Wedding Etiquette Forum

Assigned seating at the reception

I am getting married this upcoming weekend and I am still trying to finalize my table assignments. We have a limited amount of space and I can't go crazy on the number of tables, so what I want to know is... can I separate parents from their adult children? We have a few families that have one or two 20-23 year old children and I need to know if it's appropriate to separate them!? 

Thanks!

Re: Assigned seating at the reception

  • Absolutely. Sit people where they would enjoy being seated. Sometimes that's with their parents, but it doesn't have to be. Do they have other cousins/friends of similar age that you can sit them with? People with similar interests? As long as you're not separating actual CHILDREN from their parents, go for it. 

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    Megalega14
  • Absolutely. Sit people where they would enjoy being seated. Sometimes that's with their parents, but it doesn't have to be. Do they have other cousins/friends of similar age that you can sit them with? People with similar interests? As long as you're not separating actual CHILDREN from their parents, go for it. 
    This.  As long as you put people with others that they will most likely enjoy then you are fine.

  • l I'd make sure they know people at the table and that they're old enough to sit without their parents (which in this case of course they are), then full steam ahead.  We'd sat some of H's cousins at tables together without their parents, that were in the teenager and up range.
  • Yes, I don't see that being an issue as long as you are sitting them with people you think they would like to be sat with and have common interests with. I went to a wedding when I was 18-19 with my parents and did not know a single soul other than my parents ( I was single) and would have bee kind of peeved to have been separated from them. However, you know them best and as long as they are adults I think it should be fine.
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  • We had a lot of people who also had their adult children (and some grandkids) at our wedding.  I tended to seat more by generation than immediate family.  In some cases the family units were so large I couldn't have seated three generations at the same table anyhow.  
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  • I think that's fine. My cousin seated my mother and I at seperate tables - me with some people I went to school with and my mom with people she knows from cards. It was fine although she did ask me if it was ok first.
  • Yes, you can.  If the children were small children (say, under 10), I'd say no, but I think that by that age they can sit and eat without supervision.
  • Yep.  We had my aunt and uncle sitting at the table with my parents.  Their kids and grandkids were at the next table over, so they were still close enough to talk and spend time together without having to walk half way across the reception.
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  • Yep.  My family assigned tables by generation.  All the aunts/uncles together, cousins together, etc.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • Yes, I love my in-laws to bits, but I would rather be seated with people my age than with them.
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  • I've seen it different ways. My husband's family does table arrangements by generation, while my family does it by immediate family. We did the tables accordingly. 

    I would find it weird to go to a family wedding where I was seated separately from my parents, but if it were my friend's wedding and my parents happened to be invited, I wouldn't find it strange. As long as people are with other people they know, you can split up adults (just not SO).
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  • Depending on how many generations you're inviting, how many kids people have, and where everybody lives would depend a lot on who sits with who.  I have three cousins who are all brothers, all are married, two have kids.  If I were to sit the entire family together, I'd have to find a table for 13.  But I know for a fact that one of my cousins would much rather sit with some of our other cousins than with his brothers.  And the other two brothers live near by each other, so they'd enjoy being seated with others they know as well.  So, I say it depends on too much to give you a straight answer.
  • Yes - its 100% fine to separate adult children from their parents. They'll probably appreciate it, too.
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