For the past few months, every magazine, website, and commercial has been offering gift ideas for your boyfriend or girlfriend. Gifts come in every size, shape, color, and form, but within a relationship, they can have hidden meanings.

The generous gifts

Underneath the wrapping paper lies the new Apple creation or designer label. It’s luxurious and, more often than not, an incredible gift. But, despite what marketing tells us, expensive isn’t always better. The gift could just be one of many from a chronic big-gift-giver, but it could also be a sign that you need to pay more attention to your significant other. A flashy gift could be a sign to let you know that he or she wants to be appreciated more—a neon light in the form of expensive gifts. Maybe your partner is expecting a big thank you in response to an elaborate gift.

The under-spender gifts

First of all, don’t base the strength of your relationship on the value of the gift! Just because you didn’t get that pricey necklace doesn’t mean that he thinks of you any less. He could just be frugal or simply clueless when it comes to gifts. In this case, a little talk about what you want could help him. Besides, let it be reiterated: the best gifts are the most sentimental and thoughtful, not the most expensive.

The flat-out bad gifts

Who hasn’t gotten an awkward pen/tie/whatever else that has nothing to do with anything you like? It’s disappointing when the wrapping paper comes off, but note the effort. If she or he was just pressed for time, or honestly thought you would appreciate the gift, smile! Maybe you didn’t make clear what kind of gift you would like. However, keep in mind that consistent way-off gifts in a relationship could be a warning sign. After all, your significant other should know you pretty well!

Giving the perfect gift

A great gift is different for different people, but usually it’s the perfect mix between useful and sentimental. It’s what he or she wanted, but spun with an intimate twist. It shows a healthy amount of understanding and communication in a relationship. If you don’t know already, find out what she or he likes. Gift giving is an important and expressive way of celebrating important occasions with our loved ones, so happy gift giving and receiving!

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