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21st Birthday Woes

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  • 21st Birthday Woes

    Our Son is turning 21 and we want to celebrate with him and we are trying to organise a party for him. He has decided he would like 60 friends on a boat on the harbour, which is all ok as we suggested the boat ourselves. So after a day of finally being happy with the decision as he did not want to celebrate his birthday at all, he comes to us this morning and says - he just wants his friends on the boat and no adults or family member as we would kill the vibe. Now this is a problem for me as for one, we want to celebrate with him but also want other adult friends and the rest of our family and grandparents there. And two if we have to have a separate family gathering the cost will be greater as the boat hire, food and drinks will cost us about $8,000. Son is now saying if we are having the family on the boat as well then he doesn't want a party at all. Please help as I think insisting that the adults attend also is the way, but my husband says if our son just wants his friends there then let him do what he wants for his birthday?

    Any advice would be much appreciated.


  • #2
    Those who hold the gold, make the rules. If your son refuses to invite his family to his boat birthday party, then don't have a party at all on the boat. Keep in mind, adults on the boat will control the drinking so it won't get out of control. Imagine a bunch of 21 year olds on a boat and how wild and reckless it could get. Have two parties. A small, low-key, less expensive party for a FEW of his friends at a restaurant which won't cost a king's ransom. And then a casual family only birthday party which is maybe a potluck dinner at the house or something like that. If your son refuses to compromise and be reasonable, then abide by his wishes and have no party at all. I would axe the $8K boat party. Better to put that money towards his college fund instead!
    Last edited by chanelle; January 28th, 2018, 07:36 AM.
    "If you bungle raising your children, whatever else you do well in life doesn't matter very much."


    • #3
      I would go with the 'no party at all' option.
      "What lips my lips have kissed and where and why I have forgotten." ~Edna St. Vincent Millay


      • #4
        I can totally understand your 21 year old son wanting to celebrate his birthday without his grandparents around
        However, then he should act like the adult he legally is and throw his own party and fund it himself.
        He can't have his cake and eat it too, although if I hear you're planning on spending 8000 on a birthday party for him, I assume you've spoiled his entitled little ass so hard he's never heard the word NO.
        But that's just me making assumptions lol

        Anyway, your money, your rules. If he doesn't want the party that way, he can go and organize his own.
        You can't control the waves, but you can learn to surf


        • #5
          Gawd........birthday woes ? 'Entitlement' is the first thing that came to mind after reading your post.

          First of all, do you really think your son has 60 'friends' ? I doubt it. (acquaintances, maybe. Better yet, a ton of kids who just want to party on a boat for free with the rich kid)

          I'm going to try and put out of my head how utterly ridiculous you would be to put out $8000 for a 21st birthday party, (even if I had it to do it, I STILL wouldn't) and just give you some options to possibly consider.

          It's clear that your years of giving your son anything he's ever wanted has now blown up in your face, because despite how well off you are, your kid doesn't want you at his celebration.....he only wants you to pay for it.
          I'd tell him that should he not want his family there, then the guest list is now cut in half. He can invite 30 people.

          Evidently, it's not the $ that is the issue, but the control that you want.
          I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but no matter how close you are with your kids, how many times you've given them all their selfish little hearts desire, or made money no object, they grow up and don't want to hang out with 'mom and dad' anymore.

          Time to cut those apron strings. You're doing (or have done) him no favours by giving him everything he wants all his life.
          When he 'grows up', life is going to kick him in the ass, because he wasn't taught that not everything goes your way, and life is filled with disappointments.
          Mommy and daddy aren't always going to be there to pay for it or make it happen.

          Take the silver spoon out of his mouth, and tell him that as long as he still depends on you financially, how HE gets to spend your money will never trump how YOU say you're going to spend it.
          The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.


          • #6
            Maybe get rid of the boat. He sounds like a self-entitled brat and it's a bit scary that your husband is ok raising a young man like that. Why are you getting a boat for your relatives anyway? Is this a "keeping up appearances" type of thing in the neighbourhood?