Since Kim Kardashian announced her divorce after only 72 days of marriage, the big question on everyone’s mind is, “Will she return the wedding gifts?”
Etiquette experts from all over the country are offering their advice on this topic and appear to have differences in opinion. In the end, there are many different circumstances of divorce and the couple has to do what they feel is right in their situation.
When ruling on the topic of whether or not to return wedding gifts after a divorce, this etiquette expert is going to stick with traditional etiquette rules also supported by Peggy Post in the 75th Anniversary Edition of “Emily Post’s Etiquette“.
Wedding gifts are not conditional upon the success of the marriage. The divorced couple does not have to return any wedding gifts. The exception to this rule would be if a marriage was annulled and the couple did not live together.
If you gave someone a housewarming gift and they moved away after a short period of time, you wouldn’t expect the gift to be returned. If you sent someone a gift for a promotion within a company and they terminated their employment with that company, you wouldn’t expect them to return the gift. We give gifts, unconditionally, to celebrate an event.
Yes, there have been recent situations where two people faked a marriage to receive gifts. It is unfortunate, but even in these cases, the couples have to look themselves in the mirror everyday and live with what they have done. If you gave them a gift, you chose to do so. It’s done.
Something else to consider in this dilemma is used gifts. What if I gave a couple a toaster they used before divorcing? Used items cannot be returned so I would not get my gift back. My neighbor may have given the same couple Waterford crystal which they did not use. Is it right they get their gift returned and I don’t?
Perhaps we should ask ourselves if their is anything we can do for two people who are going through a traumatic event in their lives rather than worry about a material gift we gave them. After all, etiquette rules are supposed to help others feel good about themselves.