The premise behind wedding showers hasn’t really changed much over the years. It’s still a lovely way to have an intimate get-together and celebrate the beginning of a new family. There are some alternatives, of course — such as a coed shower — but the guidelines remain the same.
A Hudson Valley mother-of-the-bride writes: “I’m a bit confused. I just got an invitation from a dear friend, the mother of a prospective bride. The invitation was for a bridal shower that she’s throwing for her daughter. My daughter is getting married later this year and I’m under the assumption that it’s not correct etiquette for me to host her shower. Have the rules changed? Am I mistaken?”
(Answer on next page)
Dear mother-of-the-bride: According to proper etiquette, a shower should only be hosted by friends and is inappropriate for a relative. Everyone invited to the shower must be invited to the wedding. Under no circumstances should anyone (e.g., mother of the bride) put pressure on the attendants and coerce them to throw a shower. A shower is voluntarily and should not be viewed as a prerequisite for getting married.
If a family member would like to host a party, without presents, for the bride or the couple, that’s fine. (The emphasis here is “no presents.”) I think it outrageous, and I know many will disagree, that the same people are invited to multiple showers. It’s just not fair to expect an engagement gift, several shower gifts, and a wedding gift from the same person.
Readers, what do you think? Write your thoughts below.