I'm a FTM and have somewhat recently moved back to my hometown. That said I literally have zero girlfriends here I would feel comfortable inviting to a shower. My mother is over the moon though about throwing me a shower. I was hesitant but agreed. I'll have family driving up here from about 3 hours away and my best friend who lives about 3 1/2 hrs away. Other than that it will be mostly my moms friends, my stepmom and stepsister and SIL. My mother wanted to have it in her house (where I am living), and she wanted to cook everything herself. My mom is a TERRIBLE cook. Terrible. So I offered to cook if that's what she wanted. She said yes and brought to me the most willynilly menu ever. Chicken wings and sandwiches and meatballs and lasagna and dips and cheese trays and you name it. So I started looking up simpler more cohesive shower menu ideas and started to learn the etiquette and 'rules' behind showers and how rude it would be to do a lot of the things my mom was planning. Thankfully about that time my SIL and brother stepped up and asked to help. I feel so grateful for everything her and my brother have done lately. They booked a really lovely place. They told me to step away from the cooking,lol. They sent me a few samples of invites to choose from(my mom had kept telling me I had to send them out). They took care of getting most of the addresses. They've been amazing! However, my mom is still on this I'm the number one host kick. And she keeps trying to involve me to the point where she has ruined some surprises! She has told me gifts that people got me, including my cousin, my brother and SIL, and one of her work friends. She keeps showing me everything she's buying for decorations. Her decorations are, like her menu, allll over the place! There are a million baby themes to choose from at stores and she has not just a little of everything, but A LOT of everything. And for some reason she has an affinity for those little red plastic baskets fried seafood comes in, and stockpiled some for the shower. She is taking her old wine glasses to paint on them the date of the baby shower for the ladies. She is asking my SIL to put the book instead of card on invite. Every few days she'll randomly tell me that she is inviting another random friend of hers. She has shown me a ton of tacky 'prizes' for game winners (even though my SIL asked and I told her that just a couple of the less awkward games, if there are any, would be more than enough). She wants everyone to get a prize, one of her old mismatched wine glasses, and the little gift I was planning on making. Seems like a lot. Just, pretty much, if it were up to my mom this would be tacky as all hell. I know my brother and SIL know how my mom can get overwhelming excited in these situations, however, to what extent are they aware is what I'm worried about. My mother is making a lot of 'klassy' decisions over here, and many of them seem very gift grabby, should I let SIL know in some way or just keep my mouth shut? They are doing so much already I feel bratty about complaining. I feel like if my mom wasn't incessantly trying to involve me and get me to do this or that or informing me of what she was doing or showing me all her decorations she's buying, then it wouldn't stress me out. Come time for the shower and I might not even notice or care about some of these things. Maybe. Anywho, what do ya'll experts got to say? I've lurked in this board for a minute now and hope you can steer me in a good direction.
Re: Long baby shower rant/advice? Long. Very long.
But I will say- you don't want to be involved but yet you clearly have opinions. Nothing wrong with that, but you need to decide "do I want to be involved or not?" and then proceed from there.
In the end, what your guests are going to remember is the overall experience - good food, having fun seeing you, and talking to one another. They aren't going to remember the decorations or if there were red baskets there or.... what have you. If they get a mismatched wine glass, they'll probably laugh about it and tuck it away in a corner of their cabinet. or even just throw it away. this isn't your concern.
I've defiantly been using the 'talk to SIL' line a lot, seemingly to no avail. But obviously we can't control what people say.
I would not mind being involved, but I unsure as to what extent is appropriate. I've defiantly attempted to take a full step back because I feel like my involvement was the overwhelming majority.
Lol, the last paragraph is what I needed to hear. I just feel uncomfortable coming off gift grabby but like you said, in the end guests will hopefully just remember a good time. I guess maybe being so close and hearing about it all the time is what stresses me. Also like you said, I should probably just leave SIL alone about it. Lol.
Thanks for the great advice and not judging me too harshly
As for the menu, it just seemed like a whole lot of food. I've done catering and have a good idea of how much food you need at gatherings. I wouldn't mind tacos paired with lasagna. I love it all. However, we simply don't have the time or money to be preparing such a wide array of dishes. This is a baby shower, not a wedding. I would rather have some sort of direction so that we aren't left last minute with an overwhelming hodge podge of heavy and half tended to foods.
I am more than capable of dually not necessarily liking a choice of decorations while at the same time not having "requirements". Lol. But like I replied to PP, in the end guests will probably defiantly not mind and because I'm around it so much I have a too-close opionated worry about them.
It makes me laugh a little that I might have come across as someone requiring a perfectly matched shower when in fact I was extremely hesitant to accept a shower in the first place. I would have loved a small, close family only gathering. Nothing fancy, no decorations and some tasty food. I am so thankful that anyone even offered to host one for me, however it is very overwhelming. There will be so many more of my mothers friends, many of whom I'm not necessarily familiar with, and I am terribly quiet at gatherings like this. Lol. I usually end up always escaping and hanging out away from the party. I'm not good at being a focus of attention, but I'll defiantly have to suck it up so I can really show my appreciation.
You are so right though, my mom is just really really excited. We are poler opposites and while I'm okay with just the few close people, she wants to shout invites from the roof! Lol. It's really sweet, but nerve-racking and I think your underlying point was that I need to lay off and not be so critical. And you're right on that! Maybe place my concerns in more productive, nicer styles.
I think I might have gotten a little carried away looking too deep into the ideas of etiquette surrounding baby showers.