5 Ways to Ruin a Baby Shower

Women at Baby Shower
Photo © Cultura/yellowdog/Getty Images

Baby showers are meant to be a highlight of pregnancy. It is a party that celebrates your new baby and your pregnancy. You gather with friends and family, eat good food, play a few goofy games and ooh and ahh over baby presents.

The problem is that this is not always the case. Baby showers have almost become a competitive sport. From huge showers to multiple showers, the fever pitch of finding entertainment – I’m waiting for someone to have a cake where some male dancers jump out.

Seriously, it’s getting out of hand. So here are my five ways that you can quickly ruin a baby shower:

1. Invite too Many People

Seriously, it is quite easy for the guest list to get out of hand. If you have to consider moving the baby shower from your home to a venue – you might have too many people coming. The ideal guest list will be comprised of friends and family who know the mom-to-be very well. This is not the time to invite your childhood neighbor that you haven’t seen since you were six. If the person doesn’t know a few embarrassing facts about the guest of honor, it’s probably a good indication that they don’t know her well enough to come to the baby shower.

2. Make Fun of Mom

This seems like a no-brainer. You would assume that a baby shower is about building mom up rather than tearing her down. There can be some sensitive topics or thoughts that are brought out at a baby shower, typically through baby shower games.

So choose wisely which games you use at the shower. One mom might think it’s a hoot to have everyone guess how big she is by the amount of toilet paper a guest chooses, while another just wants to cry. Know your honoree well enough to know what would be hurtful to her. When in doubt – ask!

3. Fuel Family Feuds

I am not going to pretend to tell you that you can avoid all conflict at baby showers.

Nor will I recommend that you completely avoid inviting certain parties, we all have people like this in our families. What I will tell you is to minimize the feuding - be selective in your baby shower guest list. This might mean that you have assigned seats or that you employ a dear friend to entertain one party away from another. You might even consider a proactive approach and talk to the potential dueling partners before the big day. Remind them that the event is not about them but about mom and baby. Simply state if they can’t respect that, perhaps they should consider sending in their regrets.

4. Serve Alcohol

Seriously, I’ve seen it. Baby showers and alcohol don’t mix. First of all, why would you serve anything that the pregnant woman at the center of the party can’t have? Secondly, we all know how well alcohol does at lubricating conversation and confrontation. It’s simply not worth it. And I’m not just talking Jell-o shots as a bad idea, I’m also talking upscale mimosas. Just don’t do it. Plenty of fun and friendly baby shower punches to serve.

5. Don’t Ditch the Drama

Depending on how your family and friends behave, the drama might be a topic of conversation (Don’t play political baby name games or pin the episiotomy on the perineum.), or the drama might be a person (Again, we all have a family member that meets this description.).

Try to keep everything pretty calm and quiet. Choose baby shower games that won’t spark feuds, don’t give anyone a reason to get on their high horse on any topic. And as for the family Drama Queen – well, if you can’t get away with not inviting her, perhaps you can just schedule the shower during her vacation. (Or something like that…) Consider employing a friend of the mom-to-be to act as baby shower bouncer. She can troll for trouble makers and keep everyone quiet.