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Old 12-20-2015, 01:10 PM
 
2,541 posts, read 2,154,265 times
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So today, someone that I'm close to came to me and handed me a Christmas card in an envelope. When I opened up the card, there was a $100 bill inside. And the thing is, I know that this person is not doing too well financially. So, I was very surprised that they chose to give me any money. When I opened up the card, I had no idea that there would be money inside.

It's a sweet gesture and I certainly could use the money right now, but I honestly feel that this person needs the money more than I do. Should I return the money? Should I go to person and say, "Thank you, but..."? Or should I just leave it as it is.

I don't know what to do. I feel bad.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:24 PM
 
4,741 posts, read 4,022,469 times
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Take it for the kindness that it was. Do not give it back, that would be rude. You are lucky to have a generous friend. Think of a helpful gift you can give in return that is an action, something like shoveling snow off his sidewalk all winter.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:36 PM
 
16,797 posts, read 14,536,853 times
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Use the money to buy a gift card for the friend and give that back to him/her.
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Old 12-20-2015, 01:55 PM
 
Location: southwestern PA
20,419 posts, read 37,636,044 times
Reputation: 39049
Quote:
Originally Posted by historyfan View Post
Take it for the kindness that it was. Do not give it back, that would be rude. You are lucky to have a generous friend. Think of a helpful gift you can give in return that is an action, something like shoveling snow off his sidewalk all winter.
Excellent advice.
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Old 12-20-2015, 02:51 PM
 
Location: Texas
14,969 posts, read 14,212,120 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zentropa View Post
Use the money to buy a gift card for the friend and give that back to him/her.
This sounds like the best approach. I'd likely make the gift card $150 or 200.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:29 PM
 
Location: Oklahoma USA
1,196 posts, read 840,614 times
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OP do you know of anything "practical" (as compared to luxurious or frivolous) that the gift giver might actually need now?

I am thinking that it might be kind of awkward to give a gift card back, i.e. money for money.

But if you know of anything they are using that is getting worn out, like appliances, tools, things like that, then you could get them a new one. Or good quality non perishable foods you know they like. Heck, even a chainsaw!

Or a AAA auto club membership.

Years ago, when my grandparents were poor but proud, my mom would box up things like aluminum foil, canned hams, vitamins, batteries -- everyday things, but which cost money -- as presents every year.

A person who is dealing with a very tight budget can feel a lot of "breathing room" getting practical gifts. I know my grandmother actually liked getting "everyday" things all wrapped up.

But you know your family member or friend better than any of us here.

But I do know that practical gifts ARE appreciated more than "trinkets". It's realistic. And given in good spirit.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:32 PM
 
35,108 posts, read 40,221,218 times
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Accept the gift as it was intended when given, do not attempt to return the gift or outgift your friend. If you are uncomfortable keeping the gift donate it to a worthy cause.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:37 PM
 
Location: Columbia SC
8,954 posts, read 7,733,997 times
Reputation: 12164
Quote:
Originally Posted by UrbanCrossroads View Post
So today, someone that I'm close to came to me and handed me a Christmas card in an envelope. When I opened up the card, there was a $100 bill inside. And the thing is, I know that this person is not doing too well financially. So, I was very surprised that they chose to give me any money. When I opened up the card, I had no idea that there would be money inside.

It's a sweet gesture and I certainly could use the money right now, but I honestly feel that this person needs the money more than I do. Should I return the money? Should I go to person and say, "Thank you, but..."? Or should I just leave it as it is.

I don't know what to do. I feel bad.
Along these lines someone invited a couple of friends out to a holiday dinner (tomorrow) and said it was their treat. I said I was not comfortable with them paying. They said it was their pleasure and enjoyment to do so. I did not argue.

I will, and as you should, thank them and somehow "repay" the favor at a later time. No need to feel bad or even spend the money on them.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:50 PM
 
371 posts, read 316,981 times
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Same thing happened to me 25 years ago. I still know the person after 25 years. Just a neighbor.
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Old 12-20-2015, 03:56 PM
 
371 posts, read 316,981 times
Reputation: 349
My boat owner had always 'Lived in a shoebox.' East Coast, bubble, suspicious. I got him to give a little bit of money away (for him), here and there. I had to call the people beforehand and say 'Don't turn it down! He'll think he's insulting you and won't offer to anyone else.' Just say 'Thats so nice! I'll come over and mow your lawn every day.' He'll never take you up on it and his lawn mowing guy won't let you do it, but he'll like it since this was an entirely new experience to him. Its good for him as well. Makes him become a normal person again after awhile.
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