The Top 10 Worst Birthday Party Parents

by Lindsey Barnes
Originally Published: 
Two girls and a boy blowing candles out candles on a cake at a birthday party
Image via Shutterstock

Ah, birthday parties. What a wonderful way to get together with friends and family to celebrate each year of your precious little one’s life.

A few years in though, shit gets weird. The precious little ones go off to school, and now in addition to your beloved family, you are also including their new friends at these celebrations. And these new friends don’t come alone (cause that would be strange). They come with one, or sometimes both, parents. People you may or may not be that familiar with from your day to day passings, but with whom you become increasingly more familiar through a series of interactions at your kids’ birthday parties. Some will become your friends. Most will not.

Here is a list of the Top 10 Worst Birthday Party Parents:

1. RSVP Optional Parent: We sent you a card in the mail, chased it down with four email reminders, but still you keep us guessing. Will you or won’t you? Can you or can’t you? Are you coming or not? It’s really not that hard. Figure it out and let me know! Preferably before the day of, when you show up with no notification.

2. The Early Birds: Hey, what has two thumbs and likes to party? This girl. But, if I ask you to come to my party at 1:00, you aren’t doing anyone any favors by arriving at 12:45. We just arrived. We’re setting up, taking family pictures, fixing the kid’s hair. And here you are. Standing there looking like you want me to entertain you. Not gonna happen, my friend. And by “friend,” I mean person I do not actually know. Please, just hang out outside for another 14 minutes, instead of sitting there looking bored. Of course you’re bored, there’s no party going on yet!

3. Dad who didn’t read the invite correctly: Great work dad, you’ve managed to get the kid washed, dressed and out of the house to give mom a break. I should probably take this opportunity to tell you that the party you are attending is not actually the one you RSVP’d to. I don’t know you, my husband doesn’t know you and your kid doesn’t look familiar to my kid. You are at the wrong party. We get it, it’s a big space. There are four other parties going on here at this very moment. Just make sure you figure it out before the pizza arrives, or prepare to feel super awkward when you read the kid’s name on the cake… and realize you were headed to Jacob’s party, but you are currently watching Ava blow out her candles.

4. Stripper Mom: Hey, I get it… we weren’t always milk machines whose primary goal is to not forget a child at the playground, while running to get another to a class less than ten minutes late. Some of us even still manage to shower most days. And hey, I like a bit of mascara when I think of it. Come to think of it, I wear jeans most days of the week… like real jeans, not even pajama jeans (though I have considered them). I put in a little effort. I like dressing up too. However, I believe that there is a time and a place for dressing up, like say Friday and Saturday nights, when you’re out at a trendy restaurant or nightclub just before that “G-D I’m old” feeling sets in and you have to head home before midnight because, well because it’s midnight and that’s pretty late and you’re exhausted. (Did we seriously used to do this every weekend? That’s nuts.)

But where was I… oh yeah, dressing up, totally great in some circumstances. You know when it’s not that great? How about a small kid’s birthday party? We’re all pulling our kids in and out of the ball pit, then throwing them onto a trampoline in a slightly too warm, over-crowded gym. This is when we dress for comfort. It is 2:00 in the afternoon and stripper mom actually looks better suited for a Vegas Saturday afternoon pool party than the kiddie gym party. It just looks silly here.

5. Social Butterfly: As I said in the beginning, birthday parties are a great time to get to know other parents. Please enjoy yourself. That’s why you’re here. Well, that and to watch your kid. Oh yeah, remember your kid? He’s the one that just poured a tub of glue onto the birthday girl’s head. Yeah, you might want to do something about that. Then you can go back to your conversation.

6. One Way Mirror Parent: The interesting thing about a one way mirror is that while I can see myself, from the other side, you can only see me. Now let’s pretend that mirror also divides our children, so while I can see my kid and her actions, you can only see my kid and her actions. So when my kid, after being pushed and pummeled by your little lad six or seven times finally decides she’s had enough and blows back, you are very quick to rush over and angrily point out that my kid just pushed your kid. How interesting.

7. The Parents of the Kid Who Thinks It’s HER Party (but it’s not): Hi guys, welcome to our child’s celebration. Enjoy the activities! Have a good time! I see your little one is enjoying herself. She seems to have made herself very comfortable in the birthday boy’s seat (as denoted by it’s rather conspicuous placement at the head of the table and clearly marked with a bevy of ribbons, streamers and balloons). Yes, but an honest mistake. Oh, and she seems to have commandeered the birthday boy’s special birthday hat as well. Yes, it does look smashing on her. Oh, and look at that, she’s helping herself to his cake. Isn’t that precious? And now the birthday boy is asking her to give him his hat back, and get out of his chair. Well articulated, Birthday Tot, but the kid that thinks it’s her party isn’t listening. As for her parents, well, their lack of action is noticeable. Ah yes…by not getting out of his chair, eating his cake and not giving him his hat back, she has officially made the birthday boy cry… at his own party. And you continue to stand there watching and doing nothing. Thanks for that. Now I have to calm down a crying birthday boy when all you really needed to do was, hmmmm, how did one of the other parents so nicely put it? Oh yes, “Get that f#$king kid out of the birthday boy’s seat. Are you f#$king kidding me?” Yes. Please do that, won’t you?

8. Hungry Hungry Hippo: This one does not actually refer to anyone’s particular size. This one refers to the parents who take it upon themselves to push their way in front of the three employees efficiently distributing pizza to the guests, to really go above and beyond and start helping to serve the pizza to… oh, no, wait…you were just taking that one for yourself. Nevermind.

9. Cake Boss: So, the aunt of the birthday boy has made a pretty spectacular cake. It’s got two layers and on top there is a 3-D volcano made out of cake spouting Twizzler lava and marshmallow puffs of smoke, coated in grey buttercream. But please, disregard the time and effort that went into that when you loudly proclaim to the host mom, “Oh, your sister was very stingy with the icing.” I can assure you, the sister was not stingy with anything but bitch slaps, which she managed to hold back one, despite her deepest desires. For the record, cake bosses don’t only critique the cake, but will also let you know if they’ve had better pizza, prefer a different soft drink, and diss the snacks on offer. Hey, cake boss. What’s the best kind of food? That’s right, free food. Pipe down over there.

10. Porn Party Parents: Hey there you two. That’s really sweet that after five or ten years of marriage you both still have the hots for each other. But honestly, your smooching during the parachute was a little too hands on for some of the smaller onlookers. In addition, your grinding during that freeze dance party was inappropriate. And frankly, when you seductively feed your spouse cake in front of everyone else, it really just puts us all off the cake… and I hate being put off the cake. Just stop. It’s creepy behavior for a kiddie party.

If you’ve met any of these parents or know someone who has, please share. If you haven’t, you probably are one of these parents, so please share… You’re famous!

Related post: 10 Ways Birthday Parties Suck

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