Why I Don’t Celebrate My Birthday

First off, in our family, no one is big on celebrations. We don’t really celebrate anything that is traditionally being celebrated. With that being said, last week was my birthday, April 27th. And with the opening sentence, you should already know that I treated the day as “business as usual” day.

This year was a bit different. One, because I got cake from my boss, and a birthday greeting compilation from my girlfriend. We also watched The Avengers before calling it a day. I would not consider it celebrating, but it is already different (in the best way) than the usual birthdays I had.

I grew up not following traditions, like the aforementioned celebrations. We did not have the financial means before, so I got used to it. Last birthday “party” I had was when I was 5. Then life caught up.

Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t sit around the house during Christmas or New Year hoping to get something better, or feel sorry for myself. I just got used to it. I have always thought about the financial repercussion of celebrations. I don’t want to spend too much on one day, just to follow traditions. I celebrate in thoughts, but not in the usual way.

It is interesting to see the reactions of my co-workers when I told them that I don’t really celebrate my birthday. They actually gave me a cake. Funny thing is, I really did not know how to act when I got it. I was not surprised, as we already have the habit of buying cakes for our teammates on their birthday, that it becomes expected. So I said “Thanks!” and proceeded to put it back in the box.

They had to point out that it was for everyone to eat. Now I was not really sure of this, but I thought that since they gave it to me, then I have the liberty of taking it home. I have a twin brother, so I was thinking of sharing the cake with him. I did not notice the cake was already sliced equal to the number of teammates I have, including my boss.

I was really clueless, in every sense of the word.

One of them asked me if I did not really celebrate my birthday. Their reaction was a bit funny and a bit impish. I felt like it was a crime with the way they reacted.

I also hate the fact that most people would only remember you if it’s your birthday. They would ask for a “birthday treat”, or expect to be invited to a “party” even though the only existing communication we have is once a year, through text.

And don’t get me started with Facebook. I removed my birthdate from my profile because I would be bombarded with messages wishing me a happy birthday, from people that I barely know, or have just met a couple of times, both of which I just did not have the gall to decline their friend request. Plus, they would be expecting for me to give each of them a response.

It goes the same to people that I know for years. The only time they remember your birthday is when they see it on facebook. Try removing your birthdate from (all of) your profile and see who remembers: those are the only people who care enough to do so.

Many people also have the habit of judging what you have accomplished with your age, and normally this conversation would be initiated during a birthday party.. I should be proud of this, but I know that some people would resent that fact, so I keep mum about it too.

Let me give another reason, although I know I would get a lot of hate with this: I have grown accustomed to thinking that birthdays are just a way of telling you that you are one step closer to oblivion. With each candle burned, we may need to think; “Did I ever grow up?”, “Am I going to be a better person now that I am a year older?”. Birthdays just remind us of life’s requirement to grow, but it turns out to be the show-and-tell of how little we did.

I have to admit though, that when I was younger, I used to envy the kids who would throw parties in school or invite me and my brother to a restaurant/fastfood for their celebration. I have always wanted to have one too, until I grew up a few more birthdays later. I also started to find it weird to celebrate something that you have always tried to hide or lied about.
I do celebrate my mom and dad’s birthday though. It is one way of me thanking them of the fact that without them, my birthday, and ultimately me, would not exist.


13 thoughts on “Why I Don’t Celebrate My Birthday

  1. Birthdays just remind us of life’s requirement to grow, but it turns out to be the show-and-tell of how little we did. -well said boss

  2. I removed my birthday on Facebook as well, but then I realized that it would be funnier if I set it to April 1 and see if anyone greets me.
    And people did! XD

    Did you know that all Koreans “age” at the same time? A year is officially added to their ages only on New Year’s Day!

    P.S. You have a twin! Awesome! Identical?

  3. Thank God! I thought i was an anti-social freaky monster who has a neurological disorder for not wanting to be the center of attention! I haven’t celebrated my birthday since i was in grade 1 . Moreover i deavtivate my facebook account to avoid cheesy birthday wishes on it, i switch off my cellphone 2 days in advance to avoid calls and texts and take a trip(with immediate family) without telling ANYBODY else!!! I try to hide from all the people who aren’t deeply connected to my life!!

    Thinking that there was something wrong with me i decided to google it and stumbled on this blog and some other articles.

    My heartfelt gratitude and appreciation to the blogger for sharing this. You really made my day 🙂

  4. Its my birthday today! my dad died 10 years ago. I just wish i could celebrate it just with him. No other people, no party, just him. i can’t 😦

    people on facebook all year don’t have contact with you but somehow they write an emotionless “happy birthday” on your profile wall.

    For me it really is business as usual. My last birthday was at pizza hut with my dad and family. since he died nobody celebrates anything.

  5. I too don’t care to celebrate b-days..mine or other people, let alone someone other scum wadd’s b-day. Just another day is so right on. As a Historian/Philospher and student of the earth I can appreciate everyones point of view or interpretation. I find it irrelevant to tell others “hey everyone it”s my b-day.” I have to much pride to be a little cunt and be self aggrandising like all the losers on facebook who take pictures of a cake or partying with drinks in hand and fake smiles. Sending presents and cakes on wastebook really loser? Like many uneducated people I’m actually content with where I’m at and what I can accomplish because I never give up on anything. From what I diciphered from all your swell comments is that altough were all different we share some common ideal to not really care about a day in a calendar. Why? Well that’s simple everyday is some scumfucks b-day. 365/24/7… and most likely there posting there b-day pics on wastebook….Your all great and hope your all well….except for the timewasters on facebook….

  6. Wow, what a coincidence, I don’t see a reason why I should celebrate my birthday, if I should be receiving gifts then it should be for my accomplishments in life and at school. It’s a nice coincidence that my birthday is April 27 too, hahaha, I couldn’t believe it when I started reading your article.

  7. When I tell people, I don’t have to celebrate since I haven’t accomplished, they laugh at my face and say that’s stupid. You should be happy for what you have. But I know being optimistic is one thing and following tends for sake of trends is another.

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