Birthday party or NO.

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Hanging-On, Aug 10, 2010.

  1. Hanging-On

    Hanging-On New Member

    If you've read my Respite thread, this question is about the same.

    difficult child is good with other people except easy child and I. We get ALL the abuse and garbage. Well his birthday is coming up and "Of Course" DEMANDS a party. Well, I'm so fed up with him right now that I'm in the mind to say he has to earn it.....which of course he won't. So, NO party...NO friends over. Just a small cake, easy child and I, and his presents.

    So would you give a party, or No party. Thanks.
  2. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    I've rarely had birthday parties for the tweedles. Not as a consequence more because neither could handle the "break in routine" if you will. The anticipation, the added people, the anxieties, etc were not a good mix for kt or wm.

    Having said that this is totally up to you. I'm all for small celebrations with family only.
  3. keepongoing

    keepongoing Guest

    I'd say No. You are in for a marathon and why do something that so clearly will deplete your resources and be done with resentment.
    We don't do B-day parties with difficult child because they are overstimulating and -well-he has no friends. We usually do something that he handles well and our small family enjoys too -like going sledding. I do believe in finding something that difficult children do well at and is enjoyable for the rest of the family as well. Feeling of success are good for everyone.
    My kid is also on the spectrum (I saw your difficult child had a Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified diagnosis amongst others) and one thing I do with him to explain why he is not getting something he wants is do a Behavior Map (Michelle Garcia Winner - love her stuff). Because my kid does not understand that others have thoughts or feelings as a reaction to his behavior. I write down or draw (he is very visual) what he did, how I felt when he did it, what we thought and how my thoughts and feelings made me react. Kind of the whole chain of difficult child calling you FB, you feeling hurt/sad/mad, thinking 'I don't want to give a party for someone who makes me feel hurt/sad/mad' and guess what: No party. Since my son does not get the thinking/feeling part of other people that whole chain of events is always a mystery to him. I hope that one day he will get it if only interlectually. Not sure about your son but he might have a deficit in that area as well.
  4. Josie

    Josie Active Member

    One year, I did refuse to have a party for difficult child 1. It was probably over her refusing to do chores and I told her since she couldn't be bothered to help when I needed her to, that I wasn't going to go to all that extra trouble to have a party for her. It might have been that she had such a bad attitude towards me that I was afraid to have a party and have her act like that at the party.

    Whatever it was, I didn't give her a chance to earn it because I found she would do just enough to earn whatever she wanted and then go back to her old ways.
  5. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    We have rarely had parties for difficult child; for one thing he doesn't have a lot of friends. At times we have let him invite one friend over for his birthday. If you aren't up to the party, I wouldn't do it (especially with the demanding). Tell him you just want to spend a special day with him and easy child.
  6. barneysmom

    barneysmom Member

    No party. Of course you and easy child, presents and a cake IS a party. A good party.

    "I'm so fed up with him right now"

    Good reason for no big party. Plenty good.

  7. dashcat

    dashcat Member

    It depends on what he means by party and what you mean by "demands". I wouldn't give in to demands for anything from him right now if I were you. Still, i believe in celebrating milestones no matter how my difficult child is behaving. I wouldn't tie a birthday celebration to behavior, but i would also make it clear that demanding a party isn't acceptab le. It's a fine line. You know your child best Follow your gut.
  8. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member Staff Member

    It depends on the norm in the household. If it goes without saying that birthdays = party, then I think he should get one. Sometimes taking things away damages more than we can see on the surface. Especially these milestone things.
    I once took away the privilege of going Trick or Treating. I once took away a Birthday party.
    I regret both times. I wish I could get them back and do them over again. It certainly did not make her more respectful or learn anything from it. So, what is the point?
  9. slsh

    slsh member since 1999

    Speaking as a mom who a) had a kid who had zero friends, and b) took away Halloween for age 7 and 8 (he left for Residential Treatment Center (RTC) when he was 9, so never again got the chance to participate in Halloween), I would think long and hard about taking away a b-day party, especially if parties are the norm in your house. In my book, birthdays (and holidays) are not rewards. They are celebrations. difficult child may be a challenge and heaven knows, I absolutely remember well the feeling of intensely not liking my difficult child's behaviors 24/7/365 for a very *long* time, but ... time passes quickly and he will be grown and gone before you know it. This will be his only 9th b-day and if he handles parties okay (for a difficult child) and he has friends to invite, I'd swallow my aggravation with him and let him celebrate this day.
  10. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'm thinking you could have dinner out with-the family, or cake and ice cream and small gifts with-the family, maybe with one friend. But I wouldn't do a huge party. Definitely, it would overstimulate him. I have always had trouble deciding about parties and behavior, because my difficult child demanded them, too, but I didn't want to look back in time and say "That was the yr he didn't have a party." It somehow becomes bigger than the event itself, very symbolic.
    So I'd do something to celebrate, just keep it very low key.
  11. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Im with Busywend and Slsh on this one. I never took away holidays or celebrations. Not that we ever did big birthday parties but I didnt refuse to allow them their birthday's.

    I will never forget the year I babysat for a friend of mine out of town over Halloween. She and her husband had 7 kids between them all of trick or treating ages. Both parents were out of town that night so I had to be the parent. Two of the kids had done something minor in my book but their mom called me and grounded them from going trick or treating that night with their sibs. I was as upset as they were! They were supposed to stay upstairs in their rooms but I let them get dressed up and hand out candy and even made them up a big bag from the stuff we were giving I just couldnt understand taking away Halloween. Its one night a year and they are only kids for a little while. However, she wasnt that great a mom. Just sayin'.
  12. donna723

    donna723 Well-Known Member

    Under the circumstances, I would limit it to a small family party with cake and gifts. I wouldn't reward bad behavior with a big all-out party with all the friends invited, especially if it was demanded! When my kids were younger, they quickly learned that the best way to NOT get something that they wanted from me was to demand it! That turned in to an automatic "No!" In our house, the only one more stubborn than them was ME!

    But I would never completely do away with a holiday or birthday celebration as punishment for a child. These days are pretty sacred to them and even more important to them than they are to us. They look forward to birthdays and holidays all year long and to make it not happen at all for a child would be devestating to them.
  13. Hanging-On

    Hanging-On New Member

    Thanks everyone. When I say he demands a party. I mean, he has INFORMED ME and then DEMANDED from me (when I said no) to inviting ALOT of people to some entertainment place (so he can get ALOT of gifts), and then ME paying for everyone to come to this place, and the food, cake, etc.....OR....having everyone at the house. AND he has informed me that he's ALREADY invited his providers AND their families, and the other difficult child's from camp..........what???????? This is just another example of how he states something to others that I am in the dark about.

    Since we have NO family within 2,000 miles, birthdays and holidays are always just the 3 of us. We do dinner (at home or at restaurant-BD person gets to pick where to go), have cake, and presents. But I've never done a party because difficult child basically has no friends, so I'd be inviting say the one friend (co-worker) that "I" have. That just seems inappropriate for my friend to come to either easy child's or difficult child's BD. See my point.

    So, to clarify (since I didn't write the thread very good...sorry, my head writing one thing and my fingers writing something else).

    We always do a family BD dinner, cake and presents. BUT this year he has INFORMED AND THEN DEMANDED that we go to a kids entertainment place and I pay for everyone and everything because "he wants ALOT of presents"...sigh. OR We have all these people that I don't know over to the house, and I not only buy all the food and party stuff, but cook and entertain them. EITHER one of these scenarios is what I said NO to. THIS type of thing he would definitely have to earn....RIGHT? Or am I seeing this wrong? I only have me to talk to and discuss this with, that's why I asked. But my beginning thread was not good at explaining this...sorry.
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2010
  14. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I wouldn 't ddo the lots of people I barely know at a place I have to pay a lot for no matter what my kid did. difficult child or easy child. This is not just a difficult child thing. Birthdays are so big that a lot of pcs do this too. I cannot count how many little kids have come up to me at school and invited me to a birthday party at some location in town. Kids that I may have volunteered with a few times while helping a teacher, kids who saw me doing room mom stuff, or kids who just saw me around the school a lot. Often they didn't even know my name or that I had a kid in the school, much less that kid's name! It was never taken seriously except by a few other kids.

    Tell your difficult child that the plans for his birthday are whatever they are, and that NOTHING will get you to pay a lot of money so that a lot of people you don't even know can eat, drink and enjoy whatever is going on in that location. If he wants a party like that he can wait until he is an adult and pay for it himself.

    You are totally right to tell him NO to his plans. ESP for having a bunch of strangers over to your home. in my opinion that is a security risk - you don't know if these people are going to plan to rob you later, or worse, or if one of them will turn out to be a pedophile or not. You hope none of them will have bad intentions, but you do NOT have strangers over for a party with your kids. Period. Regardless of what an 8yo wants.
  15. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    I would just do what you always do. We just do family birthday parties. I think it is a little hard on my kids when they realize that their cousin's get so much more for their birthdays. (We have 9-11 family members that join us for birthdays so it is a decent size party and the kids get about 10 gifts - I think that is perfect. My sister's husband is from the largest family I have ever seen - and they ALL go to EVERY birthday of EVERY child in the family - so they have 40-50 people at their family party and she lets them have a seperate kids party with 10-15 friends. So her kids get 35-40 presents each year. Birthdays are just a much bigger deal to her. And for families like her's I would never suggest cancelling the party for misbehavior as it is so much in the cultural fabic of her family.)

    I think a special birthday dinner with the 3 of you is perfect.
  16. Hanging-On

    Hanging-On New Member

    Thanks everyone. I'm going to do what we always do. Nice dinner, cake, presents, us 3.
  17. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Best of luck.
  18. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Your son is turning 9. I think I might barter with him for his 10th or 11th birthday party to be at someplace like water park, a very cool park with a bounce house, a laser tag place, maybe one of those Fun fun fun places. (Kinda like a big kid Chuckie Cheese). At most water parks you can get half price tickets after 3 or 4 so you might get prices cheaper if you went then. Also cut down on the party time. Get there, have hot dogs, cake and play in the water for a couple of hours. Maybe invite 10 kids. He will think you invited the