Planning a surprise party for husband on your sisters birthday

by Cee P
(Minnesota)

My sister informed me that after a combined birthday dinner for me, my cousin, her husband, and another person, that she wants to throw a surprise party for her husband's 30th birthday. She wants to throw the party on my actual birthday, while his is the following day (Sunday). When informing me about the surprise she said "we can celebrate your birthday too! I happen to be house/dog sitting on my birthday also and would have to drive nearly 2 hrs to be able to surprise and celebrate else's birthday on my own birthday. She didn't invite any of my friends. When I tried to explain that what she planned might not work for me and that I kind of wanted to choose what I do on my birthday night, she sent out the surprise party invite with the date set, on my birthday. I feel like she's stealing my birthday thunder, am I overreacting? I feel bad for my brother in law bc if it were on any other day I would be there, no question. I would've never considered doing that on her birthday and if I did, I would've surprised both people. Am I being selfish?

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by: Ms P Etiquette

Dear Cee,

Your sister's actions appear to be inconsiderate. However, she is free to do whatever she wants for her husband with or without taking your situation into account. You are taking this slight personally, when it is probably just the opposite. She is focused on surprising her husband and not on hurting your feelings. If you cannot attend, then graciously decline. It would be poor manners to argue with her or make her feel uncomfortable because of her scheduling choice. Anyway, dogs are better company than people at times! Happy Birthday, Cee.

Ms. Practical Etiquette

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