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by Abigail Van Buren

Boyfriend's Gifts Come With Extra Baggage

DEAR ABBY: As a gift, my boyfriend, "Seth," gave me a Chihuahua puppy. I like dogs, but have never expressed a desire to have one. In fact, I have repeatedly mentioned my dislike for small dogs and that I wouldn't have a dog due to my travel schedule for work. I'd have to pay for food, veterinary care, toys, boarding, etc., and the dog would be alone in my apartment all day while I'm at the office.

Seth still chose to give me one. When I refused his gift, he yelled and left. My friends think I was rude, and that Seth was sweet for buying me a puppy. I tried explaining to them, but they were sarcastic and mean about my decision not to accept the dog.

This isn't the first time something like this has happened with Seth. For my birthday he bought me a smartphone, signed me up for a two-year contract and expected me to pay the monthly bill. I refused that, too. Am I wrong? -- SIMPLE GIRL IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

DEAR SIMPLE GIRL: You and Seth appear to have a serious disconnect when it comes to communication. Is this the only area of your relationship in which he is tone-deaf? Your boyfriend seems to be the master of the "grand gesture," with no thought about the responsibilities his generous gifts will impose on the recipient.

Because you told him clearly that you dislike small dogs, he should not have forced one on you. In fact, he shouldn't have given you any living, breathing dependent creature without first having made sure it would be welcomed. You did the right thing -- the humane thing -- in not accepting the animal.

Read more in: Love & Dating | Holidays & Celebrations