Is it ok for the step-mom to throw a separate bridal shower for her husband’s & her family?

May 16th, 2011

My oldest step-daughter is getting married & her sister is the maid of honor. However, her sister is pregnant & single with very little time or money. I was told that their mother was going to throw a shower for her side of the family only. That was fine because it would have been awkward since she doesn’t like me or my husband’s family at all. Mind you, I met my husband after she left him and all five kids for someone else. We have been married for five years and all of the kids have lived with us most of that time. I asked her sister (MOH) if she would like to help me with the shower or had any thoughts and she didn’t say anything except “I think Mom is having a shower too.” The next day I got a nasty phone call from the mom telling me I broke etiquette & was wrong to plan a shower & leave the MOH out of it. I really was only trying to help, keep things less awkward & make my step-daughters happy. I have only set the date & was waiting for input from the MOH but now I don’t know what to do. The shower was going to be for my husband’s family & mine (whom my step-daughter is close too as well). Maybe I messed up but I don’t think I deserved to be yelled at & mailed bridesmaids etiquette papers from the Mom. My stepdaughter insisted I go with her, the bridesmaids, MIL, & mom to wedding dress shop a few months ago. I hesitated but didn’t want to hurt her feelings. Her mom was very rude to me including nasty comments if I said anything about any of the dresses. My stepdaughter even phoned me after & apologized for her behavior. I hadn’t said anything to anyone..she noticed and felt embarrassed by her mom. I want my step daughter to have a great shower & wedding but I’m getting really nervous that she will be nasty no matter what I do. Help!

4 Responses to “Is it ok for the step-mom to throw a separate bridal shower for her husband’s & her family?”

  1. Anna B says:

    you did nothing wrong i think the mom is being very immature and is still holding on to old feelings i feel as long as the bride not the MOH is ok with a shower go ahead because persoanally if the MOH is siding with her mom and doesnt want to attend as long as the bride is there it will be an amazing party

  2. Messykatt says:

    Umm…Mom needs the etiquette update more than you do. Mothers and sisters are not supposed to throw bridal showers (unless it is family ONLY). It’s been this way forever. They can certainly help, but bridal showers are generally offered by friends. If the MOH is a sister, she’s responsible for doing her part, but she should not be the hostess. There’s a gray area with stepmoms, stepsiblings, future MIL’s, etc.

    It’s obvious your stepdaughter is not stupid, so just ride it out. She’s caught in the middle here, but she clearly sees her mom is overstepping boundaries. (By the way, that’s one of the reasons moms and sisters aren’t supposed to be the hostess of bridal showers).

    If your event is totally separate and is restricted to your family, you don’t need anyone’s permission to throw it (except the bride, of course). Co workers often throw separate showers without going through the MOH or Momzilla.

  3. SugarCat says:

    Actually, BOTH of you “broke etiquette” if you want to get really technical about it. Family members are NOT supposed to throw showers for each other. It looks really gift grabby.

    However, more and more people are ignoring that rule. If you want to be one of them, then ignore that witch of a ex.

  4. Arctic Spirit says:

    Since this is the mother of the bride you’re talking about. I would say her stress level is up since this is the first time she is a mother of the bride. Her sister is pregnant and this is only added stress for the grandmother to be.

    I would back up a bit to give that side of the family breathing space so they can relax over this busy time in this young woman’s life. Weddings, births, and deaths are big events and should be handled by the relatives that are closely involved. If they invite you for your support then by all means, jump right on in.

    These are unusual times in this family, with a wedding, and sister’s birth coming up, so I think maybe have a post bridal-shower/baby-shower combination for the 2 of them… You can make this as big, or as small of an occasion as you wish. Planning this after the wedding would be lovely.

    Cheers and Good Luck

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