wanted him to teach me.
And, you know, he said, now that we were broken up , I would have time…to play chess. Alone.
He seriously thought this was a good gift.”
Men Can Be Cruelly Thoughtless
“My first serious boyfriend. College.
I got him a nice watch engraved with his initials and our date which was pretty significant considering I was a broke college student. I suspected nothing when he said he would give me my present later. We went to the mall to kill time before dinner and after, he wants to go to Victoria’s Secret.
That’s typically not his bag, but whatever. He asks me to try something on and ushers me into a dressing room. I spend about 10 minutes in there with no sign of him and we leave with nothing, which is fine because I don’t want anything from there anyway. Later at dinner, he slides my gift into my lap: a Victoria’s Secret gift card.
Now, some might think it’s not a horrible gift, but we had lots of problems with a disparity in thoughtfulness/effort in the relationship. I mention how ironic it is that we were just in that store this afternoon. The next day, I call the number on the back of the card and find out it was purchased while I was in the dressing room!
I felt like a total chump. Even if he HAD put some forethought into it, it felt like a gift straight out of the 1950’s to me. I’m all for lingerie, but this was so out of character for him. It was literally because we happened upon the store and he must’ve thought, ‘Chicks like this.’
I had been putting so much effort into the relationship and he had stopped reciprocating, but still acted like his world was crumbling if I brought up ending things. Welp, I ended things.”
Don’t Take Gifts From The Creepy Guy
“There was a creepy guy who liked me in my high school math class. He was the ‘trying-to-grow-facial-hair-but-it-just-looks-like-a-mangy-cat’ sort of dude, if you know what I mean.
I was always polite but I wasn’t really interested.
Anyway, out of the blue for Valentine’s Day, he gave me a vial of his spit on a yarn necklace.”
She Wasn’t Just Disappointed, She Was Offended By His Gift
“When I was in college, my boyfriend and I didn’t have a ton of money. We agreed that we’d celebrate by going to dinner and a movie and that we wouldn’t do presents. The big day rolled around and we carried on with our plans.
When we got back to his apartment, he told me that he knew we had agreed to not do presents (I was immediately mortified because I hadn’t gotten him anything!), but that he’d gotten me just a ‘little something.’
He brought out a really pretty gift bag and I was both touched and mad because we had agreed on no presents and here he was giving me something super thoughtful. Until I opened it.
It was the saddest excuse for lingerie. It was basically just strings to tie around my body in a provocative and teasing fashion.
I can’t even explain how offended I was. He didn’t mean to offend me or upset me, but there was something about receiving that gift that angered me beyond reason.
I left in tears and never wore that string. I thought the gift was going to be something sweet and meaningful and when it turned out to be lingerie, I felt dirty and trashy because it was something so intimate. I was 19 and inexperienced! To him it was fun and frisky, but for me it was hurtful.”
The Guy Pretty Much Just Didn’t Care
“My now ex boyfriend, of over 3.5 years, was basically notorious for terrible gifts, here’s some lovely examples:
Our last V-Day together takes the cake! Not only did he let his mom pick the gifts because he didn’t care, he was there to approve though, but I was allergic to most of it.
I have three skin diseases, needless to say it’s pretty sensitive and can be easily irritated. I can only use natural kind creams, no artificial scent kind of stuff. I’m also very sensitive when it comes to fake metal, if it’s the kind that will turn your skin green, as I’ll get a rash for over a week. I received; a pinky ring smaller than my pinky (somehow managed to squeeze it on) that gave me a rash in literally 30 minutes, pink lotion that burned my skin the second it came into contact with me and pink glitter body spray/perfume that also burned to the touch. Even if I wasn’t allergic to it, I hate the color pink, would never use lotion unless it’s for medical purposes, hate glitter and am far from the type to wear body glitter.
For our second Christmas, he bought me a small pizza since my parents were going to a friend’s house for dinner; instead of spending time together he washed his car in my front lawn (live in NC, freezing) for two hours, then had the balls to get mad and insult me because I ate the small pizza by myself, my gift that he said two hours earlier that he wanted none of it.
Nothing for any of my birthdays.
First Christmas, I received a $1 bag of popcorn.
Our first Valentine’s day, 8 months together mind you, he straight up didn’t care enough to get me anything. His mom felt so bad that she went out bought me a bunch of discount candy and a bear to make up for her jerk son.”
She Didn’t Even Try Out The Gift!
“My girlfriend gave me a product called Doc Johnson’s Good Head. It’s a flavored liquid type thing to put use for…well…giving head. My ex girlfriend basically never did that second thing so it seems like a great gift, right? She’s basically telling me the head in the relationship is finally going to stop being one-sided. Well, 6 months later, we broke up and it had still never been used. She basically got me, as a present, a physical reminder that she was selfish in bed.
The worst part of these is that she was super into gifts. When her birthday or Christmas or something was coming up, she would ask me several times per day leading up to it what I got her. She would also ask me to buy her small presents all the time. If she bought me a Faygo when she was grocery shopping, it was her buying me a present, but if I stopped at the candy story and picked her up a treat, it was just candy and not a present.
Clearly, I’m still harboring some resentment here.
The following Christmas, she gets me a red shirt and a tie because even though I told her multiple times that I am not comfortable wearing a shirt that isn’t white with a suit, she didn’t like that I always wore a white shirt when wearing a suit. Again, a gift for me that was actually for herself.
For another Christmas, she got me a watch. Not really into watches, but it was a nice watch so not so bad. Then she tells me that she got it for me so that I don’t have to wear the watch I already had when we go to weddings etc., and so that she doesn’t have to be embarrassed that I’m wearing that watch. She got me a gift that was really for her.”
He Thought She Was Just Like His Mom?
“My very first boyfriend called me up one day and told me he was at a garden center, and he wanted to pick out a stone statue for his mom as a gift. He told me there was a sea lion, a mermaid, and a few others. Which one did he think his mom would like?
I was like, ‘Well, you know your mom better than me, but I think she would like the sea lion one.’
Cut to a few weeks later on Valentine’s Day, he gives me a weirdly shaped present that’s really crazy heavy, and I open it to find a stone sea lion garden statue sitting in front of me.
First off, I was living in an apartment, so I didn’t even have a garden. Second off, when I gave him this suggestion, I was thinking about his MOM, not me. And third off, I could probably let this slide if we had only been dating for a few months or even a year, but at this point we had been together for FOUR YEARS. I never gave him any indication a stone statue would be something I was interested in, so…so like what the heck was he thinking?”
He Did Leave Her A Ring
“The worst gift I’ve ever received was finding out that my boyfriend of 6 years has cheated on me, instead of being a man and ending it with me before he started with someone else.
Anyway, on Valentine’s Day, he pulled out the engagement ring he had bought for me and said, ‘Here, you should have this as a consolation for all the things you’ve done for me.’
I still haven’t looked at it.”
“Then She Discovered Wish.com”
“My girlfriend is a terrible gift giver, 80% of the time. On almost every occasion, she has given me something handmade, which I actually enjoy, or some god awful knick knack. Some of them have slight use, others not so much.
Then she discovered Wish.com…
I’ve never owned so much useless crap in my life. A glasses repairing kit? Don’t wear glasses, but yep, have one.
A laser pointer key chain in the shape of a bullet? I would be removed from my place of work if someone saw that.
A portable fork and spoon kit? Yeah, that’s pretty useful, except they’re shaped in a way where you would be better off eating soup with chopsticks.
Maybe She Dreamed Of Being An Elvis Impersonator
“My first ‘real’ relationship began when I was sixteen years old. It lasted for two and a half years, which I’ve been told is fairly impressive for a couple in high school. Truth be told, that span of time is most notable when you consider the fact that the young woman and I were almost completely incompatible and that was never more evident than when she tried to give me gifts.
During our first Valentine’s together, my then-girlfriend gave me a pair of hand weights, like the sort that might be held by a jogger wearing leggings. They had clearly been purchased from the bargain bin at the local thrift store, but I told myself it was the thought that mattered, even if I wasn’t sure that any thought had gone into the gift at all. Besides, we had only been dating for about three months, and it was probably unfair of me to expect anything at all.
Unfortunately, that would set the stage for every gift I’d receive from the girl.
I need to pause for a moment and explain something about this young woman. Although she was ambitious and talented, she had almost zero patience for practice or preparation. Her idea of putting on a poetry performance, for example, was to get up on stage and improvise while using a tone of voice that made it sound like she was reciting something. That would have been fine, except for the fact that she was really bad at improvisation, and she had a tendency to lie about how much work she’d done on something.
Please keep that in mind when I tell you this:
For my eighteenth birthday, this young woman – who was also, I should mention, completely tone-deaf – forced me to sit in a plastic folding chair for as long as it took her to ‘sing’ her way through three love songs by Elvis Presley. I hated Elvis at the time, and watching this girl attempt (and fail) to mumble her way through ‘Love Me Tender’ was as close to torture as I’d been through.
Worse still, I had to sit back and pretend that I enjoyed it because, as she’d told me, she’d worked really hard on it.”
Dual Gifting – Get To Work!
“One year for my birthday in college, my boyfriend gave me…a shovel…because I like to…dig? I guess? What made it even more touching is that my birthday is also Valentine’s Day.”
The Oatmeal Cleanser Sounds Nice
“From my girlfriend for Valentine’s day:
Two heart-shaped brownies, a half-used bottle of oatmeal facial cleanser, and a hastily scrawled ‘card’ on notepad paper with her company’s logo on it.
I got her a custom picked box of truffles, flowers delivered to her work, and a $50 Body Shop gift card.
She sure won that one.
Oh, and I’m the youngest of three brothers. I was my parents’ last try for a girl. Until I was about 20, my mom routinely got me very feminine gifts. One time when they came back from vacation she got me a purple sweatshirt with cutesy white, puffy writing on the front. My brother laughed his tail off and said, ‘If he wears that to school, he’s definitely getting his butt kicked.'”
It Was The Gift She Never Got
“I had been dating this guy and it got hot and heavy really quickly. We were living together while he was home from college. He hadn’t been working and therefore had no money, but swore up and down that he would get me something nice when he was working again. Okay, no biggie. He didn’t have to promise me anything at all, but he did.
We had talked about a budget early on, and agreed on a number. A couple of weeks later, we were at a jewelry store and I found a ring that I loved. We talked about it being a promise ring, etc… Shortly after, he told me that there was no way he could get the ring because he just didn’t have the money. I offered to look at something cheaper, and he said no, nothing was in the budget anymore. I was super disappointed. Not about not getting a gift, but that he didn’t keep a promise that he had made. Over the summer, our relationship unraveled for several different reasons. We broke up, and stopped living together.
We chatted back and forth for a while, but just couldn’t work things out. I cut contact in October.
The following January, reached out to him again to try and be friends. It was then that he revealed that he had bought me that ring that I had wanted so badly AFTER we broke up. He basically said that he had got it as a reward for me if I had gotten back together with him. Needless to say, I hadn’t, and I didn’t.
Recently, I saw a very similar ring while I was away on vacation. I toyed with the idea of buying it for myself, because I love the design so much. Ultimately, I decided I don’t need to wear a reminder of that crazy prick all the time and the ring stayed in the case.”
Big Dummy Tries And Fails
“I consistently asked my boyfriend to surprise me once in a while or just get me flowers because I was getting tired of being taken for granted and I was trying to help lead him in the right direction, ya know a girl wants to be surprised or just treated well sometimes.
So one day he tells me he’s going to the store and it was February, close to Valentine’s Day, so I was thinking maybe he was going to get me a gift or some flowers or chocolate, you know the usual Valentine’s Day things. He comes home all excited with a smile on his face, saying he got me something. I’m baffled, hope and excitement streaming from head to toe. This is the first time I’ve ever gotten a gift from a boyfriend and I couldn’t contain myself. He hands me the bag and tells me to open it. I rip it open like a Christmas present only to find a bottle of lotion… specifically for men.
It looked like a generic Walmart lotion, and had no special scent or ‘flavor’ to it. It was literally the most basic form of lotion you can find. It was thicker than bowl of oatmeal and smelled like an old person’s home. I wasn’t sure what to think. On one hand, I thought maybe he really did try and was just oblivious or on the other hand he bought it thinking, ‘This’ll shut the chick up.’
I looked him in the eyes and said thank you because he did get me a gift like I wanted, but I really didn’t think there was much of a future between us after that because I was always getting him gifts, cooking dinner, or what have you.”
He’s not a bad guy, just kind of dumb.”
“My boyfriend kept going on about how much I was going to LOVE the present he got me and from the hints I got excited that it was jewelry. It wasn’t.
It was a silver Rollo.
Like the chocolate, but made of silver, apparently. There was an old advert where the phrase was ‘love them enough to give them your last Rollo.’
I’d never seen it and didn’t like Rollo’s, which he knew. He also had it engraved ‘to (my name) love Matt X. I’d never called him Matt ever, it was always ‘Matthew.’
He said it was so he’d have room for the X.
Not the worst, but totally useless.”
A Creepy Blanket As A Gift
“A few years ago, an ex and her mom bought me the worst gift I’ve ever received.
I remember them both being so excited they had to open it for me, and then display it.
They had bought me a large custom made blanket with a high definition image of them and some extended family on it, including her bipolar uncle, the uncle’s dog, which had died a year earlier, a cousin I had met maybe three times, and my ex’s sister’s boyfriend who was an abusive addict.
I broke up with her about a month later for mostly unrelated reasons.”