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Don't Understand Office Christmas Parties (and Pushy Colleagues Pressuring Me to Attend)

Discussion in 'General Autism Discussion' started by cai24, Dec 23, 2020.

  1. cai24

    cai24 Active Member

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    I work at my Dad's company and pretty much keep to myself. I like most of the employees except for one person. She's overbearing and annoying, and I try to avoid her as much as possible. She's obsessed with having a Christmas party each year, and my dad lets her take care of it. I was thinking that due to COVID, it wouldn't happen. Unfortunately, she decided unilaterally that we would order takeout and eat dinner together. She picked the restaurant herself and would never think to ask for anyone's input. I would rather watch static on a television than have a company meal after hours. I asked my dad why we couldn't just have lunch. It's our last day of work before holiday break, and I really just want to get home. He said that she told him the restaurant isn't open for lunch which isn't even true. Before she left last night, she was like "make sure you look at the menu." I told her thank you, but I wouldn't be attending. She comes in this morning and acts like I never declined the invite. I know as soon as she finds out I'm leaving at the end of the day, she'll be pestering me nonstop. As will other people in the office. I find holiday work parties to be a complete waste of time. I don't want to spend time with these people, don't want to eat with them, and don't feel like making small talk. Not to mention that I can't stand being told what to do. I don't know why people pressure you when you specifically tell them you're not interested. I always feel like a total outcast. I (mostly) want to be left alone, but that doesn't stop people from pulling me in 15 different directions.
     
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  2. Kevin1968

    Kevin1968 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    Does your dad own the company? and does he mind if you don't attend?

    Given the Covid situation it's my opinion that there shouldn't be any parties like that this year.
     
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  3. MLE

    MLE Active Member V.I.P Member

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    Some people can't tolerate others who do not share in their extroverted traits... I personally can't stand parties and try to avoid them as much as possible...
     
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  4. Finder

    Finder Active Member

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    Just politely decline: thank you, I have other plans. It will all be forgotten. If people pester you, simply acknowledge the party with an OK, but leave work anyway. This is your life. Live it the way to want to, especially on your own time.
     
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  5. Misery

    Misery Photo-Negative V.I.P Member

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    Just dont let them push you around.

    PARTICULARLY during this whole mess. They're willfully putting people in danger just to satisfy some bloody stupid social urge. That's pretty awful. Frankly were it me in this position I'd have just outright yelled at them about it.
     
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  6. cai24

    cai24 Active Member

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    Yes. I don't think he actually cares, but he gets annoyed if I complain about it. He'll start with how they're nice people and why wouldn't I want to attend. I'm better off not even saying anything.
     
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  7. Kevin1968

    Kevin1968 Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    So you aren't likely to get fired!

    Claim a head ache and go home.
     
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  8. Soleil

    Soleil Well-Known Member

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    I didn't even like attending the holiday lunches at my work, for pretty much the same reason. It's my break, I should be able to spend it how I want, and I don't want to spend it around others when I could be spending it alone with my book.

    Being forced to spend your free time after work at the party is even worse, though. Unless you're getting paid overtime for it :p

    And like everyone else said, these company parties should be avoided during a pandemic.
     
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  9. WildCat

    WildCat V.I.P Member

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    Not the time for mass gatherings due to COVID, which you should probably reiterate to everyone if they're not aware of that already, and if your input isn't being considered then it doesn't seem like a fair deal.

    If they cannot respect your wishes and give you any backlash because of this, which is already a bad idea right now, I'd reconsider whether or not these people are actually pleasant to be around.
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2020
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  10. AGXStarseed

    AGXStarseed Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I wasn't fond of the work lunches either - heck, I remember talking about it some time back: Needing some help. Please reply.

    My advice - put your foot down, explain why you don't want to do it and don't fall for any attempts to guilt trip you (like "I want everyone there and you're going to spoil it", "how do you know you won't have a good time unless you try it?", "it's only once a year", "everyone will miss you", etc) or feel bad if they start acting snotty around you when you refuse.
    We've all only got the one life and it's up to us to make our own decisions and our own choices when presented with any scenario - not for someone else to make for us just to satisfy their own narcissistic ego.
     
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  11. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    l am like you. l hate pushy people. Just say everybody is great but you feel tired or have a headache and that's it.
     
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  12. Gracey

    Gracey Well-Known Member

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    Those types of people exist everywhere, not just where you work.

    If you dig your heels in and point blank refuse, there's a chance she'll make a big deal of it.
    Spotlight will be on you to justify why you don't like your work colleagues out of hours.

    Order smallest thing on menu and quick drink.
    Propose a toast to your colleagues for a better 2021 first, get it in early. (appearance of being sociable)

    Make excuse to leave announcing opinion over uncertainty of what you've eaten isn't agreeing with you.

    Whole charade should take no longer than 60 mins.

    60 mins out of the rest of your life?

    Gets pushy colleague off your back. Satisfies other work colleagues.
    You have your exit strategy.
    Win-Win.
     
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  13. Neonatal RRT

    Neonatal RRT Well-Known Member

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    I am an "old fart" here, but I do remember those times in high school, college, at work,...all those social gatherings. You put on your best "party persona" and act it out. I think I was able to pull it off when I was young. However, more and more over the years I was able to just not say anything, and just not show up. Sure, it started out as "I am not sure", but then people wanted to coax me into it,...which drove me nuts,...sometimes I would give in, awkwardly injecting myself into conversations I wasn't really interested in,...other times when I didn't show up they were disappointed in me later on. I learned just to have some excuse for not being able to. After a while,...they just stop asking,...even better.
     
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  14. cai24

    cai24 Active Member

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    Update: I did not attend and just ignored everyone’s nagging. The annoying lady that I mentioned in my original post ended up getting drunk, and her husband had to drive her home. So embarrassing that you would drink that much at an office dinner. There shouldn’t have even been one in the first place.
     
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  15. AutisticAstronaut

    AutisticAstronaut Member

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    Glad it worked out that you didn't have to go. I definitely feel your frustration with office parties and coworkers nagging about them. I dislike unnecessary social situations in general, and office parties are the worst of them all. Everything is so fake. Fake smiles, fake friendships, everyone expected to pretend they love their job and everyone they work with even though we all know we're only there because we have to eat and pay rent. It's insufferable.
     
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  16. cai24

    cai24 Active Member

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    I couldn’t have said this better myself. My sentiments exactly. Work events always feel so orchestrated and phony to me.
     
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  17. OkRad

    OkRad μῆνιν ἄειδε θεὰ Πηληϊάδεω Ἀχιλῆος οὐλομένην V.I.P Member

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    I tried to attend a variety of Christmas parties. Some seemed ok, I guess, but usually just dizzying.
     
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  18. Brandon Brylawski

    Brandon Brylawski Big-hearted polymath

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    Any parties that are not full of your friends are tiring and often tiresome.

    My best and first strategy is just to be gently insistent, e.g. "No, really, it's not for me. You go have fun." and repeat as necessary. If the petitioner is someone you care about, sometimes you have to make it clear that you have a problem with parties, e.g. "I'm not comfortable in a room full of people", "I find it stressful to deal with people I don't know well", or "The noise level at parties is too much for me". These sorts of statements often work with people who won't take "no thanks" for an answer. If they continue to try to wheedle you into coming, you can reiterate, e.g. "You want me to be stressed?"
     
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  19. Yeshuasdaughter

    Yeshuasdaughter Well-Known Member V.I.P Member

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    She means well. At least there's someone at your job that wants everyone to be happy and wants to make you happy. She wants you to look at the menu so you can find something you like. Just say you really appreciate the invite, and wish you could go, but you're usually pretty busy after work.
     
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  20. Aspychata

    Aspychata Serenity waves, beachy vibes

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    l was afraid to go because l knew l was going to get lost. Sure enough, l was anxious at xmas party due to what everyone stated here, (noise, eg.) then left party and was lost for an hour and a half. Next year if still working there, l will simply state, sorry, can't go, l always get lost. Also l was feeling pressure to drive someone who l defintely don't like. l adulted up and asked her not to put her hands on me finally. There was a lot of baggage around this party. lol.
     
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