AIBU to feel sad(26 Posts)
My stepson has a birthday in December. So we (Dad and me (step Mum))have said we would pay for him and 2 friends to go sledging at our local snozone then for food after. He wrote the invites out the other weekend for the 16th (which is a Saturday) and gave them to the two friends he wanted to invite. We got the response back last week they are busy. So I said I’m happy to be flexible, week night, Friday night, Saturday all day and Sunday.
But it’s come back today that no they are busy.
I know December is a busy time but I suspect this isn’t that they are busy. I suspect it’s that my stepson is not a popular child. He has never (on either our weekends or at his mums) been invited to a birthday. We did a small birthday party for him in year 1 and invited 20 children of which 3 came.
I think I just feel sad that what could be a really good treat for him won’t be.
I don’t know what to do now. I can’t sledge with him as have bad joints.
Any suggestions on what we do so he has a nice birthday?
How old is he? Can his dad sledge with him? Does he have siblings or cousins?
I have to admit I would be trying to get to the bottom of why DC don't want to come to his party. That's not just a question of not being popular - most DC will happily go to a party even of a child they are not really friendly with.
How old is he? Has his mum planned something that his friends are going to?
Are the two he invited genuine friends? Have they come over to yours at other times?
Yes that is sad. How horrible to be left out of birthday parties.
Are there other friends he could invite?
That is really sad, poor kid.
Does he do any clubs outside of school? Both my children have made good friends this way -friends who have the same interests and want to do similar things.
To answer questions
He will be 10 so I feel it’s an important birthday.
His dad will sledge with him but has circulation problems so won’t be able to do it for very long.
He has 2 sisters both much much younger than him. (2 and 3)
No cousins on either side.
We’ve never had his friends over. I’ve tried to get phone numbers to invite without much luck. I don’t and can’t do the school run as I work long hours with a long commute. So does OH
His mum won’t do anything for his birthday involving his friends as she won’t let him have friends over. Her choice
I can’t do much about finding out the issue as I’m not very involved in his schooling. His dad has gone on the defensive saying ‘this is the last time I invite anyone to anything’ I’ve askrd him to find out but he says it’s close to Christmas they are obviously busy
What can I do to make it a good birthday? Is there something else we can do instead?
Aw poor little guy Could you and his Dad take him out for the day (just the three of you) and make a big fuss of him. Maybe a film he'd really like to see and he gets to pick where he'd like to eat afterwards?
It may or may not be to do with 'popularity'.
I have a friend with twins born in December who used to do a family event at the time of their birthday & then a summer party for the children's friends. Another friend with a DD who has a birthday in December always celebrates with friends in January.
My own Dad's birthday was on Christmas Day - not a bundle of laughs!!
That seems odd to me.
Could it be that it's something to do with his Mum?
Firstly you sound like a lovely SM.
Secondly my now grown DS was that child in primary but in secondary he made good, genuine friends that he still has today ( mid 20's now)
Poor guy! Second the suggestion to do something as a family and make a fuss of him.
My DH's birthday is in December and he always ends up doing something very small as so many people are busy. My brother had a different tactic - his actual birthday passed more or less unacknowledged and he always celebrated his "half-birthday" in June instead.
I used to have this problem when my DCs were younger. Their DF used to have the most fantastic birthday treats for them - such as meet McFly or pool parties at their own pool.
There were always some parents who - understandably - didn't allow their DCs to attend because they didn't know him. Of course, it could also be that 16th December is peak Christmas shopping/party time so it could just be timing.
It is sad.
Out of curiosity, how does your stepson feel? I only ask because your post says that you're sad but not that he is - some kids are less bothered about birthdays than others.
I think he is very lucky to have you as a step mum
Speak to his teacher, make a call to the school and ask for him/her to phone you back. They’ll know best what he’s like in school, if he spends time with anyone in particular. I think at this age, children do quite a lot of activities on the weekend, that, coupled with Christmas outings, may be clogging up their time.
Here’s the thing SS didn’t seem bothered. But I don’t think that’s right either. He has never been invited to a birthday party, never had friends over at Home (his mums choice) we’ve tried the birthday party twice and failed both times. I just remember fondly growing up and going out on my birthday with friends and he hasn’t ever had that. We never get knocks at the weekend can ss come out to play - non or that
I put on the invites my mob (oh not allowed his mobile at work so couldn’t answer) and said more than happy for the parent to contact me for a chat about it all. (Just to show I’m not some sort of weirdo) and that they could come along to watch (with these snozones there’s a cafe that overlooks the slope)
I don’t think I can contact the school it would be properly overstepping boundaries
I think we will do a film and dinner (thanks to who suggested that-sorry I’m on my mobile and can’t scroll back up) and I’ll continue to try to get playmates for him in the new year.
Ah that's a shame. I'd be upset too.My eldest DS struggled with friends at primary school. He wasn't 'cool' or into football and didn't seem to fit in. He joined cubs and then went on to scouts which helped a lot and he made some friends there. Won't help with the party situation, but may be worth considering going forward.
Poor little man, DSS gets mucked about by his 'mates' and it makes me so sad for him, it's worse because he pretends he doesn't mind.
As for the school- If they are like the one my DSC go to they probably won't talk to you, only a parent.
Can his dad speak to school and see what their policy is for children who struggle with social issues/friendships? Some schools are more proactive about providing support but if your SS's school haven't considered him for this they wouldn't suggest it.
In my area there are groups for children who have these problems. They are arranged by the local autism group and have meet ups on Saturdays for the dc to get together to play games, etc under adult supervision with assistance and support on hand.
I appreciate you haven't said anything about autism, I only mention it as it may or not be the cause behind a child's social struggles but either way, you will be looking for the help your stepson deserves. It doesn't matter whether he has a diagnosis or not.
The pattern of his being excluded for years is really upsetting. Not even coming to his birthday parties... so mean.
We have a boy like this in DS class, but he's actually a really horrible boy. He's the class bully and is unbelievably nasty. He's broken DS's rib, pulled clumps of his hair out and left shoe marks on his back when he stamped on him.
His Mom however things he's the second coming and can't understand why he doesn't get invited anywhere or why no one goes to his parties.
Could your DSS be like this?
Obviously not as bad as this boy OP, but could he be bullying in other ways?
He’ll find a group of friends at secondary. In primary you’re lumped together with 29 others and left to it. At secondary he’ll form friendships over shared interests.
Ah no definitely not a bully. His reports always come back and say he’s a chatty boy (so much they have moved him to the front of the class in front of the teacher to stop him chatting) so no no bullying etc. He had some trouble with a boy last year sometime as the other child wasn’t letting him play with the other children but that was sorted at school and we haven’t heard anything else. So no I don’t think it’s that.
His mum may be the issue (she smokes at the school gate and didn’t have a lot of education, (sorry not sure how to put that politely) she left school at 15) but if people are judging based on his Mum then I’m inclined to think that’s their issue and don’t take it out on him.
OH had a parents evening with the school last week and they didn’t mention any social struggles but I will ask him to message the teacher. He is doing this head in the sand ‘la la la there is nothing wrong’ thing.
I hope he finds his feet at secondary and we live close to the secondary so hopefully he will see friends more.
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