Why should I RSVP?

The fall months for our family seem to be the busiest.  There are a number of family members with birthdays during this time and a lot of the friends we have seem to have kids with the same trends causing September through December to be complete chaos.

I thought I'd share my reasons to RSVP according to The Johanson Journey.  First a little background.  As a youngster, I was very big into being a pen pal with friends in other states that I met along the way and writing back was very important to me, perhaps for selfish reasons: I wanted a letter back too! When I was graduating from high school, I took more note of what was proper, especially since I was sending out Thank-you's to family and friends for any gifts they sent.  I bought a book, this exact book in fact:

I was flipping through this book all of the time for tips and there are so many chapters that I started realize etiquette was not just for "How or When to send a Thankyou note".

This brings me to my TOP 5 Reasons to RSVP with children parties in mind:

1} Courtesy/Respect:  The person inviting you to their party took the time to buy an invite (maybe even have one made) & send it to you.  Its just a courtesy to acknowledge it.  There are some who make it very easy for you giving the option to only respond if you are NOT coming.  I think having an email address for the RSVP is also nice for those who might feel weird about calling.
2} Financial Understanding: As a mom of 3, I have thrown and been to my fair share of parties.  They are not cheap.  There is so much riding on the number of people who are coming that can help you pin point how much cake to buy, whether you need to go for the room that holds 25 rather than the smaller room for only 10.  Then there are the favors.  Yes, this may seem silly to most but favors are a huge hit with kids. My kids LOVE getting favors from other parties and as the host, you want to be sure you have purchased enough or made enough for everyone.  It would be sad to think that you spent all this money expecting 25 people to show up and 10 of them didn't respond at all, you still have to account for them "just incase".  This always brings me back to my first tip. Or what if only 10 RSVP and 25 show up and you didn't plan for them, you are short-handed drinks, food, favors and the list goes on.
3} Building a Relationship:  There are times when my son has been invited to a party for a friend of his that  I've never met their parents, or had the chance to even get to know the other child.  By calling to RSVP, it gives you the chance to "hit it off" before the party even starts.  Get acquainted and find out if there is a gift needed or whether the child needs or wants something in particular.  
4} Expecations This may not seem like a big deal and its something you can easily get over, but for the sake of RSVP'ing, lets say this is for a child's party.  When I get a "YES!" from a parent that a child will be attending our party, I share this with my children.  They get excited knowing that "Jane" is coming and nothing is worse than having to explain to the child later why "Jane" never showed up.  Disappointment for a child is huge.  {true story: I was new to a school in 2nd grade and invited the whole class + new neighbor friends.  The party decor was out, the cake was ready and NO one showed up.  Its over 20 years later and I'll never forget that disappointment}.  Nothing hurts worse than having building excitement break your heart or worse, your child's.
5} Etiquette says so! I know that might sound rude, but lets's face it.  Technology has gotten the best of us.  We don't use snail mail much anymore, we email, text or just send a message via facebook.  Etiquette was developed for a reason and I really hate to see something that was based on kindness and respect for others die off in our society.  No matter what the event or party invitation you get, consider it an honor to be thought of and happy that someone wants you to be apart of their special day.  It's sad that something as simple as saying yes or no can be so difficult and inconvenient.  It really is simple.  
Happy RSVP'ing!
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Nicole said...

Now I have to admit, I always thought if you RSVP'ed to something, that meant call them and tell them you're coming. I learned a few years ago that in fact telling them you won't make it is also RSVP'ing.

Anonymous said...

I do try to RSVP when I can. Sometimes I don't know if we'll be able to make it to something until the day before and then I don't.

I get huge anxiety calling parents in Lexie's class that I don't know who have invited her to a party. Instead, I just tell Lexie to tell her friend that she will or won't be coming. :o) Does that count?

Am I Really Grown Up? said...

This is one of my pet peeves. That along with people that say yes and then last minute call back and say they can't come anymore. I have a handful of relatives that will do this if they come up with a "better" party to go to.

Mrs. Match said...

This is my #1 pet peeve in the world! Why can't people just respond? It's not that hard. I feel like you nailed it. It's that people just don't have respect for one another anymore. Technology has replaced manners, and it's just plain sad. You would think it'd be easy-since email and text is instant. But even that seems to be too much trouble for some. Sigh...