Dear Savvy Auntie,

A family friend of mine is having a baby shower, and I'm very conflicted. She already has a child, a 6 year old son. The new baby is also a boy.

I come from a very traditional background, and have always been told it is in bad taste to have a baby shower unless it's the first baby (or the first baby of that gender). I've also always been tough that showers should be hosted by a non-family member. Hers is being hosted by her sister.

I know there's the trend of doing a smaller baby shower (a "sprinkle"). But hers is an all out baby shower with a HUGE registry... and MANY expensive items... the cheapest thing on the registry is $50. Some of the items aren't even for the baby... unless newborns need 55" flat screen televisions straight out of the womb. Last I heard, she's invited 100+ people, so this seems like a huge shower and not a sprinkle.

I feel like she's either (a) not aware at the social faux pas, or (b) being greedy.

I haven't RSVP'd yet, because I feel conflicted. I want to support her and her growing family, but I can't get past all of the improper etiquette.

Any advice would be welcome.

Over-showered Auntie

Dear Over-showered Auntie,

It sounds as if you and your pregnant friend live in very different cultures. You are correct coming from your background, however, she may be observing the mores of her life style... or her husband's family. It sounds as if the "trappings" are very crucial to you, and you are judging her as too materialistic. Perhaps, this pregnancy has particular meaning to her and her husband.

I suggest you set aside your criticism and celebrate in any way that you see fit. Be supportive of her in your own manner and share her happiness. However, if you stray too far from her guidelines you may be stretching your bond of friendship. Are you comfortable with that result? What seems certain is that she is not going to abide by your etiquette.

I have sympathetic feelings for the older brother being somewhat left out of the you?

I hope this is helpful,

Natalie Robinson Garfield

Homepage Photo: Yastremska
Published: January 19, 2017

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