Post # 1
I went to my future sister in law’s bridal shower this evening. It was nice, and included a dinner, but when they started opening presents I was bored out of my mind. I guess it’s the point of such an event, showering the bride or couple with gifts, but does that mean opening the gifts in front of everyone is a required part of the shower?
My birthday is close to Christmas, so I usually end up with a few more presents under the tree than the rest of my family, and I have always felt pretty awkward opening a bunch of gifts in front of a group of people.
When it’s my turn, I will smile and fake my way through it if I have to, but would it be so wrong to just take everything home wrapped and open them alongwith my fiance?
Post # 3
I think ou need to smile and bear through it – many guests (particularly aunts, grandmas, etc.) look forward to being able to see you open their gift and hear you gush over it, and would be disappointed to not get to see your reaction. And as you said, it is pretty much the point of a shower!
Post # 4
I feel the exact same way..I cant stand sitting through watching people open their presents and considered skipping that at my own shower to save people the boredom..but then yeah i started to think maybe people would be offended if they were not able to see me open it so Im going to have to grin and bare it as well
Post # 5
had my shower already and the gift opening part was as awkward as I thought it would be. Noone cared about my irons and cups, especially since 99% of my gifts were of the registry. People were having their own conversations or just looked bored. I have heard of displaying all the gifts unwrapped on a long table so that the curious guests can see, and you will just have to make a point to walk around the table throughout the party to acknowledge the gifts and thank people. Would the person throwing the shower feel comfortable doing that? I have never seen it done (only attended 4 showers), but I know somebody who has and they said it was the best shower ever. Good luck!
Post # 6
@IngridWVUalumna: I’ve had this exact same dilemma. I HATE the idea of everyone watching me open gifts because 1) I’m not an in-the-spotlight type of person and 2) it’s so boring. But, as you and the other posters have said, it’s one of those unavoidable things.
A few of my friends had their guests play Bride Bingo (They fill in a bingo card with potential gifts before you start opening. If you open something they wrote down, they cross out that square. First to get a bingo wins a prize.). Surprisingly, the ladies got really into it.
Or, I’ve heard that co-ed showers are popular now. At least your Fiance would be with you to help entertain the people!
Post # 7
I think it’s pretty standard to open the gifts at showers. I like the bingo idea!
Post # 8
As they say, “You’ll just have to suck it up, Buttercup”. It would be the height of rudeness to have people invited to your shower, then just take the gifts home unopened. You might as well just ask them top courier the gifts to your home and not have a shower.
It can be uncomfortable to be the center of attention, but you will likely find that many of the guests are socializing while you open the gifts, so not every eye will be on you all the time.
Post # 9
Thanks for the input, bees!
It’s not so much that I hate being in the spotlight, I just feel spoiled being the only one opening presents. Maybe I can have some sort of game so other people have to unwrap something too. Like give everyone a small wrapped package and with fun facts about my fiance and I, so for each gift I open someone else opens one, and reads off their fact…
I just don’t want people to be bored.
Post # 10
I had two showers. One I didn’t open and the other I did. I really wish I would have opened them at the first, because I think people like watching your expression when you open gifts (even though, yes – it can be boring as all get out for guests).
Post # 11
I disagree, I think you are good to go if you don’t want to open in front of everyone. What we’ve been doing in the family – have a note (on an easel, in a picture frame, etc) saying that you want to “focus your time with your guests” and then add that if someone wants their gift open to find you before they leave and open it with THAT person. Figure out the wording that workds best for you.
I can find the wording we used for my SIL’s baby shower, but it may be a while.
Post # 12
I feel the same way. I know I’ll feel awkward opening presents in front of the guests. I’m also concerned about guests being bored. I’ve only attended one shower and the Bride took 45 minutes to open the gifts.
I’m doing a high tea for my shower and will only have the space for 2 and a half hours. With the high tea and a few games there wont be much time, oh and I’m having 80 people attend my shower. I would much rather spend time talking with people than sitting and opening gifts!!
I like the clear wrapping paper idea, that way myself and the guests can see who got what. It will be a much quicker way to get through the gift opening process, oh and less mess too. 🙂
Post # 13
Yeah, I think you just have to do it. I think there’s a possibility that guests (especially older ones) would be offended if you didn’t open their gift. You could always do the Bingo gift game or something to take some of the attention away!
Post # 14
@pokey_dc: open it with THAT person
This is what I want to do. I don’t think most people care to see what other people brought ohhing and awhing. So my plan was to open gifts with the person, take a picture with them and then display the open presents on a table. I think thats a great compromise, no???
Post # 15
You absolutely are under no obligation to do anything you are not comfortable with. If that includes not opening gifts if front of everyone, then your guests have to respect that.
That being said, it would be nice to include an insert with the shower invitations saying that those who wish to, are welcome to stay and open gifts past the alotted party time (maybe at your mom’s house, etc, etc) This way you can enjoy the time with family and friends while the crowd has a chance to thin out…leaving those who really care about seeing you open your new china. An alternative is that people wrap in clear cellophane.
Good luck! I’m sure it will turn out for the best!
Post # 16
A friend of mine was telling me about a shower that she threw for her sister. In the invitation, there was a cute poem (I wish I had it to share with you!) that basically told everyone to wrap their gifts in clear cellophane. The bride-to-be was able to see the gift and acknowledge it during the gift “opening” part of the shower, but she never actually unwrapped them. it saved time, it wasn’t messy to clean up, and she didn’t have to worry about putting things back in boxes after opening them! So great!
She also told me another idea: she went to a shower where during the gift opening time, every single guest grabbed a gift off the table (not their own). Each person got to open somebody ELSE’s gift, and then they had to write down on a big easel who the gift was from and what it was. I’m sure you can do many varieties of this and incorporate some more fun things. The best part – it’s QUICK! Everyone opens gifts at the same time 🙂