(Closed) Confused, English girl… why aren’t showers considered rude?

posted 10 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 17
Member
3148 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

I just want to add a little part to this: it’s always nice to see people at the bridal shower who may not be able to make it to the wedding. If feels like they were still part of the celebration.

Post # 18
Member
7294 posts
Busy Beekeeper

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@Mrs.Firefly1: oh yes, that was another reason i had a bridal shower, because for many of my guests i thought it would be the only time i could even celebrate with them since they all couldnt make it to Jamaica.  At the time, i was not planning an AHR.

Post # 19
Hostess
11050 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2011

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@smitty22: Agree.

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@VickyAurea: That’s the way they do things. I actually find all the differences really interesting. I got gifts at my hen/bacherlorette party so I imagine us English brides just have a shower and hen party all on the same night, whereas US brides get to have two parties, good on them I say. As
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smitty22: said it would only be rude “it is rude if you are a bride who ONLY cares about the gifts and not the other aspects of the party.”

Post # 20
Member
1271 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

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@aspasia475: very well said.  i never wanted a shower the first time i got married and didn’t get one.  i don’t want one this time either.

Post # 21
Member
125 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

I think that it does sound rude, but the only reason why it might not be rude, is that its become so culturally accepted and expected. Since it has become such a staple of pre-wedding traditions, everyone expects that before her wedding there will be a shower that requires bringing gifts. Since they automatically expect it, it doesnt occur to most to think of it as rude. For instance, im pretty sure my estranged child hood friend invited me to her baby shower just to bring a gift, and i dont think thats rude. I dont wanna go since i wont know anyone and it would be awkward, but i’m planning on having coffee with her some time before and bringing a gift then

Post # 22
Member
1692 posts
Bumble bee

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@Mrs.Firefly1:,
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@dynamic_duo: You are right that the fellowship is what makes the whole shower tradition sweet. I think that’s what some girls associate most with the word “shower”, even more than the presents, because from time to time I’ll see a bride posting that her “mom is throwing my shower, but we are asking people not to bring presents.” Mother’s aren’t supposed to throw showers, of course, but if it’s just a different name for a bridal tea, it would be silly to get all fraught over the semantics. I am very fond of the old tradition of the bride’s female relatives inviting their lady friends over to meet the bride (and snoop into her wedding plans).

Of course, nowadays you will also get the tyro etiquette-mavens arguing that it’s wrong to invite anyone to any pre-wedding parties unless they are invited to everything. So if you were to follow that (bad) logic, you wouldn’t get to share even your shower with those who weren’t attending the wedding — not even if those people are perfectly aware that they won’t be able to attend and want to share with you anyway. The logic for this “rule” is that you’ll be collecting gifts from them, but they won’t be being compensated by collecting a free meal from you.  In other words, the “rule” itself is based on a materialistic presumption that the gifts are what its all about.

Part of that is the fault of Peggy Post with her “you must send a gift” rule, but I wonder if some of it isn’t a result of poor self-esteem on the part of those making the rule: that they can’t imagine their hostess might want them just for their company and NOT want that pleasure complicated by worrying about gifts.

Post # 23
Member
135 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

This was an intereting one to me as my fiance is british, and i was trying to explain to his mum and sister about our american traditions of bridal and baby showers.  My mom was throwing my shower and since we re doing a Destination Wedding its nice that people can come to the shower who cant make it the wedding. But ive kept his mum very up to date on what we are doing and all the things my mom has planned, we just have different cultures and just as i didnt understand why they didnt have showers, they dont get why we have them! I dont think theyre rude, i just think theyre misunderstood!! 

Post # 24
Member
724 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

When I got engaged, we had to figure how to the parties because I live 3,000 miles away from my family and my bridal party is in several time zones! My Maid/Matron of Honor (who lives in NY near me) threw my bachelorette party which was a total surprise to me. All I did was give her a guest list and told her what date would probably work best.

For awhile I totally thought I wouldn’t have a bridal shower, because there was no one to host it. But then my Maid/Matron of Honor talked to one of my bridesmaids and she offered to host one the week of the wedding (when I’m back in town). So I was like “cool!” I’m pretty stoked about having one, not just because I’ll get presents, but because it’s more one-on-one time with my friends who I don’t really get to see. If a “bridal shower” doesn’t end up working out, then we’re going to do like a simple girl’s night out a few days before the wedding. My main goal is just to see my friends!

My mom was all like “well how can they afford to bring a gift to the bridal shower and the wedding so close together?” I had to tell her that it’s bringing presents to a wedding that is not required. Obviously a bridal shower is about “showering” the bride with gifts, but not the wedding. So I don’t think it’s asking people to do more than what they’re comfortable. And if they don’t want to buy me something then I guess they just won’t come.

Post # 25
Member
724 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

When I got engaged, we had to figure how to the parties because I live 3,000 miles away from my family and my bridal party is in several time zones! My Maid/Matron of Honor (who lives in NY near me) threw my bachelorette party which was a total surprise to me. All I did was give her a guest list and told her what date would probably work best.

For awhile I totally thought I wouldn’t have a bridal shower, because there was no one to host it. But then my Maid/Matron of Honor talked to one of my bridesmaids and she offered to host one the week of the wedding (when I’m back in town). So I was like “cool!” I’m pretty stoked about having one, not just because I’ll get presents, but because it’s more one-on-one time with my friends who I don’t really get to see. If a “bridal shower” doesn’t end up working out, then we’re going to do like a simple girl’s night out a few days before the wedding. My main goal is just to see my friends!

My mom was all like “well how can they afford to bring a gift to the bridal shower and the wedding so close together?” I had to tell her that it’s bringing presents to a wedding that is not required. Obviously a bridal shower is about “showering” the bride with gifts, but not the wedding. So I don’t think it’s asking people to do more than what they’re comfortable. And if they don’t want to buy me something then I guess they just won’t come.

Post # 26
Member
724 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

When I got engaged, we had to figure how to the parties because I live 3,000 miles away from my family and my bridal party is in several time zones! My Maid/Matron of Honor (who lives in NY near me) threw my bachelorette party which was a total surprise to me. All I did was give her a guest list and told her what date would probably work best.

For awhile I totally thought I wouldn’t have a bridal shower, because there was no one to host it. But then my Maid/Matron of Honor talked to one of my bridesmaids and she offered to host one the week of the wedding (when I’m back in town). So I was like “cool!” I’m pretty stoked about having one, not just because I’ll get presents, but because it’s more one-on-one time with my friends who I don’t really get to see. If a “bridal shower” doesn’t end up working out, then we’re going to do like a simple girl’s night out a few days before the wedding. My main goal is just to see my friends!

My mom was all like “well how can they afford to bring a gift to the bridal shower and the wedding so close together?” I had to tell her that it’s bringing presents to a wedding that is not required. Obviously a bridal shower is about “showering” the bride with gifts, but not the wedding. So I don’t think it’s asking people to do more than what they’re comfortable. And if they don’t want to buy me something then I guess they just won’t come.

Post # 27
Member
883 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I like showers because they are an excuse for everyone to get together and play games and talk wedding. It is a fun atmosphere and exciting. Also, I love attending them and bringing a present and having it appreciated in person rather than just getting a generic thank you note post wedding.

Post # 28
Member
2373 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

I’m American and I’ve always felt showers are a bit off. They don’t bother me, to each their own, but I was never interested in having one. Back when I was a kid showers were very different- more of a social gathering than anything else.

Post # 29
Member
410 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I’m having a shower, and to be honest I hadn’t thought twice about it. Where I am from, and amongst my close circle of family and friends, it would raise a lot of eyebrows if a person did not have a shower. My mom is hosting mine. She is an only child, so I don’t have aunts on her side. My dad has one sister who is older and has health issues, and Maid/Matron of Honor lives on the other side of the country. Again though, this is not something that I ever thought twice about. I have been to a lot of showers that were hosted by the MOB. I am exicted about my shower. It will be the one of the few times this summer that I will see a lot of my family before the wedding, because summer is such a crazy time for everyone.

I think, as with a lot of things concerning weddings, the way it is percieved varies from region to region. Sure it is antiquated tradition that has become overblown over time, but then so have weddings in general. It is up to the people hosting the events to keep it at a level that they, and their guests, are comfortable with.

 

Post # 30
Member
460 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

I see it as a fun way to hang out with the ladies of your life and celebrate the upcoming wedding, especially if many of those ladies cant make it to the wedding!

Post # 31
Member
1051 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2011

I loved my shower and found that it was a great opportunity to get together with friends and family who couldn’t make it to the wedding. We were getting married an hour or so out of town and a lot of our older family members and family friends couldn’t make the drive at night to come to the wedding. They would have been absolutely offended if we hadn’t had a shower for them to come to because they wanted to celebrate with us as well! My faux auntie hosted mine and the only thing I did was provide her with the guest list. This was really helpful since she didnt know which friends and family members would be in town at that time and which family friends would want to come since they couldn’t make the wedding. 

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