Who else thinks "sexy" wedding shower games are strange?

Updated May 11 2016
Guest post by swanqueen
Enjoy these Ass grabbing panties. Love, YOUR MOTHER-IN-LAW
Enjoy these Ass grabbing panties. Love, YOUR MOTHER-IN-LAW
I'm fortunate, in many respects. As a second-time bride, I'm not expecting a wedding shower. As a consequence, I am spared the bizarre rounds of public humiliation that pass on Pinterest as "shower games."

Has anyone else noticed these games? And the number of them that circle around "naughty" ideas? Bring underwear that represents your personality, and make the bride guess whose knickers are whose… Play sexy truth or dare… Decorate undies for the bride with a message/instructions to her partner-to-be… Write down everything the bride says while opening gifts and recite it at the end as her "wedding night" commentary… Make undies with handprints on them so the bride knows where to get "handsy" with her partner… Have a sex toy-themed "honeymoon scavenger hunt," etc…

I understand that some of these come from our socio-cultural anxiety surrounding the traditional fact that a wedding is when a virginal girl becomes a sexually experienced woman. There are a host of traditions around the world that deal with this. Bedding ceremonies, charivari processions to accompany the newlyweds to the bedroom, all kinds of fertility rituals. These all deal with our social discomfort with the transitory phase of life a young bride is going through, and are often meant to decrease the anxiety or pressure surrounding a young couple who might be feeling a little less than up to the task of getting down to business. That's all part and parcel of the wedding ceremony itself, after all, in a ritual theory context.

That's likely where you get "lingerie showers," where experienced women give the bride underthings and nightgowns and such, to hold her in good stead as a married woman, and give her advice about her marital duties. (Unsurprisingly, these are apparently very popular in certain Evangelical subsets where female virginity is prized, especially in the ones that reserve first kisses for the altar. My partner's family is of this stripe of Evangelical Christian, and I have been invited to some.)

But the "naughty party games" feel like a different thing… as if they're designed to be specifically humiliating.

I don't know if that's the case, or if that's my social anxiety talking. But I can think of nothing less funny than having my aunties and mother make sexy underwear for for my future husband, so I know where to put my hands when we get down to the business. I mean, honestly. It feels awful, as if the purpose is to put the bride's sexuality on display in order to mock it.

Maybe I just have the wrong kind of friends. Maybe I am sexually repressed and don't want to talk about my bedroom antics with friends and relations who have known me since I was tiny and didn't know how to wear lipstick. Maybe I'm an anxious introvert who is no fun at parties (probably true).

Does anyone actually think these are a good idea? And I mean specifically for a wedding shower, where people are ostensibly giving you appliances and shit like that — not a bachelorette party, which is more likely to be just friends of the bride. Do people think having a sexy scavenger hunt where grandma looks for dildos and lube is a great idea, and I'm just a prude? Or do other folks feel an unpleasant tone, too?

  1. Hi there! I think it's kind of weird. I love ALL my girlfriends, and all of my family women, but, I don't want sexual advice or to guess what they wear for their partners in the bedroom. While I am not offended by sexuality, I think that kind of thing should be reserved for a private conversation. Even if your private conversation includes 3 or 4 of your best friends, I don't want to see the sexy that they put on for their partner because it should be reserved for their partner, ya know? So, I agree…and I've already even nixed the stripper thing because male strippers kind of weird me out. lol

  2. Having never been to one of these myself, just hearing about this makes my skin crawl. This sounds VERY awkward and humiliating to me.

    • Thank God that someone else see this as a crazy thing to do.
      I was recently invited to a shower with this 'game.' It's so embarrassingly stupid. I will pass.

  3. I think you have to know your audience. I definitely would not appreciate these kinds of games at a shower in my honor and my poor mother would be absolutely horrified. Perhaps if you have bride who is super open about sex stuff and her family and friends are the same way, then maybe it would be ok.

    I didn't have a shower, but at my bachelorette party (tea at the Plaza Hotel) we played a sort of guessing game that I thought was cute and fun. My maid of honor had emailed hubs with a list of questions about us (how did we meet, favorite colors, who's the boss, etc.). At the tea the ladies took turns reading me the questions, then I had to answer and then they would tell me what he had answered. I got most of the answers right! I thought it was a fun way to have a game that was about us, and put me on the spot a little bit, without being super embarrassing for me or my guests.

  4. How I imagine this going:

    FH "I like that [insert thing received at lingerie shower]."
    Me "Thanks! Your mom gave it to me"

    That right there is what I call a mood killer.

  5. How funny, I also grew up in an Evangelical environment (Baptist). As someone whose gone to numerous bridal showers, I alwasy found it amusing and actually funny when I saw women who are normally conservative and also prudish, let loose and open up.

    My family tends to have a wild sense of humor so for me, seeing my grandmother play some wild bridal shower games was both funny and made me cringe. I dont think any of the games or favors are meant to humiliate the bride, I think its just an excuse for those women who have been married to have fun with the bride. I've never been to a shower where the guests and family purposefully made the bride feel humiliated. I see it like a rite of passage so to speak. I think if sexual humor isnt something you've grown up use to, then it could make one anxious.

    Not all showers have to be wild, whatever fits your comfot level I suppose.

  6. No you definitely aren't weird! I banned all of that stuff from my shower and luckily my MOH rocks. I'm okay with it for a bachelorette but I can not imagine talking about sex in front of my mother or worse, his mother! I'm not at all a prude but it is just not appropriate in my opinion. I've seen it work (it did for a friend's shower) but I just can't stand that kind of stuff and I also resent the implication that I don't already know what to do at 34 years old! ๐Ÿ˜›

  7. I'm in the UK and I don't really get the difference between a shower and a bachelorette party. I had my hen party this weekend (which I think is the same as the bachelorette?) and there was drinking, dancing, and yes some games and lewdness… The purpose of these was definitely entirely to humiliate me but only in a fun way! They gave me silly presents, but it's not like the 'sexy' underwear they gave me is something that they actually think is sexy, they just wanted to make me wear it over my jeans and look like an idiot for a while. I didn't have any family there, only friends, but plenty of people do invite family.

    Would people have something like that and a shower as well? What's the point of a shower – do you get actual serious presents? Do men do something equivalent?

    • In my personal experience the Shower tends to be more family and home oriented, generally gifts for the home and couple are "showered" on the bride and it's all very sweet and innocent. Ive seen gifts of lingerie, but it's usually very 40s movie peignoir type stuff.

      The guys don't really get an equivalent party. I've seen "Jack and Jill" showers but those are generally awkward at best.

      It's far more "brunch with great aunt Gertrude" whereas the bachelorette party is with close friends and tends more toward the "penis crowns and male strippers" angle.

      I've seen some incursion of the sexy party stuff into showers in the last few years and it always comes off *massively* weird.

    • Kate,
      In the states a bachelorette party is sort of like the bride's last hurrah as a single girl. Typically one goes out with her friends, partakes in things that commemorate the single life (dancing, drinking, or just hanging out with your girls for that matter), and that's usually where the lewd/silly fun you mentioned above comes in. In my personal experiences bachelorette parties are for friends and family members close in age (cousins, sisters). Bridal showers on the other hand are a more subdued affair intended to include a wider range of guests (mothers, aunts, grandmothers, family friends). They can be coed or ladies only and gifts are given. Many of the gifts are serious presents. One shower I attended had a Hawaiian theme because that's where the honeymoon was going to be so all the gifts were things they could use: travel gear, scuba gear, beach towels etc. In other circumstances it can be things for the new couple: appliances, bed sheets, or yes, lingerie. And though games can be played at a bridal shower, the one's I have witnessed have been less sexual in nature (making wedding dresses out of toilet paper for instance). Again, this is all just in my personal experience and I'm sure it varies for each bride and culture.

      • Related question – if the "shower" is when you give home-orientated gifts, what do you give as wedding gifts? (Obviously you can give whatever you want, but I mean traditionally.)

        Seems like most of the "shower" elements you guys have mentioned are covered by either the hen party or the actual wedding day, at a UK wedding at least.

        • Typically, wedding gifts are some form of money. I've seen people bring physical gifts off the couple's registry, but most bring a card with a check or gift card inside.

          So the shower is usually held to get the couple started with homey items, like kitchen utensils and bed sheets and bath towels. The bachelorette party is usually held to get the bride started with her sex life (but recently this has been turning into just a fun outing, like a spa day or a tea party). Hopefully this clears some confusion up ๐Ÿ™‚

          • Thanks! Useful info, just in case I ever get invited to one by an American friend…

            The bachelorette party = hen party thing seems pretty equivalent. But I had no idea about the shower thing. In Britain, the homey-items-from-the-registry stuff is normally the wedding presents. Just in case you ever need to know! (Maybe unlikely.) ๐Ÿ™‚

        • (since I can't reply on your "Useful Info" post)

          Whether the wedding gift is cash or a home gift seems to vary by culture and generation, both are considered entirely legit by most people though. You used to see a lot more physical gifts at weddings but that has been changing pretty noticeably even over the last decade.

          Weddings (like everything else) are staggeringly expensive here (NYC metro area) and the two dominant cultures in my area (Italian and Jewish) are big into "Nest Egg" style gifts so cash is becoming WAY more common.

          Generally you pick a full amount you want to give between however many parties you're attending (engagement, shower, wedding, whatever) and split that up accordingly, so if for example I were unable to attend someone's shower the money that would have gone toward that gift gets folded into their wedding gift.

          • Thanks everyone! That does kind of clear it up – but isn't it (sorry if this is massively stating the obvious) deeply weird that the household items are all given to the bride as presents, rather to the couple on their wedding day? I would LOVE it if we had a tradition that all the older female relatives could get involved in, I would even get on board with the marriage advice, but not if it meant telling me to do housework.

            Hawaiian shower sounds amazing though. If the groom didn't get a shower, then that lady 100% won at the honeymoon.

          • I actually had a shower just the other day called a Couple's Shower. It was equally held for both me and my fiancรฉ, the gifts were addressed to both of us, men were there and having a good time, he opened half the gifts and I the other half. It was much better than singling me out (the socially awkward person) and leaving him out of it when he was going to use most of those homey items more than me. I insisted that if I was being thrown a shower, it would be a couple's shower and nothing less would be acceptable. I was not going to make it all about me

  8. It's funny, because I actually find the whole idea of having a bridal shower and receiving any gifts really awkward (especially in a serious way). Having a funny game would actually put me more as ease about the concept. I guess it's because I've been on the giving side of things and have stressed out about money (once went to 2 bridal showers, 1 bachelorette, and had to buy the bmaid dress, etc for 1 wedding; and I was bmaid for other weddings that year too!). Also it just seems wasteful, FH and I already live together and have most of what we need, do we really need more stuff? It made sense back in the day when you moved out of mom and dad's house to go live with your husband, but now it's different. And I can't throw stuff away, what about the environment!?!

    While some of the games you've listed sound creepy and weird, some of them I've played at other people's shower and thought they were pretty fun (like everyone bring a pair of panties in a brown bag and the bride guesses who brought it – if she guesses wrong she has to wear the panties on her head). And most panties I could probably find room for in our 1 bdrm apartment (as opposed to a toaster or something).

    As for awkward because this family member is here, it's mainly a non-issue for me. My family has a pretty raunchy sense of humor, so these kinds of games are right up their alley. Most recent Christmases included a couple of games of "Cards Against Humanity" between xmas dinner and dessert. FH family is lives far away.

    So for me personally, put panties on my head! That sounds way more fun than the guilt of not really wanting the material things that were bought so generously for me. But to each their own, there's nothing wrong with not wanting that kind of party either!

  9. Wow! I had no idea people actually did these games! I've been to many wedding showers, (mostly in a liberal religious community) but never seen games like this played. I thought having those kinds of games at showers only happened on television. So, yeah, maybe it is your friends.

  10. I'd definitely be uncomfortable with this. But to be fair, I'm uncomfortable with sex-themed games/accessories at batchelorette parties…. I don't see why being open about sex means I have to wear a penis crown in public.

    • I agree, a sexual themed wedding party is weird. Bachelorette party would be okay I guess, but it depends on the bride. When my friend got married, we threw her a bachelorette party/passions party and she loved it. Now that it is my turn to get married, I don't want anything like that. My younger sister (MOH) wants to throw me a party and I immediately said No Strippers. She said we could go to Chippendales and I said No, I don't need sweaty manparts in my face. So I think the plan is to go bowling or something similar (and I get to wear a party veil and sash). Maybe its because I am in my 30's now, but that kind of stuff is all behind me. I just want to do something fun and clean with maybe some fruity umbrella drinks.

  11. Amongst my family/friends the Bridal Shower tends to be an opportunity for the Mom's/Grandma's/Aunt's and older family friends/relatives to celebrate with the Bride. It's usually hosted by the Bride's mother or in our circle, the MoH's mom (we've all been friends since we were kids and many of our parents are friends too so they like hosting for one another as a gift to Bride and the MoB). While a touch of risque is usually included (lingerie as gifts, marriage advice from those with experience, etc…) it's far from a raunchy affair. We save that for the Bachelorette Party and even then, it's tempered to the Bride (mainly) and other party goers personalities.

    Now, one friend of mine had some super sassy relatives and her mom had us play pin the penis on the man, her grandma won! It was hilarious and we all had a great time. Again, it fit the guest list for the Shower, these were ladies who enjoyed the laugh and didn't take it too seriously. My Grandma, would not be amused ๐Ÿ˜‰

    It's also an opportunity for wedding gifts to be given so guests/you don't have to haul them to/from the wedding reception.

  12. I am totally cool with giving and getting lingerie- which could be bras, nightgowns, even socks!- because what can I say? I'm a girlie girl and love frilly and lacy things. But I agree with you that the games are different. Ideally, the bride should like her lingerie, but I don't think the point of the games is for her to like them- they seem more like fun at her expense.

  13. It sounds like there's a breaking down of the boundaries of what ritual goes with what event, to be honest. Most all of those rituals would have been at a bachelorette party, not a wedding shower. But then again, most couples are living together or getting married later, so they already have all of their "home swag"; this makes the traditional bridal shower event of giving new home items obsolete. What's left? Giving of lingerie, sex toys, etc. and the games that go along with "naughty gifts".

    Also don't forget, American culture is still extremely puritanical, so sex toys, naughty games, etc are still treated with juvenile humor and giggles. There's also a certain pleasure some people derive out of embarrassing the shy person, too, and sexuality is the surefire way to do it.

    Personally, I don't think these new rituals are as widespread as you think (re: morning-after photo shoots myth), and you likely don't have as much to fear if you do have a bridal shower. If someone is organizing the shower, simply inform them that you want to keep it low-key and/or to keep your personality in mind.

    • I don't think the later age of marriage makes the shower as obsolete as a lot of people might think. but I do agree it is changing the dynamic of the pre-wedding parties.

      Admittedly I live in one of the most expensive areas in the country, but my tiny basement apartment is still rocking a heavy Target dorm-deco-chic vibe despite my mid 30s age and supposed DINK funding powers. Most of my friends are only *barely* to the point that school loans have stopped taking up all our available income and very very few people own homes.

      The focus is a bit different – my kitchen is pretty well stocked, but I for one am ULTRA psyched to have the opportunity to get drinking glasses without any advertisements etched in them and sheets with a *listed thread count*.

      Oddly I think this has made a lot of the Bachelorette parties a lot tamer. The drink till we drop and penis pasta parties of my twenties have been replaced by Winery days and Dinner and a Broadway show outings, often times with a few family members in tow.

  14. I think they are weird. I am sure we are intelligent enough to come up with better stuff than that nonsense!

  15. Typed a long response to this only to hit enter and see that I hadn't noticed it wasn't part of the regular tribe journals (which is where I got to it from) and it gave me an error message and sent me back to enter my name and email. No big deal except that it didn't save my comment! It should be fixed to where if you don't enter your name/email you get a pop up message or something or somehow it saves your message. I am super frustrated to have written for like 15 minutes only to have my message disappear.

  16. Yeah, um. I agree that it sounds totally awkward and awful. First off, let me say that I am not a prudish person. I will happily talk about sex, vibrators, weird kinky shit, it really doesn't matter, with anyone who wants to honestly talk about it, and I have. I love sex and sexy things. However, I HATE how sex is treated as performance by society rather than a fun and intimate and sometimes hilarious and awkward experience that people share together. To me, the ideas that you're passing along here relate almost entirely to the idea of sex as performance, and especially to the idea of woman as sex object. I don't really like fancy lingerie unless it's equally applied all around. If that means a dude ends up in a red lace thong, cool. But I object to the idea that women "must" dress up "for their man;" and that they're somehow not "doing their wifely duty" if they don't. If people decide that they like little lacy things, that's cool tooโ€” I just don't think that something as personal as lingerie preference ought to be pushed on someone, which is effectively what all of this amounts to.

    As you rightly stated, a lot of this is tied up in cultural nonsense about virginity as commodity, and is a natural extension of the woman-as-property and woman-as-sex-object-for-husband's-use mentality that's so prevalent among social conservatives of various stripes. It's steeped into the rest of our culture too though, which is why fancy lingerie exists almost exclusively for women and hardly at all for men. It really just serves to police people's expression of their sexuality, which is a shame if you ask me. Parties with games like the ones you describe really don't help matters.

  17. I've noticed showers and bachelorette parties morphing into one as well.
    At first I thought maybe people didn't do the traditional home gifts/family parties anymore because these days, many couples are already living together before marriage.
    But, many of these couples are also having sex together, too. So, in that sense, you don't need a dildo hunt anymore than you need a freakin' microwave.
    I don't get it, and my family is pretty laid back. I know it's all about personal preference and humor style, but I don't think I'd be into it! It just seems like some kind of weird form of hazing to me.

    • 'Don't need a dildo hunt anymore than you need a freakin' microwave'

      Possibly one of the best (and truest) sentences I've ever read on this blog!

  18. I am very open and love talking about sex, I talk to my mom and my friends about my sex life all the time, and they talk about theirs with me. It really just depends on the person. I would be fine with something like what you describe! I would love to get lingerie and sexy things at my shower.

  19. I would be horrified withy this kind of thing. A number of my friends are getting married now and I'm unfamiliar with many of the conventions, but several of them seem designed to be funny by embarrassing specific individuals. I also hate being the center of attention, so the idea of showers and bachelorette parties automatically make me uncomfortable before throwing in the "let's highlight our Puritan attitudes" angle. I think of sex as a private thing for myself, although I love the way my grandmother has bought me lingerie and never talks about it with me. That is a great way to go. Good luck with navigating this issue!

  20. From my experience, a bridal shower and a "lingerie" shower have been separate affairs. Both times I went to a more "naughty" event, it was primarily girls aged 17-25, no aunties and grandmas. I personally found them fun, though there were obviously people who were uncomfortable with the whole thing.

    The biggest weirdness I observed was from the people who were uncomfortable. I felt bad that clearly no one had explained to them what to expect. I also felt bad for one bride who, expecting lingerie and perhaps advice for her wedding night (her and her now-husband had been waiting until marriage to have sex) instead received joke "granny panties" and cotton underwear from Target. I then felt strange for going out of my way to purchase, nice, though relatively tame, nighties for the bride-to-be. And the only one really qualified to speak on sex in married life, her sister-in-law, was so uncomfortable even looking at bras and underwear.

    I think the biggest issue that comes out of "naughty" or embarrassing games is that many people aren't told to expect that. I think if everyone involved is aware, then sexy games and lingerie showers can be a lot of fun! I personally would love to have a lingerie shower and play games like this, which is why I'm very open about what I want in terms of celebrations like my bachelorette party and any bridal showers.

  21. I really feel that many bridal showers and wedding showers are just so over the top ridiculous. I mean come on, we are modern people, he knows I have been intimate with other men and made my experiences and I know he has been intimate with other women and made his experiences before we met . And so do my family and friends, even if maybe we are not talking about it in detail.

    We are not in medieval times where sex-ad is non-existent, even if one decides to keep his or her virginity until marriage, which I think is totally legitimate, the internet does not really leave any questions open as to what is going to happen during their marriage or what could be happening ๐Ÿ™‚

    Can we please be the adults that we should be in order to marry?
    I'm a grown woman and I know what I want and with whom I want that. I don't need my family and friends to help with a thing that I share with my future husband and him alone.

    Also, a wedding shower is definitely too late to talk about sex, if I should have any problems remaining with that ๐Ÿ™‚

    • The main paradox is that everyone would bury you under penis-themed accessories on your bachelorette night but they definitely don't want to talk about sex with you ๐Ÿ˜›

  22. I've only been to one shower like this and it was for my step-sister. Her family didn't really do the games so much as gift her with lingerie. She's fairly shy about this stuff (at least with her damn FAMILY) and was really embarrassed and hated the whole thing. The worst? When they wanted her to try on the lingerie in front of everyone and she refused. So her MOTHER (my step-mom) put on the white lacy number she had bought for her daughter and paraded around in it.* I hope she burned the thing.

    *Why yes, my step-family was really fucked up.

  23. I didn't even know this was a thing until my own wedding shower. In my world, showers are for kitchen appliances and tea sandwiches and punch, and bachlorette parties are for sex toys and underwear. I'd seen lingerie parties as a start to the bachlorette party, but never experienced underwear as a shower gift. So I'm at my shower, with grandma, a bunch of great aunts that had to be invited to smooth down ruffled feathers, and my 14 year old cousin. I'm opening cookbooks and dish towels, and all of a sudden – lingerie. It was so out of place that it was just awkward. I'm not shy about talking about sex, even with relatives, but it has to be one or the other. Mixing in the sexy clothing in with the casserole dish just made it stand out that much more. Weird!

  24. I have seen both ends of this spectrum. I planned a "bachelorette" for an uber strict Christian friend of mine from high school – it was basically G rated games (some of which I made up on my own, yey!) and a reserved back room at a nice restaurant, we were done by 8pm, everyone was happy. Another friend from high school wanted the full naughty games, penis accesories, and pub crawl – we were home around 2 am, everyone was happy. I want something down the middle, I think the advice of knowing your audience is key! Notice how those were two very different parties yet all people were pleased with the results ๐Ÿ™‚

  25. I really really hate those kinds of games. I don't talk about my sex life with anyone that I'm not sleeping with, so I don't talk about other people's sex lives. And I am also probably no fun at parties.

    So, for my cousin's wedding shower, I put together a game of The Price Is Right with household items like toothpaste, fingernail polish, and pasta sauce.
    For my wedding shower, my sister put together a game of Kristin & Jeff Jeopardy, where all the answers would come from our wedpage if people had read it.

    To me, those are the fun kinds of shower games. Not the humiliating ones.

  26. Having only one married friend whose close friends and family threw her a surprise bridal shower with ONLY the people from her church, I've never been to a shower… My first will be my own and it'll be thrown by my two bridesmaids who are a lot more outgoing than I am! I told them I trust them completely and at the very least I steered them away from taking me to a strip club which would be pure torture for me (and not in a good way!). I think I'm going to post this article on Facebook and see if I get any reactions from them but I'm most wary of what they're planning. Part of me wants to be open to whatever because it's just all in the fun of it. The other part of me thinks that it's silly that intimacy seems to be the only element associated with married life that these parties focus on.

  27. You are not a prude. The idea of "brides" needing advice about their "wifely duties" would hopefully go out the window in cases where the couple already lives together, but that's clearly not the case. ๐Ÿ™ I was over the sexualization of wedding parties in 8th grade when I went to have a bridesmaid's dress fitting, came out of the fitting room and heard my aunt (MoG) ask my mother if she'd padded my bra. (Yes, I was a 36C at age 13. It was none of her fuggin' business if it had been padding. She just has no sense of class or kindness.)

    My First Mate for the Wedding Crew is already under instructions to keep the sex jokes for the bachelorette night, if even then. What I joke about with my friends is entirely different than what I want my aunts and mother to hear. Hell, I'm even more comfortable talking about our kinks on here than I am with my family. Here I know there's no judgement and hatred to spill over into the rest of my life. Who knows how the next family reunion could go if Aunt G. finds out one of us likes costumes!

  28. I completely agree! I live in Poland and here we have two types of wedding showers: one is just a "girl party" which is basically the same as every other "girl party", and one is… penis party. The maid of honor organises it, buys tons of "funny" accessories like headbands, drinking straws, faux veil, cookies, everything themed with tiny plastic penis. When I see this, I want to puke.

    That's why I'm not having any wedding shower. A real rite de passage was when I decided to live with my fiance and being married won't change anything in our lives.

    Greetings from Europe ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. I think it's totally up to you! If it feels weird to you, then it's weird. I personally come from a very sex positive background and I could totally see a naughty party as being lots of fun (Mom's participation maybe not so much). But if the bride feels uncomfortable, that should be the end of it. Period. It's a simple matter of boundaries and consent.

  30. … I've been to a lingerie party that was a bachelorette party, not a wedding shower… and it included the mother-in-law, three aunts-in-law, two girls who the bride hardly knew, the pre-teen sister-in-law, and, awkwardly enough, the father-in-law (who wasn't invited but who kept leaving his place of shunning in the basement in order to lurk drunkenly in the background). And yes, at this horrific, torturous event, all of the in-laws, including MIL and 12-year-old SIL, presented the bride with super sexy underthings–including a thong for the groom–and mocked her to no end while she opened them. It was awful, and I really don't know what I'd do if it happened to me. Probably say I was sick and leave. Are there other families out there who think it's ok to have in-laws at the bachelorette party, or am I the only one who thinks this is messed up?

  31. I am a future mother in law. When I received the invitation to my future daughter in law's bridal shower, with the card in it asking for everyone to bring unwrapped panties, in her size, that described my personality, I cringed. . Number 1) I don't want to be describing my personality to strangers, and number 2) not through a pair of panties (private clothing worn under clothing, under-ware)!

    Many years ago my mother went to Paris. She brought back a pair of fine French panties for me. A gift tastefully and appropriately given. But to do this at a bridal shower in mixed company? Perhaps a little more consideration for others is in order…. Just saying….

  32. If somebody whips out a little lingerie at a shower in somebody's home, I'm ok with that. It's the public explicit sex experiences I want to avoid, to whit:
    One bachelorette party I attended was held in a sports bar and had a very strong "penis" theme: playing cards with penises on them, little plastic wind-up hopping penises, penis napkins, straws with dickheads on the top of them — you get the picture. People were walking by our tables and shaking their heads. More than just "inappropriate for a public bar", the whole thing felt extremely juvenile. I thought things had died down after we ordered food but no, the party planners had one more surprise: a giant dick-and-balls shaped cake, complete with whipped cream jizz and little chocolate sprinkle ball hair, the piece de resistance of this buffet of embarrassment.

  33. Here in the UK the penis themed party's definitely a thing on your hen night/bachelorette: pink glittery everything, learner driver stickers, fake veils, feather boas, often cowboy hats for some reason?! And lots and lots of penises. This is usually teamed with going out on the lash, wearing the bare minimum, and falling over in your local high street.

    I'm more of the prudish stripe of Brit, who would be utterly horrified if someone wanted my hen to be like that! One friend got married recently, for her hen we had bridesmaids and friends paint pottery and go out for a curry. The bridesmaids and mothers also went to the spa in the run up to the wedding. That's more my thing.

    What I think is weird is the bachelorette, learner driver type stuff – I'm not a bachelorette just as my FH is not a bachelor! We are very much taken! And having lived together we have no need of this American style shower of household goods. For me, I imagine there will be afternoon tea and generous quantities of champagne for friends and family, and people can bring fancy underwear if they like – but if anyone produces a penis shaped anything, I will be informing them that they're very sweet to try and help, but I already know what that looks like!!

  34. I think because our culture isn't very good at being open about sex, the whole thing is so taboo that when someone does get an opportunity to talk about it like a bridal shower/hen do they go completely overboard. Its something that would happen less if people were just more mature about the subject (in my opinion). Personally, I'm pretty open about sex and sexuality in general, I don't think its healthy to avoid the subject but I don't get into the intimate details of how me and my fiance work in the bedroom. I don't need relative strangers to buy me underwear or give me advice because a i don't need it and b it makes me feel really uncomfortable! It makes me kind of cringe to see penis themed parties and people getting absolutely wasted and wearing panties on their heads but I'm not trying to knock it for other people, I'm sure there are so many who'd find that hilarious and enjoyable, but for an anxious introvert like myself it really wouldn't be my thing. And this sounds harsh but I think, well if a random relative organised such a party for me it would be a terrible day but I don't know them enough for it to affect our relationship, but if a good friend or my mother tried to push that kind of event on me it would probably damage us quite a lot because they clearly either dont know me at all or do but don't respect how i am

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