My two preschool kids have been gifted the Highlights magazine, which is really a great magazine, but unfortunately both my mother and my aunt have gifted it to them, so they received duplicates this month, and presumably will continue to for the next year.

Some of the materials are consumable activities, so it's fine for them to each have a copy, but I'm worried about my mom and aunt both feeling disappointed or hurt when they find out about each other's duplicate gifts.

What would be the appropriate way to let a gift giver know that their gift is definitely appreciated even if it is a duplicate?

  • Hi Sashah, I've edited your title and question, to remove some off-topic part, please review it and either approve/edit-improve/rollback, thanks
    – OldPadawan
    Commented Dec 13, 2019 at 14:55

2 Answers 2


I'm assuming that there isn't some financial hardship or other significant complicating factor

I don't think there's an issue here. You've got two small kids, and now two magazines per month that have activities in them. When your aunt and mom find out (you could probably tell them yourself, this is kind of adorable) just say something like:

Haha, it's actually working out great! Kid1 and Kid2 each love having their own magazine to play with and it saves so much effort not having to get them to share the consumable parts! Thanks you two!

I was once gifted a year-long subscription to Mad Magazine by each set of grandparents and they all laughed it off as "ha! great minds think alike, we all know Pip so well!" And in the future they just coordinated amongst themselves. You could help with this coordination going forward, if you want.

  • 1
    How and when did your grandparents find out? Does it matter how long OP waits?
    – Jesse
    Commented Dec 16, 2019 at 2:20
  • 1
    For us it was within the first month. The gifts were both christmas gifts and we were all together for someone's birthday 3 weeks later, so it was just around then. I think earlier is better than later, but I don't think it would matter too much as long as it's explained cheerfully. Commented Dec 16, 2019 at 14:14

You can tell the giver(s) that, e.g. their 2-year subscription has been combined with another to make a 4-year subscription; no part of the gift(s) have been wasted.

I was once the recipient of duplicate subscriptions. I found the publisher’s contact email address to which I explained the situation. I quoted, exactly, the names, mailing addresses, and expiration dates on each magazine. I requested the two subscriptions be combined into a single, longer subscription. Within one issue, the duplicates stopped and the expiration date was extended.

  • 1
    This feels like a great response for an adult subscription. I'm not so sure it's great for a subscription for small children, as many of those are geared for specific age ranges.
    – Ed Grimm
    Commented Dec 15, 2019 at 4:19

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.