Your child was invited to a birthday party…here’s how not to be THAT parent
We are on the eve of yet another birthday party that we are throwing and I’m a little disappointed.
My children absolutely love birthday parties – they enjoy celebrating their own birthdays with their friends and they love helping their friends celebrate theirs.
Really, what child doesn’t love a birthday party? You get to pick out the perfect gift to give, play with your friends, and eat cake! It’s the best day ever for the kids! For the parent throwing the party? Not so much – especially when you’ve sent out invitations only to deal with THAT parent time and time again.
Like the time that THAT parent didn’t RSVP, dropped their child off on the curb of your house empty handed and then drove away without even a wave.
Or the time that THAT parent RSVP’d for their children to attend super special mermaid party with custom treats for the guests and never showed.
Or the time that not a single one of THOSE parents bothered to RSVP at all!
Now I get it, I really do…we are busy. We forget. I totally understand. I myself have forgotten to RSVP only to frantically text the party host the night before apologizing profusely. But you know what? I made sure to communicate with them.
I’ve also had a child give me an invitation days after a party already happened. They had forgotten it in their backpack all week and never gave it to me. Do you know what I did? I called the mother and apologized, let her know what happened, and bought a small gift for my child to give to their friend at school. I felt awful.
We’ve unfortunately had to experience THAT parent one to many times and to be honest, I’m quite annoyed by it. So much so that I think we need to go over a few things.
How not to be THAT parent when your kids gets a party invite
First of all, let’s go over what RSVP means. It is an acronym for a French phrase that is “répondez, s’il vous plaît” – or in English “Please RESPOND”. In other words, PLEASE LET THE HOST KNOW IF YOU WILL BE ATTENDING OR NOT.
An RSVP should take but a few minutes of your time. Typically parents put a cell phone number or an email address on the invite and all you need to do is write a quick line that says “looking forward to the party” or, “I’m sorry we won’t be able to attend”. Super simple.
If something comes up
Now, if you have RSVP’d that you will be attending and something comes up let the host know about it! For one, those children are expecting their friends to be there. Imagine how your child would feel if their friends had said they would be there and come party day, they were not! Or the party host might have put together personalized party gifts for the kids, if you just don’t show something tells me the host might be a little irked. Not only that but it’s just the courteous thing to do!
Bringing extra guests
If one of your children was invited to a classmates party, do not assume that his three siblings, cousins, and the neighbor down the street were invited too! In other words, don’t bring the whole family or the kid your baby sitting, etc. unless you’ve asked the host ahead of time.
You forgot to RSVP
It’s the night before, or the morning of the party and you realize that you forgot to RSVP. That’s ok! Just call, text, email, send a carrier pigeon…and either let the host know what happened and that you can’t make it or ask if it is still ok that your child attends. It’s all about manners people!
If it’s a drop off party
Ok, first of all, if it is a preschool aged child…it is NOT a drop off party. If you plan on dropping off your 4 year old talk to the host first. If it is an older school aged child then drop away….BUT meet the host first! As mentioned above, DO NOT pull up alongside the curb, let your 9 year old out of the passenger side and drive out without so much of a wave! And while we are on the drop off subject, if you are dropping your child off and your ex is picking them up do make sure to relay proper pick up time information so that your child is not left at a party an hour after everyone else has left.
Are we all in agreement on Birthday party etiquette for parents?
Are we all in agreement here? Can we please relay this information to our friends, family, school board, PTO, heck shout it from the rooftops! Because if I have to have one more party where no one shows, or uninvited guests come and I’m scrambling to find enough food and party supplies to cover the extras I just might lose it. Let’s just all agree that we will take 2 minutes to RSVP when our children bring home party invitations.
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