Should I throw a shower instead of MIL? — The Bump
Baby Showers

Should I throw a shower instead of MIL?

My SIL is expecting her first child this fall. She really wants a shower but cannot afford to do it herself. My MIL said she would do it, which is the worst idea ever. Some backstory: my MIL is a self centered woman who finds every opportunity to make everything about her. My mom was going to throw us a bridal shower last summer but my MIL insisted she throw one as well so we had two. The one MIL threw had people who were not invited to my wedding because she "wanted HER friends there." I was so embarrassed but MIL paraded around like she was the greatest event coordinator ever.

She is doing the same thing to SIL now, demanding that these random friends of hers be allowed at the shower. SIL does not want to seem gift grabby and certainly does not want people she does not know to be at her shower. We both understand the fact that MIL has a say if she is paying, but we have seen what happens when she throws showers. I cannot convey just how BSC she is. 

I feel bad so I said that I would try to get SILs friends to join with me and help throw the shower, just to take part of it out of MILs crazy hands. But I do not want to make MIL mad. How can we help stop the tension between MIL and SIL without seeming like we are completely taking over? 

Re: Should I throw a shower instead of MIL?

  • If you want to throw her a shower, and can afford to do it, then do it.
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  • My MIL is throwing me a shower that is just her friends (most all I haven't met and DH and I have been married 9 years). 

    For a variety of reasons, I have decided to go along with it. Smile and nod. It is important to her. I can suck it up for an afternoon. She is throwing it when the baby is a couple months old.

    Most people aren't comfortable being the center of attention and/or being at a party where they don't know a lot of the people.  

    If you want to throw a shower, then you should. Your SIL could have two showers (so MIL can host one with her friends).

    The way I figure it, no one is going to think your SIL is being gift grabby. If MIL is throwing the shower and inviting her friends, it was clearly MIL's idea (how would a MTB know to invite strangers? she wouldn't). It is MIL's friends, so she knows what offends her friends and what doesn't. Also the friends know MIL, so they know her personality and what to expect.

     


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  • Oh I 100% agree she should not throw her own. She basically said "I want a shower" and picked a date and basically waited to see who would step up. I was all against this until I saw for myself how awful MIL was being to her (like I said, my MIL Is a crazy woman). I also just found out that SILs best friend is already making the cake and invitations so she is already sort of involved.  Also, MIL took out a loan to pay for this (which I think is RIDICULOUS but again, she's nuts) so she is still paying for most of the shower. I guess pretty much I just want some sane friends of SIL to help deflect some of the responsibilities off MIL. 
  • When my BIL's wife was pregnant I suggested to my SIL that she and I host a baby shower for them during a family reunion weekend when all 3 siblings would be back where they grew up. Unfortunately SIL mentioned this to her mom (my MIL) so she overrode SIL on a lot of decisions like invites, location etc.

    I just held my ground on stuff, MIL wants to have the glory of doing it all and footing the bill, but the truth is she is lazy and will cheap out at the last minute or make super tacky decisions or insist on doing something only to farm the task out to someone else at the last minute. 

    I would say the more you can take over from your MIL the better.

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  • imagequeenbone:

    When my BIL's wife was pregnant I suggested to my SIL that she and I host a baby shower for them during a family reunion weekend when all 3 siblings would be back where they grew up. Unfortunately SIL mentioned this to her mom (my MIL) so she overrode SIL on a lot of decisions like invites, location etc.

    I just held my ground on stuff, MIL wants to have the glory of doing it all and footing the bill, but the truth is she is lazy and will cheap out at the last minute or make super tacky decisions or insist on doing something only to farm the task out to someone else at the last minute. 

    I would say the more you can take over from your MIL the better.

     

    this is exactly how MIL is! She will volunteer to throw a shower and then make it the tackiest event ever. My poor SIL is so stressed about this she is becoming physically sick. MIL even demanded the baby get a certain middle name as well. Just more reasons I want to help her out. However, she had a gender reveal party two weeks ago and demanded we all supply the food since she couldn't afford it. I was VERY upset about that but even that time MIL dictated what everyone was bringing.  

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    imageCowgirlK39:
    Oh I 100% agree she should not throw her own. She basically said "I want a shower" and picked a date and basically waited to see who would step up. I was all against this until I saw for myself how awful MIL was being to her (like I said, my MIL Is a crazy woman). I also just found out that SILs best friend is already making the cake and invitations so she is already sort of involved.  Also, MIL took out a loan to pay for this (which I think is RIDICULOUS but again, she's nuts) so she is still paying for most of the shower. I guess pretty much I just want some sane friends of SIL to help deflect some of the responsibilities off MIL. 

    That sounds like one hell of a hot mess, starting out with an entitled, demanding MTB.

    If it were me, I'd attend and bring a gift and leave it at that.   

    Yeah, agreed I'd stay far, far away from this entire mess. I don't typically welcome drama on myself so my MO is always to steer clear. 

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  • imageCowgirlK39:
    imagequeenbone:

    When my BIL's wife was pregnant I suggested to my SIL that she and I host a baby shower for them during a family reunion weekend when all 3 siblings would be back where they grew up. Unfortunately SIL mentioned this to her mom (my MIL) so she overrode SIL on a lot of decisions like invites, location etc.

    I just held my ground on stuff, MIL wants to have the glory of doing it all and footing the bill, but the truth is she is lazy and will cheap out at the last minute or make super tacky decisions or insist on doing something only to farm the task out to someone else at the last minute. 

    I would say the more you can take over from your MIL the better.

     

    this is exactly how MIL is! She will volunteer to throw a shower and then make it the tackiest event ever. My poor SIL is so stressed about this she is becoming physically sick. MIL even demanded the baby get a certain middle name as well. Just more reasons I want to help her out. However, she had a gender reveal party two weeks ago and demanded we all supply the food since she couldn't afford it. I was VERY upset about that but even that time MIL dictated what everyone was bringing.  


    Wait, the same MTB just "threw" herself a gender reveal party where her guests had to bring food? Yeah, she is sounding pretty entitled and like the last thing she needs is another party. Offer to help with the existing party if you feel like you must, but I would just stay out of it and be like any other guest who just shows up.
  • Would the MIL even let you take over?  Chances are, her people would still be invited and your SIL would be in the same boat.
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  • Oh, so you're the one whose SIL assigned Pizza to bring to her gender reveal.

    Honestly, I wouldn't touch a shower with this family with a ten foot pole.  Just let MIL do whatever she wants.  The loan part is ridiculous, but it isn't all that uncommon for a MTB to not know everyone at her shower because they are friends of her mom or MIL.  IT happens.   There were a few people at my shower I didn't recognize because they are friends with my mom. 

    Don't throw your SIL another shower because that is what it will end up being, an additional shower on top of what your MIL does.  Certainly don't ask her friends to help.  That would put them in a terribly awkward position. 

  • Do we have the same MIL?

    The same thing happened to me at a wedding shower my MIL threw and I felt very weird around these people who were not even coming to the wedding. Told her "no thank you" very firmly to a baby shower so she threw a surprise shower and the weirdness continued....

    There's just no stopping some people.

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  • Two things

    1) Your SIL really wants a shower.  As this is her presumably her mother, she knows what she is getting. 

    2) If MIL is throwing a shower for "her friends," rather than for SIL, then her friends will already know about MIL and her ... idiosyncrasies. (nice way of saying she's nuts.) Don't bother stressing with this.

    3) Stay with SIL. Keep her calm. See if she needs anything. Chances are MIL wants the attention, and SIL will be able to enjoy a cursory if not symbolic role.

    4) If money is an issue, consider having a dinner at a yours or a friend's home where you enjoy each other without gifts. A shower doesn't have to be a community event. It can just be people getting together to support a new mother and let her know she is loved. If your SIL doesn't appreciate that, then there is more of her MIL at play than either of you are willing to admit.

    5) Stay away from the crazy; don't interfere. Keep SIL in good spirits before and during the event. After, it will be another story to share. Your attitude dictates if it will be a fun story or not. 

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