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)

From Around the Web


Tina M 1 year ago


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

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.

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 3 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 3 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.

Tigerlily 4 years ago

I couldn’t have put it better myself!

Ivy 4 years ago

I agree I am always the fucked up one who forgets til the last minute. This last bday party I got lost trying to find the party venue, after I had just come from a funeral! But, my daughter bought a gift and I called 2 ask the other mom if she needed anything befor I got there!

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?

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.

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.

jeri 4 years ago

Oh, I had a kid tell me that! Her parents were standing right there and never corrected her. Unfortunately she came because, I guess, she couldn’t find something better to do!

Melissa 4 years ago

Me too! I will embarrass the sh*t out of anyone who doesn’t RSVP. I was a lunatic for my baby shower. People say it isn’t the duty of the guest of honor, but my friends were nice enough to throw me a beautiful shower. I wasn’t going to make then track down my ignorant family members too.

Jaci 4 years ago

$700 on a child’s birthday party?!? Judging your kid’s friends by the caliber of gifts they bring?

Wow. Glad I’m lower middle class.

Jaci 4 years ago

Do we have the same friends?!? I hosted a soup/salad/just hang out with me dinner and invited 22 ladies – 4 showed up. I got the same lame ass excuses from women who whine constantly about needing to get out away from their kids.

The best? “I have to work in the morning.” So you can’t make DINNER the night before?!? WTF?

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?!?

Sarah 4 years ago

Perfect!!!! Definately using this idea for DDs 2nd birthday!!!!

Mandy 4 years ago

I know exactly what you mean. My daughters birthday is the day after my MIL. Every year I had to listen to her bitch because we would plan her party on the Saturday closest to her actual birthday. Dear ‘ole 50 something MIL would always bitch to me once invites were sent out that she wanted to have her birthday do on THAT day, but now she can’t because the family is all going to my DD’s birthday. She lived in a cottage on our property, DD’s birthday was always early afternoon, why not just invite the family to stay on and celebrate with you from late afternoon into the night? At least you would more chance of people pitching because they are already there!!!! Seriously GROW UP woman! She has never had a “do” during the day, always been at night so I just don’t understand what the problem was. But she never once complained to DH or to me in front of him.

Well. She doesn’t have that problem anymore – we immigrated to another country! Ha ha!

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

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!

Jennifer 4 years ago

The last 2 parties my daughter got invited to and went to it said NO GIFTS on the invite…. I just couldn’t do it…. Parents are paying all this one to entertain and feed my kid and the poor birthday child gets no gifts, wtf is up with that???

Jennifer 4 years ago

hahahahaha love that! on invitation write….
when you all to RSVP (or email whateve..) the location of the party will be revealed!!!!!! I am going to use that one for my sons party in Feb!!!!

Jennifer 4 years ago

Totally agree, but then I’m one of those bitches that if you don’t RSVP, I’ll be calling you until you answer your damn phone. You don’t want to RSVP then I’ll make you uncomfortable lmfao.

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.

mommy23girls 4 years ago

Isn’t that going a bit far? Is it really a bad thing if kids find out early on in life that not everyone is going to be your friend and you may not like everyone in your class either! Making it a rule to invite everyone is crazy , especially when the economy is so bad!

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 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.

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. :)

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!

Lola 4 years ago

That’s the thing – I welcome people to judge my ‘lifestyle’ as much as they wish to. I just know for fact that your kid will pick a store-bought toy over a cheap home made gift, but if it makes you feel good about yourself saying all these idealistic things, then be my guest :)

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!

Janeen 4 years ago

I had people show up at my wedding without presents and yeah, most of them didn’t RSVP either. Granted I pulled the wedding off in 8 weeks time but still, I sent the invites fairly early for it. I think I got maybe two back. Makes me glad the invitations cost nothing when I got the tux rentals.

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.

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!

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

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

Tarina 4 years ago

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

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.

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.

Tarina 4 years ago

:) And that is why people reading blogs or posts or whatever need to step down from their high horses as they read a reply and use respectful replies. Even if a mother is overprotective, who are we to judge her reasons or motivations. There are always things going on behind closed doors that we aren’t privy to and it sort of makes you sound like an ass when you jump to conclusions and skip to the hypothetical sad lonely kid with no friends in the end :) Skipping one birthday party because your mom says no isn’t going to make any kid an outcast. That’s a bit exaggerated.

Tarina 4 years ago

The only comment I’m gonna make at the end of this is — if you dont want people judging your tone or lifestyle, watch what words you use. Real toys? Store-bought toys arent any more real than a gift that a child (with or without his parents’ help) put effort into making cuz he thought his friend would love it. :)

Tarina 4 years ago

You two sort of had a good old fashioned drag out over this lol but yes, the bottom line of what I was saying is actually the last line in your reply, “It’s traditional and logical to make people feel special on their birthday”…… Who ever said that gifts have to be involved to make someone feel special? Last year I took my son and his 2 best friends mini golfing. He told me that was the best birthday he ever had because he was doing something HE loved, with people who love him. There were no gifts from these friends. They laughed and played and joked, and he was NOT disappointed at the end of the day because they hadn’t given him a toy to show/prove their friendship. I think we come from 2 very different backgrounds and lifestyles, and I absolutely do not judge you for throwing such an elaborate party for your kid! In the past, I have absolutely put money into making a huge party with all kinds of decorations and stuff… but doesnt it all just get thrown away a few hours later? The kids had tons of fun, but It seemed so wasteful to me when I did it – From my experience, most kids are just as happy doing something fun with a few close friends than they are at a huge elaborate party with a bunch of people they can’t really spend too much time with at the risk of excluding someone else (i’ve done both). You’d be surprised sometimes what kids decide is the “best idea ever” to celebrate their birthday. It could be a sleepover with a movie and popcorn and pancakes for breakfast. It could be a trip to the zoo, It could be a huge party. In my opinion, for the first 3 or 4 years, parties are all about the grownups, cuz the kids could really care less about all the extra stuff we do to try to make it “awesome”. And after age 5, they have very specific things they think are fun, which may or may not include a party – or gifts – at all :)
The bottom line is, As long as we remember birthday parties are about the KIDS, not us, then whatever the budget, I think all our kids will turn out fine. But teach your kids to be grateful for gifts, not selfish and expectant of them. Birthday, Christmas, whatever the reason. Gifts are just that. Gifts. We dont unwrap “deserves”.

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.

Tarina 4 years ago

I think that is a fantastic way to handle it. We (lately, anyways) have focused more on family during birthdays, and extended an invitation to a few close friends to join the family celebration, but have gotten away from the big hub-bub parties that we used to throw for the oldest.

Tarina 4 years ago

as far as I’ve seen it’s elementary only – atleast in IL. once they reach Jr. High/middle school or high school, I guess all the kids trade phone numbers anyways and tend to stray from typical party invites – as far as school policies, I think once the kids get that old, they just dont care anymore lol

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.

anymommy 4 years ago

Marinka always makes me laugh.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

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

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?

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

My job here is done.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Don’t even get me started on thank you notes.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

As they come in, just respond no, then. For us. Do it for us. Pleeeeaaase? :)

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Yes, agreed. Who wants to actually talk these days?

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Facebook, eh? Might have to try that. If I ever have another party.

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?


Shauna 4 years ago

A little ironic that Comment Luv is pulling up my last post in which I call myself “less than thoughtful most days” :)

Shauna 4 years ago

For you. I will….if I remember.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Oh, you brave soul.

But, isn’t it easier to just respond right away and get it done? Try it. For me.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

I am SO trying that.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago


Scary Mommy 4 years ago

We had that a few years ago- WAY bizarre!

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Ohhhhhh– I haven’t had that yet, but I would NOT react gracefully.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

No, I never have, because then I fear I would assume 15 people would come and they’d never show.

Scary Mommy 4 years ago

Agreed. ESPECIALLY when it’s an Evite. One click, that’s it!

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.

Sharon 4 years ago

hidden, not ridden. Gah!
And, at least I got free wine at that party. Best kid’s party EVER!!!

Lola 4 years ago

Oh, you are so perfect you make me cry. I am sure your children hate real toys and prefer to play with home made gifts as well! Will you invite me to your next charity event?

Sharon 4 years ago

Amen! I just took my daughter to a birthday party this past Sunday. I do not even know what day she got the invitation since I found it ridden in her backpack. I RSVP-ed the day before the party since I thought it would be rude to call the mom at 11 pm on a Friday. Sometimes, kids don’t do what they are supposed to with small envelopes. But my kids are both on the autism spectrum, so maybe it’s just their poor paperwork management skills…
And regarding inviting the whole class, that’s just pure unadulterated bullshit. I’m not inviting kids that fuck with my kid! If I invited them, I’d end up in jail or something…

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!

MommaKiss 4 years ago

Oh, I usually hide the responses on an evite, too – just saying maybe that’s why the person hasn’t replied.

Drives me insane. I will e-mail, call, to follow up – hear nothing – then they just show up.

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…

Jessie 4 years ago

just…wow. People are so inconsiderate :-(

sheri 4 years ago

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

Pamela 4 years ago

The best part of it all is that the mom called and left a message at 11am, the party was at 3pm to tell me her daughter was coming, but could I pick up and drop off she had a class to go to. When I called back she had her older daughter take the call and try to work the logistics – I was not and did not do it. Amazing how the mother who was in a class from 1pm – 5pm was able to bring her and pick her up!

Arnebya 4 years ago

The emphasis we put on celebrating the day someone was born is starting to become as trite as mandatory gifts that are not for or about little baby Jesus at Christmas. I’m sure you don’t believe it’s selfish when someone spends lots of money on a party, then does NOT want gifts. They just want your child to show up, run around, get dirty, high on cake, and go home satisfied. I’ve been that parent. It was wonderful. And I was perfectly clear in what I wrote above, that expecting a gift is not inherently selfish (after all, that’s what we’re taught). But demanding a toy is. Period.

You don’t seem to care about whether the kids enjoy your son’s party; you seem to care about boasting that you’ve overspent so that your kid’s friends’ parents will think you rock at party giving. Note how many times you’ve mentioned the sevenhundreddollarness. Boy, I feel for your kid if he doesn’t recoup that in a shitload of uncrappy gifts. As for being comfortable showing up w/out a gift? No, I never have been. Again, there are times I simply haven’t gone b/c of the inability to buy a gift. There are also times I’ve bought what I could, and times I’ve given the best fucking gift the birthday child got that day (circa 2002 when my finances were the shit!). I suppose you are angry at the random $25 gift card, too b/c that doesn’t put enough effort and thought into what your preshus angel would like? Oooh, oooh, what about a homemade gift from one of his “friends” (as you whisper to your kid: sever all ties come Monday; that construction paper bearing kid is dead to us).

Lola 4 years ago

So, a child is selfish for expecting a toy for his Birthday, but an adult is comfortable bringing their kids to a Birthday party without a present? $700 is spent not just on my kid having fun, but because I care about his friends enjoying the party (care enough to work my ass off for that $700 and spend a lot of my personal time on preparation) and if you show up for a party without a gift or bring something crappy – that’s a proof that you don’t give a damn about my kid and did not take the time or spend (here comes forbidden word) money in order to make my child feel special. Yes, these are freeloaders and I don’t want these type of friends for my child.
I would never go to a Birthday party without a thoughtful gift and I don’t understand anyone who thinks it’s ok. In fact, it’s traditional and logical to make people feel special on their Birthday, not expect that they will take care of you and just be thankful for your presence.

Lola 4 years ago

So, a child is selfish for expecting a toy for his Birthday, but an adult is comfortable bringing their kids to a Birthday party without a present? $700 is spent not just on my kid having fun, but because I care about his friends enjoying the party (care enough to work my ass off for that $700 and spend a lot of my personal time on preparation) and if you show up for a party without a gift or bring something crappy – that’s a proof that you don’t give a damn about my kid and did not take the time or spend (here comes forbidden word) money in order to make my child feel special. Yes, these are freeloaders and I don’t want these type of friends for my child, he can do better.

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.

Tori 4 years ago

KLM……..Of course I would say she can’t come. I never said I wouldn’t.
As far as being overprotective the only thing I’m overprotective about is when it comes to her epilepsy so don’t call it crap. I am way more free and allowing of my child to do stuff.
That response was just to say that IF there was some reason and IF I didn’t want her to go (which would be highly unlikely if she really wanted to) that that’s what I would do. My whole point was that if for WHATEVER reason someone has for not wanting their kid to go to something that rather than just having the kid stay around the house when they know they could be at the party to take them to do something. My child has never NOT got to go to something. Excuse me for forgetting to type in a couple of hypothetical words as I was typing in between playing with my toddler.

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!

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.

Jessie 4 years ago

Did you do it? We’ve had people do that before and I said no-it wouldn’t work for our timing and it’s just plain rude.

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!

Arnebya 4 years ago

Um, Lola. Judge much? No one called you selfish for expecting a gift for your child. Tarina was saying her son was being selfish by exclaiming where’s my gift. Like that’s all there was to it. Like someone HAD to bring a gift. Is there some unwritten rule that says this? While yes, it is typically done (and I guess, expected), is it worth calling people freeloaders if they simply cannot?

Don’t assume when someone does not bring a gift that they are simply cheap or wanting to mooch off your efforts and how much you’ve spent. Spend what YOU want to spend for a nice party, not contingent on what types of gifts (if any) your child receives. I have not taken my kids to parties when we couldn’t afford to get a gift b/c I wasn’t comfortable explaining that I didn’t have anything to spend. Your paying $700 for a child’s party is on you, not his guests. It’s not up to the invitees to make your son “feel special.” That’s your job. You just said you spent all that to make sure the guests are having fun and getting nice take homes. So you’re demanding something in return? Don’t get me wrong; I do understand where you’re coming from (to an extent), but I am not in the least bit disappointed or upset or angry or apt to call people freeloaders when they don’t bring a gift, or, heaven forbid, they show up with a sub-par gift or a duplicate gift — stop the party, he already has that toy, go get another.

Margaret 4 years ago

I’ll tell you why since you asked. I paid for the party and I was not wasting my hard earned money. When 15 people did not RSVP I made up the difference. I don’t feel that it is inviting trouble when I am not the one who violated the social contract. It is plain manners to respond to an invitation. I make the time to respond to my kids’ invitations even though I am just as busy, frazzled, stretched and pulled as the next mom or for that matter dad. It takes seconds to minutes to send and email, click on the evite button or dial the phone and talk to someone. To just show up is beyond inconsiderate not just to the host family but also to one’s own child.

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.

Lola 4 years ago

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

KLM 4 years ago

I’d assume the no show is not the child’s fault and they are likely to be just as disappointed.

KLM 4 years ago

whatever overprotective crap you pull on the kid, at least RSVP to say she can’t make it to the party. That’s all you have to say, she isn’t coming. When you aren’t around she’ll be left explaining that mommy wouldn’t let her or the family had other plans. She’d better get used to that sounds like. Until they stop bothering to invite her because her mom never let’s her come anyway.

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.

Mary 4 years ago

If there was a 15 kid limit, then why invite more than 15 children? That’s asking for trouble.

KLM 4 years ago

Oh, but yes, they’ll show up for a wedding they didn’t RSVP for AND they’ll bring a date/their visiting aunt&uncle, their not invited children AND they’ll make special dietary demands.

(don’t get me wrong, kids at weddings aren’t a problem if the hosts are expecting them, have made accommodations food and beverage wise and the particular children are old/young enough to behave or behave with parental wrangling. My aunts outdoor afternoon family style wedding took into account that she was marrying the youngest sibling and there were a couple dozen nieces and nephews. Much more recently, my 36 year old nieces extremely formal evening wedding followed by fancy dinner and dancing did not include children in the invites. There was a collection of her own nieces and nephews aged 8-12 who had been alter boys, flower girls and jr bridesmaid. They were quite old enough to stay up for the special occasion. Even though for them it ended at 10 when my mom and aunt (their great aunts) took them home for a big cousin slumber party. Their younger siblings had been left with a par of babysitters for a little kid slumber party at one of their homes.

Lola 4 years ago

What? Are you serious? What kind of free loader would use this excuse to show up without a gift? If you are too cheap to buy a toy, just don’t go to a birthday party. I just dropped over $700 on my son’s birthday party to make sure all guests are having fun and get really nice goodie bags and enjoy all the extra activities and you are saying that I’d be the selfish one to expect that people bring gifts to make my son feel special???

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

Haha, I know what you mean!!! Who cares about stupid birthday parties

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.

Chelle 4 years ago


Chelle 4 years ago

Seriously, invite who you KNOW will come. I did themed parties for years! Every fucking thing down to t-shirts for the b-day kid. In 21 years of kids birthdays (21, 17 and 6) I have learned to ask people I know will show in person or by phone. I have gone to every mother loving party, brought gifts, even watched EVERYONES kids at a summer pool party while all the other people I barely knew stood around. Fuck everyone but your birthday baby. Why stress over it?

Dee 4 years ago

oh my gosh. That’s just crazy!! Obviously she has no children. There are lots of adults out there who still feel the world centers around them. I have some family and friends myself that don’t understand they are now adults and therefore don’t need presents. And don’t even get me started on my in laws who left my 3 year old son’s party early because they had a graduation party for the next door neighbor’s kid to go to.

Chelle 4 years ago

My son’s 6th birthday is December 30th. Regardless of the notice, it is 5 days after Christmas and the day before NYE. In our situation we have several different options available when the day comes around because we know what this time of year is like. We have gone to every one of his friends parties and only one of his friends always came to his. THAT was disappointing. So instead we will pass out goody bags at school, all his friends will be there and we will have a special family birthday on the actual day. I raised two kids already and done it all, it’s their special day and it shouldn’t be dependent on the appearance or absence of others.

Tori 4 years ago

I haven’t had this come up with my kids yet because this is my daughter’s first year of school and I guess hers will be the first party invite but I have thought about it and I don’t want her to go then I will probably make plans for same day and tell her sorry honey but we are doing X that day. (Of course I would have to figure out what my reasons are for not wanting her to go too. Are they rational or am I being overprotective, etc?)

Margaret 4 years ago

I actually held a 5th birthday party at a venue where we had a 15 kid limit. When someone who had not RSVPed showed up with their child it was heartbreaking to turn the child away from the activity. They were welcome to stay for cake but could not participate in the fun part of the party.

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?

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.

Arnebya 4 years ago

Well, you learn something new every day (and I’m not being flippant; I’m seriously interested b/c here I was thinking I was just being a thoughtful mom the year I invited all the girls from her class). This is not even remotely a rule here in DC. But let me ask this. Is it elementary only? Or does it not matter?

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.

Tinne from Tantrums and Tomatoes 4 years ago

Oh I hear you on this one. It is so downright rude not to rsvp and then to come unannounced.

Tori 4 years ago

I was one of those kids where only 2 people would show up but my mom would make it awesome. As I got older she just decided to tell me to pick one or two friends then take us somewhere really awesome like Disneyland (we were in so. ca) or Seaworld. It most times cost her less and made me happier than if it’d been a party no one came to (and RSVP was still not adhered to then).

GunDiva 4 years ago

It’s rude and pisses me off when people won’t take the time to do it. I’m not a huge etiquitte person, but this absolutely trips my trigger every time. Lazy sons of bitches.

Arnebya 4 years ago

No, I’m w/you on the gift part. The party, to me, is a party. I want your kids to come have fun w/my kid and celebrate her day. We’ve actually put on the invitations before (gifts not required; some parents have still opted to bring one).

Also, I’m giggling how I’ve responded to like 20 people like this is totally my blog. LOL I’m at work. And bored. And y’all are entertaining. Sue me.

Tarina 4 years ago

I would have included a personal note in that envelope to the parents explaining that it was a formality and due to their childs horrible conduct and physical abuse of your son, he was absolutely NOT invited, unless he came with an apology and atleast one parent who would stay at his side the entire party to keep him in line. But, that’s probably why people don’t like me lol cuz I speak up to those people and expect a response or change based on that conversation.

Jack@TheJackB 4 years ago

Telephone calls- I make them repeatedly. It irritates me but when I get people on the phone I get a definitive answer.

Tarina 4 years ago

most schools in general have policies that if you send invites through the school (ie: handed out in class) that you have to invite everyone (or everyone of a certain sex if its a sleepover) so that it doesnt leave someone feeling left out if they are the only one not invited. Most parents know which of the kids in class their kid likes though, so sending invites to them personally is usually easy enough anyways. In my experience anyway.

Tori 4 years ago

Whenever I do an evite I don’t allow people to see who else has said yes or no. If there are people who don’t get along then I let them know up front that the other person may or may not be coming and they can either chose to or not to come. They may not like each other but if they decide to come then they know to come with manners and just stay away from the other person for the sake of my child.

Arnebya 4 years ago

Deanna — at least yours was during the day. I had a 10 yr old get dropped off during the summer whose parents I had never met (in fact, only my husband had met the child b/c he does school pick up). The girl’s father dropped her off, didn’t get out of the car. FOR A SLEEPOVER. Overnight. With parents you’ve never met. Pickup time the following day was noon. At 2 when no one had retrieved her, she calls the mother who says call the father who says he’ll be there around 5. I’m sorry, what? I’m about the call the people if you don’t come get your kid.

And I’ll say this — I don’t want to purport that I have responded to every invitation timely, or at all. But, I damn sure do my best. I take everything into consideration, and explain up front if there may/may not be a conflict. Everything can’t always be scheduled, emergency appendectomies included. But barring natural disasters and the like, it’s just common courtesy to fucking respond. Even if your response is just an acknowledgement, not a commitment. I’d rather count you as a maybe than a no and you show up or a yes and you don’t show. For the person above who said it throws a wrench in the routine (pardon me; maybe I misunderstood?), going to the actual party would also screw up the routine, no?

Victoria KP 4 years ago

It’s so true. Honestly, I’m done with it. Both of my boys have birthdays in July and we NEVER know who’s coming. Next year, we’re just going to have a family outing to an amusement park.

Marla 4 years ago

I am the kind of person who ALWAYS RSVPs If my child is attending but if they wont be there i don’t call. Not sure whats worse considering that so many people dont call then show up. I like when the parents give you a date to RSVP by it makes sense so that way if you have a lot going on that week and your busy you know you have a deadline lol. However, i despise the 3 day notice for a party…ya you know the one you get in the middle of the week or the day before..ugghhh.

Jen Banks 4 years ago

What about the invite to the party you DON’T want to take your kid to (variety of reasons) do you don’t RSVP then your kid hears about the party and insists on going and you feel like an ass to your kid, the party kid, and the parents. Or is this just me?

Tarina 4 years ago

Am I the only one who is actually a little upset by the parents arguing how rude it is to show up at a party without a gift? Show up without calling, sure that’s rude as hell — but getting pist they didn’t bring your kid another toy to break? Maybe that’s part of why people don’t show up, if you expect them to come bearing gifts. Maybe they can’t afford it. Maybe they arent gift givers. Just be glad their kids are coming to play with yours. I’m pretty sure the kid is happy either way, as long as you explain to them how to be grateful for friends, instead of just presents. I know the first time my son ever asked someone “where’s my present?” we had a REALLY long talk about how selfish he was acting and how that isn’t what parties are about. Sounds like some of the readers here could re-learn that lesson themselves. As it stands, I love this blog, and the original point of the post, RSVP’s is spot on. Those making it about not receiving gifts as well might need an etiquette check themselves. Just my 2 cents.

Arnebya 4 years ago

Seriously? Expelled from kindergarten? So the rule is what exactly? Regardless of how they’re sent, all have to be invited? Or do you just have to send it to their home/give it to the parent directly rather than through school? I’m so bothered by this.

Tori 4 years ago

I like that wording! I think I’ll go change my daughter’s invites right now as she has a party coming up that I will be giving invites to.

Tarina 4 years ago

as opposed to thinking for weeks beforehand that none of his friends want to celebrate his birthday with him? I dont see that as any better, personally.

SoberJulie 4 years ago

I just found an invitation for my 6yr old daughter’s friend’s birthday party in the couch. It was a month old…I really must clean more often.

Katlyn 4 years ago

This annoys me sooo much! Over three weeks ago I sent out invitations for a baby shower that I am throwing for my cousin this Sunday. We sent about 17 invitations (about 21 people and kids). I have had ONE person RSVP! It is a baby shower for her first baby for crikes sake at least tell me if you aren’t showing up.

Oh wait, I have had three people tell HER that they are coming. I think that is rude… I am throwing her the shower and don’t want her to have to deal with all of that. She has had a rough pregnancy and doesn’t need the added stress of having to direct people where to go and handling the RSVP’s. Plus it says in big bold letters Please RSVP to Katlyn and then has my phone number, work email and personal email.

JMom 4 years ago

I have to comment and say there’s probably not a greater pet peeve of mine than this. WTF is right! No one is THAT busy! We’re all moms and we are ALL busy! Rude b*tches!

On the flip side, it’s semi comforting to know that I’m not alone in constantly asking myself the question – WTF is wrong with people and what happened to manners and treating others like you want to be treated?? I even asked my husband the other day – do we want to raise our girls to be b*tches b/c it’s just easier and apparently that’s the way things are heading.. He told me to rise above, so no b*tchy children raising for us. :)

Mary 4 years ago

We had this same problem with out wedding 14 years ago. My mom ended up calling about 15 people who hadn’t RSVP’d (almost all couldn’t make it) but the worst was that we had 30 people who had said they were coming (some whole couples, some couples who only had one person show up, some singles) that never showed! I’m still pissed. All I can think of is that many are from areas where there are only buffet dinners instead of sit down and usually with the buffets you end up paying based on how many plates are used. We had to pay for those 30 meals and it’s state law that the food cannot leave the reception facility, so we couldn’t take the leftovers home. I’m still kind of bitter about some of my husbands’ aunts who RSVP’d for their adult children and then the family arrived minus those cousins.

Melanie 4 years ago

Hate that too… My daughter invited 16 friends from school. ONE rsvp’d. Three showed up. The rest didn’t respond.

It’s even worse when they RSVP a definite YES to your child, and go on about how they are excited about coming, then are no-shows. That has happened a few times. Last year my daughter’s best friend didn’t show up for her party and she was crushed. You just don’t disappoint a child like that.

Melissa 4 years ago

Our school asks that if you are handing out the invites at school, you invite all the “girls” or “boys” (depending on the sex of the bday child) from your child’s “section” of their grade. So if we have two sections of first grade, you only have to invite about 10 kids total.

They did say that if you aren’t inviting all the kids from that class, that you mail the invites. Every party my first grade daughter has been to, all of her girl classmates have been there. My fifth grader is at the point where only close friends of the birthday child are invited, almost always by mail or email. I think by fifth grade, students don’t expected to be invited to every party. Plus they have been in school so long that all of their close friends are mixed up in the two different fifth grade classes.

Carolyn 4 years ago

Right there with you!
We had a pony party this year and I needed to know who was coming to have the right numbers of ponies ready. Ended up calling a lot of people…
Next year, I’m not calling and if there is no pony for their kid, there is no pony…

Sarah 4 years ago

I ALWAYS RSVP whether its yes or no. Some of you mentioned that you have to wait for your kids activities to be scheduled before you can RSVP? I think that’s bullshit. I would much rather you RSVP’d and said yes ‘but there’s a chance little Johnny’s tiddly winks team could make it to state and it’s the date of your party’. Ok, I understand because you see, I have kids too. Whole reason for this party. All I ask is that when you know the fate of the tiddly winks team, just give me a heads up.

We had my daughter’s 6th birthday party at a local park so I would have to worry about planning activities, just send them to the playground. I was very lucky that every single one RSVP’d yes, only 2 ended up not showing but they contacted me the morning of to let me know. Because it was a large park with plenty of room, I said on the invite that PARENTS were welcome to stick around. One little girl came with not only her mom but 3 aunties and FIVE cousins, all around the same age (5-7). I had no goody bags for them. At first I felt bad, but then I thought fuck it, you didn’t ask if it were ok to bring all these kids. Of course the mom and aunties hung back being anti-social by themselves.
Also, on the invite I gave FOUR different ways to contact me. So there really was no excuse.

MeebsMom 4 years ago

I totally agree! Ignorant and disrespectful. My solution? Have smaller parties and phone people directly to invite them. If they RSVP yes or maybe, then I send them a reminder/save-the-date card with a deadline to confirm. Initially more work on my part, but eliminates frustration and helps me plan better for accurate numbers. Plus, there’s less waste after, which means less money spent.

Coley 4 years ago

My SIL didn’t show up to my middle son’s 1st birthday party because it was on the same day as her own birthday. Seriously? A 40-something year old grown ass woman couldn’t sacrifice 2-3 hours out of her own “SPECIAL” day to celebrate with the nephew she plastered all over Facebook before my husband and I could even announce his birth ourselves? And we found out after the fact that she didn’t really have any plans (spa day, etc.). She was just annoyed that the whole family was focused on my son rather than her since it was HER birthday (his was 2 days prior).

Coconuts 4 years ago

At my kids school if you send the invite to school you have to invite the entire grade. You read that correctly. I get to know the parents of the kids we like and send it to their house.

Wendy 4 years ago

Oh, it’s not just moms. It’s EVERYONE now. I’m hosting a Christmas party for our church group this weekend and we are providing babysitters, so I NEED to know so we have enough older kids. The new people in our group have RSVPd, but not the “old” ones. At least most of them have older kids, so I don’t have to worry about them needing to be watched if they happen to show up.

Deanna 4 years ago

Oh wow, I am so glad (& sad) to see that I am NOT the only one with this issue! I cannot count the number of parties I have TRIED to throw in the last three years. Either people never responded, or they did respond and flat-out told me they had better plans. Birthday parties, simple dinner parties, and so many more. The last one was my son’s “goodbye” party for his classmates (we are home schooling now) and absolutely NO ONE rsvp’d. BUT we had 3 kids show up and the parents all LEFT. I didn’t know any of them! I knew the kids, but I had NEVER had a conversation with the parents before. I’m sorry, but I would NEVER leave my kid(s) with someone I did not know.

Something is definitely wrong with people today! I don’t know if it’s a lack of manners and ettiquette, or if it’s more about the selfishness I see today. Parents don’t want to be parents, they want to be individuals, and they are therefore not taking time (even just 2 minutes to RSVP) to do the right things for OR in front of their kids.

I don’t get it either. I always RSVP as soon as I can (usually the day after I get an invite) and when I CAN attend a party I always offer to help or bring a side dish or two. Common courtesy is gone, and I don’t want my kids to grow up learning that way of thinking. But that’s just me!

Allie 4 years ago

You gals are all so funny! I love reading the responses. It makes me feel so glad that my kids are 13 and 11, invite 2-4 best friends, I call directly to their parents (actually I usually know them) and get a response right away.

I remember Kindergarten, oh! 20 invites, 10 rsvps yes, 18 kids, parents and siblings! Thank God I hosted at a jumpy place.


Coconuts 4 years ago

Seriously? That kid would drop off my list so fast.

Evonne 4 years ago

I don’t get it either. What I’ve resorted to is putting “regrets only” and I also include my email on the invitations. It helps somewhat.

Coconuts 4 years ago

ROFLMAO! That is true nerve!

Atlanticwriter 4 years ago

It’s not just the kdis birthday party… why not RSVP to other things. It’s a simple sign of respect. Bah Humbug! (though the Christmas party was fun, even though people didn’t RSVP – just lots of leftovers)

mandie 4 years ago

Totally understand! Just had a music party for my daughter and a lot of them didn’t RSVP. That drives me insane. How rude!! And they are the ones that always put RSVP on their invites.. DUH!!!!

Tracy 4 years ago

Julie – that happened to me this for my son’s birthday party this year! No RSVP at all (despite a couple reminders from me) and then they show up with two parents, two kids and THEIR GRANDPARENTS who were in town. I suspect they weren’t going to come, and then at the last minute decided they needed something to get their house guests out of their own home for a few hours. So pissed off.

Pam 4 years ago

Sad suggestion. But whoever does not RSVP will not get an invite the next go around unless there was a death in the family or the parent was performing brain surgery for like a month.

Jillian 4 years ago

I would love to, unfortunatly I live in a town where if I did that, it would get my kid expelled. From kindergarten. I still can’t believe it’s legal to fine me, or toss my ass in jail for my son missing too many days of school. I’m a single momma with no physically close support system. If you put me in jail I would lose my kid, not to mention maybe he’s missing days because he really is sick, because his immune system SUCKS! I dont know, I could do a week long rant about the crap quality and rules for school systems in this country so I will zzzzzzip it :)

Jillian 4 years ago

Well since there was no way I could afford to rent a space big enough for 69 kids on the some how freakish chance (knowing my luck) that they all showed up, much less feed them, so I ended up not inviting any of his school friends. On the plus side he will have a picture to look back on and believe he must have been really slick with the ladies. 6 girls, and he was the only boy.

Kelly 4 years ago

No excuse. The RSVP is there for a reason- oh, you couldn’t bother letting me know Johnny was coming? And now you are mad because the only “treat bag” I have for him is a lollipop?

I hate when my fam sends “Regrets only” and still call me to see if I’m going. If I didn’t call you, then I will be there.

Arnebya 4 years ago

Ummmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm come here much?

Ashley F 4 years ago

For me it goes like this-
-I RSVP to the parties that my kid(s) can actually go to since most invites ask you to RSVP if you can come. If they can’t go I don’t RSVP.
-If you send the invite to school and give it to my kid(s) chances are I won’t get it until either the day before the party or the day of. Even then, I try to RSVP if they can go. If it’s the day of that I get the invite, it’s going to be a no, but please don’t give the invite to my kid if you want me to get it in a reasonable amount of time or at all

Arnebya 4 years ago

Sometimes, unfortunately, yeah it is worth the upset when an additional, unexpected kid shows up. While sure, we should budget for that to happen, what happens when you can’t? If you’re on a strict budget and you invite 8 children, you budget for 8 children. When only 6 respond, you should still budget for those 8. But when 2 show up w/a brother or sister you weren’t expecting, the parents are not going to expect to have to pay for their additional child (when you can’t pay for 10). It just comes down to being rude.

JenniferW 4 years ago

I had plenty of people show up to my wedding who hadn’t RSVP’d. I couldn’t believe it! I had even sent self-addressed, stamped envelopes with a card and all they had to do was check a box and write their name! I even had some people show up uninvited. Luckily, people seemed to know that only the people whose names were on the inner envelope were invited and didn’t bring their kids. I would’ve completely lost it if they had!

Frantic Holly 4 years ago

I am so with you. My son’s birthday is 1/6 a horrible time for parties because of Christmas vacation. I sent his invites home for his party last year a week before and got 3 RSVPs back. Party day came and all but 4 kids out of his 20 classmates showed up, most bringing siblings too. Of course that gets me into why do I have to invite the whole class to a birthday party. But thats a tangent for another day.

Arnebya 4 years ago

Wow. This is the 8th or 9th time in the past 3 months I’ve heard this. It must really be catching on, to invite the whole class so as not to hurt anyone’s feelings. When my oldest was in 4th grade I think, I mailed invitations to just the girls she wanted to invite. Um, if your kid and my kid don’t even talk in class and aren’t friends…I don’t see the sense. I am unable to pay for 69 kids. And what if your daughter is having a slumber party, girls only? It’s too invasive, to me, for the school to put that pressure on the parent. What’re they gonna do, put your kid out of the school b/c you didn’t invite the other kid who’s kicking him down the stairs daily? I’m w/Evin above. Get the bully’s parents in the house and kick their ass to show them how your child feels each day.

I kid. A little.

phoenixjenny 4 years ago

Worse we invited two kids from my 5 yr olds school to play. They didn’t come, there was no phone call to say they where not coming, not one word was said about it since.
Result? One really sad little boy who thinks no-one wants to come and play with him.


Liz @ PeaceLoveGuac 4 years ago

I hear ya. It’s ridiculous. Maybe those parents are holding out for a better offer…you know, somewhere enchanting like Chuck E. Hell.

Marinka 4 years ago

I got this one. Stand back.

Because in order to RSVP with ACCURACY, you need to know for sure not only your own schedule and the invitee’s schedule, but you have to know the fucking schedule of everyone else in your family and the Western Hemisphere.

Sometimes you’ll know that you have a conflict but maybe you can rearrange things via a Peace Treaty or an Extradition.

It’s complicated. So the RSVPing job is less “secretary” and more “Secretary of State.”

Jamey 4 years ago

My kids birthday party is in 10 days. Everyone who was invited I see on pretty much a daily basis. Only 3 people have bothered to tell me they will be there. It’s annoying!

Jamie 4 years ago

My first born child has cried at his party so many times it it ridiculous, my daughter hasn’t but has wondered why i don’t want to throw her a party. I don’t want to see my child upset when no one shows up at his/her party. I have had people RSVP yes then not show up at all, which i think is way worse because my child was expecting them, so it didn’t matter that other people didn’t RSVP at all because at least my child would have someone at the party, then to have those kids not show up!

I had my third child this year and while i was in the hospital, my daughter had a party to attend that we had already RSVP’d yes to. I reminded my parents who where taking care of my two oldest kids about the party and she was still going to attend, present ready and everything before i left for the hospital, unfortunately she came down very sick, so sick the doctors didn’t want us to come home from the hospital for two additional days with the baby. so Grandma stayed home with the sick kid while my awesome dad and son took the present for the child to the party with regrets.

If in that mess we can all remember to RSVP and bring a present even though we were all in a bad situation then there is no reason not to RSVP PEOPLE!

Mommakiss 4 years ago

Was it an evite? Maybe looking to see who else is going? Heh. Drives me batshit

Erin 4 years ago

The reason why I don’t RSVP? The responses above, in all their bitchy glory, are usually the reason why. Because that attitude usually transcends into PTSO meetings. In classroom volunteering with other moms. In chaperoning field trips. I’ve been snubbed, mocked, and my heart blessed more times than I can count. Perhaps it’s just the moms in my area and how they highly they think of their social and financial status, but damn…it’s a birthday. Get back to basics and celebrate another year with your child without all the pomp and circumstance.

Hollywood Farm 4 years ago

Tell me about it! Along with brushing our own hair, brushing our own teeth, and get the fucking right shoe on the fucking right foot!

Phew that felt good!

Here ya loud and clear Scary Mommy!

heather 4 years ago

sounds like my oldest sons 1st bday party(the only grandchild on my husbands side mind you) when my mil showed up without my father in law becasue he got himself so tanked up he had to stay home. but the excuse she told us was he wasnt feeling good, so can you make me a plate of food so he can eat?! Hell no, tell the drunk SOB to make his own food!

Carrie 4 years ago

That is just ridiculous. And self-centered.

People should absolutely have better social skills/manners than that.

Carolyn (temysmom) 4 years ago

I’ve noticed that most people with RSVP only if they are coming. What really irritates me is the people who don’t RSVP and show up anyway. RUDE!

Sarah 4 years ago

That happened to my little girl last year. We had a few RSVP. The rest didn’t. Then the day of the party it snowed. 2 kids showed up and the rest of the RSVPers didn’t bother to call and say they weren’t coming. The manager of the establishment felt bad for us, so they only charged us for the amount of kids we had. It’s just rude.

Donna May 4 years ago

Here’s a trick: put “RSVP to learn the location of the party” on the invitation. Eliminates lazy, thoughtless parents and cuts down on the “extras”. Of course, that means you can’t have it at your house, because they’ll show up anyway!

Callie 4 years ago

You have had better luck than us. Family members won’t even RSVP one or the other when we send out FB invites…and the worst part is we know they “live” on FB.

Sarah 4 years ago

That is tremendous!

Stephanie 4 years ago

I just had this for my twins’ Baptism. Two people RSVP’ed, but everyone showed up. I just don’t know. It’s not that difficult.

Jamie 4 years ago

I always respond because my attitude is if i have already told my child they could go to a school, party or sport event and my child has told them they are going to be there it’s just not fair to the rest of the team or the child ‘s party it is, not to show up. so i allow my kids to go to things i’ve already told them they could go to before they got in trouble, but then anything new that pops up during there 1 or 2 week grounding is of limits(along with TV, Video games, and anything else that is fun!)

Mom 4 years ago

While I agree with you…should it really throw everyone in such a spin if one extra kid shows up? We have had this happen a few times – you just go with it; it’s not the kids fault, and not worth getting grey hair over.

tracy 4 years ago

My daughter’s bday party is this Saturday and NO ONE has RSVP’d yet – so yes, today I am calling EVERYONE. GAH!!!

Casey M 4 years ago

I love,love, LOVE you for being PISSED about this! So here is the thing. I throw rockin’ parties. We’re talking personalized party bags for each kid, treasure hunts, kid food, grown up food, three tiered cake (ok, she was turning ONE and I had waited through two boys for a girl, so shoot me) and go all out. So if I take ALL that time to make sure its a great time for my friends and their kids, they can damn sure call me and say, “Why yes, we’re coming.” But a lot don’t. Its COMMON FRIGGIN COURTESY to RSVP, thats why we put it on the invite. If you need to cancel last minute, thats FINE! Wouldn’t you rather have TOO MUCH than not enough? Uh, yes. I now put “reservations or regrets” and then my number, and then under it write “If I don’t hear from you by {whatever date} then I will assume you are unable to attend”. And they all call on that date. Ass.

Anne 4 years ago

I don’t do kids parties, but I have a hard time getting RSVP’s for adult parties too. Fortunately most people who know me know how much I love “stuffy old fashioned etiquette” (umm… it’s just called MANNERS!!). It also makes me nuts when people don’t follow the dress code that was on the invite, or RSVP for more people than were invited. I invited your immediate family – not your great-aunt Sue and third cousin Billy!

Rebecca @ Unexplained X2 4 years ago

So fucking annoying and RUDE!

Chelle 4 years ago

Because you never know if you will have to cancel last minute. You don’t the kid to be expecting certain friends just to find out last minute they can’t come. Have you seen how sad they can be then?

jessie boggetto 4 years ago

very rarely do ppl rsvp to my invites. it pisses me off bad cuz then u end up not having enough or having too much

Evin Cooper 4 years ago

In our school, we have to invite everybody in the class, or hand deliver or mail the invites. SO dumb. If there’s a bully, consider it a good opportunity to talk to the asshole parents and put the fear of God into them. If they’re ballsy enough to even show up.

Daniela 4 years ago

THANK YOU. I just had a bday party for my 5 year old. Some didn’t RSVP and showed up; some did call or email and didn’t show up. So it was a wash, but still!!! So rude. Next year, I’ll just take him to the movies with my friend’s kids. Never again. Sorry, kid.

Evin Cooper 4 years ago

Not ONE kid RSVPd for my boy’s party so I panicked and invited a bunch of my friends with kids, so there’d be SOMEBODY there. Of course, a bunch of kids from his class showed up, to a party where I was paying per kid. I’m glad he had a good turn out but FUUUCK it was expensive. So rude. SO RUDE.

angela 4 years ago

omg, good idea!! imma do that from now on!

Jillian 4 years ago

Ok so kind of related to this post…. I ran into a situation with my sons last bday party that really pissed me off. Anyone else have their child in a school that insists that you must invite the entire class to invite even a single child? I might not have cared, except there was one kid in 3 different classes. You have an average of 23 kids per class…. REALLY??? I have to invite 69 kids so that I can invite 3 little shits I dont even want there but my son can’t live without??? REALLY??? Because the child shouldn’t have to feel left out? Ok… so um… maybe, possible, your kid is as big of a fuckface as the parent and I dont want either of them there? I had to invite the kid that was beating the crap out of my son on a regular basis to his birthday. That is BULLLLLLSHIT. Just saying.

Lindsay 4 years ago

Thanks for the reminder! I just RSVPed for a birthday party right now!

Elexsis Gregory 4 years ago

I make an end time to RSVP on ALL of mine. I need at least a week to get all the items together. /sigh it should not be so hard to send a text or a call.

Kim-Marie 4 years ago

It seems no one has manners anymore. It’s not just birthday parties, people don’t rsvp to dinner invitations or charity events either. Were they all born in a barn?

Rebeccah 4 years ago

Genius. Pure, unadulterated genius. Jelly I didn’t think of that, actually.

Katy 4 years ago

Drives me nuts! When I was planning my 2 year old’s birthday party at the local children’s museum, I sent out not one but TWO invites. The first was an evite to get a general idea of how many kids could come since I had to pay per child, and the second was the mailed one the museum gave me. So you could have responded to the evite, called me, texted me, or e-mailed me to tell me if you could come and I had people STILL not RSVP!

Heidi 4 years ago

Oops! “give me a hard time” HAHA

Amanda 4 years ago

The requires us to stop routines to pick up the phone and RSVP. Our daily jobs aren’t always sectarian over doctor!

Ali 4 years ago

I am a culprit. I admit it. We get invited to so many parties I’m totally inundated.

Heidi 4 years ago

I know I’ve waited because if the kids give me a hard or get in trouble about something, they are not going to a party. So I don’t want to RSVP yes and then disappoint the birthday boy/girl by then saying no when it’s time to take my kid there. I DO RSVP before the deadline though and if my kids THEN get in trouble, I let them go but they get something else taken away.

lara 4 years ago

that happened to us last month, jenn. showed up on time, present in hand to my daughter’s friend’s home and left my ‘mommy card’ in case she needed anything and drove off. only to get a call 30 minutes later saying no one had shown and would we all like to go to dave and buster’s. i was MORTIFIED for that little girl. 5 kid’s rsvp’d yes and then didn’t bother to show. by the time i got back to the house – 2 girls had shown up, an HOUR late. i stayed just to be a celebrant for that poor little one. manners are DEFINITELY disappearing before our eyes. my kids have no choice – handwritten thank yous go out for anything given – within a day’s time!

Jillian 4 years ago

God yes… why didn’t I think of that for my sons last bday????

amber 4 years ago

I am having the same problem.. 4 invitations went out over a week ago.. and NOT ONE RSVP yet.. party is on sunday

Rebeccah 4 years ago

I love the description “unfortunate looking” – use it quite frequently myself. :-)

Oh, and that was just mean of your almost guest. Not cool.

Charlene 4 years ago

I just went through this last weekend for my daughter’s first birthday! A quarter of the people never responded and a quarter responded late. Then the day of the party I had numerous people cancel, which I was grateful they at least told me. However, I had several people just not even show at all who had responded “yes”!!! So glad I spent the extra money on all that food.

Staci 4 years ago

I have the same issue. My favorite excuse is that “I’m so busy, I just don’t have time to RSVP.” Really? I have three businesses, a blog, two kids aged 5 and 3, a house to maintain and a husband, plus a LARGE family – but I can find the time to call, or EMAIL someone to let them know if my kids can attend a birthday party. I had to send REMINDERS to the kids’ parents in my daughter’s class at school AND 5 of them didn’t even bother to RSVP even after the reminder. At least they also didn’t end up showing up, I would have told them they’d have to pay for the extra kid and the kid wouldn’t get a goodie bag, sorry. SO rude and inconsiderate. I’m glad I’m not that only one. I had to track people down when I got married, too. Because I wasn’t busy at all, apparently……we live in a world where it’s really all about “me” and screw everyone else. I, for one, am sick of it.

Julie 4 years ago

Totally agree. My son’s birthday was in October. I did a Facebook event because I wanted to make it as easy as possible — all they had to do was hit yes or no. I was even okay with a ‘maybe’. I STILL had to track people down to see if they were coming.

Meredith 4 years ago

Actually, Kim, that makes really good sense and is straight forward and to the point. Using that for the next birthday party! Thx.

Jennifer 4 years ago

AMEN! Love the ones that don’t RSVP and then bring their entire family PLUS THEIR NEIGHBOR’S KIDS. Makes me want to slit my wrists.

Kim 4 years ago

Because people wait until that day to decide to go, or see if something “better” comes up. That, and social ettiquette has flown out the window 😛

lara 4 years ago

completely agree. when that envelope comes home in the backpack – i take the 2 minutes to a) check the calendar and b) call the friggin rsvp number. 2 minutes. wth?! what REALLY gets my goat, is the kid that SHOWS UP without rsvp’ing (nor bearing a gift, smirk). that’s balls.

Kim 4 years ago

My friend uses the phrase ” the Favor of a Reply is Requested” it sounds old fashioned but gets more responses than the “RSVP”.

Kir 4 years ago

I agree….I mean truly people, with email today, you dont even have to call….it’s baffling to me too.

crazypants 4 years ago


me + 6 kittens.

NaRae 4 years ago

I don’t get it either – so if someone else figures it out please, please, please let the rest of us know.
I’m so glad to see I’m not standing on this soap box alone and sounding crazy. This is one of my biggest pet peeves! It irritates me to no end when I send out an invite and get to no response. But know that when I get an invite I RSVP immediately – with a YES or a NO – because WTH is a MAYBE response to a party.
This is also something I’m instilling into my daughter – get an invite – respond one way or the other.

Meredith 4 years ago

Honestly, I think many people have no idea what “R.S.V.P” means. Think about it, as a society many of our other ‘rules of etiquette’ have gone by the wayside why wouldn’t this one. I usually say “R.S.V.P by a certain date.” and spell it out for them (because I have decided that everyone else is dumb) and tell them they need to do this so I know how many kids to book the room for or cook for or whatever. It doesn’t always work but when I remind them of how THEY spoiled their precious darling’s birthday guest experience by not following protocol, then THEY are the ones feeling bad and not me.

sara 4 years ago

I feel your pain!
I RSVP to every single event anyone in my family is invited to immediately. I look at the calendar and it is a yes or a no. DONE!
My daughter’s 4th brithday is at our house next week and only 4 people have answered the evite. I hate to ask people, seriously though, how hard is it?

stephanie 4 years ago

mil refuses to rsvp because “of course she will be there” but then pulled a no show, no rsvp to my daughter’s 4th birthday party & didn’t even have the decency to call her only granddaughter to wish her a happy birthday…what a db.

Arnebya 4 years ago

It does go both ways: not responding altogether and then showing up, or saying you’ll come and then don’t. I’d rather be overprepared w/food and games than underprepared, though. It’s just rude any way you look at it. And I’m w/you. We do the whole thank you card thing, we respond yay or nay and if we are unable to come, I say so as soon as I can. It’s nothing like kids waiting for their friends and no one showing up. My middle girl experienced that when she invited 8, all 8 RSVP’d yes, only 1 came. That shit blows. And I do not forget when you hurt my kid.

heather 4 years ago

This drives me CRAZY! And for whatever reason it always happens to be family that do this to me!(my in laws side!) I shouldve realized when we sent our wedding invites how our childrens parties would go. We put on our wedding invites ADULT RECEPTION ONLY. The only kids allowed were my 2 nephews(ring bearers) and our flower girl(both her parents were in our bridal party) thats it. Wouldnt you know my husbands fucking crazy Aunt responed for her, husband and their 3 fucking kids! WHAT?! Who does that! Of course the in laws said, sure they can come! Really?! yeah, cuz they didnt pay for a dime of it! So, I had to pay for 3 extra kids meals, and then they left right after dinner! Long story short, her invite to anything we have never arrives at her house! UGH!

Carrie 4 years ago

What about a damn ladies holiday happy hour? I invite your ass 4 weeks ago, you reply with “yes” then don’t show?


You forgot (damn, I feel seriously important now)
You have a festival to get ready for the next morning (f’ing, huh?)
You can’t find a sitter (uh, you’ve known for 4 weeks now)

And the list goes on and on.

Then I see you the following Monday and you say (I KID YOU NOT), “Girl, we gotta get together soon!”


Oh, wow. Where’s my Xanax?

(We had loads of fun without the losers who didn’t show, though!)

Pamela 4 years ago

Just had a birthday party for my daughter and had to call several of the mom’s to find out if their child was coming, then one of them had the nerve to ask me to pick up and drop off their child for the party – like I did not have enough to do with getting my daughter and myself to the party!

Just Me 4 years ago

I like that idea!

Vinobaby 4 years ago

I don’t get it. Nor do I understand why the entire family (babies, toddlers, and both parents) must show up suddenly for an older kid’s party. Grrr.

One request though: parents, please include an email address for the easiest RSVPing. Two seconds and done.

Caryn 4 years ago

I am Harvey Dent on this one — I always have to check my kids’ sports/music/church/choir schedules because something is always popping up unexpectedly, and often need to arrange carpooling which depends on other people planning to go. Which means I’m waiting to ‘respondez’ until I am confident my kid is *actually* free. Yes I have a calendar in my phone that I keep updated, but things like my daughter’s gymnastics meet next weekend for example? We didn’t find out what time and day of the two-day meet she was
expected there until 2 weeks before. And of course, she has to miss a party because of the timing.

nikki 4 years ago

i totally hear EVERYONE on this one! okay, so no one really send out “physical” invitations anymore, only for young children. but even to rsvp by email, facebook, text,etc… people can’t even do that. you see everyone nowadays always on their phone, they can’t hit 2 or 3 simple letters yes or no? and then what gets me, after the party, you get a thank you via email.

Arnebya 4 years ago

THAT. Is hilarious!

Gina 4 years ago

I wish I knew. No one RSVP’s to ANYTHING. I send out emails for family dinners, no one EVER responds. HTH can you plan a menu when no one will respond? Obviously everyone was raised by jackels. Or are just assholes.

greenelixir 4 years ago

People just suck. Plain and simple. Sounds jaded but I have learned the hard way. I always RSVP right away, wish I could say the same for others. Can’t say how many times I’ve had to call parents well after the RSVP date to confirm whether or not their kid is coming to the party. And the older they get, it’s much worse!!! We were planning our daughter’s Bat Mitzvah and for an event that huge it is really nice to know who is coming in advance!!!! We still had kids who didn’t respond and I had to bug them about it, and finally got a response the week prior to the event. I think common courtesy has just flown out the window.

Kathryn 4 years ago

We live in a hyper scheduled, uber competitive, I’m a very important person society. I honestly feel like some people are waiting to see if a better invitation shows up. This is why every year my kids have smaller, more exciting, if you RSVP your kid will have a great time, parties. If they aren’t polite enough to RSVP then they don’t need to be invited next year.

Dianna Kennedy 4 years ago

I’ve had MUCH more success with sending out invitations via Facebook. For some reason, people RSVP there without problems.
Scratching my head …. still doesn’t make sense to me.

Arnebya 4 years ago

No one cares/respects RSVPs anymore, Jill. People believe they’re doing you a FAVOR by responding. Some have even told me that if they didn’t decline that meant they were attending. Say what? You didn’t respond, so I DIDN’T FUCKING COUNT YOU. Would you show up to a wedding that you hadn’t RSVP’d to? Oh, I see. I shouldn’t put this party that I’ve planned on the same level as a wedding or other affair b/c it’s JUST a birthday party. My bad. I wasn’t thinking.
And I should be cool that you bring your kids, late of course, and eat up all the pizza. But I’m a bitch b/c I keep harping on the fact that I DIDN’T FUCKING COUNT YOU SO I ORDERED/MADE LESS FOOD.

But, my irritation is moot since this is my last year giving parties.

Jenn 4 years ago

This drives me INSANE!!! I was totally lucky enough to have the parents RSVP for my daiughter’s party last year, but then dealt with it at 2 other parties for her friends. WE were the only ones that showed up!!! No one else even called, sent a note in, nothing.. I felt SO bad for those 2 little girls. Both sets of parents were gracious enough to also invite her younger sister to the parties. I would NEVER dream of not telling someone that we were going to be there or not! I even made the 5 year old write out thank you notes!!! There WILL be manners in my home. There WILL be social graces. It might be a PITA, but just shut the hell up and DO IT!!! When I planned my mother’s surprise party, I left people messages to call me back, and if they didnt call back they didnt have the info on when/where the party was!! That worked out for that situation, but it does not for kids party RSVP. I would LOVE to put “if you dont call and tell me you are coming then dont effing show up!!” But that is RUDE… lol

SinnerElla 4 years ago

And if they don’t RSVP, I don’t feed them. I didn’t plan to feed them, so they can starve. And why do people show up to a kids’ party without a gift? WHO DOES THAT SHIT????

Shauna 4 years ago

Shoot me now – but I always end up RSVP-ing at the last minute. I typically forget about kids parties until the last minute – makes for good gift giving. #justbeinghonest

Stephanie 4 years ago

Maybe we shouldn’t tell people where the party is until the night before. That way only the people who RSVP can show up- no one else will know where to go!

jen 4 years ago

especially w/ email, texting, etc…its not that hard! I’m convinced that common courtsey dying off!

Mary 4 years ago

Unfortunately I think sometimes people are subconsciously (or consciously, which is worse) waiting to see if something “better” pops up in the meantime. Sometimes people suck. And they know that if the don’t rsvp and their kid just shows up anyway no one will say anything. I think people have largely forgotten that politeness and kindness are for demonstrating respect for those around you.

SinnerElla 4 years ago

I don’t know, but when you figure it out, let me know. And it’s not just kid parties, either. We had the same problem with invitations we sent out for our vow renewal ceremony. I think people just have no concept of manners or etiquette anymore. Fuckers.

kimberly kay 4 years ago

A ‘friend’ honestly told me “I not going to RSVP to you just yet, we might have something we’d all rather do that day and not just the kids.” Selfish bitch. Glad she didn’t come with her unfortunate looking children anyhow.

Heather 4 years ago

My oldest son was invited to a birthday party right after school started. I found out the day of the party that I was the only person to RSVP for the party. They had no idea how many kids were coming, how many cupcakes to buy or anything. I was also the only parent who didn’t just dump off my kids and their present! I stayed to help out and so my youngest son could play b/c it was at our local park.

It would just be nice if people didn’t ignore those 4 little letters on the invitation! Do they not know what they mean??

Amanda 4 years ago

Are you inside my head??? My son’s birthday party was last weekend, not only did one child not RSVP BUT the venue called us to tell us that his parents dropped him off 50 minutes early. WTH?!?! we weren’t even there yet!

mamacrat 4 years ago

Swear to god there are people who don’t know what it means to “RSVP.” I got replies for my daughter’s 6th birthday that read, “I’m RSVPing for Helena’s birthday.” That was it. No, “We’ll be there with bells on.” No, “Unfortunately Margaret is unable to attend.”
Yeah? Are you serious? What part of respondez don’t you get?

Eve 4 years ago

I hear that! Funny thing is that the moms who don’t RSVP are also the moms who get all pissy when you don’t RSVP to their shit. I say, the Golden Rule applies here too biotch!

Rebeccah 4 years ago

That. Makes. Me. Insane. In fact, just reading this made my blood pressure go up. Big, HUGE, pet peeve.

Jennifer @ Hip As I Wanna Be 4 years ago

It is ridiculous. Like society has suddenly abandoned all manners. Totally feeling you on this one!

CJ 4 years ago

Seriously, I understand!! I am having a 1st birthday party Saturday and STILL don’t know how many people to plan for. I sent invitations a month ago and even sent out a mass text message a week ago plainly asking people if they were or were not coming because I need to plan food and kids goody bags. I heard back from about 1/3 of them. People suck!!

Julie 4 years ago

OH. MY. WORD. Here’s what gets me: When you DON’T RSVP and then you bring your ENTIRE FAMILY (complete w/ 4 children) to the party. That happened to me twice in the SAME party. *steam*

Karenelise Metz 4 years ago

because most mom’s nowadays are assholes. and secretly, they’re just annoyed that there’s a day out there to celebrate your child. when they’d much rather jack your day and talk about their children and how much better and awesome their birthday/years/lives are going to be compared to yours.

Melissa 4 years ago

Did you do regrets only? I have better success with that but I agree with this post wholeheartedly. Laziness at it’s best.

Marissa 4 years ago

I have that thought every time I plan a party for my kids. Why not RSVP when you get the invitation? Why wait until the very. last. minute?