By Chelsea Ritschel

When to give gifts in a new relationship: Wondering what type of gift to give in your new flame? My interview with The Independent helps you evaluate what to give (and what to spend) according to where you are in the relationship: #giftgiving #holiday #newrelationships

Chelsea writes, “Navigating the early stages of a new relationship can be hard on its own, as it often requires balancing the line between interested and aloof.

It can be even more daunting when it coincides with the holiday season, when deciding whether a gift is appropriate and expected, or could scare someone away, becomes a milestone worthy of its own consideration.

To find out when it’s appropriate to purchase a gift in a relationship, and what types of presents are suitable for these potential partners, we spoke with two relationship experts, Susan Winter, a New York City dating coach professional and bestselling author, and Relationship Hero’s coach Shoya, who presented us with their dating rules for the holidays.

As it turns out, there is such a thing as too early in a relationship for gift-giving, with Winter explaining that “measuring appropriate gift-giving requires evaluating where you are in your relationship”.

According to Winter, the task can understandably be intimidating because the “underlying fear is that our gift will either be too much or too little”.

“We’ll either overwhelm our partner and scare them off, or disappoint them and lose interest,” she acknowledged. “We don’t want to inflate our relationship status, but we certainly don’t want to minimise something that’s going well.”

When it comes to deciding whether a relationship has reached the point of gift-giving or not, Winter said that “discernment is key”.

“Ask yourself: ‘Does this person like me? Do I feel comfortable in this person’s presence? Is what we share mutual?’ A ‘yes’ answer to these questions is ideal,” she explained.

However, if you’re not sure, she says it is best to proceed with caution, as “your generosity won’t increase their desire (only their guilt)”. “There’s no buying your way into someone’s heart. So it’s got to feel real and reciprocal,” she said.

To successfully navigate the relationship milestone, Winter suggests covering your bases by “getting your new partner something,” whether it is a card or a small well-thought-out gift such as a book they’d like.