Surprise - brother is having a baby?!!

by Ginger
(Atlanta, GA)

I found out from my father yesterday that my brother and his wife are having a baby - in the next few days. Wow, was I surprised. And, of course, hurt. I did not realize that out relationship had ended somewhere along the way after he got married. There was no disagreement or parting of ways of which I am aware. I continued to keep up with birthdays and Christmas, but he rarely does. Anyhow, my father stated that they announced it on Facebook - at some point over the last nine months, I can assume. I am not on Facebook, and he knows it. My questions are: 1. Does Facebook now substitute for family contact as a general rule in our society and I just had not noticed (and as a result, I should not be hurt by the oversight in letting me know a new family member is arriving)? 2. What is proper etiquette for congratulating them at this point? Is a gift with card still mandatory, even if apparently we no longer have a relationship? Or, should I send an e-mail, or get a friend to get me into Facebook and congratulate them there, and leave it at that?

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Baby Announcement
by: Ms P Etiquette

Hello Ginger,

Let's keep this very simple, shall we? Your brother and his wife are expecting a baby. If you wish to stay present in their lives, please acknowledge with a card and gift for the baby. The bad manners of another is not an excuse for poor behavior on your part. In fact, your kind gesture may bring some joy to your brother's family. As far as Facebook goes- Many family announcements are made via Facebook, but that is no subsitute for personal contact.

I hope this helps you.

Ms. Practical Etiquette​

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