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Confused and unhappy

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

My son's friend recently had a birthday party and my son was not invited.  He felt really bad about it. When I talked to the other mom, she said that it was her decision, and she felt that the other friends would be judgmental of my son.  I'm not sure if she was talking about his personality, which can be occasionally intense, and he may be on the edge of the autism spectrum.  Or perhaps she was talking about his continuing struggle to stay dry at night, since it was a sleepover.  He's come much farther than his cousin or his uncle were at this age (8.5). 

The relationship between the 2 boys has been in flux since the other boy started school in January.  He was previously homeschooled, and the kids had lots of time to free play.  Now, it's limited to a few short visits during weekdays and more playtime once every couple of weeks. I think the kids invited were new friends, from the school. So, maybe that has something to do with it?

I'm flabbergasted, and offended. How can I deal with this?

post #2 of 16
I am not a homeschooler but I saw your thread in the new posts area and couldn't help but comment. When I read this I thought, what the heck is wrong with people? This is so mean. I cannot believe this is the example this mother is setting for her child.

Whatever her supposed reasons are, what she is communicating is that she doesn't value the friendship her son has with yours, or her friendship with you.

I think she would be out of my life. If the children want to play I wouldn't stop them, but I certainly wouldn't be making any kind of effort.
post #3 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardsmom View Post

My son's friend recently had a birthday party and my son was not invited.  He felt really bad about it. When I talked to the other mom, she said that it was her decision, and she felt that the other friends would be judgmental of my son.  I'm not sure if she was talking about his personality, which can be occasionally intense, and he may be on the edge of the autism spectrum.  Or perhaps she was talking about his continuing struggle to stay dry at night, since it was a sleepover.  He's come much farther than his cousin or his uncle were at this age (8.5). 

The relationship between the 2 boys has been in flux since the other boy started school in January.  He was previously homeschooled, and the kids had lots of time to free play.  Now, it's limited to a few short visits during weekdays and more playtime once every couple of weeks. I think the kids invited were new friends, from the school. So, maybe that has something to do with it?

I'm flabbergasted, and offended. How can I deal with this?

 

I am sorry this happened to you.  It always hurts when our kids get excluded from things!  It is hard not to take things like this personally and if it were just a birthday party where the kids show up for a couple of hours and then leave, I would have been offended as well.  

 

However, you mention in your post that it is a sleepover.  Sleepovers can be stressful for parents who are hosting.  If she knew that he  struggles to stay dry at night, maybe she wanted to avoid a possible bed wetting incident?  Also, if your son is "intense" as you put it, maybe she is afraid he'd have trouble meshing with the rest of the group?  

 

I do sleepovers a lot and I have a couple of good friends whose kids I'd never invite to sleepovers mainly because it is a huge responsibility and the kids have a pattern of behavior I have difficulty handling for that long (without their parent's presence).  This doesn't mean my kids don't spend time with them.  They do; just not sleepovers.  

 

I hope your son's feelings are not too hurt and if she is your good friend, your frienship survives this.  

post #4 of 16

Was your son invited over any other time to help celebrate the child's birthday?  If not then I agree that the mother is telling you through her actions that she does not value the friendship her son and yours share and she is not going to nurture it any longer.  I am so sorry for you and your sons hurt over this.  Lost friendships are hard. 

post #5 of 16

Gently, it sounds like a sleepover isn't an ideal activity for your son right now. I think choosing to be offended by her realizing that is a mistake. 

 

And while it's a shame that your son found out about the birthday party, it's perfectly reasonable that they might choose to have a small party that doesn't include all of their son's friends. It isn't fair to the other family to expect them to always include your son. 

 

I'm sorry you and your son are hurting, but I'd encourage you to try to see this from their perspective-- he's making a new group of friends at school, and may have chosen to only invite that group of kids to his party for simplicity's sake. Mixing groups of friends can be awkward for adults, and it may have been too much for your friend's son to handle.  If they're generally good friends, just assume they were doing their best and let it go. 

post #6 of 16

I agree with dalia WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE?? What are teaching our children if we don't teach them to get along with people not like ourselves??

 

This happen to me. My "friend" had a sleepover and did not invite me. I was so greensad.gif no words really fit. Please tell your son that people do things that are just flatout wrong/bad/stupid/#@***. I would stay away from this person as much as possible.

 

typing with one hand

post #7 of 16
I think the part that is the most hurtful was the lack of communication from the other mom. This is a child that her son sees pretty often. If I were the other mom and I needed to decide not to have her son over because of the bed wetting issue, I would go to her first and explain what was happening. This would give the mom a chance to explain to her son what was going on and hopefully avoid the shock of just not being invited. I think the goal of every parent should first be to not hurt a child's feelings, whether your child or someone else's. It was very inconsiderate.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ambersrose View Post

Was your son invited over any other time to help celebrate the child's birthday?  If not then I agree that the mother is telling you through her actions that she does not value the friendship her son and yours share and she is not going to nurture it any longer. 

No, he wasn't invited to anything this year.  At first, when it was going to be a party at a movie theater, he was invited.  Then the plans changed; I don't know why.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Emaye View Post

 

If she knew that he  struggles to stay dry at night, maybe she wanted to avoid a possible bed wetting incident?   

When my son does sleepovers at friends houses, he wears a youth diaper under his pajamas.  I wouldn't expect another parent to have to deal with any accidents.

Quote:
Originally Posted by onatightrope View Post

Gently, it sounds like a sleepover isn't an ideal activity for your son right now.

 

 It isn't fair to the other family to expect them to always include your son. 

 

My son does sleepovers with friends every couple of months, so I do feel like this is a developmentally appropriate activity for him.

Additionally, I don't feel that the other family should always include him.  My son often gets together with his other friends, and this friend also gets together with other friends without my son.  That is all well and good.  I think that children should have more than one friend, if possible.  But, for a birthday party?  Really!?

post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by edwardsmom View Post

My son's friend recently had a birthday party and my son was not invited.  He felt really bad about it. When I talked to the other mom, she said that it was her decision, and she felt that the other friends would be judgmental of my son.  I'm not sure if she was talking about his personality, which can be occasionally intense, and he may be on the edge of the autism spectrum.  Or perhaps she was talking about his continuing struggle to stay dry at night, since it was a sleepover.  He's come much farther than his cousin or his uncle were at this age (8.5). 

I feel your pain....and feel sad for your son.  So, it sounds like maybe your son's friend wanted to invite him, but the Mom didn't?  I would just flat out ask her what exactly was the problem.  Why would the other kids feel judgmental of your son.  I think when you know her reasons, you can make a decision on how to proceed with your friendship.  

post #10 of 16

I'm sorry you and your son are disappointed but it does seem like maybe you are getting a little overly offended by this. People change and friendships evolve and often we grow apart. It happens to all of us and IMO especially as homeschoolers. There are many friendships that have quietly fallen off when the kids started school and my child didn't just because the scheduling is super hard. We never had a falling out and everyone still likes each other as far as I know but it's hard when your worlds are so different. We just had this happen to us. A family we've been friends with since the kids were babies has an Easter party every year that we have always been invited to but we weren't this year. Even though it sucks and we've always enjoyed going, I understand that we aren't as close as we used to be and their kids have a whole new group of friends. We just aren't part of that circle and they can only invite so many people into their home. 

 

I don't think this mom meant to exclude your son to be mean. Since he was invited when it was a daytime movie party and not for the sleepover she clearly felt it wasn't going to work out for overnight. It's her home and her party and she has to deal with any issues that arise. Throwing parties at home, especially sleepovers are exhausting and a lot of work for parents. In the end, she's having this party for her son and his happiness, not his friends. I'm not saying that she shouldn't care about the feelings of others but I can see why she would want to avoid any potential issues with the kids, even if you feel it was unwarranted concern. 

 

Since she's already talked to you about it, you seem to only have the option of letting it go and continuing the friendship or moving on. I hope it works out either way. 

post #11 of 16

hug.gif It hurts, I know. But the ability to make the perfect decisions and handle them with perfect grace and diplomacy is something most of us are not gifted with. It's possible this woman was actually feeling compassionate in her own way and trying to make the best decision for your son without putting him and his family in an awkward position. She may not have realized the way it was going to come across, and she may be agonizing over it right now. And she may simply not be gifted in dealing with situations like this that she has no experience with.

 

I found myself in awkward postions when my son was little, once from him being overlooked for play days and even a birthday party his friends were invited to - he simply wasn't close with the birthday boy - and once from him being insistent that he didn't want a neighbor friend coming to his birthday because the boy was "so wild" in my son's estimation and might make it hard to have a relaxed and delightful day. It's not easy to be in the middle of all the social ups and downs children go through, but one thing I can strongly recommend is trying not to take them as seriously as I did at the time. It will pass, and you can meanwhile create lots of happy days and reassuring memories for him.

 

Try to imagine the situation from a distance and see how you can provide the security and support your son needs without getting too wound up in the immediate events. I'm saying this from the clarity of hindsight - and my son and his friends did all get through those things unscarred, and went on to much more satisfying things. Those turned out to be mighty tiny things in the long haul, painful as they were to me at the time, which I think was actually more painful than they were to him.   - Lillian

post #12 of 16

For me the hardest part of this situation is he was invited when the party was at a theater but when the plans changed he was uninvited. THAT seems to be the only issue here I would worry about. People have their reasons for not inviting other people. My son doesn't want to do playdates with a friend he used to play with a lot because that friend is too wild. When my son was younger he was okay with it, but now that he's getting older and has made older friends, he just doesn't want to put up with a child that is out of control.

 

Recently we had to decline a party for personal reasons. I was honest with the mom about our family's needs and she seems to have taken it personally. I responded to the evite that I'd like to get together for a private party and haven't heard from her. I need to call her but have just been too busy. And a little afraid. I didn't mean to offend her, but I fear I did. It had nothing to do with them, it was all about our needs, but that doesn't seem to have been good enough.

 

Really, I try not to get offended by other people's needs. I would be upset that my son was DISinvited, but not that he was NOT invited. Perhaps just focus on that portion of it. Let her know your son was unhappy when he was disinvited. Maybe suggest that the boys could have a private party at the theater. My guess is the mom may appreciate that. She may feel awful that her son changed his mind on the type of party he was going to have and she didn't feel she could host your son for that particular sleepover. Granted, when my son said he wanted to uninvite some friend's to his party I told him couldn't do that. Sadly this mom didn't do that.

 

In the big picture, how you handle this says volumes about your child's future friendship potential. Someone pointed out once that it doesn't matter if kids are schooled or homeschooled, the majority of their social life will depend on how well the mom gets along with the other moms. If a mom doesn't like another mom she's not likely to support the kids' friendships. Right or wrong I think that is reality. So, what is your goal here: to be right about this incident or to be the mom that other moms want to get along with? 

 

To be even more honest, if your son is intense and possibly on the spectrum he needs all the help you can give him with friends. That will likely get more true as he gets older and kids get less tolerant. This may just be the start. This may be the mom taking the bullet for her son's desires. Maybe this has nothing to do with the mom and everything to do with the relationship between the boys and the mom was too concerned about your son's feelings to say that.

post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post

For me the hardest part of this situation is he was invited when the party was at a theater but when the plans changed he was uninvited. THAT seems to be the only issue here I would worry about.

 

Personally I would be happy to deal with a half dozen or more kids at a movie theatre, but I would want an invitation list pared down *significantly* for a sleepover. Sleepovers are far more challenging for the supervising parent. My limit is three other kids, maximum. I prefer one or two. My guess would be that's all that happened: mom said "well, if it's going to be a sleepover, we can't have that many kids," and the OP's ds was one of the unfortunate kids who didn't make the second cut. Obviously it wasn't handled with perfect sensitivity, but I doubt there was anything malicious or deliberately exclusionary intended. 

 

Miranda

post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by SundayCrepes View Post

For me the hardest part of this situation is he was invited when the party was at a theater but when the plans changed he was uninvited. THAT seems to be the only issue here I would worry about.

 

Personally I would be happy to deal with a half dozen or more kids at a movie theatre, but I would want an invitation list pared down *significantly* for a sleepover. Sleepovers are far more challenging for the supervising parent. My limit is three other kids, maximum. I prefer one or two. My guess would be that's all that happened: mom said "well, if it's going to be a sleepover, we can't have that many kids," and the OP's ds was one of the unfortunate kids who didn't make the second cut. Obviously it wasn't handled with perfect sensitivity, but I doubt there was anything malicious or deliberately exclusionary intended. 

 

Miranda

 

I agree. It is a shame that they told you about the first party idea before they were sure what they were going to do, but I'd do my best to brush it off. Getting upset about it doesn't help anything.  Sometimes people mess up. 

post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by onatightrope View Post

 Sometimes people mess up. 

 

Truer words were never spoken - and count me in as one of those.   wink1.gif   Lillian

post #16 of 16
I know you didn't ask this, but reading about your son made me think of my daughter's salicylate sensitivity. Many kids on the autistic spectrum are sal sensitive. My daughter is not autistic, but I know many kids that are do really well on a low sal diet. The Feingold Association lists one or more of the following symptoms as an indication that your child may be sensitive to certain food additives or naturally-occurring salicylates:
- Gets upset too easily
- Impatient
- Doesn’t seem to hear you
- Aggressive
Irritable
- Doesn’t recognize danger
- Sleep difficulties
- Bed wetting, daytime wetting
- Repetitive actions
- Talks too much or too loudly
- Argumentative
- Sensitive to noise, sounds and lights
- Uncoordinated
- Physical problems such as headaches, urticaria, stomach aches, asthma, hives, ear infections and digestion

Just wanted to pass this info along in case it could be helpful to you. I am sorry your son was hurt. I know it is so heartbreaking to see your children left out.
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