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busymama7

I feel like a brat...(gift giving)

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This is JAWM

 

You know that love language thing? Mine is gifts. I kinda hate that it is because it makes me feel like I'm self centered or something but I am accepting about it.

 

The problem is my husband is a terrible gift giver. I mean I have gotten big ticket items that have been awesome(camera, kindle etc) but when the budget is tight and we are just doing little things (like this year) then he just doesn't know what to do. Ok so no problem, I can send lists of ideas and I do. But I want things that can't be bought at walmart on dec 24th and so that actually doesn't work out for him. I start shopping in November and buy special well thought out gifts, 95% online; because I can get better choices that way. And he waits until a day or two before and I end up with a hairbrush (true story).

 

This is NOT about the $ spent at all. The item I really wanted this year was under $20 even with shipping. But it takes forsight and doing it ahead of time which he is really bad at. My adult daughter just let it slip out that he didn't order it. I feel like crying. I'm on the edge actually. I would have felt like he cared and paid attention to what is important to me if he had gotten it.

 

Ive spent lots of time and energy creating gifts for him this season that wouldn't cost much but he would love. And he just can't ever think of anything on his own.

 

I have bought my own gifts before and while I get what I want I really hate that. It's no fun. I just want to know that he cares about me enough to think about me and do something thoughtful and sweet. We have 9 kids and extended family to shop for. I've done it all, including his side. I've made pajamas for everyone. I've baked. I've created gifts for the neighbors so we can carol to them (something that is critical for him to feel like it's Christmas). I've done 100% of the decorating and shopping and wrapping and cleaning etc. he works a lot and so these things naturally fall to me and that's ok. But I'm tired of not feeling love given back to me. I'm tired of an empty stocking (or one I filled myself). Literally. I think stockings are so much fun and have actually reminded him to fill mine with marginal success.

 

Yes I have expressed these feelings to him many times over the years. He's not uncaring just has horrible time management skills (not only in this area) and doesn't understand why it's doesn't mean as much to me to have him pick up any old thing at walmart instead of putting thought and time and a tiny bit of effort into it.

 

Yeah I know, i sound bratty. It's better here than at him.

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Girl, I GET it! I really do! I also have the gift of giving so I truly get it. We LOVE to give! But the way we feel loved

is when others GIVE to us. We feel loved when they've put thought and effort into what will be meaningful to us.

DH and I have been married almost 22 years and it has taken him a LONNNNGGGG time to figure out that shopping at

Big Lots on December 23rd is not going to cut it. I don't really have a solution for you except to say that if you PM me I'd 

be glad to send you some stocking stuffers for you. And to tell you that I really do understand!

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It doesn't sound bratty at all.

Your language is giving and that means you interpret love (on some level) with what is given. I don't think it necessarily has to do with gifts because, like you said, it isn't the lack of gift that bothers you -- it's that he didn't pay attention to what was important to you. 

 

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 I don't really have a solution for you except to say that if you PM me I'd 

be glad to send you some stocking stuffers for you. And to tell you that I really do understand!

 

That is so sweet!

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I disagree, I don't think you sound bratty at all, I actually feel exactly the same way you except I don't get anything. I'm so sorry maybe he'll surprise you and have just what you want under the tree.

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I think you and I may share a husband.

I finally gave up and started buying my own gifts...but I still feel a bit let down. Especially years like this one, where I bought him a meaningful gift. And considering I do 100% of everything around here, for his family, too.

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Doesn't sound bratty at all. My love language is not through gifts so I generally don't like exchanging gifts. But dh does so when I mentioned not exchanging this year I knew he was disappointed so I said OK we can but you set the price limit. I do not spend money on myself all year long so if I'm forced into exchanging gifts with dh I want to get things I actually want or need. This year he got me a Keurig (I know because my 3 year old told me.) I hate Keurigs! We needed a new coffeemaker so it was a nice attempt but I know I've mentioned a million times my hate for kuerigs and how when we get a new coffeemaker it needs to be one with an insulated carafe. Well that never sunk in apparently so I'm stuck with a coffee maker I hate and he went over the agreed upon budget.

 

I'm really not looking forward to opening my gift. I'm pregnant and super emotional so I know I'll cry and make him feel bad. I also hate it because he went on this long rant of his relatives always asking for a list from him when he has an Amazon wish list( they use my amazon wish list to get ideas for me and the kids.) He just couldn't understand why they'd look at my wish list but not his. All I wanted to do was scream at him that he's bitching to someone who wishes her darn dh would look at her wish list and stop trying to surprise her because he always falls short.

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Buying gifts for people whose love language is gifts is really hard if you aren't wired that way!

 

I'm sorry you are dealing with this. I don't think you are bratty at all.

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You are not a brat.  My love language isn't even gifts.  But I have still had to watch the kids on Dec 23rd while my husband goes out and tries to get me something at the last minute and that makes me so mad!  Seriously....I'd rather you help with the kids than go buy my some plastic kitchen utensils I don't need or want!

 

We have had arguments over gifts (like I specifically told him not to get me an item and he gets it) or other issues where I have specifically told him what to buy/not buy and he doesn't comply.  Makes me crazy because to me he won't even listen to me!!

 

So...my love language isn't even gifts and I get it.  If my love language was gifts I would be so hurt for sure.  Sorry!

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It was my kids, as teens, who finally noticed that mom's stocking was usually empty aside from an orange and a few token peppermints I stuck in there so it wouldn't be totally void. Since they noticed, they always sneak in some treats. It's sweet.

 

My dh is like yours, a gift-giver-fail. Since gift giving is not my love language (mostly because I dislike OBLIGATORY gift giving), we are happy with this arrangement: we determine a dollar amount, and each purchase gifts to ourselves from the spouse to wrap and set under the tree. Our Christmas surprise is finding out what we "got" each other. This keeps the kids happy, seeing that we exchange gifts; there were a few years there that there weren't any presents for mom to go along with that anemic stocking.

 

I would not be happy with this arrangement at any other time than Christmas, though. Christmas is so stress producing as it is, I don't care, but I wouldn't like a birthday or anniversary to be totally neglected.

 

OP, are you getting anything for your husband? Maybe he needs a lump of coal....jk. Maybe.

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 This year he got me a Keurig (I know because my 3 year old told me.) I hate Keurigs! We needed a new coffeemaker so it was a nice attempt but I know I've mentioned a million times my hate for kuerigs and how when we get a new coffeemaker it needs to be one with an insulated carafe. Well that never sunk in apparently so I'm stuck with a coffee maker I hate and he went over the agreed upon budget.

 

 

This may not be any consolation, but my dh surprised me with a Keurig - knowing full well that I didn't want one - about four years ago. I was not impressed. 

 

But, I grew to love it and now I'm really happy that I have it. 

 

Maybe you'll eventually like yours, too. 

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My husband is amazing at gift-giving.  I am not.  I struggle every year.  This year I even managed to disappoint him by thinking I was buying one thing he really wanted and well, it was not.  Ugh.

 

What *has* helped over the years is having a word doc on my computer from dh.  He started it many years ago and listed some items/brands/categories of things he would enjoy.  Not because he's picky, but because I don't always see the obvious.  I add to it now when he expresses interest in something but having that starter list was absolutely fantastic.  I could still surprise him and (usually) know it's something he's going to enjoy.

 

*hugs*  I can only imagine he feels like you do some years.

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Nope, not bratty at all! It's your love language so it means more to you than it otherwise might. 

 

I agree with the PP who said it's hard to give to someone whose LL is gifts. That's my hubby, and it's super hard to find just the right thing--but oh so worth it.

 

 

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This may not be any consolation, but my dh surprised me with a Keurig - knowing full well that I didn't want one - about four years ago. I was not impressed.

 

But, I grew to love it and now I'm really happy that I have it.

 

Maybe you'll eventually like yours, too.

Let hope so. But I have a lot of experience with it since I use one at least twice a week at my parents' house. I'm trying very hard to be OK with it and to view it as the thoughtful gift he means it to be. I've already decided I'm taking an extra chunk of our tax refund to spend on myself to make up for it.

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You don't sound bratty at all. I totally agree with you. The last time dh and I decided to do Christmas gifts, we set a $25 budget. I spent so much time trying to find things at a good price to fill up every bit of that $25 for his gift. He bought me a damn $5 jar of gourmet pickles. Seriously. We laugh about it now, but I made sure right then and there that that was the last jar of pickles he was to ever buy me, lol. Now I buy whatever I want and he gladly just pays the bill. He's a wonderful hubby and father, but he does lack gift giving abilities sometimes. Gifting is my love language, too. I think it's sometimes hard for him to get that. (((Hugs)))

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I could have written your post. I love giving and receiving gifts. I take care of all birthdays and Christmas for both sides of the family. He does nothing. Most years, I get no gifts from him. Christmas, birthday, Mother's day, anniversary... I wouldn't mind if he skipped my birthday but always got me a Christmas gift.. or something like that. If I didn't buy his parents gifts, they wouldn't get anything.

 

Every now and then he'll randomly get me something really nice.

 

I'm prepared for not getting anything from him on Sunday. I usually go on an ill advised shopping spree to console myself after Christmas, and again after my birthday. But you're right that it's not the same as knowing he cared enough to pick something out that he thought I'd like. Money isn't even tight this year and I have an Amazon wish list and everything. It literally requires him to get online, click a few times, and get one of my kids to wrap the gift for him. :p

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Agree with everyone else...you are not being bratty.

 

It took a therapist telling my dh things that I've said for 20+ years for him to really listen and understand that he needed to put more effort into a few things (not gift giving...but it could have just as easily been that). And it took "marriage counselling costs less than a divorce" to get him to the therapist.  :svengo: Seriously, WHY does it take so much :smash:  to get something through someone's head?! It's the thought that counts...right? So if there's no thought.... :cursing:

 

Anyway,  :grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug: . I get you.

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I don't think you are a brat.

 

I do just want to share, as a not gifts love language person, that it is much harder for him to do than you might think.  It is really hard to "keep your head in the game" about a love language that you don't share at all with another person.  Gift giving to gift love language people makes me totally anxious.  First, I don't think about it until it's late--even if I set an Amazon reminder. Then I sweat trying to come up with something.  Then it feels lame because great gift ideas only rarely (seriously once every 2 years or so) occur to me.  But none of that has anything to do with how much I love the person and knowing that I am blowing it just makes me feel worse and worse and want the whole thing to go away.  I really need excellent wish lists.

 

Now the not looking at wish list thing I don't understand. Also, the stocking thing.  But could he ask your oldest to fill the stocking? Do you do very complicated stockings? Are they huge?  We only do gingerbread cookies, chocolate, oranges and candy canes.  I would probably be lost otherwise.  could you make a list of great stocking stuffers?

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My dad wasn't the best gift giver. So as we, the children, got older, he deputized us to be his helpers and let him know what mom might want. I, the youngest, took the job very seriously. I listened and watched and then my dad and I went shopping and got mom gifts she would like. I then wrapped them for him so they would look decent.

 

I like picking out gifts for people - but I prefer non-standard gift-giving times. Getting all those gifts for people at Christmas - argh.

 

I hope you do get a wonderful surprise. 

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You have NINE kids. WHY hasn't your husband drafted an elf that can keep a secret. It's win-win. He gets an organized kid to manage the details and he gets a happy wife. I started getting exactly what I wanted once my daughter was about ten. She just remembers when I comment on something and has the "gift gene" that DH and I didn't get. I'm not a gift person at all, but I quickly learned that telling dd what I liked made life easier for everyone. My love language is please-don't-make-me-shop, so I never know what to get DH. He ends up with clothes :-/ I haven't bought any yet :-/ I'm paralyzed with denial.

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My love language is gifts too - anything from dates to surprises to household purchases. I love being surprised with just the right gift. And yet my husband, though a thoughtful person, has a hard time figuring out what I want without a specific link.

 

So I send him specific links, and drop occasional hints for other things, and just prepare to buy most of what I want myself. It's obnoxious but I know he tries. He's great in so many other areas, including other types of gifts like bullring me household projects. So I let him serve me in the way that meshes with his skills and Amazon supplements the rest :lol:

 

I hear you.

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My love language is gifts too - anything from dates to surprises to household purchases. I love being surprised with just the right gift. And yet my husband, though a thoughtful person, has a hard time figuring out what I want without a specific link.

 

So I send him specific links, and drop occasional hints for other things, and just prepare to buy most of what I want myself. It's obnoxious but I know he tries. He's great in so many other areas, including other types of gifts like bullring me household projects. So I let him serve me in the way that meshes with his skills and Amazon supplements the rest :lol:

 

I hear you.

My DS keeps a Pinterest board for his wishlists so all I have to do is click and it's linked to amazon (or whatever). It's brilliant. He keeps it updated so I don't have to worry about double buying because I NEVER remember which game is which.

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I can completely relate. I put so much time, thought and effort into choosing gifts for others it's not even funny; meanwhile a certain someone grabs whatever at the very last minute. He will ask what I want, and I feel like he doesn't even know me! If he just took the time to notice the things that I wear, he wouldn't even need to spend much to come up with something thoughtful.  I bought extra at Bath and Body Works for last minute gifts to have on hand but I think I will keep a few for myself. 

 

:grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

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Not bratty at all.  I too love giving gifts.

 

We have been married 22 years and have always bought all the gifts for all family members.  I do try to get dh's input but most of the time the answer is "I don't know". 

My stocking is either filled by me or not filled.

 

For years my gift was bought by me and wrapped by me.  Yes I gave hints or down right said "hey I want that"

 

Then a few years ago dc wanted dad to take them shopping for me.  They didn't want dad to "pick up" my gift and bring home for them to wrap (me buy my gift and hand to him like he had been shopping).  Dh agreed but I had to tell him exactly what I wanted and then when he got home he told me what they bought. 

 

As dc got older they started really paying attention to things I looked at or mentioned liking.  So when dh would take them shopping I knew they had some ideas.  Dh would still ask me what I wanted and I would tell him then say "they know, they were watching"

 

Dh just doesn't pay attention. It just doesn't register (no matter how many times I have said it). I would like him to fill my stocking.

 

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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy."  I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

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Girl, I GET it! I really do! I also have the gift of giving so I truly get it. We LOVE to give! But the way we feel loved

is when others GIVE to us. We feel loved when they've put thought and effort into what will be meaningful to us.

DH and I have been married almost 22 years and it has taken him a LONNNNGGGG time to figure out that shopping at

Big Lots on December 23rd is not going to cut it. I don't really have a solution for you except to say that if you PM me I'd

be glad to send you some stocking stuffers for you. And to tell you that I really do understand!

Awe you are a so sweet. I'm afraid that wouldn't go over very well here. And he does mean well so I don't want to stir things up by pointing out how much it bothers me (again). I will remind him again next October or November :)

 

I'm also considering asking him if it will bug him if my 18 year old daughter fills my stocking. We are new to having adult children and he hasn't wanted them to participate in the Santa activities at our house up to now. But maybe he won't care. But options are limited at this point as well since we don't have nearby shopping aside from target But yeah I'm going to see if it would bug him.

 

I also decided after being validated on this thread (thank you all!) that I have not done a good job teaching my older kids how to be good gift givers. We are going to have a talk about it tomorrow and I will be having them choose gifts for their father and I carefully (but quickly 😂). In the past I've shopped for their dad and let them pick from my pile to give to him. Yeah, I'm not modeling what I want them to learn and I have four days to fix it.

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You have NINE kids. WHY hasn't your husband drafted an elf that can keep a secret. It's win-win. He gets an organized kid to manage the details and he gets a happy wife. I started getting exactly what I wanted once my daughter was about ten. She just remembers when I comment on something and has the "gift gene" that DH and I didn't get. I'm not a gift person at all, but I quickly learned that telling dd what I liked made life easier for everyone. My love language is please-don't-make-me-shop, so I never know what to get DH. He ends up with clothes :-/ I haven't bought any yet :-/ I'm paralyzed with denial.

The item I really really wanted I sent the link to my daughter. She has the ability to do it for herself and her dad would have paid her back (she's in college). But she didn't do it either. Sigh. See my previous post about realizing that I need to teach and work with them before it is too late.

 

He does tend to take them shopping and try to get them to choose stuff but again he's waiting until the last second and so it's really not the stuff I want.

 

Funny story I was told this year. He sat the kids down and asked them what I wanted. They had no idea. He said she's your mother, you should know her well enough to know how to buy a gift for her. My smart aleck oldest (19, our of state on a mission ATM) said she's your wife. Why are you coming to us for ideas? 😂😂😂. Apparently this happened 3-4 years ago.

Edited by busymama7
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Awe you are a so sweet. I'm afraid that wouldn't go over very well here. And he does mean well so I don't want to stir things up by pointing out how much it bothers me (again). I will remind him again next October or November :)

 

I'm also considering asking him if it will bug him if my 18 year old daughter fills my stocking. We are new to having adult children and he hasn't wanted them to participate in the Santa activities at our house up to now. But maybe he won't care. But options are limited at this point as well since we don't have nearby shopping aside from target But yeah I'm going to see if it would bug him.

 

I also decided after being validated on this thread (thank you all!) that I have not done a good job teaching my older kids how to be good gift givers. We are going to have a talk about it tomorrow and I will be having them choose gifts for their father and I carefully (but quickly 😂). In the past I've shopped for their dad and let them pick from my pile to give to him. Yeah, I'm not modeling what I want them to learn and I have four days to fix it.

I wouldn't worry too much about trying to "fix it" for this year. Just try to relax and have fun as much as you can! Christmas should be fun, not stressful. Go shopping. Let kids pick from what you've already got. Whatever works.  Just remember that learning is a process not an end result, so relax.  :grouphug:

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Funny story I was told this year. He sat the kids down and asked them what I wanted. They had no idea. He said she's your mother, you should know her well enough to know how to buy a gift for her. My smart aleck oldest (19, our of state on a mission ATM) said she's your wife. Why are you coming to us for ideas? 😂😂😂. Apparently this happened 3-4 years ago.

:lol: Your smart aleck sounds just like my smart aleck. I can envision my 14 year old saying the exact same thing.

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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy." I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

I do hear what you are saying. And it's not like I won't be happy with my life if he doesnt give me good gifts. But it does hurt especially since I put so much effort into gifts for him.

 

For me, it hasn't been ridiculous. It's made me understand myself more so I get why it's hurtful. It doesn't change his behavior but it makes me feel better that I'm not just some materialistic gimme gimme person. I just want to be thought of. Knowing my husbands language is physical touch helps me to know not to allow that side of our relationship get neglected.

Edited by busymama7
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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy." I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

Oh how wrong this statement is. Knowing each other's love language (and caring enough to "speak" it to each other) has absolutely made mine and DH's marriage better.

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I wouldn't worry too much about trying to "fix it" for this year. Just try to relax and have fun as much as you can! Christmas should be fun, not stressful. Go shopping. Let kids pick from what you've already got. Whatever works. Just remember that learning is a process not an end result, so relax. :grouphug:

You are right but I think it's a good lesson for them. We are 100% ready otherwise so we do have time.

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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy." I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

I agree

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:grouphug:

 

I think he'd really benefit from a shopping helper. My dad used to wait til Dec. 24 to shop for Mom. He'd take one of us (three daughters) sometimes to help. It wasn't the best plan in the world to wait so late, but I thought the fact that he had an idea and asked for help was good. I'm not sure how to go about doing it, but I do think a little birdie in your family needs to tell Dad when to hit "order now" or something.

 

Last year I was so irritated I did all the shopping/wrapping for almost everyone at one home and during the unwrapping of gifts my dad realized he didn't wrap my son's gift. An item he picked out with me helping over his shoulder at the computer. If he needed me to wrap it I would have, but he didn't ask so I figured he had it ready. So during that we had to scramble down the hall with a bag and toss it in. It's kind of funny in a way, but it wasn't at the time. All this to say I get being a little irritated with people and gifts.

 

You really deserve a pat on the back for all your work. I hope people take the time to say thank you. 

 

I don't know if it makes sense but I don't think receiving gifts is my love language but I enjoy buying/giving gifts.

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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy."  I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

 

Interesting. I hate "love languages" because I feel it becomes a reason for others to not do something. 

"That's not my love language; it just doesn't come naturally to me. You just need to accept that."

"I know that's not his love language, so I will just excuse his lack of meeting my needs." 

It's an enabler of poor behavior.

 

I suppose it's a bit of a sore spot for me, so I will bow out with this:

As a mother and a wife, I have a responsibility to meet certain needs of my kids and my husband...and that includes their emotional needs. I have have had to force myself to do things that I wouldn't naturally do because that is what they needed. I'm an adult, a parent and a wife. I may have to work harder, but I don't get a pass because it doesn't come naturally to me.

 

Why would I not expect the same from my dh? He's an adult, a father and a husband. Part of taking on that role means that he needs to learn to meet his wife's needs...and yes, that includes my emotional needs. He doesn't get a pass because it doesn't come naturally to him.

 

There are ways to learn. There are ways to cope. This is the age of information. There's probably an app for it.

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I am so sorry, and I don't think you sound bratty at all. I do think that men in general struggle with seeing beyond their own point of view and experience to really understand that other people have completely valid feelings and perspectives that are different from theirs. As a person who could hardly care less about gifts (not at all my love language, dh has never once bought me a Christmas present and that has never bothered me) I get what is going on in his head--this is just not a thing that has any significance to him.

 

BUT he badly needs to learn that it has very real significance to you and that he needs to look past the "not important" sense in his own head and serve the very real woman with individual personality and needs that he is married to.

Edited by maize
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He's not uncaring just has horrible time management skills (not only in this area) and doesn't understand why it's doesn't mean as much to me to have him pick up any old thing at walmart instead of putting thought and time and a tiny bit of effort into it.

 

I'm sorry! I missed the JAWM part. I'll leave this here, because I wrote it in an attempt to be supportive, just in case you feel like you want to read a perspective from someone who is on the "other side of the fence." But you may feel entirely free to ignore it or skip reading it if that doesn't appeal.

 

I wish you a pleasant holiday and hope your family makes you feel as loved as you truly are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I absolutely hear the hurt and disappointment in your post, and I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. I don't think you sound "bratty" at all.

 

However, as the person on the other side of this equation in my own marriage, I have to say that, for those of us who are not "into" gifts as a love language, trying to live up to the hopes of a person who puts so much significance on gifting requires so much more than "a tiny bit of effort."

 

In my own case, I live in a constant state of low-level stress beginning in August, because my husband's birthday is in early September, followed by Christmas before I can even catch my breath and lick my wounds from yet another failure to give "a good gift." I definitely "understand" that this stuff matters to my husband, but that doesn't make me magically able to do it well.

 

We've known each other since elementary school and have been married for over 20 years. I've worked really hard to try and do well by him in this regard, especially once I realized how important it is to him. He, too, has sat me down and told me in no uncertain terms more than once that it is important and why. 

 

I care. I care so much that I am sometimes nearly paralyzed with indecision and denial and unable to cope with buying or making gifts for him until the absolutely last second, because I am so upset knowing that, no matter what I do, it will be wrong or not enough.

 

More often than I like to remember, I have ended up putting a collection of apparently random items under the tree, just so he has something to unwrap, knowing he will be sad and disappointed. There have been many years I have actually come to dread Christmas as a result.

 

I know he doesn't do this intentionally and that he does not mean to cause me pain any more than I intend to "neglect" him. He's just no better at hiding his reaction than I am at figuring out how to do this whole present thing in a way that makes him happy.

 

So, I don't know if it helps you at all to hear it, but it's entirely possible that your husband does understand and care and really, genuinely try. His failure may very well be no reflection at all of how he feels about you or how much he wants to please you; he's just not as good as this as you are.

Edited by Jenny in Florida
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Interesting. I hate "love languages" because I feel it becomes a reason for others to not do something.

 

"That's not my love language; it just doesn't come naturally to me. You just need to accept that."

 

"I know that's not his love language, so I will just excuse his lack of meeting my needs."

It's an enabler of poor behavior.

 

I suppose it's a bit of a sore spot for me, so I will bow out with this:

As a mother and a wife, I have a responsibility to meet certain needs of my kids and my husband...and that includes their emotional needs. I have have had to force myself to do things that I wouldn't naturally do because that is what they needed. I'm an adult, a parent and a wife. I may have to work harder, but I don't get a pass because it doesn't come naturally to me.

 

Why would I not expect the same from my dh? He's an adult, a father and a husband. Part of taking on that role means that he needs to learn to meet his wife's needs...and yes, that includes my emotional needs. He doesn't get a pass because it doesn't come naturally to him.

 

There are ways to learn. There are ways to cope. This is the age of information. There's probably an app for it.

And yet, it's the exact opposite. DH's love language is NOT natural to me or my preferred behavior, so knowing it is important *to him*, I can make an effort to act outside of my natural tendency to satisfy his need and make him feel loved. If I didn't know his language, how in the heck am I supposed to know how to meet his need for it?

 

It's not an enabler of poor behavior. It's not like we, as a human race, are great at self reflection or communication and can express why we are frustrated/distant/annoyed when some *unknown* (even to ourselves) need is not being met. Or why we tend (as a society) to "just grow apart" in our marriages. Once we've identified the needs, it's easier to express our wishes to have it met and for others to know how to meet it.

 

This is the age of information, and when used properly, this information regarding our "love languages" is incredibly valuable.

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I'm sorry! I missed the JAWM part. I'll leave this here, because I wrote it in an attempt to be supportive, just in case you feel like you want to read a perspective from someone who is on the "other side of the fence." But you may feel entirely free to ignore it or skip reading it if that doesn't appeal.

 

I wish you a pleasant holiday and hope your family makes you feel as loved as you truly are.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I absolutely hear the hurt and disappointment in your post, and I'm sorry you're having such a hard time. I don't think you sound "bratty" at all.

 

However, as the person on the other side of this equation in my own marriage, I have to say that, for those of us who are not "into" gifts as a love language, trying to live up to the hopes of a person who puts so much significance on gifting requires so much more than "a tiny bit of effort."

 

In my own case, I live in a constant state of low-level stress beginning in August, because my husband's birthday is in early September, followed by Christmas before I can even catch my breath and lick my wounds from yet another failure to give "a good gift." I definitely "understand" that this stuff matters to my husband, but that doesn't make me magically able to do it well.

 

We've known each other since elementary school and have been married for over 20 years. I've worked really hard to try and do well by him in this regard, especially once I realized how important it is to him. He, too, has sat me down and told me in no uncertain terms more than once that it is important and why.

 

I care. I care so much that I am sometimes nearly paralyzed with indecision and denial and unable to cope with buying or making gifts for him until the absolutely last second, because I am so upset knowing that, no matter what I do, it will be wrong or not enough.

 

More often than I like to remember, I have ended up putting a collection of apparently random items under the tree, just so he has something to unwrap, knowing he will be sad and disappointed. There have been many years I have actually come to dread Christmas as a result.

 

I know he doesn't do this intentionally and that he does not mean to cause me pain any more than I intend to "neglect" him. He's just no better at hiding his reaction than I am at figuring out how to do this whole present thing in a way that makes him happy.

 

So, I don't know if it helps you at all to hear it, but it's entirely possible that your husband does understand and care and really, genuinely try. His failure may very well be no reflection at all of how he feels about you or how much he wants to please you; he's just not as good as this as you are.

Thank you. I do know this is true. And it's actually why I'm half glad that it came out today so I can deal with my negative feelings before Christmas. I have tried really hard not too act or show disappointment especially because I know he cares and is trying in his own way. And I don't fault him for not coming up with things all on his own. It's actually gotten worse in the last 5-8 years as I've moved to all online shopping. I've discovered how easy it is to get great gifts this way but then even when I give him 10-20 ideas for me so I can still be surprised he still waits until it's too late to order anything.

 

I am glad I vented actually because I do feel better and I'm certain I will be able to relax and enjoy Christmas Day with whatever I get. I really had my heart set on this one item. I will drop hints for my birthday in mid January but more often then not it gets completely skipped anyways.

 

I hear what you are saying about the pressure and I will do what I can to relieve that pressure and not harp him about it. I saw your other thread and I think your stocking is amazing ;) merry Christmas

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And yet, it's the exact opposite. DH's love language is NOT natural to me or my preferred behavior, so knowing it is important *to him*, I can make an effort to act outside of my natural tendency to satisfy his need and make him feel loved. If I didn't know his language, how in the heck am I supposed to know how to meet his need for it?

 

It's not an enabler of poor behavior. It's not like we, as a human race, are great at self reflection or communication and can express why we are frustrated/distant/annoyed when some *unknown* (even to ourselves) need is not being met. Or why we tend (as a society) to "just grow apart" in our marriages. Once we've identified the needs, it's easier to express our wishes to have it met and for others to know how to meet it.

 

This is the age of information, and when used properly, this information regarding our "love languages" is incredibly valuable.

If I didn't understand how important touch was to my husband I would not be able to meet those needs of his. I need my space like crazy especially while I'm sleeping so being aware has made it so that I can compromise and focus on meeting his needs. I'm grateful to know how important it is to him.

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This is JAWM

 

You know that love language thing? Mine is gifts. I kinda hate that it is because it makes me feel like I'm self centered or something but I am accepting about it.

 

The problem is my husband is a terrible gift giver. I mean I have gotten big ticket items that have been awesome(camera, kindle etc) but when the budget is tight and we are just doing little things (like this year) then he just doesn't know what to do. Ok so no problem, I can send lists of ideas and I do. But I want things that can't be bought at walmart on dec 24th and so that actually doesn't work out for him. I start shopping in November and buy special well thought out gifts, 95% online; because I can get better choices that way. And he waits until a day or two before and I end up with a hairbrush (true story).

 

This is NOT about the $ spent at all. The item I really wanted this year was under $20 even with shipping. But it takes forsight and doing it ahead of time which he is really bad at. My adult daughter just let it slip out that he didn't order it. I feel like crying. I'm on the edge actually. I would have felt like he cared and paid attention to what is important to me if he had gotten it.

 

Ive spent lots of time and energy creating gifts for him this season that wouldn't cost much but he would love. And he just can't ever think of anything on his own.

 

I have bought my own gifts before and while I get what I want I really hate that. It's no fun. I just want to know that he cares about me enough to think about me and do something thoughtful and sweet. We have 9 kids and extended family to shop for. I've done it all, including his side. I've made pajamas for everyone. I've baked. I've created gifts for the neighbors so we can carol to them (something that is critical for him to feel like it's Christmas). I've done 100% of the decorating and shopping and wrapping and cleaning etc. he works a lot and so these things naturally fall to me and that's ok. But I'm tired of not feeling love given back to me. I'm tired of an empty stocking (or one I filled myself). Literally. I think stockings are so much fun and have actually reminded him to fill mine with marginal success.

 

Yes I have expressed these feelings to him many times over the years. He's not uncaring just has horrible time management skills (not only in this area) and doesn't understand why it's doesn't mean as much to me to have him pick up any old thing at walmart instead of putting thought and time and a tiny bit of effort into it.

 

Yeah I know, i sound bratty. It's better here than at him.

Sorry, I did not read the other posts.

 

But, I solved your delimma 20 years ago. I buy all presents in the house, including my own. I wrap them, including my own. I am happy on Christmas Day. The end.

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This is what I really hate about the ridiculous "love language" idea; it becomes a reason to define exactly what others need to do for us to be "happy." I see the JAWM, but I would be mindful of this kind of thinking. It's not going to make a marriage better.

It is not about making someone happy, it is about then feeling loved. If your spouse can't make you feel loved then of course it's not going to make a marriage better. Communicating what each individual needs to feel loved is key but the other part is the other person following through or attempting.

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This is JAWM

 

The problem is my husband is a terrible gift giver. I mean I have gotten big ticket items that have been awesome(camera, kindle etc) but when the budget is tight and we are just doing little things (like this year) then he just doesn't know what to do. Ok so no problem, I can send lists of ideas and I do. But I want things that can't be bought at walmart on dec 24th and so that actually doesn't work out for him. I start shopping in November and buy special well thought out gifts, 95% online; because I can get better choices that way. And he waits until a day or two before and I end up with a hairbrush (true story).

I totally get it, and gifts are NOT my love language. I basically don't care about gifts at all and I know that my wishes are quite particular, so in most cases, I would rather just buy the things I want myself. BUT, I totally hear you on the Walmart-at-the-last-minute thing, because this is what mine does as well. He has been curbed from it a little bit now that my daughter is a young adult and will tell him what to do. Last year, he did order me a La Crusette dish from Amazon because I basically demanded he do it in November, which does take 100% of the fun out of it. I was just recently thinking, while at Barnes and Nobel, "There are SO MANY gifts in here that I would be delighted to receive and if DH had ever in his life walked into a store like this with me, he would know that I love Ravensburger puzzles and the Harry Potter Wizard Chess set and the blanket throw with famous novel quotes on it." But he virtually never shops at all and probably hasn't been to a mall-type store in twenty years.

 

 

I have bought my own gifts before and while I get what I want I really hate that. It's no fun. I just want to know that he cares about me enough to think about me and do something thoughtful and sweet. We have 9 kids and extended family to shop for. I've done it all, including his side. I've made pajamas for everyone. I've baked. I've created gifts for the neighbors so we can carol to them (something that is critical for him to feel like it's Christmas). I've done 100% of the decorating and shopping and wrapping and cleaning etc. he works a lot and so these things naturally fall to me and that's ok. But I'm tired of not feeling love given back to me. I'm tired of an empty stocking (or one I filled myself). Literally. I think stockings are so much fun and have actually reminded him to fill mine with marginal success.

 

The bolded I have been thinking about too because it's the same here. One evening, he was teasing me about how I was "going out galavanting again" ummm...actually, I was buying boxes of chocolate for HIS business associates, to go with the business Christmas cards for HIS business, which I ordered custom imprinted back in November. I choose all the gifts for the kids, for his mother, for his family, I wrap them all. I am cooking and baking to host his family here on Christmas day. i have cleaned and decorated every day. So yeah. I think this, too. I feel like he has NO CLUE the investment or time and effort I go to to have and give to our families a very nice Christmas. And I do feel unappreciated - which actually IS my love language. Tell me I did an awesome job and I'll bend over backwards to do it again, lol.

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I do hear what you are saying. And it's not like I won't be happy with my life if he doesnt give me good gifts. But it does hurt especially since I put so much effort into gifts for him.

 

For me, it hasn't been ridiculous. It's made me understand myself more so I get why it's hurtful. It doesn't change his behavior but it makes me feel better that I'm not just some materialistic gimme gimme person. I just want to be thought of. Knowing my husbands language is physical touch helps me to know not to allow that side of our relationship get neglected.

 

I think redefining love languages might be in order here. :)  Does he use his language to show you how he cares?  It may not be what you're asking for, but if he's using his language it might be easier to accept.

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