I don’t get it.

I have never gotten it and I will never get it.

It’s completely and utterly baffling to me.

Perhaps one of you can explain…

As mothers, we all play countless roles in a single day: Nurse, Chauffeur, Chef, Dentist, DJ, Fashion Director, Janitor, Launderer, Banker, Dietician, Personal Shopper, Photographer, Plumber, Caregiver, Maid, Cheerleader, Counselor, Storyteller, Teacher, Exterminator, Coach, Negotiator… The list is endless.

So, why is it so difficult to take three seconds, play secretary and fucking RSVP for a kid’s birthday party?

Someone, please tell me.

I just don’t get it.

About the writer


In addition to being the founder of all things Scary Mommy, Jill is also the New York Times bestselling author of Simon and Schuster’s Confessions of A Scary Mommy and Motherhood Comes Naturally (And Other Vicious Lies)


KMS 2 months ago

Planning my daughter’s 3rd birthday party I am very irritated with a few non-RSVP’er, one in particular. I did ask everyone to RSVP almost 4 weeks in advance, but I like to plan down to the detail. Customized goodie bags. Enough food. Enough activities, chairs, tables, etc. Time is precious and money is short. The one who RSVP’ed “decide later” to my e-vite is the one that bothered me the most because we are neighbors who have gotten pretty close and she’s one who tends to hate life, air, sunshine, etc…yeah, one of those. Chronic complainer and kind of a recluse except for the bond she’s made with me. That’s another story. I ask her a day before my deadline if she/her daughter is coming and she says “I don’t know if we’ll be sick or something. Something might come up”. I was livid and ready to unleash on her, I took a night to sleep it off and decide if it was worth it. After scanning the net and reading your comments, I was looking for ideas on how to respond exactly and I can’t say I found one, specifically, but for some reason reading your comments helped to calm me down. One way down the list made me realize that I want to have fun and don’t want to stress about RSVPs. Whoever shows up, shows up and if they eat, they eat, if they get a goodie bag, they get one, if they don’t, they don’t! It’s their problem for being rude, not mine. And truth is, I’ve been late to RSVP before too – for no other reason than “I’m not 100% sure yet”, but when it was my party that was being planned, phew, I was not a happy camper. Woosaaa! Enough have RSVP’ed yes that I’m not worried about there not being enough people. There is a chance some of them might not show while I’m worried about the ones who haven’t RSVP’ed (but viewed the e-vite). I am trying to do better myself, but again, I was brought back to reality. Want this to be fun, not stressful!

Niki 1 year ago

I’m so glad to know I’m not alone in the world of manners. I’m planning a party for my daughter’s 6th birthday. I sent a text to a couple of the mother’s saying hey I hope so and so can make it. I know you have busy schedules, so I want to let you know I’ll be sending out invitations to her party next week and gave them the date. They replied, “oh sounds fun and we will look for it.” Well I sent out the invitation and I’ve heard from one parent (none are the mother’s i sent a text to). I’m sending our a reminder email tomorrow. I’ve also been telling my daughter to tell ask her friends if they are coming to her birthday party. I am going to crazy, if no one shows for her party. I told my husband if no one shows up – I’m done with parties. People are just rude. What message are they sending to their kids by not RSVPing or going to a party to celebrate their friends? As soon as I get an invitation I a. look at the calendar b. if we can make it, i put the party on said calendar, c. RSVP immediatley d. ask if there is anything the parent needs the day of the event. If I can’t make it I let them know with an added line that reads I hope so and so has a great birthday. Hopefully next year we can make it!

PSG 2 years ago

I’m dealing with that now. Again.

The first time I tried to have a party for my daughter at The Rat, I invited the whole class. It was the PC thing to do. Out of that entire class, 3 people confirmed and one of the confirmations never showed. People who did not bother to inform me of their intentions did attend.

Years go by, and I decide, now that everyone is a little older, this might better flow copacetic. So I send out invites, which my daughter handed out to just a select few, with all pertinent information including a note that -please- I need to know one week from that day how many will be in attendance. I am ordering a cake, preparing goodie bags and paying (a shitload of money) for a set number of kids at a supervised bounce house. The parents had one full week to let me know and two full weeks to plan for it. Call, leave a message. Easy.
I even invited siblings so that it would be easier for the families to attend.
One day passed the due date. 7 families, 2 have confirmed.

Seriously. What is wrong with people?

Cathy 2 years ago

Ugh!!! Thank you. Will it be completely horrendous to only have goodie bags for the kids whose parents RSVPd? I highlighted the RSVP info and said I need total number to have lifeguards (true – rented out a pool/lazy river/playground in the water place) and they need headcount from adult through infant. Gave a date, hard copy invite and emailed a follow up… Of the 33 kids, I have 7 replies.

Susan 3 years ago

Ladies I’m mordifide at the thought of no one comming to my daughters 1st grade school party so in the invite I’m sending a sticker for the calender for the day of the event and a sticker for the week before with some silly saying with the theme of the party. I’m even thinking to say the 8th person to RSVP will get a prize. People need motivation these days aka a personal kick in the @ss.

Sara 3 years ago

WHEN PEOPLE DON’T RSVP IT DRIVES ME NUTS! I am currently planning my daughter’s bat mitzvah. She told me when she came home from school that people didn’t know to send the RSVP card back. WTF. Are people living in a black hole!?! We are new to the area BTW, what should she do? Any advice?

Nina 4 years ago

I agree with you.For my daughter’s 5th birthday,so far I have recieved only 1 RSVP.Her party is next week…Although we have family friends with their kids who will show up but my little girl would be happy to see people she actually knows.People do not even have the decency to come to atleast return the favor of attending their party.I am never ever going to invite kids from school in future.Atleast she will not have anyone from the class because they were not invited and not because they chose not to be at her party:-(
I am really sad for her…

Clarissa 4 years ago

I’d rather have non RSVP guest show up than to have no one show up.
My daughters 6th birthday party is this Saturday, in which she is so excited that this whole school year she has gone to all these birthday parties and its finally her turn to be the star!
Out of all the invites, only 2 have RSVPed and about 15 have called to tell me that they cannot make it to her party. At this point… I would love for non RSVPed kiddos to show up. I will be so upset for my child if no one shows up. RSVP or NOT!

adri ramirez 4 years ago

we sent out 50 invitations to our wedding and received 2 RSVPs….. people suck.

stephanie 4 years ago

I ended up with only 2 RSVPs. But thankfully that was all that showed up. We had no surprise people. I planned for more just in case and we ended up with extra food and drinks. But at least everybody got enough. It would have been nice if they would have called to say they weren’t coming though, so I did spend so much money.

Karen 4 years ago

I get so dang angry about this. It has to be at the top of my list of pet peeves!! I want to just scream and if I invite 20 kids, I literally only get one RSVP!!

Vanessa Jubis 4 years ago

I hate when people do this :( So inconsiderate…


Polly 4 years ago

I’m so late on reading this….much like the fuckers who were so late on or lack there of RSVP’ing. I’d like to share my hatred of lazy fucks… mom and mother-in-law hosted a baby shower for me and asked if they could use my phone number as the RSVP contact. That was fine. However, I had 3 people RSVP and 31 showed up. WTF? Seriously? The ass kicker you might ask? We had enough food for 32 people. Fuckers. Just sayin’

Lori Z. 4 years ago

It’s especially fun when your daughter’s birthday falls in the start of summer holidays and you can’t nag the people who aren’t responding and then an extra 12 kids show up…

Just sayin

Kate with Twice Treasured 4 years ago

It’s not just kid’s birthdays. In general, people suck at RSVPing. It drives me nuts!

CrazyNutsMom 4 years ago

I’m sorry, I’m a mom who sucks at RSVPing. Basically because our life is so busy sometimes, I don’t know until last minute if we can do things or not. I’m working on being better about it.

lornadoone 4 years ago

I am considering including the following on the RSVP line of future invitations:

“All are encouraged to attend, but food and favors will be reserved for those who RSVP.”

Basically, I’m saying, “If you can’t bother to RSVP, I’m going to exact a small amount of satisfaction by not letting you have cake.”

Cathleen 4 years ago

Commitment issues!! That’s all it really is, lol.

Demika Caldwell 4 years ago

OMG! It’s refreshing to learn that it’s not just a “black” thing. I thought it was just black people that had a problem with RSVP’ing and being late for events, which is another topic. However, I’m with you that it only takes a few seconds to RSVP especially with all the different ways to communicate these days. What’s really irritating, is when you send an evite, the peron opens it and never responds? Really?

BN 4 years ago

I book birthday parties as my job I hear this multiple times a day!!! I have decided that the moms invited to the party are too damn lazy to pick up the phone for 3 minutes to let the party mom if they will be attending, its too funny I have suggested to MANY moms that state they dont want to send out invites to just do a facebook event lol seeing most people are on there once a day they have to click on something or it will stay at the top of their page reminding them about the upcoming party. It is nearly impossible to plan correctly when you have no idea how many people may be coming to the dang party so moms stop being so lazy call email or text the party mom so she know how many people to prepare for some ladies plan their parties 6 months in advance and put alot of time and effort into it so help them out and let them know who will be attending :)

Rachael 4 years ago

YES! I have been totally flummoxed by this for years. What is WRONG with people?

Marta 4 years ago

I like to put emails on the invites because a lot of people (and definitely me) find that easier. Than you can email them whenever without worrying about what time it is etc. Plus, I hate talking on the phone.

    Mommy Shove 4 years ago

    I totally agree. I always include an email address in the RSVP. Besides, that gives me a written record for when I lose my notes with the list of replies. I also hate to talk on the phone and when I think to reply it’s usually late at night, so email is best for me.

Mommy Shove 4 years ago

I just threw my son’s birthday party. Because of the issues with RSVPing I’ve had in the past, I created an Evite, a facebook event, sent out emails and snail mail invites. I still ended up calling more than half of the people on the list. The difference between 20 and 45 is HUGE with food and ordering cake.

I don’t know why people can’t just click or call.

I usually wait until a few days before (son is often sick) but I always respond- it’s a courtesy. And people that invite me to parties are usually people I like, so I don’t want to be inconsiderate to them. It’s a two way street, people.

Jennifer 4 years ago

I’ve started putting things like, “Let me know if you can make it.” The sad thing in our town is that not many people do parties. We are, what, like four months into the school year and my daughter has had ONE birthday invitation and that was from one of the girl scouts. Since people don’t do parties they don’t come to them. It is so weird.

Tigerlily 4 years ago

My boyfriend’s sister was probably mad that I didn’t RSVP to her son’s party last month. Good. I thought it was pretentious of her to include that on our invitation. The invitation was unnecessary to begin with. We’re practically neighbors and she knows my son always shows up to her lame parties that her Mommy pays for. Get a job, loser.

stephanie 4 years ago

I just sent invites for my daughter’s bday party. I brought in cookies for her class and the invites with them. I have yet to get any rsvps and they were sent in 2 days ago. Her party is 2 days away, and have no clue how many pizzas I’m going to need. We’re having it at pizza hut so I guess I’ll just wait and see. You guys are going to hate me but I’m normally the one who calls the day before or the day of, depending when I remember. Rsvping always tends to skip my mind. But I try to make sure call at least a few hours before hand. However,I didn’t realize I was supposed to call if I wasn’t attending. And I never go if I didn’t call and say I was coming. The one thing that does get on my nerves are the goodie bags. When did goodie bags become a have to at parties? I refuse to do them. I even put on the invitations that we would not have goodie bags. I can’t stand them. Instead, we’re doing a handful of games with small cheap prizes. I know some will not agree with me on that, but I don’t care. I shouldn’t have to buy other children gifts and snacks when I’m also supplying food, drinks, a place, cake, and my daughters gifts as well. But that is just my opinion. I will however start trying to call sooner, and call if I’m not attending.

Sara 4 years ago

Coming from a huge family, parties were always whoever shows up, shows up. My mom used to make a big pot of pasta/tray of lasagna/order pizzas and open the door. Every party was an open house type thing, and we all had a good time. Since all my kids were born around the same time of year, we have one big party (at a park usually), and we invite all our friends and their families. Goodie bags are usually whatever falls out of a piñata, and gifts are never necessary.

Parties should be fun, and stressing myself out about RSVPs is not fun. Yeah, it means I can only serve certain foods, but skipping the stress is worth it.

Mama and the City 4 years ago

I am the total opposite. I do not freak out if, after doing all those million things a day, forget to do one. If a mom hosting it, she would know and hopefully won’t judge, we’re on the same boat.

Erika 4 years ago

I completely understand and agree with you! We need to know so we know how many people to plan for. I would personally like them to RSVP whether they’re coming or not…but don’t NOT RSVP and then show up anyway.
You’d think that if they’d planned any parties they would understand?!?

Cassie 4 years ago

I just hosted a Bunco party on Friday. I sent out the invites a month in advance and only 6 people had RSVP’d by last Monday. Since Bunco is a game that requires there to be 12 people, this was more than a tad irritating! Figure it out people, it’s just being respectful of someone else’s time!!

Nina 4 years ago

Ugh! Agree! Especially annoys me when I see someone has viewed on evite but never responds. What’s up with that!?

Candace 4 years ago

Although now that I’ve read so many vehement replies about people not RSVPing maybe I’ll try a little harder to *know* if we can make it to a party and RSVP on time… I really am shocked at how angry people are about this.

Ally 4 years ago

It is the question with no answer that haunts those of us that see an rsvp for what it is – A REQUEST FOR US TO REPLY! Why else did they take the time to write it on there? And no, they don’t see you as an “exception”. I don’t get it either. I would rather have someone reply with a “maybe” than not at all! I am getting quite a kick out of the replies from both sides of this argument. I was brought up to treat an RSVP like common courtesy – you know, being polite, not being rude. That thing that seems to be so lost in today’s world. Seriously, in the days of text messaging & email, you don’t even have to make a phone call!

Heather 4 years ago

For my daughter’s 7th birthday I got lots of RSVP’s….the day of the party. Oh, and they were all no’s. Yeah that was awsome, espically since I had put regrets only. My daughter was crushed, and we had just been to several of the invitees parties, so they could have just told me there! So rude!

Candace 4 years ago

I’m really bad about RSVPing. I always wait until the last minute and sometimes forget all together, although I DO feel inconsiderate when I forget to RSVP. The reason I wait so long is because now that I have two very small children I never know if I’m going to be able to go an event, especially if it’s “adults only.” My DH isn’t big on social events in general, so talking him into going only proves successful occasionally.

In my defense, before I had kids I *usually RSVPed before or on the deadline. My parents don’t always RSVP either, so maybe I get it from them. I guess I was raised to view most functions as not a big deal if I don’t go.

I think only about 3 people RSVPed my older son’s birthday party the first year, and only 1 person did the second, so I figure this is a pretty common thing, and I shouldn’t get bent out of shape if people don’t RSVP.

I’m not waiting for something “better” to come along to do the day of the event when I don’t RSVP. I’m usually wavering back and forth about whether or not to go at all… I know, I know, do everyone a favor and RSVP my regrets and don’t show my inconsiderate, asshole face, right? Lol! I know that’s what you’re thinking, but I’m okay with that.

Stacy 4 years ago

I have a friend who ordered invitations to her daughter’s birthday party in the wee early hours of the morning while fighting insomnia. She couldn’t believe it when the invites arrived, and she saw that she had left off the date AND the time.

She heard from every single guest. :) I think she is going to do this for every invitation from here on out!

Lynn from For Love or Funny 4 years ago

Jill, you made me laugh out loud with this one. So true!

cindafuckingrella 4 years ago

Well. Just read your post after having sent a reply 5 days late for a kid’s birthday party. In all fairness – if that helps at all – the party is not for another week but hey – I own up to being one of those lazy, ungrateful, rude, inconsiderate assholes that you all are very busy HATING so much. Is it hard to send a little message via mail or phone? No. Does it take long? No. Am I intentionally trying to hurt someone’s feelings? No! So why then?
Well. I am lazy. Keep thinking “Oh, must get that done. Tomorrow”. A bit forgetful. “Shit, that was tomorrow?!!” Just not always on top of things. “Damn, where did I put the baby?”
It slipped, ok?? I totally agree that it is rude and complete assholish behavior but could we take the hating down a notch? Have some compassion for those of us that hanging in there by the fingernails. Spread some love, ladies. Sheesh.

Jo 4 years ago

K, I’m a mom of two teens (15 & 19) I can handle the other mom duties, but the RSVP has always alluded me and still does..

Carpool Goddess 4 years ago

I agree! It drives me crazy that they won’t take the time or wait till the very last minute to do so. I’ve noticed the fastest way to get an rsvp is to send an evite.

Tigerlily 4 years ago

I grew up in a family who didn’t even use party invitations! Yet somehow, hordes of people would show up. The whole concept of R.s.v.p was completely unknown to me (not kidding) until recently, when my son was invited to a classmate’s party. I called and confirmed out of common courtesy, but I found the idea a bit ridiculous to be perfectly honest. It took me a few days to get to it. I’m stubborn as a mule, and set in my ways. I was pissed that I had to call to attend a party. I thought people were just supposed to show up with a gift. This is all new to me, but I get it. People want to know who’s going to show up and who’s not so they can plan accordingly. I still think R.s.v.p’ing is stupid, but I do it anyways. I’m not a total bitch. :)

    Candace 4 years ago

    I agree! Thank you for offering a different, much less rigid point of view. As a society we are a bit uptight about these things.

Emily 4 years ago

I’m hosting a toddler party on Friday…and I’ve had 1 RSVP out of like 25 invites. I kinda wondering what the heck I should plan for…glad you wrote this post before I did! It was quite literally at the tip of my blogging fingers!

S Club Mama 4 years ago

agree!! I cannot stand when people don’t RSVP whether it’s a book party, birthday party, wedding (that’s probably the most annoying), whatever. Call. Email. Morse Code. Whatever. Just plan.

Loukia 4 years ago

Totally. I have no idea why some people find it so hard!

Stephanie 4 years ago

My mom always said RSVPs were only for if you were coming, so they would know for sure. Obviously, after this post, I know that was not correct. oops!

shawn main 4 years ago

i hate most when people call or email and say yes they will be there, for sure, and tell me how many people, then i buy all the stuff, and at the last minute they tell me something came up, or whatever, and then i have all this food and goodie bags and tons of cupcakes, and 1/2 the people to eat them. and its not like i didnt keep them up to date, i send out invitations, then i email them closer to date, then i text them a couple days before to remind them, and they say they are so excited to be coming, yet the day of, ??? i would rather someone wait till closer to the party to let me know, cause i figure at least one family who said they would come didnt, so it evens out, but for a person to not bother letting them know they will be there at all, and showing up, thats just rude

Tatianna 4 years ago

Yes, I am one of those bitches/assholes/rude people that sometimes do not rsvp to parties when they are not going, and if I am coming then I give notice on the cut-off date. (By the way, if you want people to respond right away then say RSVP tomorrow!)
People, calm down. I am a working mom who is having marital problems, a child tested for autism, parents in a home, and many other issues. Believe me, confirming attendance party is the last thing on my to-do list. I will try to make it if I remember. Instead of being judgemental and condescending try having a little empathy, not everyone can be the perfect guest.

Jennifer 4 years ago

I seem to be in the minority, but I don’t care if I get an RSVP or not. I plan to have enough for all invited, and if there are extras then we keep them. The two parties my 6 year old have ever had were small and inexpensive, and we didn’t get anything that we couldn’t eat/use at home.

I also don’t RSVP to the few my daughter gets invited to, mostly due to the fact its often not in our budget to buy something for another child. It’s embarrassing to try and explain to my child, let alone another parent, that we can’t afford it.

    Tarina 4 years ago

    THIS!!! is exactly how I feel. Exactly.

      Jennifer 4 years ago

      Glad to know I am not alone! :) I know it bugs the crap outta some people, but I will never have any type of function that requires an exact amount of people… I am just not that sophisticated lol

        Tarina 4 years ago

        Im the same way – even our wedding reception was a barbeque party at a local park! Too much hassle counting plates/heads, and if one poor kid only gets one slice of pizza, then he gets a bigger piece of cake ~They’re really only there to play and have fun anyways!

Kristin 4 years ago

I don’t usually respond right away because I check plans with my husband and want to be sure I won’t have to back out – which I find more annoying than a late RSVP.

I also always have a date for “RSVP by” and I call people who haven’t replied. I don’t think people actually wait around for something better, I think it just goes to a back file in their heads. It happens to me with all sorts of to-dos.

And I don’t mind at all if someone doesn’t bring a gift – it’s not an expectation. And I would never want someone to not come because they think gifts are expected. It can really be a hardship to buy even a ten dollar gift for several parties.

Liz Gosson 4 years ago

That’s why we just do cake and ice cream parties. I overinvite, and if not everyone shows up then that is more cake and ice cream for everyone else.

Jess 4 years ago

This is the ultimate question of motherhood entertaining…is it not?! It’s amazing to see throngs of people RSVP to rub their junk on other people or drink themselves into oblivion, but throw in a jumpy jump, birthday cake, and a insert-age-here-year-old and you’re fucked.

Lisa 4 years ago

I never threw birthday parties for my children, because when my son was in the 2nd grade one of his classmates threw a party. His mother had the house elaborately decorated with a halloween theme because the little girl’s birthday was close to the holiday. She had beautiful gift bags for every child she had invited, which was every child in the class, maybe 25 kids. The only four children at that party were the birthday girl, a neighborhood friend, a child belonging to one of the mom’s friends and my son, the only child from her class who showed up. I felt so bad for that little girl. We did fancy fun family birthdays with one or two close friends included, but never a class birthday…because of that day.

Manic Motherhood 4 years ago

Last year we had a huge party for my parents 50th, nearly 100 people RSVPd with yes. I thought I’d finally cracked the RSVP code. I didn’t even complain when some emailed the night before to say they were coming, despite the fact that this was a nice, catered party.

64 people showed.

I wanted to call the 35 who didn’t show up and ask them if they wanted the leftovers from the caterer and my sister said no. Obviously? She’s the nice one.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Clearly, this is not the site for you. Buh-bye.

Jenn S 4 years ago

There is a weird trend I’ve noticed here in Iowa and I don’t know if it occurs other places…my kids have come home with invites on a Tues or Weds for a party that Fri or Sat. Um, what kind of notice is that? It’s happened many times over the years. Anyone else have this happen?

Leah 4 years ago

Oh my God, have you been spying on me? My son is having a bday party this saturday, and the rsvp said please call by the 6th. Most called earlier in the month, but one lady called ON the 6th. In the meantime, we had tentatively called another kid, because this was a party we had paid 150$ for!!!. Can anyone guess how that went over?


Jane 4 years ago

I do make an effort to RSVP for any parties that she gets invited to that fall on my weekends (if they include a phone no or email address – no all do which is odd). But I can’t be responsible for her dad not RSVPing, I tell him the parties are on and give him the invitation, after that it’s his problem. We’re not married anymore and I am no longer his personal secretary.

At our wedding when I followed up on RSVP’s I had a lot of people say ‘oh of course we’re coming, how could you think otherwise?’ Like I was supposed to read their minds and know that they where coming.

More then anything I hate people that say they are coming and don’t turn up. I am a christmas baby and I will never forget how hurtful it was when no one turned up to my birthday party when I was a kid. My mum rang the other mums that had rsvp’d for their kids and they all had excuses – we were away, it clashed with a family event etc. After that she let me have my birthday party early before school ended and then we’d do a family thing on the day.

Gigi 4 years ago

This is my biggest pet peeve EVER – and not even for children’s party’s – we’ve hosted lots of adult events over the years and CANNOT get people to respond. I’ve chalked up to everyone I know either being thoughtless, arrogant or rude. Needless to say, we don’t host very many events anymore.

RVE 4 years ago

What about those that RSVP for Little Jenny, BRING additional family members, AND expect the siblings to get a Goody BAG?!?!
Seriously?? I even had an older sibling-that came in tow with the actual invitee-question why I had given a goody bag to younger siblings at our most recent party! I replied with: WELL, THOSE younger siblings and their family members were INVITED! SO I only have enough goody bags your sister and the other kids that were invited and RSVPd. She walked right to her mom and mom gave me a dirty look!
WHATEVER!! My child still had a blast!

NoDramaMama 4 years ago

Ack. I am so guilty of this. Moms hunt me down for it. *hangs head in shame*

I will never do it again, promise!

Christina Beana 4 years ago

I agree!!! Can I add two things? It’s embarassing to the point of just not hosting parties: 1) when a mom shows up with a sibling instead, because the kid that was invited got grounded at the last second, and 2) kids, wonderful kids, asking if they can take home the left-overs for their family. It’s a sad day when kids can’t just enjoy being kids…

sheri 4 years ago

Not just kid’s parties but anything now days people just don’t RSVP very rude if you ask me

Jen 4 years ago

I have found that if I include my email address on an invite, people will RSVP but not if I include my phone number.

erin@mommyonthespot 4 years ago

Oh, yes. Don’t even get me started. I married into a family that does not observe the fine art of the RSVP. *cringe*

Chelsea 4 years ago

Unfortunatly RSVPs are a thing of past. About a 1/4 of people I invited to my wedding RSVP I had to physically ring the rest and ask are you coming. We have work functions no one RSVP than everyone turns ups, as for kids parties if I know yes or no I ring immediately. If its a maybe I let them know maybe and get back to them, mainly to let them know my kids did bring it home. I’m a pedantic RSVPer as I even RSVP to things on Facebook.

Johanna 4 years ago

I especially am fond of the guests who don’t RSVP and then show up with a sibling (or two) in tow!

No, you can’t drop off your nonswimming 3 and 5 year old sibs at my kid’s SWIMMING party for a few minutes while you run errands!

    Jennifer 4 years ago

    We had a pool party for my 6 year old this summer, and I made sure to put on the invitations that the parent needed to stay with the child/children because it was a swimming party. I had my own kids to keep an eye on and I was not going to be responsible for anyone else’s kids drowning. Rude, maybe, but I am SO not for supervising other peoples kids, especially ones I don’t know

JG 4 years ago

I never understood this, either. I used to have big parties for the girls, but now they are much smaller. I once used “rsvp” but now I just call the parent directly. It is easier and quicker.

Barb 4 years ago

Non responders is why it is important to hold parties and invite the kids your child knows and LIKES, not just a group.

As a professional clown for over 20 years I have seen Countless Parties where children were overwhelmed by people or disappointment when ultimately the goal is to celebrate their special day.

One way to get around this is to at the beginning of the year ask the teacher to have ONE SESSION ON Manners. If each class got back to the meaning of politeness it could make life So much easier for all the world. Think what a pleasant place it could be if people showed up for commitments, (RSVP) Said Please when kids wanted to play with video games, or parents said Thank you EACH TIME a child responded positively.

sigh. . . such is the things dreams of a grandmother are made of.

Cindy Lopez 4 years ago

No one RSVP’s to ANYTHING anymore, certainly not limited to kids’ bday parties – not to weddings, showers, Christenings, Ugly Sweater Christmas parties, adult birthdays or engagement parties. I really feel as if people are waiting to see if your invitation is the best one before they commit to an event!

Heather 4 years ago

Even worse is the people who read the evite and never respond. Hellooo, I know you read the damn evite, just click “yes” or “no!” One friggin click is all I need!

Angela Willis 4 years ago

As a party planner, this is so infuriating!!
I think that almost every party I have ever given my children. There have been at least half a dozen people that will call me on the day, a couple of hours before the party and ask if it is too late for their kid to come… a few have even asked if a sibling or cousin come with them! I am too nice and let them come, b/c there are a few times that NO children have come to the party (so sad).
It is rude not to reply. I even wonder at times, if people even know what it means to RSVP!! Unfortunately, it keeps me from personalizing any of the favors for the kids, because I never know who is gonna be there.

Shell 4 years ago

Oh, this irritates me.

Especially b/c I give the option to email or TEXT me an RSVP.

Who can’t find the time to freaking TEXT and say their kid will/won’t be there.

KLM 4 years ago

Reading through this long list, I’m convinced that the only mom’s in the country who RSVP are your readers.

lhelen70 4 years ago

I’ve only had this problem with the kids birthday parties — one year I actually called everyone because NO ONE responded for my daughter’s birthday party.

Lola 4 years ago

Oh, no! People don’t rsvp and show up? I just sent out invitations to everyone in my son’s preschool and only 4 people replied with ‘yes’. Are you saying they can just show up?? This is my first experience with this, I really hope there will be no surprises.
On another hand, I often wait till the last minute to respond, it’s not easy to plan anything with kids, something always comes up at the very last minute.

Jenny 4 years ago

I don’t typically RSVP immediately, but I do RSVP in a timely manner. I think that this problem is common for any plans. No one wants to finalize anything anymore, they ARE waiting to make sure nothing better comes along. It’s extremely rude. I get that people are busy, we are too (4 kids, etc.) but there’s really no excuse for being unwilling to commit to plans IMO.

Jennifer 4 years ago

I am the mom that *ALWAYS* forgets. I don’t know why. Could be my ADD. Could be I’m exhausted making sure that my kids are dressed, fed, where they need to be when they need to be there with what they need to take. Could be I am chronically unorganized and fly by the seat of my pants (refer to first “could be”).
I had a friendship that pretty much ended because of a birthday RSVP issue. Here’s something I’ve wanted to say for years and finally *this* is the place to say it. Lighten the hell up. Yes, its manners. I’ve read Elizabeth Post. I get it. I get that you need to plan. But here is the cold hard facts of life……some of us moms are just trying to make sure we are meeting our kids needs. End of story. Sometimes life is too much and sucks and we don’t want to get out of bed but do because our kids need us to. So, if we seem frazzled and ditzy and tired and stressed and, well you get the point…cut a person some freakin’ slack and get over the RSVP. Its a kid’s birthday party, not a wedding. And let’s face in the end this is really one of those things in life that is out of our circle of control and is it worth it to waste time stewing over people who don’t act like we think they should?

    Chelle 4 years ago


      Lola 4 years ago

      Yeah, I am with you on this. Let’s blame it on ADD!

    Tigerlily 4 years ago

    I completely agree with you. I’m not a planner, never have been, so it’s just not in my nature or on my list of priorities to reply to a stupid R.s.v.p. I do it, but I die a little. Call me rude, selfish, an asshole, a bitch with bad manners, etc,. I just don’t care about proper party etiquette.

    PSG 2 years ago

    OK, but in the time it took you to type that response you could have sent an email or made a phone call. That’s the point.

Tori 4 years ago

So my mom doesn’t bother with written invites to anything anymore and only deals with phone calls and she always has an exact number which is great because she usually has to borrow chairs from my brother and I.
After my son’s 1st bday I love FB evites with my friends because I get an answer from them. I had mailed out some really cute handmade invites and wasn’t hearing back but from like 2 people. After I did the evites (and I had the list where only my husband and I could see who had responded) we had an what we thought was a small range and all the people who said yes showed and the one person who said maybe didn’t.
Truthfully growing up I didn’t realize just HOW much RSVPing meant to the people as I didn’t go to that many things (and my mom would call while I was at school and I didn’t know til later in life) and so I wasn’t directly taught about it. Shortly after high school I saw my niece have to be turned away from being able to go to a party because it was a budgeted out specific number of kids party for girls and her mom didn’t try to RSVP til the day before. My niece was crushed because she thought she was going to be able to go. That was when I realized how important it was and RSVP to everything now when asked and try to make it as easy as possible for others to do the same to mine. I still have trouble when it comes to mailing something back though because I am horrible with losing the card before I have a stamp. Any type of mailing I am awful at. In fact I’ve only been able to do it in a decent time frame twice…my wedding and my son’s bday. All the other times I do invites I hand them out to those I don’t have emails or FB for.

Aimee 4 years ago

I have been asking this question since 2001, the year of my oldest son’s first birthday. I DON’T GET IT.

RSVP literally means, “Respond, please.” Not respond if you can make it, or respond if you can’t make it. (That’s “Regrets Only.”) RESPOND. I can’t be the only person whose mother taught her this.

Margaret 4 years ago

I even offer the option of RSVP via email. I do not expect an explanation just a we will or will not attend and we will be bringing x no. of people. I just held a birthday party and had to beg for RSVP’s so that I could figure out how much cake, pizza and drinks to offer. I don’t care about the gift. The presence of my kids’ friends and the fun time are gift enough. I used to do no gift parties but people got funny with me about it so now I leave it up to the attendee.

Jessica 4 years ago

I think it’s because it requires picking up the phone and actually talking to a person.

Perspective Parenting 4 years ago

Ugh! The no RSVP drives me nuts, as do the comments to my husband of me complaining when people don’t RSVP. I don’t get it. I may not always respond the day I get the invite, but I always respond. I just got the iPhone 4s and am now wondering if Siri can RSVP for me, or text or email the kids parents who aren’t responding. Hmmmm…..

Julia’s Child / Sarah P. 4 years ago

My friend and I were just talking about this: what’s worse, no RSVP or RSVP “yes” and then fail to show up? That happens too, and helps nobody.

    Scary Mommy 4 years ago

    I’d say the latter is even worse, but they both are asshole moves!


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