What to Do And Say When Someone Rejects Your Gift?

You spent time choosing a nice gift for a person, but he or she suddenly rejected it?! It’s unpleasant, but we will help you to cope with that!

Written by Kate Holmsy. Updated on What to Do And Say When Someone Rejects Your Gift

The time of the winter holidays is approaching, and so comes the gift-giving time! But we don’t only present gifts to our loved ones and close friends and relatives – many of us tend to gift other people whom we love and care for just like that, with no special reason.

For quite many people, the act of giving a gift is a way to show his or her love and care to another person.

And this is why it is so painful and it hurts so much when that person suddenly rejects your gift or sends it back to you! You might surely feel rejected, confused, even mad!

Why did he or she do that?! Was there anything wrong with the gift? Did the person not like what you gave him or her? Or is it the way to show you their disrespect and personal dislike?!

Is it rude to not accept a gift? Well, many of you will surely say yes!

However, there might be reasons why a person decided to not accept it. So today, in the article that we have prepared for you, we will try to give a detailed answer to this bothersome question.

You will learn what to do when someone rejects you and your gift, and also we will tell you why people can do that at all. In addition, we will teach you how to politely decline a gift without hurting another person’s feelings.

Finally, we will give you a few suggestions on what you could do with a rejected gift.

We hope that all this will help you to both understand the reasons of those who reject gifts better, and avoid taking what has happened too close to your heart since the reason might not be in you personally at all!

What to Do And What to Say When Your Gift Is Rejected?

So, imagine that there is the following situation: you are getting ready for a celebration (for instance, for someone’s Birthday) or a party, and of course, you are spending quite a lot of your time and effort on finding a nice gift for that person.

However, that’s what is happening next! On the day of the event, when you present the person with that carefully selected item, you hear him or her rejecting it!

It does not matter in this case whether it was done super politely, you might still feel frustrated and devastated! And the only thing that keeps rolling around in your mind is “what shall I do now?”.

Well, etiquette rules all say the same thing: there is only one thing you can do when someone says “no, thank you” and that is to accept the return.

Do it calmly without confrontation or making any sort of an argument. Your emotions may rise, of course, especially if you were choosing that gift with your whole heart. And you might even be slightly shocked or put off!

However, do your best and try to keep all of those emotions on the short leash, and accept the item back with grace and in a reserved way.

Speaking with a calm tone, you can also ask why your friend (or whoever you gave the gift to) is giving the item back. If the reason is something you feel is a sort of misunderstanding, you can gently ask them to please reconsider taking it.

Nevertheless, if the person is still refusing it, that should be the end. There is no sense to push the person further. Just stay calm, say OK and move on. Think of the process of gift giving as of something that is not about you or me, but as of something that is about them!

What to Do And What to Say When Your Gift Is Rejected
Credits: HayDmitriy, via Crello.com

What to Do With the Rejected Gift?

But even if you managed to conceal your negative emotions and upset feelings, you still have one more issue to deal with. What shall you do with the gift that was rejected?

Well, in fact, here you don’t have that many alternative options! Of course, it would not be the best idea to leave the item for yourself and use it.

Moreover, not all the gifts that you were going to give could be used by yourself. However, if you feel ok about this way of solving the problem, then why not?

What to Do With the Rejected Gift (2)
Credits: HayDmitriy, via Crello.com

But normally, what you can do in this case is to simply return the item back to the store where it was bought. If you still have the receipt, if the original package of the item is not damaged, and if the return term has not expired yet, they will accept it back and you will get your money in return.

However, some of you might find one more way out and simply give the item to another person! That’s a bit tricky and we would even say a risky decision.

First of all, you must be sure that the new recipient does not know this gift was initially meant for another person. Otherwise, the situation will be far from pleasant for both you and the new recipient of the gift.

And second, if you decide to re-give that gift to someone else, you must be absolutely sure that another person will like the item.

So what we see to be the best option is that you simply return that gift back to the store if it is possible.

What to Do With the Rejected Gift
Credits: HayDmitriy , via Crello.com

Related: How to Respond to “Make Me”?

What Could Be the Reasons For Rejection Of the Gift?

But even though you might find the solution about what to do with the rejected gift, and even if you managed to calm yourself down pretty fast after being rejected, you will still have that question in your head: what could be the reason for giving a gift back to the giver?!

As for that, we want you to keep in mind that each situation is unique, first of all. However, in the majority of cases, the factors that cause a person to return a gift to you are usually not much varied.

  • The person that is returning your gift might be trying to send you a message.
  • They might actually be acting in your better interest by rejecting a gift.

That is why it is important not to jump to conclusions or take anything too personal initially! Especially if we are talking about an established relationship of many years.

So below you will find a few most common reasons for what can make people decline gifts that you give to them.

What Could Be the Reasons For Rejection Of the Gift
Credits: karandaev. via Crello.com

Related: How to Respond When a Girl Says She Is Busy?

They simply do not like it.

Surprisingly, this is one of the most common reasons. Still it is a valid reason and it can be especially common among close friends or family members who frequently swap gifts.

What can indeed be hurtful in this situation is when a person you do not know well returns your gift with a frank comment that sounds like “I don’t like this” or “Why did you give me this?”. Well that hurts!

On the other hand, you could try to find positive moments about this situation. What moments exactly, you may be wondering? Well, this situation may shed a lot of light on the person you are dealing with.

Also, you can learn more about their level of gratitude and entitlement. So what we recommend you do is to accept the gift back graciously and think twice about giving anything else to this particular person in the future.

They simply do not like it.
Credits: AntonMatyukha, via Crello.com

The gift didn’t fit.

This is very common among close friends and relatives as well, just like the previous reason we described above.

Things happen! And if your gift didn’t come with a gift receipt, the person might feel it better to give the gift back to you instead of re-gifting it to someone else or trying to sell it, for example.

The gift did not fit.
Credits: AntonMatyukha , via Crello.com

They already have one.

This does not happen much often, but still it happens when you give a gift to a person and he or she tells you that they already have exactly the same one!

In most cases, the person returning the gift will let you know honestly that your gift is a duplicate. So if this is the case, just take it back and either use it yourself or try to get your money back.

There’s nothing wrong with it, and there is no fault of yours. Who knew that someone else has already given the same item to the recipient?! One nice thing about this situation is that you can use the refund to purchase another gift and try again!

They already have one.
Credits: ArturVerkhovetskiy , via Crello.com

They’re just not that into you.

Sad to say so, but it happens. If you are giving a gift to someone because you have obvious romantic feelings you are trying to express this way, and the person returns the gift, it should be clear that they are not interested unfortunately.

However, you should not take this personally! Even better, you should consider yourself as having very good taste! This person is honest with his or her feelings, and you are very chivalrous. So just move on and keep trying with others you find interesting!

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How to Reject a Gift Politely?

However, you might face this situation of gift refusal from a completely different side! What if it’s you who has to reject the gift that’s being given to you?

The reasons can be absolutely different: you might not like the item, or you don’t like the person who is giving it to you and so you’d rather not accept anything from him or her at all. Finally, it’s possible that you already have the very same item as the one that has just been given to you!

No matter the reason, you need to know how to politely refuse a gift.

Of course, the best would be to let your guests know in advance that you are not willing to accept gifts, but that’s only if you don’t want any gifts at all from anyone! If this is the case, just send them all the thank you notes that say in a respectful manner that you don’t want any gifts. Something like “We respectfully request no gifts” or “No gifts please” must be more than enough.

What about the situation when a person whom you don’t like much is giving you something? How to react to a gift you don’t like or you don’t want to receive?

How to Reject a Gift Politely
Credits: HayDmitriy, via Crello.com

Well, first of all, remember that you must be very careful with other people’s feelings! You don’t want to hurt anyone even though you find that person unpleasant or something!

So you can simply thank him or her for such a nice gift and say that, unfortunately, you find it impossible for yourself to accept it.

The wording may vary, but the general message should be clear: “I appreciate your gift and the time you spent on choosing it, but I feel uncomfortable to accept it and so I feel I must return it”.

Now that you know why people can reject gifts and what you should say in case your gift is refused, we are sure that you will react correctly and calmly in a similar situation.

See, you need to keep in mind that it’s not always about you personally (in most cases – it’s absolutely not about you!), and your recipient might refuse the gift for some other reasons.

Of course, it is good if the person manages to somehow explain his or her actions, but even if not, don’t stress and simply make use of one of our tips for what to do with the gift that was rejected.

Frequently Asked Questions

⭐ Why is it hard for some people to receive gifts?

There might be psychological reasons for that.

⭐ Is it ok to ask a person what exactly he or she wants to receive as a gift?

Of course, it’s ok if the person is fine with knowing what the gift will be!

⭐ Is it a good idea to give perfume to a girl as a gift?

Yes, but only if you are 100% sure that she’ll like the fragrance!

Written by
Kate worked in "The Fashion Magazine" for four years as a freelance writer and loved to consult and help people with their style. How to create your own style, how to look beautiful, and select trendy colors for your hair - these are just a few of many issues Kate will happily explain in Beezzly Beauty blogs!
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Gift giving & receiving (what it says about your relationship)Gift giving & receiving (what it says about your relationship)