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Awkward party invite situation- wwyd?

(116 Posts)
bobblehead Sat 23-Mar-13 21:17:10

Dd2 will be 6 in a couple of weeks. She has invited around 8 children (from class of 22). We slipped invites into bags on Monday.

Dd chose all the guests. She's been talking about who she wants to come for weeks and it changed a fair bit week to week. One girl, I'll call her Betty, was pretty consistantly on it. Dd went to her party in October and she seemed to be one of the children mentioned a lot. Then as we were finalizing the list dd stopped mentioning her. I asked if she was invited, dd said not. No fall out or anything, just didn't want her there. I double checked before sending out the invites as I felt bad dd had been to her party, but dd was adamant Betty was not invited.
Today dd was it another girl's party, as was Betty. As we were leaving Betty's mum cornered me and very nicely said she'd heard dd was having a party, and she wasn't trying to make things awkward, but her mum had picked up Betty from school on the day of invites, so she wasn't sure if Betty should have one or not? She said its fine if not, she just didn't want to not reply if invite had been lost.
I couldn't face saying no, she's not invited, so just said, well dd did the list, I'm not 100% sure who she picked, I'll go home and check and email you if you should have one. Now I feel terrible!
So, should I A) email and say sorry, Betty is not invited B) not do anything or C) make dd invite Betty and email saying gosh, just found Betty's invite lying around, good thing you mentioned it!!!
Was I wrong not to reciprocate the invite in the first place?


notactuallyme Sat 23-Mar-13 23:02:49

Its such a minefield! I've stopped with the reciprocating; it always ended up with kids they no longer played with coming along, and limits on their actual friends.

I have a fairly good idea of who they are properly friends with; they always come, but when I did a class party last year, it was so ds had fun on that day with his class, not so that he could go to 30 parties this year.

Saddayinspring Sat 23-Mar-13 23:03:31

How many are invited?

ProphetOfDoom Sat 23-Mar-13 23:05:22

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

bobblehead Sat 23-Mar-13 23:05:41

I don't think it will look too obvious if I invite her now. There are two Bettys and one is a family friend so I gave that invite direct to her mum. I would be quite feasible dd could have put the invite in the wrong Bettys bag (except it was me to put invites in bags but Betty's mum doesn't know that). I'm thinking she must really think there has been a mistake or she would not have mentioned it to me as it is a bit awkward and I don't know her well...

bobblehead Sat 23-Mar-13 23:10:06

9 from class are invited. One of the girls had a party last month that dd wasn't invited to (and girl was not subtle with invites, then told dd she was invited just to come anyway!) so we had the "can't invite everyone" talk. Dd fine with it, which doesn't help with explaining to dd she should invite Betty so as not to hurt her feelings as it feels a bit like going against everything I said...

MrsSham Sat 23-Mar-13 23:11:32

I don't think it would be awkward and if it is questioned just say, look I'm really sorry. Dd chose invites and with hindsight I think that she was maybe a little hasty due to a little bit of friction. But as Betty is aware and you really don't want to leave her out it would benefit both girls if Betty came to help reinforce the friendship.

Saddayinspring Sat 23-Mar-13 23:12:43

Ok then leave it as long as as an adult you don't think your dd actually really likes this Betty and may want to get together ... Could be awkward if so.

Saddayinspring Sat 23-Mar-13 23:20:00

It happened to one of my dses once... He literally thought he was bf with a particular boy .really loved him. Other boy had been over to party and sleepovers etc. then other boy had party , invited all other boys in group but not ds. There are only 8 boys in class and six were going. Ds was gob smacked.. Turned out in the end there was no reason, just had to draw the conclusion that ds thought he was a much closer friend and valued his friendship a lot more than the other boy valued ds.
It was quite hurtful and turned out also other boy wanted to be friends with ds other close friend and become more in with the crowd,
Never been the same friendship since... If you disrespect and hurt people's feelings they will remember.

bobblehead Sat 23-Mar-13 23:21:49

Also mum has been very involved volunteering in classroom all year, and every "celebration" each child gets a little bag from Betty with a pencil, sweet and stickers inside. I really have to invite don't I?

TomArchersSausage Sat 23-Mar-13 23:21:54

If this is likely to turn tricky, invite her. 'Find' this missing invite invite and explain the 'you'll never guess what happened...two Betty's etc' version and just invite her. Ok it's a white lie but it'll spare everyones feelings and it'll no longer be on your mind.

Having said that I dont think it's necessary to reciprocate invitations for childrens parties every time. If that were so there'd be whole class parties for all eternity. Then whole office parties at work as an adultconfused You have to scale it back at some stage. Also I do believe in allowing dc to choose who to invite.

But this could get awkward and smoothing things over now will make for no awkwardness in the playground later. Although it's good to encourage children at this age to be a bit discreet about their parties, it's hit and miss when they're excited.

bobblehead Sat 23-Mar-13 23:24:03

Betty's mum is good friends with the mum of another girl who is invited which I'm assuming is how she knows. Don't know if Betty is even aware yet.

Saddayinspring Sat 23-Mar-13 23:27:32

Well are they actually friends in the same group? Will it be obvious? If so invite her . If there are lots of girls in the lass not invited and they are not friendly no need to invite.
I wouldn't e mail tho, just say nothing. Too awkward.

bobblehead Sun 24-Mar-13 00:03:02

The class doesn't seem to have groups that I'm aware of. They all seem to play well together I think. Dd is quite quiet and tends to stick to bff Betty all the time. I think to not invite will just not be worth the years of awkwardness I'm going to go through with Betty's mum, even if she is ok with it. I will bribe dd into inviting if need be!

BackforGood Sun 24-Mar-13 00:05:00

Seriously, I think with the answer you gave, you created a situation where there needn't have been one. All you needed to say at the time was that you'd told your dd she could only have a small number, and then let her choose who that was to be - made some comment about how they change who their best friends are more often than their socks, and how you are sure they will be best buddies again by next week, and leave it at that.

Only on MN would people suggest you keep a tally of every child that invites your child to a party, and then somehow adjust your plans, ignore your finance and all other circumstances to invite each and every one of them back. hmm

bobblehead Sun 24-Mar-13 00:16:20

I know I should have, I just didn't have the heartblush

Just to clarify, this Betty has never been her best friend (that is a different Betty!) dd just went to her party and mentioned her a few times. They've never had "playdates" or the like.

LittleEdie Sun 24-Mar-13 02:38:00

The other mother should be able to understand that kids change who they are friends with all the time and it's no big deal. So long as your daughter isn't taunting Betty I don't see the problem.

She buys each child a gift from her DD on all their birthdays?! Is she over invested in children's parties?

GwendolineMaryLacey Sun 24-Mar-13 16:33:53

Having children over for tea/play is reciprocated without question. Parties you invite who your child likes and your budget allows. Trying to reciprocate leads to madness.

ll31 Sun 24-Mar-13 16:48:28

Think you should have invited kids whose party dd went toas matter of course, rude not to

exoticfruits Sun 24-Mar-13 16:54:11

It however isn't possible to do so if someone has 30 to the party and you never have more 10 max!

BackforGood Sun 24-Mar-13 17:41:56

ll31 try and seriously think of the logistics of what you are saying.
If your birthday is in June/July August, it would mean you - the birthday child - wouldn't get to choose who came to your birthday treat / tea / party shock. In what world would that be right ? confused.
Then what about the September child... do they have to "carry over" everyone from last year, or do they get the privilige of being the only child in their class who actually gets to invite just the children they are friendly with that month to their party ?
Some loons people choose to invite 30 ish children to their child's party, so your child would have been included even if they weren't a particularly close friend. Some loons actually enjoy hosting this kind of party. How is refusing to let your child go, because you know you have more sense will only be having a smaller 'do', actually benefitting anyone... your child, the birthday child, or the party host ???
Some people already have a good handful of children to cater for, before they get onto classmates (siblings, half or step siblings, maybe close cousins or similar) so they don't have the capacity to invite so many from school as other children do.
Your logic doesn't work in reality.

Tailtwister Sun 24-Mar-13 18:11:27

We had a whole class party for DS's 5th this year. We did it for several reasons.

1. DS couldn't decide who to have.
2. There were lots of parents I hadn't met due to us collecting at different times and it was a good way to meet them.
3. I hated the idea of leaving children out and just thought it was easier to invite everyone.

We had a few decline, but most accepted. I'm sure there will be a few parties of those who did attend which DS isn't invited to. That's fair enough, I didn't invite everyone simply to get reciprocal invitations. Next year he'll have something smaller when he starts to make particular friends.

Personally OP, I would just invite this girl unless you're DD is likely to comment that she wasn't invited in the first place or would exclude her at the party. It sounds as if the mum just wanted to check she hadn't missed the invitation.

Timetoask Sun 24-Mar-13 18:23:16

Personally, I always reciprocate. I would only consider not doing it if the numbers got out of hand.

bobblehead Sun 24-Mar-13 19:27:25

Well, I emailed Betty's mum last night saying I'd checked the list and Betty was indeed on it so should have had an invite. I apologised for the mix up and for not being able to give an on-the-spot answer, but as dd had changed her mind a few times I wanted to be 100% sure. I hope it doesn't look too obvious.
Dd was not happy but I explained the reasons and bribed her with something cheapblush. She has been instructed not to mention it to anyone.
No reply from Betty's mum.

To all those who say they always reciprocate, what do you do if this is going against your childs wishes? It seems sad that they should invite someone they are no longer keen on at the expense of someone they may enjoy playing with now?

Saddayinspring Sun 24-Mar-13 19:38:06

If they have had a genuine falling out and their is mutual lack of friendship rather than just not top of the list I might not invite back, more often they just have other people they prefer to invite but I think it is something they should learn that if they were happy to accept the invite then they should reciprocate out of good manners.

MrsSham Sun 24-Mar-13 19:46:58

I think that is very good of you boblehead, but don't get to caught up in the reciprocating. Just let dd enjoy birthday celebrations.

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