Is it true that Jews do not have baby showers?

Answered by
Rabbi Victor S. Appell

Although there is no prohibition against baby showers, traditionally, Jews do not have them prior to the birth of a child. Some couples do not buy any baby items or set up the nursery until the child is born. There is no religious basis for this custom, which is rooted in superstition. Nonetheless, it is a prevalent custom in the Jewish community.

The custom stems from the idea that drawing attention to a happy occasion also draws the attention of evil spirits. This custom also may hearken back to a time when infant mortality was a concern. Though it is much less an issue today, and most people are not overly superstitious, many Jews still shy away from lavish showers, preferring instead to buy only what they need to prepare, or to order items ahead of time that will be delivered only after the baby is born.