The Politics of a Baby Shower

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Feature image from REFINERY

Who is meant to plan them?

Mother, mother in law or sister.

The mother to be is not meant to host her own shower - Becuase basically she should be too stressed out to worry about it.

When is the best time to have a Baby Shower?

Normally 8 to 6 weeks before the baby is due.  Definitely not before the third trimester.  Not too close to when the baby is born.  So that there is time to return unnecessary items and exchange them … And to purchase things that might have been missed.  You don’t want to have brought everything, and then get it all again at the baby Shower.

What is the Deal with Gifts?

Skeptics will tell you that a Baby shower is just a blatant attempt to get presents.  I don’t agree.

Some people are uncomfortable asking for gifts, others find it easy.  Some guest want to be told what you want, and others think it is presumptuous to tell people what you need.  This will depend on your friends.  But here is how I see it.  It is not about the gift, it is about the token of love.  Don’t go to a baby shower empty handed.  The gift, whether it be second hand, homemade or brand new, the gift is a way of leaving something with the new mother that will make her feel loved.

Remember that this is a time when she is feeling her most insecure, vulnerable and uncertain about the future.  And a gift will reassure her that you will be there to support her over the next few months.

What is with the Games?

The games are often horrible and hard to bear.  Keep in mind that games are often suggested as a means to bring people together who don’t know each other, to relieve the awkwardness.  Think of them as a distraction from having to make small talk with people you will never meet again.

I personally hate the games.  But when a game is offered at a baby shower, I appreciate the effort gone into organizing it and I always participate without grumbling and spoiling the mood.

Do you have to go?

Well yes.  It might not seem like a big deal to you.  You might think baby showers are stupid.  But for the mother to be, it a way of her bringing all her friends together and surrounding herself with support.  It’s about giving her a good time, getting her laughing and talking about the baby coming.  It is not about you.

Missing a baby shower is almost on par with missing an engagement party.  Not as bad as missing the wedding, but you should definitely go.

Themes, decorations, and rituals?

Ask the mother to be what she would like, of course.  All effort should be made to suit the personality and tastes of the mother to be - But there is also a little-unspoken rule about Baby Shower’s - The guest of honor needs to be gracious if she finds herself at a party that isn’t exactly to her taste.  For example pastels everywhere.

If the Mother to Be has Previous Lost a Baby

Check HERE (add link to the last post) because in that case the rules are very different.  A Baby shower after a Miscarriage or stillborn child is an emotionally loaded affair.  But that doesn’t mean everyone should pretend it’s not happening.


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