Author Topic: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?  (Read 6047 times)

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Fragglerocker

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Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« on: March 21, 2013, 09:11:26 PM »
So with all the threads on the subject of multiple showers for babies (or weddings but the focus has been on babies as of late), I think at the crux of the issue is whether the parents are being "gimmepigs" in some way.  Several posters indicated that "gimmepig" behavior may or may not be tied to a subsequent shower and could be seen even in the first shower.

My first thought on that is pretty basic:  for me, it's the number of guests.  My first shower (for DD#1) was kept fairly small, and included close family and friends.  That was it.  Total invited guests under 30, including children (who were invited).  This time, after refusing a 2nd shower I gave in eventually to two friends who wanted to do a Girls' Night Out, in lieu of a "real" shower and I relented.  Total invited guests:  7 (8 if you count me), none of whom (except my BFF) had been to the original shower.

Most showers I go to have between 20-40 people at them and that seems to be the norm where I am.  It includes probably 1/2 family and 1/2 friends, with variations of course depending on how close families live and so forth. 

Now, a friend of mine (who I love dearly and I would hate to impute any ill motive to) recently had a baby shower and I helped come in and plan it when the original planner dropped the ball.  (I planned it with several other friends and was not the "chair" organizing it).  This friend is part of a large group at church and invited every.single.female.member of the group.  Total invited from this group: about 80.  Add to it a few additional friends (such as myself, I'm not in that group) and her family and the guest list was well over 100.  The "chair" had to rent out a large room and those of us bringing other things (food, centerpieces, decor, prizes) had to shell out a lot of cash (I spent over $100 not counting the gift I bought her and I was just one person among seven contributing) just to get the food (and we divided that up, so that's not $100 for all the food--that was for two food items and some of the decor). 

I can see this as very potentially a "gimmepig" situation--inviting a huge number of people like that--but I wonder if that's an automatic thing or if it depends on who the people are?  Say, a large family vs. a situation like this where she easily could have kept it to family & friends and left out all but the people she was close to in that large group she participates in.   (I am assuming she felt pressured not to leave anyone out and hence invited the entire group.  And yes most of them came--it was about 90 of us total, 75 or so from the group.)

Thoughts?  Is there a magic number that beyond which one becomes a gimmepig?

Venus193

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #1 on: March 21, 2013, 09:27:22 PM »
I don't have children and don't come from a big family, but I'm inclined to think that baby showers should be restricted to family and friends.  And by "family" I mean people who are actually part of the expectant mother's life, not a 3rd cousin four times removed whom she's only seen once.  If that description fits 50 or more people, great.  If not you don't add to the numbers.

I think Gimmee Pig status would be earned if the total income of the couple is more than adequate to purchase the total value of the gifts.

Rohanna

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #2 on: March 21, 2013, 09:46:07 PM »
Why should my financial information be pertinant to whether or not I should have a shower? The only finances the guests should worry about are their own- and base whether they attend what they buy off of their own budget and feelings towards the couple. I am moderately well off- but I have debts and bills, and have to purchase all the things my family needs, yet by your standing I should not have a shower because I could buy things for myself. My sister in law is on public assistance- yet here that means she gets baby essentials bought for her- should she be told she doesn't get a shower because of that- or does the fact that she is low income mean she gets one? Where do you draw the line? Do you ask to see last years tax returns before you accept the invitation?

I think as long as the people invited know the couple well, the size of the guest list is irrelavent. It would be better, if the family is enormous, to perhaps split it up and host a shower for the mother's friends and one for the family - simply for logistical purposes of allowing the mom-to-be to spend time with her guests.  It only becomes gimme-piggish in my view when people are being invited who have no real connection, and their is little effort made by the host and/or mom to be to mingle and greet the attendees.
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Fragglerocker

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2013, 09:59:49 PM »
Why should my financial information be pertinant to whether or not I should have a shower? The only finances the guests should worry about are their own- and base whether they attend what they buy off of their own budget and feelings towards the couple. I am moderately well off- but I have debts and bills, and have to purchase all the things my family needs, yet by your standing I should not have a shower because I could buy things for myself. My sister in law is on public assistance- yet here that means she gets baby essentials bought for her- should she be told she doesn't get a shower because of that- or does the fact that she is low income mean she gets one? Where do you draw the line? Do you ask to see last years tax returns before you accept the invitation?

I think as long as the people invited know the couple well, the size of the guest list is irrelavent. It would be better, if the family is enormous, to perhaps split it up and host a shower for the mother's friends and one for the family - simply for logistical purposes of allowing the mom-to-be to spend time with her guests.  It only becomes gimme-piggish in my view when people are being invited who have no real connection, and their is little effort made by the host and/or mom to be to mingle and greet the attendees.

Yeah--I never brought up the finances of the couple and I don't think it's relevant to "gimmepig" behavior. 

I think you're right that if it gets beyond a certain number, if there really are that many people who are supposed to be included, then it should be split up so that the Guest of Honor can mingle.

In the case I originally mentioned, I think it would have been better if the large group the mom to be is a member of had decided to have one of their own host a "group-only" shower and have the rest of us (friends & family) host a separate shower.   

As it was, the shower was such that the MTB mingled for maybe 10 minutes at the start of the shower before being hustled into a seat in front of the large room and spent the next two hours just opening gift after gift.  I know she did not have an opportunity to talk to 90%  of her guests as after sitting for 2 hours watching gifts being opened most guests just left.  But when you have about 90 presents to open (and with baby gifts, many times a "gift" is a bag containing  multiple small items) it takes *forever* to open all of them. 

I would have much preferred to have a small shower with just her friends & family so we could have actually spent time together.   (She did take the hostesses out on another day for a thank-you coffee and we could actually chat about her upcoming motherhood.  That part was nice!)

LadyR

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #4 on: March 21, 2013, 10:08:28 PM »
My husband's culture tends to have huge showers. Easily 80-100 people (my 40 person shower was "small"), but they also tend to have 400-700 people weddings. It was a bit of a culture shock for me, for sure, but not gimme-pig (monatary gifts are the norm, but its also a sit down meal with fancy centerpieces and favours, like a wedding just for women). Baby showers tend to be smaller.

My baby showers each hads about 15-20 people invited, so 30-40 total. Close friends for the first shower and relatives and friends of my mother's who had watched me grow up at the second. I don't think there's necessaruly a cut-off number (though I'm used to relatively small, intimate showers), but a closeness level. If you aren't normally going to be invited to a gathering at my house, its probably not appropriate to invite you to my shower. For relatives/my mother's friends, I limited it to ones who had been a big part of my life growing up, though I actually had two distant relatives ask to be invited (and one of them sent a wedding present though she wasn't invited), which I found a little weird but kind of flattering (I had another distant relative send a baby and wedding gift, so my distant relatives might just be odd).


WillyNilly

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #5 on: March 21, 2013, 10:10:21 PM »
Lets see... I have 3 maternal aunts, and 1 paternal aunt, and 6 aunt-in-laws. I have 6 adult (female) cousins and 4 (female) adult cousins-in-law. I have my mom, my step-mom, my mother-in-law and my step-mother-in-law. And 2 sister-in-laws. Oh and a grandma-in-law. And then there is the long term girlfriend of one of my BILs... So that's 28 before I even have a friend, neighbor or co-worker invited. And it doesn't count my teenage cousins, or my niece. Or my 5 step-aunts, and 2 step-cousins (female).

I had 50-something at my bridal shower. I didn't consider it gimme-piggish. In fact I was quite overwhelmed and extraordinarily humbled by the gifts, not expectant of them. Its just I come from a big family and married into a big family. And I have friends.

It is what it is. I don't judge women without siblings or cousins, why should I be judged because I do have them?  I certainly had so say in obtaining them!

LeveeWoman

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #6 on: March 21, 2013, 10:19:55 PM »
Lets see... I have 3 maternal aunts, and 1 paternal aunt, and 6 aunt-in-laws. I have 6 adult (female) cousins and 4 (female) adult cousins-in-law. I have my mom, my step-mom, my mother-in-law and my step-mother-in-law. And 2 sister-in-laws. Oh and a grandma-in-law. And then there is the long term girlfriend of one of my BILs... So that's 28 before I even have a friend, neighbor or co-worker invited. And it doesn't count my teenage cousins, or my niece. Or my 5 step-aunts, and 2 step-cousins (female).

I had 50-something at my bridal shower. I didn't consider it gimme-piggish. In fact I was quite overwhelmed and extraordinarily humbled by the gifts, not expectant of them. Its just I come from a big family and married into a big family. And I have friends.

It is what it is. I don't judge women without siblings or cousins, why should I be judged because I do have them?  I certainly had so say in obtaining them!

You touched on something that's been lurking in my mind: the specter of envy.

I am not categorically ascribing the impetus against large showers, or multiple showers, to this impulse, but I cannot help but wonder whence some of the vehemence I've seen lately.

Deetee

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #7 on: March 21, 2013, 10:23:09 PM »
Nope, I don't think it has to do with the max number of guests by itself. I think it does indirectly as my definition involves inviting people who you have not or would not reciprocate the generosity.

There is some wiggle room for the family to reciprocate as opposed to the actual recipient.

chibichan

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2013, 10:31:17 PM »
I think the gimmepig criteria boils down to this :

Are you inviting people you barely know , rarely interact with or don't really like simply to increase the gift expectations ? That's gimmepig .

If you are fortunate to have a large circle of friens and family who you know would want to be included in the event then it doesn't matter how large your shower is .

It's not about the number of people you invite , it's about the reason why you invited them .
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Venus193

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2013, 10:37:03 PM »
I think the gimmepig criteria boils down to this :

Are you inviting people you barely know , rarely interact with or don't really like simply to increase the gift expectations ? That's gimmepig .

If you are fortunate to have a large circle of friens and family who you know would want to be included in the event then it doesn't matter how large your shower is .


It's not about the number of people you invite , it's about the reason why you invited them .

The bolded is what I really mean.  If you have a hundred friends and relatives, no problem.

otterwoman

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2013, 10:38:38 PM »
I don't think there's a number per se, but an attitude. If you are inviting people because you love them, they mean something to you, and you want to celebrate with them, AND you can afford to host them, then invite as many as you want. If you are inviting them to up the gift count, and you are not able or willing to host properly (not enough seating/food/drinks), then you've hit gimme pig status.


Bluenomi

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #11 on: March 21, 2013, 10:41:18 PM »
I don't think you can base it on numbers because some people have big families and/or lots of friends.

But if the registry only has gifts that cost upwards of $50 and lots of big ticket items, I'd start thinking about piggies.

Venus193

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #12 on: March 21, 2013, 10:46:57 PM »
I don't think you can base it on numbers because some people have big families and/or lots of friends.

But if the registry only has gifts that cost upwards of $50 and lots of big ticket items, I'd start thinking about piggies.

I apologise for the tone of my initial post, but the first baby shower I ever attended was at a job that I had before I found my profession. 

It was for the most senior female in the place who owned a percentage of the company and the hostess was my immediate supervisor who was looking to kiss up.  She assigned gifts to the other guests, some of which cost two days' pay.  This was so wrong it soured me on workplace baby showers for quite a while.  The MTB signed our paychecks and was raking in enough money to equal all of our salaries combined.  We had no social interaction outside of work and she was a female dog besides.

This was completely inappropriate and there was resentment for weeks afterward.

baglady

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #13 on: March 21, 2013, 10:47:20 PM »
I see some holes in this theory. Only the person in line to get the gifts can be labeled a gimme pig. And people don't throw their own showers. These days it's common for a bride-/mom-to-be's church group, co-workers or both to throw her a shower. Sometimes those groups are large. If the guest list for a church or work shower is long, it's not because the GOH is a gimme pig; it's because the custom is to invite everyone in the group.

We've read stories here about BTBs and MTBs who breathed down the necks of their shower organizers and pressed them to invite Great-Aunt Gertie and all the 13th cousins twice removed, even if the organizer couldn't afford to host so many, because presents! So yes, it happens. But I don't think it's as simple as "long guest list = greedy GOH."
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peaches

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Re: Max number of guests before gimmepigdome is imputed?
« Reply #14 on: March 21, 2013, 11:04:21 PM »
A shower is thrown for you, not by you. In that way, it is a gift to the mother-to-be. A sensitive MTB, if asked to contribute a guest list, will ask the host(s) "how many were you planning on hosting?" or something to that effect (assuming it isn't a surprise party).

Most of the showers I've been to have had 15-30 guests, and that's a good size for socializing, and not too long of a gift-opening.

I can imagine a larger group would be fine, too. I think it might make gift-opening challenging. That's one of the times when not opening gifts at the party would seem sensible, but I'm not sure how that usually plays out in a larger group.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2013, 11:09:55 PM by peaches »