Birthday Parties on Father's Day Are Just Plain Rude

birthday cakeHow's this for a parenting conundrum. Your kid comes home from school clutching a birthday party invitation in their little paw, and they just can't wait to go spend a day filling up on cake and bashing on a pinata? But then you look at the date: little Junior is having a birthday bash on Father's Day.

Hey, Dad, we love you so much we're going to run off and spend the day without you! Can you imagine someone scheduling a kid's birthday party on Mother's Day?

Not gonna happen! But it's come to our attention lately (thanks to a number of party invitations) that people have no qualms about throwing a birthday bash on dad's big day.

And, quite frankly, we're a little annoyed on Papa's behalf.

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Doesn't Dad deserve his day with his kids too? And by "with his kids," we mean actually doing something together, not having to shuttle them to someone else's house and then sit there and make small talk with other parents while 13 sugared up elementary schoolers run around the yard throwing water balloons?

We all know how hard it can be to schedule a child's birthday party, especially when your child is born around a holiday. You want people to actually be in town for the big event so your child isn't disappointed that their friends can't attend. June is especially fraught with complications because of the Memorial Day holiday at one end and July 4th weekend at the other, not to mention graduations and end-of-the-school year festivities.

We are not without sympathy for busy parents juggling schedules.

We are, however, a little sad for Dad that parents see no problem with taking "his" day away from him. According to the National Retail Foundation, Americans will actually spend $7.4 billion less on gifts for Dad this month than they did this past Mother's Day. And while 81 percent of consumers planned to get Mom a card last month, only 64 percent will do the same for Dad.

He just doesn't garner the same respect. And that's a sad message being sent to both fathers and our kids.

While studies have shown mothers still bear the biggest burden of caring for kids in our country, fathers are doing more in 2014 than ever before. We have more stay-at-home dads. We have more dads chipping in around the house. We have more dads taking paternity leaves, and more dads taking a stand for their place(s) in their kids' lives.

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And yet our way of repaying Dads for finally getting with the program is by throwing an event that's all about getting kids to your house on a day when they should be hanging out with him?

Some might say it's "just" a birthday party, and you can simply deny the invitation. It's true.

But think about the position this puts kids in. Hey kid, you can choose between chilling with your pops on his big day ... or ice cream, and candy, and bouncy houses! Put yourself in a 5-year-old's shoes. What would you choose?

Now ... put yourself in Dad's shoes and think about how crappy you'd feel knowing your kid really wants to go get silly in an inflated castle instead of sitting grill-side with you.

Still think it's "just" a birthday party?

If you've got a Junebug, here's an idea: schedule the party for Saturday.

Would you schedule a birthday party on Father's Day? How about Mother's Day?

 

Image via Sam Howzit/Flickr

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