In this day and age, it is no longer uncommon for baby showers to include both men and women in the festivities.
First-time fathers, after all, are just as excited as the mothers in anticipation of their little bundle of joy, so it is not really surprising that dads-to-be would like to be included in the pre-arrival celebrations as well.
Of course, a coed baby shower party has its own dynamics that set it apart from the all-girl baby shower.
The secret to any baby shower is enthusiastic and all-out participation from your guests, so when you plan a coed baby shower you do have to keep in mind that there are both male and female participants you will have to keep entertained during the event.
So how do you plan a coed baby shower?
1. Check with the parents first.
The mother is the guest of honor in any baby shower, so she has to be okay with a co-ed shower party before any plans are made. If she agrees to it, then talk to the dad-to-be also, as he absolutely must be in on the idea for it to even get off the ground. Once you get the father-to-be on board, it will be easier to rally the other guys for the event.
2. Wording is important.
For the invitations, you may want to use more gender-neutral terms such as “celebration” or “party”. When guys hear the word “shower”, they immediately think of lots of pink balloons and streamers. Make sure that invitations are addressed to couples (if applicable), and that it is very clearly indicated that this is for both men and women.
3. Don’t drive the guys away with decorations.
No matter how successfully you convince the male guests to show up at the coed shower party, if they arrive at the venue and see lots of pink lace, frilly streamers, gift baskets of bath soaps and scented candles, and baby bottles filled with colorful jellybeans, they will probably do a U-turn and head home. Tone down the décor and stick to simpler, less loud colors (even if the baby is a girl).
4. Have a male host.
During the activities, have both a male and female host to keep things moving. This sets guys at ease, and they will welcome the familiarity that a male comrade brings especially if it is someone from their circle of friends. Make sure the father-to-be has an active participation in the program as well.
5. Food is more important than ever.
The best way to win a man’s heart is… the stomach, and in planning a coed baby shower this is very true as well. Guys will be more likely to overlook the girly gift tables and party favors if they see a steak carving corner or a make-your-own-taco station when they walk in. Have a menu that appeals to big manly appetites, but have an abundance of desserts and treats for the ladies as well.
6. Separate activities are acceptable.
There really are baby shower activities that you can’t man up no matter how you try. When it comes time for those birthing advice and discussions, or the games for the moms, have a guy zone where the men can retreat and have their own fun.