Post # 1
So this question doesn’t have to do with kids and weddings. It more about kids and social life and maintaining friendships. There been a bit of blow up which ended in a big conversation/debate that lasted hours between several friends and I. So I host pretty popular brunches/dinners at my house especially during the spring/summer months. Several times I have stressed it was an adult event, and yet multiple friends have shown up with children. Well I finally am fed up with this, at my last few events that were adult only rather then get annoyed; I just opted to not invite those people. Now a friend has hurt feelings over it. I responded, I’m sorry you are hurt over it, but you and several other friends have been rude and disrespectful by constantly bringing your children to events that they weren’t invited too. At this point I will still host things that you bring your kids too, however if I am having an adult event prior history has taught me to just exclude you and other certain parents who are going to bring their kids regardless of what I say. I think you should turn down the invite or get babysitter.
Now I understand Parents don’t have as much free time, and can’t have the same social life we non parents do. However I listed off how many events we have where children are present, add this to adult events when they aren’t invited were brought anyways by their parents, and it a long list. The thing that annoys me about it is that most of us non parents are doing all of the compromise and most things we do now involve kids.
However it’s annoying that certain parents never ever compromise, I find it hard to believe in the span of a year there isn’t a few times you can leave your kid home with the other parent,a babysitter or something. The fact is there are other people with multiple kids who manage to do it. If I can attended kids events, dinner and other acitivies with your children present, hell I’ve gone to this friends houses to have coffee and help with laundry just to stay in touch in her.I’m used to thier kids always being around. After they have kids things change as they should! However it still doesn’t make sense to me even after this conversation why they feel people should always have child friendly events? I don’t have children, and I’m enjoying the fact that I don’t right now. So why must I constanly be making changes for them when they aren’t even my kids to begin? The fact of the matter is you choose to be a parent, and with that come sacrifices which means you can no longer attend every event or have the same social life. It just doesn’t make sense to me to constantly be taking your kids to events not intended for them. I just don’t get it? Thoughts on this? Or maybe someome can explain to me in a way my friend couldn’t.
Post # 3
Well, my cousin hosts a “ladies night” about once a month, and it starts at 6pm. If I can’t find a sitter, I do not go. It is clearly an adult only party, and I would feel rude if I brought my daughter.
She also hosts (more frequently) children allowed parties which I also go to.
As long as you do make a point to know their children and host both kinds of parties, I don’t see a problem with it. Sometimes you want to do/say things tat are not kid friendly, and I appreciate the heads up, personally. Maybe explain to your frind that it is not a personal attack, raher you enjoy adult parties that are not apropriate for kids to see.
Post # 4
That’s honestly too bad that you had to explain your actions to your friends! I think it seems pretty straight forward and things have certainly changed in the last five years or so with parenting where everyone seems to assume that the child automatically comes! I have dealt with this as my children are older, and am beyond sitter years.
I honestly don’t think any parent realizes how much your social life changes, especially those who have little family close by. As much as those people want to continue to be a part of your life, I am sure they also do not want to pay a sitter so they can have brunch with friends. I think what is most interesting is that none of them simply step up and have a family friendly brunch once a month and have all over!
You are being extremely gracious, and again, sorry to hear it blew up like this.
Post # 5
Thats a really tough situation. When you say kids are you talking about babies under 1yr, or older kids? I can see it being tough for a new mom to leave a baby at home particulary if she is nursing or just not ready to leave the baby with a sitter. With older children I think there are definitly events that are not child appropriate, and in general she should find a sitter or not come. Its so hard to say without knowing the specifics, I have some friends who bring kids becase they honestly can’t afford a sitter.
If this is an important friend maybe you can find a compromise? My parent’s used to chip in with a few other parents for the annual super bowl party and 4th of july event, and have a sitter come to the party. She was usually responsible for 4-8 of us, they would designate a kids room, usually with a tv and some movies, board games cards etc, and a few snacks. So we were “at the party” but not running around in the middle of the adults. Even if you decide to stick to the no kids rule, I would avoid telling her you just don’t want them there. Point out that your home isn’t childproof, people may be drinking and not watching out for the kids, nothing there for kids to play with etc. For a parent the child is the center of their world in many ways(and rightfully so), so hearing concerns about something being appropriate is a lot less abrasive then hearing they just aren’t wanted. I hope everything works out between you and your friend.
Post # 6
This friend in particular has several young children, her youngest son is a toddler. Again even if she had a newborn I understand why she wouldn’t be able to come. My feeling is I already comprimise much more then she and my other friends who are parents do too. Why should I be constanly obligated to be making consessions for thier children? I host the party and pay for it expect no one to bring anything or help me, so I feel like I can set the guestlist.
While I’m sorry her feelings her hurt, I don’t understand why she can’t see her previous behavior with these kids at my events have been rude. She would just show up with them last minute and not even acknowledge that they aren’t supposed to be there or aplogize. I don’t feel like I should be walking on eggshells. The truth is I just don’t want them there and I’m wondering if perhaps the issue is I’ve never been blunt enough or honest enough with this so their parents could understand. Saying my house isn’t child proof, or making other excuses which she and others have previously brushed don’t work. Which is why I just be honest. Having the kids there just changes the atmosphere of the party, not always in bad way it’s just different.
Post # 7
It really just comes down to how much you value the friendship with her. We all have our flaws and it sounds like this is something you either decide to be ok with because you are friends, or decide its a dealbreaker and you don’t want her around. As a parents shes probably never going to agree with you about how important it is to include her kids, and that ok.
Post # 8
@LovelyLaura: I don’t even think OP should be required to throw children-friendly events. I only plan on throwing events that are not appropriate for kids and will attend events with kids but don’t have any interest in throwing any. OP is being more than accommodating.
Post # 9
See that’s the thing I agree with you she is never going to agree with me about including her kids, whiich is fine. However I don’t plan on changing my behavior that just how I am going to operate from now on, after this has been going on for years. As afriends there is a give and take and in this situation I’m the only one who is constantly giving. I don’t feel like I’m asking too much of her, and I don’t feel it’s a friendship ending move. I’m just agreeing to disagree with her, and issuing invites for those things where I won’t care or be annoyed if she brings the kids along. I don’t get what so “mean” her words about me doing that.
Post # 10
I think we all feel a little upset/angry when we feel excluded from something whether it is a justified reaction or not. Give her some time, let things cool down and see how it goes. Her gut reaction of “thats mean” may be more about feeling like you don’t want her around then an actual response to what you said to her. I know that at times if I’ve felt excluded I can fall right back into that “middle school awkward pre-teen” who was sure that not being invited to something meant that everyone hated me and was talking about me behind my back. Then I cool down realize I’m not 12 anymore and get past that.
Post # 11
From what you’ve written, it sounds as if you’re doing quite a bit to maintain relationships with your friends who have children by planning and attending child-friendly events. That some of these parents continually insist on bringing children to other events that are for adults only — when the children were clearly NOT invited — is inappropriate and impolite.
Post # 12
There are some parents who are permanently attached to their children and can’t see the need to separate. Some parents devote themselves so fully to their children that it ends up interfering with the rest of their life. It’s like moms who can’t also be a wife.. My mother had that problem.
I’m not a parent, but a full-time nanny so I get exposure to lots of parents all day, every day. Maybe your friend takes this personally, as a comment on liking/not liking her kids..
IMO, I don’t think you fault them for trying to be the best parent they can but I do think that you can set your own boundaries as far as allowing the kids to be part of YOUR life. Which you seem to be doing, even if it is hard..I give you major kudos.
Post # 13
I myself am pretty much a new parent, so I can see both sides of the story here. I love my child but most definately need “grown up time”. This friend, she may not have the resources or want to be seperated from her children.
My DH and I are pretty much in the mindset if not appropiate for children if we can’t find a sitter we don’t go. Now my BIL/SIL take their young children every where… I tend to roll my eyes at that. And they should know better since they also have a 17 yr old…
Post # 14
Just to be clear, you’re upset that your friends are upset that you don’t invite them to adult parties/events anymore?
You just have to tell them point blank that you would love to invite them if they don’t bring their kids. Add too that it’s not that you don’t love their kid, this party is not appropriate for kids and you can’t accommodate that. If my friend told me that, I would decide either go without my kid or not go without hurt feeling.
Post # 15
I understand your frustration, OP, and I think you’ve been more than accomodating toward your invitees. If your friend can’t return the courtesy, then she shouldn’t be invited to adult-only events. As long as you’re polite about it, you’re not accountable for her reaction. I’m sorry this issue is creating a chasm between you and your friend; hopefully she’ll get over herself and remember how fun adult-time (sans kids) can be. Good luck!
Post # 16
@Nat_can: It seems the OP *has* told her friends that it is adults only; they just didn’t listen.
OP, I think you’ve made very reasonable concessions for your friends. Maybe you should suggest to them that they hold their own events and they can invite both adults and children.