|I have a personal policy: I don't go to birthday parties for kids. I'm a damn adult. Why would I want to sit around with a bunch of screaming, snot-faced kids, and eat cake and watch cartoons? Actually the only thing I don't like from that previous sentence is the presence of children. I'd eat cake and watch cartoons all day, but I don't need to watch some stupid kid unwrap presents in order to do so.
When I share my policy with other adults, they pretty much universally agree with me. But there's this underlying feeling of obligation that I simply don't share. I'll put it this way: I don't remember the presence of a single adult at any birthday party from my childhood. Your feeling of obligation is manufactured. Just don't go.