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Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?

I do not want to come across as a Bridezilla here, but I am very nervous about my poorly behaved niece being my flower girl.  I am not wanting to cancel my request for her to be my flower girl.  However, after having asked her/her mother to be my flower girl I have spent some significant time with her and she behaves atrociously pretty much 100% of the time.  And I mean, difficult to take out in public, people staring, constantly having to apologize to strangers kind of behavior.

Also, before making excuses for the child/parent, thinking she's two or three years old... This girl is seven years old and acts worse than most four year olds I've met.

I am not at this moment considering revoking my request, but I do not want to have a child completely hijack the ceremony, or disrupt it significantly.  I was looking for advice on how to broach the subject with her mother of whether she thinks her daughter could handle the role and stand still for the ceremony etc.  I don't want it to come across as "Your daughter behaves horribly..."  I'm very nervous about having this conversation with her mother, but I'm more nervous about having the ceremony ruined.

Any advice would be MUCH appreciated.

Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?

  • You can't really tell parents how to parent.  I know it's a sucky situation, but there's not really much you can do at this point.  If the child misbehaves, it reflects poorly on her/her parents, so I don't think it's worth getting worked up over.  I've also been to a wedding or two where the flower girl / ring bearer didn't act on cue and unless it's a screaming tantrum, it's usually funny or cute. 

    Please don't say anything to the parents.  I certainly believe that the girl probably misbehaves, but her parents will likely be seriously offended, and then they won't do anything about it regardless. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:c74adaf2-ee7e-442b-a85a-a5c5fd6875f2">Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]I do not want to come across as a Bridezilla here, but I am very nervous about my poorly behaved niece being my flower girl.  I am not wanting to cancel my request for her to be my flower girl.  However, after having asked her/her mother to be my flower girl I have spent some significant time with her and she behaves atrociously pretty much 100% of the time.  And I mean, difficult to take out in public, people staring, constantly having to apologize to strangers kind of behavior. Also, before making excuses for the child/parent, thinking she's two or three years old... This girl is seven years old and acts worse than most four year olds I've met. I am not at this moment considering revoking my request, but I do not want to have a child completely hijack the ceremony, or disrupt it significantly.  I was looking for advice on how to broach the subject with her mother of <strong>whether she thinks her daughter could handle the role and stand still for the ceremony etc. </strong> I don't want it to come across as "Your daughter behaves horribly..."  I'm very nervous about having this conversation with her mother, but I'm more nervous about having the ceremony ruined. Any advice would be MUCH appreciated.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]

    <div>Have her sit with her family after she walks, then.  </div><div>
    </div><div>I'm unclear on something though - she's begun behaving this badly since you asked her to be in your wedding?  Or you asked a child you didn't know to be in your wedding?  If her behavior has worsened drastically, quickly, I suspect her parents already know and likely are seeking medical attention.  If you asked a child you didn't know... why?</div>
  • I agree about letting her sit down with her mother during the ceremony. Kids who are forced to stand get restless and bored, and I don't blame them. Plus this way, if she gets rowdy, she will be right beside her mother and the mother can easily remove her if she acts up, whereas if she was up front, her mother would have to make more of a scene to go up and get her or chase her down to take her out. 
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:c74adaf2-ee7e-442b-a85a-a5c5fd6875f2">Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]I do not want to come across as a Bridezilla here, but I am very nervous about my poorly behaved niece being my flower girl. <strong> I am not wanting to cancel my request for her to be my flower girl.</strong>  However, after having asked her/her mother to be my flower girl I have spent some significant time with her and she behaves atrociously pretty much 100% of the time.  And I mean, difficult to take out in public, people staring, constantly having to apologize to strangers kind of behavior. Also, before making excuses for the child/parent, thinking she's two or three years old... This girl is seven years old and acts worse than most four year olds I've met. I am not at this moment considering revoking my request, but I do not want to have a child completely hijack the ceremony, or disrupt it significantly.  I was looking for advice on how to broach the subject with her mother of whether she thinks her daughter could handle the role and stand still for the ceremony etc.  I don't want it to come across as "Your daughter behaves horribly..."  I'm very nervous about having this conversation with her mother, but I'm more nervous about having the ceremony ruined. Any advice would be MUCH appreciated.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]

    "Cancel my request" is a new one to add to the "Kick her out of the wedding party" euphemism list.

  • Definitely have any kids in the ceremony sit with their parents after the processional, even if they are well-behaved.  Other than that, I wouldn't mention anything to the parents other than the actual plan for how she's to walk and then go sit down.  If she misbehaves, it reflects poorly on her parents, not on you, especially for her age. 
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:2c00a29d-d26d-4316-95e7-e10322467239">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Poorly Behaved Flower Girl? : <strong>Have her sit with her family after she walks, then.</strong>   <strong>I'm unclear on something though - she's begun behaving this badly since you asked her to be in your wedding?</strong> <strong> Or you asked a child you didn't know to be in your wedding? </strong> If her behavior has worsened drastically, quickly, I suspect her parents already know and likely are seeking medical attention. <strong> If you asked a child you didn't know... why?</strong>
    Posted by ceh789[/QUOTE]

    This. All of this, I agree with.

    If you know this child, then why exactly does this come as a shock to you?

    As for having her sit with her parents after she walks- this is what my flower and "ring boy" as he calls himself, are  doing. Not because I'm worried that they will misbehave, but because they are just children and are completely not going to want to stand up there for that long.
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  • To answer all your questions, I see this girl a few times a year mostly at holidays (Thanksgiving, Christmas, her birthday), and I'd seen her misbehave in her own home/family's houses, but I thought maybe that was just her comfort zone?  My now fiancee had always called her behavior horrible, but I had never been around very many children her age so had nothing to compare it to.  It wasn't until recently that I 1) spent more time with other children her age, mostly on my fiancee's side and 2) saw her behavior in public places, showing that she was not just 'in her comfort zone' at home.

    So, I did not just ask some girl I don't know to be my flower girl.  Although, I don't see how this would be strange especially if it were a child on my fiancee's side.  Our potential ring bearer is a boy I've met once - and from what I can see, very well behaved.

    I think it would be nice to assume that her mother would remove her if she started acting up, but she hasn't been removed in public situations she should have been (throwing tantrums in middle of restaurant, movie theaters etc.).  And, although a wedding is a much bigger deal than a meal or movie, I have no evidence that her mother would do the appropriate thing.

    I definitely think that having her sit down afterwards is a great idea and could eliminate a lot of the possibility for things to happen.  I will probably be taking this advice.  It makes a lot of sense.
  • Oh, and to answer why I would ask a girl I knew to be kind of a spoiled brat to be in my wedding, it's because she's the only close girl relative of mine, and know that her parents would be EXTREMELY offended if I didn't ask.  Plus, right when we got engaged she was already asking to be my flower girl... As well as bossing my fiancee around about where and when the wedding could be, and when he said the wedding might not exactly be to her qualifications she started crying and stomping her feet.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:840ddd4f-68df-40e5-8e9e-e269c81f0155">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Oh, and to answer why I would ask a girl I knew to be kind of a spoiled brat to be in my wedding, it's because she's the only close girl relative of mine, and.  Plus, right when we got engaged she was already asking to be my flower girl... <strong>As know that her parents would be EXTREMELY offended if I didn't ask</strong>well as bossing my fiancee around about where and when the wedding could be, and when he said the wedding might not exactly be to her qualifications she started crying and stomping her feet.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]


    That was probably mistake number one! You don't ask people to be in your wedding because you think or know they will be offended. Anybody who is offended by something like that, is immature.  You knew this child was a "spoiled brat" when you asked her, so therefore, you brought this upon yourself.
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:840ddd4f-68df-40e5-8e9e-e269c81f0155">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Oh, and to answer why I would ask a girl I knew to be kind of a spoiled brat to be in my wedding, it's because she's the only close girl relative of mine, and know that her parents would be EXTREMELY offended if I didn't ask.  Plus, right when we got engaged she was already asking to be my flower girl... As well as bossing my fiancee around about where and when the wedding could be, and when he said the wedding might not exactly be to her qualifications she started crying and stomping her feet.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]

    Well, in this case, I don't think you should hurt her and her mother's feelings just because you and your FI made a poor judgement call.

    Just suck it up and deal with it. Have her sit with her parents rather than stand at the altar (which is what most childrne do at weddings anyway). If you're that concerned about her behavior, tell her mother that you're happy to pay for a babysitter to look after her for the day and take her outside if she ever gets cranky.
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  • So you let a 7-year-old bully you into tailoring your wedding to her desires?

  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:83dada62-08cc-47d3-af3d-084c8cb850ea">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl? : Well, in this case, I don't think you should hurt her and her mother's feelings just because you and your FI made a poor judgement call. Just suck it up and deal with it. Have her sit with her parents rather than stand at the altar (which is what most childrne do at weddings anyway). <strong>If you're that concerned about her behavior, tell her mother that you're happy to pay for a babysitter to look after her for the day and take her outside if she ever gets cranky.
    </strong>Posted by mbcdefg[/QUOTE]

    I wouldn't do this.
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  • edited March 2012
    Wow, I'm more than a little surprised by most responses.  I didn't expect to be attacked for just asking for some advice.  I wasn't bullied by a seven year old, and I don't feel that we made a "poor judgment call."  It is honestly the only call we could have made unless we truly wanted our flower girl to be someone we didn't know at all.  You can't hire a professional flower girl.  Yes, we asked her parents if she could do it, so we realize we 'brought this upon ourselves,' but I don't think that means we can't be concerned about the situation.  I'm becoming sorry that I sought advice on this site.
  • afeliz79afeliz79 member
    Sixth Anniversary 100 Comments
    edited March 2012
    You did make a "poor judgement call". You could have not had a flower girl. You can be concerned about the situation, at this point though, there just isn't much you can do about it except what has already been suggested. Did you say this girl is your niece?
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  • edited March 2012
    Yes, you are right that it does seem the only thing that can be done is to have her sit with someone at the end.  But, to say we had the option of not having a flower girl at all, I do not agree with.  A wedding isn't only about me, it's a family affair, and both sides of our family are already having to sacrifice for our wedding (we're from opposite sides of the world).  Yes, I get the final say, but trust me, to completely cut my most important relatives (outside of my parents) out of my wedding would not have been okay.

    And yes, this girl is my one and only niece.
  • staceycainestaceycaine member
    100 Comments
    edited March 2012
    Everyone else has already said what I would have said--but when is your wedding? 7 is kind of old to be a flower girl anyway. My FI's closest cousin is 8, and we decided that is way too old to be a ring bearer.
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  • Now I am being judged for the age of my potential flower girl?  Seriously?  I've been to weddings with ages of flower girls ranging anywhere from less than a year to 12 years old, so no I wouldn't consider 7 to be much too old...  I am starting to receive attacking private messages as well, this is ridiculous.  I have received a little bit of actual non-judgmental advice from a few people (thank you RetreadBride).  I was not looking for this, I was only looking for some friendly advice.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:840ddd4f-68df-40e5-8e9e-e269c81f0155">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Oh, and to answer why I would ask a girl I knew to be kind of a spoiled brat to be in my wedding, it's because she's the only close girl relative of mine, and know that her parents would be EXTREMELY offended if I didn't ask.  <strong>Plus, right when we got engaged she was already asking to be my flower girl... As well as bossing my fiancee around about where and when the wedding could be, and when he said the wedding might not exactly be to her qualifications she started crying and stomping her feet.
    </strong>Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]

    and you STILL asked her to be in your wedding? I gotta say, you've made your bed and you cannot "cancel your request" aka kick her out of the wedding.
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  • ChelseaclayyChelseaclayy member
    Second Anniversary 10 Comments
    edited March 2012
    Like you, I'm new to this board. What you have to realize is that these girls are here to give you solid advice, not to ta-ta you and make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It's not necessary to get offended by their advice, just take it or leave it. To answer your question: I attended a wedding and the flower girl went totally nuts screaming, crying, ect. The mother immediately took her outside. Even though you say the mother does not discipline very well, I'm sure she knows that your wedding is a special event and will do something if her child gets out of hand.
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:5edb0808-a1bc-47b5-8e4a-6ccf17420cdf">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Now I am being judged for the age of my potential flower girl?  Seriously?  I've been to weddings with ages of flower girls ranging anywhere from less than a year to 12 years old, so no I wouldn't consider 7 to be much too old...  I am starting to receive attacking private messages as well, this is ridiculous.  I have received a little bit of actual non-judgmental advice from a few people (thank you RetreadBride).  I was not looking for this, I was only looking for some friendly advice.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]


    I don't feel like anyone on this board "attacked" or "judged" you. You asked for advice, and you got ours.

    My flower girl will be 7 at the time of my wedding, so I don't feel that 7 is too old. We wanted her to be a part of the wedding and  so she is. Our ring bearer will be in like the 4th or 5th grade by then too.

    As for the attacking PMs- I completely know  what you mean, its happened to me before.
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  • We had 3 flower girls ages 7, 4 and 3. We had them sit in the front row with a parent after they walked down. They did fine. Even the 3 year old who was a disaster at the rehearsal dinner.
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_poorly-behaved-flower-girl?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:37Discussion:3b667a1d-efe5-482c-96c2-693e461701f1Post:62e2fba4-e30e-4b1c-b47a-043d5b6e2f9e">Re: Poorly Behaved Flower Girl?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Yes, you are right that it does seem the only thing that can be done is to have her sit with someone at the end. <strong> But, to say we had the option of not having a flower girl at all, I do not agree with.  </strong>A wedding isn't only about me, it's a family affair, and both sides of our family are already having to sacrifice for our wedding (we're from opposite sides of the world).  Yes, I get the final say, but trust me, to completely cut my most important relatives (outside of my parents) out of my wedding would not have been okay. And yes, this girl is my one and only niece.
    Posted by auroraborealisabc[/QUOTE]

    Well, whether you agree with it or not, it was still an option to do without one. Nobody was holding a gun to your head.

    If you want to make the niece your flower girl then that's your call, but don't complain that she's going to act like a brat if she's always acted like a brat. You can't make her change just because you're getting married. You made your bed, now lie in it.
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