Thursday, October 19, 2006

Third Roommate Syndrome

Third wheel.

Third roommate.

Low man on the totem pole.

As a third child, I knew what it was like to play third fiddle to a lot of things my older siblings were doing or had already done. However, there was enough age difference between my brother and my sister and I. There is a total of 11 years between my brother and I, and around six years between Mini Martha and I. So I really never had to live in the shadow of anybody. And, it wasn't like my brother and sister made stellar decisions when they were growing up. I was known as "the good kid," the "princess," the "queen of the castle." So I pretty much grew up as an only child.

My kids, on the other hand, are stair-stepped. And it is funny to watch to see who gravitates to whom. The Door Man and the Monkey are practically best friends, but when they are on each other's last nerve, man watch out.

Then there are times when Queen and the Monkey are sweet sisters. The Queen takes on more of a motherly role, so any real playing that happens is in the sense of big and little sister as opposed to companions playing with one another.

So I see a lot of selection happening, and I expect that. It is only natural.

However, what ISN'T natural is when we receive an invitation to a kids' party and the older two children are invited, but the youngest is not.

We received such an invitation last night from my choir director's wife. They are holding a fall party on the night of our local Halloween parade. On the front of the invite are the two olders' names .. but no Monkey's. I pointed that out to Ace, and he just shrugged his shoulders.

When I saw her that night, I asked for clarification. And her response was a non-committal "well I wasn't sure if she was old enough. I asked the girls (her kids) if they thought she was old enough, and they thought she was."

Well then, if you are listening to your children, how is it that the Monkey's name isn't on the invite?

I will tolerate my kids being selective with who they want to play with when it comes to one another. However, I will not allow an outsider select which of my children attend a KIDS' costume party. That is downright unfair. You get all of them or none of them. Sorry.


Anonymous jenn said...

I couldn't agree with you more. It's like the kid that hands out invites in class, but only to half the class.

Good for you for standing up and saying something.

10:58 PM  
Anonymous Robin said...

Ohhhh hold me back....can't TOLERATE her and her nonsense. I just had something similar happen an invite for one and the other was not included. The party is for TWO children, ages 2 and 6 respectively. I think they both fall right in the middle there, don't you?!
Oh well..
not everyone can be as thoughtful as we are! Tee hee.
Happy Friday friend, I'll see you tonight!

8:14 AM  
Anonymous Pass the Torch said...

It's so hard when you're left to pick up the pieces of social disasters like that. I think it's one thing if only one child is invited to a party for one of his or her same-aged friends, but two out of three doesn't feel right.

I'm sure you'll all find some other fun thing to do that night!


10:37 AM  
Blogger Knitting Maniac said...

Kelly: I totally agree. I was talking with a friend of mine this morning, who knows this lady about whom I speak, and I said that it would be totally different if this was an older girl party and only the Queen was invited. But it wasn't presented that way. This lady is not known to "do" children who are younger than her youngest. So anyone who falls in the category of under the age of five, she has no tolerance for them. And that is pretty bad when she is the main director for the Kinder Choir. I keep her in check, though.

11:35 AM  
Blogger Elleoz said...

I just posted about a similar situation on my blog last night. But mine is with the MIL!

I totally understand how hurtful and infuriating it is.

I don't blame you for your reaction at all.

1:34 PM  
Blogger The "Mind" said...

Our neighbors (the famous Bumpus Family) did the same thing only in the other direction. Their daughter turned 12. The pool party invitation came for Doodlebug and Drummerboy (ages 9 and 14), but Dreaded Teenager was left out (he's 15, maybe I can see their point).

However, if he's good enough to babysit their kids, he's good enough to be invited.

Oh, and none of them went. It was kind of nice to have the entire hillbilly clan gone for the afternoon.


9:21 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

We're the same way, that just irritates me... We always invite families to our get togethers. When my twins turned 8, we had kids there from 2 through 15. It was a BLAST!

6:06 PM  
Blogger Samantha said...

My situation is similar, yet different too. I have (almost) 4 year old twin daughters in headstart. Last week there was an invitation in Brat2's cubbyhole to a bday party, but NOT in Brat1's! HELLO, who's going to invite one twin sister and NOT the other? Sheesh! I could understand if they were much older and had their own certain groups of friends, but not at this age. Needless to say, they neither one went!

12:32 AM  

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The Lovely She, that is me!

I'm a mom of three peeps ... Queen Bee, The Door Man, and the Chandelier Monkey, and wife to Ace, the Helpful Hardware Man. I created this space to get away from the people known as my inlaws, and because life with three kids and a hubby is all Unexplored Territory.

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The nine-year-old who seems to be growing older every minute, has an opinion and a comment for everything, and has a true servant's heart.
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The seven-year-old who loves the organization of things, will someday be someone's therapist because of his kind soul, and will more than likely be living with us until he is 40 years old.
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The five-year-old with the 13-year-old attitude, who has a dictator's personality, asks you to watch her all the time and say "hold on" to keep your attention, and will someday come home on the back of some dude's motorcycle with 10 tatts and a body piercing or two.

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The man of the house, the fixer of things, the winner of prizes, and the only person in his family to escape the South.

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