Wedding Etiquette Forum
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Children, or no children? That is the question.

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Re: Children, or no children? That is the question.

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    NYCBruin said:
    @Jen4948 I know! The quote box got messed up and I can't figure out how to fix it on mobile! Sorry!
    Apology accepted!
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    We're doing an adults only reception (only those invited names on invitation and spreading the "no kids" by word of mouth).

    Most people have been very receptive to our requests, but some have gotten unreasonable. Example: my step mom has been awesome about us not inviting her 9 grandkids (even though she and my dad are paying for about 1/2 the event), but my fiancé's cousin who lives in another state has been snarky about her kids not coming (FI has no relationship with the kids). So just prepare yourself for the ridiculousness and stick to your original plan--whatever you decide.

    Side note: even if the kids are well behaved they can still sometimes be very disruptive. During a best mans speech at my friends wedding the kids at the table next to us were just playing while in their seats (clinking glasses, chatting, "lalalaing") but there were so many of them and they were so loud that I (and the best man's wife) missed the speech completely-- couldn't hear it--even with a microphone! So, even if the kids are technically well behaved--they can still be disruptive and completely change the environment of the wedding.

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    We just went through a similar dilemma. Sigh. 

    Okay here's my thing about kids. First of all, I know that there are a lot of people who think that kids' antics are funny, and that you'll enjoy them later on. I, however, agree with the poster who said that some people NEVER find those things funny, and I'm one of them. Someone ignored the "no kids" rule and brought their son to my sister's wedding. It was one kid, who didn't really cause a disturbance, so it wasn't a big deal, but he did do one of those "stick his fingers in a cupcake" thing and it still annoys me to think about.

    Here's our situation: I come from a big family, kids included. A lot of my cousins have gotten married over the last few years and none of them invited kids. The cousins who DO have kids were pretty mad about it, but now they're used to the fact that many of us will not be inviting kids and so they don't cause as much drama about it now (the first couple no-kid weddings were ROUGH). 

    There are four or five sets of parents in my family who get angry when their kids aren't invited. Those parents are also the ones who let their kids generally run amok at formal events and are one of the reasons that kids aren't invited to a lot of weddings in this family any longer. 

    Anyway, so on my side of the family even though it's not the easiest of topics, most people at least realize that their kids may not be invited and are prepared for that, which is totally fine with me.

    At my sister's wedding, when she and her now husband had to deal with a tab bit of drama from his family over the subject, my FI (then boyfriend) flat out told me that I could decide whether or not we would have kids at our wedding, to which I clearly said I didn't want them and he said that was fine. Cool.

    Fast forward a year and a half when I brought up the topic and he said "YOU DON'T WANT KIDS AT OUR WEDDING?!?!?!" Lovely :) 

    This is what it boils down to for me: I haven't been around kids a lot and I get pretty stressed out when I'm around them and they're running around doing things. I worry that they're going to run into the road or that they're going to put their hands into the food. Is this a personal problem? Yes. But is my wedding the time get me used to kids? No way. We're serving alcohol at the reception and that just intensifies my stress. So I would be happiest if there were no kids at my wedding. 

    BUT, FI has a brother and a sister and they each have two kids. I love these kids to death, and his brother and SIL are really good parents with really good judgment. I trust them to make the right calls regarding their kids (i.e. if their daughter starts screaming, I know one of them will exit with her). His sister, however, not so much. She lets her kids do whatever they want, they're pretty young, and 9 times out of 10, my FI's mom has to take care of them while FI's sister takes the opportunity to abandon all responsibility. The thought of them being at the reception stresses me out to no end...but what can you do right? They're his nieces and nephews, and he's really close with them, so we're definitely inviting them.

    Our problem was that FI and I were on different pages regarding OOT guests with kids. I had the mentality that we would not invite kids and if people couldn't come because of that then it's a bummer but there's nothing that can be done about it. Either they're able to and comfortable having someone watch their kids, or they're not. The end. I'm not going to be mad about that, I hope they won't be either. FI, however, was of the opinion that we had to invite kids of OOT guests to ensure their attendance. 

    We attempted a compromise, but FI later changed his mind. I'm REALLY laid back about pretty much everything, and don't freak out about things easily, but if I DO get stressed out about something, it takes over. Multiply that by a thousand when it comes to our wedding. FI told me he thought about how stressed I would be having kids at the reception around alcohol (he knows how I feel) and said I could decide what we do. So, we're inviting the kids of OOT members of the bridal party. I think just one groomsmen is from OOT and has a kid.

    Anyway, I understand that some people think that kids deserve to be at weddings because they're part of the family, and I understand that people think that kids bring it all together and do cute things, etc. and for those people's weddings, that's awesome for you! But for my wedding, I don't feel that way. I would rather not invite more kids and worry less than invite them and risk stressing out about it. The only kids that my FI and I are close with are his nieces and nephews and I don't see the need to invite any others. 
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