Father's Day is just around the corner in the United States and U.K., and it used to be a difficult day for me. That was when I used to break my own rule and let the women in my life shop for me if they chose. It just seemed mean spirited to stop them, even though all clothing gifts were automatically recycled to Goodwill with the tags still on.
That was because, much as I love women, most of them can barely clothe themselves and, despite their sex's genetic assumption that they are shopping goddesses, they know nothing about clothing for men. Naturally, this point of view caused a certain amount of friction over the years.
I'm pleased that after several false starts I've arrived at a reasonable compromise. It wasn't even that hard once I got the idea, which is kind of a guy's version of a bridal register. I pick a menswear catalog with a selection of things that I like, such as the pictured Arnys Forestiere jacket (I should be so lucky). I mark ten or twelve acceptable or desireable items at various price points and give the catalog to any interested woman. She can get me any of the marked items knowing I'll be somewhat surprised and truly greatful (this is quite a change - for years I would behave badly to any woman that bought me clothing as a matter of principle). Of course, the same approach can be taken with sports gear, alcohols, and other good stuff.
Now if you've got one of those rare ladies who knows instinctively that the best gift she can get you is a bottle of single malt or two seats behind the first base dugout, you don't need my help. But if there is still stress in this part of your relationship, try giving them a catalog. If you're in the same boat I was, things can hardly get any worse.