– Ask Cheryl – Not Invited to Baby Shower, but Can I still Send a Gift?

While some dread gift-giving obligations, others enjoy expressing their love and support by giving a gift. But if they haven’t received an invitation, would their gifts be appreciated or misunderstood?

Dear Cheryl,

Is it considered rude to send a gift to a baby shower that I am not invited to? My future daughter-in-law’s sister-in-law is having a shower and I would like to send something, but I do not want them to feel bad not inviting me. I did not expect to be invited, but I have met her several times and I would like to send a small gift.

Thank you,


Hi Stephanie,

Some of us are just born gift-givers. That’s how we express our happiness and well wishes. While “rude” is not the word I would use, you’ve identified that sending a gift to the baby shower might make the mother-to-be’s family feel bad for not inviting you. Since it could cause that reaction, you should probably refrain. It could be awkward.

Baby showers are often kept small and intimate for the closest friends and family members. Even those invited who are not able to attend do not need to send a gift to the shower.

This isn’t your only opportunity to send a gift! I recommend simply waiting until the baby is born and then sending a small gift to the new parents.

In the end, etiquette boils down to being considerate of others and making those you interact with feel comfortable. Waiting until the shower has passed to send a gift will avoid any potential misunderstandings and ensure that your future daughter-in-law and her family feel comfortable.

If you have questions or comments about this post, gift giving, bridal showers, baby showers, or wedding etiquette, please comment below or email [email protected].

Questions in this column are received from readers. They may be edited for spelling, length, and grammar or to remove sensitive information. However, we are careful not to alter the intent or content of the question.

2 thoughts on “Ask Cheryl: Not Invited to Baby Shower, but Can I still Send a Gift?

  1. I need an answer. My son and daughter got married by a justice of the peace. I wasn’t invited. Then they moved from ny to Colorado. They are expecting my first grandson. Myself and my 2 daughters weren’t invited to the baby shower. I’m upset

  2. Hi Nancy,
    My heart goes out to you, and I understand you are upset and hurt. If the baby shower was held in Colorado, it’s common not to invite out-of-town guests, so that may have been the reason.

    Are they coming to visit any time soon? If so, you, your daughters, or another relative could hold a baby shower for them while they are in town. If not, you can send a baby gift or gifts to them anytime, before or after the baby is born. The important thing is to keep the relationship positive so you can enjoy your grandson.
    All the best,

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