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Etiquette

omg.... I want to pull my hair out! What do I do!? SOS

Hello all... I believe this is the correct board for this but if it isnt, politely let me know and I will move it. 

This is a what would you do post.  I am getting married next May.  I have a strange family situation.  I do not have that good of a relationship with my dad and his side of the family.  They are not contributing anything to the wedding because I feel they (they meaning my step mother) has an ulterior motive for wanting to give money.  She has been going on and on about throwing me a bridal shower.  I told her that I was pretty sure it was my bridal party's job.  She shrugged off what I said but didnt say anything about it.  Now, she has reached out to my FI mother about throwing me a shower in PA, WI, and GA (family in these areas).  My FI mom kinda shrugged it off and said they didnt have to talk about it so far before the wedding.  SHE EVEN BOUGHT A BRIDAL SHOWER ETIQUETTE BOOK! Now, I get a phone call from her and saying that my older sister (whom I've met once) wants to throw me a shower in WI because she wont be able to make it to the wedding.  THEN my step mother began rattling off all of these family members from my dad's side that I have either met once or never met or not related that would come to the showers in WI and GA because they probably wouldnt be able to come to the wedding.  I WASNT PLANNING ON INVITING THEM.  I dont know what to do and I want to rip my hair out and I really shouldnt. 

How do I tell her it's not her job to throw me a bridal shower, its my bridal party's job AND that I wasnt planning on inviting dad's side of the family to the wedding?  She is already going to be pissed off because she had made it a point to tell me that my dad is going to walk me down the aisle.  I am not going to have him walk me down the aisle.  I was in foster care and I was planning on having my foster father walk me down the aisle.  Ive known my real father for about 7 years and during that time he hasnt really played a big part in my life.  My foster father I have known for 8 years and he has played a HUGE part in me turning my life around.  But now I dont think I'm going to have anyone walk me down the aisle because I dont need that drama.  AND she is probably going to be pissed off because I am not going to have her daughter be a bridesmaid.  She is my half sister and I really am not close to her. 

What do I do? 

:( It just makes me want to cry.
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Re: omg.... I want to pull my hair out! What do I do!? SOS

  • Micqs said:
    Hello all... I believe this is the correct board for this but if it isnt, politely let me know and I will move it. 

    This is a what would you do post.  I am getting married next May.  I have a strange family situation.  I do not have that good of a relationship with my dad and his side of the family.  They are not contributing anything to the wedding because I feel they (they meaning my step mother) has an ulterior motive for wanting to give money.  She has been going on and on about throwing me a bridal shower.  I told her that I was pretty sure it was my bridal party's job.  She shrugged off what I said but didnt say anything about it.  Now, she has reached out to my FI mother about throwing me a shower in PA, WI, and GA (family in these areas).  My FI mom kinda shrugged it off and said they didnt have to talk about it so far before the wedding.  SHE EVEN BOUGHT A BRIDAL SHOWER ETIQUETTE BOOK! Now, I get a phone call from her and saying that my older sister (whom I've met once) wants to throw me a shower in WI because she wont be able to make it to the wedding.  THEN my step mother began rattling off all of these family members from my dad's side that I have either met once or never met or not related that would come to the showers in WI and GA because they probably wouldnt be able to come to the wedding.  I WASNT PLANNING ON INVITING THEM.  I dont know what to do and I want to rip my hair out and I really shouldnt. 

    How do I tell her it's not her job to throw me a bridal shower, its my bridal party's job AND that I wasnt planning on inviting dad's side of the family to the wedding?  She is already going to be pissed off because she had made it a point to tell me that my dad is going to walk me down the aisle.  I am not going to have him walk me down the aisle.  I was in foster care and I was planning on having my foster father walk me down the aisle.  Ive known my real father for about 7 years and during that time he hasnt really played a big part in my life.  My foster father I have known for 8 years and he has played a HUGE part in me turning my life around.  But now I dont think I'm going to have anyone walk me down the aisle because I dont need that drama.  AND she is probably going to be pissed off because I am not going to have her daughter be a bridesmaid.  She is my half sister and I really am not close to her. 

    What do I do? 

    :( It just makes me want to cry.

    First of all, it's not your Bridesmaid's "job" to throw you a shower.  No one has to throw you a shower.  If you don't want to accept the shower from your stepmother, tell her thank you, but no thank you.  Explain that you appreciate her efforts, but you'd rather not have so many showers in different locations.  If someone else does host a shower for you, make sure she gets an invitation.


     

    jendemeyer
  • kryan32kryan32 member
    100 Comments 25 Love Its Name Dropper

    Take a deep breath and try to relax - this is a lot of drama so far in advance of your wedding and it will probably get more intense as it gets closer.

    Since you have a whole year, this is a good time to "set the tone" with your step mother.  When you decline things, make it about you so that there's no room for argument.  "that's very nice of you to offer to host a shower for me in Wisconsin but we're not going to be able to afford to invite those relatives to the wedding, so a shower there wouldn't be appropriate." 

    Don't let her get you all frazzled and don't give in to anything you feel uncomfortable with.  She sounds like she's very used to getting her own way so you'll have to be firm but polite with her...

    But put it off for tonight - drink a glass of wine and let yourself relax before you confront her.

    Take care,
    Kim

     

     

  • MicqsMicqs member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    First of all, it's not your Bridesmaid's "job" to throw you a shower; No one has to throw you a shower.; If you don't want to accept the shower from your stepmother, tell her thank you, but no thank you.Explain that you appreciate her efforts, but you'd rather not have so many showers in different locations If someone else does host a shower for you, make sure she gets an invitation.

    Not at all what a meant. By "job" I was talking etiquette and traditional duty. No one has to throw me a shower. I get that

    [Deleted User]
  • Ditto all PPs. It is no one's "job" to throw you a shower; you can decline any and all showers you're offered if you don't like the hostess; and no one not invited to the wedding can be invited to the shower. Just keep bean-dipping her. Good luck!!
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    I'm gonna go with 'not my circus, not my monkeys.'
  • As PPs have pointed out it is NOT your bridal party's job to throw you a shower.  If you turn down the shower from your SM (which you can totally do, and probably should given how she's already acting about the guest list) you may not get a shower at all, so you have to be okay with that. 

    You are correct that you should not invite anyone to a shower that isn't invited to the wedding; so if she is involved in any shower planning you need to lock that down.  I think you probably need to have a sit down chat with dad and SM and let them know the guest list situation (i.e. "these are the family members I'm already inviting; you can have X additional seats to have more extended family and/or friends if you'd like")

    As for walking down the aisle - I'm personally of the opinion that you should always be able to ask who you want; no one should make you feel crappy about that decision.  If you want your foster dad you shouldn't have to forego that tradition.  For all of these once you've said your piece "you get X guests" "I've already picked my bridal party" "foster dad is walking me" utilize PP's bean-dipping.  refuse to talk about it any further.

    goodplan86
  • MicqsMicqs member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    It is very far in advance and I know the drama is going to get worse. She is one who likes to get her way.

    And I really didn't mean the shower is a job. I could care less if I had one. My problem is her pushiness. I know traditionally a bridal shower is given by the bridal party. Traditionally engagement parties are thrown by moms. I didn't want an engagement party. Our friends and families are spread out and it would be inconvenient. I was simply asking in this post what to do with handling the situation in terms of telling her I don't want showers nor do I want to invite my dads side of the family.
  • Micqs said:
    First of all, it's not your Bridesmaid's "job" to throw you a shower; No one has to throw you a shower.; If you don't want to accept the shower from your stepmother, tell her thank you, but no thank you.Explain that you appreciate her efforts, but you'd rather not have so many showers in different locations If someone else does host a shower for you, make sure she gets an invitation. Not at all what a meant. By "job" I was talking etiquette and traditional duty. No one has to throw me a shower. I get that


    Actually, the etiquette part is where no one has a duty to throw you a shower.  And traditionally, it was the brides mother or grandmother to throw showers.  Bridesmaids often threw bachelorette parties. 

    I appreciate your clarification saying that wasn't what you meant. Of course, in a written forum, we can only go by what you type.  And  you said at least twice that it was your bridal party's "job".

    My advice still remains though.  Just decline politely.  You are going to have to suck it up and have a conversation to decline instead of just passively trying to change the subject.

  • cmgilpin said:


    Actually, the etiquette part is where no one has a duty to throw you a shower.  And traditionally, it was the brides mother or grandmother to throw showers.  Bridesmaids often threw bachelorette parties. 

    I appreciate your clarification saying that wasn't what you meant. Of course, in a written forum, we can only go by what you type.  And  you said at least twice that it was your bridal party's "job".

    My advice still remains though.  Just decline politely.  You are going to have to suck it up and have a conversation to decline instead of just passively trying to change the subject.

    I thought it was against etiquette for family (namely mothers) to throw a shower for their daughter because it is essentially them asking for gifts for their family?  Is that a relatively new etiquette rule?  Maybe 'traditionally' means way long ago in the past??
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  • jenn5628 said:
    cmgilpin said:


    Actually, the etiquette part is where no one has a duty to throw you a shower.  And traditionally, it was the brides mother or grandmother to throw showers.  Bridesmaids often threw bachelorette parties. 

    I appreciate your clarification saying that wasn't what you meant. Of course, in a written forum, we can only go by what you type.  And  you said at least twice that it was your bridal party's "job".

    My advice still remains though.  Just decline politely.  You are going to have to suck it up and have a conversation to decline instead of just passively trying to change the subject.

    I thought it was against etiquette for family (namely mothers) to throw a shower for their daughter because it is essentially them asking for gifts for their family?  Is that a relatively new etiquette rule?  Maybe 'traditionally' means way long ago in the past??

    Actually, yes, when I was saying "traditionally", I'm talking way back in the day when mother's gave their daughters hope chests and threw showers for their daughters.   More recent, but still old school "tradition" says it should be someone other than the mother. Like a sister or friend.  And more recently, etiquette has somewhat gone back to it being "ok" for a mother throwing a shower.


     

  • Okay, that's what I thought! Thanks for clearing it up!
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  • If you don't want her to throw you a shower, just tell her that "it's so early in the planning, at this point, I don't know if I'd like to have a shower but thank you so much for offering." You don't need to go into any more detail than that. You're very early in the planning process and this will likely not be the only time people will try to push and shove their way into being involved. Stand your ground and be firm, but polite if you don't want someone involved. It'll be really hard if you're a 'people pleaser' but you will thank yourself in the end. 
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  • Not sure if it would work but can you tell her "I appreciate that you want to have all these showers for me for family that won't be able to come, but I feel weird inviting people to the shower that won't be at the wedding"

    Sounds like you're going to have a lot of battles with her during the planning process. Best piece of advice I can give you is this "Thank you for that idea, I'll check into that" with a smile, it's a great way to get people to drop things and let them share their ideas. On some of them you may actually have to "check into it" and tell her I looked into it but it wouldn't work for xxxx reason. This way you are entertaining her ideas but still doing things your way. It seemed to me that as long as certain people thought their input was being taken into account, they were happy.

    goodplan86
  • Weezy56Weezy56 member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    You are within your right to decline her shower offer. You are also within your right to not discuss the guest list, your bridal party, who's walking you down the aisle, etc. just tell her thanks but no thanks whenever she brings it up. Easy peasy.

  • Sorry you're being nitpicked on here for word choice - I think most people understood that by "job" you meant it's usually done by bridesmaids, which in my experience is true. maybe i have exceptional reading comprehension.

    that aside, congrats for making it through the last many years of life changes and keeping such a good outlook. I think you can just tell her that you're still in the early stages of wedding planning and would like to wait for any showers until you and FI (stress FI) have had time to register and finalize the guest list. I think that's a little hard to argue with. 

    Good luck getting through the drama!! stay calm, lean on FI, and don't feel bad about being clear about what you would like.

     

    goodplan86
  • I agree with what a lot of people have already said. Even though you're not close with your dad, stepmother, or that side of the family it should be recognized that it's very gracious of her to offer. You should certainly thank her for offering to host an event in your honor. I'd also let her know that you only plan on inviting people to the shower who are invited to the wedding & you don't want to cause uneasy feelings among family members who may not be invited to the shower & wedding. If she insists, just keep firm and repeat that you wouldn't want to solicit gifts from them if they're not invited to the shower/wedding.

    As an aside, I wouldn't expect your bridesmaids to throw you a shower. They already have a lot of time/monetary commitments leading up to your wedding.
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Actually, it's no one's "job" to give you a shower, although traditionally mothers, stepmothers, and other close relatives aren't supposed to because it has the appearance of soliciting gifts for a relative.

    That said, even though you're not close to your stepmother, this is not a hill I would die on.  Maybe it would be the start of a better relationship with her and your father if you did let her give you a shower, as long as everyone invited is also invited to the wedding.  If that's the reason you don't want her to do it (because you don't want to invite all her guests), you can stipulate that her guest list has to include only people already invited to the wedding.

    As for who walks you down the aisle, that's not up to her.  There is definitely no requirement that a biological parent who has not been close to you has to be allowed to walk you down the aisle.  That's entirely up to you.

    Best wishes!
  • LAM524LAM524 member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary First Answer
    I agree with PP! I would like to suggest that with all the planning and decisions ahead of you, DO NOT tell her anything until after the decisions are finalized and in place!! She may still pull a fit but then you have the shield of "whats done is done"....contracts are signed and purchases are final!!

    Happy planning! Btw..when is your wedding date? I too am marrying in May, the 24th! :)

    tinkerbell gif photo: Tinkerbell stuck in keyhole animated gif Peterpan2_coince9e.gif
  • kerbohlkerbohl member
    Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 1000 Comments First Answer
    What PP have said -- try not to mention anything to this woman about your wedding, politely decline the shower and thank her for offering, and keep changing the subject.  She sounds really really pushy, and I hope that you have the strength to deal with this throughout the whole wedding planning process.  And don't share any wedding advice.  I would suggest not even mentioning that your foster father is walking you down the aisle until much closer to the wedding date.  And if your step-mother and birth father have an issue, remind them that you have the right to have whoever you want to walk you down the aisle without inducing drama. 
    imageimage
  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer

    Sorry you're being nitpicked on here for word choice - I think most people understood that by "job" you meant it's usually done by bridesmaids, which in my experience is true. maybe i have exceptional reading comprehension.

    that aside, congrats for making it through the last many years of life changes and keeping such a good outlook. I think you can just tell her that you're still in the early stages of wedding planning and would like to wait for any showers until you and FI (stress FI) have had time to register and finalize the guest list. I think that's a little hard to argue with. 

    Good luck getting through the drama!! stay calm, lean on FI, and don't feel bad about being clear about what you would like.

     

    Actually you have terrible reading skills if you think "job" is an acceptable substitution for "often done by bridesmaids but not their job or responsibility."  Words actually have meanings.



    Kate61487Anastasia517
  • wittykitty14wittykitty14 member
    1000 Comments 250 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited May 2013

    PPs have given you great advice on everything you've said. 

    My biggest concern reading this is that in the future, I won't be surprised if SM starts verbally inviting these people to the wedding that you weren't planning to invite.  You and your FI might want to start thinking of ways to deal with that when and if it happens.

    Edited for clarity

  • Ha Vic, I'm a writer by trade so I think I have pretty good reading comprehension skills, and clearly by her response, my comprehension of her belief was correct. As job is defined as "a piece of work, especially a specific task done as part of the routine of one's occupation or for an agreed price," I understood she was not being literal, and tried to answer her actual question, not get caught in the weeds and berate her for wordchoice, like an nitpicky bizatch. Maybe because i'm actually in the middle of planning a wedding myself, I understand that in times of a little stress our word choice isn't perfect on message boards. Relax.

     

    LAM524CaminoBrideNerdyLucygoodplan86
  • LAM524LAM524 member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary First Answer
    @Bayside...I too am a writer! :) I agree with Vic words do have literal meaning! After all, to call someone an "ass" means he/she is from Africa, has 4 legs and eats grass! Right? :)

    tinkerbell gif photo: Tinkerbell stuck in keyhole animated gif Peterpan2_coince9e.gif
  • YES!! exactly. let's never be casual with our word choice on message boards! horrendous consequences could ensue....

    goodplan86
  • Are you really trying to suggest that accepted slang is the same as completely misusing a word?

     

    "traditionally I believe the BMs do this" =/= "it's the BM job".  At all.  Not the same.  As a writer I would think you'd have an appreciation for careful word choice to properly convey your intentions. 

    While it may not have been OPs intention her post and her wording was screaming "my BMs must throw me a shower".  You (@TheBaysideBride) have been around long enough to know we get plenty of brides on here who wholeheartedly believe that.  It wasn't at all unreasonable for people to point out to her that she shouldn't expect her BM to throw a shower.

    PrettyGirlLostAnastasia517
  • LAM524LAM524 member
    100 Love Its 100 Comments First Anniversary First Answer
    @Kate61487...Im not sure if you are asking me, but I do agree, accepted slang is absolutely different then misusing a word. For sure! I was really just having fun with BaysideBride! :)

    Regarding whose "job" it is to throw the shower, (even though I am 46, had been married @ 17, had no shower and have been involved with co-hosting others showers as a non-BM) I had no idea that it wasnt a "duty" of the BM's. (@ 17, I actually didnt even know such an celebratory event existed)  I think a lot of people do though. I dont know why/where it stems from and am very curious. Is this old school thinking? A change in times? Ignorance?

    I actually thought, more specifically, the bridal shower was to be organized by MOH and co-hosted by entire BM party vs. the bachelorette party being the sole responsibility of the MOH.

    Yes, I was one of those brides but without expectations, especially because this is my 2nd wedding. Seriously, this board enlightened me and I really appreciate realizing sound etiquette!! Way cool!!!

    btw....@StageManager14...your " Oh, for Petes sake" made me LOL!!! I dont ever hear that anymore! My dear old deceased Aunt use to say that out of frustration all the time but she was usually drunk and would always "spit" while fumbling, in her Irish accent, trying to get the word "Pete" out. The spit wasnt funny of course but her drunken frustration was...she was a cute, funny drunk! One glass of wine and she was "looped" as she would say!  (not saying that your old or drunk)! Thanks for the laugh! Boy, I am missing her now! :)

    tinkerbell gif photo: Tinkerbell stuck in keyhole animated gif Peterpan2_coince9e.gif
  • I always thought it was an absolute no-no for the MOB/SMOB/MOG/SMOG (or even grandmother's) to even throw a shower, that it looked gift grabby.
  • lringuelringue member
    10 Comments Second Anniversary 5 Love Its
    Im sorry for your stress. Ive been going through similar things but with my mom. The entire time Ive been planning my wedding she has been making me feel like crap. Im at the point of asking her who is really getting married and when people are going to care about my feelings and how I want my wedding to be. My fi has been telling me to say this for a while now but I dont think I have it in me. its unfortunate I cant wait for it to be over I was really looking forward to enjoying the planning part of the wedding and that didnt happen ...15 days left. Hope it goes well for you.
  • MicqsMicqs member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    I got the biggest laugh out of reading my board and replies. Thank you for that! I am going down there next Friday (good ole Georgia) for my brothers graduation. I'm just going to bring it up and pretty much say due to budget the guest list is limited to close friends and close relatives (truth). Going to let her know the only family from my side my FI and I are inviting are them, my foster family, and my grandparents. I appreciate the offer to host a shower but I think this far in advance is too early to plan anything especially with us not knowing where we are going to be in a years time (truth: FI and I are currently relocated in TN for his work. We could be here for the next month, 5 months, year, 2 years. Unknown. I think traveling and worrying about all that on top of actual planning will be too much. As you can tell I stress out really easy and hate confrontation :p). If she is going to be mad she can.
  • MicqsMicqs member
    10 Comments First Anniversary
    I'm so sorry! If you only have 2 weeks left I would just shrug it off. There is nothing she can do. :) relax. Do a spa day. Or just tell her to back off but that might not be a good choice :p it's your day and the start of a new life with you and your significant other :D i wish you well on your day!
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