Buying for Your Significant Other: How to Beat the Stress
NEW YORK ( MainStreet) The winter holidays, despite the tidings of comfort and joy, are full of stress when it comes to presents. People start discussing their own wants and needs while also jotting down gift ideas for the special people in their life. If you're buying for your significant other, there's a good chance that you're in need of some help with choosing gifts for your other half.
Men, your leading lady casually mentioned that she loved that opal ring in the window of the jewelry store, but, after dating for a year, do you get her a ring that isn't THE ring? And ladiesyou might want him to shave off his remaining scruff from "Movember"do you give him the luxury shave kit? Or do you get him the pinball machine that he really wants (but that you secretly think is idiotic)? How much should you spend? Should you discuss a price point beforehand, or is that awkward?
There are a lot of questions that come along with gift-buying, and we caught up with a few experts to help with sorting out the answers.
Before you throw your blank shopping list across the room, you first need to realize that your gift choices should be determined on the nature of your own personal relationship with your significant other. If discussing anything money-related with your other half is the rough equivalent to discussing politics during Sunday dinner, then maybe discussing a price point beforehand is not for you.
Yet if the two of you are fairly open about your financials and you want to eliminate some of the "what if I spend less (or more?" stress and awkwardness, then discussing a price point is a good beginner.
Stefanie Safran, owner of the Chicago-based dating service Stef and the City , says that setting a price point for gifts is acceptable, depending on which stage in the relationship you are. If you've been dating a few months already, it's O.K. to discuss a price point in order to eliminate the unnecessary stress. However, if your relationship is more on the new side, you should get something small and save the more expensive gifts for later on. Interestingly enough, Safran also says that it's not mandatory to get equally priced gifts.
"You do not have to spend the same amount," she said. "If someone ends up spending more, it is not the end of the world. Just be sure to appropriately express your appreciation, because no matter what it is, they probably put some thought into it."
Showing gratitude goes a long way, and the joy you both share over the gifts is the true meaning behind the holidays.
Spending different amounts on each other can also be acceptable if the salaries of the two people are drastically different, according to April Masini, relationship expert and the face behind the advice forum AskApril.com.