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Old 02-12-2003, 01:01 PM
Nikki_DZ Nikki_DZ is offline
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Etiquette Question

I just received an invitation to a "Naughty or Nice" bridal lingerie shower for a high school friend. This will be marriage #2 for the bride-to-be (#1 was 5 years ago).

Beyond the obvious tackiness of the theme, I was always taught that showers for re-marriage were not appropriate, same going for showers for second children, etc. The same host had a shower for another friend for her second AND third children. I don't want to be a b*tch about the whole deal, and at this point plan on using work as an excuse for not attending (I haven't spoke to the bride in almost 2 years, it's not like we're close).

However, out of curiousity...What is everyone else's take on showers for re-marriage and baby #2 and beyond? Am I a victim of outdated etiquette, or is this really a faux pas?
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:09 PM
Kevin Kevin is offline
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Ettiquette really is a lost art or a lost cause depending on who you ask. Your friend may just be opportunistic -- utilizing any possible chance to get free stuff.

She might have come out of her previous marriage with nothing. If she's marrying the same man as she did previously I'd question her motives though.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:17 PM
greeklawgirl greeklawgirl is offline
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If I remember correctly, the entire premise of a shower is to shower the bride/new mother with the gifts that the couple/baby will need in getting started out. I figure that by the second time around, she will have just about everything she needs to start a household or have another baby.

Times have changed so much in the last 40-50 years that its hard to say what is appropriate anymore. IMO, you shouldn't feel obligated to attend...and you are certainly not obligated to send a gift. I think a polite card sending your regrets and best wishes for a happy marriage is plenty.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:18 PM
MSKKG MSKKG is offline
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To quote Emily Post's Etiquette:

"Every effort should be made to make a shower for a second marriage one that will be really helpful to a couple who may already have all of their basic necessities. Liquor showers, food showers, garden showers, and ticket (to some entertainment) showers are often more appropriate than the traditional ktichen or linen showers."


"Showers may be given for second babies, but they should be restricted to either very close friends and family or to people who were not invited to showers for the first baby. Only if the mother has moved to a new area and has a new circle of friends should she allow anyone to give her a shower for additional babies."

In this day and time when the sex of the baby is known more times than not prior to birth, I have heard (not from Ms. Post, however) that showers for second babies whose sex is different from the first baby are appropriate.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:20 PM
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Although I tend to go with proper etiquette, I will say this - if she is coming from an unhappy marriage, I think that a shower is a good way for her family and friends to say, "We support you, we want you to be happy, and we're here to make things a little more fun getting ready." I don't think this is wrong at all. As for more than one baby shower, I would definitely throw one for one friend of mine, but maybe not for others. It depends on their situation. If you're not close, I wouldn't worry about going, but if it were a good friend I wouldn't let "etiquette" keep you away.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:30 PM
xo_kathy xo_kathy is offline
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I'm seriously dating a man who has been married before, though I have not been. As we are planning on marriarge, I would assume we are still getting a shower thrown for us. He got practically nothing in the divorce and I still have most of my "first apartment on my own" furniture, kitchen wares, etc.

Also, what about people who live together for 5 years before they get married? Don't you think they have accumulated a lot of stuff already? And they still get showers. Same can be said that most people are getting married later now. At 28-35 you should have plenty of stuff but we still throw these people showers. I just think, as someone else sort of said, it's a happy time and why not celebrate it to it's fullest?

The double baby shower thing though is a bit much...
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:40 PM
valkyrie valkyrie is offline
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Re: Etiquette Question

I'd like to hear what people from the south think of this! I always feel like they know way more about etiquette than I do!

I'm no expert, but this whole thing sounds so inappropriate on so many levels. I really don't think that people should be having showers for seconds -- marriages or children. It just seems, I don't know, overly selfish, and there are other ways for family and friends to show that they support someone as she approaches her second marriage -- that don't involve nothing but gifts. For example, the couple (or their families) could throw an engagement party or something along those lines, and those who feel moved to bring a gift could, but the emphasis isn't on that.

I would say no for second (and third, etc.) children as well. Once you have baby stuff, you can reuse a lot of it (especially if you're not into the cheesy blue for boys and pink for girls crap). I would think that by the time you've decided to have a second child, you should darn well be able to afford to buy what you need yourself, and it's not like you're just starting your new family and need all the help you can get.

I agree that the theme is VERY tacky. Why do you all want to sit around and watch someone look at lingerie she has received? Why would anyone want to buy lingerie for a friend? What if you buy the wrong size? While you are eating lunch (assuming that the guests at least get fed), are you supposed to picture her and her future husband enjoying the lingerie? Gross.

Also, if you haven't spoken to her for two years, WHY IN THE HELL were you invited to the shower? I always thought that showers were for close friends and family. I wouldn't even think of going to a shower of someone I haven't spoken with for such a long time. I figure, if we're not close enough friends that I could call you up at night crying about something that upset me, I'm not going to your shower. I think the best ever shower invitation I got was for a shower that was being held across the country. It came with a note saying, basically, that we know you can't make it, but feel free to send a gift! Yeah, right!

Edited to add: Bridal showers are, in my opinion, for brides. I think that if a woman who has never been married is marrying a guy who has been married, there is no reason why she shouldn't have a shower.

Last edited by valkyrie; 02-12-2003 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:44 PM
Nikki_DZ Nikki_DZ is offline
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Thanks for the replies, everyone...

I'm not sure if I made it clear before, but my hesitancy to attend the shower is not related to the second marriage aspect as much as it is to the fact that I'm by no means close to the bride at this point in our lives. The last time I saw her was at a another friend's wedding 2 years ago, and even then we only exchanged a few words.

I was more just wondering if the etiquette that my mother drilled into me as a youngster about such matters was outdated, and how common such event were in this day and age. MSKKG, I copied your post and sent it to her, so I'm sure she's gagging on her tongue right now

As far as living together, this is another hot topic with my mom. I live with my bf, and probably will for 2 years or more before we get married. We have everything we need plus more. I don't want a shower, and I've told friends that. In general, I think showers are about as outdated as hope chests. XO_Kathy, you're right in that people get married later in life these days, and many have most the things they need to set-up a home. Personally, I would just prefer a kick-butt bachelorette party
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Old 02-12-2003, 01:53 PM
adduncan adduncan is offline
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Originally posted by xo_kathy
Also, what about people who live together for 5 years before they get married? Don't you think they have accumulated a lot of stuff already? And they still get showers. Same can be said that most people are getting married later now. At 28-35 you should have plenty of stuff but we still throw these people showers. I just think, as someone else sort of said, it's a happy time and why not celebrate it to it's fullest?
I'd like to share my own experiences on this subject.

My husband and I were both over 30 when we met and married. I already owned a home that I purchased in my single years, we both had established careers and stable incomes. When he moved into my guest room in the couple of months before we married, we had to "consolidate" alot just to make everything fit in the house. (The Salvation Army made a killing off of us.)

In addition, I had bicoastal bridesmaids, and most of our friends and family flew in from over a dozen states (or sent cards, etc).

In my situation, a bridal shower just didn't make any sense, in any form. (My bridesmaids and I, plus a guy or two--don't ask--had a low-key bachelorette night at a local club, and my matron of honor gave me my first "married" lingerie as a private gift, but that was about it.)

My then-fiance and I decided that given the lengths people had to go to just *be* at the wedding, we included a card in our invitations that asked our guests to not send or bring any gifts--that we had everything we needed and what we wanted most of all was for our friends and family to share our wedding and celebrate with us. We suggested some of our favorite charities if people really felt the need to give a gift.
In this day and age of people marrying later, more frequently, and women being more financially independent than our mothers or grandmothers were, I'm having a hard time accepting the concept of the traditional "shower". For those of us who are already established in homes and careers before we marry, it seems to be a bit of overkill.

We'll be trying to have children in the near future as well. While we would love to have our friends and family celebrate any new additions to our nest, I can not see myself saying, "Sure, buy a plane ticket, find lodging for yourself and come visit. Oh yeah, buy me something too."

Just my 2 cents.
Adrienne (PNAM-2003)
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Old 02-12-2003, 02:17 PM
White_Chocolate White_Chocolate is offline
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I knew someone who had been single forever. she had her own house, tons of furniture, and was extremely picky when it came to guys. She ended up marrying this guy who had a lot of money but he was divorced with 3 kids. A true gold-digger.
Well, she had a wedding shower with about 90 people. And I was invited because her mom wanted me to come. She barely said two words to me. So, I didn't go. I thought it was rather selfish of her to have such a big shower(half the people went to save face but they hated her and talked about her all of the time). I think some people are selfish. And I don't care how many times she was married. . .she wasn't a close friend of mine so why should I go to the shower because of her mom liking me?

But as far as marriage and baby number 2, i don't think that they should have a household shower. . .but for the marriage, i would have a lingerie shower. . .and for the baby, it would just be a cookout to stay congratulations.

the only case that i would accept an invitation to with the baby is if their oldest child was like 6 or 8. . .or the baby was a complete surprise(no lie, my friend's parents had her little brother when she was graduating from high school-he's 10 now).
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Old 02-12-2003, 02:20 PM
SATX*APhi SATX*APhi is offline
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Wow, I have never heard of this "no showers for seconds." Everybody I know has showers for second babies and even third, etc. I am not too sure about the whole marriages deal, as I can't remember knowing anybody who re-married. I'm still astonished.
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Old 02-12-2003, 02:55 PM
33girl 33girl is offline
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I see nothing wrong with showers for second babies - I would hate to be the second baby that no one thought to throw a shower celebrating my arrival! If nothing else, have a small shower and tell everyone to buy diapers - those definitely can't be reused and aren't cheap.

Lingerie showers are gross, no matter what. If a close friend wants to buy the bride to be a pretty peignor set, fine, but that's as far as it should go.

As far as second wedding showers - it all depends on the first marriage and how it went, emotionally and financially. But I completely agree with everyone who complained about the large showers. IMO showers are for bridesmaids, very close friends in the area, and family ONLY. I've gotten shower invites from people I hadn't talked to in FIVE years, and they weren't next door either - I am talking up at the NY border. I don't know what they were thinking, but having grown up with a shower as being something held in the church social room with punch and cake, these showers that are as ornate as the wedding are absolutely foreign to me.
It is all 33girl's fault. ~DrPhil
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Old 02-12-2003, 09:36 PM
DeltaBetaBaby DeltaBetaBaby is offline
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I must be in a nice mood today, because I am giving everyone the benefit of the doubt.

Keep in mind, this bride is NOT throwing herself a shower. Her bridesmaids, sisters, friends, or whomever have decided to put together an event. It is not like the bride is going to refuse.

Maybe they don't particularly know that you are not close with the bride anymore, and feel you would be offended without an invite.
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Old 02-12-2003, 11:10 PM
sororitygirl2 sororitygirl2 is offline
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There is no such thing as outdated etiquette... it is always relevant, it's just that our society is dumb and tactless far too often!

Anyway, the idea of showers (even for a first wedding) is inherently rude. You are NEVER supposed to ask for gifts... there are many other ways to celebrate joyous events. Showers have become a traditional part of our culture, however, and can be excused when done tastefully and minimally. Anyway, I don't think anyone should have too many showers for their first wedding, and I don't think they should have them for second ones. You already got gifts!

For babies, I think it is more okay to have multiple ones (ie. one for each kid).

Family members should not throw showers, based on traditional etiquette... Only friends can.
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Old 02-13-2003, 01:03 PM
toocute toocute is offline
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Originally posted by MSKKG
To quote Emily Post's Etiquette:

In this day and time when the sex of the baby is known more times than not prior to birth, I have heard (not from Ms. Post, however) that showers for second babies whose sex is different from the first baby are appropriate.
YES...I agree this is very appropriate for this day and age but you you do have MANY old skool folks that will never give/attend the shower for a second baby.

A baby always needs STUFF and STUFF is expensive. It doesn't matter if it's the first, second or fifth. I'm a mommy...I know these things.

Also someone mentioned re using things from past children. That's all good also but if you have your second child in a season different from your first...your clothes will be all wrong. For example I had my son last Feb. So he has a lot of winter clothes 0-3 months. If I have my second child in June he/she could not wear his/her older brother's stuff. The season's would be off. Basic stuff like onesies and blankets don't apply to this.

Good second or third baby shower gifts DIAPERS, DIAPERS and coupons for more Diapers.

Last edited by toocute; 02-13-2003 at 01:16 PM.
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