(Closed) My boss is throwing me a shower at work — but none of my coworkers are invited

posted 4 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
361 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I had a destination wedding with only 30 people invited (none were my coworkers) They still wanted to throw me a party, and made tons of food and got me a few gifts from everyone. It was fine. They enjoyed themselves just as much as I did..  my coworkers love any excuse to have a potluck and give gifts. I actually ordered and sent them pizza and salad the following Friday (while I was out of town) with some flowers and a thank you card.. they loved it and sent me many pizza eating selfies and well wishes for my wedding the next day! LOL

Just let them do what they want, obviously they already know theyre not invited to your wedding.. just be appreciative, and maybe bring in donuts or order pizza that day (or the next day) for everyone as a thank you. 🙂

Post # 3
431 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

This is pretty normal where I work. As a matter of fact, I work from home as well most of my coworkers and was given an awesome virtual shower. Everyone chipped in to give me a very generous gift card to use on my honeymoon (we went to NYC and used it for dinner and a show).

Post # 4
1260 posts
Bumble bee

Word of mouth. Do you have a close coworker/friend you could deputize to spread the “no gifts” message?

Post # 5
441 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

I guess how to handle it would depend on the office culture. The way presents work in my office is that they are generally organised by management – people very rarely take money out of their own pockets to give to coworkers, even for events like baby showers/weddings. I would just let it go, otherwise it risks that you seem too fixated on whether presents will be involved or not. You already asked your boss not to have presents included, I don’t think there’s much else you can do.

Besides, if it’s happening during work hours people may attend or they might decline, but I think their workload/schedule will have more to do with it than whether the invitation said “no gifts” or not.

Post # 6
9575 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

A shower thrown by your coworkers (or church group etc) who are completely aware theyre not invited to the wedding is the one exception to the only wedding guests thing. I wouldnt worry about it.

Post # 7
1887 posts
Buzzing bee

Is this like an actual formal event at a restaurant or something, or just a bunch of people getting together in the conference room at work for cake? If it’s the latter, they are probably just going to chip in for a gift card and it won’t be a big deal.

Post # 8
6977 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: April 2016

Work showers are pretty much the exception to the rule. I know normally you don’t invite anyone to any wedding-related events that’s also not invited to the wedding, but a work shower is different. My work always does this stuff for anyone getting married or having a baby. Instead of each person bringing individual gifts, usually someone just collects money from everyone and they all sign a card. It’s basically an excuse to have cake at work! 🙂

Post # 9
13615 posts
Honey Beekeeper

Normally, one doesn’t invite people to a pre-wedding event who are not also invited to the wedding. A work shower, generally thrown by people who are aware of limitations to your guest list, is an approved exception. 

A shower is, by definition, about gifts, and guests are obliged to bring something. If you don’t want gifts, it shouldn’t be called a shower, since that’s not what it is. 

Post # 10
5154 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2010

This is pretty normal at my workplace.

I had a small Destination Wedding wedding (under 20) without any coworkers invited and the social committee threw a surprise shower. I actually don’t like showers (or focus on me), and would have said no if asked, and did not have any outside of work for a reason, but the thought was still nice. They made it a “home improvement theme” and I received a handful of gift cards for home improvement stores. They also threw another shower not long after for another woman who was not inviting any coworkers with a baking theme. My coworkers like to do things like that, I have learned – throw parties during lunch/after hours, put together a potluck, chip in for a gift or use social fund money, etc. It is not my thing but eh, everyone there knew they were not invited/coming to my wedding and were just excited to celebrate anyway.

In my experience for work events, usually the gifts are “chipped in” for and it is not mandatory, or it comes from an entertainment/social budget.

Post # 11
4499 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Yeah, I wouldn’t worry. People will probably chip in for a gift card; that’s what people do at my office. It’s ok. 

Post # 13
10605 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

Your title just made me think of you and your boss alone, your boss sitting across the table in a party hat staring you down for an hour while you eat cake.

Post # 14
91 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2016

I think it’s so nice your boss to have a work shower for you! I wouldn’t keep reminding people to not give you a gift or make mention of it. If someone wants to give you something they will and they should! Enjoy it!  

Post # 15
15 posts
  • Wedding: September 2016

I am sure co-workers will understand your boss is driving the bus on this one. How do you say no, right? I thought the earlier suggestions about sending some kind of thank-you food is an awesome idea, and I will do that if I am in the same situation (I am having small destination wedding, no co-workers invited, none expected it.) My boss keeps asking where I’m registered, so I told her.

Also, the suggestion to have a close colleague spread the unofficial word is a good idea. If it’s not at work, people will probably be paying for their meal. Anyway, if anyone feels out of sorts, I am sure it would be toward the boss. But I bet they’re excited for you!

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