The Case of the Missing Thank You Notes

A little courtesy goes a long way when it comes to following up on your bridal shower

I have been told that we are not responsible for the actions of our grown children — and that holds true for stepchildren as well!

The mother of a local bride asks…
“I was happy to plan and host a bridal shower for my stepdaughter. (I’m also contributing to the wedding.) Yet it’s been months, and she has yet to acknowledge the gifts she received. Should I send out thank you notes for her? Should I say something to her? I don’t want to make an enemy, but I’m a little concerned about this lack of proper behavior.”

The Wedding Guru says…
Absolutely do not send the thank you notes for her. It’s her responsibility and it’s not appropriate for you to do them. What you can do is confirm with any friends and family you speak to that your stepdaughter received their gifts. You might want to apologize on your stepdaughter’s behalf and explain that you can only rack it up to her being swamped with wedding plans.

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Then, in the most delicate way that you can, talk to your stepdaughter about the problem. In order to keep your good relationship, I suggest that you offer to help in some way. Does she need stamps? Blank thank you notes? Can you take the notes to the post office for her? Perhaps setting realistic goals with her (i.e., a certain number of notes each day) would help. Explain that, in this case, it’s better late than never. If she doesn’t send them out, she will be all the more embarrassed at the wedding.

Got more questions? Write to me at

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