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willwrite4food
06-15-2007, 06:40 AM
I'm writing an article for iparenting.com on whether or not expectant fathers should attend baby showers. Does Dad have every right to be there or should it be a ladies only affair?

The article will be presented in debate format. I will have the opinions of one mom who is for dad being at the shower and the opposing viewpoint. I am interviewing a pop culture expert for his take on the subject.

I still need to find a woman who doesn't believe men should attend the baby shower. Please let me know if you are interested in presenting your viewpoint.

In addition, I need some input from dads for a sidebar to the article. Yes, no, whatever you believe, I'm interested!

My deadline is June 25. Thanks!

Haggis
06-15-2007, 06:41 AM
No.

Thank you.

Jersey Chick
06-15-2007, 06:43 AM
I guess he has a right, but the question really is, why would he want to be there? The only one who ever really wants to go to a shower is the guest of honor ;)

I think most guys would be bored out of their heads, or really grossed out when all of the birthing horror stories and newborn horror stories start flying - which they inevitably do.

Nah - men are better off going and playing golf. They should only come back when it's time to load the car. ;)

asorum
06-15-2007, 06:45 AM
No.

No...

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 06:51 AM
It's his kid too, why shouldn't he go? I'd hope he'd be involved in the raising of his own child.

Desert Author
06-15-2007, 06:53 AM
For the most part, this would be something that men get dragged to. In certain cases, with newly weds and young couples, the man might be eager to attend just to be with his wife, but after 33 years, I'd break a leg to avoid it, even though I'm sure the intent is meaningful.

alleycat
06-15-2007, 06:54 AM
For most of the ones I've seen, the expectant dad makes an appearance at some points and then quickly disappeared (to his relief). I mean, a guy has a hard time oogling over baby blankets and booties.

As far as I'm concerned they can stop inviting single guys (me) to bridal teas. Yes, yes, I'll send a wedding gift . . . no need to invite me to a tea.

Dancre
06-15-2007, 07:05 AM
I guess he has a right, but the question really is, why would he want to be there? The only one who ever really wants to go to a shower is the guest of honor ;)

I think most guys would be bored out of their heads, or really grossed out when all of the birthing horror stories and newborn horror stories start flying - which they inevitably do.

Nah - men are better off going and playing golf. They should only come back when it's time to load the car. ;)


AMen!! It's not the same when the guys are around. And I don't think the guys really think looking at ten different baby socks is really that charming. I think it is, but that's just me.

kim

JJ Cooper
06-15-2007, 07:10 AM
Women = Baby shower.
Men = Pub or Sporting event.

JJ

RLB
06-15-2007, 07:31 AM
Well I'm at the age where I'm invited to a baby shower once every month or two. Sure, the man has a right to be there, but there is no way I would wish that on my husband. I find them a little dull myself. There's only so many times I can play the guess-that-baby-food game and ooh and ahh over little clothes. (I mean, they're cute, and I'm happy to give gifts to my friends, but come on) These days, I need a high-concept (read: enticing menu) shower to get me interested. Like the chocolate and cheese fondue shower I went to a few months back.

Rosamund
06-15-2007, 11:44 AM
In my opinion, no.

I think that a baby shower is the time for the expectant mum's female friends to pass on their collective wisdom about pregnancy and the process of giving birth. In my experience, having a male present interrupts the female-to-female dynamic and flat-lines the process.

If the husband wants to be involved, I would suggest a separate event where both he and his wife can discuss the care etc of babies with other couples.

Of course, there is nothing stopping the husband from gathering with his mates at the time of the baby shower and discussing pregnancy and birth from the male point of view. :)

I believe that some events are single-sex only, and a baby shower is one of them.

poetinahat
06-15-2007, 12:20 PM
I don't see any reason why baby showers have to be women-only. Actually, I kind of resent, as a man, being excluded from anything important related to the birth of my child.

I always imagined baby showers as a bit of fun, rather than some sort of rite of passage. So it was perfectly natural not being involved. But even in that case, I don't see why the ladies-only aspect should be sacrosanct.

if I'd thought that it was something significant in preparing for birth and parenthood, I would insist on being included. Especially if I'm going to be equally responsible for caring for the child.

I guess I just don't have a clear picture of what baby showers are about. It would disturb me to think that there would be important secrets about childbirth that would be hidden from me, the father.

And I sure wouldn't want to be asked to make myself absent at certain points in the pregnancy/childbirth process, then all of a sudden be expected to be there all the time for the unglamorous work.

If it's something important in preparing for parenthood, I'll darned well want to be involved. Just tell me "Hey, it's just a party for the women" and I'll be happy. (And yes, I'll enjoy my last round of golf for the next three years. ;) )

waylander
06-15-2007, 01:04 PM
What's a baby shower?

alleycat
06-15-2007, 01:18 PM
What's a baby shower?
A "party" given for the mother-to-be, with her family and friends. Baby gifts are given, funny little games are played for the entertainment of everyone, some cakes or other foods are served. Most of the time it's just other women who go to the shower, although the dad-to-be might show up when the gifts are unwrapped to thank the givers as well.

JimmyB27
06-15-2007, 01:23 PM
What's a baby shower?

Like a baby bath, but it uses less water.

Astro
06-15-2007, 03:19 PM
I believe like everything it should be a choice made between the two expectant parents. My husband didn't come, nor did I want him to. In my experience baby showers are full of recounted birthing stories and I didn't feel it necessary for him to hear about his sister's,mother's and aunts private parts. Why everywoman thinks you want to hear about their vagina the minute you announce your pregnancy is beyond me.
having said that, the games and itsy, bitsy clothes and even the vagina stories are a part of pregnancy I wouldn't have missed (my mother enjoyed putting on the party so much) but as my husband would have merely endured it why make him?
It's not like he's skipping out on his baby's baptism or anything.

Perks
06-15-2007, 04:42 PM
It seems to be getting much more popular (wisely, I might add) for baby showers to be more of an all out party -- all inclusive. Female only baby showers I found to be a complete bore.

Who ever thought it was a good idea that the first time a man lays eyes on a diaper should be the first time he goes to change one?

But when you start talking about 'rights' and parties, well, way to suck the fun out of the whole event. Scary. If this isn't something relatively easily agreed upon by both parents, I'm predicting a rough transition to familihood.

C.bronco
06-15-2007, 04:56 PM
If the men actually want to be there, then why not? Otherwise, it's most appropriate to have them drinking beer and shooting pool in the basement. They may surface for cake.

alleycat
06-15-2007, 05:00 PM
Maybe men should have a separate baby shower. Say, at a sport bar. the other men could brings gifts . . . like baseballs and kiddie golf clubs and small firearms and such. They could play games such as "How much beer does a condom hold?" and "Final child support payment".

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 05:03 PM
I don't see any reason why baby showers have to be women-only. Actually, I kind of resent, as a man, being excluded from anything important related to the birth of my child.

I always imagined baby showers as a bit of fun, rather than some sort of rite of passage. So it was perfectly natural not being involved. But even in that case, I don't see why the ladies-only aspect should be sacrosanct.

if I'd thought that it was something significant in preparing for birth and parenthood, I would insist on being included. Especially if I'm going to be equally responsible for caring for the child.

I guess I just don't have a clear picture of what baby showers are about. It would disturb me to think that there would be important secrets about childbirth that would be hidden from me, the father.

And I sure wouldn't want to be asked to make myself absent at certain points in the pregnancy/childbirth process, then all of a sudden be expected to be there all the time for the unglamorous work.

If it's something important in preparing for parenthood, I'll darned well want to be involved. Just tell me "Hey, it's just a party for the women" and I'll be happy. (And yes, I'll enjoy my last round of golf for the next three years. ;) )

*sigh* Yes, it's true, all the good ones ARE taken. :D

C.bronco
06-15-2007, 05:03 PM
They do make Nascar baby clothes and accoutrements, now that I think about it.

Oh no! Toonces!

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 05:05 PM
Oh and personally I don't see the point in baby showers although they're catching on here these days too. It's your baby; you pay for its stuff. Same goes for weddings. If I ever got married I wouldn't see the point in gift-giving then, either. I already have everything I need because I already run a home. Seems to me it's a leftover from the days when couples didn't have their own place (either individually or as a couple) before they got hitched. And I sure as hell ain't paying for someone else to clothe their child.

Perks
06-15-2007, 05:09 PM
This is true. Its fun enough, though. A party a few weeks before the baby, when you're feeling whale-ish and unwieldy does make for a boost to the whole waiting around thing.

And presents? Presents are nice. I like buying wedding and baby gifts - and I hate shopping.

C.bronco
06-15-2007, 05:12 PM
But shopping for cute baby things is fun! AND, there's cake. Caaaaaaake
P.S. My sister just found out she's having a boy! :)

PattiTheWicked
06-15-2007, 05:12 PM
I've got to say, for me, being invited to a baby shower is a special form of hell. I'm not a girly girl, and being forced to sit in a room with a bunch of other women going "awwww" and "how darling!" is not my idea of fun. Worse yet is the stupid games -- tying a string around the mom-to-be's belly, or seeing how many other words you can make out of the phrase "diaper genie". As if that wasn't bad enough, all anyone can talk about is their kids, as if childbirth was the defining moment of their entire life.

So I think a better question is really, why the hell would men WANT to attend a baby shower?

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 05:12 PM
Well if I was ever on the bubble (ain't never gonna happen but IF...) I don't want baby presents. I want chocolate, books, Joaquin DVDs and makeup.

Screw the baby, it's not gonna pop out wanting the latest Baby Gap nonsense. Couple of old shawls and some booties, that's your lot.

C.bronco
06-15-2007, 05:17 PM
Everyone you know who's had a baby will be handing you bags of hand-me-down baby clothes (which are usually like new because babies grow very quickly) and crates of baby gear, some assembly required. I give my sister a truckload of stuff every time I see her (she's due in November).
Now that I think about it, I could have used a 5 gallon bucket of Ben & Jerry's ice cream as a shower gift.

oarsman
06-15-2007, 05:53 PM
We had two baby showers. One was for relatives and her friends which I did not attend. The other was thrown by my co-workers at my workplace at the time and we both attended. I enjoyed the food and we didn't play any shower games; We ate lunch and opened gifts.

Last month, I was invited to a baby shower. I was surprised--no, shocked. I sent a gift, but didn't attend. I've heard stories about the games played at these events. Do women really have baby food tasting contests?

C.bronco
06-15-2007, 05:55 PM
tastes like chicken

oarsman
06-15-2007, 06:16 PM
It doesn't look like chicken!

http://g-ec2.images-amazon.com/images/I/21H2DRZ0QQL._AA144_.jpg

Nakhlasmoke
06-15-2007, 06:37 PM
I find the childish games ones boring, but then I don't do that sort of thing. DH was at the first baby-shower, as was my ex-bf, and some other guys.

The second one my belly dance ladies threw, so it was pretty much a grrl-thing.

I think a guy (and indeed, just about anyone) would be bored at the girly stupid-games ones though.

Sassee
06-15-2007, 06:40 PM
I think it's more fun when the guys attend. My husband and I both went to a baby shower, and there were a couple of other men there too, including daddy to be. It didn't destroy the atmosphere, it didn't "ruin" the experience. I thought it was a great change of pace.

Scarlet, peeps have baby showers so they can help out the expecting parents. Yeah sure, all those little clothes and diapers won't last you long, and you might not like all the baby Gap stuff, but that's money you don't have to spend out of your own pocket. It's a gesture of goodwill towards the whole family. Sort of like Christmas, or birthdays. You don't have to get birthday presents, but it's still fun, isn't it? :)

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 06:40 PM
I know I'd rather have a smear test with a car jack and an ice cream scoop than go to a baby shower.

Lyra Jean
06-15-2007, 08:08 PM
Oh and personally I don't see the point in baby showers although they're catching on here these days too. It's your baby; you pay for its stuff. Same goes for weddings. If I ever got married I wouldn't see the point in gift-giving then, either. I already have everything I need because I already run a home. Seems to me it's a leftover from the days when couples didn't have their own place (either individually or as a couple) before they got hitched. And I sure as hell ain't paying for someone else to clothe their child.

When I get married I'm going to have a gift not necessary on the invite. Not that I'm getting married anytime soon. Even though I live with my dad still. Living on your own in Florida is expensive out the wazoo especially if you are under the age of 55. I do have a hope chest and I'm still building it up so when I do get my own place I'll have a lot of the starting stuff like utensils, linens, and whatnot. Not to mention I want to invite my extended family and I don't want them to think that I'm inviting them just to get a present cause in all honesty that is not the case.

The guys could all have their own party when the chicks are having their party or they could make it a mixed event. I don't know I've never been to a baby shower.

Jersey Chick
06-15-2007, 08:18 PM
It's not that I don't think they have the right to be there, I just can't see why they'd want to. This is all based on the men-type people I know, but they'd rather sterilize themselves with a paring knife than sit through a shower.

As for the gifts- it's not just clothes - which are pretty expensive and it takes about 10 minutes for a kid to grow out of them. But car seats, high chairs, playpens, cribs, furniture - it's all crazy-expensive. Never mind bottles, formula, diapers, wipes. Egads, it goes on for days.

And you can always tell the mothers vs the non-mothers (the ones who have no contact with babies.) Mothers give practical clothes, diapers, wipes, powder - that sort of thing.

The ones who have no contact with babies give you the really expensive, absolutely adorable, and totally non-practical outfits that are the height of fashion, and get ruined the first time a baby spits up or the diaper leaks. And that's not a put down, it's just been my experience.

And while there are the feel-good-kodak-moment stories, it usually devolves into who had the worst labor, the sorest boobs, the least amount of sleep. It's fun - gives the mom-to-be something to look forward to. :D

Sandi LeFaucheur
06-15-2007, 08:34 PM
I know I'd rather have a smear test with a car jack and an ice cream scoop than go to a baby shower.

Do you know how difficult it is to laugh with a mouthful of Ryvita? Try it and see!

Scrawler
06-15-2007, 09:31 PM
I've never been to a baby shower with the baby's father or any other men present. Unless you count the dad showing his face, registering shock at the sight of 20 women holding pastel-wrapped gifts, and leaving for the day.

Must everything become PC-unisex these days? Can't we ladies sit around talking about breast pumps, hemorrhoids, and episiotomies in peace?

waylander
06-15-2007, 11:48 PM
A "party" given for the mother-to-be, with her family and friends. Baby gifts are given, funny little games are played for the entertainment of everyone, some cakes or other foods are served. Most of the time it's just other women who go to the shower, although the dad-to-be might show up when the gifts are unwrapped to thank the givers as well.

Why the f##k would any man want to go to one of these?

scarletpeaches
06-15-2007, 11:56 PM
Why the f*** would any woman?

alleycat
06-16-2007, 12:19 AM
Why the f##k would any man want to go to one of these?
That's the point, they wouldn't. In all my life I've never heard a man say, "They're having a baby shower for my wife and I'm not invited! I so wanted to go."

Going to a baby shower for most guys would rank somewhere between spending Superbowl Sunday at Amish Village and root canal.

FloVoyager
06-16-2007, 12:21 AM
Does Dad have every right to be there or should it be a ladies only affair?

A right to be there? Sure. But I've never met a man I think would really want to go to one of these things, anymore than I think most women really want to attend some of the traditionally guys-only affairs.

And just to see what he'd say, I asked my husband, "If I got pregnant and somebody gave me a baby shower, would you like to attend too?" He got a stricken look on his face and said: "Please tell me these are hypothetical questions.":roll:

alleycat
06-16-2007, 12:23 AM
And just to see what he'd say, I asked my husband, "If I got pregnant and somebody gave me a baby shower, would you like to attend too?" He got a stricken look on his face and said: "Please tell me these are hypothetical questions."
I hope your husband doesn't have a heart condition.

Why not ask if he'd be willing to be on the Maury Show too.

Plot Device
06-16-2007, 12:39 AM
First off, there doesn't have to be only ONE shower. There can be multiple showers for that one baby (usually only a couple's FIRST pregnancy gets any showers at all--after that, a shower isn't seen as "necesarry" because the parents already have a boat-load of stuff from their FIRSt kid). So, how about one shower for the girls, and then a different shower for everyone--guys and girls alike. There is a category of shower called a "Jack and Jill" shower where both males and females attend. Jack and Jill showers are great for the office (be it a baby shower or a wedding shower, Jack and Jill showers are actually preferred at the office to prevent accusation of gender-discrimination).

When it comes to the "girls only" showers, I say no-- the husband/father should NOT attend (and I doubt he'd want to).

job
06-16-2007, 01:45 AM
No.

Baby shower is for women to bond with one another and share woman wisdom and support and chat about indelicate things.

Baby shower is for family and special friends to be a little silly and maybe tear up some and coo about tiny little baby clothes.

This is woman stuff.

If you think don't think there should be 'woman stuff' and 'man stuff'
then you are an ideologue.
This is a useful and interesting thing to be and I don't fault it and it's a good lifestyle and all
but ideologues should keep their hands off baby showers until they have finished all the good work needed on the maternity/paternity leave issue.


The notion that men should go to baby showers
or that the father should go to the baby shower
seldom seems to arise from the 'look how much fun they are missing' school of thought
but more from the 'no event is significant unless men attend it' school of thought
which latter is to be squashed and kiboshed and ground underfoot at every opportunity.

scarletpeaches
06-16-2007, 01:52 AM
Or maybe some people just think it's a good idea that fathers should give a damn about their kids' upbringing?

Siddow
06-16-2007, 02:48 AM
A co-worker threw me a huge co-ed shower with my firstborn. Every person I worked with showed up, mostly because there were Jello shooters.

My BFF gave me a shower for my second-born, but that one was attended by only a few close girlfriends, and was held in a bar. Yes, men were present. I look damned good pregnant. :D

For #3 and #4? NADA.

Although there were men present at both parties, the father was not. Maybe I shoulda told him about the shooters? :Shrug:

(no children developed fetal alcohol syndrome at these parties, I just happened to be a quite popular bartender)

Dancre
06-16-2007, 04:01 AM
I don't see any reason why baby showers have to be women-only. Actually, I kind of resent, as a man, being excluded from anything important related to the birth of my child.

I always imagined baby showers as a bit of fun, rather than some sort of rite of passage. So it was perfectly natural not being involved. But even in that case, I don't see why the ladies-only aspect should be sacrosanct.

if I'd thought that it was something significant in preparing for birth and parenthood, I would insist on being included. Especially if I'm going to be equally responsible for caring for the child.

I guess I just don't have a clear picture of what baby showers are about. It would disturb me to think that there would be important secrets about childbirth that would be hidden from me, the father.

And I sure wouldn't want to be asked to make myself absent at certain points in the pregnancy/childbirth process, then all of a sudden be expected to be there all the time for the unglamorous work.

If it's something important in preparing for parenthood, I'll darned well want to be involved. Just tell me "Hey, it's just a party for the women" and I'll be happy. (And yes, I'll enjoy my last round of golf for the next three years. ;) )


Clears throat:

You arrive at the baby shower which is located at the hostess' house and meet the guest of honor and give her a hug and oohh and ahhh over her swollen belly. You give the baby gift, yes you MUST have a baby gift (get store name from mother's friend who is hosting the party, go to named store, punch in mother's name into an ATM looking machine. Get a listing of ALL her requests. Hunt for at least an hour to find the gift no one else bought. Buy gift. Buy the cute baby bag and card. Pack gift into bag, complete card. If you want to go, you buy the gift.)

Sit down with other mothers who give nightmare stories of being in 12 hours of labor and then they describe the labor pain, the pushing, the blood, quite wonderful. By this time, Mother's face turns white and wants an abortion.

Play the games, usually around 3. Guess the baby's name, how many words can you make by using the mother's name, steal from your neighbor and my favorite, the mother-to-be passes around a tray of baby stuff. You think you are suppose to memorize the stuff on the tray, the mother takes it way, and stays out of the room. Now you have to write what the mother wore! Not what was on the tray. Then there's the use of the TP rolls to estimate the diameter of the Mamma's belly. The winners of the games get prizes and if you are playing steal from your neighbor, then if you win a game, you get to take someone elses' gift. The gifts are usually candles, a diary, hand towels, women stuff.

ONce done with the games, Mother opens the gifts, lots of them. She holds up EACH gift and we all ooo and ahhh over booties, bottles, blankets, pacifiers, baby clothes, etc. Then they pass each gift around so each person can look at them.

Then we have cake and punch and hear MORE horror labor stories. Then after a couple of hours we go home. You are expected to attend in order to support the mother-to-be. I only go to the parties in which I'm close to the mother. Those I don't mind. An acquaintance? Never.

So, still want to attend one, Poet? You're more than welcome to be there, if you can survive. I enjoy going to them b/c I love my friends and enjoy playing the games. It's the labor stuff I can't stand.

kim

TrainofThought
06-16-2007, 05:08 AM
Going to bridal showers, baby showers are HORRIBLE. I don’t understand why women are stuck going to these things. What happened to sending a gift to the home? Who made these rules?


Baby shower is for women to bond with one another and share woman wisdom and support and chat about indelicate things.

Baby shower is for family and special friends to be a little silly and maybe tear up some and coo about tiny little baby clothes.

This is woman stuff.

If you think don't think there should be 'woman stuff' and 'man stuff'
then you are an ideologue. Not all women bond at these things. Some of us are completely BORED out of our minds. I'm normally thinking, 'why the hell isn't there alcohol to numb this occasion?'.

job
06-16-2007, 05:32 AM
But ... but ... Train --

If you don't want to go to baby showers
or gospel singalongs or quilting bees or raves or gatherings of the theosophical society or poetry readings or dog obedience courses or Quaker Meetings or book signings or astronomical sightings of the planet Saturn ...

don't go.

The reason they don't (generally) serve booze at baby showers is that the guest of honor can't drink.

TrainofThought
06-16-2007, 05:44 AM
But ... but ... Train --

If you don't want to go to baby showers
or gospel singalongs or quilting bees or raves or gatherings of the theosophical society or poetry readings or dog obedience courses or Quaker Meetings or book signings or astronomical sightings of the planet Saturn ...

don't go.

The reason they don't (generally) serve booze at baby showers is that the guest of honor can't drink. I don't have much choice when it's a family member, or close friend. I'd never hear the end of it. Now that they are done having kids, I'm not obligated, so I don't go anymore. But whoever decided women should have a shower so other women can sit around, watch someone open gifts and talk about disgusting things should have their head examined.

And just because the guest of honor can't drink doesn't mean the rest of us should suffer. Thatís selfish. :tongue

stormie
06-16-2007, 06:09 AM
I find them boring. Even my own baby showers and bridal showers were boring. Everyone was invited--male, female, young, old, but everyone was just as bored. I've been to many. I don't remember any.

Send gifts. (Of course, half or more of those gifts will probably be returned, even if there is a registry.) If there's any "girl talk" it'll happen whether there's a baby shower or bridal shower or not.

Monkey
06-16-2007, 06:16 AM
Bah. If the father is invited, he should go or make up an excuse as to why he can't go. If he's not specifically invited, he shouldn't show up. That's standard etiquette for any invitation.

Granted, I haven't been invited to a lot of these things, but I've never personally seen a shower invitation addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Tradition says these things are for the ladies, so the ladies usually get the invitations.

I've never gone to one partially because my husband was never invited.

Nakhlasmoke
06-16-2007, 10:36 AM
Actually...something that's bugging me in all this.

Who the hell tells people what to buy them for their baby shower? How extremely rude.

My baby showers were surprise parties thrown by friends. They gave me wonderful gifts, and I really appreciated them. (For reasons I'm not going to go into, I probably appreciated those gifts more than the givers possibly realised.)

Then again, I also didn't do a gift registry for my wedding. I don't know, it freaks me out to tell people what they should be giving me as a present. Unless it's my DH, then i just hand him a list of book titles and say "Surprise me."

poetinahat
06-16-2007, 04:17 PM
I just wish someone would've gotten my kids something like this (http://www.officialramones.com/store/11-25-04/firstruleis.jpg). *sigh*

(The Rock 'n' Roll Preschool one is apparently out of print. I saw a kid wearing one; it was excellent.)

Melanie Nilles
06-16-2007, 05:27 PM
Interesting thread. People can do anything for a baby shower.

I only had one with the first, but people sent a few gifts with the birth of our second (another girl). That shower wasn't the baby shower in a traditional sense, but a fun little party at Red Lobster, where I got to eat anything I liked with good friends around who brought gifts. I never liked attending traditional baby showers. Having my husband and a small group of friends--including SO's--get together for dinner was fun. It was more like a birthday party than a baby shower.

A baby shower is a chance to celebrate the impending arrival of a new baby. As was said, it is a rite of passage. New moms-to-be don't know what to expect. No matter what you read or people tell you, you're never prepared until things happen. But it's nice to be prepared with information. Also, usually those who attend a shower bring gifts because baby's are expensive. (more expensive than a horse--I know!) Having stuff given helps ease the burden as a new parent.

If you don't like going to traditional baby showers but feel obligated, try offering to host one next time a close friend or family member is expecting. Make it the kind of party you would like.

Jamesaritchie
06-16-2007, 08:03 PM
Should the women be invited to the bachelor party?

Haggis
06-16-2007, 08:05 PM
Should the women be invited to the bachelor party?

Singular, James. A woman should be invited to the bachelor party.

scarletpeaches
06-16-2007, 08:16 PM
Should the women be invited to the bachelor party?

Not quite the same thing. Pre-wedding, both the man and the woman each have their own parties to go to - a stag do and a hen night.

Baby showers exclude the father and as far as I'm aware it takes two to make a baby.

Mud Dauber
06-17-2007, 06:22 AM
There is a category of shower called a "Jack and Jill" shower where both males and females attend. Jack and Jill showers are great for the office (be it a baby shower or a wedding shower, Jack and Jill showers are actually preferred at the office to prevent accusation of gender-discrimination).


Please tell me you're kidding.

Mud Dauber
06-17-2007, 06:25 AM
Or maybe some people just think it's a good idea that fathers should give a damn about their kids' upbringing?
I don't equate the father attending a baby shower to his involvement in his kid's upbringing.

Dancre
06-17-2007, 07:24 AM
Should the women be invited to the bachelor party?

Shiver!! Now that's scary. I'll stick with the ladies.

kim

RLB
06-17-2007, 07:29 AM
I'm one of those guests who never shops off the registry (basically cause it means wading into Baby-r-Us or Target, locating the machine, printing it out and trying to figure out what combination of cheaply priced items I can buy without looking like a total cheapskate (I don't usually spring for the glider-rockers).

My standard baby shower gift is a children's book. Something pretty and nicely-bound that I liked when I was a kid (and actually this isn't the cheapest route either, but I like the idea). Then I write a nice note in the front to the kid, telling him/her how much his/her mother means to me (cause if I've agreed to go to the shower, the mother and I must be pretty tight).

job
06-17-2007, 07:12 PM
One interesting (to me) consideration here

is conflating a genuine and traditional rite-of-passage party
(the Baby Shower given by close friends -- high school buddies, sister-in-law, favorite teacher, next-door-neighbor, college roomate,
"So, Jenny, here's that brand new pair of roller-skates to replace the ones I lost." ... and everybody breaks into giggles over a ten-year-old joke.)

with a business-obligation-office-party
("Hi. I'm George ... I work in shipping. Just wanted to say I'm so happy you and your husband are having ... Oh. You're not married? Well, gee, look Marilyn, here's a stuffed ... . Right. I mean, Martie. Yes. Look, Martie, here's a bunny. Why don't I go get some punch ...")

A genuine social event
is only distantly related to the commercial, faux-social event that mimics it.

Just as
going to dinner with the really cute intern you met at the book festival
is not
taking a meal with the buyer from the Chicago office to thrash out production schedules.

Rabe
06-21-2007, 06:56 AM
Who the hell tells people what to buy them for their baby shower? How extremely rude.

Possibly people who already have the esentials of what they *need* to have for their babies.

My friend - when having her baby - was given her old crib that she had as a child and so made sure to tell everyone.

Another friend had grandparents who - as soon as they were told they were pregnant - went out and bought all the necessities, including a booster seat.

In cases such as these, these are some of the gifts that people normally would buy for baby showers. Plus, some people realize that others don't have a lot of time to shop, or don't know what to get and they tend to make it easier for their guests. When invited to a social function I *always* inquire if there is a registry already made up. This way I can buy something that the person requires/wants, I don't have to spend days in the stores looking for something 'perfect' and I can be reasonably assured that they aren't going to have duplicated gifts. There is always the off chance that I know the people very well and can choose a gift without a registry. Such as the last baby shower I (a man) went to (yes, I've been to several). I knew the mother very well, knew her tastes and the decor she planned for her baby. As well as the baby's name. So I dabbled into the world of 'scrapbooking' to create a rustic, cowboy themed photo frame that they could use to put a baby picture into. For another friend's baby, I made up a Darth Vader baby blanket. This way I give them something that will make sure to remind them of me and it's functional.

It's amazing how well little pink ribbons go with Darth Vader.

So, I see gift registries as less a deman for gifts and more as a courtesy to let people know what they would like/require to have. It's also a chance to let people know that you do not want/require gifts. I'm in the process of closing on the purchase of my first house. I've been asked about five times if I'm already registered for my 'house warming' party and it lets me explain that I'm not having a 'house warming' but an 'open house' because I don't need anyone to give me anything nor do I expect them to do so. ((of course, my father is stubborn and has decided he'll be buying me the barbeque grill I've been eying as a 'housewarming' gift. I think it's more an excuse to come over and make someone else cook!))

Rabe...

Rabe
06-21-2007, 07:00 AM
My deadline is June 25. Thanks!

Don't know if this helps or not, but a friend of mine - when hearing her husband's family was planning a baby shower when they went on their annual trip to Ohio decided to turn the tables.

She helped to plan the party and made the FATHER the object of all the games/devices instead of herself.

He even had to send out all the thank you cards! From what I heard the family had a good time, the parents to be had a good time and several other women in the family have decided to do the same themselves.

As a man who has been invited and attended a couple baby showers, I say - why shouldn't they be invited or participate? After all, it's their child as well. The old days of baby showers being the wise matrons gathering together to help out a new mother of the village and give sage advice is long gone. These days showers are more a celebration than a place to gather and get advice. Besides, Dad to be needs advice from other parents as well.

I know I sure would if the Universe chose to be so cruel to grant me offspring.

Rabe...

mpatient24
06-21-2007, 07:10 AM
I've been to several baby showers in the past year that were co-ed. They had bar be que and lots of beer for the guys, and most of the women hung out inside. Their were only so many stories going around, but the guys had their share as well, and they were pretty funny.

The games were great, and not just ones that were fun for the ladies. I've seen some games recently that I'd never seen before. It's a new era and some things are changing.

I'm pregnant with my first child, and some friends are throwing me a shower that will be co-ed, and my family is throwing a co-ed one as well.

Contact me if you want more info or details regarding the games and such.

mpatient24
06-21-2007, 08:36 AM
For that matter, I had two bridal showers. One that my Maid of Honor did, but I helped her plan. It was a Couple's Shower, and the theme was battle of the sexes. It was a blast! Every game was men against women... (Women won!) The guys all told us how much fun it was... and their women later said they really did enjoy themselves... they weren't just saying it.

Then a friend of my Mom's did a Bridal Tea Shower for me that was only women.

Honestly, I think its an individual choice, without any right or wrong about whether or not the men attend.

Typical Baby showers are very boring. The last several I've been to have been lots of fun, but only because the planning strayed from the old "norm"

electric.avenue
06-29-2007, 12:04 AM
Oh and personally I don't see the point in baby showers although they're catching on here these days too. It's your baby; you pay for its stuff. Same goes for weddings. If I ever got married I wouldn't see the point in gift-giving then, either. I already have everything I need because I already run a home. Seems to me it's a leftover from the days when couples didn't have their own place, (either individually or as a couple), before they got hitched. And I sure as hell ain't paying for someone else to clothe their child.

Good points, scarletpeaches. I think there has been a definite decline in traditional weddings in the UK. I don't think nowadays people moving in together or getting married would expect to receive all those expensive setting-up-home type of gifts, as most people already have their own furnished home prior to moving in with a partner.

This thread makes interesting reading as, to my knowledge, we do not have any kind of "shower party" in the UK. I did, however, have an inkling of what one was, because I have visited Canada, and my cousin there was constantly organizing "showers".

A friend of mine, (French), in Japan had a baby, and consequently got to know a few American mums-to-be too. She told me that they had invited her to a party where they were all "going to have a shower together". I had to put her straight on this one - despite the fact that in Japan people do go in for public bathing.