Shower Etiquette

by Dianne

My selfish, spoiled daughter-in-law expects me to pay for an expensive baby shower. I live out of town so the mother is making arrangements at a good (read expensive) restaurant for at least 50 guests and I do not have an income that allows that kind of expenditure. I will have to fly to another state, pay for a hotel for two days, pay for the shower (with her mother) and then pay for an expensive gift as well. I am on social security as my only income. My son and daughter-in-law know this and they just talked me into lending them $7,500 dollars. They know it's part of my retirement income and as it is I won't have enough money to get thorough retirement. Now a baby shower that will end up costing airfare, hotel, gift and then the cost of the shower itself! Ridiculous.

The mother said my daughter-in-law's two sisters-in-law won't do a shower; they're too disorganized, too spacey, and a third that would contribute is in another state. That's not my problem and why should I be bullied into paying these costs because they won't.

I would be more than happy to be a part of a home based shower with a modest menu and controlled costs. It could still be very pretty and festive without putting such a strain on my finances. How do I deal with the extravagant mother who's insisting on this? What are my options?

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Taking Control
by: Ms P Etiquette


I have a question for you. How did this situation escalate to your current position? Reading your letter gave me the impression that you had many opportunities during the planning phase where you could have said no when your circumstances were not respected by the other parties involved.

My advice is to tell them exactly how much you can participate, in both your time and your finances. No one is to blame except you if you permit this steamrolling tactic. Don't be a victim. Take charge of your own situation so you can let go of your anger and move forward.

And speaking from the practical etiquette standpoint, the behavior of your daughter in law and her family is rude and unacceptable under any code of etiquette.

It is interesting to note you do not mention your son and his position in all of this?

Good luck. Take care.

Ms Practical Etiquette

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