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Highschool Reunion "No Kids Allowed"

post #1 of 67
Thread Starter 

I was just told that my highschool reunion is a no kids event-including my not even four month old who spends all of his time in the sling. I don't really get this. Can someone explain this kind of thinking to me? I don't understand how my infant will change anyones evening. I don't leave him yet, so I won't be able to go. I also think this is a really strange rule, and It sort of irritates me. 

post #2 of 67

I've seen this a lot for formal events, ceremonial events, and things which are directly incompatible with kids, like late-night parties. I think it's that children and infants do really change the atmosphere of an event, and that if you are trying to have a certain mood it's easier to preserve it when it's adults only. Family-friendly events have a certain charm, but not every event needs to be like that. 

 

For the most part I've seen people be a good sport about it, and in cases like yours where a baby is too young for caregivers to take over, the parents just accept that certain limitations are a part of life with a baby. 

 

I personally think event organizers have a right to plan for what they think will be the most fun, just as guests are perfectly within their right to decline something too restrictive. 

 

Also, as a host, you have to keep in mind that some things are all or nothing-- there's either going to be 40 kids of all ages or no kids at all. You can't exactly make exceptions if one person has a calm baby, while another's is fussy-- that would be incredibly rude. 

 

Where the mutual respect falls apart is when either the hosts take it as a personal offense that parents of young kids can't get away, or when parents take it as a personal offense to family life. 

 

ETA: One example of how babies and children change events can be seen in the difference between an evening at a family restaurant and a fine dining establishment. Noise level, topics of conversation, how attentive people can be vs. how distracted they are by their kids, the consumption of alcohol... the list goes on and on. Without kids there's just less variables to plan for both host and guest, and plenty of people welcome the excuse for "grown-up time." 

post #3 of 67
I've always found that kind of thing to be child/baby free, which can bum me out as I have to miss stuff I don't want to miss, but I think it is the norm.
post #4 of 67
Get a sitter for two hours or don't go.


Some folks spend a lot of time planning the perfect evening and their idea of that perfect evening does not involve children... theirs or someone elses. No matter how quiet or well-behaved, it changes the tone.


I don't care for dogs. i can't tell you how many nice picnics, hikes, outings and outdoor concerts I have attended where someone let their dog get too close to me, my food or my baby. And then they don't wear diapers, you know? greensad.gif ICK! That really busts my bubble but somehow dogs have become acceptable almost everywhere. Gross.
post #5 of 67

Where is the event?  Bar or club?  Who all is coming?  Awful question - any sex offenders in your graduating class?

 

Some people just want to have fun without worrying about having kids around.  Some venues have licensing rules.  And sometimes people have less pleasant considerations. 

 

I admit that I get annoyed when people claim that they just can't comprehend why anyone would hold an event like this - there are plenty of reasons, stretch your imagination a little! - although I understand why it's annoying when people plan potentially family inclusive things like school reunions to block families out.

post #6 of 67
OP, I don't like events that ban kids either. I just missed my high school reunion (because I'm preggo and didn't want to fly) so I know it sucks if you can't go! I'm sorry. Can you go for a little bit? Does baby take a bottle? My DS didn't take one so I completely understand your frustration.
post #7 of 67
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeepyCat View Post

I admit that I get annoyed when people claim that they just can't comprehend why anyone would hold an event like this - there are plenty of reasons, stretch your imagination a little! - although I understand why it's annoying when people plan potentially family inclusive things like school reunions to block families out.

Oh trust me, I understand the mindset of not having kids around. I wouldn't dream of bringing my 7 and 5 year olds to a grownup event, or any event where I or others want to let loose and say and do what they want. It is the infant in the sling that I don't understand. When a person does attachment parenting, they wait until the parent and baby are ready to leave each other. If I have a baby who stays with me and he really just nurses and hangs out in the sling, how could I be not invited to an event like that? It feels to me like unfair exclusion and sort of unreasonable. 

post #8 of 67
That's not how most people define attachment parenting - typically, it's about responding to the child, which leaves a lot more potential space for alternate caregivers. It does not have to be all mom all the time. Really, believing that you can't leave your four month-old for even a few hours is pretty extreme. I consider myself AP, and left my kids with other caring and responsible adults at that age, particularly for evening events, when they'd sleep at home, but stay up (and get overwrought) when they were out with me.

You know your kid and what works for your family. If no kids means you can't go, I'd just discourage you from taking that personally. Unless your high school reunion was run by the most unrepentant clique of Mean Girls ever, they didn't aet out to not invite you.
post #9 of 67
Lots of AP kids don't take bottles because many moms just don't introduce them. So even if she wanted to leave baby for four hours she may not be able to. That's how my DS was. In fact, he would NOT nurse anywhere other than home so not only was I chained to him but I couldn't leave the house for more than about an hour WITH him. It was crazy. But I'm about to do it all again LOL.
post #10 of 67
I think the point is that you can't say "sleepy infants 0-1 ok, but not loud ones or kids over 1." It's all or nothing.

And I totally understand feeling like attending is too big an obstacle for your family, but you made a choice for how to raise your kids, knew it involved sacrifices, and here's one of the many.

We are facing a similar decision with a wedding in November, when DD will be 4mo and I am just skipping the adult only events.
post #11 of 67
My cousins are having a family reunion in Guatemala next year. DS2 will still be little and I just can't see traveling there with him. I'll have to miss it. It truly is lame. :-( I'm sorry you can't go to your reunion!!
post #12 of 67
Maybe I'm rude, but I always ignored no-kid clauses when mine were less than 6 months or so....I took it to mean, no stroller/carseat/gigundo diaper bag/warming bottles/highchair/crying/crawling/talking/mess making etc. A lump underneath my sling and me occasionally stepping out to nurse or soothe (which I always did step out if kids were not welcome) didn't seem like anything disruptive. I would just mention that my nursling couldnt leave me yet and I really didnt want to miss it.
I think it depends on how you parent a newborn...when they say no kids they are picturing a circus. I never had anyone protest, sometimes people didnt even realize I had baby with me.

I should add that I didn't have any family/friends available to watch mine. I would have had to pay a complete stranger, which is quite different. The same applies if your baby has never had a bottle, they really do need mom specifically and a sitter is less of an option.
Edited by myra1 - 10/12/13 at 7:26pm
post #13 of 67

I definitely ignored no-children rules when my babies were tiny. (and have received explicit invitations that were "no kids except babes-in-arms" which allows for a little flexibility without having it be a fully-childful event). But we also skipped going to events where babies would be actively disruptive, or one of us would go, or we left the kids for an hour or two with grandma and grandpa.

post #14 of 67
Many facilities, bars included, have rules where no persons under 21 are permitted on the premises after a certain time, and it's certainly possible that a reunion may be at such an establishment.
post #15 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by MeepyCat View Post

That's not how most people define attachment parenting - typically, it's about responding to the child, which leaves a lot more potential space for alternate caregivers. It does not have to be all mom all the time. Really, believing that you can't leave your four month-old for even a few hours is pretty extreme. I consider myself AP, and left my kids with other caring and responsible adults at that age, particularly for evening events, when they'd sleep at home, but stay up (and get overwrought) when they were out with me.

You know your kid and what works for your family. If no kids means you can't go, I'd just discourage you from taking that personally. Unless your high school reunion was run by the most unrepentant clique of Mean Girls ever, they didn't aet out to not invite you.
. This response is sad. Not leaving a four month old is extreme?!
post #16 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by swede View Post

. This response is sad. Not leaving a four month old is extreme?!

I don't think she meant extreme in a bad way, just that it's on the more strict end of attachment parenting. Many attachment parents work so they have to leave their babies at home and still consider themselves attachment parents, as well they should. And I also don't think there's anything wrong with a parent needing a little space from their baby and so having a loving person fill in for them for an evening. I think the term includes a wide range when it comes to when parents are willing to be away from their babies.
post #17 of 67

My class reunion is usually a weekend-long event.  All of the events are kid friendly except one grown up night time cocktail party.  I don't think it's unreasonable to want a grown up party and as others have said, you can't say "sleepy quiet non-mobile babies ok, the rest of you are out of luck."

 

As for the rest of you breaking the requests and taking your kids to "no kids" events, I assume you have no idea the hard feelings you're causing.  Even if your child sleeps the whole time, I PROMISE other people who got sitters are thinking well look at that, (the host) made an exception for Whoever but not for her own cousin/niece/best friend's daughter.

 

You make your parenting choices and you live with them.  If your choice is that you never leave your baby with a sitter, you're going to miss some things.

 

ETA - that last bit sounds harsh and I don't mean it to be.  We made similar choices when my daughter was an infant and I don't regret them at all.  She cried constantly and threw up all the time.  I didn't want to leave her anyone else because honestly, who would be patient with a screaming vomit- machine?  We missed a lot of stuff and it felt like a very big deal at the time but ff to now and I can't remember anything specific.  I missed my 20 year hs reunion a few years back because of something kid-related.  I LOVED high school and my friends are now spread out all over the world (it was a boarding school) and I would have loved to have gone but it just didn't work out that way.  You can always offer to plan a family-friendly brunch or picnic the same day or the next when you know people are already in town.  I PROMISE you there will be interest and other people will offer to help.  We usually have at least one "bring your own" picnic and it's well attended.


Edited by NiteNicole - 10/9/13 at 11:06am
post #18 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by swede View Post

. This response is sad. Not leaving a four month old is extreme?!

Why is it sad to say that it's on the extreme end of parenting decisions to not leave a baby for a couple of hours?

Our daughter is 2 months old and has spent an hour here and there alone with dad or grandma while I go for a walk, meet with our financial advisor, get a a massage--- whatever. I think it's SO important for our mental health to take a break.
post #19 of 67

Because kids presence changes thing. I do not want to hear infant cry at a formal even. Yes, everyone says their kid will not but they do, and then the smell from the diaper comes by.

 

Even people with kids want to have a child free evening. If I pay $$$ for a babysitter or have relative doing it for me, I want to relax.

 

 

I left my 4 months old with my mom and pumped milk for 3-4 hours. It was fun. My DH and I re-connected and had fund date a this reunion.

post #20 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by cynthiamoon View Post

Why is it sad to say that it's on the extreme end of parenting decisions to not leave a baby for a couple of hours?

Our daughter is 2 months old and has spent an hour here and there alone with dad or grandma while I go for a walk, meet with our financial advisor, get a a massage--- whatever. I think it's SO important for our mental health to take a break.

Because it shouldn't be seen as extreme to meet an infants needs. Especially on mdc.
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