Mom says she was left humiliated after only three guests showed up to her birthday party
With the festive season behind us now, I'm sure many of us are slightly relieved to have a break from the constant parties and social gatherings. They can get a little tiring, after all.
For those who have birthdays around the holiday hotspot, however, the celebrations are even more intense - and there's really only two ways of dealing with it; either you suck it up, and accept that nobody wants to traipse along to your gathering when they've already blown all their savings on Christmas gifts and copious amounts of holiday food, OR you stand your ground, and insist that you deserve a party just as much as the lucky sods that were born in June.
So, when one woman on Mumsnet decided to go for the latter option, she was sort of counting on her 78 guests to have the same party-ready attitude.
Unfortunately, only three of them did.
"It's my birthday today, a big one," the woman began her post on Mumsnet. "I don't live in the UK anymore but decided to throw a party back home to celebrate this milestone, with drinks, food and entertainment laid on."
"I invited people months in advance (with occasional reminders in between), and organised it on Sat just gone as that was the day most people could make. So we travel 500km, kids in tow, the evening comes and... 3 people turn up. 3. A few people did message that they/their kids were ill, but plenty of others simply didn't show. It was, quite frankly, humiliating."
She then put this question to Mumsnet:
"Am I Being Unreasonable to be gutted that no-one bothered to come? For context, I have thrown a couple of birthday parties over the years that were also poorly attended but those were on NYE itself, so I purposely avoided that this time. And this was a milestone birthday."
"I had 20 confirmed [guests] and 18 maybes and 40 people who didn’t even respond, to those who asked," she later explained in a follow-up comment. "About 7 cancelled due to illness. Even assuming ‘maybe’ actually means 'no, but I’m too polite to say an out-and-out no', that leaves a dozen people."
Oh dear. I can't imagine how upsetting - let alone humiliating - this must have been.
But, as many people in the comments attested to, she was not the only one to have suffered such a huge letdown.
"My birthday is between Christmas and new year and this happened on my 9th birthday," said one person. "Invited my whole class, and 3 people turned up. I said never again! I held my 30th a month after to avoid having a party at the end of December."
"This is why I don't do things like this for my birthday," another added. "I once organised a night out with a few friends for a random birthday and they were all over an hour late. I stood around in a bar by myself and felt like crap."
At least one person had some good advice, however: "I've experienced this. You focus your attention on the 3 who turned up."
As someone who also has a birthday around this time of year (feel free to send me a gift, folks), I know how annoying it is to get rejections from guests who "are just so exhausted from Christmas" or "don't really have the money to come out at the moment". My solution has always been to have a small gathering with only my closest friends, and perhaps save any "milestone" birthdays for the summer.
It sucks for this woman to receive such a small turnout for something she clearly put a lot of effort into, but hopefully she still managed to enjoy her big day with those who cared about her the most.