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Inviting a Muslim friend to a 'party' - advice please

(8 Posts)
OddBoots Thu 02-Jun-11 17:37:38

ds has Asperger's and struggles socially so his friendship group is small and he has not wanted many parties but one of his friends (S) has politely declined to go to both of the parties he has had. I am not sure the reasons for declining although I do know that some Muslim families prefer not to attend parties.

ds will be 12 this summer and would like to invite 4 friends (including S) to lunch at Pizza Hut with him, the plan is that I will drive them all there then sit on another table while they eat (then pay!) and drive them home.

I was thinking it might be a good idea for me to write to S's mum and dad asking if he may attend with us, I know Pizza Hut meat is not Halal so I thought I could offer to make sure S only had vegetarian food and I was wondering if I should offer to wear a head scarf and modest clothing for the duration. I have seen S's parents about and smiled and said hello across the road on the school run to his mum many times

Does this sound okay? Is there anything else I should offer to ensure other than the usual giving of contact details and agreeing timings?

lljkk Thu 02-Jun-11 20:36:36

I think the best thing is to approach the mum directly -- talking to her telling her how much your son wants her son to come along, and how much your willing to accomodate any concerns they might have. I'm foreign & my experience of Muslim people in the Uk is that most of them (like me) do not have the British reserve; they may have a tendency to keep to themselves to avoid trouble, but otherwise they appreciate directness very much and friendliness as much as anybody.
It may not be her decision, though, it could be Dad's, and he may still feel it's safer not to mix. But see how it goes.

OddBoots Thu 02-Jun-11 20:58:59

I should have mentioned that the reason we only smile and wave is that the mum doesn't speak English, the dad does but I'm not sure it would be right to approach him.

Slambang Thu 02-Jun-11 21:08:00

I think you sound very lovely but you're way over thinking. You absolutely do not need to wear a headscarf to avoid offending their ds. Wearing a head scarf or not is a personal choice due to your beliefs. Politeness does not mean you have to copy the clothes of someone with different beliefs - that almost sounds patronising.

And talk to the dad if he speaks English, he wont be sent to hell for talking to you.

Hulababy Thu 02-Jun-11 21:19:30

If mum doesn't speak English, speak to dad. I do this at school with the children in my class (I am a TA) and it is fine to talk to dad, honestly.

Firawla Thu 02-Jun-11 21:25:17

I would definitely still invite him, if he has to say no then he has to say no but atleast he has had the chance. You don't need to wear headscarf or anything like that, they wouldn't expect it from you and would be a bit OTT i think. If the mum doesn't speak english can't your ds speak about it directly with his friend, and friend would be able to pass the message onto his mum about what he has been invited to? or speak to the dad but depends how strict they are whether they will be comfy with you talking to the dad?
Do you know if that boy has been to any other parties or just none at all?

Selks Thu 02-Jun-11 21:28:53

The headscarf idea is OTT; Some Muslim women cover their heads out of personal choice but they would not expect you to. The main issue will probably be the food. But maybe the boy just isn't keen on parties!

OddBoots Thu 02-Jun-11 21:45:00

Thank you all, very helpful. smile

I think I will need to talk to his dad as it's always going to be tricky getting information via my ASD ds, especially as S has learning difficulties himself.

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