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Mom Forces Kids To Hand Over Build-A-Bear They Made At Her Daughter's Birthday Party

Photo: QualityHD / Shutterstock
build-a-bear workshop

Everyone knows that Build-A-Bear is probably every child’s favorite place, where they get to pick out a stuffed animal, dress it up, and take it home with them. As such, it's a popular place for children's birthday parties. However, one Build-A-Bear party didn’t end with the children taking their bears home.

One of the moms at the party explained the incident on Reddit in a post titled, "Kids birthday party: Is this normal or am I being entitled?”

She explained that the mom hosting the party had refused to allow the kids to take their Build-a-Bears home. 

The mom explained that there had been eight kids total, and the invitation to the party claimed that each kid would be making their own bear.

“The invitation said each kid (about 8 total) would get to make a Bear, and I just assumed they would get to take them home, since that is what happened at another [Build-A-Bear] party I went to. Me and my husband even pitched in about 30 dollars as we know these things can get expensive,” the mom wrote.

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Build-A-Bear offers a few different party packages, giving the host many different options of allowing the attendees to pick out a bear, clothing for the stuffed animal, party games and other fun activities. But according to the mom, while “the party was being held at Build-A-Bear...it wasn’t run by the employees.” 

Everyone had cake and pizza in the food court before heading to the store to make their bears, after which the party would continue at the girl’s house.

“We get to the store, and the kids go wild getting their animals and accessories. As far as I know the parents didn’t really put a limit, but I made my daughter stick to just a standard dog with a shirt, which about half the parents did as well,” the mom explained.

Upon leaving the store, the “friends mom announces that the kids need to give all their animals to her daughter.”

Immediately the children become upset and angry, handing over their stuffed animals with obvious resignation. Apparently, the birthday girl wasn’t being too nice about the exchange either, ripping the animal out of one little boy’s hands when he refused to give it to her.

“I probably should have said something, but I didn’t. The other parents seemed pretty baffled too,” the mom continued.

The party continued at the little girl’s house, where all of the kids had to watch their friend play with all of the stuffed animals.

“I left with my daughter pretty quickly, and once we got back into the car she just started bawling. I felt bad so we went to build a bear and got her a new one.”

The story continued as the mom posted an update about her run-in with the mother who threw the birthday party, who is referred to as "Karen" in the post. During a school pickup, the mom, accompanied by another parent who had attended the party, confronted the other mother about the entire Build-A-Bear incident.

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The mother of the birthday girl claimed she “wanted her daughter to have a special animal decorated by her friends.”

The other mom continued, saying she “even pitched in money, assuming the bears would go to the kids.” 

Karen didn’t seem to understand the whole uproar, saying, “she didn’t have enough money to cover the cost for every guest and said she would look into returning her money,” and also didn’t “really see a problem.”

The conversation didn’t end well, with Karen walking away seemingly upset, and the mother who posted the Reddit story realized she “probably should have talked to her more about it," but ultimately let it go.

Many of the comments on the post were in agreement that Karen shouldn’t have forced the children to give up their stuffed animals to the little girl.

“Not everything needs an event space. I can understand wanting to spend the money on your own kid but don't force others to,” one user commented.

“Wow. I gave our daughters a Build-A-Bear party once too and never would have even imagined keeping everyone’s bears! That is brutal,” another user commented.

It seems that while trying to give her daughter an amazing party, Karen didn’t take into consideration how her actions would affect the other children attending. While her heart was in the right place for her own daughter, she could have, at the very least, used the party invitation to warn parents of the invited children of her intentions so everyone's expectations were clear. 

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Nia Tipton is a Chicago-based entertainment, news, and lifestyle writer whose work delves into modern-day issues and experiences.