Birthday party this weekend...(28 Posts)
My ex and I have been separated for just over 5 years, divorced for 2. I have had a new partner for 2.5yrs, he has had one for a year. We have two DS's 10 & 5. The youngest has a party this weekend which I have organised and paid for. ExH has bipolar disorder and is very up and down, during one of his, 'up', times when we got along he agreed to do games with the other Dad (it's a joint party) however, for the last 3 months he has been very anti me to the point where he's blocked my number and I am, 'allowed', to send one email a week detailing what the boys have been up to and that I have his parents (he lives with them) number in case of emergencies. He said I was sending too many texts with regard to the children (three a week?), hence he blocked my number. He says he will only phone if our eldest son is allowed a mobile to which I've said no, I have a mobile and we have a landline. He's been a bully for the last three months and really difficult about absolutely everything to do with the children. He sees the boys EOW. Up until about three months ago we had an amicable relationship, he would come in for coffee and we would chat about what the boys have been up to. He has admitted his DP is, 'funny', about me.
All the games have been organised, food has been booked, party bags bought. He asked last weekend when his partner and her eldest son could come (he's 12) I said on this occasion no because everything is booked and our eldest son already has a friend going. (my partner and his sons aren't going) but next time of course. I have met his new partner once, for about 30 seconds. She seems to think I am bitter and jealous. I'm not. I then get an email last night saying, 'We're all coming to the party, if you don't like it that's your fault', she has four children from 9-14.
It's going to be really awkward and I'm just not sure how to act. Just be happy and smiley? blank them? She must know I don't really want her there yet she is still choosing to come? I wouldn't if the shoe were on the other foot? I'm worried about how the boys are going to be, it's meant to be a birthday party and the atmosphere is going to be crap...
I think the fact that you have arranged and paid for this party makes their insistence on coming against your wishes very rude - they must know how stressful it's going to make things if they come. 4 older children coming to a 5 year olds' birthday party is also a bit odd, I doubt they're that bothered about coming!
Presumably your ex has another opportunity to celebrate your DS's birthday with him? Is this his actual birthday?
As for what to do about it....I'd try and rise above it if you can. Be happy and smiley and give the older kids jobs to do - maybe they can help with the games? Don't give your ex's DP any ammo...keep your side of the street clean etc.
I do think you're within your rights to say "that is fine but the food has been booked so please bring something for your DP's children and the same goes for party bags". They're too old to expect a party bag at 5 year old's bday party anyway really though. My older children have no difficulty understanding that if I have to take them to a bday party one of their younger siblings has been invited to, they can't expect a party bag!
I can not imagine the 14 YO is very happy about being dragged to a 5 YO party??? In fact my 10YO DSS would not want to go to a 14 YO party? Maybe his DP is giving him a hard time and he is dragging the poor kids along to present a completely unnecessary front?
You could just say after reflection you would rather none of them be there.
Is it buffet or a meal - can just see the look on the 14 YO face when you ask if he wants chicken nuggets or kids pizza for his meal and is squatting on little chairs
Where is the party? Is it a place where they can pay for themselves to get in or have you booked something that is only for the party guests?
If they are coming then I would say your DP and his children could come if they wanted.
Pity the poor 14 year old who has to go to the party! I can only imagine the rows beforehand.
Sanity - that's EXACTLY what I thought! all the kids being called to the table for food (it's sausage, pizza, chicken nuggets etc and chips) and they have to sit on tiny chairs?! and you're right I think his DP is giving him a hard time.....
Crossroads - His actual birthday is the following weekend (on ExH weekend) but he is away golfing in Spain instead... and I'm of the same opinion, 14 yo at a 6 year olds party?!
Dueling - We've hired a hall and the Dad's are doing a football party
Imperial - Thank you, my DP's boys are 9 & 11 and to be honest I didn't invite them as I didn't think they'd be that into it! DP isn't bothered about it, apart from the fact it's going to be awkward for me. I just thought it would be the ideal opportunity to put on a united front with ExH for our son with no significant others there, but obviously he has other ideas
Ah tricky, though at least if it's a hall it means no extra cost for you apart from food?
No, but I'm loathe to pay for her children after he hasn't contributed a penny towards any of it, I've booked and ordered the food and he's given me 4 days notice? Am I being out of order?
No, I don't think you are.
When we have parties for my DSD it's always been on the premise that both parents split the party costs for all of DSD's (mostly school) friends and then if we want to bring extra children from our family / friends we pay for them and the same goes for Mum.
Thanks crossroads. He must have told her that I'm not keen on them all coming, yet she still chooses to come knowing it will cause an atmosphere. I just don't get it....
I don't think you are but I wonder how you are going to stop it from happening?
Do you think he is waiting for a response?
In fairness it may not be her as such it may be that she wanted to come but your ex thinks it is easier to get a pass if he brings the kids as well.
If they are coming send out the menu choices and ask for the money by say Thursday.
FWIW my (sometimes not so) DH used to use me as an excuse to his ex for taking a swerve on certain things (this was 10 years ago in the very early days when we first got together) until his ex and I got into a bit of an argument over something once and it clicked into place. Needless to say that was put a stop to e.g she asked him once to pick up some ketchup from the shop for her after work and pop it in (DSD had it with everything), he told her he couldn't because I had asked him to do something when actually he just thought it wasn't important but couldn't be bothered to get into a row about it so used me as a scape goat.
Certainly if they all come then your DH and his kids if they want should.
Send him and email telling him how much money he needs to bring to pay for them all.
I think he probably is but all I've responded so far is, 'Are you actually contributing to this party?'
I'm tempted just to leave it as I think that's what he's waiting for, a narky response and to be honest I don't want him thinking he's, 'won', at getting me wound up again...
Sorry I only saw Dueling's response!
Sanity - OMG you could be me!
Mythical - Very tempted to do that too...
I wouldn't pay for her children. I'd tell him not to bother coming.
Tequila - tried that but it seemed to have made him all the more determined to come...
This happened to me. I just said 'Great, I'm sure all my mum friends (who he knew) would love to meet your new DP', surprise, surprise, she didn't come after all
I would send a message breezy message back replying " ok they are welcome to come but you will now have to put your hand in your pocket as I'm skint - it will cost x amount"
What an idiot!
I would say 'I am not going to turn my sons 5th birthday into a battlefield, if you insist on behaving like this then do so but I am not paying for food/drink/age appropriate entertainment for older children, you will have to do that if you wish. I would also remind you that your son is just 5 and doesn't deserve you or your girlfriend making a scene in front of friends, my family and neighbours. He is so excited about his birthday, all I care about is that HE has a nice time. I hope that you can find it in yourself to put that at the top of your list of priorities, just this once'
Elastamum - Brilliant!
Queen - Thank you, those are exactly my thoughts but (and I'm not sure if it's his mental illness) but he doesn't seem to care about the boys feelings or what they want (even though they think the sun shines out of his backside) it's all about getting back at me? SO frustrating!
Oh god what an awful father he is. I think PP have nailed it and the older children are being forced to come.
I would send this:
Just to clarify this is our sons 5th birthday which I have not only paid for but have spent weeks organising. You have contributed nothing yet you are and always were welcome to attend. However your GF and her children are not. My BF and his children are not invited either which you have known about for some time.
I am asking you NOT to turn our sons birthday into some sort of power trip by gate crashing with people that were not invited and have not being catered for.
If you have issues with me then I am more than happy to work through them with you but I don't think our little boys birthday party is the place to do it.
Sadly OP if he just turns up with them you will have no choice but to slap on a smile for the sake of your son but I hope it doesn't get that far.
For me if you give in on this and allow his GF and her DC's to attend then your ex will just see it has a green light to railroad you whenever he wishes. He won't like this but he has left you no options other than to be firm.
Let us know if it all goes ok OP
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