By · @askfelicity  ·  · 62 Shares

‘Tis the season to buy buy buy… but what do you get someone you are dating yet aren’t in an exclusive relationship together? Check out Felicity’s advice to a reader…

Hey Felicity, I’m a guy in need of advice. I’m done with my Christmas shopping except for one person. I have been out with a new woman who I like a lot but we’ve just gone out a few times. We’ve talked about getting serious but we are taking our time since things are pretty new. What is the best way to handle gift giving when you’ve just started dating someone but aren’t yet in a relationship with them?”

Oh wow, that is such a common question this time of year. And what a lucky lady to have such a considerate man.

Gift Giving on Dating StatusThere is a lot of pressure to wow that special someone and it’s easy to go overboard. The flip side, is that you don’t want to ignore the season and give nothing like a Scrooge.

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer but I think it is best to avoid an expensive gift and go with something thoughtful yet simple.

Here are some tips to help you select the exact-right gift:

Know Her Traditions First

Be aware of how she celebrates and if there are any cultural or religious observances. So new into dating, you may not fully know yet what her traditions or what her faith may even be. It’s a good idea before buying anything to just ask her how she acknowledges this time of year.

Think of Something Personal and Meaningful That You Could Give

This is a great opportunity to show you’ve paid attention to what she’s shared with you. Maybe there is a book you’ve talked about or a favorite author, books make a very sweet gift.

If you know her favorite color, a pretty scarf is a good idea. A great bottle of wine with an invitation to share it together is a romantic gift.

If she has a favorite manicure place, a gift certificate for a mani/pedi would be a nice surprise.

If she puts up a tree, an ornament is another great idea. Think of favorite places she’s mentioned, like cities or monuments. Or if she has a special hobby or interest, choose an ornament that represents that. You can find an ornament to fit the bill pretty easily these days!

Value Isn’t Always About Dollars

Anything you give should be well under the $50-100 range (or even lower) especially if you haven’t discussed exchanging gifts.

Sometimes even a small $10 present that has a lot of thought behind it is way more exciting to receive than an impersonal but more expensive gift. So think meaningful over money spent.

Forego the Gift Giving and Instead Plan a Holiday-Themed Date

Touring local light displays, going ice skating, even going together to complete last minute shopping and then out for a meal are all ideas that would serve as great first-holiday-together memories.

There are countless activities this time of year that celebrate the festive season. Even going to a favorite restaurant that is done up with decorations and a seasonal menu feels extra-special.

What I Definitely Advise Against Is Buying a Full-Blown Extravagant Gift at This Point

As tempting as it might be when you are newly smitten at this time of year, overwhelming someone new with something grand is not a good idea.

One year, a friend of mine was gifted a very nice silver necklace from Tiffany and Co. from a guy she’d been on two dates with in the weeks leading up to Christmas. It was a lovely gift but she felt so uncomfortable accepting it! Especially when she had nothing to give him in return. Awkward!

Another gift to carefully consider is something way down the road, like a concert.

Another friend who went on a few dates with a guy and he gifted her a ticket to a show by her favorite musician. By the time the concert came about, they were no longer dating. The guy had the nerve to ask for the ticket back because he wanted to take someone else. Lame!

If you do opt for a gift like concert tickets, give them freely without expectation that you would be her plus one. The last thing a gift should come with are attached strings!

Bottom line: there will be plenty of time to give more expensive gifts in the coming months should your relationship develop. After all, Valentine’s Day is just a handful of weeks after Christmas!


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Felicity Keith

Felicity Keith dishes advice on sex, dating, and love. She is the author of The Language of Desire and The Psystrology Method

Drop her a line at askfelicitykeith.com or facebook.com/AskFelicity to ask your burning relationship questions!

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