Author Topic: Give a gift/sign a card for wedding you're not invited to because you're female?  (Read 4025 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

lowspark

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4165
Just to clarify, I'm not "upset" or "worked up". It's just something I've never encountered before in this office, where I've worked for over 10 years (so you can imagine how many people have gotten married while working here during that time) and I wanted to get y'all's take on it.

Apparently it is common in other offices, so that's fine. I guess I was partially taken aback wondering why *this bride* (considering there was another bride in the office only ~2 months ago) and why *only women*.

I just passed the envelope on to the next person and didn't comment. I won't say anything to the organizer as it's really not my place to say anything about it.

Yvaine

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 9085
Just to clarify, I'm not "upset" or "worked up". It's just something I've never encountered before in this office, where I've worked for over 10 years (so you can imagine how many people have gotten married while working here during that time) and I wanted to get y'all's take on it.

Apparently it is common in other offices, so that's fine. I guess I was partially taken aback wondering why *this bride* (considering there was another bride in the office only ~2 months ago) and why *only women*.

I just passed the envelope on to the next person and didn't comment. I won't say anything to the organizer as it's really not my place to say anything about it.

As for the "this bride but not the other bride" thing, they probably aren't close to the same people. The first woman's friends didn't organize anything at the workplace and the second woman's friends did. And I agree that the only-women thing was likely trying to evoke a shower.

Roe

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6484
The card, itself, isn't rude.  The women only thing?  Hmm, maybe the card hasn't made it way around to a male yet? 

amylouky

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1567
I think it's pretty common to take up gift money in an office situation, even if you're not invited to the event. I've chipped in for many presents for weddings that I'm not invited to, and babies that I'll never meet.
I'm also not really bothered by the women-only thing, I do think it's meant to make it like a wedding shower where traditionally only women attend.
The only thing that would bother me is that it's not done for everyone, that's just asking for hurt feelings. In our office it's generally one person (our department admin) who heads up donations for gifts (and funeral flowers).

lowspark

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4165
The card, itself, isn't rude.  The women only thing?  Hmm, maybe the card hasn't made it way around to a male yet? 

Well, no. There is a distribution list stapled to the outside of the envelope (one of those inner-office mail envelopes) with the card & money inside that. The distribution list consists of names of most of the women in the office and no males.

It wasn't that only women signed the card, it was that the request for money/signatures was directed only toward the women in the office.

Kari

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 398
I don't think it's out of line for a card to be passed around a workplace for coworkers to sign and donate money to honor a major life event. It's a sweet guesture. In my experience, the card gets passed around discretely so that each person can make the decision whether to sign/contribute privately, without the pressure of watching eyes.

The woman-only list seems strange, but I wonder if there's a good explanation for it. Are the women the only ones who work directly with the coworker? I've never heard of only shaking down female coworkers for money -- hopefully this is just one person's faux pas and not a trend!

lowspark

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4165
I don't think it's out of line for a card to be passed around a workplace for coworkers to sign and donate money to honor a major life event. It's a sweet guesture. In my experience, the card gets passed around discretely so that each person can make the decision whether to sign/contribute privately, without the pressure of watching eyes.

The woman-only list seems strange, but I wonder if there's a good explanation for it. Are the women the only ones who work directly with the coworker? I've never heard of only shaking down female coworkers for money -- hopefully this is just one person's faux pas and not a trend!

To the bolded, nope. This office has a lot more men in it than women so really, no one works exclusively with one gender or the other. This particular bride works with mostly men, as do we all, since men are definitely the majority in the office.

In point of fact, since you bring up the question of who she works with, I've actually never worked directly with her and neither has everyone on the list. Some have, many haven't.

Roe

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6484
In that case, I'd ask the organizer about the only-women thing?  That is strange.

The passing of the card, that's pretty typical in most workplaces.

Kaypeep

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2328
Giving toward a group gift & I'm not invited: in an office situation, I am fine with this. I vote not rude.

Female only: indicative of a throwback to showers like you mentioned. Not sure I would call it rude or worth getting upset about, just narrow-minded.

POD.  Nothing about this bothers me or seems improper, except for excluding the men.  I'd love for OP to ask the person coordinating this why it's only being passed to women.  I'd love to understand her rationale for this.

JenJay

  • I'm a nonconformist who doesn't conform to the prevailing standards of nonconformity.
  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6538
The card, itself, isn't rude.  The women only thing?  Hmm, maybe the card hasn't made it way around to a male yet? 

Well, no. There is a distribution list stapled to the outside of the envelope (one of those inner-office mail envelopes) with the card & money inside that. The distribution list consists of names of most of the women in the office and no males.

It wasn't that only women signed the card, it was that the request for money/signatures was directed only toward the women in the office.

So not only did someone want to make sure all the ladies got a shot at the card, they'll also be able to cross-reference the list and signatures and see who participated and who passed. I hope you don't end up getting it again with a "I noticed you didn't sign this. We must have accidentally skipped you."

At my former job a card would go around for every little thing. I always signed them but declined to chip in money. The only one that offended me was one to wish our boss a Merry Christmas and give him a gift card. Yeah, for the boss who had funds (per small donations out of employee paychecks) to throw a holiday party but couldn't be bothered for three years running? No thanks. I wasn't alone though, the organizer wound up trying to track down the people who'd put in cash so she could return it when the card got back to her with something like $12 in it.

Sorry for the mini threadjack, that still makes me  :P. It sounds like one of the bride to be's friends thought it would be a nice gesture. It may not have been done before but it'll probably catch on now. If I were a male coworker I'd be offended that someone assumed I wouldn't want to participate.

lowspark

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4165
Well, you cross your name off the list before passing it to the next person. That way you're acknowledging that you've seen it. I don't think the organizer (or anyone else) will actually cross reference the list to see who signed the card.


Margo

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1732
I think that the 'women only' and the 'this bride but not other brides' is a bit odd.

In all of the places I've worked, it's been the norm for a gift to be bought for important life events - a marriage, birth of a child, retirement - a card goes round to sign, with an envelope into which you put as much or as little as you want towards a gift, and initial the envelope so it's clear who has seen it.

So I don't see it as odd or pushy top make a collection, but it is odd to do it for one person if there isn't that expectation for everyone, and the women only part seem s really strange to me.

gellchom

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2371
Wow, when I first started reading, I thought I might actually disagree with Lowspark, which hardly ever happens. 

But when I got to the "women only" part -- !!!

I agree with the other posters who said that sending around a card and an envelope, where it is clear no one is expected to sign, let alone contribute (I see the check-off list as just a circulation matter), is fine. 

I do think that it's not so nice to do it for one but not all.  I realize that perhaps one of this bride's friends decided to do this for her, and it's not her fault no one did it for the last wedding.   But maybe this needs to be considered as an office policy.  If it's a huge place, where there'd be a card and collection every week, the employees might choose as a group to not do it for anyone.  After all, an employee's own work friends would still be free to give them a gift or party or whatever privately.

They completely lost me on the "women only."  I am not swayed by the "they were probably trying to simulate a shower" thought.  No matter what they were thinking, it's NOT a shower -- it's a card and a collection for a wedding gift.  Unless the gift is to be something like lingerie or sex toys or something (and I sincerely hope that it is NOT -- totally inappropriate for an all-office gift), why on earth women only?  I would be kind of steamed by the women-only part.

Hmmmmm

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6784
The card and money collection for a gift from co-workers is a pretty standard practice in all the offices I've worked in for the last 20 years.  I don't find this odd at all. And the note wasn't written "If you give money, sign the card." which would have been offensive.

The fact this is the first "bride" to get this treatment? Well all office traditions start somewhere. Who knows why the instigator of this one decided to start with her. Maybe she also thought it was a common practice amongst offices and has been a little bothered that your office doesn't do something to acknowledge a wedding.

The all female list is very strange to me. But maybe since this is a "first" in your office she thought the other women in the office might be more receptive to the idea.

lowspark

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4165
This is a fairly large office with >120 people. It consists of several different departments some of which interact, some of which don't. Among those that don't interact for business purposes, of course, there is still interaction on a social basis as you greet people you see every day and get to know them over time.

Now, if they were to send out something like this to everyone in the office every time someone had an occasion, yeah, it would get to be too much very quickly. So how do you pick who gets on the distribution list if you're going to limit it to just those who might be interested? It's a logistical nightmare.

Which is probably why it's never been done before. In this size and make up of this office, it just isn't workable. Now, if say the department in which the honoree works wants to do this within their own group, sure. But sending around something to a select few from certain departments based on whether they know or are friendly with (etc.) the honoree is where the difficulty comes in. I'm guessing that's why she chose to only include the women. Had they included the men, the list would have probably had to include about 50-60 people, maybe more.

Oh and my guess is that they will get her a gift card. LOL on the idea of sex toys!! We're way to conservative around here for that!