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Carolyn Hax: New mother wants co-ed shower despite her mother’s appeal

DEAR CAROLYN: My husband and I are expecting our first child. My mother insists on hosting a baby shower (despite my discomfort at having a family member host). I told mom that I wanted it to be co-ed – I don’t see why men should be excluded from the celebration of new life.

My mom and dad are appalled, have gone behind my back to get my husband to lobby me (he refuses), and now are just proceeding as if I never even mentioned this.

I have trouble picking battles, in that I tend to pick all battles. Is this one to insist upon, or should I just go with the flow? I may be bringing some baggage from our wedding (which they similarly steamrolled).

Gender Battler

DEAR BATTLER: “Mom, Dad: Men come or I don’t.” You’re the guest of honor and you’re fine with no shower at all, right? So you can skip fighting and jump straight to victory. Recognize when you’re the boss, then be the boss.

Read on:

DEAR CAROLYN: “Battler’s” mom might just go ahead and plan the single-sex shower. Then when the guest of honor doesn’t show up, the majority will think she was being a drama queen about the co-ed shower and won’t help with the new baby. To be clear, I’m with the letter-writer. I’ve just upset a lot of my extended family by insisting on being “difficult.”


DEAR ANONYMOUS: The couple can follow up with the men on their guest list to be sure they’ve been included – or just call off the shower pre-emptively, though particularly stubborn parents might then organize a surprise shower.

Isn’t it nuts to be parsing various power moves over, essentially, buying a couple some onesies?

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