You seriously reach an age when being given more “stuff” to include food, becomes a ritual rather than an expression of true affection. As much as I enjoy giving food and/or booze, as people age, they may very well have to either cut back on what they eat or drink and what was once a welcome delicacy might no longer be practical. Someone who is trying to downsize definitely doesn’t need extra “stuff”, and how many ties/pins can a person wear?
Now, special treats like restaurant gift cards might still be okay, but again, at some point you tend to cut back on that as well. Most people have chartiable causes they support whether it’s a church or a specific non-profit organization. A thoughtful card with a note or letter and notice of a charity you have given to (not one that you support and think they should) may be the best gift you can give as people age. A gift of time is another good idea such as a trip to a salon for someone who doesn’t get out as much as before. Time, however, can be a very precious commodity in our busy lives, so that might not be feasible.
With the holidays only a few months away, maybe this is the year that members of the family should broach the subject and see how people feel about it. Now, there should also be sensitivity in case some family members are experiencing financial difficulty and giving a sum of money would be a problem. That’s why suggesting cards or worthy causes is important. By doing this, you don’t put someone in a potentially embarrassing situation. In truth, the individuals who no longer wish to receive “stuff” are the ones who should initiate the discussion, and for all of you out there that this applies to, give it some thought.