Author Topic: When are 2nd time showers okay?  (Read 9798 times)

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Deetee

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #15 on: February 22, 2013, 04:53:48 PM »
I find showers a bit odd in general.

I completely avoided one for my first child and didn't miss it all. (But do you know what is fun? 2 months of presents in the mail. It was so nice of everyone and spread the fun of getting stuff. There was a while where there seemed to be a package every day that I would leave until my husband came home from work)

Anyhow, I love the idea of celebrating the arrival of a baby, but I think people I know just don't "do" showers. So a party for a baby is great. If it's called a shower that's great. If someone needs stuff, I'd be happy to give some more practical things (shower or no shower). As long as someone has an event that I am free to attend or decline and they have tasty food and drink, I am happy to bring along a onesie. Or I'm happy to drop by later with some muffins and the same onsie and have a quick visit.

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #16 on: February 22, 2013, 05:09:27 PM »
It sounds like you and DH are at that age where everyone around you is starting their families.  Instead of looking back at the shower you had thrown for you when you had your first DD and understanding that is what you are now doing for family/friends, he is looking at all the showers and thinking it is again your turn.  Just keep explaining to him that you do not want a shower and you are set for new DD. 

Eden

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #17 on: February 22, 2013, 05:16:52 PM »
Your husband is apparently jealous of everyone. I'm kind of curious as to what aspects of his character made you marry him because he sounds petty and unpleasant in your post.

Whoa! Harsh!

OP your logic is exactly right. I understand his coworkers including the 2nd time parents in the shower. It was unnecessary but maybe they felt awkward acknowledging the one and not the others. But in general I think you're right on the money.

cass2591

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2013, 05:26:26 PM »
Your husband is apparently jealous of everyone. I'm kind of curious as to what aspects of his character made you marry him because he sounds petty and unpleasant in your post.


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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #19 on: February 22, 2013, 05:47:06 PM »
Many people will say...and I suppose the technical answer is...that second showers are never acceptable for any reason.  And while I get this, I personally don't have a problem with them when...1. Those hosting the shower genuinely want to do so without pressure from the mom.  2. The mom is ok having the gathering and 3. People aren't made to feel like they have to attend (so for instance, I think a group of friends could decide to throw a shower and then have something intimate with just them).

In your situation, you clearly do not desire a shower, so throwing one for you is not appropriate.  And I understand your feelings completely.  While I don't get offended if people have showers for any reason, I don't personally like them, or enjoy attending them (though I do for family and close friends, regardless of what # child they happen to be on).  I didn't have a wedding shower for that reason and only consented to the baby shower because I told my friends I'd let them throw me one when I refused to let them give me a wedding shower.  Who knew that 13 years later, they'd remember that and hold me to that promise. 

As for your DH.  Is this really an issue of the shower or is it something else?  If he feels that your sister and BIL have to "shower" you with gifts because they can afford to and is upset because you are giving to others and not getting anything concrete in return, is the problem that he feels overwhelmed by the cost of another baby and was hoping for some help?  Maybe you can talk to him about why you having a shower is so important to him and reassure him that the baby will have what it needs without you guys breaking the bank (if that's the issue).

Like I said, we already got a "sprinkle" from his coworkers and were fairly well set with this one, too, so I don't think it's about getting anything else for this child.  We're in good shape in that regard; money doesn't grow on trees around here, but our children will be just fine and getting all they need (and plenty they don't!)   

I think it is way more about him knowing that I go out of my way to help others, and I haven't really seen much in return.  Which isn't why I do it.  But he sees me putting forth time and effort to help others, and that's just part of how I was raised.  I think he sees that there are a lot of people around who never lift a finger, and gets frustrated when it seems, from his perspective, that I do more than my fair share.  I don't think I do, but I do know that in many circles, (church is a big one,) there are some people who will participate and help out, and there are others who never do.  Just because others don't step forward doesn't mean that I shouldn't.  Does that make sense?

Even if you weren't in good shape for this one, a second shower isn't appropriate. As you are aware, your child, your responsibility.

It sounds like your DH is frustrated that he feels that you are short changed by your friends & sister... that you give/do more than they do. You need to make him understand that you don't go to the extent of doing for others out of a since of obligation but because you enjoy it. And if you are doing it out of a since of obligation then you need to re-evaluate why you feel obligated.

Aquamarine

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #20 on: February 22, 2013, 05:57:07 PM »
For me unless someone has lost all their possessions I don't see a second shower ever as really acceptable.  A shower is supposed to be a welcome to motherhood event, once that has happened I see subsequent showers as unnecessary.  There seems to be a lot of gift grabbing in this area, much more so than just a few decades ago.
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*inviteseller

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #21 on: February 22, 2013, 07:35:05 PM »
I had a shower for second DD ( note to anyone planning a baby shower...don't yell surprise at an 8 1/2 mo pregnant  woman!).  If I had known, I would have said no, but it was my coworkers, my sister and one friend held at work.  Only my sister knew me when my first DD was born 11 years previously, and the gifts were all thoughtful & practical things...hand knit blankets, bottles, cute bibs and some adorable outfits.  As for the big stuff, DD's father and I had made sure we provided that because it was our responsibility.  My sister and her DH are financially better off than myself, but I never assumed that my child bearing decisions should become any of her responsibility or anyone elses.  I feel sorry for you DH because instead of being happy to welcome his new baby to his life, he is busy looking at what others haven't given.  Instead of asking "where is our stuff?", he should be thinking "look at what blessings I have". 

Marbles

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #22 on: February 22, 2013, 07:44:16 PM »
My husband thinks this way, to an extent. It's not so much jealousy as counting favors and keeping reciprocity at the forefront of his mind. It's an interesting point of difference in us. I just like doing things for folks - helping out as I can - and, as long as they show appreciation, I really don't think about how much they do for me. DH is much more mindful of the reciprocity of relationships. It has taken me some time to get used to looking at things that way, but I have found that it helps my friendships to see when my friends may be feeling an imbalance because of the help that I've given and to back off on the doing favors until they've had a chance to reciprocate a bit.

DH and I are pretty self-sufficient (we do stuff for ourselves, too ;) ), so there aren't as many opportunities for our friends to help us out. We bank up favors faster than we use them. This doesn't bug me; it's not why I help people out. But I know that it can be stressful for the folks on the other side of that debt, so it's something to keep in mind.

People who never reciprocate (or do, but with a... let's call it... less than neutral attitude) really shouldn't be getting many favors. It's an unbalanced relationship. It's a recipe for resentment.

OP, I don't think this is so much about a second shower for your DH as it is being sure that others are showing you the appreciation that you deserve for having gone the extra mile for them. It's nice that your DH is looking out for you in that way. I think that you can reassure him that you don't want them to reciprocate by throwing you a shower. Reciprocity is about giving the help that is needed, not the exact same help back. (If you help a buddy build a deck, does he have to wait for you to build a deck before he can return the favor or could he help you pour a new driveway?)

Some favors go longer before being repaid or are repaid in vastly different ways. It sounds like your DH may have a different scale than you do for how or how long it should take for a favor to be repaid/balance be restored in a relationship. It's worth a discussion, if only so that he doesn't take to resenting your friends for not reciprocating.

When I'm doing favors for friends these days, the primary parenting duties for our kids fall on my DH. What he does is very much a part of me being able to do these favors. If that's the case in your family as well, you might consider that your DH has a stake in seeing the favors you are giving being repaid.

snowdragon

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #23 on: February 22, 2013, 10:28:02 PM »
   There is never a time when 2nd showers are ok.  As you stated they are to welcome a woman into motherhood and aren't supposed to be the way to outfit a kid. 

   I hate getting invited to second, third or more kids and I feel it reflects on the parents ( unless it was *truly* a surprise shower).  And to me gender or even a large gap between kids is not sufficient cause for another shower for anyone.

Mr Wigglybones

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #24 on: February 22, 2013, 10:52:10 PM »
I think your husband is being ridiculous and selfish. No one owes anyone a shower, not even a first time one, and he can't expect one just because he's jealous of your sister's money. He should also stop picking on the sister just because he has a jealously and entitlement streak.

kareng57

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #25 on: February 22, 2013, 11:25:12 PM »
   There is never a time when 2nd showers are ok.  As you stated they are to welcome a woman into motherhood and aren't supposed to be the way to outfit a kid. 

   I hate getting invited to second, third or more kids and I feel it reflects on the parents ( unless it was *truly* a surprise shower).  And to me gender or even a large gap between kids is not sufficient cause for another shower for anyone.


True, I have a raised-eyebrow response to the common assertion that a second shower is okay because the baby is a different sex than the first.  It's also true that I come from an era when ultrasound-sex-determination was more of an educated guess than anything else, but still....

The second baby will still have the same needs.  The requirements of a crib, stroller, baby bathtub, receiving blankets etc. will not change simply because the second baby is of a different sex.

Now - this has been a common misinterpretation on this board IMO.  Many people think that this means that no one should give gifts for a second or subsequent baby, and that's not true at all.  Lots of people will give gifts such as cute outfits, toys etc. for a second, fourth or fifth baby.  The thing is - traditionally, shower gifts were more for the mother.  The intent was to provide inexpensive but needed baby-care items such as diapers (cloth, a couple of generations ago), receiving blankets, sleepers, washcloths/towels - that sort of stuff.  If the second baby follows within a few years, the assumption is that Mom already has these things.

So I too will agree that second/subsequent showers are inappropriate unless there are extreme circumstances.  That does not prohibit anyone from giving a gift for any new baby.

camlan

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #26 on: February 23, 2013, 11:11:57 AM »
This whole issue is such a minefield, really.

IMO, a second shower is only appropriate under unusual circumstances. For example, I attended one for a friend who had three kids already, but who was 7 months pregnant when their house burnt down. They lost nearly everything.

So a bunch of friends got together and held a shower so they'd have some stuff for the new baby. And a party, because they all needed a bit of cheering up at that point.

But I don't criticize, say, a workplace where every expectant parent gets a work shower, no matter how many kids they already have. That's just the management trying to keep things equal and fair. And I've known some 2nd or 3rd time moms refuse the shower, but accept a small party, with cake, just before they go on leave.

My dad was in the military. Every time my mom was pregnant, the other military wives threw her a shower. She didn't want them, didn't ask for them and they were usually a surprise. But I think those showers were due to the fact that military wives are often far from home and without family and close friends to be a support system. Those showers were a bonding thing--showing the mom-to-be that she did have people she could call on in an emergency.

And if someone's closest relatives and friends, say 10 or fewer people, were to have her over for tea one afternoon and everyone just happened to bring a little baby outfit with them, I'd be fine with that.

It's the "every baby should be celebrated" idea that bugs me. Sure, celebrated the birth of the 2nd child, and the 3rd. Just don't celebrate them with a shower. I really think some people feel the only appropriate celebration for a baby is a shower. But really, you could have any kind of party you want, before or after the birth, to celebrate the new baby.

And I really don't like the showers held because the new baby is not the same gender as the first baby. Babies don't care what color their car seat is, or if there are ducks or trains on their onesies. Only the parents care. And if the parents care that much, then with the first baby they register for gender-neutral items, or they buy new gender-appropriate things for the second baby. They should not expect other people to buy things because they don't like the color or style of what they have.
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JeseC

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #27 on: February 23, 2013, 12:34:32 PM »
This whole issue is such a minefield, really.

IMO, a second shower is only appropriate under unusual circumstances. For example, I attended one for a friend who had three kids already, but who was 7 months pregnant when their house burnt down. They lost nearly everything.

So a bunch of friends got together and held a shower so they'd have some stuff for the new baby. And a party, because they all needed a bit of cheering up at that point.

But I don't criticize, say, a workplace where every expectant parent gets a work shower, no matter how many kids they already have. That's just the management trying to keep things equal and fair. And I've known some 2nd or 3rd time moms refuse the shower, but accept a small party, with cake, just before they go on leave.

My dad was in the military. Every time my mom was pregnant, the other military wives threw her a shower. She didn't want them, didn't ask for them and they were usually a surprise. But I think those showers were due to the fact that military wives are often far from home and without family and close friends to be a support system. Those showers were a bonding thing--showing the mom-to-be that she did have people she could call on in an emergency.

And if someone's closest relatives and friends, say 10 or fewer people, were to have her over for tea one afternoon and everyone just happened to bring a little baby outfit with them, I'd be fine with that.

It's the "every baby should be celebrated" idea that bugs me. Sure, celebrated the birth of the 2nd child, and the 3rd. Just don't celebrate them with a shower. I really think some people feel the only appropriate celebration for a baby is a shower. But really, you could have any kind of party you want, before or after the birth, to celebrate the new baby.

And I really don't like the showers held because the new baby is not the same gender as the first baby. Babies don't care what color their car seat is, or if there are ducks or trains on their onesies. Only the parents care. And if the parents care that much, then with the first baby they register for gender-neutral items, or they buy new gender-appropriate things for the second baby. They should not expect other people to buy things because they don't like the color or style of what they have.

I might also add in times where there's suddenly more babies than they were expecting.  We had a couple that had one baby, then decided to try for #2.  Surprise, #2 turned out to be #2, 3, and 4.  We threw a nice baby shower to help out with supplying baby stuff for all three kids, since their hand-me-downs obviously weren't going to be enough anymore!

MommyPenguin

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #28 on: February 23, 2013, 12:46:39 PM »
I think second showers can be okay sometimes, mostly if they're by a group that chooses to throw showers for every baby or for their first baby since a member of that group (because that way it's not one person pressuring others to invite, it's a group decision by everyone involved).  I can also see showers in unusual circumstances, like when the house burned down or like when the husband divorced the woman during her pregnancy.  While I don't think a shower is necessary in the case of a family having a child so long after the previous child that baby equipment is gone, I don't think it's necessarily a faux pas if the family or a group of friends together *want* to do it.

However, two kids two years apart, even if they are different sexes, is not usually a reason.  And I think that your DH needs to consider that these women at church (I think you said) are having *first time* children, and that you got a shower when that was true of you.  As for your doing a lot of things for other people, that's your choice (not that you are complaining).  You don't *have* to go to that effort, and it doesn't require people to go to a lot of effort, either.  If all that effort is required by everybody for everybody, it would be exhausting and stressful and no longer feel good, the way it does when we *choose* to go to a lot of effort because we enjoy it or want to show our love.

I'm on my 4th girl, so I've mostly been able to hand the same clothes down from kid to kid to kid.  I'm getting tired of them!  But that still doesn't mean that I expect new clothes or equipment for each kid.  :)  I did get a few new things this time, because when we moved after kid #3, we got rid of the swing and bouncer, so I had the fun of getting new ones from the consignment store.

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Re: When are 2nd time showers okay?
« Reply #29 on: February 23, 2013, 12:49:51 PM »
A second shower is acceptable if it is organized by people other than the immediate family of the parent, and all the participants are happy to take part. This latter bit normally means that they are very close to the parent.

Organizing one yourself, or inviting people who would likely only provide a present because they feel obligated by the invitation, should be avoided.
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