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Puzzled by the lack of gratefulness!

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Puzzled by the lack of gratefulness! Should we be mad?

Dear Diana,                                4/1/19

Last fall we attended a wedding. The bride was the daughter of some friends of ours.  It has been five months, almost going on six since the wedding and we have yet to receive a thank you note from the couple. We were excited about the gift we gave them and had taken a decent amount of time trying to think of something, we thought, at least, that was very special.  We are surprised at the lack of gratefulness.  It wasn’t a very large wedding, so trying to justify for them that they may still be going through the guest list and writing notes doesn’t work.

Are we terrible for feeling put out and border line angry over this?

Thanks for your insight.

Puzzled by the lack of gratefulness

See Diana's Response Below

Dear Puzzled by the lack of gratefulness,

You send an interesting scenario, one I know that others have scratched their heads over, as well. I can understand your feelings of bewilderment and disappointment in the newlyweds. I have always been a believer in saying “thank you,” pretty much for anything someone gives me. I wish more people would believe that way, also. If there were more genuine gratitude in the world, I am convinced it would naturally be a better place.

All that said, I think it is important to ask yourself how important is it really to receive the acknowledgement or thanks from them. Gifts are best given without conditions attached, or expectations. That immediately relinquishes oodles of disappointment. Gifts given from the heart because you really want to give them are typically the best ways to give.

If the couple are not people you would normally give holiday type gifts or birthday gifts to, and their wedding gift is the only one they are likely to receive from you, then is it really that wildly important to receive anything further from them?  Not to condone the lack of acknowledgement or thanks, which I totally do not… but in the big, big picture of life, will this miss really make a difference in your lives? Let’s hope they enjoy whatever the special gift was you gave them, and my suggestion is that you forgive and forget about it. Let it go without prejudice or malice and enjoy their company as normal whenever you see them again.  I have learned a long time ago that there are some things that are just not worth agonizing over. This may be one of them.

We have all been that person, or know someone who was, that sends holiday or birthday gifts to family members or friends and then never receives acknowledgement of them, let alone a thank you. It’s fair in this scenario to decide when you’ve had enough and stop sending gifts to them. I don’t see your situation as the same thing as this, as a wedding gift is a one time gesture and merits a different level of tolerance than repeated gift giving without thanks or acknowledgement would.

Rest a bit assured, it’s very likely your newlywed friends are enjoying the gift you gave them, which, I am pretty sure was your original hope!

Thanks for writing!


Gifts are best given without conditions attached, or expectations.