Our Readers Share: 26 Ways to Decline Invites to Social Gatherings Right Now

Now that we’ve entered the summer months and staying at home 24/7 seems like a thing of the past (spoiler alert: it shouldn’t!), you might be finding it harder and harder to politely decline social gatherings. Whether it’s a backyard barbecue, a much-needed date night out, or a family vacation, it’s important for us to all remember to take caution, wear a mask, and maintain social distancing as we’re still in the middle of a pandemic.

If you’re feeling social pressure to spend more time around others right now but aren’t ready to venture out quite yet, you’re not alone. We crowdsourced our Everymom readers to ask how they’re specifically declining social invites, and they gave us 26 great answers to use the next time you feel it’s better to stay in and need a little help with what to say.

Read on to check out their advice and remember—we’re all in this together, mamas. 


Question: How are you declining social invites right now?

1. We just say, “I’m so sorry, but we can’t make it,” and leave it at that!

2. “We’re social distancing pretty seriously over here and would prefer to stay home this time.”

3. We have a 2-month-old baby, and our pediatrician said, “Just blame us!”

4. “With everything going on, we’re going to pass. But thank you for inviting us!”

5. I’ve flat out told friends I’m not ready—hopefully, they’ll understand.

6. I explain that I have high-risk family members and need to avoid public gatherings.

7. “We still don’t feel comfortable doing that and want to keep our baby safe.”

8. “Thank you so much for the invite. We’re just being extra cautious right now and limiting our exposure as much as possible. We would love to connect soon though! Maybe a family FaceTime or masked meet-up at the park?”

9. “We’re continuing to social distance as a family but can’t wait to (insert activity) with you guys in the future.”

10. “We’re keeping our social circle really small to ensure our nanny can continue to come.”



11. “We aren’t comfortable with XYZ and need to do what’s best for us. Thanks for understanding.”

12. “We’re keeping our bubble small right now. I hope you understand as we navigate this new and weird time with our new baby.”

13. “We’re not going playgrounds yet, but thanks for the invite.”

14. I explain that I’m connecting every two weeks with people being safe but not with those that I know aren’t being cautious.

15. Just straight-up tell them “no, thank you!”

16. We are trying to get pregnant, so I’ve been using that as a crutch to avoid gatherings.

17. “As much as I would love to X, I’m just not feeling comfortable enough yet.”

18. I explain that I could never forgive myself if I got it and/or passed it on to family, so I’m choosing to avoid that risk.

19. I’ve told friends that I respect their parenting and decision-making, but I’m just not ready yet.

20. “We have to interact with high-risk folks at work, so we’re playing it as safe as possible.”

21. Remind them there’s still a pandemic going on, and we take the health of our friends and family seriously.

22. “I’m not quite ready for that yet. Instead, can we (offer alternative).”

23. “There’s just so much still unknown at this time, so we’re going to stay home.”

24. I just say that my pediatrician still recommends we avoid social gatherings so we’re staying put.

25. “Sounds like this will be a great event, but we’re just not ready to socialize as much as we want to!”

26. “Thanks for the offer, but we’re waiting until there’s a vaccine. Let’s Zoom soon!”


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