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20+ WORST Gifts We Ever Received

By michellehorton |

I asked my Early Mama readers for their worst gifts of all time — and even I was shocked at how bad they were!

There were so many submissions that I separated them into common categories, featuring my very favorites of the bunch. Can you beat these awful Christmas gifts?:

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20+ Worst Gifts We Ever Received

Used Gifts

If you're scrambling for a last-minute gift, don't just head into your attic or junk drawer. I heard of so many clearly used gifts, including a used headband (ew!), a garage-sale-reject waffle maker (and used mix!), dead batteries, and a Starbucks gift card with $3 left on it.

Note: I saw a huge in-law trend. C’mon in-laws — try a little harder!

What’s the WORST gift you ever received?


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Read more on relationships with your in-laws: A Grandmother’s Lament

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About michellehorton



Michelle Horton is the founder of Early Mama, an award-winning site that proves young motherhood doesn’t have to define or limit us. When not writing, she’s typically pretending to be a superhero in her 4-year-old son’s imaginative play. Read bio and latest posts → Read Michelle's latest posts →

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8 thoughts on “20+ WORST Gifts We Ever Received

  1. carissa says:

    I will never forget the year my stepmother gave me toiletries. And I’m not talking fancy body wash. She literally wrapped a box of Q-tips. It was the most awkward opening of presents ever. What are you supposed to say?!?

  2. Becca says:

    Wow. While many of the gifts are pretty awful, some of the submitters are just as bad! A bag of tongue scrapers from your boss? Maybe rather than submitting it to a website, there’s a hint that could be taken. Cold Stone Creamery gift card to round the gift up to budget? I’m baffled as to what’s wrong with that.

  3. Becca says:

    Having said that… Grandad bought my mum (his own daughter) a giant roll of saran wrap one year. Nope, I don’t know why either.

  4. michellehorton says:

    @Becca: That reader told me everyone in the office was given bags of tongue scrapers. It’s just an awkward gift to get, no? And as for the Cold Stone one — yeah, everyone loves ice cream, but it was in a moment of panic. And one that she found a little random, from her husband.

  5. Francesca says:

    My ex in laws got me a pair of pajamas that was like 5 sizes too big for me. And a tube of chapstick, like regular chapstick brand chapstick in a box all wrapped up. They packed this all up and mailed it across the country! But when I asked them what they wanted they requested: A blazer for the dad, a fancy stone baker, a copy of Grey’s anatomy for the sister, not super cheap stuff!

  6. Stephanie says:

    I recieved a book from my own father that was titled “What should I do with my life”. I know it was meant well but I dont need to hear about everyone elses success stories. I thought I was doing just fine but obviously he didnt. And to open it up in front of my whole family was pretty humiliating….

  7. m. Luz says:

    I can´t forget my boyfriend give me a paralyser for my bag on my birthday.
    I went them to the store and change it for two fishing spoons!!! It was the only thing in that store or a thermos….

  8. Kasandra says:

    A couple of years ago, my husband called my best friend late Christmas eve from JC Penney and made her talk to an associate describing a jacket that I casually mentioned was cute when we had gone shopping together. She told me later she didn’t remember what jacket it was and just guessed at what I’d like the most from the description the woman gave her. It ended up being an okay jacket but my friend was embarrassed and my husband looked pretty dumb Christmas morning, did he think my best friend wouldn’t tell me? Last year he bought me two expensive world atlas books. No I am not a geographer or traveler or anything I have no idea why he thought that was befitting but at least he picked it out himself, right? Needless to say, this past year I insisted we make a short wish list with gifts for us to choose from, I finally got that pretty little cocktail ring I have been after the past couple of years!

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