Half-birthdays? Is this for real?

fort knox

At my kids school, they celebrate half-birthdays when the children would otherwise have a birthday during summer, and that makes sense to me: the in-class parties (at least for the earlier grades) are quite fun and often meaningful, with parents and siblings invited in for the short celebration.

Being born in August, I should know this one pretty well, along with the problem of kids being on summer holiday during when I’d ostensibly have a birthday party, except I don’t actually remember having many birthday parties, and those I do have vague memories of were from when I was little and we lived in New York.

Theoretically, then, I would have been a prime candidate for half-birthday celebrations in school, but I have no recollection of that happening, nor of anyone’s birthday be honored or celebrated in class. I mean, we just did schoolwork and I don’t recall much else going on day-to-day.

What I find interesting about the Fort Knox cartoon I include above is the idea that there’d be non-school parties or celebrations, or that children could actually invite friends over for cake and presents when it’s not actually their birthday.

Outside of school, does this actually happen? Have you ever celebrated a child’s half-birthday at home or otherwise hosted a party to mark the 6mo milestone? If so, um, why?

Note: Fort Knox is done by Paul Jon, a self-described military brat. Learn more on his Facebook page: Fort Knox on Facebook. No gold bars required.

5 comments on “Half-birthdays? Is this for real?

  1. We had a half birthday party when our daughter turned six months old. No gifts, just a park get together with snacks and cupcakes. It was a way for those who had yet to meet her to get the chance. She is almost 2.5, but we haven’t made it a tradition.

    I know families who have an adopted child they celebrate a “gotcha” day with, so their other (bio) children get half birthday celebrations to balance the fairness.

  2. We don’t have a party. But we do have one set of first cousins who live in California that we exchange half birthday presents with.

    It just seemed crazy to overwhelm the kids with presents on their birthday, when they won’t appreciate them. (But at the same time, you want to get a kid a present.) So we exchange gifts at the half-birthday, which spreads some presents through the year, and makes those exchanges a little more special.

    We only do it with this one group of cousins. i think if we did it with everybody it would defeat the purpose.

  3. My son is going to be 19 this week, we have gone through the school systems and I can say by fact that we have never been to a half birthday party for anyone. I too am an August birthday gal and boy would this have been great for me growing up, but like you I do not have much memory of birthday parties at school. (We must be close in age). That said perhaps because of my lack of birthday attention when I became responsible for my own birthday celebration I make the WHOLE month of August a national birthday month of fun and celebration, am I compensating for the fact that I was denied a birthday at school… Probably not. But if I had just been given more cupcakes then maybe I wouldn’t be a birthday cupcake nut now…. So save your summer birthday babies and send cupcakes to school or they may become birthday obsessed later … Just saying!

  4. I agree with your concern about half-birthdays. Why do kids need extra presents and another day where they’re “special”? Seems like it’ll just create spoiled brats, as your cartoon portrays.

  5. Interesting topic! I have never celebrated my childrens’ half birthdays, and I don’t see why anyone would, unless the half birthday date coincided with another important date/holiday: my nephew’s 1/2 birthday is on my birthday (& vice versa), so I will sometimes do something special with him or make a point to send him a treat/special wishes. 🙂

    I’ve added your page to my StumbleUpon too!

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