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Etiquette

Over 21 Ceremony and Reception - Families with children on both sides of 21

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Re: Over 21 Ceremony and Reception - Families with children on both sides of 21

  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited May 2015


    I'm confused about the use of "children" I'm thinking "small children" and "older children". But she's talking about an age difference of 1-2 years between the 18+ "Children" and the younger "Children". In that case, it should be all or nothing, if you are inviting 4/5 children in the family, it may not technically be against etiquette if they get their own invites, but the youngest may feel hurt not to be invited. 

    OP clearly said in the OP that it was an issue of "children" over the age of 21 versus some who are under. You still thought it was all or nothing then, even when she didn't clarify until later that there was a 17, 18, and 21 yo sibling in a family.
    Yeah, at 17 I'd be pissed as hell and think WTF if I was not invited by my other two siblings and parents would.

    As the 18 and 21 year old sibling, I'd think WTF if my 17yo sibling was not invited with my other sibling and my parents.

    As the parents, I'd think WTF?

    As other guests related to this particular family i'd think WTF?
    redoryx said:

    lyndausvi said:

    Are you very close to your older cousins? You're not obligated to invite them at all... would it be a cleaner break to invite only your aunts and uncles but none of your cousins?


    It is an incredibly complicated family dynamic, I grew up with my mom,dad,two sisters, grandma, uncle, and aunt in one home. Every family occasion (from weekly get togethers to major holidays) includes 100+ people at a minimum. So I grew up closely involved in most of their lives, we all call and talk still even though my generation is mostly grown. 

    Inviting in circles then poses the same set of issues really and in terms of closeness, I am close to almost all of them, there are obviously a small handfull that I am closer to than the whole group but I just don't think I could only invite ten of them.
    Then why didn't you pick a venue that can hold everyone within your budget?

    IDK, I feel like you made this more complicated by picking a choice that you can't afford who you want.


    FWIW - I do not get picking a random number of guests to host.    As I said I have a huge family.  I picked a location within my budget to invite them all.  Sure i might have wanted a nicer venue, but having my family there was more important.
    OP said there were several reasons they decided on adults-only, so I'm wondering if another one of those reasons negated the need to pick a venue that would hold the entire family within budget (like truly wanting a child-free wedding)?
    But it's not really adults only. It's 21 and over only. Which is fine, but I don't understand how the OP didn't take her 18, 19, and 20 year old cousins into account when she made that cut off. It's as if she's suddenly surprised by this or something.
    No, it's not if it's splitting up a family.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • lyndausvi said:


    Then why didn't you pick a venue that can hold everyone within your budget?

    IDK, I feel like you made this more complicated by picking a choice that you can't afford who you want.


    FWIW - I do not get picking a random number of guests to host.    As I said I have a huge family.  I picked a location within my budget to invite them all.  Sure i might have wanted a nicer venue, but having my family there was more important.
    As I stated in the OP My fiance and I are paying for this ourselves, we have a guest list that could potentially peak at over five hundred once both families and friends are listed to completion. We picked a venue and caterer that in the last eight months of searching has been the lowest price with the largest space. 

    We didn't pick a random number of guests, nor did we pick an arbitrary age. The number of guests was calculated at each venue we interviewed and we picked the one where we could afford the most. The age is because we plan on serving alcohol, so it is less worrisome if there are limited under 21's (my sister and step brother are currently the only exceptions). 

    Mostly my question was regarding etiquette. That being the case there are points to both sides of the argument, I think some hurt feelings are just going to have to happen, I will just minimize as best as I can. Thank you all for your help!
  • redoryxredoryx member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    Okay, I agree the 21 age cut off is random and arbitrary and not the best. I'm going to guess it has something to do with alcohol. Making it 18+ probably would have been better because the OP can just make a blanket adults only rule and be in the clear.

    But this begs a question:
    We say it is against etiquette to split up a family unit. 
    We also say it's perfectly within etiquette to only invite adults 18 and over.

    So how does one reconcile those things when there are two siblings, one who is a legal adult and one who is not? 
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  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited May 2015
    redoryx said:

    Okay, I agree the 21 age cut off is random and arbitrary and not the best. I'm going to guess it has something to do with alcohol. Making it 18+ probably would have been better because the OP can just make a blanket adults only rule and be in the clear.


    But this begs a question:
    We say it is against etiquette to split up a family unit. 
    We also say it's perfectly within etiquette to only invite adults 18 and over.

    So how does one reconcile those things when there are two siblings, one who is a legal adult and one who is not? 
    I've always said you should not split up MINOR kids.    Minor kids are attached to their parent's invite.   I do not think it's proper to pick and choose which minor kids you want to invite.  It's awkward for everyone involved. 

    Once you are an adult then you are invited on your own, not via your parents.  For example,  if the family has 2 adult kids you can invite one without the other.   Sure the minor child might be disappointed, but that's life.  

    Let's face it at some point you need to be removed from your family unit.   If not any invite my sister got I should get to.   We all know that is just silly. I think minor vs adult is a reasonable line to draw.    

        






    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. 
    SP29huskypuppy14STARMOON44simcal18
  • theartistformerlyknownastheartistformerlyknownas peaced out. member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers First Anniversary
    edited May 2015
    lyndausvi said:

    Okay, I agree the 21 age cut off is random and arbitrary and not the best. I'm going to guess it has something to do with alcohol. Making it 18+ probably would have been better because the OP can just make a blanket adults only rule and be in the clear.

    But this begs a question:
    We say it is against etiquette to split up a family unit. 
    We also say it's perfectly within etiquette to only invite adults 18 and over.

    So how does one reconcile those things when there are two siblings, one who is a legal adult and one who is not? 
    I've always said you should not split up MINOR kids.    Minor kids are attached to their parent's invite.   I do not think it's proper to pick and choose which minor kids you want to invite.  It's awkward for everyone involved. 

    Once you are an adult then you are invited on your own, not via your parents.  For example,  if the family has 2 adult kids you can invite one without the other.   Sure the minor child might be disappointed, but that's life.  

    Let's face it at some point you need to be removed from your family unit.   If not any invite my sister got I should get to.   We all know that is just silly. I think minor vs adult is a reasonable line to draw.    

        


    Exactly this. Should I have invited all of my friends' siblings? Their parents? Of course not; they're autonomous adults. 

    Children don't receive their own invitations to things; they're included on their parents' invitations. That's why they can't be split apart from each other. The FAMILY in that case, adults + minor children, is seen as one social unit. Same reason you can't invite a minor child and not his or her parents. Adults receive their own - they're totally separated from their siblings now.

    OP this is just a tough call you're going to have to weigh the pros and cons on yourself. There will be negative consequences either way, either in the form of hurt feelings or hurt finances... you have to own them. That's life.

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    SP29
  • So the etiquette rules are these:

    - It's fine to have an adult only wedding.
    - You're in the clear if you only invite 18 and up. People over 18 are adults and there's no "splitting families".
    - Adults (18+) get their own invitation.

    So you're kind of out of the etiquette realm and into a WWYD question. So what would I do? I would just use my best judgement based on what I wanted and family dynamics - keeping in mind the budget. 

    Look, I know it's hard because you want to invite everyone and not hurt feelings, but on a budget that isn't reasonable. I invited some second cousins and not others. They're all in the same family and all siblings, but they're all adults, so oh well. I'm close to 2 of them and not close to the other 2. That's just the way the cookie crumbles sometimes.
    *********************************************************************************

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    huskypuppy14
  • I hope you're planning on inviting the Significant Others for every adult you're inviting.  This means, for even people who are currently single, you should count them as two people while you're doing your budgeting just in case they get into a relationship between now and when your invitations go out.  So, if your 21 year old cousin is inviting someone, that someone gets invited on your cousin's invitation.  You can't just include the 21 year old as an accessory to their parents' invitation if even they live in the same house.  And you MUST invite the SO even if they've only been dating for a couple months.
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited May 2015
    redoryx said:

    Okay, I agree the 21 age cut off is random and arbitrary and not the best. I'm going to guess it has something to do with alcohol. Making it 18+ probably would have been better because the OP can just make a blanket adults only rule and be in the clear.


    But this begs a question:
    We say it is against etiquette to split up a family unit. 
    We also say it's perfectly within etiquette to only invite adults 18 and over.

    So how does one reconcile those things when there are two siblings, one who is a legal adult and one who is not? 
    I'd just invite both kids or neither. That's why inviting in circles makes more sense.

    DHs has a large extended family; there are over 20 grandkids, so he has a fuckton of cousins.

    Had we gone with an arbitrary age cut off of 18+, in several instances we would have excluded 1 or 2 cousins while the entire rest of their family would have been invited. That just would have been a dick move, and even though his family is well versed in wedding etiquette they also would have thought it was a dick move.


    ETA: If we had used the arbitrary age cut off of 21+ we would have even more situations where parts of the same particular family were excluded.

    However, if we invited in circles and used Aunts/Uncles only as the cutoff, that would have been much better reveived.

    OP, your age cut off is arbitrary, despite your rationalization. You can have underaged people at events that are serving alcohol without them being served. It's quite the norm. It's your venue's/caterer's/bartender's responsibility not to serve minors.

    I had 150 guests at my wedding, some were under 21, and none of those under 21 were served.

    ETA: You can stick with your age cutoffs, and you may be in the clear due to a technicality, but as Lynda mentioned above, just because technically you are doing the right thing per etiquette doesn't mean you aren't going to piss people off or hurt their feelings, and they would be entitled to those feelings.

    Good luck!

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • VulgarGirlVulgarGirl Desert Oasis member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Anniversary Name Dropper
    I say just elope.

    Then you don't have to invite anyone.

    Still kind of wishing we would have just eloped.
    image
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    ashley8918
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    MagicInk said:

    I say just elope.


    Then you don't have to invite anyone.

    Still kind of wishing we would have just eloped.
    Me too ><

    I'm glad everyone had a great time, thanks in large part to things I learned here, but. . .eloping would have been less hassle and less expensive. And for the record, I wanted to elope but DH wanted the damn party ><

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • Cookie PusherCookie Pusher Looking over your shoulder member
    Seventh Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    MagicInk said:

    I say just elope.


    Then you don't have to invite anyone.

    Still kind of wishing we would have just eloped.
    Me too ><

    I'm glad everyone had a great time, thanks in large part to things I learned here, but. . .eloping would have been less hassle and less expensive. And for the record, I wanted to elope but DH wanted the damn party ><
    This, exactly. The party was great and all, but it did set us back tremendously in saving for a house. As in, we'd have a house already if we didn't have that party. At least DH got what he wanted and stopped whining, ha!
    ~*~*~*~*~

    PrettyGirlLost
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer

    MagicInk said:

    I say just elope.


    Then you don't have to invite anyone.

    Still kind of wishing we would have just eloped.
    Me too ><

    I'm glad everyone had a great time, thanks in large part to things I learned here, but. . .eloping would have been less hassle and less expensive. And for the record, I wanted to elope but DH wanted the damn party ><
    This, exactly. The party was great and all, but it did set us back tremendously in saving for a house. As in, we'd have a house already if we didn't have that party. At least DH got what he wanted and stopped whining, ha!
    Us too.

    I KNOW, knotties. It was stupid to spend that much on a wedding.


    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • SP29SP29 member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I think you're clear on the etiquette now.

    What would I do? I'd try to invite in circles. Just because you invite one set of cousins doesn't mean you need to invite other cousins. 

    Unless your close to a lot of these "kids" I would consider not inviting any if it pushes your guest list up. 
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer


    I'm confused about the use of "children" I'm thinking "small children" and "older children". But she's talking about an age difference of 1-2 years between the 18+ "Children" and the younger "Children". In that case, it should be all or nothing, if you are inviting 4/5 children in the family, it may not technically be against etiquette if they get their own invites, but the youngest may feel hurt not to be invited. 

    OP clearly said in the OP that it was an issue of "children" over the age of 21 versus some who are under. You still thought it was all or nothing then, even when she didn't clarify until later that there was a 17, 18, and 21 yo sibling in a family.
    Yeah, at 17 I'd be pissed as hell and think WTF if I was not invited by my other two siblings and parents would.

    As the 18 and 21 year old sibling, I'd think WTF if my 17yo sibling was not invited with my other sibling and my parents.

    As the parents, I'd think WTF?

    As other guests related to this particular family i'd think WTF?
    redoryx said:

    lyndausvi said:

    Are you very close to your older cousins? You're not obligated to invite them at all... would it be a cleaner break to invite only your aunts and uncles but none of your cousins?


    It is an incredibly complicated family dynamic, I grew up with my mom,dad,two sisters, grandma, uncle, and aunt in one home. Every family occasion (from weekly get togethers to major holidays) includes 100+ people at a minimum. So I grew up closely involved in most of their lives, we all call and talk still even though my generation is mostly grown. 

    Inviting in circles then poses the same set of issues really and in terms of closeness, I am close to almost all of them, there are obviously a small handfull that I am closer to than the whole group but I just don't think I could only invite ten of them.
    Then why didn't you pick a venue that can hold everyone within your budget?

    IDK, I feel like you made this more complicated by picking a choice that you can't afford who you want.


    FWIW - I do not get picking a random number of guests to host.    As I said I have a huge family.  I picked a location within my budget to invite them all.  Sure i might have wanted a nicer venue, but having my family there was more important.
    OP said there were several reasons they decided on adults-only, so I'm wondering if another one of those reasons negated the need to pick a venue that would hold the entire family within budget (like truly wanting a child-free wedding)?
    But it's not really adults only. It's 21 and over only. Which is fine, but I don't understand how the OP didn't take her 18, 19, and 20 year old cousins into account when she made that cut off. It's as if she's suddenly surprised by this or something.
    No, it's not if it's splitting up a family.
    Splitting up a family doesn't matter if they are all adults. It is perfectly acceptable within etiquette, and this is the etiquette board.  My parents and my sister were invited to a wedding I wasn't invited to.This wasn't a family member, but that is irrelevant. We were adults and the bride and groom have every right to invite who they want to invite. Are you invited to every wedding your siblings are invited to? 

    I also think 21 is a perfectly fine cuttoff, because in the US you can legally drink at that age, so that seems like a reasonable cuttoff age to me. If it was 25 I'd think that was weird. If the 19 year old sibling of a 21 year old guest is upset, well she/he needs to learn that you aren't invited to everything. A 21 year old can go to a bar and the 19 year old can't. Too bad so sad.

    Yes there could be family drama, but only the OP knows what her family dynamics are. I agree with pp it might make sense to not invite any cousins.
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  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Yes, for FAMILY weddings, my siblings and I have been invited to every wedding.

    We don't get invited to the others' friends and co workers' weddings, obviously.

    I don't care what board this question is asked, I will always answer in the same manner- arbitrary age cut offs for invites are just that, arbitrary, and they often result in splitting up families, regardless of what is technically OK per etiquette; even if everyone is considered an adult, if you have a family of 5 people and 4 out of 5 are invited to a wedding, you have split up the family.

    Inviting in circles makes way more sense. . .which you also seem to agree with in the OPs case.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


  • kvrunskvruns member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer

    lyndausvi said:


    Then why didn't you pick a venue that can hold everyone within your budget?

    IDK, I feel like you made this more complicated by picking a choice that you can't afford who you want.


    FWIW - I do not get picking a random number of guests to host.    As I said I have a huge family.  I picked a location within my budget to invite them all.  Sure i might have wanted a nicer venue, but having my family there was more important.
    As I stated in the OP My fiance and I are paying for this ourselves, we have a guest list that could potentially peak at over five hundred once both families and friends are listed to completion. We picked a venue and caterer that in the last eight months of searching has been the lowest price with the largest space. 

    We didn't pick a random number of guests, nor did we pick an arbitrary age. The number of guests was calculated at each venue we interviewed and we picked the one where we could afford the most. The age is because we plan on serving alcohol, so it is less worrisome if there are limited under 21's (my sister and step brother are currently the only exceptions). 

    Mostly my question was regarding etiquette. That being the case there are points to both sides of the argument, I think some hurt feelings are just going to have to happen, I will just minimize as best as I can. Thank you all for your help!
    The bolded update stood out to me. Now it seems like the issue isn't so much space as an issue but rather not wanting anyone under 21 since you are serving alcohol.  Will a dry wedding allow you to invite the others (freeing up budget from alcohol)? Does the venue require a separate space for alcohol vs non alcoholic, is that why you are not wanting under 21s? Or concern about kids trying to get drinks underage?
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