Adults Only, Please!

20 04 2010

We just got an invitation to what would be the 4th “event” in May where children are not allowed.  Seeing that “Adults Only” or “No Children, Please” or “get your sitters”  really makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up.

R is about 13 months old now.  She is in daycare 8 hours a day and two nights a week she gets picked up by someone other than me.  For me, that is too much as it is.   We have had a sitter outside of our normal daycare three or four times (while she was awake).  Each time it was for something that Hubbs and I both wanted to do together. We went to a football game, we went on a date, we went to a New Year’s party, we went to the lake.  I think spending time together is super important.  We often try to get some of our friends’ older children to sit with her after she goes to sleep and walk to the local movie theater or pizza joint.  It isn’t at all that I don’t trust people or that I think she will be wounded.  I would rather be with her than pretty much anywhere else.

I feel like we are being labeled as the couple that never does anything.  Most of our friends get overnight babysitters (usually for the entire weekend) at least once a month.  A few of our friends have older kids (13, 14), but the majority of them have babies the same age as R (most have older siblings).  R is one of 12 babies born in 2009 in our close friends and family. Weekend sitters just isn’t us.  We waited too long for this to miss it.  And miss her I would!!!  We pass on “adults only” events/weekends at least once a month.  And quite frankly, I just don’t get it.

The “adults only” thing does bother me.  I know I shouldn’t be offended.  I know it is peoples’ own choice to do as they please, but to me, the only reason you have a party without kids is so that everyone can get trashed.  And, no thank you.  I’ll pass.   We were pretty much the last of our friends to start having kids.  They are all on their second or third kids.  NEVER did we have a party or other event and not include their kids.  NEVER.  If we wanted to hang out without kids, we hung out with people without kids or with our parents!!

The newest invite is our neighbors.  We LOVE them.  They are good to us.  They are great neighbors and great friends.  I knew we were getting the invite and was excited to celebrate with them.  When I opened it up and saw the “Adults only,”  my heart sank and I was immediately out.  I want to be there for them.   I also want to be there for my friend at his 40th birthday party the weekend after.  But I want to go to the Brooks N Dunn concert the weekend after.  With my husband.  On a date. 

I guess I am not angry about the “no kids” thing.  I just feel pulled in a bunch of different directions.  Good Wife.  Good Mom.  Good friend.  Good neighbor. 

Obviously there aren’t decisions to make here.  I already know what I will do.  It just makes me feel bad that I can’t be everywhere for everyone.

How do you guys handle this type of invite?  Does having a stay-at-home parent (or not) affect this for your guys?  Am I just crazy? Are my friends just trying to live out their college days for the rest of their entire lives and I need to find new ones?

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16 responses

20 04 2010
KLTTX

I can’t believe that your friend do over night sitters so often. My oldest is 6.5 years old and we’ve only done two overnights in his whole life and both of those are in the past year. I too am a working mom so unless it is something that we really want to do, we usually do not go out. I enjoy spending time with my kids. I don’t think there is anything wrong with that.

20 04 2010
BB

Thanks!! Sometimes I feel like I am the only one!
We have several groups of friends that are all about the weekend babysitters. One friend left her son for three days when he was 10 days old! I about died! The same friend left her kids three entire weekends in a row when her son had RSV.
This weekend we invited some friends with a 15 month-old and 6 year-old to our cabin. They were disappointed when we told them to bring their kids. HEELLOOO??? It is a cabin. The kids will LOVE it there. I just don’t get it.
I think I need new friends.

20 04 2010
Jessica

I know that exact feeling, about after your baby is in daycare all day and you’re away all you really want to do is be there with them for a few hours. Colt goes to bed at 7:00. 7:00!! So on a good day I get off at 5:00, home by 5:30. So that gives me an hour and a half of hopefully decent time with him (decent meaning no meltdowns or tantrums because he’s so tired). I’m already sacraficing home-cooked meals (because who wants to cook when I could be playing!). And now I have ANOTHER sweet baby who I miss all day and need to cuddle, too. I’ve basically given up all weeknight invites, and on weekends I have a hard time even wanting to go on a date with my husband, let alone leave them for a party with friends!

Most of my friends are in the same place, but I do notice that especially my church friends (who are ALL SAHM) tend to want to do more kid-free. Which makes sense, they need a break! They’re doing more girls nights out and baby showers on weeknights after the kids go to bed and such. But our closest friends…well, seems like every time we’re together we pick a house and cram all our kids in and let them go wild while we sip on Dr Pepper’s and watch football or something. And THAT is my ideal night out. Even my best friend’s 30th birthday party was full of kids…she’s in my situation, too and wouldn’t want her party without her daughter.

I say find the friends who will let you bring your kids and stick with them for now! You have to make date nights a priority (woohoo Brooks and Dunn!!). And don’t feel bad declining the other invites. You’ll NEVER look back and regret not attending a neighbor’s party but no matter how much time you get with R, you’ll always wish you had more.

20 04 2010
Angie

Hey B!! Wow, you brought up something that my sister and I have differed on for years… and still do! But, I think you are more on her side than mine… and even after having the girls, I am still on the same page. I think that if someone wants to have a party, wedding, graduation, event, etc, that it is totally OK to say adults only. My sisters feelings are always hurt as though someone doesn’t want her kids there specifically, or that they are bashing her family. My point I guess, is that if it’s important enough for me to go, then I’ll go, and find arrangements for the girls. If not, then I don’t go. I am not a drinker so your comment on adults only = alcohol, probably isn’t completely correct. You are super nice that you’ve always allowed your friends kids to come to things… during our IF journey, I had some hard times going to events where kids were there. I remember for my wedding day, I did NOT want any kids there… but I did. It wasn’t because I didn’t want them, it was because I didn’t want them to act up during my vows!! I laugh about it now. My nephew, only 8 months at the time, was there. I definately see both sides to your story now that I have kids. I think that you might have a point on the stay at home thing… since I’m home, being away a few hours is good for me HOWEVER… I’m definately NOT the type to leave my girls for a weekend, or even overnight yet!! I’m not sure when I’ll be at that point! 🙂 Did the adults only thing even ever cross your mind before R? If not, it might not bother you as much as having to make a choice between some fun R time (and lets admit, showing off her cuteness!!) and some adult time… for you, and hubby and for your friends. Since I’ve had the girls, I find so often that when they are with me and I’m “visiting” with someone… I rarely finish a story!! Anyway, great post!

20 04 2010
BB

I think you make a good point, Angie. I guess I have no problem with people choosing to have an adults only party, as long as they are ok with me choosing not to go because of it. 🙂 I guess I just have a hard time getting over the guilt of not going. We have always been the kind of people that make it a point to be at all the birthday parties and weddings and graduation parties and stuff. We can still send our best without being there, I suppose.

Through our IF journey, it was always more the pregnant woment that were hard on me than the kiddos themselves. I think i may have sent an invite with “no fetuses, please,” if I wouldn’t have been totally inappropriate! 🙂 Hehe! Just kidding. kind of. 🙂 So, to answer your question, no it wasn’t ever an issue for me pre-kiddos.

20 04 2010
baby wanted

We don’t have a baby YET but when we do, we plan on doing things as a family. I would not make frequent over night or weekend trips without our baby. I think you should enjoy the concert and spend the other weekends as a family not a couple. We are having a baby shower/goodbye party for my husband on May 22nd and kids are most definitely welcomed!!

20 04 2010
Lisa

I am soooo with you! We are invited to a wedding where children can come to the ceremony but not the reception. UGH…the thing is the reception is just appetizers so what’s the big deal if a baby/toddler is there??? We had our reception at a 5 star restuarant in New Orleans and guess what? Babies and kids and teenagers were invited…and oh my…it was fine…we had a great reception!

Jay and I usually agree on if Shelby doesn’t come with us, we don’t go but this is the one thing he really wants to do, so do we take Shelby to the ceremony then to a sitter for the recepton? Do we take her to the ceremony and then she and I skip the reception…ugghhhh!

20 04 2010
Amanda

I don’t know if it’s because I’m a SAHM or because I fell into parenting a little backwards, but I find that I really need “adult only” time.

We have four kids (three adopted, one foster) and when we went from 3-4 I hired a part time sitter to help out. We have a date night once a week and I teach one night a week. I think that the balance makes me a happier and better mama.

20 04 2010
Maru

“No fetuses, please!” LOL

I’m right there with you. They have the right to have an adults only party and you have the right to choose to stay with baby. Nothing wrong with that. I just don’t get why they would prefer to be without their kids. We go everywhere with our daughter. We can’t get enough of her!

21 04 2010
TXMom2B

We’ve only left our son overnight for a couple days once in his 18 months, and it was very hard, at least at first–and it was with his grandparents, with whom we have an excellent, healthy relationship and trust implicitly. We’re going to make it a once-a-year tradition, at least until he is much older and then we’ll probably do this 2-4 times per year. I don’t think there is anything wrong with overnight sitters, not at all, but we just couldn’t dream of spending that kind of money. We don’t travel nearly as much as we’d like to. I feel like the early-child years are for simplicity and taking it easy. We can travel more when the kids are old enough to enjoy it during the day and not be scared with a sitter in the evenings.

As for “adults only” events, I don’t think we’ve ever been invited to one, with the exception of “girls/guys night out”. Ever. Our local friends started having kids before us and they know that we all spend time with our kids and, what’s more, we want our kids to spend time together and be friends with each other. As for alcohol, it seems there is always someone pregnant or nursing so there is rarely any drinking. It’s just the crowd we run with I guess. Good thing, too, because hubby and I have managed to avoid paying for a babysitter in the evenings this whole time. The grandparents give us one date night per month and we almost always use that for just the two of us. If we want a date the rest of the month, one of us will go out for take-out to eat after we put Andrew to bed and watch a movie at home.

21 04 2010
TXMom2B

Oh, and I’m a SAHM–I still would rather bring my son along to events:-) I’m just more comfortable with going out if either Jim or myself is taking care of Andrew or we both bring him along.

21 04 2010
Jamie

Wow Bri ~ I can’t believe you get those kind of invites THAT often! I was assuming in the beginning that it was for a wedding or something like that. I don’t think I’ve ever gotten an invite to a regular type party where kids weren’t invited…..Are many of your friends stay-at-home moms? That could make a difference for sure! Since I’m home with Milo all week ~ I wouldn’t think TOO much of it to be away from him on a weekend evening once in a while. However, I couldn’t do it all the time…..Why have kids if you don’t want to spend time with them?! 🙂
I’m sorry you’re feeling pulled in so many different directions! I would want to spend as much time as possible with that little cutie pie too! 🙂

It was so good to see/meet you on Sunday!! 🙂
Jamie

25 04 2010
Leanna Ralbusky

I speak as an older mom, because my son is 19. Until he was old enough to do things on his own with his own friends, we took him everywhere and passed on adults only invites. Unless, of course, my parents offered without us even asking. But I never asked.

25 04 2010
Melba

Ahhhh, yet another post where I’m totally with you! We don’t happen to have a lot of “adults only” invites but if we did I know I would feel the same way. My baseline level of existence is that we are a package deal and there are VERY few places I want to go without my child.

That’s not to say that adult alone time isn’t good and even essential at times but if I can’t bring my child to an event that requires my presence for more than a few hours then I don’t want to go.

Maybe it’s the waiting? Maybe this would be different for us if we hadn’t already lived so many years (and been to so many get togethers) sans baby? That or maybe it’s our kiddos too? I don’t know about you (and I’m not bragging here) but Charlie is *so* good, pretty much all the time. Because of that it isn’t problematic for him to come along. I feel like I can socialize/relax even with him around. Granted that may be about to change now that he’s walking but I don’t know…he’s always been a laid back baby and I imagine the trend will continue. Maybe if he were more high strung/high maintenance I wouldn’t feel as much like bringing him?

Either way, I think this is a great post and I’m glad you brought it up. I do have one friend who is more the type to want the kiddos to stay home and for that reason, I’m somewhat relieved (though it’s sad to say) that she no longer lives in the same state. I think we would have had difficulties this past year if she’d been around and still expecting me to live up to her social expectations…

Melba

25 04 2010
Melba

P.S. The tables have now turned and I am SO jealous that you and Jamie got to see each other!!! That’s really cool though, as the green oozes from my finger tips onto the keyboard. *LUCKY* (said with the Napoleon Dynamite sneer)

Love you guys!

Melba

27 04 2010
richele

we’re totally lame because we don’t get too many invites.

we have received two ‘adult only’ types, and we passed.

i’m with my kids all day, and while i do feel like i need to decompress, i do it in the comfort of my own home with mike every night at 7pm when they go to bed. or a quick jaunt to starbucks or target will get me through. we are trying to ‘date’ – but the bottom line is that we don’t want to be away from them. we just don’t. and it really is that simple.

one of my friend’s is planning her wedding and called specifically to see if the arrangements she was making were going to work – hiring an on-site babysitter to tend to the kiddos during the wedding and reception. winner!

i say decline to those invites, unless its something that you are really looking forward to doing.

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