News: IT'S THE 2ND ANNUAL GUATEMALA LIBRARY PROJECT BOOK DRIVE!    LOOKING FOR DONATIONS OF SCIENCE BOOKS THIS YEAR.    Check it out in the "Extending the Hand of Kindness" folder or here: http://www.etiquettehell.com/smf/index.php?topic=139832.msg3372084#msg3372084   

  • December 14, 2017, 02:19:42 AM

Login with username, password and session length

Author Topic: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish  (Read 6649 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Klea

  • Member
  • Posts: 64
Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« on: September 13, 2013, 12:28:26 AM »
Hi everyone, I'm a long-time lurker and first-time poster. Please feel free to give me directions if I make a mistake somewhere along the lines. I hope this isn't too long. I know there are a lot of baby shower topics but they've jogged my memory and I am wondering who was rude(r) in this situation.

BG - This happened nearly 8 years ago, in my first year out of high school. At the time I was living in my very small home-town. One of my former friends from school (Jane) was pregnant with her first child. She was a single mother-to-be and not in a great financial position. Though we were no longer super-close we still remained friendly.

One Saturday night I ran into Jane who excitedly invited me to her baby shower the very next day. I expressed that I wasn't sure I had been invited but she assured me that there were no 'formal' invitations, it was for family and whoever she felt like inviting. Not really knowing much about baby shower etiquette at the time, being put on the spot and wanting to be supportive of my friend, (okay and perhaps alcohol played its part), I reluctantly agreed to attend. I thought she needed a break and a friend during a difficult time.

Come the next morning and I was not so sure but resigned myself to going as I had told her I would. The dilemma was that on Sundays in my small town there were next to no stores open and I needed to get a gift for the shower. Due to a lack of options, I ended up going with cash and a nice card with a lovely personal message wishing her well and hoping the cash could go towards baby's first piggy-bank. I felt uncomfortable about the gift but it was the best I could do with such short notice and I assumed she would understand and appreciate the gesture.

The baby shower started off fine. She had few guests other than immediately family so in a way I felt glad to support her. The gift opening came around and we gathered to watch. She got around to my envelope, opened the card and taking the money out she loudly exclaimed to everyone, "Money only! I don't want money!". I was mortified and immediately offered an apology, explaining that I had no chance to get a gift after only being invited the night before. No apology from her and no thank you. Instead, she got up from her seat and thrust the money into my lap, repeating that she didn't want it. I was beyond embarrassed, offered a second apology and tried to insist she accept my gift. In the end, I sat quietly while she opened the rest of the gifts and thanked everyone else. Gifts over, I slipped the money amongst the other gifts while she wasn't looking, made my excuses and left.
After that, I decided not to have much to do with her again.

Older and wiser, today I would do things much differently and believe her behaviour was appallingly rude. But I wonder was I also rude to:
1. Attend what was clearly a shower organised by the mother-to-be (and badly at that).
2. Give cash as a gift in the absence of any other options. I didn't want to arrive empty-handed.

guihong

  • Member
  • Posts: 7008
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2013, 12:45:05 AM »
1. No, not rude.  Trying to help your friend trumped shower etiquette.

2. Not rude, and good thinking.  While money or checks may not be the "traditional" shower gift, the receiver is supposed to thank the giver warmly. 

I take it you never received a thank you note, either.

(And Welcome :))



AzaleaBloom

  • Member
  • Posts: 272
  • Help, I'm stepping into the twilight zone...
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2013, 08:29:12 AM »
You did absolutely nothing wrong.  Your friend was the extremely rude one in this situation.

KarenK

  • Member
  • Posts: 2109
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2013, 09:10:35 AM »
The only thing I would have done differently is to take my money when she thrust it at me and stood up and walked out, but I understand that you were young at the time and I'm not sure I would have done it 30 years ago.

You were absolutely not rude at all. She was appallingly so.

AffirmedHope

  • Member
  • Posts: 18
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2013, 10:00:20 AM »
You were fine. She was incredibly rude and disrespectful to you. Both with how she invited you and how she reacted to your gift.

Usually it's the other way around "But I wanted ONLY money!!" lol

mspallaton

  • Member
  • Posts: 261
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2013, 10:03:06 AM »
I received multiple checks at my shower and didn't find it rude in the least.  Quite the opposite -- I deeply appreciated the physical gifts as well as the cash - the gifts were wonderful, but the cash eased a lot of the pre-wedding stress by helping defray travel costs to and from the shower (mine was in a different state than where my husband and I live).  I can't imagine why someone would be offended by cash... it is rude, but also weird.

Thipu1

  • Member
  • Posts: 7439
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2013, 10:37:58 AM »
First of all, Welcome to E-Hell. 

Now, on to your questions.

You were not rude at all. Given the time constriction  of your invitation what you did was perfectly acceptable. It would have been fine under any circumstances.   

I have never known a gift of cash to be considered rude.  People don't always get what they want in the form of objects.  A gift of cash helps fill in the gaps. 

The MTB was the rude one.  Your gift was a last minute thing but you had no choice and it was thoughtful.

You were fine.   

shhh its me

  • Member
  • Posts: 7526
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #7 on: September 13, 2013, 11:08:20 AM »
 1 you were not rude.  It not rude to attended as a friend a shower hosted by the Mother of the guest of honor (it may be rude to invite you but you are not rude to attended) You're not rude to attended an event with a verbal invite from the guest of honor , you're not rude to attended an event when the invite was given with short notice.  * note sometimes people blurt out invites to cover their rudeness of talking about an event you were not invited to , it's not rude for you to take them at their word but a 12 hour invite is a clue you were not on the guests list. Of course some people really are "out of sight out of mind" and invite people when the run into them with utter sincerity* In this case she put in an effort to convince you of this. On top of that you said "yes" so of course you went. 

2 cash is not rude at ever shower I have ever been to a few people gave cash or a check.     

edited talk /take
« Last Edit: September 13, 2013, 04:57:49 PM by shhh its me »

metallicafan

  • Member
  • Posts: 710
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2013, 11:14:04 AM »
You did absolutely nothing wrong.  Your friend was the extremely rude one in this situation.

I agree. Her behavior was appalling.

 I personally received monetary gifts at my own baby shower and I was very grateful.  A monetary gift can be used towards a big ticket item that the mother to be had not already gotten as a gift.  Nothing wrong with that IMO.

m2kbug

  • Member
  • Posts: 2638
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2013, 11:45:53 AM »
Your friend was rude.  You gave her a nice gift and she should have accepted it graciously.  I understand your awkward feeling at the last minute invitation, but you were invited and you were not rude.  Shhh its me uses better words.  In no way were you out of line.  Your gift was generous and thoughtful. 

Texas Mom

  • Member
  • Posts: 3845
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #10 on: September 13, 2013, 12:12:45 PM »
You did absolutely nothing wrong.  Your friend was the extremely rude one in this situation.
^
This

My daughter's friends (early - mid 20's)  are transitioning from working single women to getting married & having babies.

I usually give a thoughtfully chosen card and cash for shower gifts.  They have all been appreciative.  I remember when I was a bride/young mother, cash was usually tight & I was able to buy something "needed" with any extra cash I had.

OP, your friend was beyond rude.

earthgirl

  • Member
  • Posts: 209
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #11 on: September 13, 2013, 12:24:04 PM »
I can't help but wonder what was the reason to her objection to the cash?  The only one I can come up with is that it could seem impersonal, but I wouldn't think twice about giving (or receiving) cash for a shower gift no matter how much notice was given to the gift-giver.

Or maybe she was thinking that it was rude to ask for cash and therefore rude to accept it? 

who knows.  No matter what, OP, you did nothing wrong here.

BeagleMommy

  • Member
  • Posts: 3919
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #12 on: September 13, 2013, 02:20:27 PM »
OP, you did nothing wrong.  The MTB was extremely rude.  I'm guessing she had a long list of wanted items on her registry and was expecting to receive every one of them at her shower.

Klea

  • Member
  • Posts: 64
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #13 on: September 13, 2013, 03:34:55 PM »
OP here. Thanks everyone for your replies.
I have always wondered about that day (especially as none of the other guests said anything/expressed sympathy). I'm glad to know that I didn't do anything wrong. To this day, I am unsure why she didn't want cash (she definitely needed it) but figure she just wanted to cause drama/make a scene.
Looking back, I am sure her shower was a relatively unplanned occasion - no formal invitations just verbal and no gift registry. I know she organised a shower for her second child as well and has very recently been posting informal invitations ('for anyone interested') on Facebook for a shower for her up-coming third child. You can probably gather what kind of person she is and why we are mere acquaintances now.

Klein Bottle

  • Member
  • Posts: 2329
Re: Showers and gift etiquette LONGish
« Reply #14 on: September 13, 2013, 03:38:45 PM »
You were fine; she was unspeakably rude.  Plenty of times I have given cash as a shower gift & it has always been greatly appreciated!  I received several cash gifts at my own baby shower, and it all went to finishing his nursery, and was thus very welcome. 

I don't know what this lady's problem was, but her behavior is both puzzling and mean.
Soft silly music is meaningful, magical