FriendshipBetter Living

Dividing Time Among Friends

How do you divide your time equally among your friends/family when you give a party? I gave a birthday party and a friend of mine told me I was "acting funny" towards her because I was sitting and chatting with my out of town guests mostly. I honestly thought I was spending equal time with everybody and never met to make anyone feel left out. Do have any suggestions on how to better handle these types of matters?

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By Onesummer

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

Besides making sure there is enough food and drinks out, I would say your next job would be to mingle with all of the guests. The kind of parties I am familiar with is the ones that are small enough that everybody sits in a group and visits.

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

Your number one job is make sure there is plenty of food and drinks out, then to mingle with all of the guests. The kind of parties that I am familiar with are the ones that are small enough that everybody sits and visits with everybody. I think the main emphasis here is to mingle, not sit and visit with people.

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October 19, 20110 found this helpful

Your friend was being selfish. One cannot expect the hostess to spend a lot of time with any one guest; and if she has out of town guests, she should spend more time with them, because she doesn't get to see them often.

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You should handle it by doing the best you can, which is what you did, and if your friend complains, simply give a simple apology ("I'm sorry, Ann, I did the best I could."), and re-think the friendship!

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October 20, 20110 found this helpful

You can't worry about what someone else says. It wasn't their party. Your friend sounds controlling.

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October 20, 20110 found this helpful

Since your friend felt awkward or uncomfortable, apologize, tell her your only intention was to spend quality time with every guest, then ask her how she would have preferred you do so.

Perhaps next time you could assign your friend a "special job" like filling plates of food for the guests or filling their drinks, or planning and implementing a simple game or two, etc. That way, she would get to know more folks and would feel more a part of the party.

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October 20, 20110 found this helpful

I know how easy it is to get caught up with hosting duties, to the extent that the party is over and you spent most of your time with one group. Out of town guests or friends you haven't seen for a while can eat up your time.

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The best thing to do is mix the group from the beginning. When you sit down or approach a group of out of towners, grab your in-town friend and include them in the conversation. Is your friend across the room? Try, "I want to make sure you guys meet so and so, oh, so and so, come here a minute. I want you to meet these guys!" Or, simply introduce the friends and pull them together one way or another.

There's a reason why some parties are called "mixers." Being a host doesn't just mean putting food on the table. Your responsibilities are with all your guests. Learn how to excuse yourself with a comment like, "That's great, excuse me for a minute" or "That's hilarious. I'll be back in a minute. Go right to other guests and ask them if they need anything. The group will see that you are taking care of business.

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Pay attention to all of your guests. Takes a little practice, but remember, too, that people should mix it up together, without too much from you. A master mixer will never be lacking for conversation at their parties. Enjoy!

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