Birthday gift ideas: Do’s and don’t’s for your sweetie

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My boyfriend’s birthday is this week and luckily I know exactly what to get him.

It helped that he told me what he wanted exactly 53 times in the past two months. But sometimes gift-giving requires more thought. I am a huge supporter of telling your boyfriend or girlfriend exactly what you want.

Why torture them?

I love surprises, but when it comes to gift giving I’d rather get something I know I want rather than a surprise that I don’t. So here are my best tips for giving a gift to your partner without getting punched in the face or crotch area.


Give any type of gift that you say is for her but is really for you. This includes but is not limited to: tickets to sporting events (unless she is a HUGE fan), movies you love that she hasn’t seen, action figures, video games/consoles, animals she has to care for, or anything else you want that she hasn’t ever mentioned.

Give anything that could be interpreted as an insult to their physical appearance. A woman or man might say they want to lose weight, or they want to join a gym, but this is not the type of gift you want to give unless you are actually trying to make them cry. Double goes for diet cookbooks, exercise equipment, makeup they wouldn’t normally wear, clothes that are too small as a “goal,” or gift certificates for laser hair removal.

Wait until the last minute. You might think that the Nintento 3DS or the new Harry Potter novel will just magically be sitting there waiting for you at Target, but more often than not, the popular items are sold out. Make sure you give yourself enough time to order online in case the item you want is unavailable the conventional way.


Put in as much effort as humanly possible. Even if you completely bomb out with your gift choice, they will appreciate your thoughtfulness. When all else fails, grab a gift card to their favorite store, and then make a homemade card or paint a picture frame to go along with it, just to show you care enough to spend time on it.

Get something even if your partner says they “don’t want anything.” Everyone could use or would appreciate something. Even if it’s a small gift or something utilitarian, pick it up just so they know you didn’t forget them. Hint to men: some women will use this as a “test” to see how well you know them. Do not fall for this! Games are stupid and only insecure people play them.

Make sure to buy something that will make your significant other feel special. This does not mean spending a ton of money on something gold or sparkly or unique. You can make someone feel special with a pair of socks, as long as they know you were thinking about them and give a shit about their feelings.

Of course, you don’t need to follow my rules. Actually, I would call them guidelines before I would say they are rules. You are the only person who can truly figure out what your partner will love. As long as you put time, effort and thought into it, I’m sure any gift would be much appreciated.

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