For parents-to-be expecting their own little bundle of joy via adoption or surrogacy, having a baby shower can be very exciting. But for those throwing the shower, it can be a little tricky. Sure, you want to celebrate the upcoming birth and adoption of the baby, but you don’t want to stir up any uncomfortable feelings, either. That doesn’t mean that the mom or dad-to-be should miss out on all the fun of a baby shower, though. Nicole Witt, Executive Director of The Adoption Consultancy, offers these tips for planning an adoption shower.
Time it right.
Before you break out the blue or pink balloons, ask the prospective parents what they want. “Some might want the baby shower prior to the birth, while others will prefer to have the shower after the placement when they no longer have to worry about the adoption falling through,” says Witt. Being aware of the soon-to-be parents’ wishes can help make planning go smoother.
If your friends aren’t adopting a newborn, (or if the shower is taking place some time after the placement), make sure that the guests know the age and size of the child so they can buy age-appropriate gifts. That way, a newborn doesn’t get gifted with a ton of 2T size clothing.
Choose a non-pregnancy theme.
With traditional baby showers, storks and bumps abound. With an adoption shower, though, it might require a little more sensitivity. “Give it a non-pregnancy theme, such as something cultural associated with the birth mother’s life,” offers Witt. You can even opt to theme the party according to where the baby will be born (like a bunch of clouds if the baby will be born in the Windy City), or make it match the nursery design.
Bring in the boys!
Since an adoption shower isn’t a traditional baby shower, consider making it co-ed! This makes it more of a party celebrating the upcoming arrival of the baby or child, rather than focusing on the pregnancy part of a baby shower. “Since the shower will be less pregnancy-centric, it can be more of a celebration of life and the couples’ journey towards parenthood,” says Witt.
Have fun drinks.
A perk of an adoption shower: everyone can drink! So serve mimosas or another specialty/themed cocktail (with or without alcohol), so that party guests and the parents-to-be alike get to partake in delicious drinks.
Games are a must.
Baby shower games might elicit groans from guests, but that shouldn’t stop you from getting your game on. Avoid pregnancy-related games (i.e. measuring the bump with toilet paper), but have fun relay games to see how fast the men can diaper the baby, or guess what the baby pooped by putting your hand in the diaper blindfolded. You can even do a nursery rhyme jeopardy game or a baby item scavenger hunt.