Etiquette

Not to sound bratty but

My mom brought up the topic of opening wedding gifts today. She started out saying that at weddings usually someone opens the gifts and then displays them and I just had this "oh god" moment... Thankfully she went on to say that it's not tasteful or what not and then said she had this great idea to have a gift opening party.

This is one of the things that I didn't think I'd have to worry about becuase I thought my mom is pretty tasteful when it comes to things. Anyway, I agreed to do it because I'll have to admit I've been pretty blunt with some of my rejections to her and I felt that she needs to have a great experience with this too. I kind of had an oh dear thought I realized that I have been kind of a bridezilla to her.

I guess bridezilla might be too harsh but not as accepting and welcoming to her ideas as I should be. I'm kind of controlling when it comes to things like this so, I'm learning that I just need to let go... Really in the grand scheme of things it really doesn't matter.

Anyway, I guess I'm not looking for advice on how to get out of it or anything but apparently I posted to vent and have a come to Jesus moment. Has anyone else had a gift opening party? Was it akward? I guess opening gifts at the shower wasn't as bad as I thought it would be...
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Re: Not to sound bratty but

  • I have heard in some circles these are common..but they are odd to me.

    We got a total of 3 actual gifts, and the rest were checks/cash.  I would never share how much people gave, so it would be an akward party.
  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    I have heard in some circles these are common..but they are odd to me. We got a total of 3 actual gifts, and the rest were checks/cash.  I would never share how much people gave, so it would be an akward party.
    Posted by HockeyFan4
    THIS is my biggest concern. Maybe I should mention that to her... Not in an opposing way but in a question like "So, how do I go about checks and stuff? What if we have very few actual gifts?"
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  • Does your mom really want another full on party for this or do you think you could talk her into it just being her and maybe a couple of other close family members? Maybe you could say you want some down time after all of the wedding festivities but you would love to have her over, drink some wine/punch and open the presents in a more relaxed manner. 
  • edited June 2012
    We are doing this too, only because its the only thing FMIL asked us to do.  We are doing it more like a day after brunch for family to hang out a little more and we will open the gifts during it.  I felt like I couldn't say no bc she is lonely and I think just wants another reason to see everyone (FI's dad passed away 2 months ago and she is having a really hard time).  I didn't want to upset her so we just agreed.  I hope its not terribly awkward.  I am hoping everyone will just mingle and eat and we will just open gifts quietly without making it into a big production.

    ETA:  We are only inviting close family and my best friend.  We are also not calling it a gift opening...I asked her to just call it a day after brunch.  I am glad I did this bc then, if we only get  a couple actual gifts it wont look so odd.  
    :)AJ Pregnancy Ticker
  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    Does your mom really want another full on party for this or do you think you could talk her into it just being her and maybe a couple of other close family members? Maybe you could say you want some down time after all of the wedding festivities but you would love to have her over, drink some wine/punch and open the presents in a more relaxed manner. 
    Posted by ArynBaker
    Party I don't think was as descriptive word as I should've used. It'll be my mom, dad, fiance, me, his dad and wife, his mom and husband. So, really it's not that many people and I think I might be overdramatizing it. But it still feels akward.
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  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    We are doing this too, only because its the only thing FMIL asked us to do.  We are doing it more like a day after brunch for family to hang out a little more and we will open the gifts during it.  I felt like I couldn't say no bc she is lonely and I think just wants another reason to see everyone (FI's dad passed away 2 months ago and she is having a really hard time).  I didn't want to upset her so we just agreed.  I hope its not terribly awkward.  I am hoping everyone will just mingle and eat and we will just open gifts quietly without making it into a big production. ETA:  We are only inviting close family and my best friend.  We are also not calling it a gift opening...I asked her to just call it a day after brunch.  I am glad I did this bc then, if we only get  a couple actual gifts it wont look so odd.  
    Posted by ajmom2two
    Great idea. Then it's not like you're making a show out of it and people feel obligated to watch.
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  • I can tell you that for my first wedding, and actually inmy social circle, that any gifts received before the wedding (received at my home) were opened and displayed on a nicely covered table. Checks weren't displayed, we just did a card with the persons name.  It's sort of a tradition.  

    Gifts received at the wedding reception weren't opened on the day. When the ex and I returned from our honeymoon, we unwrapped them at my parent's house, since they had taken them home for us. We had some mimosa's and bloody mary's but kept it amongst the four of us.


  • As long as it's just small, as you described, it sould be okay... with my ex and I, we opened the gifts at my parents house after we returned from our honeymoon. We had some brunchy type foods and mimosas.


  • In my circle, the shower is for boxed presents, and only monetary gifts are given at the actual wedding, so I've never heard of a "gift opening party" ... but it kind of sounds awkward to me.

    I'd go with the "Mom, don't people usually give cash at weddings?" argument if you really don't want to do it.

    *I felt sorry for my husband before I met him. Take a number.*
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  • It's very normal in my family.  Generally it's a day after brunch, very low key with just close family.  In our case, it was H and me, both sets of parents, all grandparents and my OOT aunt, uncle and cousins.  Mostly it was a time for us to hang out with them one last time before they left to go home and before we went on our honeymoon (everyone but parents and one set of grandparents was OOT).  We mostly opened the gifts that the people in attendance gave us, and a few others.  We did the rest after we got back from our honeymoon.

    Honestly, it wasn't that big of a deal.  most people were eating and chatting and not paying any attention to what we were doing.
  • It's very normal in my family.  Generally it's a day after brunch, very low key with just close family.  In our case, it was H and me, both sets of parents, all grandparents and my OOT aunt, uncle and cousins.  Mostly it was a time for us to hang out with them one last time before they left to go home and before we went on our honeymoon (everyone but parents and one set of grandparents was OOT).  We mostly opened the gifts that the people in attendance gave us, and a few others.  We did the rest after we got back from our honeymoon.

    Honestly, it wasn't that big of a deal.  most people were eating and chatting and not paying any attention to what we were doing.
  • Ramona your cats are freaking cute. The one hiding behind the towel reminds me of my cat KiKi. That argument of "don't people usually give cash" would be great except I was just telling her how someone bought our first china place setting. I don't really think I want to fight her on this at all anyway. I guess it's not that big of a deal and it'll make her happy.
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  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    It's very normal in my family.  Generally it's a day after brunch, very low key with just close family.  In our case, it was H and me, both sets of parents, all grandparents and my OOT aunt, uncle and cousins.  Mostly it was a time for us to hang out with them one last time before they left to go home and before we went on our honeymoon (everyone but parents and one set of grandparents was OOT).  We mostly opened the gifts that the people in attendance gave us, and a few others.  We did the rest after we got back from our honeymoon. Honestly, it wasn't that big of a deal.  most people were eating and chatting and not paying any attention to what we were doing.
    Posted by DramaGeek
    This is comforting Laughing
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  • strlzfan11strlzfan11
    Ninth Anniversary 1000 Comments Combo Breaker
    member
    edited June 2012
    What if you just opened the physical gifts in front of the folks your mom's inviting and then open the cards/cash in private?
  • I went over to my friend's parents' house the day after her wedding and watched her and her H open gifts. It was just the couple, their parents, and me. It wasn't awkward at all. It was kind of fun for me to see what they got, and I think their parents were just really excited to see the stuff they would have to start their new lives together.
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  • edited June 2012
    In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    We had immediate family, H's aunt and uncle and wedding party over the day after for brunch.  We opened the boxed gifts we received at the wedding. Like PP said, most people were watching football or eating so I think our moms are really the only ones who paid attention. We opened the cards when we were alone later that night.  I didn't care if anyone knew who gave us a blender, but no way was I opening cards with other people around.
    Posted by ILoveMilkDuds
    This is what I'm most worried about. I felt so akward when I opened a card at the shower to find a gift card in it. I quietly told my bridesmaid who was writing everything down what it was but felt so freaking weird about it. I didn't announce it I just said so and so sent us this card and gift.

    It just makes me really nervous too because my fiance comes from a family that isn't well off by any means and my family is "rich" to them. To open cards with checks and gift cards and announce or have people question how much they're for might make for some reall hurt feelings?

    I don't know. It's stupid to worry about but obviously planning this wedding has made me nuts.
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  • strlz that's a good idea. You guys have given some great advice I really appreciate it!
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  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    Ramona your cats are freaking cute. The one hiding behind the towel reminds me of my cat KiKi
    Posted by ILoveToRobot
    Aw, thanks! My parents found them dumped on the shoulder of a major highway last week (IRAAAAAAAAAGGGGGEEEEEEE!!!!). DH and I couldn't bear to separate them, so we agreed to take all 3 of them Smile

    *I felt sorry for my husband before I met him. Take a number.*
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  • Lisa50Lisa50
    2500 Comments 5 Love Its Combo Breaker
    member
    We did not have a gift opening party.  If you do not want to do it, just tell your mom it's not going to happen.
  • Those are some of the cutest little kitties!  I would have taken all 3 too!  

    OP I think I am going to save the cards to open in private.  
    :)AJ Pregnancy Ticker
  • I can understand opening physical gifts in front of others the day after the wedding but I wouldn't feel comfortable opening cash gifts. My father loves to stick his nose in our finances so I'm sure he'll ask us how much we got multiple times.

    For my brothers wedding last year he told me how much they had gotten in cash, several times. 
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    Anniversary
  • In Response to Re: Not to sound bratty but:
    I can understand opening physical gifts in front of others the day after the wedding but I wouldn't feel comfortable opening cash gifts. My father loves to stick his nose in our finances so I'm sure he'll ask us how much we got multiple times. For my brothers wedding last year he told me how much they had gotten in cash, several times
    Posted by achiduck
    Freaking weird. My sister keeps talking about how many gifts we're going to get and I'm like no, gifts aren't expected and some people don't give. I have a friend who had the same amount of guests and they got like 25 gifts. My sister keeps talking about the gifts and how we're going to get so many and I just keep thinking SHUT THE F UP! I DON'T CARE! I'm not worried about the gifts I was also SHOCKED at how much stuff we got at the shower. It'sunnecessary!

    I don't know I guess we give generously when it comes to things like this but I would never hope or expect from someone to give us something... It screams akward to me.

    Call me crazy but I love to give and dread getting even though I love getting lol
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  • The viewing of the physical gifts thing is an old tradition (particularly in society families in the South).  It's not a party where gifts are opened, but rather where gifts that have already been opened are on display in a room for the close relatives of the B&G can come have tea and see what gifts were given.

    It's a dying tradition. 
  • This is super common in my family still, usually as a morning-after brunch hosted by the bride's family for close family. Honestly, I think its more of an excuse to spend a little more time with family and close out of town relatives you don't get to see very often. The ones I've been too have all been very casual and people don't pay a ton of attention to the actual gift opening like PPs mentioned. Actual boxed gifts are common, too, though. Our wedding was at noon on Sunday, so we actually just had our families come hang out with us for a bit that night after dinner. We had rented the huge suite in the hotel for getting ready, so we had the room. Nothing fancy, but it was nice to have a few more hours with family.
  • I don't even want gifts we have no space for them and we won't use them. I'd rather just have my guests donate money to causes who could actually benefit from it. Money is great but all I want is my FI. And opening gifts would be super awkward for me. I don't like being the center of attention.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • hoffsehoffse
    Fifth Anniversary 1000 Comments 100 Love Its First Answer
    member
    I think you should compromise that you'll open physical gifts publicly and cash gifts privtely.  We're going to do a gift opening but it will literally be us, parents, and that's it.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • I wouldn't do it, but if you feel you have to, maybe you could just keep it small like PPs said, and don't open any cards. 
  • vexievexie
    100 Comments
    member

    We had a very intimate brunch the next morning with just my parents, the in-laws and my two young stepdaughters (we wanted to see the girls before we left for the honeymoon!)  My parents had all the gifts and envelopes so we had the brunch there and opened the gifts after we ate.... however when it came to the money we just read the card and kept the amount private.  No one bugged us to disclose the amounts.   

    84image 73image 11image Wedding date: June 11, 2011 :)
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