When a happy couple can declare that a new baby is on the way, it’s usually not just the parents who are getting excited. The future grandparents, aunts, uncles friends and any other loved ones will be looking forward to welcoming the newest member of the family. This baby shower is one of the most traditional ways for friends, family and loved ones to come together to celebrate the pregnancy. It’s a time for people to gather and ‘shower’ the happy couple with presents, love and good wishes before the birth of the baby.

However, in recent years this tradition seems to have died off a little bit. A combination of changes in social and cultural etiquette surrounding the birth of a new baby seems to have drawn people away from the idea of hosting these events.

In this guide, we are going to be discussing how baby showers have come about, and whether or not they are a truly ‘outdated’ idea.

 

What exactly is a baby shower?

A baby shower is essentially, like said before, a party to celebrate the expected birth of a new baby. It’s also a way in which friends and family can help new parents with whatever resources and gifts they may need because after all, having a baby can be expensive.

 

So, where did baby showers come from?

Baby showers as we know them are a relatively recent invention. The birth of babies has been celebrated for thousands of years. Still, the celebrations that took place throughout history are very, very different from the kind that we are so familiar with today.

The Ancient Greek and Egyptians held ceremonies to celebrate new babies and their mothers, during these ceremonies and rituals, gifts and good wishes were offered to the gods. During the Middle Ages, however, the ritual began to change, and new babies were celebrated in their baptism, which was an excellent opportunity to give gifts to new parents.

During the Renaissance years, mothers were given gifts and wishes of goodwill upon the birth of their baby. It was only during the Victorian years when the baby shower that we know today began to take shape. Back in those years, childbirth and pregnancy were not discussed publicly, so these celebrations took place after the birth of the baby.

The baby showers that we recognize today truly began to form after the world wars. It was an opportunity for people to offer support and resources for expecting mothers after the economic hardship of both world wars.

 

Are they outdated?

Given the fact that these traditions date so far back into our history, many people think it is absurd that we should get rid of these baby shower rituals. On the other hand, others argue that the motives for having these ceremonies and gatherings were different when they were first invented. Back then, the reasons were mostly to offer genuine economic support, but nowadays for the majority of families in the western world, that kind of support isn’t essential. Sure, raising a child can be expensive, but that doesn’t mean we have to gather around all of our friends and family to bring over 100 different pairs of baby shoes!

Of course, becoming a parent is a significant milestone in people’s lives, and it is undoubtedly worth huge celebrations, but that doesn’t quite call for forcing each other to spend hours oohing and aahing over the same stuff each time, does it? It’s a ritual that can be spectacularly boring for people who didn’t have kids. In all honesty, there may be better ways for us to celebrate each other’s pregnancies, one that is a lot more fun for everybody involved.

 

How you can make baby showers more ‘modern.’

 

  1. Get the timing right

There are several ways in which you can make your baby shower more modern. The first if which is to get the timing right. Instead of hosting as soon as you announce you are expecting, you may wish to wait until the baby is born and organise a ‘welcome baby’ party. Of course, it is your decision whatever you decide to do, but this kind of celebration could be combined with a christening,

 

 

  1. Check over your guest list

To make sure that the experience is enjoyable for plenty of people, you should keep an eye on who you invite. The best choice is to go for immediate family and tight-knit friends. To make sure that everyone there can have a good time, it’s best only to invite those who are genuinely close to you, so everyone can enjoy it rather than feel obliged to attend.

On top of that, having one joint shower is becoming more and more common. If you know other people who are celebrating a pregnancy, there is no reason why you couldn’t have one celebration together, but if you don’t want guests to feel obliged to bring gifts to everyone, then just make that clear to them.

 

  1. Know when it opens the presents

People love to see small stuffed animals and tiny clothes, but the long opening of the all can get rather tedious, and guests who didn’t quite bring as large gifts may begin to feel embarrassed. You and your hosts should decide what feels best, but things do often work out best if the contributions are opened later. On top of that, even if your guest insists that one isn’t needed, you should send a thank-you note along, you have up to the baby’s two month birthday to address one without being late, according to baby shower etiquette.

 

  1. Get crafty with something different altogether.

Another popular option is the mani-pedi style party. All you have to do is block out a few hours at your favorite salon and get some besties to go with you. It’s a fun afternoon that you know everyone can enjoy, and a great way to celebrate an impending pregnancy.

 

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