When ‘regifting’ becomes ‘offloading’

I think we’re all familiar with the practise of ‘regifting’ – passing along unwanted gifts to someone else, oftentimes without disclosing the fact that the item was once yours.

Regifting has its fans and detractors, but that’s a whole different debate. What I want to comment on today is the unsavoury practise of what I call ‘offloading’: where you take an unwanted gift and dump it on someone – almost anyone – else, just to be rid of the darn thing. I should know: I’ve offloaded (shameful hang of head) and have been offloaded onto (you can just tell).

The difference between a regular regift and an offloaded regift is twofold:

1. The offloaded item is not a very suitable gift for the recipient. But hey – it’s their birthday, you’ve got this thing you want rid of, and…it’ll do, right? Plus you won’t have to spend a cent or go out shopping or anything – hooray!

2. The offloader may refuse to take ‘no’ for an answer. For example: I’ve had clothes offloaded onto me, and despite my protestations that the garments really didn’t suit my style or colouring, or even my size, the ‘givers’ stridently overruled my protestations – they were so anxious to have the extra wardrobe space. In the end, it was easier to just accept the clothes than have an argument. (My passive revenge: I passed the items straight onto charity – which is where they should’ve gone in the first place, instead of being foisted onto someone who didn’t want them and passed off as a gift.)

A regifted item can still be a great gift – if it truly suits the recipient’s needs and taste. But if you’re offloading, to save yourself time, effort or money – and you know when you’re offloading, oh boy do you know – that’s no good at all.



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