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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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On the subject of first world problems- last day of summer ruined
Old 07-17-2017, 12:59 PM
 
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I posted earlier this year about how I absolutely despise work social functions. We have a HUGE staff, everyone but me is married and brings their spouses and kids, and being a more reserved person to begin with I end up feeling so awkward and uncomfortable. To me, these events are more "work" than a regular workday.

We have a new P for this year who seems big on "being friends" with the staff . After meeting her last year I'd already resigned myself to having to attend these events, at least for awhile until I get a better read on new P. She just sent an email out about a BBQ at her house on the last day of summer, the night before our first PD day. She even said, "I look forward to seeing you all there," rather than something like, "I hope you can make it."

We have two weeks of summer left and I am not enthusiastic about going back this year. I'm not happy about losing one of the few days I have left of summer .


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Keep smiling!
Old 07-17-2017, 01:04 PM
 
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Go for a little while- you don't need to spend the whole day. Stop by, tell your P you already had a commitment but wanted to stop by her party for awhile. Smile, smile, smile, and then slip away. As long as you stop by, you're good.

Sorry this stresses you. It sounds like she is trying real hard to build community.
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Old 07-17-2017, 01:07 PM
 
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I agree with Munchkins. I agree with you, I hate these things and I'm not politically savvy enough to go. I skip them which is stupid.
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Make it an Irish exit
Old 07-17-2017, 01:12 PM
 
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Just go and say hi to the P and to most everyone. Smile and chat with a few. (30 min. max) Then slip out when nobody's looking.
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other plans
Old 07-17-2017, 01:41 PM
 
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I agree with the others. Put in a very brief appearance and then mention that you have to leave because you have other plans. No one needs to know that your other plans involve relaxing at home on the couch!


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Take Flowers or a Plant
Old 07-17-2017, 01:45 PM
 
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I agree with the other posters.

Take flowers or a plant when you attend. That will be a nice way to say your appreciate her effort.
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Old 07-17-2017, 02:13 PM
 
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Haley 23
I hated those things as well but would always go and like you it always felt like an extension of work. I usually would feel uncomfortable.
Since it's a new P I would go and make sure she sees you. Just smile and wave.
The only time I didn't go was when I was nonrenewed and we had a faculty meeting that started in the library and ended at the principals house.
I stayed at school.
So glad I'm retired!!!
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Expected Social Events
Old 07-17-2017, 03:24 PM
 
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I understand your frustration. I actually am a bit outgoing, so I always go, but like you, I'm single unlike most of my coworkers and it can feel a bit like middle school while the cliques hang out. You already got good advice, but I'll just share what has worked for me at times:

- spend some getting to know one or two individuals you didn't really know. Finding common ground -- an aging parent, loss of a parent, pet cats or dogs, books or movies, home community, battling an injury/illness, places travelled, favorite apps-- can all lead to a connection that may even carry over to a stronger connection at school.

- try to take a game (Scrabble, cards, Pictionary, Taboo...) A fun game makes the time fly and you can avoid conversations if they make you uncomfortable.

And last but not least...

- enjoy free food!! I'm not a good cook and I'm on a tight budget...I've consumed a large # of calories at some "school socials."

After your early exit -- pamper yourself at home or have fun with a true friend.

Good luck!! ((((HUGS))))
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Old 07-17-2017, 03:29 PM
 
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It wouldn't fly with our staff. Many of us don't return from vacation until the last minute. So I wouldn't go because I am not in town.
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Old 07-17-2017, 03:41 PM
 
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Not going is a red flag unfortunately. I would go for a few minutes and use "a family birthday party" as a quick exit excuse. You will be glad you did that as you wake up the next morning.


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What to Do
Old 07-17-2017, 04:30 PM
 
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I wouldn't be delighted about a work function the last day of summer vacation. Because she is a new principal, I would stop by for a brief period of time. You are under no obligation to stay very long.
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Ugh
Old 07-17-2017, 04:35 PM
 
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I hate it when this happens, both in my personal and professional life. I am a naturally introverted person, so I NEED my alone time. However, I would most certainly go if I were you. The principal is trying to create community, and it's a great opportunity to see your co-workers outside of school. Whenever I go to events like this, I feel like I accomplished something by sucking it up and going, because I usually actually end up having a good time. It sucks, but it is worth it!
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No!
Old 07-18-2017, 06:28 AM
 
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I hate these also. I compliment you for going. Like another poster stated, I would bring something like a dip or cookies with maybe a little card or tag. (Sucking up seems to work big time at my school.)

I also would only go to something with a wingman (or women.) At the end of the year, I went to a party, but made sure that my friend picked me up, so we could walk in and leave together. Wow, I'm glad I did. I also try to think of some things to say before going. It's odd, but I have some ready answers and stories when people ask me questions. I also try to remember some things to say to people like who went on vacation, who bought a new house, etc. I don't have a spouse or kids either so I don't have those usual "go to" things to talk about.

I also don't eat before the party, so I am really hungry. I hate it when I am pressured to eat when I'm not even really that hungry. I try to settle down to a seat and just made dumb comments for a while. "Great day! Wonder if we are going to get that rain? Nice grill! What kind of plant is that? Did you hear about...?"

Just think other people are probably not thrilled to be there especially if it is the end of summer. Btw, sorry, you have to go back so soon!
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Good for you!
Old 07-18-2017, 07:05 AM
 
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I know its hard to feel pressured to attend but can you go with someone else that needs to leave? At my school I know there have been many times where teachers or other staff members want to go together because they want to exit gracefully and they feel better doing it together. I know because I have done this. If not just arrive with a plant, food, or maybe a card and leave whenever you want. Let us know how this turned out.
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All good suggestions
Old 07-18-2017, 07:26 AM
 
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I am also single, and rather shy. I find these functions to be draining, rather than animating, as the cliques hang out and I feel like I don't fit in anywhere. I agree with those who say go for a little while and then make a graceful exit, claiming other plans. Take some cookies with you or a bottle of wine, and be social for a half-hour. Don't think of it as "losing" a day, either. That will help your mindset.
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I Never Went
Old 07-18-2017, 10:05 PM
 
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You don't have to go to this. You can send her an email stating that you have other plans, thank you. I was a teacher for 17 years, and I went to only one or two parties or functions from my job that entire time. A work party with or without alcohol, it didn't matter to me. I just didn't go. It's easy for me to put my foot in my mouth at these things, too. I've heard the gossip after these parties.

I also hated going to functions where alcohol was served while I was in a room with coworkers. My coworkers were fine, but work only was where I had my relationships with them. I didn't interact with most of them socially. I rarely drink anymore and I don't really want to be around fellow employees who do.

I will go to a party outside of work when I have a reason to celebrate, but not with coworkers. I have a couple of close friends who were once coworkers at school, but I hang out with them during other times. I tried my best to be as professional as I could when I was at school, but no coworker parties for me. That time was my own, and it's not in the job description.
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Old 07-19-2017, 10:51 AM
 
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Maybe your principal assumes if she has the social the day before, everyone will catch up and be focused for the pd?

I say go and enjoy the free food and company.
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Old 07-20-2017, 11:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Maybe your principal assumes if she has the social the day before, everyone will catch up and be focused for the pd?
that's probably it!

Thanks everyone for the replies. I know I don't "have to" go and I don't like the "political" side of school, but I feel like with a new admin it would be stupid not to go. It's better to give up a few hours of my time now than pay for not attending all year. I just hope these "forced socialization" events are few and far between this year!

I'm already thinking of some topics to talk about . My only "close friend" from work (as in, we hang out outside of school too) got a new job, so I'm extra anxious since my "buffer" is gone.
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