Can I do my own birthday party?
Answer: Good to hear from you. A birthday celebration–how nice! You are a gal who knows that life is special and worth celebrating. No, it is
definitely NOT tacky to celebrate one’s own birthday, but there are tacky ways to do so. It would be tacky to include a “wish list or gift registry”
in honor of yourself in your invitation-and I know that is not your intention. You seem much too thoughtful for that type of error.
The main guideline when hosting a celebration in honor of one’s own birthday (because birthday parties are times, like showers, when gifts are
definitely given) is to avoid compelling guests to give you presents. Therefore, with your invitation include a gracious statement removing that
obligation. For example: “The pleasure of your company is the only gift desired” or “Your company is a wonderful gift. None other is requested.”
tells your friends that you value their attendance vs. throwing a party in your own honor just to get gifts.
Another good guideline says “be straightforward without presumption”. If you are thinking of a “no-host” luncheon or dinner in a restaurant, clearly
say so in the invitation. “Please join me for a “no-host” dinner as I celebrate my birthday and blow out 00 candles.” (This lets people know you
are arranging for the cake and candles–it’s not the guests’ duty).
The type of party, location, and guest list is at your option. The guest’s duty is to RSVP right away.
All guests should bring cards, and those you can open while you are together. Further, on the guest side of this situation, if I were to receive an
invitation to your party with a “no-gift” clause, I would still be delighted to either send a carefully selected gift early or discreetly bring a
small gift with which to bless you after the party; and I suspect, your friends will feel the same way. (It would also be a good idea if I inquired
beforehand about your guest list -and then, on the side, I might talk with other invited friends about gifts). Unless everyone arrived with a gift
in hand, any gifts received should be set aside and opened later in order to spare embarrassment to those who followed your “no gift request” and
did not bring a present. Have a wonderful celebration. Your birthday matters and so does protocol, which makes life better for everyone. Happy