Friends, I selected this one in anticipation of my big birthday party on June 7th. Everyone is invited, but please, leave that bad, bad liquor at home!
1967: Party Out of Bounds
Sometimes you’re at a party that has gotton out of hand. Perhaps there is drinking that you had not anticipated. Maybe it has turned into a petting session. Some teen-agers are disgusted, because parties so often turn into unpleasant situations.
Usually parties get out of bounds because of insufficient planning. If the activities and games are planned for a party, it is unlikely that it will degenerate. People find no need particularly to turn away from relaxing fun and entertainment to other veins.
Sometimes there are parties without adults on tap. Chaperons may seem old-fashioned, but it does help to have adults at social affairs; their very presence keeps things under control. Regardless of how carefully you plan parties, incidents may arise that need a firm adult outlook. Suppose some fellows try to crash your party, bringing liquor with them. This is a hard situation for you to handle alone, but your parents would be able to put a stop to it at once.
Who Is to Blame?
When a party gets out of hand it’s usually blamed on the hosts or hostesses. True, much of the fault is theirs. If they had planned the party properly, and made sure adults were present, the trouble might not have started. In one sense, however, every person at the party is responsible when it gets out of control. If you’re at a gathering, and it seems to be getting wild, you might try to help steer it back to safety. The time to act is the moment the party starts to get rough. It does no good to wait until the next morning and then condemn the host.
What Can You Do?
Try to get some activity started to pull the party back in line. Suggest one that would be fun ~ really fun ~ to absorb the guests. Perhaps a game of charades will liven things up. Maybe there are enough table games around to capture people’s interest. How about a spur-of-the-moment scavenger hunt? Or maybe everyone would like to go out to the kitchen and make hamburgers or popcorn balls.
If a gang of boys try to crash a party, are you prepared to handle the situation? Do you know how to get help if they come looking for trouble? Many of the incidents that happen at parties can be avoided if each young adult takes responsibility for seeing that things run smoothly.
If you find that you can’t help keep the party under control, the next best thing is to leave. If people are are drinking too much and you’re not enjoying yourself, simply explain to your hostess that you had better be running along. No one has much fun at a party that has gone out of bounds. After you have left such a party, reflect on it a while. Maybe you can prevent it from happening next time ~ especially at your party!
Source: Duvall, Evelyn Millis. The Art of Dating. New York: Association Press, 1967.
~ pp. 164-66 ~