I’ve had a perplexing issue come up – once more than I ever care to deal with. The issue? It’s the act (or art) of being uninvited to a gathering of friends or loved ones.
I say “art” because it takes real skill to be so brazen, yet feign confusion if the offenders are called out on their bad behavior.
A quick search on the internet reveals I am not alone. For shit’s sakes, it’s happening everywhere! And a cursory search on the Emily Post website reveals that “uninviting” people is so uncalled for, there’s no advice found for the proper etiquette in which to do it. It only tells you how to make an “uninvited” (ie. unexpected) guest feel welcome.
Like I said, this has happened more than I care to deal with. At first I chalked it up to hateful and immature family members. Either that or I am the least-liked person in any group setting. However, I highly doubt that. If it is true, then I must have done something right to be such a threat to so many. It must be my charm.
But really, I just think that society as a whole has lost their ever-lovin’ minds.
I’ll tell you a little about what I’ve learned through multiple scenarios. If this happens to you, just remember that you aren’t alone. You just have to shift your mindset a little and smirk at how ridiculous the offenders look in the end. It’s their loss – trust me.
During your youth or teen years, it’s inevitable that you’d be hurt if you weren’t invited to a party or sleepover. It’s a painful right of passage for every child. It leads one to finding a more mature approach to rejection, or being mindful of who may get hurt in the course of planning adult social gatherings so as to avoid it from happening again. In other words, the act remains in the decade in which it belongs.
Or so we think.
In my case I can’t remember one time in my youth that this actually happened to me. It happened, yes, but not to me. It was after I became an adult, particularly in just the last few years, is when this phenomenon started happening.
And oh-my-gawd did it hurt. At least at first. Now? Not so much. It provides some much-needed comedy relief now that I look at it for what it is.
In 2005 I was not invited to my parent’s 50th wedding anniversary party after I sent $900 to help pay for it. Pissed, I showed up anyway. That involved one layover in Atlanta and a very expensive cab ride from Orlando to Daytona Beach. Later on I confronted my family about this misdeed. My sisters proclaimed they just figured I couldn’t make it; therefore, they didn’t ask me to come.
Obviously, I could make it. And I did make it. They sure had no problem accepting my $900 support in order to make the party happen. Bee-otches, I say. The “old” me got pissed and tried to change their minds that family really was important to me. In hindsight, it was a wasted effort.
Then in 2006 I was uninvited to my own husband’s birthday party, thrown by his sister. She made it clear that I was not to come. I knew why. In her mind I was still the “evil ex wife.” I was not on her list of people that her brother should have remarried. It is my belief that she hoped she could make a connection for him with a younger version of me. Pissed does not even come close to how I felt about this overt expression of immaturity. Especially when my husband went anyway! He felt she was “just being nice” to throw the party for him. Yeah, I stayed home and plotted his punishment, I’ll admit. It wasn’t until mid-2009 when a chaplain heard the story and gasped at the mere thought … that Dan realized just how hateful it was for his family to do that.
That younger version of me is STILL trying to woo him. It’s utterly fascinating, yet hysterically funny. We both get a chuckle when this since-married and now-divorced girl comes slinking out of the woodwork to see if I am still around.
I’m still heeeee-ere!
Then in late-2009 I was uninvited to a family member’s funeral. Who the hell gets uninvited to a funeral? I do. In this case it was instigated by Dan’s other sister. Thankfully by then, Dan learned that this is not cool to do. None of us attended the funeral, and that was done by his choice.
We were learning, slowly but surely.
Now, and more recently…one of my children is now excluded from coming to a friend of our family’s home. The whole family was invited, but not our youngest child, Drake.
Yes, your heard me correctly. Drake. The same Drake that literally has his own Facebook following for all the funny things he says or does. Admittedly, he has said some colorful things in his life (most of which came from his older brothers and/or parroted and/or endorsed by them in some way), but we are talking about our sweet boy, Drake.
Who the heck tells their dear friend to leave one of their children behind or just come alone?
I’ll tell you who. It’s someone who doesn’t “get” that Dan prefers (and needs) to have his family intact at all times, that’s who. It’s someone who has no problem putting their dear friend in a position to choose family over their friends. Dan may go visit just this one time, but the conditions of this visit will not be forgotten. At least not by me.
Clearly, it is someone who doesn’t grasp just how damaging it is to THEM, not us.
So here’s my thoughts on this issue.
My family looked like total asses when they pulled their little stunt. As did Dan’s family. And now I have to wonder about other people too? Stupidity has no boundaries. I refuse to waste my time.
Some people simply have no social graces whatsoever. Others do it for spite. Many do it because they have simply lost their ever-lovin’ minds.
And that makes me laugh in a really sad sort of way. I don’t get pissed any more. I just remember that you can’t fix stupid. It doesn’t hurt us, it hurts them.
Just ask those who no longer have access to our family anymore. They just get a glimpse of our life through the internet, and that’s about it.
The peace that comes with it is just GLOR-EEE-OUS. I no longer have the need to persuade or convince people that we have feelings, needs, or opinions. I just move along in my life as if I didn’t have a place or part in their life to begin with.
There is absolutely no soiree in this world that can rattle me if I don’t get the chance to attend.
So, have you dealt with this issue? What happened? Did you finally shift your mindset to a better way of thinking? Are your sinister-in-laws just as brazen as mine have been?
If you take anything away from this blog entry…just remember – if it happens to you: Laughter really is the best medicine. 😉
And if you can’t laugh, maybe this video will help set the mood for starting anew: