Is a fancy new vacuum cleaner an acceptable 40th birthday gift for a mom of two?

If you're married, and have kids, at one time or another you've had to buy your significant other a birthday gift and the struggle to get the perfect gift can sometimes be extremely difficult. It's even worse when you buy your partner something that you think they are going to love and after they open it, this happens, like it did to Dale who emailed us.

"My wife turned 40 last week, and for her birthday I got her the best gift. At least I thought it was!! A Dyson cordless vacuum! I know she’s been wanting one for quite some time, and when I saw it on sale over the weekend, I knew I had to get it for her. I had my daughter and son wrap it up, they even put a nice bow on it. We gave it to her at her birthday BBQ last Sunday. When she opened it, she didn’t look pleased. I waited a few seconds and said, but you’ve wanted this for so long! and she said not for my birthday! Birthday gifts are supposed to be fun, and something that spoils me. A vacuum is something we buy together as a house gift. Am I a jerk for getting my wife a vacuum for her birthday?"

It seems like we asked some form of this question before. Whether it's excise equipment, a gym membership or in Dales's case a vacuum, I live by the rule that a birthday gift should be something that the recipient is going to enjoy or like Dales's wife said, something that they can spoil themselves with. So in this case, YES Dale, I think you might be an unintentional jerk.

How can he fix it? My recommendation is to plan a nice romantic weekend getaway for just the two of you. Go all out with flowers, chocolate-covered strawberries and lots of mommy and daddy time!..LOL!

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