Whenever one of my children receives a birthday party invitation, I have one question — and only one question — I want answered. I don’t care where the party is. I’m not particularly interested in what the activities or theme will be. Heck sometimes, I don’t even care who the party is for. The question I want to be answered is, “Is this a drop-off birthday party or one where the parent stays?”
Birthday parties where the parent of an invited kid has to stay are the worst.
The. Absolute. Worst.
These parties amount to a parent watching his child at a location beside his own house. It’s usually two hours with other parents, sitting in some uncomfortably small chair in a bounce house or other “kid centered” facility. What’s worse? Watching the host load your kid up with soda and cake before sending them back home with you. And to think, you bought a gift for someone to put you through this.
Of course, I guess it won’t be long before my kids won’t even want me to know about what they are doing with their friends, let alone want me to be there with them during parties.
I suppose there could be worse ways to spend your weekend besides attending a birthday party with your child. Sure the chairs are tiny and the conversations are awkward, but it wouldn’t be the worst thing to meet some of the parents of the friends your kid hangs out with. And who doesn’t love to watch their children play and have fun with a group of friends, even if they are scarfing cake and chugging soda while they do it.
Maybe the “parent stays” parties aren’t so bad after all.
What is your birthday party preference? Stay and hang out or get out of Dodge?