There are a lot of unspoken etiquette rules when it comes to having a baby that makes it hard for any soon-to-be mom to keep up.
In the age of over the top gender reveals and pregnancy photoshoots that look like they belong on the cover of Vogue, it’s up to us to decide which of these rules we want to keep and which we want to toss.
In the midst of it all is one ever pressing question.
Do we allow men to attend our baby shower or not?
Baby Shower Etiquette Guide: What The Tradition Says?
Tradition says that a baby shower is for the women closest to the mom to get together and shower the unborn bundle of joy with monogrammed onesies and expensive gadgets that will never be used.
This is seen as a great time for the father of the child to get out of the house and maybe get a few drinks with the husbands of the women at the shower.
This is the norm that has been accepted for decades, but does it make sense in 2020?
A not so long time ago, men were seen as the sole breadwinners while women were homemakers. All household chores, including raising children, were seen as “women’s work”.
In that day and age, it made sense for men not to attend baby showers because they weren’t really involved with the baby anyways.
Things are different now but the way we plan these events remains the same.
Baby showers are traditionally girly events, complete with finger sandwiches and frilly Pinterest games. A man wouldn’t WANT to attend something like that…right?
Does he really not want to though or have we just assumed he doesn’t because of the way we were brought up?
Today, there are men who stay at home full time with their children. While the woman is the one financing their household by working.
There are households in which both the man and woman work, dividing all financial and homemaking responsibilities evenly.
There are even households where there isn’t a woman because there are two dads, or where there isn’t a dad because there are two moms.
We live in an ever-changing society where gender roles and norms are constantly evolving.
Our dads and grandfathers may have wanted to go out to the bar instead of attending a baby shower, but should we assume that our husbands feel the same way just because that is the traditional way of doing things?
Do Men Go to Baby Showers? What Does Co-Ed Baby Shower Feel Like?
I have been to baby showers where men were invited and though at first, it felt a bit taboo, I quickly relaxed and realized that it makes sense for a lot of people.
That is your life partner, and you are journeying into the world of parenthood as a unit. Why should your baby shower be something that you aren’t together for?
Looking at it from another point of view, do we really want to tell our girlfriends that they have to leave their men at home? Your husband likes Sarah’s husband, so why don’t we make it one big party?
To be a parent is to be okay with constant change. Your body changes, your mood changes, the way your house looks changes. We are thrown into a sea of change daily and somehow; we learn how to roll with the punches and get things done regardless.
If we can do that, why can’t we scrap an old-fashioned tradition and change the way society sees baby showers?
Invite your friends and their husbands. Tell your husband to invite his friends and their wives.
Grab a pizza and some ribs to put beside the finger sandwiches so that your husband doesn’t stack 10 onto his plate and complain that he’s still hungry later.
Play games, open gifts, have a great time, and enjoy this milestone in your life.
Make your baby shower an event for you and your husband to celebrate this new life with your closest friends and family.
Or don’t. Leave the tradition exactly how it is and tell your guy to keep himself busy for a few hours.
As with anything, every relationship and partnership has its own dynamic. You and your person are the only ones who truly understand how you function best.
If you want your own day with your girls to celebrate and enjoy each other’s company, do it! I am not going to sit here and tell you that you are wrong.
Is Inviting Men To Baby Shower Against Tradition?
If you are a traditional girl, be traditional. Do what makes you comfortable and what makes you happy. There is no reason for you to feel like you have to bend your beliefs just because it is trendy.
BUT don’t feel like this is the only option just because you half-jokingly brought up inviting your husband and your mom gasped and gave you an entire proper etiquette lecture.
You are creating life.
Whether that life is growing inside you or it is already out in the world, waiting to be adopted and brought into your family. You are starting or continuing a family and that truly takes guts.
So, use those guts to do what works best for you. Forget about what other people have to say about it.
If what you want isn’t what is traditionally considered acceptable, throw tradition out the window, and kiss it goodbye.
At the end of the day, a baby shower is about your baby.
It is a celebration of life and a time for the people around you to pitch in and help out with things you need to get ready for the biggest adventure you will ever go on.
Figure out what is going to be best for your little family and go with that. What works for one doesn’t work for all and the sooner that is realized, the easier parenthood will be for you.
Do men go to baby showers? Traditionally, no.
Can they attend yours? That is entirely up to you.
All anyone cares about is whether there are snacks or not, anyways.
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