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We have a developing situation here that is starting to get me stressed. There is a little girl in my DD's class at school whose Mum is a bit of a problem. She is nice enough and I get on alright with her but..... she has a habit of making a "friend" then they live in each other's pockets for a while and then they fall out amidst much nastiness - and I appear to be the next on her list. For a start I am not into that "in each other's laps" type of friendships - they just don't appeal to me. also knowing what I do about her cycle of friendships I want to keep her at arm's length.

I should explain that I am known for doing fancy dress for my daughter. So in a couple of weeks we have a sort of carnival week and one of the events is a "Disney Parade" so this woman starts trying to organise my daughter to go in with a group of kids that she is putting together. I said that I thought my DD's dance troupe was going to be in the parade anyway so she couldn't go - I have since found out that they aren't so I have organised a fancy dress for DD. So today she phoned me up to say that she had checked and that the little ones weren't going to be with the dance troupe so my DD could go with her lot. I sort of lied and said that my DD wanted to go with her cousins. It is actually the absolute truth as DD does want to go with her cousins - unfortunately they will both be playing in the band :( so will NOT be in the fancy dress.

Then last year I had a party for DD's classmates to be - a going to school party. I have been trying to decide whether I was going to do another one this summer - if I do one it sort of sets me up as the party giver for the next 11 years :rolleyes: but at the same time I think it is nice to get them together again before they go back to school so I don't really mind doing it. I am also a stickler for DD only being allowed 5 or 6 at her birthday party so this is a chance for her to invite the whole class and repay any parties she has been to. So this other woman asked if I was having a summer party this year and I said I thought so but hadn't totally decided yet. So now she is trying to organise herself into that. She doesn't want to have the party and be responsible for it - she just wants to be my new best friend and muscle in on DD's party. So now I can't figure out how to talk myself out o fthis one. Without being and rude and telling her where to go :rolleyes:

Also, I am guessing that if she comes in and tries to take over she will want her son, who is a couple of years older, to be able to come and invite all his mates too, but the idea of the party is for DD's class to get together.

The only thing I can think of is to have it all totally planned and ready to go before she asks again - she said she would get back to me about it after the carnival week so I have a couple of weeks to get moving.

Any other ideas? I am totally hopeless with people and I really don't want to offend her - just want my own space LOL

hoggie
 

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I would skip the party entirely this year. Then you're not setting yourself up to be "stuck" with having one every year, and you get CrazyLady off your back. You can always do it at another time, after CrazyLady moves on to someone else.

She sounds like the kind of person I would go to great lengths to avoid. That kind of behavior just gives me the creeps.
 

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About the party, just say that if you need a hand you will let her know. I am sure you won't need a hand though!

Also, just learn that you don't have to make excuses all the time. A simple "No, I can't do that." Or "No that won't be possible." Or "No, xxx, will be attending the parade with me." etc... you don't have to explain yourself, sounds like you don't want to be best friends with her anyways.
 

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Or just be blunt: "Look, you're coming on too strong and it makes me uncomfortable. I'm used to handling things myself and prefer to continue that way."
 

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Maybe you get planning, include DD - ask her opinions.

Then when CrazyLady pops back up, tell her, "Thank you for the offer, but this is something special DD and I plan together."
Or, if "thank you" is too encouraging, how 'bout:
"I'm sorry, but our plans are just about firmed up. This is the kind of thing DD and I just love doing together! A sort of 'family memories' thing!"

Of course, the shorter the phrase, the easier it will be to get out when you are uncomfortable.

Practice.
And have a short phrase ready to follow up, for when she says, "But really, I'D LOVE to help!" or if she says something more catty, like, "Oh, so you're going to be like that!"

Good luck! You'll do fine. Just try to not leave the "door open" to future helpfulness.
 

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Melissa said:
About the party, just say that if you need a hand you will let her know. I am sure you won't need a hand though!

Also, just learn that you don't have to make excuses all the time. A simple "No, I can't do that." Or "No that won't be possible." Or "No, xxx, will be attending the parade with me." etc... you don't have to explain yourself, sounds like you don't want to be best friends with her anyways.
EXCELLENT advise Melissa! It took me a long time to get that down--"No Thank You" is enough. No excuses, no explanations. If they persist, REPEAT "No thank you." or "Thanks anyway, I really appreciate the offer, but I've got it covered."

I would not exclude the little girl if the whole rest of the class is invited. That would be mean.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks everyone - yes I guess I just have to get "no" practised. KInd of breaking the habit of a lifetime.

There is the possibility that we will have it all done between now and then anyway. Forgot to add that when I started to say that I didn't know if the party would even go ahead if we didn't get some hay made between now and then (we are talking outdoor barnyard party with haystack to play on etc.) she started telling me that I could "borrow" hay from the farmer etc. Better make sure she doesn't arrange for me to have a ton of hay delivered while I'm not looking :rolleyes:

I will have to get DD working on invites etc. In all honesty DD and I do always plan the parties together, she handmakes the invites etc. so I would be telling the truth on that one.

Wildwood Flower - don't worry. I would never exclude a child from this party. DD's birthday is different - she only ever invites 3 or 4 from her class as she has 2 best friends who are not in her class, so I feel it is OK to only invite some of her class. This is Definitely a "whole class" party and no matter how badly I might fall out with a parent, I would not leave one of the kids out of it.

hoggie
 

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You all don't realize (US spelling!) that in England you don't say no. Took me a few years of disappointments and frustrations to realise (UK sp) that if I ask for something I will not be told No but that it may never materialise. And that especially in the military (rank a lot more important there) DH's subordinates and their families would feel unable to tell us No.

First month there in England I casually said "I planned to go into London Thursday, do you mind getting the kids then in my place?" to my carpool partner. She sputtered briefly that she had plans but her DH (CPT vs my LTC) glared at her and said "You can change your appointment!" and would not let us further negotiate. A few weeks later when I realised what had happened I became VERY careful of asking for favours. On the flip side some folks would agree to my grandiose American "Gee we could help each other out! Does this sound good to you?" Then after a few weeks or days they'd come up with an ironclad possibly manufactured excuse for why they can no longer carry out what I had come to count on. (One lady left me high and dry when I had taken a job based on DD having a ride home.)

To me the Brits seemed to rather than say no, to be passive and fail at a task if they wished not to carry it out/continue it (not quite passive-aggressive but seemingly so to the American not realising how rude I was to ASK for so much outright, unknowing noone felt able to say "No not interested" or "Well how abut if I still drive all the time but you give me money for petrol the weeks I give your child a ride?") No open discussion and haggling.

Anyway by my limited experience how about saying vaguely "That would be lovely- I'll let you know...." so long as you're sure you can exclude her older boy and his pack from the party, maybe by saying "I might have a party for just the girls' class... not certain yet, have to check my diary...."
 
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