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To ask whether it's 'ok' not to go to your work christmas party?

(111 Posts)
stripeysoup Sun 07-Dec-14 20:19:22

I haven't been in my new job that long, don't know many people in the company and tend to get nervous in circumstances like this unless I've had a drink. I'm on medication at the moment which means that I can't drink very much without losing all inhibitions and coming out with embarrassing remarks (I know this from experience - they don't seem embarrassing when drunk but I cringe when I remember them the morning after!).

I decided not to go to the Christmas party because of the above, but I've had a few comments since asking why I didn't go. I'm not a very good lier unfortunately so didn't want to make up an elaborate excuse that would come back and bite me later - I just said that I had other plans.

Now I've got the impression that a few people think I'm snobby/rude/anti-social and have actively avoided me since.

Is it unacceptable not to go to your work christmas party without a cast iron excuse? Has anyone else not gone to their work christmas party and how did you get out of it?

hellyhants Sun 07-Dec-14 20:21:15

I never go. My colleagues can think what they like about it. My work is in London and I live in Hampshire. So I don't go.

Muchtoomuchtodo Sun 07-Dec-14 20:25:20

YANBU to ask, and YANBU to not go.

I didn't go to the first one after I started a new job. I joined the team in September and they were just booking it. I didn't feel that I knew anyone well enough to go and enjoy myself. When they went I was asked lots why I wasn't going / hadn't gone. I just said that I already had plans and no one seemed to question that.

What's more unreasonable is to go, stand around with a long face moaning about everything and then leave after a couple of hours as my colleague did on Friday confused.

Nydj Sun 07-Dec-14 20:26:39

I haven't been for at least sixteen years but then I have a pretty antisocial reputation to uphold.

NoSundayWorkingPlease Sun 07-Dec-14 20:26:43

'I had other plans' - it's a vague and dismissive comment, and I can well understand why people think it's snobby/rude.

Just say you couldn't get childcare, or that you're on antibiotics so can't drink and didn't want to be the only sober one there. Or that you had a sudden bout of d&v, or that you'd booked to (insert made up event) months ago, and couldn't make it.

I'm really gutted, would have loved to have been there, the photos look amazing...and so on.

Just anything other than a 'reason ' that sounds like you're saying you'd rather not spend time with them.

Laquitar Sun 07-Dec-14 20:27:51

I think the 'i have other plans' can sound like 'i have better plans' .
For that i say 'childcare issues' lol.

gingerbreadmam Sun 07-Dec-14 20:28:14

i'd avoid mine like the plague nowadays. dont get on too well with some people in the office and theyre some of the last people i would want to spend my weekend with.

doesnt help i feel were different 'classes' id be happy with local italian type place they want expensive places with fancy food ive never heard of so never dare order grin

NoelleHawthorne Sun 07-Dec-14 20:28:16

i think it is nice to make the effort and as I really like my colleagues I have a great time. I don't know what it would be like if you didn't. I think I would have changed jobs

Fluffyears Sun 07-Dec-14 20:28:58

I'mbit going to mine. I spend ebough time with them. Logistically it's also a nightmare and the money I have is all budgeted.

stripeysoup Sun 07-Dec-14 20:30:56

Glad to hear that I'm not the only one who didn't go.

NoSundayWorkingPlease -the invitations were sent well in advance so a sudden bout of anything wouldn't have cut it. I'm not a very good lier, so don't really like making things up - especially when it would involve making up a party/birthday and details etc.

Muchtoomuchtodo - very true, what's the point in going if you're not going to enjoy it.

EnlightenedOwl Sun 07-Dec-14 20:31:36

I didn't go to the big office party and looking at photos am glad
Nor am I going to the team do which I am getting a lot of stick for despite having valid reasons - don't drink, would struggle with the food on the menu, hate noisy crowded places.
I go to work do my job well but have a life beyond work.

ShadowKat Sun 07-Dec-14 20:31:49

Of course it's okay not to go.

I have several colleagues who hardly ever go to work Christmas parties. Some of them say they're not going because they don't get paid for it (it's not in work time), some say that they'd rather spend their free time with their partner and kids, and one colleague says that he will never go to another work Christmas party because he got drunk and humiliated himself at the first one he went to (about 20 years ago. He won't go into detail about what happened but it must have been hideously bad if it's still haunting him).

Seriously, if your colleagues are really actively avoiding you because of this, they sound a bit odd. Not everyone wants to spend their free time socializing with work colleagues, and they really shouldn't be making you feel that you need to have a cast iron excuse not to go.

AnyFuckerForAMincePie Sun 07-Dec-14 20:32:09

I haven't been to a works xmas do for about 15 years. I grew out of them.

Theorientcalf Sun 07-Dec-14 20:32:12

Not going to the Christmas party has never been an issue where I work, but then we work shifts so everyone can't go anyway. I always go if I can though, but some people don't/can't. It's a complete non issue.

NoelleHawthorne Sun 07-Dec-14 20:33:19

'. Some of them say they're not going because they don't get paid for it (it's not in work time), '

how funny

MakeMeWarmThisWinter Sun 07-Dec-14 20:34:14

Aw. I'm a sahm, can I go to the ones people aren't going to?

I miss a good old embarrassing drunken knees up with people you barely tolerate - best bit of working.

stripeysoup Sun 07-Dec-14 20:34:23

Ah yes, 'childcare issues' would probably have been a better excuse.

NoelleHawthorne - it's really not a case of not liking them, I don't know them very well and with other commitments don't have the time to spend getting to know them very well. I suppose that might sound antisocial but unfortunately there just aren't enough hours in the day

hedwig2001 Sun 07-Dec-14 20:34:51

I don't go to mine. I have Asbergers and it is my idea of hell!

december12 Sun 07-Dec-14 20:35:03

Of course it's Ok not to go and there have been times when I've avoided them, mainly because I didn't know many people well and get nervous in those situations. However, the times when I did make the effort to go were undoubtedly the times when I had the best relationships with my colleagues, when I settled into a new workplace quicker and when work was generally more fun.

reup Sun 07-Dec-14 20:36:15

Im not going to mine. It would have cost £60 for nothing very special.

NoelleHawthorne Sun 07-Dec-14 20:36:36

we had sixty at ours.. was brilliant, we had a room in a restaurant, we had a long meal and sat about chatting and laughing as the dancers went off to clubs etc.
Home in bed by midnight.

Hassled Sun 07-Dec-14 20:36:54

I don't go. I really like 95% of my colleagues, but I know that chances are I'll be sat next to one of the 5%. And I see enough of all of them when I'm, you know, at work - I don't want work to spill into my out of work time. There's quite a few of us who don't go - no-one really seems to notice and if they care, they're too polite to mention it.

elastamum Sun 07-Dec-14 20:38:33

Ours is a Friday evening and its a 2 hour drive home afterwards as I live a long way away and normally work from home. I cant imagine anything worse than being the only sober person in a room full of drunk colleagues. I haven't been for years and thankfully they have given up on expecting me to go.

NoelleHawthorne Sun 07-Dec-14 20:39:30

Ours was nice as there were about 5 tables with a huge variety of folk on it, then afterwards people mooched about and chatted in different groups.
Senior managers all just mucking in.

We have a colleague terminally ill atm and it was lovely to share time with them

AlpacaStockingOnChristmasEve Sun 07-Dec-14 20:41:30

It's fine not to go. It's fine to not want to go.
It's not fine to sneer at the invitation and say 'I can think of better things to do with my own time than spend it with you' as an ex colleague did... She was a delight to work with hmm

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