By Kimberly James, MatchMaster, FindYourPlusOne.com
With the holidays here, it is easy to get swept away in the spirit of gift giving. But when it comes to a new relationship or someone you are casually dating, it can be unclear to gift or not to gift. There are no real rules or guidelines to follow but there are ways to ease the confusion.
If you are just a few weeks or a month or so into seeing someone, how do you know if gift giving is appropriate or too soon? A good indicator is the number of dates you have been on together. If you’ve only had one or two dates, there’s no reason to extend a gift. If you’ve been seeing each other four or five times a week consistently over the past month, that would warrant an acknowledgement of the holiday.
If you are deciding to observe the holiday, a good way to make it less personal and more festive is to suggest doing something together rather than exchanging presents. Is there a Cirque du Soleil show in your town? One person could pay for the tickets, while the other pays for dinner. Want to keep it low key? Go Dutch for dinner and a movie. Is there an ice skating rink in town? Go for hot chocolate and a spin on the ice. Take a drive through a neighborhood decorated with Christmas lights and then go have hot chocolate by the fire at a local restaurant.
There are many ways to share the spirit of the holidays with someone you just met. Gift giving can often be a personal and intimate experience between people. To eliminate mixed messages or off mark presents, the best gift you can give someone is your presence. Spend time together and enjoy each other’s company. Hopefully next year, you will be exchanging more personal and special presents with each other.