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Dd desperate for a birthday party but I've got severe social anxiety and the very thought of it makes me panic. Any ideas please?

(13 Posts)
jitt3rbug Wed 10-Oct-18 17:41:59

This is long but trying not to drip feed!

Dd1's 6th birthday is early January. She is desperate for a party and has been asking about it for months.

She is in Year 1 and started at the school in Reception last year. We've never had playdates but she has did go to one party last year, a school friend's. We've only ever held birthday parties with our families.

We moved here nearly four years ago and have no family in the vicinity. Husband has work friends and the odd night out with them. I'm a SAHM. I've failed to make any friends here and have let my long-standing anxiety and depression issues sort of envelop me, to the point where I rarely leave the house other than to do the school drop off and pick up. I let my few friends from back home drift away, thanks to the anxiety.

The school is in a fairly tight-knit village, with most of the parents in the playground already in cliques thanks to village groups and activities, church etc. We don't live in the village and don't attend any of these.

I still don't know anyone to have a conversation with in the playground.

So, if you've made it this far (thank you smile ), my question is does anyone have any suggestions for dd1's party that doesn't involve the very scary prospect (for me) of having to socialise with a group of people (the parents, not the kids!) for the duration? Dd1 only wants to invite a few friends which in a way makes it scarier for me as there's nowhere to hide in a small group!

I'd rather not hold a party at home as we inadvertently bought a 'project' and so I wouldn't feel comfortable thanks to the state of the house (replastering, decorating etc) which won't be finished by January anyway, and I'm not sure where I'd squeeze everyone in.

Any ideas for a very socially awkward mum please?

Sorry again for the long post.

OP’s posts: |
jitt3rbug Wed 10-Oct-18 17:46:06

*Sorry, cut a few waffly bits out which refer to dd2 (aged 2) and newborn dd3, hence me talking about 'dd1' towards the end.

OP’s posts: |
Seeline Wed 10-Oct-18 17:51:32

If she only wants a few guests, I would suggest an activity of some kind. Perhaps cinema followed by pizza, or pottery painting, or trampolining etc. The kids will do their own thing and parents might be happy to drop and go.

ileclerc Wed 10-Oct-18 17:51:57

In year 1 the parents drop and leave round here - literally chuck them in and run away at the prospect of two kid free hours. Is there a soft play type place where you could have it, then you won't even really have to deal with the kids apart from food / cake time?

noenergy Wed 10-Oct-18 17:53:05

I would suck it up and just have a party for her. I didn't know anyone in DS class last year when I sent out invites and everyone came and it was a nice way to meet everyone. I brought my best friend for back up.

Maybe at age 6 the parents won't stay so u won't have to sit and make small talk.

Something like soft play, trampoline or a swimming pool party would be good

ilovetvandchocolates Wed 10-Oct-18 17:53:27

At that age most parents want to drop off and run, most parents I know hate parties and will feel the same way as you do!
Don't worry about your house, kids do not care, balloons and banners hide a multitude of sins!
Or an ice skating party or anywhere where you won't have to host, it'll be the venue that so all the work!

KennDodd Wed 10-Oct-18 17:55:14

Can your husband host the party somewhere and you not go? Say you're not well if anybody asks.

Better still, try to face your fear. Maybe ask for RSVP by email and tell the other parents about your social anxiety in the email reply. Most people are nice and will be supportive and you might not feel you have to put on such a brave face?

EssentialHummus Wed 10-Oct-18 17:55:32

I agree with cinema. I’m sorry you’re battling like this OP, it sounds very difficult flowers.

PerspicaciaTick Wed 10-Oct-18 17:58:14

Either go for a small, activity-based party where parents will drop and run or go for a whole class party in a hired hall where you can busy yourself with food and party bags and not have time to mix.
Will your DH step up and act as host while you do that actual organising?
I'm hugely socially carp and find children's parties fine as the organiser doesn't have time for chatting (and I get on OK with the children).

PerspicaciaTick Wed 10-Oct-18 17:59:01

That was meant to say crap not carp..sorry.

user1471451866 Wed 10-Oct-18 18:03:12

I agree that an activity would be easiest, if adults do stay you will be busy so won't have time for small talk. I assume with the toddler and baby it might be just you and dh has them? It depends what is local to you, and your budget, but bowling for a small number, with a burger or pizza, or cinema. Build a bear type places, not full on party, but couple of close friends and follow with pizza? Is there a local theatre with something child friendly?

daisypond Wed 10-Oct-18 18:04:31

Early January will be panto season. Could you take a few to the pantomime or a children's theatre?

AllSouls Mon 29-Oct-18 10:48:40

Everyone hates hosting children's parties, OP. Agree with the soft play or activity ideas -- my son is year 2 and trampolining is popular, also bowling. In Year 1 there were a lot of soft play parties.

And go easy on yourself. I don't have social anxiety and am a fairly socially confident person, but I have made no friends at all in this village in the six years we've lived here, despite doing all the right things -- my kind of people just don't live here. My friends have all been made through work, which I realise doesn't help you, but sometimes people can be a poor fit with a place and it's no one's fault. DS is sociable and I do facilitate playdates, though it's difficult with two FT working parents in demanding jobs with long hours.

Important I think not to pass on your anxieties to your child, so I would try to find a way of working on yours.

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