Now, some bacchanalias?namely ones that begin at 9 p.m. and promise to go until ?whenever??are obviously for adults only. But, others?for instance, those held in the daytime or even late afternoon?are a bit more vague regarding the exclusivity of the guest list.
When in doubt, I always ask the host, ?Is it okay to bring the kids?? If the hosts say no, I never, ever bring them. (As we determined earlier, I have no problem leaving my kids [ages 14, 10, and 6] home alone.)
If the host says yes, of course, I say thank you, and bring them. And if the host says, ?Yes, buuuut? we won?t have anything fun for them to do and I don?t know if they?ll like the food I?m serving,? I bring them anyway.
Sure, my life?and theirs?would be made much easier if I only took my kids to events that featured bouncy houses, ball pits, and foods that don?t require a knife and fork (or at least where everyone looks the other way when you use your shirt as a napkin). They wouldn?t be forced to suffer the torture that is not having their pleasure prioritized over all others, and I could enjoy myself amongst other grown-ups without also keeping one eye peeled for who is doing what to whom, where, why, now (and cracking the time-space continuum in order to intercept it).
But my kids won?t be kids forever. In fact, I daresay they are going to spend (God willing) a much larger portion of their existence as adults than as children. They are going to need to learn how to function in the adult social world. And what better time for them to sharpen those skills than while their inevitable mistakes are still considered cute and forgivable, instead of grounds for firing and/or dumping?
By introducing my kids into the adult sphere without making undue accommodations for them (or, worse, asking others to make those accommodations), I am hoping to help them figure out what kinds of adults they want to be. I want them to watch and learn and grow and emulate (and judge and reject, as the case may be).
The article is a lot longer but I quoted the main discussion points above. What are your thoughts on this? Does your perspective change if viewing it as a host versus as a guest?