Every parent wants their child to have a fun birthday – and as they get older, that can mean making difficult decisions about the guestlist.
When children are young, it is the norm to invite the entire class if invitations are handed out there – in order to avoid any awkward arrangements.
But one man decided to exclude a boy who had been bullying his daughter – and received a slew of abuse from the boy’s mum after she heard about the party.
It didn’t help that invitations were handed out in the playground – meaning everyone noticed that only one person wasn’t invited.
The baffled dad took to Reddit on the Am I the A****** thread, to see if he had acted unreasonably.
His daughter is seven – and the dad took over parenting full-time last year after discovering he had a daughter, with the mum no longer in the picture.
For her birthday, he arranged a small gathering in the back garden with her classmates.
But since school restarted, his daughter has faced a lot of teasing about her mum, who is no longer around, from ‘Nick’, and he decided to not invite him.
The dad explained: “A lot of the parents have been complaining about him because he’s a huge bully to the other kids and gets benched (basically a time out) a lot during recess. I’ve had talks with the teacher because he made my daughter cry after teasing her constantly about her mum.
“I was p*****, her teacher promised that they’re going to be handling the situation with Nick and keep him away from my daughter.
“Supposedly they’ve had many talks with the mum but all she seems to do is baby the kid. He hasn’t bothered my daughter since my talk with the teacher.
“So for my daughter’s birthday, she decided to invite almost everyone in the class. Obviously except for Nick.”
This didn’t go down well after his daughter handed out invitations at lunchtime and Nick started crying because he wasn’t invited.
The dad added: “Her mum confronted me after school when I was picking her up. I guess he was crying that he didn’t get an invitation.
“I had my daughter wait in the car and this lady was giving me hell for excluding her son when this could’ve been a chance for him to finally get along with his classmates.
“I told her, lady he had months to do that (or her to teach him to), this is their last week of school.
“Bit too late to be trying to make friends now with how he was treating all the kids especially my daughter. She just kept saying I should be ashamed of myself for not taking this opportunity to teach my daughter a valuable lesson on learning compassion.
“It was just a really intense encounter but in the end, I still refused to give an invitation since my daughter said she doesn’t want Nick at her party.”
Now the dad is wondering if he overreacted – since Nick was the only pupil excluded from the party.
The dad seemed to get a lot of support from fellow Reddit users, with plenty backing him.
One user wrote: “Under other circumstances, I’d say it would be rude to not invite him, but this boy has been teasing your daughter and her friends all year.
“His mum has refused to punish him for his behaviour (that we know of) and now wants you and your daughter to forgive and forget. That’s ridiculous.”
Another said he shouldn’t have handed out the invitations at school, commenting: “I was ready to say yes you are, but you’re not the one who is being unfair to Nick, his mother is.
“Still, you might have found a way to make these invitations outside of school. You have a right to invite who you want to your home but you also created a situation where everyone became aware of it at school, and despite his behaviour I think it’s good to respect the division.”
A third disagreed, adding: “I think it’s actually a pretty cruel move to exclude the 7-year-old from receiving an invitation in class (different than excluding him from the party), he’s not old enough to understand the difference and how it’s a consequence and you are passing that on to the teacher to explain and soothe him.”
What do you think of the decision? Let us know in the comments.