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Author Topic: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party Update #7  (Read 6082 times)

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How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party Update #7
« on: April 21, 2014, 02:50:35 PM »
B/G- Since before I was born, my godparents have thrown an annual party for the first night of fishing season. The party starts at midnight and goes to the early hours of the morning. I went to my first party at around 9 or 10 and continued attending regularly until a few years ago.

The parties changed tone when I hit my late teens/early 20s as it became less my godparents' party and more their son's (who is my age). A lot more people (20 or so in my childhood to 50+) and a lot more drinking and hard partying. In my early 20s I really enjoyed this party and always had a great time, however I have outgrown that type of extreme partying. Also part of the reason I attended the party was because it reminded me of my father, as we always went together, however it's been more than 10 years since my father was killed and I no longer feel the same urge to cling to the things that remind me of him as I once did.

DH also does not enjoy these parties at all. He doesn't like the cold, doesn't fish, and find the crowd of drunk people obnoxious. He went with me a few times, but he does not enjoy it.

I did not conciously stop attending. The first year I missed I was 5 months pregnant (and was not going to subject myself to a treacherous path in the dark, a crowd of drunk people and late nights) and then the next year I did not have a baby-sitter and then last year I was 8 months pregnant. So I have not been in three years, right before I got married was the last one. End B/G.

I have been asked about whether I am coming this year. I have truthfully answered that I have a commitment. I know I will continue to be asked and really I have no intention of every going again, it is just not my idea of a good time. I love these people and I have fond memories of these parties, but it's not where I am in my life anymore. I know it's going to come again, probably every year, and I'd love to come up with a good response to make it clear its not something I"m interested in any more, without causing any hurt feelings. I think my godfather takes it a bit personally, as I"m turning my back on tradition and in the past, he's referenced my later father and how "he'd want me there" and I'd like to shut that down, as it is hurtful. I'd also rather not have to deal with this every year.
« Last Edit: July 03, 2015, 09:53:31 PM by LadyR »


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2014, 02:53:49 PM »
First off, I'm sorry for the loss of your father.

What do you think of saying something blunt and honest like you've said here? "I have always really enjoyed these parties and the tradition, but the tone of the party has changed to be more wild and that's not something I'm interested in any longer."


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2014, 03:09:41 PM »
I'd reply to uncle with something like "The party has changed a lot over the years, and I'm at a point in my life now where staying up all night and drinking just don't work for me.  So instead of the fishing party, how about you and (aunt/cousin/etc.) come over to my place for lunch one Sunday next month instead?"


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2014, 03:13:35 PM »
I would shut godfather down fast with that line of guilting. "GF, please don't presume to know what my father would want. He's been gone for a long time and quite frankly it's hurtful and manipulative."

If that's too harsh, how about, "GF, my father and I really enjoyed the parties back when you and GM threw them, but with him gone and your son throwing the party it is just not the same. Dad's not here and it's not the same as it used to be; DH and I just don't enjoy that much drinking and hard partying."

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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2014, 03:19:29 PM »
I wouldn't get into the whole "I don't like the hard partying" thing; I think that just comes across as a criticism.
   You could do the whole, "I can't stay up as late anymore," perhaps.

Do your best to maintain links w/ people apart from the party. And then start saying, "Oh, I won't be able to come," and segue into "I don't really do the party anymore."

And if he gets into what your dad would want, get really icy really fast and hang up on him. "How dare you bring up my father in order to manipulate me. That's incredibly hurtful. I cannot be in this conversation anymore; I'm too angry. Goodbye."
   Give him some negative reinforcement so that he'll hopefully learn to knock that off. He's offensive; let him know that.


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2014, 03:30:16 PM »
I'm not sure why you have to say that you never want to go again.  Do you know that?  The party has changed since you started going...isn't it possible that it could change again, as your cousin's life changes, to something more palatable?

I think the approach is that you don't want to go now...and that's ok.  Say something like "with the kids so young, I don't think that I will have the energy or stamina to attend." or "I can't go again this year, I'm sorry, but thank you for asking!"

I would be careful about making such permanent statments about a future desire.  This is your family and I'm sure that you'd like to be included in future party invites if the nature of the party changes...which is possible, right?  I'd also be careful about saying anything that passes judgement in how they decided to do the party.

If you get a guilt trip from a family member, just blow it off "I know my father would understand that with my commitments to the kids, that I can't do things exactly the way I did before they were born.  I know he understands and I hope that you do too."   or "My not going these last couple of years is not a reflection of how I feel about the family.  I love you all very much.  For me, this is a party that I just can't attend right now.  Life circumstances do not allow it."


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2014, 04:00:06 PM »
It starts at midnight? That right there is why I wouldn't go. Even with an overnight sitter, how could you possibly party all night, get just a few hours of sleep, and be able to function the next morning when your babies wake up?


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party
« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2015, 09:52:27 PM »
I thought I'd update this and say that I did actually go to the party this past year. I went for an hour, long enough to catch up and chat. The party has gotten much calmer and it was fun. I'm not sure I'll go every year, but I am glad I went and that I didn't write it off entirely, especially since we have now moved back into the area and it was a good opportunity to catch up with people and renew some old relationships.


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Re: How to Say I No Longer Wish to Attend Annual Party Update #7
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2015, 06:37:02 AM »
Sorry for the loss of your father.  Mine passed in 2006 and I miss him every day. 

"My father would have no problem with my decision, thank you very much.  Going to a party that starts at midnight until the wee hours of the morning, for a sport that we do not even participate in, is just not our thing anymore.   We see each other at other times of the year, so I am fine with not attending this one event."

Sorry, posted before I saw this was an old post and saw your update.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2015, 06:38:36 AM by YummyMummy66 »