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My child is the only child not invited to this party

(62 Posts)
Ginda Thu 18-Oct-12 20:00:20

DS (11) is in year 6. He is one of 6 boys in his year at school (v small village school). One of the others, T, is having a birthday party soon. As background, my mum looks after my 2 DCs every day after school and T and his sister also go to her house after school until their parents get home (all kids are over age 8, the parents pay my mum for this).

So, T gives DS an invitation to his party today, which is actually an invitation to tea at his house AFTER the party activity, which is laser quest. T says to DS "I'm sorry but I can only have a certain number of people to laser quest so you can't come but to make up for it you can have 2 pieces of cake".

DS realises from classroom chat that all of the other boys in his year group HAVE been invited to the laser quest and he is the only one not invited.

I am livid. This is not the first occasion on which DS has been the only boy excluded from a party, which I think is completely unacceptable in such a small year group. He has generally been socially excluded at school and I have regular contact with the head teacher about it. It makes my heart ache for him because he just wants to be part of the gang, but he isn't.

On this occasion it feels particularly brutal as this child is in my mum's house with DS every day after school. Given that his parents are completely dependent on her for cheap childcare, I wouldn't have thought it would be that much of a stretch for them to just insist to T that DS must be invited.

I am fairly sure that what will happen when my mum conveys her displeasure to these parents is that they will then extend the invitation to DS. I don't know what to do then. Gut feel says that as T stated quite clearly to DS that he was not invited to the activity, DS should not go where he isn't welcome just because the parents later realise that they have shot themselves in the foot somewhat. On the other hand, DS is so desperate to be included that even though he recognises the truth of the situation, he would probably seize the chance anyway.

What would you do in this situation?

23balloons Thu 18-Oct-12 20:10:18

If they invite him and he really wants to go then let him. Unfortunately, Laser Quest is really expensive & I limited the number my ds could invite when he had a party. He left a boy out and I though it was unfair so I offered to pay for an extra place if he invited this particular boy but he was adamant he wouldn't invite him & if I paid for an extra place he would choose someone else. This is obviously a very awkward situation & I wouldn't allow my child to leave one child out of 6 out but some parents dont think of it like that. It happened to my ds once & the mother of the other boy was my best friend. I actually took it so personally I stopped speaking to her, when she wanted to know why she was really upset and hadn't even though anything about her son leaving my ds off his small party list. Some people just don't think about it the way others do.

I hope it sorts itself out. Sounds like you need more boys in your school!

budgieshell Thu 18-Oct-12 20:12:25

There is not a lot you can do. You can't insist on being invited. It is heart breaking to be the one left out. It seems like you are being sent a message, the question is why is there no invitation? He is being excluded for a reason.

ABatInBunkFive Thu 18-Oct-12 20:22:37

So he is fine for their son to be around every afternoon when it suits them but not fine enough for a party invite, hmm on your behalf.

Ginda Thu 18-Oct-12 20:36:01

Thank you all. I think ABatinBunkFive has picked up my real point: I would be upset for DS just to be the only one excluded but the real issue is the fact that this kid spends 3 hours a day after school in my mum's house, his parents rely on my mum completely for childcare, and yet they think it acceptable to allow their son to leave my DS off the list. It's a group of 6 boys, not 10 or 15.

Incidentally when it was DS' party he had laser quest and we invited all the boys.

SHRIIIEEEKPoolingBearBlood Thu 18-Oct-12 20:41:28

But presumably the boy invited who he wanted to? Without feeling obliged because of childcare - would you want him to? It seems like the parents are aware of the social implications and so have invited him afterwards for cake.
Actually that was what I PLANNED to say but just realised your ds is the only boy not invited. The childcare etc is a red herring, that in itself is totally not on.

Frontpaw Thu 18-Oct-12 20:44:22

I'd be sorely tempted to say 'goodbye childcare then' but of course you can't do that!

Because its such a small class, you can't really kick up a stink. I'd arrange something more intersting to do on the party day, so that he can't go anyway.

Does he get on with the other kids? Is it all school friends going, or are some of the places bagsied by cousins, kids or parents pals etc?

Brycie Thu 18-Oct-12 20:45:12

Oh I am so sorry for you and your son. Yes I would be livid. I'd never leave a child out in those circs - in fact the very fact he's at such a tiny school would make a minimally thoughtless person extend an invite. What a horrid mum. Don't buy him a present I hope.

MarianForrester Thu 18-Oct-12 20:46:58

I think it's absolutely horrible. They should have invited your boy, or maybe not had this type of party.

Don't know what to do though. This happened to my dd, but without the after party tea invitation; am still fuming, heart wrenches for her, cos I wouldn't do it.

Brycie Thu 18-Oct-12 20:47:52

Actually if he does get a late invite and he does want to go, let him go and don't buy a present anyway. Very poor behaviour.

FamiliesShareGerms Thu 18-Oct-12 20:48:05

I hate kids parties!!! Either everyone is invited, which costs a small fortune, or it's a selective list and someone is left out. Which is why I haven't decided yet whether DS is having a party this year or not.

OP, I'd try to separate out the fact that your mum provides (paid) childcare for T. That's a side issue really. The fact he's the only boy in class left out is really mean, but I don't think you can force children to want to be friends or invite certain children to their party, sorry.

FamiliesShareGerms Thu 18-Oct-12 20:49:26

x post with Shriiieeek

Alfiepants Thu 18-Oct-12 20:53:18

I think it's disgusting. As adults you'd expect more sensitivity or at least an explanation if it were down to money only because its such a small class. I feel so badly for your son. I had ten years of the same thing at school and it has left me with terrible scars. Do you have to keep him at this school?

TheProvincialLady Thu 18-Oct-12 20:57:55

How mean and - if nothing else - stupid of the parents to allow this. What can you do though, except live with the knowledge that they are horrible people and be thankful that your son is moving to a bigger school next year where he will meet more people and make friends.

OldBagWantsNewBag Thu 18-Oct-12 20:58:31

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lilyloo Thu 18-Oct-12 21:11:09

I would arrange a day out for him and maybe take some none school friends.
I agree they should invite who they want but to leave one child out is horrible.

Ginda Thu 18-Oct-12 21:42:51

Thanks all. I'm not glad to hear similar things have happened to others but it makes it seem slightly less personal.

It's not a money thing. The family in question have plenty of money and the cost of one child at laser quest is only £8 extra.

I completely agree that you cannot force children to be friends and shouldn't necessarily feel compelled to invite whole class, but in this case the year group of boys is only 6 boys! Even if it were 10, I would not agree in leaving only one boy out.

When it was DD's birthday a few months ago, the daughter in this family accepted the invitation and a few days later told DD at school that she would come to the activity but then her mum would collect her early as she'd been invited to another party on the same day that she wanted to go to as well. I rang the mother to check this and expressed surprise that the invitation had been accepted if the child had another party to go to, whereupon the mother obviously realised what it looked like and said it was a mistake and of course her daughter would only attend DD's party after all.

I have grown to hate the way DS is always at best on the periphery at school and have chosen a secondary school for him that none of his current year group will go to, so he can have a completely fresh start. Unfortunately he has developed a self-image of being "the unpopular one" and so I am quite concerned that this will become self-fulfilling at secondary school. I just want to scoop him up and make him feel better but I can't.

Whoever said your schooldays are the best of your life was wrong!

marquesas Thu 18-Oct-12 21:48:55

Your poor son, it's awful when your children are left out isn't it.

Would your Mum be prepared to have a word with T's mum to see if she can find out why your son has been excluded without letting on that you know about it of course?

visualarts Thu 18-Oct-12 21:56:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ginda Thu 18-Oct-12 22:24:30

marquesas my mum rang this evening to say she had called the mother and the mother had said that it was a mistake. They had left it to the son to put the pre-printed) invitations into envelopes and give them to his friends. They had had 2 separate pieces of paper - one inviting to the house for tea and one inviting for the laser quest (why would they do this? In what universe??). Their son had obviously forgotten to put the second piece of paper in DS' envelope.

I said to my mum: all very well apart from the bit where the boy expressly said to DS on handing over the envelope "you can't come to laser quest"!

I knew the parents would come up with some BS excuse like this when they realised their childcare might be at stake. But I will now have to let DS go because of course he wants to.

visualarts, I have tried to get DS into other stuff outside school, but with minimal success for other reasons. His dad and I are divorced, dad lives miles away, insists on having the kids for 2 weekends out of every 3 from Fri-Sun, which means they are hardly ever at home at weekends to do stuff with friends/pursue activities. I have another thread on this topic at the moment as am gearing up for a battle with exH by telling him I want alternate weekends (which he will go apeshit about).

Brycie Thu 18-Oct-12 22:26:09

Great, let him go and don't buy a present. I'm so mean but they were so mean to your child. I hope your son enjoys it smile

Frontpaw Thu 18-Oct-12 22:29:33

Mind he doesn't shoot the mum in the arse with a laser. Accidentally.

Ginda Thu 18-Oct-12 22:31:48

grin frontpaw!

saintlyjimjams Thu 18-Oct-12 22:32:21

It might be a genuine mistake, you know how gormless year 6 boys can be.

DS2 was one of only 2 left out of a party - he didn't seem that concerned, I think I was more concerned (wondering what on earth he'd done to be left out!) but they then seemed to make up and he was invited. He can't go anyway. :rolls eyes:

I do whole class, no-one left out, or very small select group. Anything else is too difficult.

FamiliesShareGerms Thu 18-Oct-12 22:36:06

Brycie, that is mean! Surely either he accepts the invitation with good grace and goes with a present etc, or the invitation is politely declined?

OP, I don't think that these parents should feel beholden to your mum for providing childcare, it doesn't seem very healthy (I'm not saying that they have behaved well by initially "forgetting" the invitation). And I'm a bit sad at the other posters who have suggested that your mum should stop providing childcare for them in some kind of revenge for the party snub.

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