Ever receive a baby shower invitation? Few things strike fear in the heart of a woman living with infertility than this. A baby shower invitation, seemingly an innocent piece of paper, is inviting you to spend two hours or more with a group of people doing nothing but talk about babies and parenting. It probably sounds like a gut wrenching nightmare.
So, what do you do? First you need to consider:
- Who sent it?
- Who is the baby shower for?
- Who will be attending?
- Are you expected to be there? If so, by whom?
- What is the fall out if you aren't there?
- Does it even fit in your schedule?
- Can you handle it emotionally?
With these answers in mind, mull it over for a brief while. Do not stew about it, but do consider it. Here are the possible choices:
- Suck it up and go for the whole baby shower.
Sometimes there are some things that we simply need to attend. That might be for us, for our family or for our friends. If you feel like this instance falls into this category, you'll have to do your best. Consider talking to the host or recipient and explaining how you're feeling if you can. You can also try to find someone else who is perhaps a baby shower buddy. Even if they don't know the mom-to-be simply ask the hostess to bring a guest. Having someone's ear to bend can be quite helpful.
- Make a brief appearance.
You can also RSVP that you will attend and then show up only for a brief appearance. It's easier to show up late than it is to leave early, because sometimes you get trapped and can't leave. Consider avoiding baby shower games and baby gifts if possible.
Send your regrets and a gift.
If you can't do it or don't want to do it, simply say no. Know that you are taking care of yourself and that is perfectly wonderful. No explanation is needed, though if you want to say something you can.
In the end, you have to do what works for you. If the day of the party comes and you simply can't make it, try alerting the hostess. If you're not up for a big explanation, try to get voice mail or send a text message to her. A baby shower isn't worth your sanity.