Would you be upset if your child was not invited to a Birthday party?

(36 Posts)
Trumpette Mon 07-Mar-16 16:07:43

DC had their party after school on Friday and invited half the class. The children have been talking about it today at school and one particular child commented that everyone should stop talking about it and it was rude because he had not been invited. I explained to my DC that it is impossible to invite everyone as numbers were limited and that whilst you need to get along with everyone in your class (like work colleagues) it is ok not to like everyone too!

I thought we were quite reasonable and I am aware that my DC has not been invited to every party either! I am aware that this particular child's Mum has been ignoring since invites went out a a few weeks back. I cannot understand why adults would be upset by this as surely you don't expect your kids to be invited to everything?!

What do others think?

OP’s posts: |
Leviticus Mon 07-Mar-16 16:23:19

I've only been able to let DS invite half his class to his party as the venue can't take 30. I know that he hasn't been invited to every party either and why should he have been? It's not a problem to me but I might be hurt on his behalf if I thought he was upset about it. I'd still think it was fair enough though.

If the mother is really upset with you because of this - and you're not imagining it - there's not a lot you can do. Smile and carry on.

Runner05 Mon 07-Mar-16 16:24:58

I think some parents get precious about their darling little flower being left out.

Maybe the child was upset he hadn't been invited and told his mum and she's got upset on his behalf instead of explaining to her child that he won't be invited to every party and unless he's a particular friend of the person holding the party he shouldn't take it personally.

I wouldn't worry about it, it will all blow over. At worse your son won't be invited to parties or sleepovers by the other child.

Wolfiefan Mon 07-Mar-16 16:25:14

If you invite all the class except one child then that's hurtful. If you invite half the class or even less then what's the problem.
My kids aren't invited to every party. They're not close friends with everyone in the class.

Spandexpants007 Mon 07-Mar-16 16:26:28

Some adults are just plain stupid and precious about their child not being invited to a party.

Yes the children will chat about it at school and yes the chatting children should be a little bit considerate of others feelings.

HexU Mon 07-Mar-16 16:49:54

If you invite all the class except one child then that's hurtful. If you invite half the class or even less then what's the problem.


Past reception is just wasn't possible with the venues - sometime our house - other times expensive things the children asked for to invite 30 + children.

Some children and their parents unfortunately do push to get invited and are best ignored.

yes the chatting children should be a little bit considerate of others feelings.

Other than tell your own children they can't be invited to everything when they don't get invited and ask the above they they try and be considerate I don't see there is much you can reasonably do.

Obviously I hate it when my children get upset about none invites and make it as all right as possible but I do understand and most parents do.

mrsvilliers Mon 07-Mar-16 16:50:12

I got upset about DS (4) not being invited to a party. The little girl in question danced up to him with a pile of invites and informed him he wasn't invited. I was more irritated by her behaviour until I found out she had invited the rest of the class (over 20 kids) at which point I was a bit hacked off. Even more so when she continued to try and exclude him from activities as he 'wasn't invited to my party'. DS completely oblivious btw. But if only half the class had been invited then no, I wouldn't.


user789653241 Mon 07-Mar-16 17:25:40

I had a really awkward moment once. We are heading to the library one Saturday morning, and we saw a boy from his class packing up the car to go somewhere. He came to me and said, "I really wanted my ds to come to his birthday party today, but Mum said he is busy, can you make sure he can come next year?", in front of his parents. He was never invited. And we weren't busy, since we are walking around the town!

bojorojo Mon 07-Mar-16 17:29:37

I think it depends if the child gets a fair number of invitations or is always left out. Mine fell into the latter category and I never really new why. Plenty of children came to her parties but the invitations back were rarely given. A few friendly parents would say to me,"See you at the party tomoorow" and obviously I had to say my DD was not invited. At times people were very surprised.

In the end we gave up and decided only a small number of lovely children were worth our effort (actually I now think it was more to do with parent friendships concerning the others) and we just invited a handful of children to very special birthday events. Far less aggravation than a party for 20 plus. She was only in a class of 22! When people did invite 20 and leave my Dd and one other out, I can honestly say I was very upset for her. It does feel horrible being left out all the time. Of course I understand people cannot invite huge numbers all the time, but it felt like DD had no friends and, unfortunately, she wanted and needed friends - still does!

In the end, she suddenly became popular in year 6. She was then a curiosity for the snobby parents who wanted to quiz her on why she was going to boarding school instead of the local grammar school. (To make new friends and get away from them!)

IsItMeOr Mon 07-Mar-16 17:34:58

What you did was fine.

Trumpette Mon 07-Mar-16 18:27:12

Thanks everyone! X

OP’s posts: |
sportinguista Tue 08-Mar-16 06:47:44

I think it's fine. FWIW my DS only gets 2 invites to parties a year in his class as most children are from a culture where birthdays are only within family. It was hard at first but he is used to it now. We do an outing for his birthday and a little get together with a couple of mates as his birthday is in middle of summer holidays.

If you'd left out just one child it would be odd but half the class is just on numbers and who his friends are.

Chalk2000 Tue 08-Mar-16 07:05:28

You do feel for your child when they don't get invited to something. If she was the only one who had not been invited this would be wrong but there will be others not going too.
children. have to learn that they won't get invited to everything in life,,,

If It was my child id just say oh well how about we go off and Do this instead etc ...go somewhere nice

RonaldMcDonald Tue 08-Mar-16 09:19:50


AnnaMarlowe Tue 08-Mar-16 09:24:00

I'm quite happy for my children not to be invited to something. I'm also quite happy for people to invite one twin and not the other.

I do instruct my DC not to discuss their own parties in front of people who weren't invited though as that is rude.

Happymummy007 Tue 08-Mar-16 09:41:07

In a class of 20, half of which were girls, our DD was often the only one left out of invitations. We would see all the other girls on a Friday evening going off for this, that and the other party whilst we were going home. This is despite us inviting all of these girls to our own DD's party. In the end she (successfully, and very happily) moved school.

If your child is the only one left out then I feel it is utterly unacceptable, and leaves you feeling angry and confused. However, in a larger class I think it's absolutely OK to invite only half - it's not something done out of unfairness or trying to exclude someone, it's often merely a case of venue capacity or how much these things are going to cost. I think you've been very reasonable and wouldn't worry about it.

lljkk Tue 08-Mar-16 09:53:30

It was painful when I thought lots of parties were happening & my kids were rarely invited to any.

AuntieUrsula Tue 08-Mar-16 10:47:16

It's not wrong to invite just half the class and being excited about an impeding party is natural - but I have found some kids do seem to get a kick out of loudly discussing an upcoming event in front of ones they know perfectly well aren't invited. Either because it makes them feel special or because they don't like that child. I think that is rude and I find it rude if adults do it too.

BathshebaDarkstone Tue 08-Mar-16 10:49:35

Not remotely! It's a bit PFB, isn't it?

PerettiChelsea Tue 08-Mar-16 10:53:31

No but leaving a child out because the parent doesn't want to invite them is extremely petty.
Dd was not invited to an Easter thing & the girl actually wanted dd there but parent said no because she never sees me !! (I'm not in the playground) utterly stupid & so unnecessarily hurtful for dd. She has shot down in my estimation.

BreconBeBuggered Tue 08-Mar-16 13:17:27

Half the class or less sounds fine, but as others have said, it's hard when your DC is never among the chosen ones, for no valid reason that you can make out. Countless times I've stood speechless in the middle of a group of playground parents discussing one of their DC's upcoming party, knowing full well I'm the only parent there whose child isn't going. Spectacularly rude.

Witchend Tue 08-Mar-16 13:43:55

Upset is different from being angry. You can be hurt because of lots of reasons.

Obviously leaving one child out isn't fair-or just one of the girls/boys. But in some ways that's easier to deal with because it is so clearly unfair that you can talk about it and get sympathy or confront.

But you also get the upset of someone you thought was a close friend not inviting, the fact half the class wasn't invited isn't relevant if the child thought they'd be in the top quarter.

And you also have a situation where it is discussed in front of an uninvited child to be nasty. And they're quite capable of doing that at a very young age, certainly by year 1.

There's also the children who are rarely invited to any party.

And you can also have the situation where a child tells a child why they haven't been invited. Dd2 had one child in reception tell her that she couldn't come to their bowling party because she wouldn't be able to bowl, because she only has one hand. It was a child who she wasn't particularly friendly with, and wouldn't have expected an invitation from, but that really upset her.

In the case above I would suggest that perhaps the parents had told the child that they weren't to talk about their party in front of others because it's rude to talk about it if they're not going. Child then repeats it back to the others when they're the one not going. Right lesson to the child.

dairymilkmonster Tue 08-Mar-16 14:10:45

We seem to have so many party invitations that I wouldn't be at all bothered given your specific scenario. I think:
Inviting everyone in the class - only possible with small class and hoping some can't make it
Inviting about 1/2 the class is fine.
Inviting all but 1 child your DC has taken against/ all the girls but 1/ everyone except 1 in a particular group etc is probably not..too potentially upsetting for that individual..I haven't come across that with ds1 yet though.

I have already repeatedly explained to ds1 (4, in reception) that not everyone can be invited to (or make, due to other commitments) all parties. He seems to accept this now. I framed it similarly to when people go to play at others' house after school - not everyone can do everything! A good lesson to learn in life as long as it is generalised rather than personalised.

zoemaguire Tue 08-Mar-16 14:16:13

It's fine - we all know everyone can't be invited to every party - but I can't help feel a slightly sick feeling at the pit of my stomach when my kids are not invited to a party that at least half the class is going to. My youngest son is particularly light on invites, for no reason that I can fathom, and yes it hurts, particularly when it seems like a relatively big party - more me than him, he seems relatively oblivious sad

So nothing you can do about it, obviously, but bear in mind that it's not just 'special flower' syndrome- more that party invites tend not to be distributed equally. It'll tend to be the same 2/3rds of the class that gets the vast majority of invites, would be my wild guess.

zoemaguire Tue 08-Mar-16 14:18:49

And yes it is not just numbers obviously. My DD recently wasn't invited to the party of somebody I thought she was fairly good friends with - repeated playdates with each other since reception (now yr 3), I am reasonably good friends with the parents. It wasn't a small party - 16 kids - so the idea that DD didn't even figure in this child's top 15 friends this year, well...ouch!

It's a minefield.

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