About gift giving. Since our forty-something son is bringing his same-sex partner to our Christmas dinner (of eighteen total), we wouldn’t be surprised if they announced that they’re getting married. That’s what his sister thinks.
As we’re retired, we give only a small gift to everyone attending, such as a pair of socks. We give one check to his sister and her husband, because we know full well the financial constraints of pleasing young children at Christmas.
What should we do about a gift for this unexpected guest?
–Anonymous, Worcester, MA
Gift giving can be tricky in the most familiar of circumstances. Even if you have a refitting drawer, socks and ties are never a good idea unless you know someone’s style.
Best to keep it sweet. Brownies nicely wrapped in a bright red bow, or a loaf of pumpkin, or orange-cranberry, bread would be fitting for the season.
Even if your son’s partner brings you and your husband his own gifts, you are not required to give him anything personal such as an article of clothing. But fresh baked goods are a gift the two men can share as a couple at home.
Better still, don’t bring up marriage, engagement, nuptials or anything wedding related. When they are ready to let you know their plans, they’ll tell you their plans.
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Accepting A Compliment