Most people agree that “It is better to give than to receive.” When we give presents to someone we care for, whether it is for a holiday, a birthday, a wedding, or another event, it elicits positive feelings and emotions for both the giver and the receiver.
However, when we choose the perfect gift, we should always consider the true meaning behind it.
Sadly, some people buy gifts for the sake of buying and can’t care less about choosing the perfect present for the person. Sadly, some presents are so horrible, they leave those who receive them in complete shock.
Below are some stories of people sharing the worst gifts they have ever received.
1. That’s Not My Wishlist!
u/P0werSurg3: My parents found the Amazon wishlist of someone with the same name as me but NOT me, thought it was a bunch of weird items, and decided NOT to check in with me or any other family member to see if they had the correct list. As a 24-year-old male, that’s how I got a maternity body pillow for Christmas.
2. The Beloved Dog
u/everyone1hatesme: My mother-in-law gave my 1-year-old daughter her dead dog’s bed as a Christmas present. She said it was for my daughter’s naps.
3. Gifts for the Couple
u/lunnrais: The very first holiday after my wedding, my MIL sent my wife and me, each separately, the same self-help book on how to survive living with an abusive spouse.
Not how to divorce or anything, but how to live IN the relationship with an abusive spouse. Not just to her, not just to me. To both of us. Two copies of the book.
4. Crockpots Every Year
u/sevensevensixseven: I received the same crockpot from my ex-husband’s mother three years in a row.
She gifted his new wife one last year. I’m confident this woman has a pallet of crockpots stashed somewhere in her house.
5. The Savage Present
u/[deleted]: The Christmas after my mum died, I got an alarm clock as my present. Her husband said it was so I ‘might wake up in the morning now and actually contribute something.’ Still salty eight years later. He’s dead now, though, so who is the real winner?
6. It’s Supposed to Be like That!
u/The_Brain_Fuckler: I got a rubber Hulk Hogan figurine (it looked like it was a Christmas ornament with the loop snipped off) glued to a very effeminate toy horse.
An elderly family friend gave it to me and wouldn’t stop mentioning how “they are supposed to look like that; that’s how it came from the store,” even though I didn’t voice any doubts. It’s also kind of the best gift I ever got.
7. Are You Afraid of Clowns?
u/mayonnaisejane: Clowns. Every year, a new clown. I tried to tell my Abuelito I don’t like clowns. They are weird.
I got a new clown figurine, doll, lamp, picture, or whatever every year for Christmas and birthday. I have BOXES of clowns.
Thankfully, sometime in my mid-twenties, my father managed to divert him to kittens. But that was only after four awkward years when he decided I loved cows. I don’t love cows, either.
On the bright side, since I kept them all on my dresser growing up, I was never afraid of clowns. They’re just background noise to me. I could probably walk into one in a dark alley and just be all, “Oh… it’s just one more clown.”
8. My Uncle’s Gift
u/ediaNS: My uncle gave me an Xbox Live points card for my birthday. When I went to redeem it, it said, “Card not activated.” This happened two years in a row until my mom told him about it.
9. Is That a Rock?
u/gennieb7: A few years ago, my aunt gave me a rock. She gave presents to me and my two older cousins and said it was time for the big girls to open their gifts.
She made my cousins go first, and they got scarves. When I opened my present and pulled a rock out of the package, I looked up, waiting for her to laugh.
Instead, she asked, “Isn’t it wonderful?” I said, “Yeah, I love it.” She told me she had dug it out of her garden the previous summer and said she knew I would think it was so cool.
The following year, she gave me acorn tops because “some people know how to use them to whistle, and I don’t know how to show you or explain, but I’m sure you can figure it out.” She is a tad eccentric. Both were pretty terrible presents.
10. One Pair of Socks
u/justatypo: The first year at family Christmas with my now-wife, her Nanna gifted me one pair of socks.
The best part was that it was one pair of sports socks you get in a pack of 10. So, she bought a pack and just wrapped one pair for me.
Of course, at the time, I wanted to act super grateful, so I pulled off my current socks super enthusiastically and put on the new ones as soon as I opened them. (I think my socks were actually a little damp from the winter anyway.)
11. The Missing Packages
u/I_am_paperclip: I had some excess cash when I got home from college. I decided to invest in some new video games for myself and had them sent to my house.
The strange thing was I had only received half of the games. I emailed the suppliers and told them I hadn’t gotten my packages yet and was growing quite sad.
Well, Christmas morning came around, and I was opening up my presents. I got to the one from my older brothers.
I tore the paper away and opened the box. Inside it were several other packages that had been mailed to our house with my name on them.
It turned out my brother had taken half of my games and hid them from me until Christmas… Worst present ever.
12. The Difference in Treatment
u/77jeep: One Christmas, my millionaire dad and his wife gifted my brother a house and a new Escalade for his family while they gave me a gift card to Men’s Warehouse for $200.
When he turned 40, they gave him $100,000. When I turned 40, they bought me dinner. They provided him with a ‘college fund’ of $250,000.00 for his kids.
When his kids dropped out of high school, they handed him the money to spend on cars, etc. Meanwhile, when my kids (straight A) graduated high school, my father and his wife told me that it was my responsibility to pay for my kids’ education.
Once, when I asked why there was such a difference in treatment, my dad told me I was being ungrateful.
13. You Should Be Grateful!
u/morgueanna: I was a step-grandchild, and my grandmother sold Avon to feed her QVC addiction. So, while the other six grandchildren got genuine leather jackets, diamond jewelry, motocross lessons, and, one year, an actual motocross bike, I got plastic Avon jewelry.
For reasons too long to list here, I got placed with my grandparents two weeks before Christmas when I was 16.
I watched everyone open their gifts, and then one aunt gave me a Walmart bag with some socks. Another one told me I should be grateful that the family was taking me in instead of leaving me on the street, and that was my present.
Seven aunts and uncles and their spouses, along with my grandparents, and that’s how they treated me in a situation that was out of my control. Needless to say, I don’t talk to my family anymore.
14. Some Bizarre Gifts
u/MizSanguine: My brother got a pocketknife wrapped like candy in a small cylinder package (an old toilet paper roll). Excited, I started unwrapping mine that looked similar.
Underwear. There was only underwear inside. And once a bathroom faucet. That is when I knew my childhood was over.
15. Resolidified Chocolate
u/SquatChick315: I got expired chocolate on Christmas from an aunt who loved gifting her old presents to others yet always expected expensive, top-notch gifts for her children on Christmas and birthdays.
Not only was the chocolate expired, but it was also evident that it had melted entirely and resolidified.
When I noticed, I went to her and said, “OMG! This chocolate is so good, you have to try it!” in front of the whole family.
I watched her unwrap a piece of chocolate, and when she noticed how it looked, she was hesitant to eat it.
When she looked at me, I just smiled and said, “It’s the best chocolate ever!” Then, I watched her slowly bring it to her mouth and try to eat it.
She quickly walked to the kitchen immediately afterward. I think I’ve only seen her once since that moment almost nine years ago.
16. The Book
u/hickory-smoked: My friend’s wife gave me a copy of “A Night Without Armor,” the book of poetry by Jewel. Not that I actively dislike Jewel or anything, but it was so clearly something she saw on a discount gift rack the day of my birthday and said, “Yes, this is an object.”
17. The Cool Ball
u/BloodChicken: The only present I got for Christmas was a little light-up ball. You put your finger on the two metal tabs, or you and someone else while holding the other hands, and the ball lights up.
It wasn’t awful, but it was underwhelming. After I figured out what it was and how it worked and tried it with a few people, Dad asked me if he could try, so I said sure.
I passed him the ball, and he immediately threw it on the ground hard enough to break it. “I thought it was a bouncy ball!” he said.
18. That’s My Gameboy!
u/tall_where_it_counts: When I was about 12 years old, I mowed lawns to earn some money for myself, and I spent many months saving up to buy a Gameboy Advance.
I loved this thing and played it incessantly for hours every day. Two months later, on my little brother’s birthday, my parents bought him a Gameboy Advance game, just the game cartridge. He didn’t have a Gameboy.
I was frustrated because I was forced to share my Gameboy with him, and when I was visibly salty about it, my parents told me to stop being selfish.
It’s not that I didn’t want to share with my brother, but it was unfair that they bought him a gift he could not use without borrowing my prized possession. When I expressed my annoyance, they made me feel guilty about it.
19. Taxidermy Gone Wrong
u/Tarsala3791: I received a taxidermied deer hoof with a candle holder stuck where the ankle would be. Only it’s bad taxidermy, so it is constantly shedding a fine white powder on the table.
20. I Was Excited
u/christinagleas: When I was a wee seven years old, my grandmother placed a long skinny box with my name on it under the Christmas tree about a week before the holiday.
For the next seven days, my small self drooled over the idea of a play baby stroller folded up in that box, just waiting to be filled with various stuffed animals.
On that magical morning, I ripped the box open only to discover it was a VACUUM CLEANER. Not a toy one, either. A real-life, serious, small vacuum cleaner.
My grandmother claimed it was a great idea because “I loved cleaning when I visited her house.” That’s because you’re basically a hoarder, and your house is disgusting, Granny.
21. Cotton Balls in a Bag
u/Thewrongbakedpotato: I got a Ziploc bag filled with cotton balls with the words “ghost poos” written on the bag with a Sharpie.
22. My Aunt Was a Re-Gifter
u/pixierambling: My aunt tried to re-gift me a bracelet and earrings I had bought for her a few months earlier. It was insulting to hear, “Oh Pixie! I got these ESPECIALLY for you!” in a saccharine voice.
The funny part is that she forgot we even gave it to her, considering my brother and I were the only people in the family who remembered her birthday and even bothered to do anything about it.
23. My Brother’s Present
u/[deleted]: My brother gave me a hand turkey that he drew minutes earlier for Christmas. This would have been okay if he was five or something. He was 21 years old. I framed it and gifted it back to him the following year.
24. Box of peanut butter cup cookies
Deleted user: My father-in-law gave me a box of peanut butter cup cookies, but the package didn’t mention peanuts anywhere. He pretended to forget about my severe peanut allergy.
I saw him laughing as my husband rushed me to the hospital. I GOT MY CRUEL REVENGE! Three days later, I received tons of angry texts from my furious mother-in-law.
At that moment, my husband burst into the room, his face red, yelling, ‘WHAT DID YOU DO TO DAD’S CAR?’ I had secretly filled it with dozens of air fresheners – the one scent he absolutely despises.
He couldn’t even sit in it without gagging. My husband was fuming, but I calmly explained it was a taste of his own medicine. Now, both our families are in a standoff, but I feel my point was made loud and clear.
25. A plastic pig
Deleted user: Every New Year’s since I was 6, my stepmom has given me a plastic pig. Yes, a pig. Every. Single. Year. I always acted surprised because she has some mental health issues, and I didn’t want to upset her.
But this year, my sister couldn’t take it anymore. She: “Are you seriously still clueless?” Me: “Clueless about what?” She: “Check the underside of the pig.” I looked, and my heart just stopped.
There was a tiny note – “Just because it’s funny!” Every year, it turns out, my stepmom thought it was a hilarious joke to give the same odd gift. There was no deeper meaning, no secret treasure, just a quirky sense of humor that I never quite understood.
Well, a gift is a gift, no matter what it is. Have you ever received a gift you despised? If yes, share your story in the comment section below.
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Love and Peace