How do you handle invitations from people.....


Going Green
who aren't around your difficult child enough to know what's going on? My cousin invited us to a small Memorial Day cook out. We normally only see her at reunions when difficult child is occupied and not showing his "lovelier" side. I would love to go as a family and see her and her family but I just never know how difficult child will act at things like this. It's not that he blows up or rages but if he decides that HE'S bored then it's TIME TO GO. Or we could get the perfect gentleman, charming everyone in a five mile radius. Or we could get the completely inappropriate jokes/comments, etc. or the "exploring" of their house and belongings or....well, you all know what I mean. I sent her an email saying that I wasn't sure what our work schedules are (husband works retail hours and I have no desire for this to be just me and difficult child) and gave her a quick difficult child explanation. (Never know what behaviors, his own set of rules...blah blah blah) She and I have talked about him over the years and she knows there are issues, I guess I'm just worried about the difference between hearing about a difficult child and actually experiencing one. (Also, they live 2 hours away and I would hate to drive down there and get a relatively quick appearance of the aforementioned lovely side of difficult child and have to turn right around and come home.)

How do you guys handle these types of things?



Well-Known Member
If your cousin is unaware of the severity of his disorders, I would be very up front, call and lay it all out and see her reaction. If she sounds horrified, rather than hoping for the best, I wouldn't go because you don't know how your child will behave. If it's a matter of YOU not wanting to have to leave early, well, you don't KNOW for sure and CAN'T know how he'll behave, so two cars sounds good to me. I wouldn't go if I thought I'd be judged or my child would be judged for things he can't help or unless you have a very thick skin.
If it is close family or friends, who are aware of the situation, I tell them up front. Sometimes they forget how Pixie can be.

If it is a distant friend or relative (come to so-and-so's first communion...yeah, like she is gonna sit through church) and they do not know the whole story, I honestly give the little white lie rather than go into Pixie's mental history. "Sorry, got a show that night. Sorry, she will be with her dad that night."

I don't exactly feel right doing that, but I don't feel like telling everyone about my daughter's GFGness, either.

Wiped Out

Well-Known Member
Staff member
We're a lot like Nomad. Sometimes we take two cars. Sometimes difficult child stays home with husband. We often do an early exit so difficult child can hold it together.


New Member
Sometimes if a child is in a different surrounding they behave better than they do if they are in their normal surrounding. I would warn the family how difficult child acts and if they still want you to come then I would go and if difficult child acts up excuse your self and either go home or have a talk with difficult child. When 8 and I go somewhere I just have a little talk with him before we go and I ask him to promise to TRY to behave for a bit and I will give him a special treat or a reward when we get home

timer lady

Queen of Hearts
We either tag off on invites or take 2 cars. There are times, when it's family, it's one car & the plan to leave early if necessary.

There really is no reason to go into a long explanation if you're not up for it.


I stopped going to family gatherings long ago. Not that I have much family left anymore. they all have grown children, grandchildren and have their own get togethers. i have no in-laws, or any family from husband's side. and, well i am 16 years younger than my oldest brother.
Regardless...anytime there has been any type of family get together, my brothers sit around and brag about how much money they have. (could help out poor little sister going through rough times). But, My sister is a kindergarden teacher, she is now 57 and has been teaching since college graduation. She is a big drug pusher. Can't teach anyone unless they are on medication. Big time issue with that. I don't agree. Not all kids need medications. And not all medications. help the kids. She has told me since difficult child was 3 that there is something wrong with him. We are not being good parents. He needs all these medications.
then there is my sister in law. A bit older, teaching same amount of time, only 5th grade. she taught Special Education at one point. She too points out all that is wrong with difficult child. I don't want to hear that. i do the best I can, and I do not agree with them. I do not say things about their children/grandchildren. I am lucky if I see them once a year. We have a family week at our cottage in door county. I dread the event, but it means so much to difficult child.
I grew up there. On the water, boat, jet ski's, woods, motorbikes. the entire time i am there all i hear is how they diagnos difficult child. I don't want to hear it. Last year difficult child wanted a fire in the beach, and fireworks. Everyone was saying no, and i said, "doesn't seem that long ago when all your kids were here building fires, lighting fireworks over the water. We are going to go and do that". shortly after we had the fire started, everyone was there. It means so much to difficult child.