View Full Version : Am I wrong?

1-4-11, 6:48pm
I am retiring and they want to give me a party. I told them no thank you. My DH thinks I am being rude. Am I?

1-4-11, 6:51pm
no, it is your call. But is there a particular reason you don't want a party. Could you perhaps just have cake and coffee?

Dharma Bum
1-4-11, 6:58pm
Any way to channel this for good? What if instead of a gift they made a donation to a charity you pick?

1-4-11, 9:12pm
I don't think you are wrong. The same thing happened to a friend at work. She was a reserved person by nature and did not want the hoopla. In the end though, she let them throw a small party and may have even enjoyed the attention. I think the current employees truly enjoy congratulating the lucky person who is retiring. For those of us who are near, it gives us hope.

iris lily
1-4-11, 9:14pm
I am retiring and they want to give me a party. I told them no thank you. My DH thinks I am being rude. Am I?

Workplace retirement parties where I am are always sad things where people are showered with crap. Yet another crap fest. My favorite "retirement" party of all time is when someone "retired" one day--and received, I am not kidding, 20+ presents--and the following day started a new full time job at another like organization.

What was the purpose of that? So what, he's eleigible for retirement benefits but won't take them for another 20 years. What a charade that was.

From that day forward whenever that administrator sends 'round a flyer asking for contributions to go toward another retirement party for one of her staff, I throw that flyer away.

I think a little coffee and cake celebration is nice but it depends on who pays for it.

I would really hate for anyone to pass the hat for my staff to contribute to a stoooopid party. Perhaps my boss would buy a cake, the office supply till would pay for coffee, and it would be done.

1-4-11, 10:25pm
I said no to the party, but yes to coffee and cake the last afternoon. About a week later the people I really liked and liked me took me out for supper and drinks
and paid that was a lovely evening were I knew what was said was meant.
They had even invited 5 people that had left for whatever reason before me and it was all fun.....no faking it for the boss....

1-4-11, 10:27pm
I don't think you're wrong either. I agree that it IS your call. Maybe a little cake the last day, if they insist. And they might.
Best wishes for a healthy and happy retirement!

1-5-11, 12:34am
I think part of the reason I'm still at my job is that I'm afraid to retire. I hate to be the center of attention. It will be very emotional for me when I go and I hate to think of saying all the farewells. Even if you just have cake you still need to be there to hear a few words and recieve a few things. Not gifts but remembrences although sometimes there are some gifts. Several people have asked to have it kept secret and have sent an e-mail at the end of the last day saying goodbye. The shy part of me could see doing that but I have also felt sad not knowing about some departures and really wishing I could have said goodbye.

Decisions decisions..........

1-5-11, 8:01am
It's your party...or not, it's up to you and it's not rude to say 'no thanks'. The most absurb retirement party I remember was when the party was over, the retiring employee rescinded her retirement but kept the (junk) presents and money. Go figure.

1-5-11, 9:07am
In response to just having cake and coffee.... my co-workers will be be coming from all parts of the state so they would not show up just for that, I'm sure. We had an office meeting yesterday and at the restaurant during lunch they brought this up. They were all excited and wanted to have a bowling party (groan). I stood up and told them I didn't want a retirement party. I was freaked, to say the least. I, too, am very quiet and don't enjoy being in the limelight. However, one of my co-workers is off on leave (he came yesterday....excited to be there). He was very excited and talked to me later and stated he thought I should have the party. He may not be around for his own retirement (he was to retire in Nov). He has a rare blood disorder that only a few others have had. His prognosis is not great! Also, I made it a point to say goodbye to everyone yesterday because this would be the last time we would get together since I am retiring in February. A few of the women were very cold to me. I just wish they would have asked me what I wanted. sigh

iris lily
1-5-11, 10:12am
I have to say that if people are traveling from all parts of the state for your retirement party, that you don't even want, those people appear to me to not have a life.

It sounds as though these people just like to get together and need to have an excuse to do that. That's great in one sense but don't let them use you as their excuse.

1-5-11, 1:59pm
Obviously the culture of the profession plays a part. Nobody at my husbands company can tell him how many years, months and days they have left. When it gets down to that time in my office people are very focused on it. To make it through to retirement is a major accomplishment. When one of our members retires those who have retired previously attend the ceremony as a show of respect and solidarity. They all have lives. If you quit you are gone. If you officially retire you remain a member of the family with certain entitlements. It is the golden ticket and you have earned it with blood sweat and tears.
It is always interesting to see the people who have retired come back. They look years younger and so relaxed :0) Maybe my white hair will return to the original brunette and I won't need that facelift afterall...............

1-5-11, 6:09pm
Well, I talked to my boss and they are taking me to lunch and, supposedly, having another office meeting. I can't get out of it so I'll make the best of it.

1-5-11, 7:06pm
you are not being rude, I feel this way each year when they celebrate my birthday. I think the coffee and cake idea sounds good.

1-6-11, 10:46pm
I think a lunch would be okay since everyone has to eat anyway. Actually the last retirement get-together I attended was in a conference room on-site and included a presentation of heart-felt comments about the retiree and her work from her boss and co-workers, which they gave to her as a momento.

I can understand you wanting to avoid the fuss, but I think something low-key which still honors all of your time there would be respectful for all. Plus if they provide you with nice cards with appreciative comments, your family and friends will realize what a great worker you were, and it will be fun to re-read them years from now.

1-7-11, 9:43am
I felt as you do when I retired from a certain position and they had a dinner and fun 'roast'. It was only afterwards that I realized how special that moment really was and I now I am glad that I went along with it.

Enter into the event with gratitude and grace and you will leave positive memories of that approach to honouring retirees.

1-7-11, 12:53pm
Enter into the event with gratitude and grace and you will leave positive memories of that approach to honouring retirees.

Thanks! That is what I will try to do.


1-9-11, 8:43pm
I retired after 31 years teaching and wanted NOTHING, but my team felt they wanted to do something, so we had a little tea, they invited lots of people, I requested donations be given to our local domestic violence shelter and it was OK. I didn't have to give a speech or be toasted. I just got to walk around and talk to people who came. The shelter got LOTS of money and items, so I felt good.

1-10-11, 6:39am
I quit once and moved away. Had a really great party and still have the tiny clock that our congressional representative gave me. However, then I returned after 5 years and went to work in the same group. Awkward.

The next time when I retired, the next group I worked with just went out to a lunch. There were only a few of us. Thankfully no decorated room, cake, or sitting saying goodbye for hours.

1-11-11, 8:25pm
Why does there have to be something as useless as cake? Why not something healthy, or gasp, nothing at all except something to drink so that people have something to do with their hands?

1-11-11, 10:44pm
I guess my first question would be how long you've worked there. And my second would be, do you have coworkers you've worked with for many years. And the third, are you really "retiring". In our culture retirement is a big deal. If you and they've been there for decades and now you're retiring then maybe you should let the party happen. Personally I'd insist, though, that there be no gifts, but that money that would've been for gifts be donated to XYZ charity. If anyone wants an explanation simply say that you believe that you have "enough" to retire with and that you'd get much more out of learning that a prized charity of yours received some nice donations. People may not like that because they like spectacles of giving (like baby showers, yikes...) but so be it. It's your retirement. As for having a nice party that someone/multiple people/your employer spend money on for food and drink, I'd personally be fine with that. Truly retiring really is a special event and life change. Why not have a fancy lunch or dinner or whatever. It's a once in a lifetime event that notes your success! Enjoy it.

pony mom
1-14-11, 12:14am
When I left the company where I worked for over 20 years, a few of my close coworkers took me out to lunch. That was special to me.

As far as a big party, think of it as a gift to your coworkers. Most employees will use any excuse for a party and they'll be disappointed if you didn't have one. My fellow coworkers were great cooks and bakers and we loved having parties for any reason. My department threw me a party as well, and although I don't like being the center of attention, I actually did enjoy it (I wasn't retiring but leaving the company). I would just be gracious and endure it so your coworkers will enjoy themselves.