In my house we have a ‘donate‘ bin and a ‘gift‘ bin. In the donate bin we put items that we no longer need/use and that we want to pass along to someone else who could use them, but many times these items are not in perfect condition. In the gift bin we put items we have received as gifts from others that we won’t use ourselves, items we purchased but didn’t use and are new, ‘like new’ items we want to go to a good home.
When people give you a gift of any kind (birthday, celebration, in their will, etc.) their intention is for you to enjoy that gift. They did not intend to burden you with something you feel like you have to keep but don’t like or won’t use. But the guilt often overtakes people and they feel the need to keep it so they just store it away somewhere. This is where I think re-gifting can be a great solution. You may not want that necklace your grandma left you, but maybe your friend’s daughter would love it and her birthday is coming up. There is no reason you can’t give the necklace to her. You don’t have to tell her it is a re-gift, and you don’t need to feel weird about it. You can’t use it- she will love it- you needed a gift for her- you had one- problem solved.
Recently I found out my neighbors had a baby girl. I don’t know them very well (they just moved in a few months ago) but wanted to give them a gift. So I went to my ‘gift’ bin and found a super cute pink, teddy bear beanie baby and a few books. All of which my daughter had received as gifts but didn’t want. They were never used, and rather than just donate them I chose to re-gift them. The fact that I didn’t actually go to the store and purchase them doesn’t lessen the thought behind the gift. I still chose the items with love and thoughtfulness for the family and the child.
I have a friend who gives books she has already read or re-gifts items and tells you straight out. Does that make me like the item any less? NO- I am still grateful she took the time to give me something she thought I would like.
How do you feel about re-gifting? Good, bad, weird, hadn’t really thought about it? I would love to hear from you if you think it is a great solution or socially incorrect.