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to decline this invitation

(12 Posts)
CrackersInBed Tue 25-Aug-09 22:52:43

Right, dt's godmother is someone dh used to work with but doesn't anymore. Frankly it was an odd choice with hindsight, but she is lovely, just not really a close friend. We only meet up every 6 months or so, because we are all so busy with our families. We speak and email a bit inbetween and have lots of awkward "we must meet up" chats which rarely lead to anything.

A few weeks ago she and dh were talking about a work thing and she invited us to lunch this BH Monday. Tonight she called to check we are still on, but now it is a bit of a general party for their very large extended family and a few friends. There'll be about 40 people there - we will know nobody except godmother and her hubby and kids who are in their 20s. There will be no other children there at all. Everyone else there knows each other.

I am not put out that lunch has turned into a bigger party - that is no big deal, I am honestly not offended or something. But I do not want to go because I hate going to things where I don't know anyone especially as dh is as socially inept as I am. I am sure, from experience, that basically I will set up camp on a corner of the garden with dd, who has SN, while dh tries to mingle / play ball games with ds to keep him occupied. I will spend the day being over chirpy and jolly trying to occupy dd with an "isn't this lovely being here with all these lovely new people" air which I just hate.

Am I over-reacting? Also how do I phrase this to the hostess without backing her into saying "NO NO of course you muct come, you will be very welcome and everyone will make a fuss of the kids" etc etc which would just then make me feel even more awkward.

bigchris Tue 25-Aug-09 22:59:01

it's not allday though, just lunch
so just stay a couple of hours
unless you have something else to do i'd go, you might enjoy it and ds no doubt will even if you, dh and dd don't

SomeGuy Tue 25-Aug-09 23:06:11

YABU, you know the hosts and I'm sure they will introduce you to others

CrackersInBed Tue 25-Aug-09 23:06:21

But this is a 90 minute drive away and also now it is a BBQ with some team games afterwards so it's a long way to go and then bugger off so soon, and we will be the only ones who leave so soon and might just look very weird don't you think?

luckylady74 Tue 25-Aug-09 23:10:41

I'm with you actually - I havea ds with sn and parties where noone knows us or our family set up are hard work and in no way relaxing.
If dh is supportive of lying I would go with a non specific illness eg I have dodgy tummy, dd has bit of a temp - may be swine flu so can't commit to coming.

I am a fan of white lies to spare upset - some people may tell you to be honest - that would be the right thing to do in many ways. Put it all on yourself if you are honest eg I'm sorry I find parties such hard work with looking after dtwins,I'm no good with new people and I'm terribly sorry to back out but lifes quite tough for us at the moment. Then ask if you can arrange a date for just you.

It's not odd at all to only see godparents every 6 mths- I haven't seen 1 godson for 2 yrs as long way away, which is frankly more than I see half the people I invited to my wedding!
Good luck

CrackersInBed Tue 25-Aug-09 23:17:28

Luckylady thank you - I was starting to feel that i have lost my mind. DH just says oooh it will be fine but then he lives in his own world and doesn't notice any social awkwardness and is also oblivious to dd's needs half the time ( but that's another thread.....). I just always feel that I am under a spotlight at such things. i want to blend in and disappear but that is totally impossible so i feel there is a sign over my head saying LOOK AT ME SAT HERE ON MY OWN WITH DD PLAYINg SODDING DOLLIES. And I do also think - what is the point of being there if we can't actually really join in anyway?

I like the idea of putting it on me and saying I don't think I can cope - feel better with that than an all out lie. But I still feel like a bit of a moron having talked to her tonight for 20 minutes and sounded all upbeat and chirpy, which is just my default setting when faced with constant daily scenarios which I think will be hell but have no choice over.

raffyandted Tue 25-Aug-09 23:30:18

Oh no, YANBU. We are just like you and your DH, both DH & I feel a bit overwhelmed when having to go to things where we don't know many people. These situations are the worst as you've already committed to going, but now the whole thing has changed into something you probably would have turned down at the start.

Know just what you mean about the default chirpy setting, I do it whilst inwardly thinking, 'oh no, i don't want to do this' but my mouth is saying 'oh, how lovely, what fun, blah blah...'

If you have the courage to be honest, go with luckylady's suggestion. But I'd probably tell a white lie, then spend hours berating myself for it.

CrackersInBed Tue 25-Aug-09 23:36:48

Oh I just can't win. I feel like an over-reacting two-faced nutter if I pull out, not to mention that the kids are looking forward to it so i feel bad about that. But the alternative is 6 days of dread and an uncomfortable day which I could do without. Am off to bed now - maybe this will all become clear in the morning........

luckylady74 Tue 25-Aug-09 23:38:24

You don't want to go and I imagine you are busy and tired so don't go.
I have twins and a child with sn and have yet to go to a party where I sit down,have a drink and catch up with people/meet new people.
When there's supportive family/friends and a veery small group then I can, but that's not really a party is it!
I have faith that at some point I will go to a party, get a bit pissed and relax like I did few years ago and so will you crackers smile

saintmaybe Tue 25-Aug-09 23:55:47


You can tell her, we'd love to see you, but with the kids we find we don't really get to have a proper conversation when it's a big group. Can we do it (xx weekend) instead? Can't wait to see you and catch up!

It's fine, really.

I have a child with sn too, btw, and I completely know what you mean.

CrackersInBed Sat 29-Aug-09 13:50:51

Thanks everyone - I stewed for a few days and called her today to explain why I didn't feel able to go - my heart was beating and I was really anxious. Ridiculous really.

Anyway i explained how diffucult I find these things, no little white lies or anything, just the truth of how hard it is and how I was really stressed just thinking about it.

She was lovely and said she understood perfectly and she said she would call me next week to tell me how it had gone and fix up something else more manageable. I am sooo relieved!

I too hope that one day soon invitations will be a nice thing and not just a source of angst and stress.

NanaNina Sun 30-Aug-09 11:55:54

There you go Crackerinbed - you made the right decision and your friend did not dissolve because you were honest! Congratulations on telling the truth - I think we could all be more honest in these situations. It seems that the first thought is to make up an excuse and it is so easy to see through them anyway! I don't think we should do anything that is an ordeal for us and if that seems selfish then tough. We all move to a different "beat of the drum" and what is a pleasure for some is a nightmare for others. The older I get the more disinclined I am to accept invitations where I think I will be uncomfortable etc.

Your friend sounds lovely to be so understanding. As she had so many people anyway it wouldn't really have made a great deal of difference whether you were there or not I suppose.

Many years ago I worked with a woman who was always trying to get people to go to her amataeur dramatic performances and I used to listen (with some interest) to the excuses and the way in which people used to struggle not to offend her or even tried to avoid her. One day she approached me and I just said "Oh no thanks........I am not really interested" - she was fine about it and never asked me again and I learned a valuable lesson in being honest in a polite way.

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