Post # 1
wondering where to draw the line for first birthday party guest list: would love some insight on what rule of thumb other parents have used…
do we invite close friends without kids?
Do we invite friends with kids who are older (4-6 years)?
Do we invite family that doesn’t live that close to us but whom we are close to and will likely drive up for the occasion?
I don’t want anyone to feel obligated to attend since it’s probably going to be a few hours given her nap schedule but at the same time, I’m conflicted since it’s our child and the friends in question are close to us. I don’t want anyone to get offended either. Help!
Post # 2
I drew the line at people who had met our girls, otherwise the party would’ve been out of control big. Almost all of our friends are childfree and a good amount didn’t come over to see them so that cut down the guest list quite a bit. As it was I think we had around 30 people, too many. This year it’ll be just family. That first birthday is a fun one though!
Post # 3
wanderlustmama : My thinking is that a first birthday is for the parents, not the child. So you invite people who are close to you, the parents. I don’t see the point of inviting less close friends just because they happen to have kids a similar age.
That said, we had very low key first birthdays for our children. We invited our immediate families only (but that included the SIL with young kids).
Post # 4
aussiemum1248 : I totally agree with this.
OP, I’m not a parent, but for what it’s worth, I recently attended the first bday party of my best friend’s son. I was happy to do so, and I love seeing my friend and her baby and giving them gifts. I think it’s appropriate to invite family and friends who are close to you, regardless of their own situation with kids/no kids. That might change as your child gets older and the parties become more kid-centric.
But I also don’t think people would be offended if you decided on something more intimate, with just family members.
Post # 5
no one came to our sons first birthday or 2nd or 3rd… honestly until school/pre-school age no one except the parents care – maybe get a cake and plan something like a trip to the zoo or somwhere nice, but dont expect much of others its less disapointing/heartbreaking
luckly at that age the kid is unaware of what a birthday is and doesnt care if people come but as an adult its upsetting when you plan a party that means so much to you and everything goes wrong
Post # 6
You have a 1-year old. How many people can you feasibly host without going crazy? I would have invited immediate family (though in our case they are all out of the country) and it still would have been a big deal trying to put the food on the table, keep our daughter safe and fed – she was walking at that point – I don’ t think I would have had time to eat anything myself. I say: do what you are comfortable with. For us, we went for ice-cream and a ride on the caroussel after I picked her up from the nanny and had cake for dinner at home.
Post # 7
I’m trying to decide that now too. I think we will be inviting LO grandparents, aunts and uncles, 1 cousin, and a few of our friends (probably 5 total) and a couple of their LO. For a total of under 20 people including the kids.
Post # 8
I’m inviting local family (around 8 people) and a couple of my daughter’s friends and their parents.
Post # 9
Thanks everyone. You’ve all raised very valid points.
I guess I should clarify and say that in my circle of friends, we tend to make an effort to attend baby showers and kids first birthdays and such even if they are not nearby. So if we invite those friends from out of state, they will probably make the trip up for the day to attend. It’s not about being disappointed. It’s about me not wanting to offend anyone. Also, also to clarify since maybe I wasn’t clear – I wouldn’t even consider inviting anyone we weren’t close to even if they did have a kid our daughter’s age. The people in question are close friends who’ve been major part of our lives.
i like the idea of cutting it off at people who’ve met her before. It’s definitely more for us so it’s going to be mostly family and close friends and a few of the babies she’s had a lot of playdates with and their parents since we all know each other well enough at this point.We’d probably still end up with about 40 people but we are going to have it at home after her naptime and get it catered and order the cake and decor etc. I’m not cooking or making any decorations so I’m not too worried about the logistics.
Thank you to the non parent for your insight. This was definitely something I wondered!
Post # 10
wanderlustmama : first birthdays are for the parents – invite your friends regardless of whether they have kids or not as long as you want them there and think they would want to be there too. As someone who doesn’t have kids yet I’d be heartbroken if I was excluded from my close friends’ kids parties because I love the kids too!
Post # 11
wanderlustmama : I’d be offended if I was your close friend and wasn’t invited just because I didn’t have kids. A lot of times nonparents (even if it’s by choice) end up left out of things just because they don’t have a child and it sucks.
Post # 12
I have a very close group of friends and that all grew up together and the couples hang out often and the men were all each other’s groomsmen. I was offended and upset when we were not invited to someone in our circles child’s birthday but other friends who they were equally close to in the circle were invited because they only invited friends with kids. One couple invited had a baby That was months old who wouldn’t even know they were at a birthday party but they were invited bc they had a kid ! So setting arbitrary cut offs like “we’ll only invite people with kids” was silly and hurtful in this instance. Although my husband and I haven’t gotten around to kids yet by choice I couldn’t imagine being a couple trying for a child and not being invited for not having one yet. This was also a child we were very close to and see quite often who’s bday it was. I feel like if you can host everyone then just invite them all and if they can or want to be there they will, if you can’t host them all then do it by social circle, never by the age of their kids or lack of kids. Its not their fault they had kids earlier or later than you! However if the same people kept this party to family only and super close friends I wouldn’t have been upset.
Post # 13
This is really personal preference and there is no right or wrong. We just had my daughter’s godfather, friends of my parents and then the rest was my siblings and their kids and we just had a cake over at my dad’s (my mom passed). But that’s just me, some people invite like 80 people, which is fine if that’t what they want to do.