When no one turns up to your Birthday party!

My son is nearly 12 and we have just started talking about his birthday  and what he wants to do. He mentioned a party and I am not so sure.

The last party he had was his fifth birthday. He liked dancing so I arranged a party in a hall with a local dance teacher doing some party dances like the hokey kokey and some food.

I invited my son’s whole class at school. Some said no straight away, some never replied and in the end about ten said yes. My son doesn’t like crowds anyway so I figured ten was a nice number.

I went over the top with buying little toys for party bags, a great cake and lots of nice food because this was his first real party and I wanted it to be special.

On the day I started to receive text messages with random excuses why people couldn’t come that had said yes until, by the time of the party, I only had five confirmed guests.

My friend was coming to help and she rang me to ask if she could bring her three nephews as she had ended up looking after them that day. My son had never met her nephews but I said they might aswell come as I had so many children not coming.

The time of the party came and there was me, my son, his sister, my friend and her three nephews and the dance teacher waiting for the five children from school. Only one turned up!

We waited about half an hour and then some children came in with presents. I didn’t recognise them and they looked older than my son but I let them in and welcomed them. My son was really happy that some children had come. About ten minutes later their parents came back and said sorry their party was next door and they had dropped their children at the wrong party! So they left.

We made it as good as we could and the children who came had a great time. My son didn’t seem to mind too much that he didn’t know most his party guests but he did ask where all the children from school were. I kept my tears for later when he wasn’t looking!

Ever since then my son hasn’t had birthday parties. We have been on days out for his birthday and his guests have been his grandparents. We have visited nearly every zoo in the country and fed lots of animals, been ice skating and last year we did an escape room. He has not mentioned inviting anyone other than Grandad.

He had three party invites through the whole of primary school and they were from my friends children. He often talked about other people having parties but he wasn’t invited.

So back to this week’s conversation and I don’t know what to do. He is at a new school. There aren’t many children but there are children he wants to invite. I think he is as nervous as me of inviting them incase no one comes. I don’t even know their parents so it would be a risk.

I know so many children are in this position and I feel so sad for them all, not just for my son.

The solutions I’ve come up with at the moment are to book a backup plan,  try to secretly invite children to an activity he could do as a treat even if they weren’t there and if they came it would be a bonus or  alternatively we might just invite Grandad and go out for the day again.

I will keep you posted how it goes. Hopefully it will be a happy post!

Published by Autism Kids on Tour - Autism without limits

I have two kids and love to show them the world. We dont let autism limit us in our adventures! I write about our adventures and include tips on how suitable activities were for children with autism. I also write more autism specific posts.

11 thoughts on “When no one turns up to your Birthday party!

  1. This makes me so sad and MAD. We made a house rule in our family to invite ALL class to all birthdays, so that no kid gets excluded.
    I know this is not possible for everyone and we are lucky to have some cheap public structures in place. A friend told me parents of her son’s class agreed that boys invite all boys and girls invite all girls, for the same reason.
    I also want to add: I’m sure people cancel last minute because they are superficial. They don’t want to hurt and are not aware all the others canceled. It’s terribly impolite and it’s crazy we have to tell them what are the consequences of their actions, but I suggest, if you feel like it, to flag this, maybe at some parents’ meeting. I bet most would empathise and agree to have some “system” in place.
    I’m so glad to hear your son didn’t notice… but so not okay! sending your hugs

  2. My heart goes out to you, maybe you could arrange a trip to Mc Donalds or Pizza Hut and invite some friends along, if they don’t turn up he’ll still have a good time. My daughter had no friends turn up to her sixth birthday party, I actually went around knocking on neighbours doors and asking them if their kids could come around for a little while, we didn’t really know these kids but there was food to eat and games to play. She has never had a party since, we have a family outing at Pizza Hut, just me, her Dad and siblings and she loves it. Next year we will be on holiday on her birthday, I’m not sure how she’d take to this but she seems happy about it (She’s also 12 now) xx

  3. My son is 7 and we stopped doing birthday parties when he was around 5. We now book trips during that time to places he loves and so far it’s worked out well. Hugs to you and your son!

  4. How heartbreaking. It astounds me that people could be so rude as to cancel on the day. It’s an insult to the birthday boy and the mum who’s gone to the trouble of organising it. The odd one is reasonably acceptable, but not all of them. I remember having a joint 16th I think it was, at my house, with a friend whose birthday was around the same time.. All his friends showed up and I was left phoning most of mine a couple of hours in to see where they all were. It was miserable at that age, can only imagine what it’s like for younger children. I hope this one goes better, sending positive vibes! #BlogCrush

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