Pre-wedding Parties

Forced Bridal Shower

Hi all,

I declined to have a bridal shower several times.  

FH and I live in NJ and our families are from Ohio and Michigan. Both sides wanted to throw a shower and I graciously declined both times. It would have been a lot to try and make it back to Ohio and Michigan for two separate showers. Factoring in travel, vacation time, money, and trying to get the gifts back to south Jersey was logistically daunting.   

Our wedding is on 5/19 and we going to be in Ohio a few days earlier to handle so pre-wedding things and FMIL called me and told me that the Wednesday before her and my mom reserved a room at a restaurant so I can have a bridal shower. I have no clue who is coming or what to expect. I feel bad because this is something that they REALLY want me to have and I have no interest – I have wedding fatigue and I just can’t wait to marry my FH. I also don’t want to seem like I’m not grateful for the time they put into planning this shower. It’s honestly the last thing I want to worry about 3 days before my wedding.

Am I wrong to feel this way?

Re: Forced Bridal Shower

  • No, I don't think you are wrong to feel the way you do.  You politely declined and they refused to accept that.  I actually think it is rude on their part to force this on you. And if they really wanted to do something that you wanted they would have accepted the decline and moved on.  To me, this shower is more for them then it is you.

    I would be tempted to talk to your Mom and voice your feelings in a respectful manner.  Let her know that you of course will come but that you don't appreciate her and your FMIL not listening to you and also for throwing this on you at the last minute.  They really put you in a tough spot because if you refuse to go you are going to look like an ungrateful brat (which of course isn't the case).
    Thank you. I was feeling a bit ungrateful. 

    When FMIL called me I guess I did not give her the reaction she expected because my mom called me and asked me if I was mad. I did tell her I was not mad, but the last thing I wanted to do was worry about ANOTHER wedding event days before the actual wedding. She said she did not understand why I was worried about it because I don't have to do anything  :|  

    You are right - it does seem like this shower is more for them. FH and I kept the wedding planning on the down low because both moms can be pushy. I guess this is their way of contributing, which is thoughtful, just a little bothersome. 
  • You're not wrong at all. You repeatedly told them what you wanted, and they didn't listen. Invites may have gone out for this event already since it's in a few weeks, but could you talk to your mom about maybe making it just a dinner, not a shower? That way they could still host something but you wouldn't be in the awkward position with gifts. 
    short+sassy
  • Ugh, that is so frustrating they wouldn't listen to you all.  But I would also feel obligated to go, if I was in your all's shoes.

    I got married OOT also.  It would have been an impossible crunch in time to even attend a shower and the gift logistics would have been silly also.  As it was, I got two boxed gifts at my wedding.  They were lovely and we liked them but, I told my mom the next day that if they didn't fit into the other packages she was mailing me, to not bother sending them and she could keep them.  Fortunately, she was able to fit them in with other things.  But it can be a problem if a gift is too heavy and/or awkward to make it even worth shipping.  I appreciated that most of the guests gave cash/checks and the other few had boxed gifts mailed to my personal home. 

    I'm assuming that invites have already gone out but, if they haven't, I would have them rename this event something that doesn't have the word "shower" in it, if you all are worried about having to lug/ship a bunch of gifts back home.  Because a shower is a gift giving event, though you might get boxed gifts no matter what it is called.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    ahoywedding
  • No, I don't think you are wrong to feel the way you do.  You politely declined and they refused to accept that.  I actually think it is rude on their part to force this on you. And if they really wanted to do something that you wanted they would have accepted the decline and moved on.  To me, this shower is more for them then it is you.

    I would be tempted to talk to your Mom and voice your feelings in a respectful manner.  Let her know that you of course will come but that you don't appreciate her and your FMIL not listening to you and also for throwing this on you at the last minute.  They really put you in a tough spot because if you refuse to go you are going to look like an ungrateful brat (which of course isn't the case).
    Thank you. I was feeling a bit ungrateful. 

    When FMIL called me I guess I did not give her the reaction she expected because my mom called me and asked me if I was mad. I did tell her I was not mad, but the last thing I wanted to do was worry about ANOTHER wedding event days before the actual wedding. She said she did not understand why I was worried about it because I don't have to do anything  :|  

    You are right - it does seem like this shower is more for them. FH and I kept the wedding planning on the down low because both moms can be pushy. I guess this is their way of contributing, which is thoughtful, just a little bothersome. 
    I totally get where you're coming from; my mom was way more in to wedding stuff and how things "were supposed to be" than I was. They are definitely wrong for forcing the issue and they really should have listened to you. 

    At this point I think you just have to decide if it's worth pushing it, telling them to cancel the plans (that are only a few weeks away), or sucking it up and dealing with it later. Either is fine, but it might be easier to go with the party for now, but talk to them later (calmly, politely) and tell them how you felt they didn't listen to you, and that you really did not want another event associated with the wedding. 
  • ei34ei34 member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    You have an amazing attitude and outlook and I’m blown away by your patience.  I’d be super frustrated right now.  I’d attend the shower since it’s so close and guests have already been invited, but I’d text them together so it’s in writing as well as tell them in person that this is the last time I’d attend an ambushed, forced event.  Like if they pull this for a baby shower in a few years, I wouldn’t go.  (If you’re thinkimg of having kids..if not, replace with some other big event.). Sorry you’re dealing with this  :#
    charlotte989875ahoyweddingNBSquared2017short+sassy
  • eileenrob said:
    You have an amazing attitude and outlook and I’m blown away by your patience.  I’d be super frustrated right now.  I’d attend the shower since it’s so close and guests have already been invited, but I’d text them together so it’s in writing as well as tell them in person that this is the last time I’d attend an ambushed, forced event.  Like if they pull this for a baby shower in a few years, I wouldn’t go.  (If you’re thinkimg of having kids..if not, replace with some other big event.). Sorry you’re dealing with this  :#
    That is exactly what I'm thinking will happen; attend the shower now, but be clear that this is not going to happen in the future and if they try it you won't be showing up and they can explain to all the guests why you're not there. 
    NBSquared2017
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    Ugh, I'd be tempted to have a "flight delay" that meant I didn't make it to town until Wednesday night. This is so unfair of them to ambush you like this. 

    Being just a couple of weeks away, you're probably better to just suck it up and go, but I'd be certain to have a conversation with both of them that this is not ok and will not be tolerated in the future. 
    NBSquared2017InLoveInQueens
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited April 2018
    I think you need to make it crystal clear to both mothers that from now on, if either or both unilaterally plan an event that is ostensibly in your honor but doesn't take your needs and feelings into account, then you won't be showing up and it will be up to them to explain this to their guests.

    If it's possible for you to discreetly let your family members and friends know that, going forward, you aren't authorizing either mother to plan any events for you and they should check with you before accepting or declining any invitations they receive to such events, I would do that. If there isn't, then hopefully you can come up with another solution that works for you without putting your family members and friends in the middle.
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    A quick update:

    The invites have already been sent out, I am going to go because I do not want to be rude to the people who were gracious enough to attend a shower 3 days before my wedding (it sounds so ridiculous typing that out)

    I did explain to both of them that I can’t have this sort of intrusion in the future. They are excited (so am I!), but they did not think about how their decisions would affect me. I told them thank you, but as they know I am a purposeful person and there is always a reason behind my actions. The shower is a go, hopefully, there’s lots of wine!

    You have a great attitude. I accepted a shower I didn't really want (key difference is accepted) and from there it spiraled into something I really did not want to attend - because it was more for the host than for me. Good for you for sucking it up for the sake of the blameless guests, but yes, the moms should be aware that in future no means no, and that not everyone wants the same things in life (in this case, the same pre-wedding events).

    I'm laughing at your mom's idea that you don't have to do anything, because as an introvert you absolutely do have to spend time and energy greeting, thanking, socializing, not to mention what to do with the gifts. I don't know if you're an introvert, but regardless, good luck and I hope you have fun with the guests who are there.
    NBSquared2017levioosathisismynickname2
  • I like the idea of spreading the word to key family members what you do and don't like in case this comes up in the  in the future.

    For now, I'd show up dressed nicely with a smile on my face.  It's annoying but it's annoying with an attempt at some decent intentions. 
    NBSquared2017
  • A quick update:

    The invites have already been sent out, I am going to go because I do not want to be rude to the people who were gracious enough to attend a shower 3 days before my wedding (it sounds so ridiculous typing that out)

    I did explain to both of them that I can’t have this sort of intrusion in the future. They are excited (so am I!), but they did not think about how their decisions would affect me. I told them thank you, but as they know I am a purposeful person and there is always a reason behind my actions. The shower is a go, hopefully, there’s lots of wine!

    You have a great attitude. I accepted a shower I didn't really want (key difference is accepted) and from there it spiraled into something I really did not want to attend - because it was more for the host than for me. Good for you for sucking it up for the sake of the blameless guests, but yes, the moms should be aware that in future no means no, and that not everyone wants the same things in life (in this case, the same pre-wedding events).

    I'm laughing at your mom's idea that you don't have to do anything, because as an introvert you absolutely do have to spend time and energy greeting, thanking, socializing, not to mention what to do with the gifts. I don't know if you're an introvert, but regardless, good luck and I hope you have fun with the guests who are there.

    ***STIB***

    I'm an extrovert when I need to be - if that makes sense. I don't mind socilalizing, but I have to take time to recharge. Expending the energy to socialize Wednesday, at the rehersal dinner, and the wedding is alot. 

    I'll get through it! At the end of the day I'm marrying FH and that's all that matters!
    I call that "work mode" for me. That's actually the definition of an introvert - not that you don't like being out with people, just that it costs you energy and you recharge by being alone or with a few close people. Extroverts get "charged up" by being with lots of people.

    Good luck!
      Definitely do not get a charge from being around people - it's emotionally draining at times! The constant smiling and talking...ugh. And here I had the definition wrong all along...it all makes perfect sense  :#  
  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer

    You should leave all the shower presents in a pile in your mom's living room with a note on top that says:

    Please ship to (your address)

    As I read down the thread this is exactly what I was thinking, haha. 
    ________________________________


Sign In or Register to comment.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards