Rant (s/o kid-free showers) — The Bump
Baby Showers

Rant (s/o kid-free showers)

I want to preface this whole rant with the fact that this is my opinion and I know I'm in the minority.  However, I do want to explain a little why it bothers me so much.  

I am a parent.  I parent my child.  This means, to me, removing him when he becomes disruptive, rude, loud, etc.  I am a good parent.  I make it a point to discipline him (even as a toddler) when he misbehaves.  It doesn't matter to me if we're at the mall, the library, church, the grocery store, the zoo, a wedding, a shower, the museum or a TGIFriday's.  If he starts misbehaving, shrieking, screaming, running amok, etc---I remove him from the situation until he calms down.  If I know a situation is not child-friendly or appropriate (a black tie wedding, for example), I will choose to get him a sitter or decline the invite.  This is my choice as I know what is and is not appropriate for my son at his age level.  

Now, I realize that I'm likely in the minority in this.  I know there are a lot of lazy parents out there and it sounds like some of you know some too.  My friends and family are not lazy parents.  I was removed from a grocery store and taken home to my father (while mom went back to finish shopping alone) when I threw a tantrum.  

I learned from these experiences.  I knew what was proper behavior and I knew the consequence of my actions.  I enjoyed going out with my parents and my live-in grandmother.  I have had some amazing and unique experiences as a child, a young adult and an adult.  I know how to use a napkin, the proper way to butter my bread and the right forks to use at a proper place setting.  

We wonder why kids act like fools when parents are discouraged from bringing them out in public during the most impressionable ages and stages of their life.  I think we're doing our kids an incredible disservice to their futures by keeping them home with some underpaid teen sitter while mom and dad go out to a nice dinner.  (Not that parents don't deserve the occasional night out, I love a good date night :-D). 

Do I think that my son should be the center of everyone's world?  No.  I know that not everyone likes babies/toddlers/children.  I don't expect every event to be automatically welcoming children (and specifically my son) which is why I don't always roll my eyes at no-child formal weddings.  However, at a casual party celebrating someones impending parenthood?  If you don't like babies/kids, you should have really thought about not reaching for that condom, no?  

I guess my point (although I've done some serious ranting) is that in my circle it is odd to not have kids invited to functions because we are (usually) very diligent about determining if something is appropriate for a child and if we think it is (such as a shower), we actually do the work of parenting our children once we're there.  It bugs the [email protected] out of me when someone rationalizes not having kids there because "Kids are holy terrors! They will steal your thunder!"  They will destroy the party! etc" because it's not the childs fault they have crappy parents who don't discipline them.   

:ducks and hides from the diaper genies that are going to be thrown at my head:  


 

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Re: Rant (s/o kid-free showers)

  • My showers are not going to be kid free, but sometimes I think adults just want to be with their adult friends and not have to worry for an afternoon about what everyone's kid is doing at that exact second. That is the only way I understand it. I'm excited for my kid inclusive showers!
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  • I agree. Its not the kid, its the poor parenting. All kids will act up to an extent but parents should try to teach their children to behave. I am fine if kids are at my shower but I know some will act up and be bad and that is a shame because it will somewhat disrupt things but poor parents don't care.
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  • Like you, Balls, I went most places with my parents... out to all restaurants, on vacations, etc.  The one time I had a tantrum in a restaurant, we left without eating.  I learned at a young age how to act appropriately given the setting.  I hope to do the same with my child. 

    That being said, I think when it comes to an event, it is the prerogative of the host and guest of honor as to whether they want kids there or not.  It is their party, they can dictate the guest list.  If I go to a shower and DD is not invited, she will stay home and spend a few hours with her father.  If she is invited, that is great too.  There are also plenty of things children are invited to that I don't think are appropriate.  SIL is getting married in October.  It will be a black tie, late night affair with loud music and a lot of drinking.  Personally, I don't think it's an appropriate setting for DD, but, SIL wants her there.  I would rather leave her with a sitter, but she will be going.  

    Whatever someone's reasoning for wanting or not wanting kids at an event really doesn't matter.  This is one of those things that I think is a non-issue and if someone wants to get so butt hurt that their kid wasn't invited, they don't have to go.  When you have a party, you get to write the guest list, if you think kids should be there, invite them. 

    I just think that this is one of those things that there is no right or wrong to, it's just a personal preference. 

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  • Ballsox you have a valid point.  And you are right children can be taught how to behave at a variety of "adult" venues/occasions.  The sad thing though is that these days the way you manage your child is in the minority.  

    I find too many parents (and grandparents) don't discipline their children when the miss behave in a public place.  They tend to ignore it, let it happen like it's no big deal (the whole kids will be kids excuse- regardless of the venue) or will give the warning ("you've got till the count of three..") but not follow through when the kid still doesn't listen.  

    I have been run into, almost tripped and other such run ins with kids left to run wild through the store.  And yet when I gently say "watch out" or "be careful" to the child the mom or dad gives me the evil eye.  My friend also over heard this little gem on a city bus "If someone is in your way just shove them to make them move."  Yep that's the lesson a mother taught her ~6-year-old kid.

    As for not having kids at showers I think it tends to be a regional/social circle kind of thing.  In my area and social group kids are not invited to showers.  The moms love having an afternoon out sans kids.  It also keeps the rest of the guests from having to deal with those kids who don't know how to behave when out at a function like that.  

    I too was taken to a lot of "adult" places and events from an early age.  However, I was also taught how to behave and punished when I didn't.  Will I raise my child to behave and act appropriately?  You bet I will.  But will I feel that not inviting my child to a shower is depriving him of a chance to learn how to behave... no.  Because like my family and friends I will enjoy the afternoon of adult company, sans child. 

       

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  • Are you speaking specifically about baby showers? I am 32 years old (due in 4 days) with my first:)  I have never been a kid-person in the past, but I'm super excited to have a baby, and I know my social gatherings now will reflect this stage in my life.  I threw a shower for my friend (co-ed) so I made it a kid friendly event because I knew if it wasn't some of the couples would not come.  And the shower wasn't about me, it was for my friend. 

     I didn't mind having children at my own showers.. I feel like the "no kids" thing is something that I'm growing out of now that I'm about to have my own child. I like that you point out about not keeping them home "all the time" because otherwise how would they learn to act/behave in certain social situations.  Unfortunately, a lot of parents don't discipline their children and it's not pleasant to have to listen to a child scream/ throw a tantrum in a restaurant/ store.

    Good for you for parenting your children in public!! (no sarcasm here).. I plan to do the same:)

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  • Also, it was discussed (between me and my mom) about not having children at my baby shower.. By then it was too late because people were already bringing their kids (and it wasn't put on the evite that it was an adult only event).  So we just let it ride, and I really didn't mind.  I do feel that when you are invited to an event, you should ask if you can bring other people.
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  • I am enjoying the discussion that's been raised here.  

    I know someone pointed out that it's the decision of the hostess as who is invited and I agree.  I'm just raising the point as to why it's weird (to me) to not have children invited because (in my experience) the children are either well-behaved, the parents don't bring them, or if they come and misbehave, they are removed.   It's not an issue (where I am from) that a hostess would not want children (d/t misbehavior issues) and so it kind of honks me (once again, my baggage, I get it) that someone would so pointedly say "No kids because they are awful".   I completely agree that there are things that a child should not be at and (in my experiences) it's always the parents who say "I'm choosing to leave my child home because this is not a good place for them", not the hostess that says (in essence:  "I don't think your child is going to behave and therefore am not inviting them".  Yes, once again, I realize that it is the privilege of the hostess/mtb to make the guest list and I agree, I'm merely explaining why I find it so weird/rude.

    To the poster who pointed out that she took her daughter to a shower and was miserable, then it becomes the choice of the parent whether or not to take a child with them.  My son has been going to my parents house the last two weekends because of us going to our new house and painting/working.  In the evenings, we go out to dinner and out with friends.  There are times that I love and look forward to not having my son with me.  For example, my husbands CW had a retirement party last weekend.  Between my son already being at my parents house and the nature of the party (large party dinner at a restaurant, drinking, etc) I decided not to bring L.  No less than 75% of the people there asked us why L wasn't with us and made a point to say they missed seeing him.  No one explicitly invited or said he wasn't invited, I made the choice as the parent.  Trust me, I don't take him everywhere, I judge the situation and make the call.  Yes, I realize as a guest, this isn't my call to make for other people's parties and I agree, I'm merely explaining why I find it weird/rude.  

    I'm sure there were other points raised but I don't remember them now.  :-P 
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  • I totally disagree with you.  You may parent your kid well.  I plan to do the same with mine.  But I do not feel kids belong everywhere. 

     Kids should not be the center of the universe and I cannot stand parents who think they should be. 

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  • Oh! I remember now, I realize that the majority of parents out there suck.  They are selfish and lazy and don't want to ruin their good time actually having to parent.  It's easier to laugh at little Timmy pulling all the books off the shelf than it is to put up with his tantrum when you make him put the books back on the shelf or put him in a time out.  

    I teach preschool.  I hear parents threaten things all the time and the kids literally laugh in their face.  Why?  Threats don't mean *** for most parents. Things like "if you don't listen, we're leaving and driving home right this second" doesn't work when you're standing in line at a ride in Disneyland.  (How many times did I hear a parent say something like that? I lost count).  The majority of parents have lost the ability (or don't have the ability in the first place) to follow through with threats.  Parenting by threats does not work.  

    There are consequences to a choice and you don't have to threaten the consequence to be effective. Once a child learns the cause and effect, it's not a threat, it's a certainty.  If you throw food, you're gone from the table.  If you pull stuff off a shelf, you're gone from the store.  If you throw a tantrum when I tell you no, you don't get to come with me.  If you run around inside someone else's house, you leave.   

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    He's the single greatest thing I've done in my life and reminds me daily of how fun (and funny) life can be.  He's turned out pretty swell for having such a heartless and evil mother.  
  • image laurakaz13:

    I totally disagree with you.  You may parent your kid well.  I plan to do the same with mine.  But I do not feel kids belong everywhere. 

     Kids should not be the center of the universe and I cannot stand parents who think they should be. 

     Did you read what I wrote?  I know it's long (hence the rant disclaimer), but I out and out said that I know there are places that children don't belong.  I've also stated that there are times that I enjoy and look forward to not having my son with me.

    If you are to disagree with me, make sure you actually disagree with me.   

    Image and video hosting by TinyPic Little Man (4 years old---holy cow)
    He's the single greatest thing I've done in my life and reminds me daily of how fun (and funny) life can be.  He's turned out pretty swell for having such a heartless and evil mother.  
  • I'm usually on the same page as you , Ball, and while I respect your opinion - I feel there is a little stretch with some of your points. 

    Baby showers are like any other event.  I've been to weddings with and without kids, I've been to adult b-day parties with and without kids there, I've been to showers with and without kids there.  If kids are invited, then its up to me whether I want to bring DS or not. 

    In the end, I respect the wishes of the host/hostess.  I think it's ridiculous that women actually get offended when their kids aren't invited.

    I like to go out on occasion and hang out w/ my girlfriends and actually TALK to them.  At the age most of our kids are at - having our kids there means we don't get a ton of time to catch up.  My son is well behaved and he'll let me talk for a bit - but in the end, he's 3 and when he wants mama's attention, he wants mama's attention. 

     Baby showers where everyone brings their kids - we're going to spend most of our time dealing w/ our kids instead of having a chance to talk.

    That's why it's my personal preference that showers are adult events.  I don't see how not wanting kids at a shower somehow means you don't like kids....???  But I'm also not going to be upset if kids are invited. 

    That being said - we take DS out a lot.  He's in many different environments.  He's been to a wedding with us, we've flown a few times with him, we take him out to eat all the time, we visit friends, we have friends over.  He's learning how to act appropriately in a variety of situations.

    My going out and having some occasional "adult time" isn't at the expense of my son being exposed to various social and life situations. 

     

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  • I love kids.  I have waited long and tried tirelessly to have the baby I am carrying now, but I still don't want kids at my shower.  Most of the people I know don't parent to the level I do (I have a much, much older DD - who I took everywhere she was invited and she behaved).  Including my SIL.  My niece and nephew do not behave.  At DH's cousin's baby shower last fall my niece stood in front of MTB moving all around blocking the view of her opening her gifts.  I kept telling my niece to sit down, my SIL said nothing. 

    DH's cousins also let their kids run wild.  Screaming, running around - it's ridiculous.  I don't want them there - I want to enjoy myself.  I don't want kids in my face while I am opening gifts.  I don't want them "helping" - I don't find that cute and it's hard to tell them "no" when they are bouncing all around you.   

    I don't know that I will get my wish and I get that some people feel completely differently about this.  Like a pp said, I don't think there is a right or wrong here. 

    OP you sound like a great mom, I wish I knew more people like you.  But, given that I know so many who aren't that's how I feel.  And it has nothing to do with how much I do or don't like kids.   

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  • image BallSox:

     (in my experience) the children are either well-behaved, the parents don't bring them, or if they come and misbehave, they are removed.  

    I see your point, and credit you for removing your child when necessary.  But at that point, the child has already had a meltdown and been disruptive.  And if there are 3 kids who get fussy/melt down at the same shower, it's a lot.

    Even kids who are well-behaved are still kids with age-appropriate attention spans and needs.  That means the parent, if they're truly parenting, is primarily paying attention to their child and making sure he/she is behaving, is dry, is fed, is entertained, etc.  And unless that means "napping", there's not a whole lot of attention left to participate in the shower.

    If a hostess and MTB agree to allow kids at the shower, great.  It would be odd to me, as a guest, to see kids there, but it's their prerogative.  That may be misspelled but I worked a 12-hour day and I don't care.  ;)

  • I totally agree that it's rude for people to disinvite kids to any event specifically because they think kids in general are holy terrors, but, for the most part, I don't think that's why people don't invite kids to shower.

    You make a guest list for any event based on who you want to target the event at. Because you take pride in your job as a hostess, you don't want to invite a bunch of people who will have no interest in the activities and whom you have no intentions of entertaining. Also, you often pick a venue and food choices based on the headcount you expect. So if you want to limit your numbers for budget constraintst or just the desire to have a more intimate party, of course you aren't going to invite a bunch of extras.

    My annual work awards ceremony is coming up next month and not only is my daughter not invited, but neither is my husband. And I never took that as an affront like they don't think they can behave. It's just not for them, you know?

  • image EastCoastBride:

    In the end, I respect the wishes of the host/hostess.  I think it's ridiculous that women actually get offended when their kids aren't invited.

    First of all, as much as one can to someone they have never met, ECB, you know I <3 you .  :-D  

    I guess my beef isn't so much that the hostess thinks I can't parent, (even though I previously stated as such) as much as it is that bad parents ruin it for everyone.  I totally feel you on the grown-up time, I do!  I don't hesitate to bring my son to something I want to, but I also enjoy going out without him when it's more appropriate.  (Trust me, I feel you on the three year old thing, I teach three year olds!)

    It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me.   I don't like it when people assume I'm not going to do the right thing just because other people don't.   Personally, I'm not offended to receive an invite excluding my child, because I know (in my circle of family/friends) it's a bigger reason. I know it might be a budget issue, a space issue, etc.  What makes me roll my eyes on TB is when a mtb comes on and it's because "they'll ruin my party"  "they'll open my presents"  "they'll take the attention away from me".  Budget concerns, space issues, I have no problems with these.  It's the "but it's MYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY day!  Those little hellions will ruin my daaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyy!" that makes me sigh.  

    EtFirst of all, as much as one can to someone they have never met, ECB, you know I <3 you .  :-D  

    I guess my beef isn't so much that the hostess thinks I can't parent, (even though I previously stated as such) as much as it is that bad parents ruin it for everyone.  I totally feel you on the grown-up time, I do!  I don't hesitate to bring my son to something I want to, but I also enjoy going out without him when it's more appropriate.  (Trust me, I feel you on the three year old thing, I teach three year olds!)

    It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me.   I don't like it when people assume I'm not going to do the right thing just because other people don't.   Personally, I'm not offended to receive an invite excluding my child, because I know (in my circle of family/friends) it's a bigger reason. I know it might be a budget issue, a space issue, etc.  What makes me roll my eyes on TB is when a mtb comes on and it's because "they'll ruin my party"  "they'll open my presents"  "they'll take the attention away from me".  Budget concerns, space issues, I have no problems with these.  It's the "but it's MYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY day!  Those little hellions will ruin my daaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyy!" that makes me sigh.  

    etFirst of all, as much as one can to someone they have never met, ECB, you know I <3 you .  :-D  

    I guess my beef isn't so much that the hostess thinks I can't parent, (even though I previously stated as such) as much as it is that bad parents ruin it for everyone.  I totally feel you on the grown-up time, I do!  I don't hesitate to bring my son to something I want to, but I also enjoy going out without him when it's more appropriate.  (Trust me, I feel you on the three year old thing, I teach three year olds!)

    It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me.   I don't like it when people assume I'm not going to do the right thing just because other people don't.   Personally, I'm not offended to receive an invite excluding my child, because I know (in my circle of family/friends) it's a bigger reason. I know it might be a budget issue, a space issue, etc.  What makes me roll my eyes on TB is when a mtb comes on and it's because "they'll ruin my party"  "they'll open my presents"  "they'll take the attention away from me".  Budget concerns, space issues, I have no problems with these.  It's the "but it's MYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY day!  Those little hellions will ruin my daaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyy!" that makes me sigh.  

    eta:  I know it may sound like backtracking, but there is a distinction (to me).  I worked a long day and I might not be making full sense, but I really do appreciate the conversations and discussions. 
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    I also think that the decision to invite children to events is up to the host. I had a child free bridal shower and will have a child free baby shower- not because I hate children (I am a special education elementary school teacher), but because I have witnessed firsthand how bad things can go when parents let their kids run wild at these events. My husband's large Italian family doesn't believe in disciplining their kids. I was invited to his cousin's bridal shower a few years ago and was appalled by his niece?s behavior. It was a surprise shower and the girls ran outside and ruined the surprise! They then ripped all of the presents open (their mother thought it was "so cute" how they were helping) and were just awful. When it was time for our engagement party last year we invited his other sister and allowed her to bring her kids. Again, the kids just ran around like wild animals. The oldest one (9 years) kept taking my husband's cell phone and interrupting people's (complete strangers to him) conversations taking their pictures, the middle one asked every 10 minutes when we were having cake, the little one just ran around, and they all fell asleep in the middle of the party at 7. That was when I knew I would never again invite kids to these types of events.

    Yes- there are many wonderful parents who would die before allowing their kids to behave badly in public. Unfortunately, there are parents who believe that their kids should be allowed to do whatever they want and since you can't invite some kids and not others (especially since parents with badly behaved kids seem to be hyper sensitive about their kids not being invited to events) it is easier to just say no kids! My SIL and I are still not speaking because I wanted a child free wedding and her children were not invited!

    My sister is getting married in October and my son is not invited (he will be around 4 months old at that time) and I understand that it's not an appropriate place for him. I would never presume to tell anyone that they have to include my child in an event they are hosting.

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  • I get what your saying and it would piss me off if the host wanted no children because she thought they wouldn't be well-behaved. I'll be the one to decide how my child will behave and if it's poorly, we will leave.

    However, not every "adults only" event is adults only because someone thinks kids can't behave or because someone doesn't like kids.

    Maybe I want you at my shower, but not your kid because I want to spend time with you and talk to you. Maybe I love your kid, but maybe I don't want to hang out with him that day. Maybe I occasionally want to hang out with you when it's just us, not us and your child.

    Or maybe it's my shower and  that's just the way that I want it. Why would it be wrong me of me just want adults at my shower? Not because I want people to pay attention to me instead of kids, but jut because that's what I want. 

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  • The baby shower is to celebrate the MTB not the baby so I see no harm in making it an adult only even.  I've been to Adult only weddings and baby showers and it didn't seem odd to me at all. 

    It's not just about parenting either...a baby could just be plain fussy because he/she may be teething, or maybe they missed a nap, or whatever the reason. You have to know when to choose you're battles, if you can't find a sitter for an adult only event then you just politely decline, it's not you're party so you can't complain about the rules they set.

    On that note my shower will be kid friendly because all my friend's have kids and I love each and everyone of them.  As a matter of fact my BFF's kids call me auntie Melanie.  I was the same way with my wedding, kid friendly, but that's just me.

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  • image EastCoastBride:

    I'm usually on the same page as you , Ball, and while I respect your opinion - I feel there is a little stretch with some of your points. 

    Baby showers are like any other event.  I've been to weddings with and without kids, I've been to adult b-day parties with and without kids there, I've been to showers with and without kids there.  If kids are invited, then its up to me whether I want to bring DS or not. 

    In the end, I respect the wishes of the host/hostess.  I think it's ridiculous that women actually get offended when their kids aren't invited.

    I like to go out on occasion and hang out w/ my girlfriends and actually TALK to them.  At the age most of our kids are at - having our kids there means we don't get a ton of time to catch up.  My son is well behaved and he'll let me talk for a bit - but in the end, he's 3 and when he wants mama's attention, he wants mama's attention. 

     Baby showers where everyone brings their kids - we're going to spend most of our time dealing w/ our kids instead of having a chance to talk.

    That's why it's my personal preference that showers are adult events.  I don't see how not wanting kids at a shower somehow means you don't like kids....???  But I'm also not going to be upset if kids are invited. 

    That being said - we take DS out a lot.  He's in many different environments.  He's been to a wedding with us, we've flown a few times with him, we take him out to eat all the time, we visit friends, we have friends over.  He's learning how to act appropriately in a variety of situations.

    My going out and having some occasional "adult time" isn't at the expense of my son being exposed to various social and life situations. 

     

    Agree 100%.....Also, want to add.... I have a few really close friends that sad to say, do not parent their children well. Their kids are out of control, and honestly, I don't want to have to deal with them at my shower. On the other hand, I have friends who parent very well, and their kids are completely well behaved and I don't mind them being at my shower at all. That being said, it is difficult to invite only some children. Therefore, it maybe easier to just say "only adult event".  

    I'm with you 100% . It is totally up to the hostess and I also do not understand why some parents get upset if invitations are "adult only events". 

  • I've been to plenty of showers where there were kids and for the most part the kids were well-behaved (or rather under strict supervision by their moms).  Unfortunately, it only takes ONE child to be disruptive to ruin the party/shower.  I have 3 kids...and although they go to a LOT of things we are invited to they don't go to baby showers (even if kids are allowed).  I, as a parent, do not want to spend those 2-3 hours parenting my kids instead of conversing with other adult women so I leave them home with a sitter or family. 

    Perhaps the FTM's have been to events where they have seen a child "act up" and that is what they remember and maybe that child DID ruin the shower.  Based on some of the things I've read in this post (that kids have done) I can imagine that happening. 

    Even though your child is disciplined and knows how to behave the hostess can't say OK to you and exclude other people she knows has kids that are not disciplined. 

    I'm not sure it is a matter of not liking kids...although I really don't like other people's kids much even if they are well-behaved.  I appreciate that they are behaved but I don't want to feel obligated to "talk to a child" when I'm at an adult event (and I would feel obligated if a little one started chatting with me).  That is just me though.

    I also think sometimes people's homes are not child-friendly.  My kids know what they can and cannot touch in my home but someone else's child would not know that.  I don't want to worry about something breaking and I also don't want to worry about having to go through my house and remove anything that might be broken by a kid.  Obviously there is a chance an adult could break something but not as likely.

    I'm in the camp of showers and weddings are adult events.  My DS was the ring bearer in my bro's wedding.  My other DS & DD were not invited.  I was upset at first (mainly because all of our normal babysitters would be at the wedding) but got over it after thinking it through.  We were also told the older DS had to leave after dinner.  It just meant my DH also had to leave (since how else would we get him home?).  We dealt with it.  It is what my bro and SIL wanted and it was their day.

  • image BallSox:
    What makes me roll my eyes on TB is when a mtb comes on and it's because "they'll ruin my party"  "they'll open my presents"  "they'll take the attention away from me".  Budget concerns, space issues, I have no problems with these.  It's the "but it's MYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY day!  Those little hellions will ruin my daaaaaaaaaaaaaaayyy!" that makes me sigh. 
    Well, TB is definitely a unique world that often doesn't describe my normal experiences or my friends. :) 

     

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  • image BallSox:

    First of all, as much as one can to someone they have never met, ECB, you know I <3 you .  :-D  

    Oh, and "aw, shucks!".  :)
    "Beer is living proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy."
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  • My reasons for hosting kid free events:

    I'm not a kid person. I love my little cousins and friend's kids but never set out to have one of my own. (Yes, I should  have paid better attention in health class.) Since I'm not really a kid person my house isn't kid proof. I didn't think much about that at first and assumed parents would watch their own kids if they brought them by. That was a horrible assumption on my part. The neighbor brought his just learning to crawl and pull up infant over. He set her down and didn't give her another look. It was up to  me to entertain and keep away from my glass coffee table with all the sharp edges. (I hope that doesn't sound like I was worried about my table. The base is metal swirls and could really hurt a baby)

    My next learning experience was a Superbowl party three years ago. We invited all our friends (some with older kids). Most of our group got married in the last 3-5 years so we are all just now getting pregnant. There is one girl with older kids (7-9) and one girl with a 5 year old from previous relationships. We are watching the game in my husband's shop. The kids want to play Wii in our basement. Mom says it's ok after checking with me. Time passes but Mom never goes inside to check on her kids. DH goes in for some reason and finds them running all through the house chasing my cat. Makes them all go back to the shop. Now they are bored and wanting me to entertain them.

    Next Superbowl a friend asks if it's ok to bring his son. I had to tell him no. I know this kid's son is well behaved but we had to make the decision to not allow any kids because of one person's lack of parenting. 

    This year, life is changing. 7 of us our pregnant. One has a 3 month old. The 3 month old is coming to Superbowl. The couple who doesn't watch their kids weren't invited. Instead of banning all kids I'm not inviting bad parents. 

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  • Lots of interesting points, but I'll make a slightly different one.

    Personally, I apply baby-shower logic on kids like I do my husband: men aren't always invited to this kind of thing. I'm not offended by it, I get that he might not enjoy it, and even if I'm a good wife and make sure he's on his best behavior, that can still be draining on me ;)

    Having him there does change up my interactions with people though, just like having my LO with me also changes those interactions.

    If it's a kid-friendly shower, I'll bring LO knowing what type of event it'll be. If it's not, then LO stays home, and I know it'll be a slightly different style of shower. I just go with it, either way.

  • It's not your party so you have to play by the rules and not bring your child if he is not invited.  Simple.

    I'm sure you love your kid to pieces but you have to realize that not all people share the same feelings as you do.  I read that you take care of you child when he flips out, that's great!  But some hosts don't want a child flipping out and being disciplined in the middle of an adult only party to begin with. Not every parent is as great with disciplining their kid, they're too busy socializing as their child gets into things, or starts up a game of tag in the middle of all the adults.  To say no kids allowed is perfectly appropriate to avoid this issue from happening.

    Bottom Line:  Not all parties are kid friendly...leave them at home or decline the invitation.

  • Total aside: I get it that some parents want to have an adult only event and so do some hostesses.

    Why not meet in the middle?

    When I co-hosted my girlfriend's baby shower I hired babysitters. We gave them run of the upstairs (this was in a friend's home) & they came down to eat etc. Other than that it was playtime upstairs while the parents chatted downstairs.

    It worked out great. I thought I would bring it up if anyone needed alternatives. I get that OP was just ranting, but it brought it to my mind and I thought I would continue. 

    Personally I don't care about kids at showers. I've been to both and I've seen all kinds of parenting. If the host or MTB wants the event to be adults only then they may have to deal with some folks RSVP no because they can't get a sitter or whatever. 

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  • I guess if your child enjoys hours of gift opening, adult conversation and mingling, then you have yourself the perfect child.
  • image BettyBookworm:

    Total aside: I get it that some parents want to have an adult only event and so do some hostesses.

    Why not meet in the middle?

    When I co-hosted my girlfriend's baby shower I hired babysitters. We gave them run of the upstairs (this was in a friend's home) & they came down to eat etc. Other than that it was playtime upstairs while the parents chatted downstairs.

    It worked out great. I thought I would bring it up if anyone needed alternatives. I get that OP was just ranting, but it brought it to my mind and I thought I would continue. 

    Personally I don't care about kids at showers. I've been to both and I've seen all kinds of parenting. If the host or MTB wants the event to be adults only then they may have to deal with some folks RSVP no because they can't get a sitter or whatever. 

    Because it's not up to the host of the party to take care of the babysitting as well.  That is not a part of the shower (if it is an adults only shower).  If they want to, that's lovely, but it isn't in the job description.  As a host, I wouldn't have to appease everyone, I would just have to plan my party as I see fit.  If you need a babysitter, get one yourself.  Would you ask the host to pick you up and take you to the party and then drop you off after as well because you don't have a car or couldn't find a ride? 

    You take care of your affairs as a guest, the host only needs to plan the party.  If you can't come because no one can watch your child, well, you'll be missed. 

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  • "It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me."

     I think that's the crux of it.  By my viewpoint, it's not the guests' choice to make in the first place.

  • image RoxyLynn:

    "It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me."

     I think that's the crux of it.  By my viewpoint, it's not the guests' choice to make in the first place.

    I kind of think it all boils down to this. Well said. 

    Single Mother by Choice. Life didn't work out the way I planned so I did it on my own. IUI #s 1-3, unmedicated = BFN, IUI #s 4-6, 50mg Clomid, Ovidrel = BFN IVF #1: 23R, 20M, 17F. 5 day transfer 2 blasts. 2 Snowbabies BFP 6dp5dt, Beta #1 7dp5dt = 58, Beta #2 9dp5dt = 114, Beta #3 10dp5dt = 187 1st Ultrasound = 5/3, not much to see yet. 2nd Ultrasound = 5/17, TWINS!!! Hospital Bed Rest at 32 weeks due to pre-ecclampsia and severe edema. Audrey Grace, 5lbs9oz, & Lydia Louise, 6lbs, born via emergency c-section on 12/6/12 at 36w1d My IVF Journey
  • image RoxyLynn:

    "It just honks me that someone has taken the choice away from me."

     I think that's the crux of it.  By my viewpoint, it's not the guests' choice to make in the first place.

    You nailed it.

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  • image Liz4444:

    Like you, Balls, I went most places with my parents... out to all restaurants, on vacations, etc.  The one time I had a tantrum in a restaurant, we left without eating.  I learned at a young age how to act appropriately given the setting.  I hope to do the same with my child. 

    That being said, I think when it comes to an event, it is the prerogative of the host and guest of honor as to whether they want kids there or not.  It is their party, they can dictate the guest list.  If I go to a shower and DD is not invited, she will stay home and spend a few hours with her father.  If she is invited, that is great too.  There are also plenty of things children are invited to that I don't think are appropriate.  SIL is getting married in October.  It will be a black tie, late night affair with loud music and a lot of drinking.  Personally, I don't think it's an appropriate setting for DD, but, SIL wants her there.  I would rather leave her with a sitter, but she will be going.  

    Whatever someone's reasoning for wanting or not wanting kids at an event really doesn't matter.  This is one of those things that I think is a non-issue and if someone wants to get so butt hurt that their kid wasn't invited, they don't have to go.  When you have a party, you get to write the guest list, if you think kids should be there, invite them. 

    I just think that this is one of those things that there is no right or wrong to, it's just a personal preference. 

    I totally agree with this as well. Well said. 

  • No throwing of diaper genies here. I agree with you. There were a lot of kids at my shower for DD, and I loved having them there. 

    I can see the other side of the coin though. My aunt and uncle's kids are holy terrors, and I don't see them often because of it. My last straw was when I was sitting on the couch at my grandmother's house around 7 months pregnant and their oldest (8 or 9 at the time) jumped on me. She was not disciplined for the action or explained why it was a bad thing to do. Her mother did not even get up off the other couch to pull her off of me, DH had to do it. All she did was call for her husband. 

    Needless to say, I did not want them at my shower and told my hostess as much. My grandmother invited them behind my back and then called my hostess to tell her off for not inviting them putting her in a bad spot. They didn't ruin the shower or anything like that. But DH was prepared to ask them to leave if he needed to.  

      

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  • image BallSox:

    I want to preface this whole rant with the fact that this is my opinion and I know I'm in the minority.  However, I do want to explain a little why it bothers me so much.  

    I am a parent.  I parent my child.  This means, to me, removing him when he becomes disruptive, rude, loud, etc.  I am a good parent.  I make it a point to discipline him (even as a toddler) when he misbehaves.  It doesn't matter to me if we're at the mall, the library, church, the grocery store, the zoo, a wedding, a shower, the museum or a TGIFriday's.  If he starts misbehaving, shrieking, screaming, running amok, etc---I remove him from the situation until he calms down.  If I know a situation is not child-friendly or appropriate (a black tie wedding, for example), I will choose to get him a sitter or decline the invite.  This is my choice as I know what is and is not appropriate for my son at his age level.  

    Now, I realize that I'm likely in the minority in this.  I know there are a lot of lazy parents out there and it sounds like some of you know some too.  My friends and family are not lazy parents.  I was removed from a grocery store and taken home to my father (while mom went back to finish shopping alone) when I threw a tantrum.  

    I learned from these experiences.  I knew what was proper behavior and I knew the consequence of my actions.  I enjoyed going out with my parents and my live-in grandmother.  I have had some amazing and unique experiences as a child, a young adult and an adult.  I know how to use a napkin, the proper way to butter my bread and the right forks to use at a proper place setting.  

    We wonder why kids act like fools when parents are discouraged from bringing them out in public during the most impressionable ages and stages of their life.  I think we're doing our kids an incredible disservice to their futures by keeping them home with some underpaid teen sitter while mom and dad go out to a nice dinner.  (Not that parents don't deserve the occasional night out, I love a good date night :-D). 

    Do I think that my son should be the center of everyone's world?  No.  I know that not everyone likes babies/toddlers/children.  I don't expect every event to be automatically welcoming children (and specifically my son) which is why I don't always roll my eyes at no-child formal weddings.  However, at a casual party celebrating someones impending parenthood?  If you don't like babies/kids, you should have really thought about not reaching for that condom, no?  

    I guess my point (although I've done some serious ranting) is that in my circle it is odd to not have kids invited to functions because we are (usually) very diligent about determining if something is appropriate for a child and if we think it is (such as a shower), we actually do the work of parenting our children once we're there.  It bugs the [email protected] out of me when someone rationalizes not having kids there because "Kids are holy terrors! They will steal your thunder!"  They will destroy the party! etc" because it's not the childs fault they have crappy parents who don't discipline them.   

    :ducks and hides from the diaper genies that are going to be thrown at my head:  


     

     

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  • image BallSox:


    There are times that I love and look forward to not having my son with me.  For example, my husbands CW had a retirement party last weekend.  Between my son already being at my parents house and the nature of the party (large party dinner at a restaurant, drinking, etc) I decided not to bring L.  No less than 75% of the people there asked us why L wasn't with us and made a point to say they missed seeing him.  No one explicitly invited or said he wasn't invited, I made the choice as the parent.  Trust me, I don't take him everywhere, I judge the situation and make the call.  Yes, I realize as a guest, this isn't my call to make for other people's parties and I agree, I'm merely explaining why I find it weird/rude.  

    I'm sure there were other points raised but I don't remember them now.  :-P 

     

    Have you considered that other adults might "love and look forward to" time WITHOUT your son or other children? Even if he is the best behaved little kid in the entire world, sometimes adults just want to enjoy some adult time and I do not see how you can find fault in that. I am a kindergarten teacher and a mother. I absolutely love children but sometimes I just want to spend time with my adult friends doing and talking about adult things and not have to worry about kids being there. I think your rant is quite silly to be honest.

  • I can understand why some people don't want kids at a shower, mainly because I have a SIL who is the type to sit and laugh while her kid throws a tantrum, makes a giant mess, or screams bloody murder, while she sits back and everyone else ends up running interference so my nephew doesn't A) ruin the host's house or B) hurt himself.  Not everyone is going to want to kid-proof a whole house for an event, and although you sound like the kind of mom I want to be, there are so many more parents who are just too lazy to manage their child in public.

    I do think most baby showers should be kid-friendly, but there are many types of baby showers out there.  I also think no one should be offended if you decline the offer since it's not something you necessarily think warrants getting a sitter.

    I think the big rule of thumb is, unless a name is on the invite, they are NOT invited.  If you think your child or spouse should be, it is perfectly alright to politely ask if you can bring them, but you have to be willing to hear no as an answer without taking offense.

     For my wedding, there was only one person with a kid invited--the dreaded SIL.  I love my nephew, but he has not been given the lessons you spoke of, and acts out wildly in public and private (who can blame him? He doesn't know any different.)  That being said, I didn't want to not invite him to our ceremony, since it was in the afternoon, it was not super duper formal, and at that age (3), my sisters and I attended weddings.  The reception went from 8-11pm though.  Since I've seen SIL and BIL take their son out WAY too late at night (only making him much more cranky and misbehaving) for their own pleasure/convenience, and because it would be a bad environment for the little man (loud, lots of drinking, not a lot of space to move around in), we politely asked them well in advance to find a sitter, and even offered to arrange for a sitter for him.  They were more than happy to since we gave them notice.

     That being said, during the wedding rehearsal the day before, SIL let my nephew tear ass through the goings-on while she sat back and giggled.  He was hiding behind the minister's skirt, wailing for his dad's attention (who was the best man), and otherwise totally interupted the time-pressed rehearsal.  At the ceremony, he screamed his head off immediately.  SIL sat on her butt, and my MIL ended up grabbing him to take outside.  Thankfully, a family friend saw her get up and took over, and waited with him just outside so he could watch the ceremony but not disturb anyone.  I would have been furious if MIL had missed our ceremony because of SIL's crappy parenting. 

    So, just goes to show, even though I love kids and love my nephew very much, some parents are just too lazy to not have some parties be adults only, and it's no reflection on the kids or the good parents out there.

    Kudos to you for being one of the few who actually teach their children how to behave!

    *whew.  Can you burn calories venting??*

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