Post # 1
I know I’m going to be in the minority on this, but I’m not a fan of wedding showers. My FMIL asked to throw me one, but I declined. However, she really wanted to do something for me and said she wanted her friends to meet me (she lives in a different town than me), and I thought that was a nice sentiment, so I agreed to a luncheon with no gifts (isn’t that just a shower?). At a later conversation, she tried to bring gifts up again, but I again insisted on no gifts.
Well I just received an invitation to a “wedding luncheon in honor of ____” with my registry information on the bottom. I think this has effectively turned into a shower. When I spoke to her about it, I expressed my concern but her response was that she didn’t have to send me an invitation, and then I wouldn’t have known. Also, she said that all her friends insisted that they were bringing gifts anyway.
We have a good relationship (other than this), so it was very surprising to me that she would go behind my back and have invitations printed with registry info even though I told her twice not to. She also didn’t tell me until after I received the invitation, so it was clearly too late to do anything about it.
What do I do now? I think cancelling it would be more damage to our relationship than its worth. I know most people will tell me to suck it up and just go and deal with it, but I really dislike showers and forced gift giving (from people who have never met me) and making people sit around and watch me open gifts that I picked out for myself. I’ve been super unhappy and anxious about this, and I don’t see why I should have to do something that makes me so unhappy. If I was neutral on it, I would just go through with it – but this makes me miserable.
Can I tell her that I don’t want to open gifts? With no gifts, it goes back to a luncheon, which I’m happy to do AND it’s what it officially said on the invitation. I don’t want her guests to feel bad if they bring a gift and I don’t open it in front of them, but that’s exactly why I said no gifts to begin with, so I think this is her (FMIL) problem, and she can let them know in advance. Or am I stuck doing this thing that I hate?
Post # 3
How far in advance is this planned? If it’s very soon, people might have already purchased gifts and it might be too late to change. If there’s a lot of time left, I’d talk to your FMIL and see if she can tell her friends “no gifts”.
I think you should just sit down with/call up your FMIL and have a good heart-to-heart. Maybe she doesn’t realize that you really dislike the idea of a shower, and is under the impression that you just didn’t want to “impose on” anyone or force people to give you gifts. It could all just be a big misunderstanding, and she just thought that she was helping! 🙂
If you still decide to go through with it, just know that it probably won’t be as bad as you think. My family (mother and sister) throwed a shower for me and invited a lot of their friends that I didn’t know too well. I thought it would be terribly awkward, but ended up having a lot of fun. Since you’re doing a luncheon, the focus won’t be entirely on gifts and the whole unwrapping presents thing shouldn’t take up very much time. Or, you could always just say that you want to unwrap the gifts later with your FI, and that you are so thankful for their generosity.
Good luck with whatever happens! 🙂
Post # 4
How did you expect to get gifts off of your registry (or not)otherwise?
Post # 5
I would think of the long tern relationship with your MIL before I made any decision. I think you may do irreparable harm by cancelling the shower and potentially embarassing her in front of her friends.
She did go against your wishes, but it may be one of those generational things. She may have been to tons of showers for her friends’ children and now they want to reciprocate by gifting you at your shower.
Count me in with those who say “Plaster a smile on your face, go to the shower, thank the ladies profusely, and enjoy their gifts.”
Post # 6
Here’s a little piece of advice– Try to be as understanding and as flexible as possible as you can with your mother in law if you want a happy marriage and a happy husband.
A few years back, my MIL and I had a minor disagreement about something. That put my husband (who is an only child) in a really bad spot.
Life is much easier if you pick your battles and learn to let stuff (especially minor stuff like someone throwing a party for you) and just move on about it.
*If this were YOUR mother who was throwing a shower you did not want, my advice would be different. Since this is your MIL, just go with the flow. I also share your sentiment on the hating of showers– they are lame gift grabs, but this is something that will make your MIL happy. I wouldn’t make waves if I were you. This is just my solemn advice….
Post # 7
I would go with the “you want to unwrap gifts later with your fiance” tactic. Or else BRING him, and let him do the gift unwrapping while you lurk in the background.