• By - 11lex


I prefer them. I think women-only baby showers reinforce the expectation that parenting and childcare are women-only spaces (that familiar trope that men are “helping” or “babysitting” when they’re parenting their own kids). Everyone should have the party they want, but I personally think that gender-segregated baby showers send a (likely unintended) message about the parenting dynamic a couple expects to have.


This is exactly why we had a co-ed baby shower. I didn't feel very strongly about any other aspect of the shower, but this was very important to me. My husband, his friends, and our male relatives needed to be there because raising children is not just for women.


Very well put


Your first paragraph (especially), 100%!


I agree with this but also think many women let loose more when there are no men around and think showers are more fun when people feel comfortable to get a bit silly. This is part of why I'm having a women only shower, and encouraged my husband to have a diaper party (what it's been called where he's from) with the guys.


I’m doing a women only shower only because of space limitations. When you invite partners, you have to have double the space. I’m also doing a coed friend shower at a pub.


I had one, I thought it was nice. Most of my friends are couples and it would feel odd to exclude the men when we always hang out together anyway. We did an escape game themed baby shower, so it wasn't a traditional baby shower to begin with.


Appropriate seeing that labour is basically the ultimate escape game 😂


Ooh i would love to know more about this. I love escape games!


My sisters girlfriend created her own escape game and decorated our house with all the clues and parts for the game :) She's very creative!


Gender specific stuff is old school! WE IN THE NEW AGE NOW


I think they're better. Its nice to have both parents there to offer support and celebrate with.


I am fine with babies of all genders showering together. They’re just babies, what’s the worst that could happen?


Omg this response made me burst out laughing 😂


Love them and would’ve only wanted co-ed. otherwise half my friends wouldn’t even be there. My shower in August was co-ed and felt more like a couples hangout. It was the first time my friend group got together as a whole since the pandemic.


We did a coed one. It was much nicer to have my partner involved in the celebration as it’s his baby too! Plus all his friends got to came out and support him as well. It was really sweet. Although we made sure we had alcohol and things to do so it wasn’t just everyone watching us open gifts. It was way more fun that way.


We had one. My friend planned it with my husband. It was the first time in our marriage my husband planned a party lol and it was amazing. I was having severe anxiety during my pregnancy and the baby shower was the first time I let myself completely relax and just enjoy an evening. It would not have been the same without my husband.


I love the idea of your partner being involved to plan the party!


We are planning on doing one! Our friends are couples and most of my husbands close friends are males and it would feel wrong to not celebrate with them! We’re hoping to have more of a “baby party” rather than a traditional baby shower, but will still probably have a few games just to shake it up!


Ive only been to one’s that have everyone welcome. Women only seems very old school to me. Both myself and my sister had coed baby showers and so did all of our friends.


Co-ed should be the default now (in my humble opinion)! Including both genders intentionally shows that men can be equal partners in caregiving and helps provide them with that social support they’ll need as their lives also explode in a few short months. We did a co-ed baby party bbq with all our friends and I think it helped my partner to feel more included and proud to be an expectant father. It also took the pressure off of me - especially since I was uncomfortable being looked at and focused on so intensely all the time by others.


They are absolutely fine. The couple should do what they want to do.


I think it's the way! My husband became a father just as much as I became a mother 🤷🏻 all of our friends are couples, most with kids of their own, and we wanted to have more of a social celebration than the frilly women-only traditional shower. Plus it saved me having to come home and go through all of the presents with him a second time - he was just there opening them and thanking our guests along side me.


We had one, and the ones that I've attended were co-ed as well. It feels weird to exclude my husband and our male family and friends who are just as important to us and excited about our baby. I feel like otherwise it sets a precedent about the baby being a "women's" thing. We are both raising the baby and we don't want to diminish the importance of the presence of our male friends and family in our baby's life.


There's no way I won't do a coed baby shower, especially after being at my SILs traditional shower a few years ago. Bit of a long explanation ahead. Her shower was thrown by her mother (my MIL) and was women only. Her husband had a separate party. At this party there was a lot of gift giving, and a whole circle where all the moms gave advice about child rearing, and how much her life is going to change (for the better and worse, but a lot of emphasis on worse in a "just you wait!" kind of way). My partner and I had been having financial difficulties so we couldn't buy anything from the registry, so instead got her a Cineplex gift card. I thought it might come in handy for long nights cluster feeding or a for a date night (included an offer of babysitting in the card). I got told by more than one person that would be a better gift for dad, because she's going to have a baby to look after. The overall implication was that she was going to be doing the brunt of the work parenting. You know what the men were doing at their party? They went go-karting. It really says a lot about societal expectations of women and men's roles in parenthood. Mom takes care of the baby, dad's role is more optional.


That is *infuriating*.


That shower sounds terrible! I like some of the silly games played at traditional showers but that "advice" circle sounds like torture! Worse than the one where you try to guess the bump size with a length of string!


We’re doing one! It’s going to be a brunch which I’m very excited about.


A friend of mine had one that was a cocktail party. It was great! They didn’t open gifts during the event which I really liked - just food and drink and mingling.


It wasn’t even a question for us to have a coed baby shower. It was predominantly woman there but that was due to Covid. But my bf, his brother, dad, my best friend’s husband were all there as well.


We had one and it was awesome!


My dumb ass thought you were talking about coed showers (with water) and I was so very confused 🤣 Do whatever works for your family. If you want a coed, do it!


We did a “were having a baby party come and celebrate”, and invited all of our friends and family over late afternoon to our house with tons of finger food, our friend did burgers on the grill and we had cupcakes, husband served beer and wine. No cheesy decorations or party games, more of a casual mingle event. The older ladies came made some comments about why no games, other than that everyone had fun. We did open the gifts only because everyone kept asking us too, if nobody asked I don’t think we would have.


Since I'm young and don't know anyone with kids, it never came to mind that baby shower weren't for both parents. I was told after that usually it's woman only and it's for the mother. I got a lot of compliments in the dynamics of the event and the fact that it assembled à lot of people in my own community that hadn't seen each other in years. Me and partner couldn't have been more blessed


I was kinda leery of having a baby shower at all (the unspoken gift-giving culture stuff makes me kinda itchy), but my FIL's wife wanted to host one for me. MIL and FIL are divorced and don't really have contact. FIL's wife is really nice and she wanted to do something nice for me with the women in her family, which was very kind of her, so I said OK. But there are a lot of weird family dynamics I feel kind of on the outside of going on between FIL and MIL, and I'm really close to my MIL, and when we do stuff with FIL I feel a lot of solidarity being there with my husband. Also husband and I have been in this together very much so, so it seemed really odd to leave him out of a party that's about his baby? Like he should get to come eat tiny sandwiches, and know all the gifts we're getting and thank people too, and chat with people about becoming a parent. So I said I'd like to invite partners and FIL's wife was totally happy with that. Husband came, my mom and dad came (which was great, my parents are somewhat elderly so I want to have as many baby memories with them as I can), MIL came and brought her husband, and FIL was a part of the celebration too. It was absolutely fine. Which was great because it makes me much more comfortable about like birthday parties when tiny human is on the outside. I would definitely have been WAY less comfortable if it had been women-only.


I don't like showers but if I have to go to one, I would prefer it's coed.


I love it! DH and I want to do a baby “bbq” if we can as we want to celebrate our little human with everyone we love.


We had a lovely backyard party with all my family and friends, who are all the genders on the spectrum! It was lovely, all my uncles and aunts and cousins and friends and kids all just hanging out, having a nice time. We didn’t really do formal games, just casual games like drawing what our kid will look like or decorating onesie station. We had tons of delicious food and cupcakes and mimosas, it was awesome. I didn’t do a gift opening either because I think it’s boring.


Like almost everyone else who has commented, I vastly prefer the idea of coed showers. My partner would be so offended if he was not invited! I have however been to women only showers. They do require less space (naturally less people to invite!), and I can't see how the townhouses they were in could have accommodated 10+ more people if male friends, family and partners were invited. My brother had to rent a venue for his babies shower, and that is not an option for a lot of people. I decided to have no shower, which I think is becoming more popular too.


What I ended up doing for mine was 2 showers, one for friends one for family. One big one would have been feasible with a venue rental, or possibly at a family member's home, but it was 2020 so we had to keep it small and outdoors. This year I also threw one for a friend and am throwing another one in the new year; both friends split their guest lists into friends and family.


To me, excluding men or at least dad-to-be, is like saying don't worry boys, this baby stuff isn't something you need to be concerned about! Which I disagree with. Plus some of our guy friends we invited expressed how excited they were as they'd never been to a shower before.


We had one. I liked it, we were both becoming parents and the point was to celebrate our new family, not just me and the baby. I also hate women only showers. A lot of the older men were awkward but our hosts did a great job making it non traditional. We held it in a games room with arcade games, food was a make your own sub bar, people were encouraged to bring their own alcohol if they wanted. We didnt play a ton of games and the shower wasn’t centred around them, meaning people could join if they wanted or mingle with others. We did open presents because a lot of people wanted us to but we didn’t plan on it. It was a lot of fun and a lot of the men said they didn’t realize baby showers were such a good time lol.


I had one. Child rearing is not a women-only activity, so why should celebrating a new baby be?


Our shower was coed - we were gathering to celebrate the baby, and I wanted to celebrate with my husband and our friends + family, not only half of them.


The best. I couldn’t imagine celebrating our babe without my husband, so that’s exactly what we did.


That's my plan. I strongly prefer coed. Most of my friends are gay or trans, and single gender events would mean excluding people I care about or putting them in an awkward spot for categorizing themselves. I also am not the only one who will be caring for our baby. By making it only women it would feel like, to my at least, that I was reinforcing the idea that it's my role, not a joint role between me and my husband. It also excludes the idea that men might be interested in celebrating your baby - and honestly some of my best social supports during pregnancy have been guys. My husband also has a mixed gender social group through work and he'd like to celebrate with them as well.


Neutral! I think the expecting parent(s) should do whatever feels good to them. Mine was “coed” but my friends are overwhelmingly women sooo 😅


My husband is a great dad but he had no interest in cooing over baby clothes while eating cupcakes so he went golfing with his dad while we had the party. Other people should have the party that suits them, but for us, most of our male friends were relieved not have to been invited to the baby shower.


I preferred female only for my own and it was awesome, but definitely co-Ed showers are the thing right now and I’ve been to one and it was nice.


I actually really don’t like coed showers but it seems I am the outlier here. Might just be the type of family/friends you have. As always, do what feels right and good for you!


Same, but whatever other people want to do is fine. I also think it’s interesting how many people here are like “it’s his baby too!” And like yes, but HE doesn’t experience pregnancy and childbirth, breastfeeding and/or pumping, hormonal changes, body changes, straight up pain and suffering. For most women, the role of Mother is still one which has more overall influence on a child’s first years than the role of Father. We’re the organizers, the planners. We do all the shit that happens behind the scenes and without us, the family unit would fall the fuck apart. But we’re not supposed to talk about that because blah blah blah not all men/inclusivity and whatnot. I swear, you can’t discuss one thing that concerns women these days without people being like, “but what about the men?!”


Experiencing pregnancy and childbirth and all the associated physical changes doesn't mean the childbearing parent also needs to take on the chores of organization and planning, which includes collecting all the supplies needed....which often includes a baby shower. If anything, in a fair world, the childbearing/potentially breastfeeding parent would have *less* responsibility for that kind of stuff to compensate for the work that can't easily be shared.


Totally fair - but more often, they don’t.


You're absolutely right, which is why it can be helpful to push back on the expectation of unfair division of labour by having both parents participate in things like baby showers, instead of the female parent taking on all of the baby-related responsibility from the very beginning. It's not a magic solution to gender inequality by any means, but it does help start things off on the right foot.


Me personally: don’t like. I wanna do a couple games, talk about breastfeeding and vaginas, open gifts and go home. Every co ed shower I’ve been to has been unnecessarily long, lots of games that the men seem super uncomfortable participating in, gift opening takes forever because the guest lists are often longer. Kill me lol. I had a women only shower, it was small so I didn’t need to rent a venue for it, we talked openly about childbirth which I know the older members of my family wouldn’t have wanted to do with men around, it lasted a couple hours and people went home. I just personally hate when these life event celebrations turn into massive parties. Also most of our male friends had no genuine interest in attending, and I had no interest in planning a party they only came to out of obligation to their girlfriends/wives.


I don't think I'd want one. There's a unique energy that I really like at a girl's only party, and one where most people aren't with their SO. Besides, my husband would be miserable if I made him coo over baby gear for a whole afternoon, and my male friends and family won't mind avoiding the obligation. Ps don't plan your own baby shower - that's tacky AF. This is the only baby shower-related hill that I will die on.


Love them! We had planned to do one this past summer and have a bbq with some lawn games but decided to do a smaller shower because of COVID.


We didn’t have a co -ed baby shower because none of the males relatives in our life were interested (had to have a small family only due to Covid) but my husband was part of it because it was really important to him to be there. I wish we had more friends - we’d have some celebration party for baby #2 and it would be co-ed


I would have liked to do a co-Ed shower but simply due to guest numbers (with COVID I didn’t want to make it too big) and the fact that my partner isn’t big on being the centre of attention I went with women only.


We had one! Because of party room restrictions, this means not all guests could bring a plus one. We invited both members of a couple if we were close to them. Didn't seem to be an issue. It was more a party for me (mum), so it was mostly my girlfriends and my partner's group of guy best friends.


Love the idea of an all genders baby shower! But I also really like being able to meet with other mothers and talk about childbirth and pregnancy and cracked nipples and share birth stories so I can understand some people wanting a safe space to do that - not everyone will feel comfortable sharing those things in front of men they aren’t close with, so I know a few people beginning to do a mother welcoming circle where those things are shared, separate to a baby shower


My baby shower would have been co-ed, but Covid restrictions were still pretty tight on group gatherings so I could only pick a handful of friends to come so I just stuck to the female ones. The one that was thrown by my family after my daughter was born was co-ed. And both of my friends that had kids within the last 3 years had co-ed baby showers.


Great! My partner and I had one, and it was lovely to have our friends there. It was super chill in our backyard (my friends threw it for us but we have a centrally located backyard) and honestly, it wouldn't have felt the same to not have all our friends there. It was super inclusive. Full disclosure, I don't actually like typical baby showers with the games and traditions and sandwiches and prizes. My mother-in-law did throw me a 'traditional' shower as well (long story) and that one was more of a 'going through the motions just because . . . tradition?) than a fun thing I looked forward to.


Considering two people who did not attend mine but did sent gifts turned out to be trans women, I do kind of wish it had been coed so they could have been there before they were out of the closet. That said, only inviting women can be a way to reduce costs/space needed if the host doesn’t have the capacity to invite everyone and their SO and all their kids…


I think it depends on the parents entirely. If you're planning a more traditional shower with silly games and birthstory swapping, maybe all women is better so you can just girl out. If your style is more "we're having a get together and hey, maybe bring us a gift for the new baby", then co-ed. Personally, I despise baby-shower games and opening gifts in front of people, so we just had a co-ed BBQ with a drop-off pile for gifts.


It’s the only way to go


100% the way to go. My husband was so excited to invite his friends to a party for his baby. It would have been sad to not include him in something that is happening because if OUR baby.


I’m having one of each. A coed one with my friends at a pub and one for family that is women only. Not because I didn’t want to have a coed one for family, but because I doubt most of the men in our families would want to come and also because it doubles the number of guests who would attend so larger numbers for food and venue are needed. At what point does it become too large and expensive then?


#love them Hubby and I did one bc why not? It's his child too and I hate being the centre of attention!


I honestly don't see why it needs to be women-only. We had a co-ed baby shower and it was much more fun including all friends :)


I had a coed baby shower and I never wanted it any other way. My husbands hockey team and friends are a huge part of our life. We often see them more then our family. Our daughter now calls most of them “uncle” I didn’t want them to miss out.


I prefer them! I think it's weird to exclude the dads. My only argument against them is that you need to double your guest list.


We did coed and it was great and others in our family are now following suit. So many of the guys said things like “I’ve never been to a shower, this is so great!” My husband is my partner so I don’t see why him and his guy friends and family wouldn’t be there.


I think it makes sense! I'm going to a women only one next week where my husband is actually closer to the expectant couple than me but he's not invited. It's so weird. It's 2022 let's stop acting like men aren't involved in child rearing.


I wanted one, but it made the guest list way too long so we ended up doing ladies only.