Baby Showers

Aas many of you know, I never had a traditional baby shower. Instead, the following three things have happened in the in the last few months:

  1. Once we announced our decision to adopt, I had one friend say she’s throw us and baby a shower when the time was right.  I politely said, we’ll see as it’s just too early for me to even contemplate a shower.  I’ve never heard anything else (nor have I asked).
  2. Once baby was part of our lives, my sister-in-law, said to me while we were still in the USA I’m going to talk with your step-mom, you have to have a baby shower as soon as you are home!!  You and Baby MPB deserve to be celebrated just like everyone else.  I nearly cried at her thoughtfulness and, I politely responded with don’t worry about it.  She wouldn’t help with my wedding shower, so I don’t expect anything for our son either.  As nothing has happened since I can only assume my step-mom declined to help or my sister-in-law chose not to pursue it based on my comment (which I understand).
  3. Mr. MPB’s mother helped throw his siblings wife’s baby shower back in the summer.  She actually helped put it on – organized invitations and RSVPs, travelled to be there, decorated, and bought food.  No baby shower has been mentioned for us.  Nothing, not a word.

I wont lie, I am bitter that our family has not done any sort of baby shower to celebrate our child.  I’m once again disappointed in our family.

Truthfully, I’m disappointed in my side of the family, but not surprised in the least.

And honestly, I’ve turned an ugly shade of green as I think of my mother-in-law supporting her other son’s wife and child but not ours.  I’ve been both jealous and bitter at the difference in how she’s treated the celebration of both her grandchildren joining our family just months apart.  I can’t help but wonder, is it because she favours one of her son’s over the other?  or a favourite wife? Or is it because Baby MPB is adopted?  I truthfully hope it has more to do with her favourite son then Baby MPB.  It breaks my heart to even think that it could have anything to do with adoption and/or to do with Baby MPB. Or better yet, maybe she’s just clueless?

And so, while I’m bitter and annoyed with our families, I have been making a conscious effort not to think about this.  Instead, I choose to focus on how thankful I am for the love that we have received.  I may not have a real baby shower, but I did have an amazing blogging community baby shower, which still brings tears to my eyes as I recall all the kindness and love that we received and the practical support in helping us prepare for our little guy.  More then anything, I’m thankful that my little family has experienced so much love from throughout the world.  I’m thankful that no-matter where Baby MPB chooses to go in his life, he will probably know someone who has loved him from afar before he even existed.  I am so excited to tell him all about you all and share the story of his modern day baby shower with him.

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43 Comments on “Baby Showers

  1. I’m so sorry about the response of both of your families. But I am glad for the love you are receiving from some of them and your friends and from this loving community! No matter what, Baby MBP will be loved!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I was wondering if your families were going to throw you a baby shower. And, quite frankly, it pisses me off that they haven’t! Especially since a couple people said they would and then dropped it. What does Mr. MPB think about his mom’s behavior? Do they have the type of relationship where he could talk to her about it? I do think it is very strange, but I’m hoping it’s clueless oversight on her part and not something to do with either favoritism or adoption. Either way, it’s very upsetting. I so wish I could throw you shower!

    Liked by 3 people

    • You did throw me a shower in your own internet cyber world way!! And that my friend, is so unbelievably amazing!!
      As for his mom’s behaviour, it’s pretty typical so at this point it is what it is. And, we both agree it’s just not a battle worth having with her. And the more I’ve thought about this, we do think it’s more of an oversight then anything else. Or at least that’s what I’m going to believe.

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  3. Maybe you could tell your SIL you do want a shower after all and force her and MIL to throw one :)? Kind of kidding because I know that might not be ideal but gosh darn it I want you to be able to celebrate that beautiful boy and show him off. I really wish we could all throw you a shower. Xo

    Liked by 5 people

    • I like this idea. She truly might have backed off based on your response (I probably would have) and if you give her the green light then she will probably go ahead. 🙂 X

      Liked by 4 people

      • It did occur to me that if I told someone I was planning to do something nice for them and their response was, “Don’t bother” and then to refer to some previous hurt … well, I’d probably shrug my shoulders and not bother. Just a thought … Maybe I’ve misunderstood what you wrote here.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Mamajo – you all did throw me a shower!!! And you, you did hte most amazing thing ever when I met you. Honestly, I will never ever forget the kindness you showed us. Ever!
        As for asking. You know, I probably could and I also realize my friend and sister-in-law who offered (not the one related to my mother-in-law, other side of the family) probably took my comment at face value. I get that, and I understand that. And, I guess I’m afraid if I do ask now they’ll just say no. I guess I’m insecure over it all, and I’d rather live in my world of insecurity then actually put myself out there to find out that they wont. Does that make sense?

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      • Your sis-in-law sounds like she was genuinely excited for you. I bet if you said to her “you know what, I really really really want to have a shower and celebrate Baby MPB now, would you please help me?” that she would not turn you down. I would put money on it. xxx

        Liked by 2 people

      • I am liking this thread so I am joining it. I think Em has a really good idea here and I really like her wording of it too “I really really really want to have a shower and celebrate Baby MPB now, would you please help me?” I think that is awesome.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Reading this makes my heartbreak. I would surely hope as well that friends or family not throwing you a baby shower has nothing to do with Baby MPB being adopted. It sucks that a lot of people seem two sided. They support you when it benefits them the most. I know for my daughter that I doubt a baby shower would have happened if I didn’t do it myself, with some help from my mom. I had friends gushing over how they wanted to do it, but when it came down to it they didn’t even help. Your blogging community is always there for you though. We love hearing the updates and supporting you in any way we can 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sorry that your friends also didn’t help! You are right, it’s interested in how people can be two sided – offer to help but when it comes down to it, they do nothing.
      And thank you so much for always being here! Honestly, I don’t know what I would do with this community! You are simply amazing!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Good golly… why are people so dumb? WHY?! One thing that stuck me (and likely has you) is that people don’t know how to act when a child is adopted into a family. So it just seems “easier” to do nothing. This isn’t an excuse for this crappy behavior, but perhaps an explanation. Perhaps I’m being generous, but I’d rather think your family is being clueless and not actually callous. Regardless, it doesn’t make it feel any better.

    I’ve long contended that friends are the family we choose– and you, lucky girl, seem to have a wonderful circle of friends. Hang your hat on that, and know how many of us are beyond happy that Baby MPB is here!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think you are right. Honestly, people don’t get adoption and I suspect it’s easier to do nothing then to risk doing the wrong thing.
      And you are also right about where to hang my hat. My friend, like you, are simply amazing! And I think it’s great that Baby MPB will grow up knowing that he is loved from all corners of the world. Thank you so much for always loving and caring! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. WTF??? I would not let this one go. This is not OK. And there are too many unknowns connected to this – well beyond the physical party – that will become unhealthy for you, will fester, will ultimately negatively affect your concept of your extended family and the various relationships therein. I am so maddened by this. I too think Mr. MPB needs to take this one on. It doesn’t matter when a shower happens, or the age of the child, or before or after arrival – whatever that looks like… if the parents are wanting to it, it should happen without differentiation in your family. Well, no, I change my mind on that one. It should ESPECIALLY happen after you guys. All children are precious gifts, but you made it through the Sahara and back for your child, and the least your family could do is wrap you in love, formally welcome baby and spoil you all – especially if they have done that for others!
    I really think this needs to be questioned. And even if Mr. MPB feels awkward about it, it’s his homework. Because in time, it will be too late, and this will be added to your repertoire of heartache and lonely thoughts late at night, when you should be marvelling in joy and initiative and celebration on the part of your family. And, on your side, could you send a text or brief email wondering about an event to recognize your first, hard-fought-for child?
    I think it’s easier to reprogram, or give the chance for reprogamming, from the start. Before Baby MPB has his wits around him and can make sense of relationships and what’s really going down in the world around him.
    YOU DESERVE THIS, AND YOUR CHILD DESERVES BEYOND EXTRA EFFORT TO BE WELCOMED AND EMBRACED INTO YOUR LIFE AND YOUR FAMILIES. I’m not screaming, my heart is just speaking strongly.
    What a week for craptastic families. I’m so sorry.

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  7. I agree with everyone that I want you and Baby MPB to be able to feel so loved and cherished – especially after the journey it has been for you all! I think people don’t know what to do so often, so they don’t do anything. Note, I don’t agree at all with that! I truly hope that is what it is as I cannot fathom them being so silly as to treat an adopted child differently. Maybe it all happened so fast that they didn’t know what to do, but you could casually mention that, now that you know he is yours, you’d love to celebrate with everyone. Do you think that could help them get the hint? I am sorry. Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. We had a Sip & See… a baby shower after the baby is born to more or less “show of the baby”… attention is meant to be more on the baby then the mom/parents, people bring gifts, sip, and see 🙂 it was fun and relaxing. Meant to be thrown by the parents. Just a thought. I didn’t get a single thing before she was born from anyone because I didn’t want to jinx it.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I’m wondering if there are any grudges held because you didn’t attend the other family baby shower or go to meet that baby? I think I recall you saying they were upset about that, and I sort of worried that their resentment might come back when it was your turn. I don’t know what the feelings are about this from people who are struggling to get pregnant or have suffered losses, but I can understand why someone would be upset that you didn’t celebrate her baby, and perhaps not want to participate in your celebration.

    My best friend struggled for three years to get pregnant before succeeding with IVF (but that was after my own pregnancy). She showed up for me and celebrated with me, and that only made me want to show up for her in a big way to celebrate her hard won pregnancy. I don’t know if I would have held a grudge if she hadn’t supported me, but it’s a possibility? I would have tried to understand but it would have hurt me, I think. Just throwing that out there. I hope someone gets on it and gives baby MPB the celebration he deserves!

    Liked by 2 people

    • This is an excellent point. And valid. I know I upset my sister when she was pregnant with her second and I basically ignored that fact as we struggled through IVF. One of my greatest regrets. She told me it was the saddest time in her life. 😢 God love her, she forgave me and kept cheering me on.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t think I was very clear in my post. The sister in law who offered is not the same sister-in-law whose baby shower I didn’t attend. Ops! They are on opposite sides of the family (mine vs. Mr. MPBs).
        Anyways, it’s not the sister-in-law whose baby shower I missed who I’m disappointed in. I would never expect her to be involved in that way – we live in different parts of the country and we aren’t overly close in fact she actually missed our wedding (which I am not upset about as she had a very valid reason). It’s my mother-in-law. That said, I think you make a very fair point. I didn’t attend the shower and my mother-in-law may very well be holding a grudge about that because she’s done similar things in the past with us. And, she also may just be completely oblivious to how upset I am. We have a very fractured relationship and I don’t share my emotions with her well (or at all), and she’s not psychic.
        Also, I think you make another really good point. I NEED to do better. I lived in my own world of hurt for so long that I avoided basically everything baby. Our good friends understood and supported us. But now, now I have to do better. I owe it to my friends to be a better friend. And thank you for reminding me of this as you both shared your experiences with supporting your friends through their experiences.

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  10. This sucks. It really does. I’m not surprised either, frankly, since we have similar families.

    Don’t think too much about your friend and sister in law – because you DID say not to worry about it. In my family, they know that means I want it dropped. I said that to my mom about one of the bridal showers her friends wanted to throw and they honored that single statement. People can only do what they can with what you tell them, and I bet they thought that was your nice way of saying, “no thanks, that’s not my thing.”. WITH THAT SAID, your MIL should be doing something in some capacity of she did fit your SIL. But, and this is a big but, did she organize the entire shower for your SIL? Meaning was it HER idea or did she offer to help someone else who wanted to throw the shower? Our parents generation grew up in an era where family absolutely DID NOT host showers. I, in fact, share in this thought because it was my moms and her friends ways of thinking. If she’s a traditionalist, and doesn’t know your friends well, then I wouldn’t expect her to offer a shower unless it was a family only shower.
    In my opinion, none of it has to do with Baby MPB being adopted.

    I had two baby showers, 3 bridal showers, and none of them involved my mom or sisters AT ALL. They were special guests of my showers.

    I’m not trying to be a hard ass, but I am offering a realistic viewpoint given the ages of your step mom and MIL. This is an instance where if it were me, I’d look back later and say, “I shouldn’t have taken that so personally.”. I do that a lot! I’m sensitive. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Okay… My two cents/pence. I don’t think that it’s anything to do with them preferring other babies to yours. (I could be wrong.) I do think it’s because he’s adopted… Not in a bad way, but because you didn’t have a pregnancy and you didn’t have a due date. So people didn’t know that he was arriving (and you didn’t exactly, either) so it didn’t fit in with the typical timelines of having a baby, because a baby shower usually happens in the last few weeks of pregnancy before the due date.

    I do understand why you’re upset, and you have a right to be. As an adoptive mum you’ve already missed out on pregnancy and the birth experience so it’s hard to think you also miss the baby shower. However: I don’t think you should take it as a reflection on your son – it’s not. It’s just a reflection on the fact that you’ve done things a bit differently to “normal” and people aren’t used to that.

    Also I feel like you may have inadvertently discouraged people from doing it… I feel like you can’t expect people to know that you want one. You’ve been very clear on the shoulds and should nots re your baby, which is absolutely your right… I think people don’t have the experience to know that you’d want a baby shower (as it’s not necessarily a baby shower but a show and tell / meet and greet baby situation).

    In the UK baby showers aren’t the norm – they’re kind of an American import so some people have them and some don’t. There is no known etiquette really so if someone wants one then they kind of have to say, unless someone has offered to do it. It’s not really a reflection on how popular they are or anything but more of a dependency on whether their friends and family like doing that sort of stuff. Much more common is the post birth meet and greet and even then it’s in different batches of visitors and not usually an event unless it’s a christening.

    Honestly I don’t want you to get unnecessarily upset about this! So you didn’t get a pre birth baby shower. You did get gifts from all over the world from your blogfriends – that’s like a virtual baby shower! And if you want a baby meet and greet then why not ask someone you trust if they’d be willing to organise it? Just be honest about your feelings and say “I am sad I didn’t get to have a baby shower before we got baby MPB. I would love it if you would be willing to organise one for him now he’s here.” If they then say no then you’re within your rights to feel miffed, but if you don’t make your feelings crystal clear then they’re not mind readers!

    PS I would totally do one for you if I was nearby! Sending you love as always xx

    Liked by 3 people

  12. I meant to say I agree with Courtney – “Don’t worry about it” means don’t bother, in my way of understanding. “Yes please, I was hoping you would ask; I would really love one!” is the response I would have expected if you did want one (which you do!) along with suggested dates when you’re available!

    I can’t help feeling that you are being a tad overprotective on Baby MPB’s behalf because you are sensitive about him being adopted. Being adopted is just a fact of Baby MPB and you don’t have to defend him against it. It’s absolutely your job to fight his corner as any parent would, but try not to see his adoption as a reason for every slight… In many cases it probably isn’t. People are ignorant about adoption (in the sense that they don’t know rather than being deliberately obtuse) and I’ve found in most cases they’re interested, rather than critical. I honestly feel like they’re just being dumb / unknowing rather than purposefully mean, and I would rather think that about people rather than assume the worst unless they give me cause to (in which case… unleash the hounds!). Xx

    Liked by 3 people

  13. I’m sorry that your family hasn’t done anything to celebrate baby MPB’s life with/for you. I will say that at least with your SIL, if you had told her not to bother, maybe she’s just doing what you asked her to do (or not do).
    I will also say this…B and I are fully planning on throwing our own shower for ourselves. We have NO family near us at all, so there’s not really any way for them to throw us a shower without a number of people traveling to get there. B has some close friends nearby, but I don’t at all. My work may do something for me, but I’m not counting on it…especially if I end up quitting before she’s born. So we decided if we want a shower, we better do our own. We will invite all family, friends, and coworkers, and hopefully we’ll have a good turnout! It will also give people who can’t travel at least a chance to send a gift if they want to. Once it gets a bit warmer, maybe something you may want to do as well?

    Liked by 2 people

  14. So many great comments here! I adore the sip & see idea too! I might steal it!

    I have to admit, I was a tad confused when I finished your post because it honestly sounds like you gently turned down two baby showers, and not that no one wants to shower your baby. Maybe it would be worth it to go back to either one and say, “I’m ready now, if your offer to shower baby MPB still stands.” I know when my best friend adopts I am going to be soooo eager to throw her shower (especially since she has been generous for so many years with all her friends’ endless showers!), but if she ever suggested she wasn’t enthusiastic for it in any way, I would probably hold off until I got the all clear from her.

    I wouldn’t be surprised if many (though perhaps not all) people are trying very hard to be considerate of your feelings & wants in this time, they just aren’t always sure what to do, or say, or offer.

    That being said, you are a wonderful, protective mama bear, he’s a lucky boy!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. It hurts my heart how welco
    Ing a child via adoption is perceived so differently. You deserve a baby shower if it feels important to you. I’m sorry your family has treated you and your sister in law so differently. It seems the joys of infertility continue to be impactful after your son was placed. Part of me wishes that feeling of being left out finally goes away but that doesn’t seem to be the case.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I’m so sorry your family just don’t get it, it really breaks my heart, and I truly don’t understand 😦

    I really wish I could throw you a baby shower!!! I am so hoping your friend is just waiting for the right time to ask you if you want to do a baby shower!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  17. I am truly saddened at the behavior of both your families. I would suggest that you and hubby instead, plan a welcome to the world party for your son that you guys plan and throw. It could be a bbq, Cocktail party, or afternoon tea. Enlist the help of close friends and invite everyone to come. My sister and her husband did this for the birth of their son and it was really nice. They registered a registry at a few stores and it was delightful.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. I’m sorry that neither of your families and has celebrated Baby MPB the way he deserves to be celebrated! That just gets my goat that they haven’t come through for you. 😦 Sending you lots of love and hugs and I’m sorry I’m reading this posts so long after you post them!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Dealing with family is one of two things…it is the most amazing thing ever, or it’s the worst thing ever! Callie and I have really learned to separate our FEELINGS for them from our EXPECTATIONS of them. We love them so much, and we care about them and support them the best way we can, and that is one thing, but we don’t ever expect much from anyone because we’ll be disappointed when those expectations arent met. Also, when it comes to disappointing our kids, you definitely end up on our shitlist!

    I’m so sorry that baby MPB isn’t being celebrated in the way that he should, at least not by your families, but kmow that all of your internet buddies love this baby so much, and love the family that you have created. I’m certain I’m not only speaking for myself when I say that he is celebrated. His birth mom is celebrated, and we rejoice for you and Mr. MPB and the beautiful family that you have created….

    Liked by 1 person

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