DEAR MISS MANNERS: My friend and I were pregnant with our first children at the same time. We both had baby showers.
I was raised to believe you got only one baby shower, ever, to help set you up. When she was pregnant with her second child, she had another shower even though she was having another girl. The girls would only be two years apart, and my friend had everything she needed for the second one already.
Now she is pregnant a third time, with another girl, and she's having another shower! Her children are the only grandchildren on either side of her family, so she gets tons of stuff.
I understand celebrating every new life, but I feel she's taking advantage. She's getting rid of items to make room for new stuff.
Am I wrong to feel irked? If she were in need, I would understand, but the overall vibe I get is that she's being greedy and will return items to buy personal things.
When will it stop? At her fifth or 10th? What is my obligation? She is a good friend, but this is just one situation I feel very strongly about, and she doesn't see a problem. I love her kids, but I don't want to help furnish her wardrobe or home from my returned, unneeded baby gift.
GENTLE READER: You have no obligation, whatsoever. You do not need to attend any more showers. Simply tell your friend that you're unavailable ... to furnish her children's future (but we'll keep that part between ourselves).
You won't be able to convince her politely that these showers are excessive, especially if others are so willing to oblige. Rest assured, however, that Miss Manners will continue the battle on your behalf.