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Missing 'Open House' Night at School Is Making Me Feel Like a Horrible Mom

Posted by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 8:00 AM
  • 33 Replies

Missing 'Open House' Night at School Is Making Me Feel Like a Horrible Mom

by Mary Fischer

2nd grade classroomSince my son entered "big kid" school a couple of years ago, I've been so blessed to have a wonderful job that allows me the flexibility to attend most of his school programs and events. I don't miss any of the major moments that are so important as he grows up.

But while I work primarily from home, once in a while, an opportunity pops up that allows me to escape from the cave of my kitchen island office and venture into the city to go to work like a regular person -- which I absolutely love.

I jump at the chance to get out of the house when I can -- which puts me in a bit of a pickle tomorrow evening. My son started second grade last week, and tomorrow it's open house night at his school -- the night when all the parents get to meet the teachers and get the year started on the right foot.

But there's a very good chance I won't be there, since I'll be making my way back home from the city and might wind up cutting it close if I hit traffic.

And if I don't show up, I'm scared to death that his teacher will think I'm a deadbeat mom who is too busy to show up to her kid's open house night to meet her. Then every time he talks out of turn in class or misbehaves in the slightest way, she'll think it's because I don't have enough time for him or that I'm not giving him enough attention. OMG. What if by not showing up, I'm immediately labeled as "that mom" who doesn't put her child first on her list?

Sure, my husband will be there tomorrow night to meet her and will explain that I'm out of town -- but he's the dad, not the mom. And I feel like it's my job to make sure there's an open line of communication with our son's teacher, which has me feeling all sorts of guilt over the fact that I won't be there even though I know in my head I'm not doing anything wrong. (And no, my husband doesn't understand why I'm all bent out of shape about this. It must be a mom thing.)

In an effort to appear somewhat less loser-ish, I emailed the teacher today explaining the situation. I told her that if I don't make it to the school tomorrow night, I'd like to set up a time to briefly meet with her in the next week or two to introduce myself properly.

With any luck, she'll totally understand my situation and won't automatically assume I'm one of those parents who's trying to kiss her ass by sending an email to make up for missing the open house -- because then I'll have to figure out a plan to wriggle my way out of that stereotype.

Sigh. It's fairly obvious that I can't win whether I attend the meet and greet or not. I think I'll go crawl into a hole now.

Have you ever missed out on an important school event?

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 8:00 AM
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Replies (1-10):
by Bronze Member on Sep. 5, 2013 at 8:17 AM

 I was not able to go to a parent teacher conferance because I had to go out of town that day. The teacher wrote me off and refused to set up another meeting even though I asked her several times. That was the first time I have ever missed anything at my daughter's school.

by Queen25Princes on Sep. 5, 2013 at 9:23 AM

So far I have never missed Orientation, Back to School Night, Open House, or other "important school events".

Now that my boys go to three different schools (elementary, middle and high) it will be more difficult. The kindergarten and high school orientation were on the same day/evening I was able to make it to both because they were not at the same time.

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 9:23 AM

I had to miss one of dd's data binder nights, but it was 'cause dd was sick.  When I emailed teacher to let her know dd was sick, I also asked if I could come after school another time & take a look @ what the kids were doing in school. 

by Michelle on Sep. 5, 2013 at 9:26 AM

1 time I missed the Spring Sing. My dh and I were out of town doing our immigration interview.

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 9:47 AM

 We hardly ever go. lol

Decided to go last year, but because of the pendingteachers strike, it was a waste of time. It got cancelled and no one knew till they showed up. The teachers were there but the bbq and cake and drinks and the stuff for the kids to do was all cancelled. But my then 4 yr old dd's teacher was already gone for the day. they had a work to rule order (or whatever ) it was called. Which meant as soon as the bell rang the teachers were off the clock and had no obligation to stay at the school. I was there 3 minutes after the bell and only 2 teachers from the school had stayed for open house. 2 days later the teachers were on strike. lol So the kids had no school for I think a week before they settled. lol

Ours is on the 12th 4-6. Not sure if we are going this year. dd's teacher is the same as last year. My older dd is in junior high this year and they dont do an open house.

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Not much. I did miss a 6th "graduation" awards thing. I didn't realize there was awards. I felt crappy. 

I go to all Open Houses and Parent Teacher Conferences..... I did slack off a bit once the older two got to high school. 

by LoriAnn on Sep. 5, 2013 at 10:54 AM

I think the only thing I missed was my son's preschool olympic games I just had my second son and could not find a sitter but everything else thats schedule at my son school me and my husband both tried to go too.


by Bronze Member on Sep. 5, 2013 at 10:56 AM
1 mom liked this

My DD is in Minnesota with my mom.  I am in India.  She started school 2 weeks ago.  It sucks but she will live.

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 11:14 AM

If Dad is there, I wouldnt worry about it.. Lots of good parents dont make it to Open House for one reason or another....

In our school in the 1st month of school every parent is contacted for a conference, just try to make it to that- that is way more important!

by on Sep. 5, 2013 at 11:26 AM

We have 4 girls and can't be at everyone's everything...if something is very important we try to attend but we have also found that the school is great at communication to the parents for anything we need to be aware of.

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