Is it insulting to give birthday gifts that make fun of a person’s age?
Aging is a natural process in a human being and it is a universal fact that you have to necessarily acknowledge. Aging is also a hereditary factor and your physical attributes are mostly determined by your genes. It is true that you are making frantic efforts to keep yourself fit and young and in fact you are even shy of divulging your age. Of course, you also try to be smart and young by dyeing your hair and wearing appropriate dresses in which you look younger.
In fact you celebrate your birthday every year acknowledging the fact that you are aging. You also invite your friends and relatives to celebrate your birthday party; to divulge the fact to the whole world that you are aging; to seek their blessings and to keep yourself happy at least on the date of your birthday.
It is customary to give birthday gifts according to one’s age. When you celebrate your child’s birthday, you present sweets, dolls and new dresses etc according to their age. When the child goes to kinder garden school, or primary school, we present either pens or materials for painting or colorful comic books, school bags or children’s books etc of their favorite authors and choice. If your son or daughter comes of age and when they go to high school or college, you used to present them new dresses of their choice, mobile phones, watches or vehicles like two wheelers. All the above mentioned gifts are given to your children according to their wishes and age, taking into account their requirements and necessity.
When you get married and you are in your 30s, gifts like jewels, dresses, cars, mobile phones and other luxury articles are presented to you on your birthdays. Similarly, you present gift articles like dress materials and jewelry etc to your spouse on her birthday. However, if anybody gifts you on your birthday, milk chocolates, toys and dresses in small size that can be worn only by a ten year old boy, you may be consider them as inappropriate gifts not befitting your age.
Elder people, who are in their 50s and 60s, need your moral and physical support. Gifts like gold rings, shawls, goggles, walking sticks and mobile chairs etc may be appropriate gifts in their case. However, before purchasing any of the above mentioned gift articles, you have to assess the actual physical condition of the elder people. Suppose if he or she is hale and healthy and has no difficulty in walking, it is better to avoid presenting them with walking sticks, because they may consider it rather unnecessary and even insulting; in fact they may not take it in good spirit and you may be mistaken that you are making such a gift to them rather derisively.
If an aged person is physically challenged, you should think twice before making any gifts like wheel chair etc. Similarly, if an old person gets his or her legs fractured, they may not cherish the idea of presenting them with a wheel chair, because, the presentation of wheel chair denotes that they have permanently become immobile or disabled. In fact, the physically challenged people do not want any kind of sympathy from you and they want only an equal treatment from you.
Therefore, before deciding to purchase any gift article for presenting them during the birthday of younger people or the aged people who are in their post 50s or 60s, especially if you want to purchase walking sticks or wheel chairs etc, think twice before purchasing them; you should also consider the fact that whether they require or will use such gift articles on being gifted to them. In other words, before purchasing any gift article especially in the case of aged people, you should take your decision based on its appropriateness and utility. If the aged people happen to be your close relatives like your maternal uncle and grandpa etc, it is even better to consult them, before purchasing any gift article for them on their birth day.
Therefore, nothing wrong in presenting the gift articles to the people on their birthdays, provided that it is coupled with their utility, usage and appropriateness.