As she went on to explain, she reveals how she has seen parties where parents in the past decided to drop off an extra kid “without considering that not all the children were invited.”
“Sometimes more than one parent does this and honestly I think it’s selfish,” she wrote. She did note that while it may be okay if the parent makes arrangements with the hosting family in advance but most of the time, it comes out of left field.
“Who would say no to a child?” she wrote. “After all it’s not their fault.”
And when it comes to telling other parents her feelings about them bringing extra kids to birthday parties, she has never been one to back down from setting that boundary.
“It’s the parent who has no regard for arrangements that gets to me,” she explained.
And given the current pandemic, part of why this mom decided to keep her daughter’s 10th birthday party limited was for health reasons.
“We thought to take the kids to a craft party where each child gets a pre-chosen crafting pack to work with for the event,” she explained. “This worked out as the kids could have fun while social distancing.”
In addition, it was as a prepaid party, “so any extra children would be unpaid for and would not have their own crafting kit,” she explained. “This fact was heavily emphasized to the parents and not a word of discontent was uttered.”
But despite the perfect planning, one parent decided to drop off an extra kid at the party. The OP then explained to the parent how they had prepaid and only had enough craft kits for the kids who RSVP’d and not siblings. The parent then asked if the two kids they brought could share a pack and the OP then told them it was not fair to the extra child they had brought if she said no.
“I was not given a reason other than [the extra child] was upset they couldn’t go,” she recalled.”I stuck to it and firmly told parent that [the extra child] could not come,” she continued. “I still stuck to my decision when [the extra child] threw the biggest tantrum, parent made no move to calm but instead blamed me for saying no and ‘all the other parents always let both children attend.'”
The parent ended up taking both kids home and the OP was just as annoyed as this meant the child who’d RSVP’d wasn’t going to stay, despite her already paying for that spot. Another parent at the party who witnessed the exchange commented on how the OP should have let the extra child stay.
“But I feel teaching my children the value of your word and sticking to it is more important that sparing the feelings of a child and parent who should know better,” she added. The mom asked if she was in the wrong “for not letting the sibling attend the party.”
One user responded with a question of their own:
“Who brings a child to a party to which they’re not invited is the better question?….I would NEVER assume that both kids could go to a part where only one was invited and would never ask that my other child be invited to a party either. I’ve had parents offer for my other son to come – sometimes I’ve taken them up on it, others not. But they OFFERED, I didn’t demand!”
While another user commented:
“I feel this. I work as a teacher and I have experienced parents picking their children up 45 minutes – hour after the bell rings because they think I am an after-school program. When the child is in elementary school, I’m not leaving them, but it’s not my responsibility to look after them because mom and dad didn’t pick them up.”
What do you think? Comment below!
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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