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Divorced Father Wants Daughter To Relocate Her Kid's Birthday Party From His Ex's House, And Daughter Is Torn

Divorce is an arduous event than can complicate and taint every aspect of life for the parties involved forever. It can reach through generations to cause trouble; case in point. Redditor Partythrowaway6 is feeling the lasting effects of divorce. She reached out for advice... here's the sitch...

Dad(50m) wants me(24f) to change the location of my son's (1m) party.


Ok, so backstory. My parents divorced when I was 7. They didn't really speak after that but since my brothers and I are now grown they will say hello to each other and small talk about their grandchildren if we are at family events. After the divorce my dad went MIA for a while and due to this my brothers and I have a lot of unresolved issues that no one ever brings up. We all still spend time with him and take our kids over to spend time (but our kids are not that comfortable around them) Also, my dad remarried when I was maybe 13? And my mom is technically single but has a "friend" that my brothers and I see as more of a father figure (we call him first for money problems, car problems, advice, etc.)

So that's a little backstory, if there are any other family dynamics I'm missing please ask.

Now to my problem. I had a son last year who will be one in June. My husband and I currently live with my mom as we are saving to buy a house and hope to be out by the end of the year. Since my son will only be turning 1, we didn't want to do anything big and thought we would just have a small party at the house. It's free, there will be a/c and my son is comfortable there of course.

So I told my dad the plans and he immediately told me "When your parents are divorced and they each have significant others it is proper etiquette to have events at a neutral location." A part of me knew this would happen as he did the same to my brother a few years back and they ended up having his son's party at Chuck E. Cheese. I don't know if I should give in though.

When I told him it would cost to have it anywhere else he said that's what grandparents are for. So to appease him I looked for other places and saw that I only had two options. I could rent a room in a venue or a pavilion in a park. The problem with that is we planned to have some water activities for the kids in the backyard and people could go inside to the a/c if they wanted. With these options I can only have one or the other. I refuse to have a party at a place like Chuck E. Cheese or any other kid places because my son is one, he will not remember, and it will cost too much.

What's weird to me about this is my dad has been in my mom's house before and his wife has been there by herself before. So I'm not really seeing the issue. Also, it makes me angry that even if there was a problem that he can't put it aside for a few hours for his grandchild. He can sit on the screened in porch and not even have to come in the house if he doesn't want to.

I should note that no one but him has a problem with him coming. I'm very tempted to say whatever he just won't come and have the party the way I want.

Reddit, please help me. Am I being crazy? Unreasonable? Should I change the location? Are there any other locations I should consider? I really need an outside opinion.


Man up Man!

Giphy

See, I hate this crap. I am my husband's second wife, he has two kids from his first marriage, and we always try to make it work, for the kids' sake. His first wife and I send texts back and forth on Mother's Day (I always wish her a happy mother's day) and when his daughter was having a few issues we got the whole family together to help her: me, my husband, Mom, her husband. His first wife has been there for me when my father (and later, my step-father) died, and I am there for her if she, her husband or the kids need anything. I would be very comfortable and welcome at a birthday party at their house. We get along, and we get along well, because it makes it easier and better for the kids.

Tell your Dad that this Step-Mom says to grow up.

Diaperbabee

BRAVO!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for this! It's so important, and as a child of divorced parents, I appreciate this so much.

ThePoopie

I love people like you so much. You're doing a good job.

jolie178923-15423435

You're doing it right girl!

I just want to say that I love hearing about this dynamic. My parents tried for something similar but my bio dad would decide he wanted nothing to do with my mom, then would turn her into the bad guy when she wouldn't let me visit. As I got older (around 3rd-4th grade) my mother became abusive, and it got worse as years went on. This particular issue had nothing to do with her, however. She had full custody and wouldn't let me leave the state if he refused to answer her calls or speak to her because she wanted to know I was safe. He turned it around to make it seem like she didn't want us to have a relationship. Even now, nearing 30, I wish I had a childhood like the one you are providing for your children. Thank you for being an awesome human and raising kids in an environment where they feel loved.

LizLemonsBaby

Do you boo!

Have it at your mom's house like you planned. It's your son's day, not your dad's, so do what's best to give your son the party you want him to have. You can't get into the habit of letting your dad dictate your choices regarding your children.

"Hey, dad. I've thought it over and there really isn't another venue that's suitable for what I have planned, so the party will be at Mom's house. I hope you can make it so we can all celebrate Son's birthday together."

If he declines, that's his loss. Your son won't remember whether he was there or not anyway.

taversham

The truth can sting...

Giphy

Tell him when parents divorce it's proper etiquette to not go MIA and he's a guest to this, not the person in charge of planning. If he doesn't like it he can not go. Which fits, because not showing up is something he's got a lot of practice in.

BlueWaterbottle24

Got any ideas pops?

You want a low-key party for a one year-old. Paying for a venue makes it something else.

Tell him the party plans are what they are. If he wants to celebrate with the kid at another place, he can make arrangements for a different day and you will gladly be there.

Intelligent_Alfalfa

Children of Divorce

I'm sorry, as a child of divorced parents who both got remarried, he's simply being petty. Both of my parents have celebrated different events in the living spaces of each other, not to mention it's been years since the divorce. Have the party where you want to have it, and make sure it's the most comfortable place for your son. Tell your father your reasoning, and if he doesn't accept that, tell him that your child's comfort comes before his.

alwaysright6

Listen to Nana...

"When your parents are divorced and they each have significant others it is proper etiquette to have events at a neutral location."

Grandparent here. We have a fair mix of steps and halfs between grandparents and kids. IMHO it's fine to have it at one grand-parents house provided all grandparents get invited (as you did).

JoshuaLyman

You're not alone...

You're not crazy or unreasonable.

Similar story, I'm the same age as you and my parents divorced when I was about 3. My dad made a stink about going for a meal after my graduation from medical school next month because my mother would be there. He said I should just accept that events like that and my wedding (!?) would be awkward because of their divorce. Like you I was pretty hurt that he couldn't put his own feelings aside for a few hours.

I finally told him to get f**ked, and guess what, he's going to come along for the dinner without complaining. Don't let your parents divorce nearly TWENTY YEARS AGO make your life harder. If he's not over it, especially given he's remarried, forget him, it's his problem.

forel237

Simple truth...

Giphy

Just have your kid's party. Don't get sucked into this. Live your life and your selfish dad can get with the program or not. WHY would you turn your life inside out for someone who wouldn't do the same for you?

NiteNicole

Don't be a baby dad...

Birthday parties for 1 year olds are really parties for the parents and friends. The 1 year old won't remember. Tell your dad that he is welcome to come or not come but the party will be at your home... period...

Velvetrose-2

Your dad needs to get over himself. Don't let him order you around or you'll never be able to put your foot down.

ashmagic487

Show me your receipts...

"Dad, if you want me to have a party at a neutral location then you're going to pay for it."

DFahnz

Sounds like your dad is a bigger baby than your baby.

You're having the party where you and your child live. At that age it is so much easier than going somewhere "neutral." What if he needs a rest in the middle of the party? Or a change of clothes? Or a second change of clothes? Or whatever!

Personally I would tell your dad that you won't be changing the venue due to what's best for kiddo, as well as costs, and you hope that he won't be so uncomfortable that he misses this big moment in his grandson's life. "As you have been here before, I didn't think you'd have an issue with the location, but if it is too much for you to overcome, you will be missed. If you can come just for a little bit for pictures and cake it would mean a lot to us." (I have no problem using guilt when people are being selfish and unreasonable).

sydneyunderfoot

Bluffing

I've dealt with similar divorced parent issues with both my parents and my in-laws. This is what I respond with, every time:

"The party is at X time on Y date and Z place. Everyone is invited, including you (and your wife). If you decide not to attend, you'll be missed."

And that's it. Everyone's invited and if someone can't suck it up and be an adult for two hours for their grandchild's party, they can make the decision to attend or not but I'm not playing games with multiple events or not inviting someone or changing our plans.

Worth noting also that every single time, without fail, they have all sucked it up, acted like grown ups and come to the party. I have the only grandkids on my side but my SIL has excluded one parent or done multiple parties for years before DH and I got married and I refused to play.

eightdaysgirl

You're already home...

I would be more on the side of your dad if you didn't live with your mom. It's completely reasonable to have a party for a 1-year-old where you live.

GildedSnail

Just Practical 

Giphy

Something else to think about, if you want to put your child down for a nap, it'll probably be easier in his own sleeping space than at a pavilion or a park.

I wouldn't change the venue. My wife's parents divorced when she was young, and they still get together wherever we decide to have a party. If you give in, it's going to become very tedious over the rest of your son's life to always think about how your father will react.

mndtrp

A few ideas...

Its also proper etiquette not to be a douche to your children but that doesn't seem to be stopping him. I'm sorry, I'm sure he has redeeming qualities, but avoiding drama doesn't appear to be one of them. Giving in to this silly demand to follow a completely made up rule of etiquette will do two things;

1.) Set a lovely precedent whereby any time he doesn't like something he will; a.) demand you change it to accommodate what he wants because he knows you will. b.) throw money at it to solve the issue which will result in; c.) him lording that over you if he needs something from you in the future.

and

2.) Create a gigantic drama where everyone will be angry and resentful at everyone else because who wouldn't get annoyed that previously made plans for something that is very special are now being changed to accommodate one person's made up problem.

Tell your dad that the plans are the plans and you hope he'll come but if he doesn't want to he'll be missed. This is that proverbial "hill to die on." You don't need to be dramatic about it. You can tell him you heard his concerns, looked into it and you'll be sticking with your original plan. Keep it simple and keep it lighthearted and then you do you.

He'll either grow up or he won't. And a very happy birthday to your little one!

DanielsMuse527

Fixer

Have you mentioned this problem to your dad? What did he say?

I am a very no bs person. Your dad has the problem, so in my mind it is his problem to fix. You already did a lot of research already and those items provided more problems. If it is more of a cost problem then he should pay the difference. If it is a son remembering problem he will not remember if it is inside, outside or a Chuck Cheese. I see this as a more financial problem than anything and if your dad is willing to fund the move and the extra cost. The problem should be solved.

dtowngamer

He's basically said he will pay but I guess the problem is more of I just don't want to.

Partythrowaway6

Do you...

Giphy

Stick with your planned party. If he doesn't like it he's free to invite you to dinner to celebrate.

Your dad is missing two things here. 1. This is your life and family and he needs to support you. 2. You live with your mom. He should be grateful that she's such a stable force in his daughters life because he hasn't always been.

ZombieBoobies

REDDIT

Addiction makes you do strange things...

Addictions are dangerous. It takes a hold of your life and strangles it. It festers slowly and disintegrates your world. Well most of them do. We all have behavioral addictions that often become a quirky character trait. Sometimes it can actually be cute. Well certain behaviors within reason that is. Some can be downright annoying and fodder for the therapist.

Redditor u/milanamilana asked people to divulge a few things, asking... What's your "strange addiction"?

Ah the cones...

Giphy

When I am out walking in wooded areas I spend a lot of time trying to find pine cones to stand on.

I do it because when you find a suitably dry one it feels amazing and sounds so good. Do it. Tends to work best if they are stood upright. wewannagetloaded

The sound of music...

I will listen to music for hours on end while walking around a room, imagining various stories and scenarios. Glissando365

I do that constantly. It doesn't interfere with my life but I love coming up with all kinds of stories and dropping myself into them. ParsnipPizza2

Flesh eater.

Giphy

Chewing the inside of my mouth. classik_e

My 30 year old sister has done this her whole life, and I have never seen or met anyone else that does it as noticeably as her. She'll take the second knuckle of her index finger and push her cheek in so she can chew on it. She's gotten better about not doing it as often. I've never asked her why she does it. yolkfacekilla

Daydream Believer. 

I'm not sure how common this is but shopping for million dollar penthouses and yachts that I will never be able to afford. I just like to dream I guess. ShellSwitch

I do this a ton, it's my night time wind down in bed activity to look at /r/roomporn and imagine myself as the buyer. What I would change, what I like etc etc. ExeterMegaladon

Yuck! 

This is so gross but I am addicted to picking. Pimples, dry skin, scabs, anything pick-able I will dig at it till I bleed. No I am not on drugs. It's so bad that I am contemplating hypnosis. Annon8765

I'm so hangry!

Giphy

Going through the kitchen in search of food, giving up, then lowering my standards and looking again. bibi-chocobun

I do this ALL THE TIME!!!!

I open the fridge, look around, take a mental note of what is there and close the doors and walk away. an hour later i come back and open the fridge, look around and think of what i might want... as if my stomach wants it, but my brain says no. tunersharkbitten

Look at the people...

Analyzing other people when I'm out in public. I enjoy trying to figure out who they are just by what I see. DARKcsb

I like doing this with my mom.

We would guess "who went with who" at the food court in the mall when I was growing up. We would look at people with their trays of food and try to guess who their significant other was waiting at the table.

My mom was almost always right. It's a fond memory :) girlroseghost

Staying mute...

I'm addicted to avoiding phone calls. QiNavigator

I purposefully reply to texts with at least hour delay so it's not fishy that I am never able to accept any calls.OresteiaCzech

I found a reality series...

Giphy

Donating sperm to lesbians.

I started off donating to some friends then they began recommending me to other lesbians through a FB group.

It's so rewarding and I've fathered 7 so far. Socialist7

Thank you for reading! 

Reading creepy stories on Reddit, which I guess isn't that strange. Alec122

And then regretting it when you try to sleep? Because that's what I do. CautiousMusic

REDDIT

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English has so many inconsistencies in spelling, pronunciation, verb conjugation...don't get me started. American English, UK English, and Australian English all spell things differently and the same word can have completely different meanings or connotations.

It wasn't until my freshman year of high school when I started learning Japanese, in which a word is always pronounced exactly like it looks like it should be, that I gained a real understanding of how hard English would be for someone to try to learn as a second language. Even as a native speaker who loves the English language and writes for a living, I sometimes struggle with its many homophones (there, their, and they're, for example) and grammatical inconsistencies. Even our mnemonics that are taught in school to help remember these differences don't always hold true. "I before E, except after C" is something most American children are taught in elementary school, but what about neighbor, weight, and veil?

Redditor STUDkatz asked:

What's something weird about English (or another language) that native speakers don't think about?

Below, you'll find an assortment of the weird quirks of the language that you've probably never thought about.

My Brain Hurts

Giphy

English might be difficult. It can be understood through tough thorough thought though.

-SpeeeeedBoost

It's Right, But Why?

A native speaker has a knowledge of implicit grammar (through learning naturally as a child) that would require an adult years to study and review.

You're spewing out the correct answer but god help you if someone asks you to show your work.

-BaanThai

I am an editor and I still sometimes have trouble when asked why something should be a certain way. I just KNOW it's wrong (or correct) and I can't always explain why.

-Lil-Maece

It took until i was 16 to realize there's actually a rule to figure out if you should use a or an... Before that (and admittedly since) I was just going with the one that didn't sound dumb out loud

-booneruni

Unnecessary Combination

Giphy

People assume a lot of silly things, such as words that can be combined always are.

Examples: "Yeah I maybe doing that later." or "I do that everyday."

I want to punch myself for writing that.

-PM_ME_A_PLANE_TICKET

Running A Bit Long

Run has hundreds of uses (forms). Last I checked it was a little over 250. You run a program, you run over toads in your car, the chicken run has a duck in it, The ads run too long on the TV, you run out of toilet paper, you run down to the shop in the car, you run up a bill at the shop after the assistant gave you the run around. You run into a friend but you have to run home as you had the runs and something was running down your leg. You run to the toilet but you run into a problem. Your kid is running a lemonade stand in the doorway. You're now running a little brown cable along your path. You hope nobody takes a picture and runs it in the paper as you are running for office. Your stance is against gun runners but you're hauling a little brown nuke right now. I've run out but there's more.

-PapaOoMaoMao

Sometimes The Joke Is In The Translation

Pakistani urdu-english speaker, there are a LOT of words that are absolutely hilarious when taken in the context of english but my 2 favorite have to be which is a letter in the urdu alphabet and is pronounced exactly like "Meme" and another which is a punjabi name which is literally spelled and pronounced "Butt", there is also a national level bakery brand called "Butt"

Urdu is a great language

-Theodoric___

Strength Or Weakness?

Giphy

There is a common nine letter word with only a single vowel in English.

That word is "strengths".

-Wobbles42

Ordered Descriptors

Adjectives have a specific order they are supposed to be arranged. For example, you would never say the green large five dragons. You would say the five large green dragons. The order that English typically follows for adjectives is:

1. Quantity or number

2. Quality or opinion

3. Size

4. Age

5. Shape

6. Color

7. Proper adjective

8. Purpose or qualifier

-TinkerTailorSoldjur

Rhymes with Confusion

Read and lead rhyme and so do read and lead, but read and lead don't rhyme and neither do read and lead.

-LinnyFlower

About Time You Realized It

Giphy

I never really appreciated the word "about" until I started learning French and realized there are about a couple dozen different words you have to learn about where in English we would just say "about." It's just about one of the most versatile and useful words we have.

-schnit123

Confusing Combos

Native English speaker here.

How irritatingly complex and nuanced English (and other Germanic languages) verbs are for having tons of common verbs that change meaning completely or only subtly with one flip of a preposition and sometimes even more so by stacking a few more on.

Put + on, in, out, off, toward, into, forth, away, up, up with, down, past

Set + on, off, out, in, up, down

Run + off, on, out, into, away, up, down, over, at, through

Take + on, out, in, away, up, over, off

Break + in, out, up, down, up with, into, out of away

Give + up, out, away, in, out

Get + on, in, out, up, down, away, away with, along, by, back, through, across, over, into, at

Work + up, up to, out, through

Come + in, out, by, across, through, over, at

Do + in, away with, over, up

Hang + up, in, out, out with, over, with, off, back

Then ones where the options are fewer, they're either somewhat related or *not at all*.

Chat vs chat someone up.

Make something up vs make out.

This list isn't exhaustive because I got tired of thinking but I've heard many a friend moan and groan about how every combination seems like a whole new word or phrase to memorize. That even if it looks familiar, they can't trust it. Most other languages just have a unique word for each idea or at least morphology that is somehow linked. Work + through makes sense in that it implies you're belaboring or in the midst of resolving something (imagine pushing *through* something). So some make at least a little logical sense. Put + up + with has no clue in it that it means to endure or tolerate. Come + over is just like "went from toward me above something?"

Set + off (an alarm) makes no sense at all. Isn't it actually going *on*?

Break + in (to use a new item for the first time, implying the start of the process of making it yours) — just "breaking" your boots is bad but if you do it on the inside, it's desired?

Give + out as in, "my car's engine gave out." (went kaput) Did it hand you a piece of candy?

If repeating doing something is "doing something over," then what do these mean:

"coming over"

"handing over"

"taking over"

"getting over"

At least in languages like Spanish that are better stocked in the logic department, these all are treated as different ideas that they are.

Venir a visitar

Entregar

Encargarse de

Superar

EDIT: Spelling mistakes and additional examples.

-stanographer

H/T: Reddit

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