5 Rules & 3 Theme Ideas

Why me, Lord? Maybe you just received divorce papers. Or you broke your favorite cut glass serving bowl from your grandmother (not that I just did that), or were rejected when you asked for something. Whatever the disappointment, sometimes you just need to throw yourself a feelings feté.

The purpose of a pity party is to deal with your crap and get on with it. Hence a party instead of an ongoing state of mind.  Or as someone said recently, “It’s okay to sit on your pity pot; just remember to flush.” Here’s how to ensure that self-pity doesn’t become a permanent part of you. (You know, like, If you cross your eyes too often, they’ll get stuck like that…)

5 Party Rules

Rule #1: Set a time limit. Yes, you need to feel your feelings, but you can’t live in that world forever. It’s not a good look. It doesn’t win friends and influence people. So decide how long you’ll need for your party. It might be a little as five minutes, or as long as a few hours, but if you stretch it out longer it’s more of a way of life than an event. If you need to, set a timer, and when it rings, you’re DONE.

Rule #2: Pick a theme. If you’re sad about missing out on a great opportunity, focus on that, and don’t wander from there to the way your boss treated you yesterday, or the time that kid in 5th Grade made fun of your lazy eye. One theme per party. Focus, focus, focus!

Rule #3: Resist the urge to invite guests. This is the only kind of party that you need to have alone. Nobody else wants to sit beside you while you sob into your bucket of Häagen Dazs. At most you might include the committee in your head, but only because if you don’t they’re likely to crash it anyway.

Rule #4: No abuse of mind-altering substances. Doesn’t mean you can’t have a glass of wine (unless you can’t), but getting loaded or drunk can turn a pity party into more of a potty party (read: your head over the toilet) and leave you with a killer headache. These activities are likely to lead to an inability to keep to Rules #1-3. And if the point is to deal and get on with it, over-indulging is likely to only make that more difficult.

Rule #5: Crying is not only allowed, it’s mandatory. If it’s not important enough to cry over, it doesn’t deserve a party. Crying is nature’s way of helping you release emotional toxins. And if you’ve been successful at sticking to Rule #3, you don’t have to give a crap about what you look like. (Sweatpants? Hells yah!) Also, you can only cry for so long, which can help to serve as its own kind of alarm clock. When the tears dry up, you should feel better. Don’t worry about buying extra tissue; rolls of toilet paper are way better party decor anyway, and a lot cheaper. You’re going to use a LOT.

Now you’re ready to have your party! But what activities will be the best? Food or no food? Party games? Read on for some great ideas…

3 Great Pity Party Themes

You can choose one of these ideas, or combine them if you have a longer time limit.

  1.  Dance it Out. If your time limit is under 5 minutes, and especially if your theme has to do with lost
    Spending 11 weeks on the Billboard Top 40 in 1963, and part of that time as the #1 song, Lesley Gore's It's My Party is the official theme song of the pity party.

    Spending 11 weeks on the Billboard Top 40 in 1963, and part of that time as the #1 song, Lesley Gore’s “It’s My Party” remains the official theme song of the pity party.

    love, turn on this 2 minute, 11 second pity classic. Get up and dance. Sing your guts out.  Toss in a primal scream or two if it helps. If you have time, watch it over and over until you perfect the back-up dancers’ choreography. Exhausting and satisfying. Lesley makes being betrayed seem like a BLAST! If you need more music, here’s a great 14-song  Pity Party Playlist by Melanie Martinez.

  2. Reminisce. Pull out the box of photos and other memorabilia, or the scrapbook, or the Facebook album and look at each item. Remember the good, and put it back in the box. When all the items are reviewed, put the top on the box and put it back under the bed.
  3. Food Fest. This works particularly well if you are having a longer pity party at night. The one time you’re free to consume any amount of calories you desire, classic courses would include pizza, ice cream, chocolate in any form, giant bottles of sugary soda, mashed potatoes with cheese melted on top, mac’n’cheese, popcorn dripping in butter…whatever it takes to make you sick at your stomach–which hopefully becomes a metaphor for getting sick of yourself and your self-pity.  Note: If what you’re craving requires anything more than 5 minutes to prepare, order it in. Your brain is in no shape to follow a recipe or any complex preparation instructions. Besides, your purpose is to focus on what…? PITY!

Other Great Pity Party Ideas

How to Have a Super Fun Pity Party (In 10 Easy Steps)

10 Easy Steps to Throwing a Wildly Successful Pity Party

I’m Throwing Myself a Pity Party


Ask & you shall receive,