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Help me w/ an etiquette question please?

My MIL has her heart set on hosting a shower for me back in PA...the only thing is, I wont be there! We are in Oregon now, and we can't fly home this year  for the holidays. We probably wont see all of our  extended family/friends until sometime next summer after the baby arrives.

She has heard of something called a 'card shower' which she plans to host in her home-she will provide the entertainment, food and such that one expects at a shower. But--the guests are asked to bring only things that can fit in cards so they can be easily mailed Tongue Tied.

This sounds a bit tack-tastic to me...?

The thing is, she has her heart set on it, and they're her friends, so I dont really want to rain on her parade, and frankly, I'm not sure that would even matter-she's pretty stubborn and told me once "Well, Emily Post died a long time a go." LOL.

She's trying to do something very nice for me, and she's a great MIL on all counts, just a little silly sometimes. I should just be grateful, right?

So my question is-when I call home during the shower that day to thank everyone for being there, should I hang my head in shame? Or is this sort of thing acceptable under the circumstances?

Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker

Re: Help me w/ an etiquette question please?

  • No, this is not acceptable under the circumstances.  However, at the same time, you have to balance this w/ this IS your MIL and she wants to do this.

    I hate to use this as a justification, but ...  they are her friends and if THEY want to take part, that is their choice.  They don't have to come to this shower if they really have a problem with it.  (I still don't buy that as a reason to totally do something rude, but like I said- you have to find a balance in here somewhere.)

    I would probably say to MIL "I feel uncomfortable w/ this type of shower, but if you want to throw it, I appreciate it" and just let her do what she wants to do.

    "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
    ~Benjamin Franklin

    Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
    DS dx with celiac disease 5/28/10

  • Why can't she have a shower for you and the baby when you come home?

    People actually used to be very superstitious about buying anything for a baby before it was born - I know my mother was.

     It really is not appopriate at all to have a "shower" that requires money gifts without the person being honored even being there. 

    It would be a lot more fun for everyone to have you and the baby there and be able to buy cute little outfits etc.

  • I think that if she does go ahead with this, I will just be as gracious as possible. I think I might actually sacrifice etiquette for her feelings in this case-shes getting on and the prospect of becoming a grandmother has made her so happy and giddy...i might just let her do what she wants and roll my eyes privately. If it comes to that. Its a tough situation.


    This is mostly about her. And especially with her girlfriends, it will be a celebration of her becoming a grandmother; and my role as the childs mum will actually be rather marginalized. She has never really shared the spotlight well with anyone. :). If I was mad at her, I would say she can be somewhat histrionic. But on good days, shes just eccentric.

    So, I think I'll feel better if i just think of this as her party. I mean-what she does on the other side of the country is a reflection on her right? I cant possibly be judged if I'm not even there. Thats what I'm telling myself anyway. 
    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • DH's aunt did this for her daughter (we're all in PA, she's in Arkansas, they have a large family, and we knew that she wouldn't be coming up for a while after the baby was born.)

    Shower invites were sent like a regular shower.  It was the same type of thing, whatever fits in a card, and a lot of people got gift cards for there, and some of us just bought the actual items online and had them delivered to her house. 

    We had fun, ate, and made a little video for her and emailed it to her.  She really appreciated it and sent Thank You's as normal.  I saw nothing wrong with that, as she'd obviously need some of the items way before I'd see her, and we all had fun doing something special for her. 

  • Can you SKYPE in?  Computer and camera on her end, same on yours and everyone sees your smiling face and you can virtually see the cards?  It might be an innovative solution to the distance.  And make you virtually there w/o all of the cost and hassle.

    If these are your MIL's friends and she wants to host something and she's making it work, then I say just go with it.  She's trying.  These are her friends.  They will probably just like getting together and talking about babies.

    In this day and age, people move far and wide.  Holding true to traditions like showers is difficult.  Sounds like your MIL is sincere in making the distance work.

    For what its worth, I had a shower "back home" when I was expecting.  I was there but several guests purchased and delivered my gift to my home (OOT) address.  It was a convenience for them to not have to lug the gift to the party and to me for not having to transport it 400+ miles home.  So I announced some gifts (like car seats) and made it work.

    To me, there is no shame in women coming together to celebrate a new baby, buying gift cards for easy mailing to the mom-2-be and wishing you well.  Actually it sounds very sweet.

    My darling daughter just turned 4 years old.
  • It is kind of tacky to say "cash gifts only," but this is for her circle of friends, right?  So they probably have an understanding of what flies in their group, and they may not have a problem with it at all.

    "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." Lilypie Fourth Birthday tickers Lilypie Third Birthday tickers
  • All my relatives throw showers of all kinds for the family no matter where they live, they just wait till the person of honor can make it.  Either after baby is born or whatever.  They are super fun too!  I would see if you can get her to wait till baby is born, all her guests will love to see baby.  If not I would be grateful for it, accept the gifts and provide lots of sonograms and any info you have so the guests can have something to enjoy.  Pictures of you pregnant, baby room, so on.  I mean really these people are going to be sending you tons of gift cards you will really need.  Be grateful.
  • If it were for me I'd be totally against it.

    To me it is TACKY 

  • Seems weird to me and I would not want to go to a baby shower where the mother-to-be wasn't present. Am I reading that right? That she would still have the shower without you? uh uh.

    Tell her to have a "sip and see" shower for you next summer. I would think that most of the ladies would love to see the new baby anyway. Many of my mom's friends are doing that nowadays since so many of their daughters/daugther-in-laws live out of state.

  • We had a friend that was expecting but had moved away.  We did a shower but instead of favors and whatnot we had gift wrap and bows... everything you need to wrap a gift.  The ladies brought their gifts unwrapped and we video taped them with each gift, talking to the camera as if she was there and then wrapping the gift after showing it off for the camera.  We boxed up all the gifts in a big box and mailed it to her with the video. 

    I saw a suggestion for Skyping the shower...that would be a great modern day way of doing this, only in real time and you get to interact with them.

    This is a special time for everyone sweetheart...and it's her grandbaby.  If it makes her happy I think you'll benefit from letting her have her way in the long run in this instance.  Now if she wants to invite a group into the delivery room, that's another story!  Good luck and best wishes to your new family.  How exciting! 

  • If its all her friends maybe she is just really excited... don't be embarrased if anyone will be its her and they are her friends! :) I was just stay low key.... let this one go.
  • Well I can see the positions of most people here, either way.  However, YOU as the soon-to-be mother have rights to decide what would be done in your honor.  MIL would likely understand about you being uncomfortable and work with you to arrange a later shower.  It would seem to be a "win-win" that way, whereas in the current plan you would have you feeling odd, maybe some guests feeling odd or offended, and so forth.  Please let us know what comes of it!
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