Post # 1
I’ve since had my wedding and no longer have to deal with wedding politics (thank GOD!), however, I still like to lurk and see how wedding trends change over time. One issue that is constantly debated is the kids/no kids at weddings issue. My observation/question is to those that suggest (or have themselves provided) that the bride and groom pay for a babysitter for the children of guests attending their wedding. While I understand that it is a nice gesture, I’m not sure why childcare should be the responsibility of the bride and groom. If said bride and groom invited a friend with children to dinner, should the bride and groom arrange and pay for childcare? When did it become the responsibility of hosts to provide childcare? Shouldn’t parents be able to find and pay for their own childcare?
Post # 3
I feel like if that’s what they want to do, that’s going above and beyond and is a nice gesture. It shouldn’t be expected though!
Post # 4
@VegasSukie: I think this only applies in certain situations. This is a choice and I don’t think it’s looked down upon if the bride and groom aren’t paying for child care. I think it only becomes an issue when the bride and groom are insisting on a child free wedding and get all bent out of shape when someone can’t come due to not having child care. If it’s an issue, they should pay for it and offer a solution so the guest can come. Other than that specific kind of scenario I haven’t heard that its like a requirement if its a child free wedding that the bride and groom automatically have to offer child care.
Post # 5
It depends on a lot of things. If it is a Destination Wedding then I think it is appropriate to provide childcare.
If it is a Destination Wedding for certain couples with children it is also appropriate.
If only “chosen” children are invited and others not I think it is nice to offer so the parents of children who weren’t chosen feel less slighted.
Since this no children thing causes such drama, I’d think you’d want to keep the peace as best as possible, and hiring a sitter can ease the drama, IMO.
Post # 6
I don’t like the “no kids at the wedding” trend that’s going on. To me personally – children are a part of family – I want family to celebrate and be part of my special day, all family, of all ages. That would be like….Not inviting old people because they bail out right after dinner and are lame and don’t dance. The are downers at weddings. Right? So why invite old people if they don’t make the weddings fun? Kids at least go out and dance! LOL Just making a point here. I have memories of going to family weddings when I was a kid. And enjoy those memories and looking at pictures. But that’s just my opinion.
Post # 7
@rickhurst35: That is like comparing apples and oranges in my opinion and most of the time I don’t think couples exclude children that are important to them they just want a childfree wedding when they don’t have any children that they are close to!
This was my situation. I don’t have children in my family yet and so the only children that I could invite would be my friends kids who I am not close too! In my situation all my friends were delighted to have a childfree night and my wedding ended up being 100% what I wanted – a grown-up party!
Post # 8
I agree that it is a nice gesture, however, it seems like all of the responsibility (for lack of a better word) is placed on the bride and groom. For example, the argument is constantly made that if the B&G really want so and so to attend then they HAVE to make accommodations for the children (which is fine/true). But what about the invited guests with children that really want to attend the wedding? If they really want to attend and have ample notice, shouldn’t they be the ones to make accomodations for their kids so they could attend without them? Why does it automatically get thrown back at the hosts? If it is important to a guest with children to attend a wedding, I feel like they should be the ones to do what they need to in order to attend without trying to guilt the couple into changing their parameters.
Post # 9
I think there are a variety of factors on whether or not childcare is offered. If a couple has the budget and wants to do it, awesome! But for guests to try and guilt their children into an invite to a child-free wedding or to expect childcare be provided, that’s rude. Even if it’s a destination wedding. What people seem to fail to remember is that more and more couples are footing the majority if not the entire bill for their wedding.
That being said, I think people need to be grown ups about wedding invitations and RSVPs. A grown up would understand that someone can’t attend because they have lives too or that sometimes people have to work on budgets and can’t accomodate everyone.
Post # 10
@VegasSukie: my cousin is traveling to our wedding from out of state, about a 5 hour drive. we are having a childfree wedding. we would still like to see his kids at the rehearsal dinner and sunday brunch. so when we sent the Save-The-Date Cards, we told him we would love to have him and to see his kids and will provide a baby sitter for him.
on the otherhand, my FI’s neices ages 2, 4, and 8 will have a babysitter provided by their mother because they live in town.
Post # 11
I am having a child-free wedding. It will be the responsibility of everyone invited to find childcare. My wedding should be no different from a night out with friends or a date night with just adults. Why is it anyone else’s responsibility to pay for the childcare?
My only exception is that I will offer a hotel babysitter for my 2 1/2 year old nephew and my newborn niece or nephew. My sister’s baby will be 3 months old and my sister needs to be reasonably close to the baby to pump. My nephew is my ring boy and I cannot imagine him not going to the wedding because of how close we are. So, because they are my sibling’s children (FI has no nieces or nephews) and they or their parents are playing active roles in my wedding, I am going to volunteer to pay for a babysitter at a hotel for the reception. I am not paying for the hotel room- just the babysitter.
Post # 12
@ohmybears48: I agree that a wedding is no different than a regular night out in the sense that if people with children want to attend, they are responsible for securing and paying for their own childcare. It’s confusing to me why so many people insist that brides and grooms should provide babysitters at weddings even if they do really, really want said guests to attend. I get that it is a nice gesture, but it is not a requirement or even some Emily Post rule (that I know of). It seems like parents feel very entitled when it comes to weddings, even though I’m sure they have no problem finding babysitters when it suits them.
Post # 13
I also do not understand the thought process that couples should offer childcare so they can have a childfree wedding. I adore my grandkids but I am happy to attend childfree weddings. Quite happy.
A wedding is no different than anything else. When you become a parent you just signed up for many missed social opportunities because there will be times you can’t get a sitter. it is part of parenting. Your friends have awesome concert tickets and offer 2 of them to you. Does it become their problem to find you daycare so you can attend the concert? Nope.
You receive a wedding invitation. You can find a sitter so you accept! You can’t find a sitter and you have to decline. It is what you sign up for when you have kids. I missed my fair share of events due to not being able to get a sitter. I stayed home. It is what you do.
The only time I ever have an issue with child free weddings is when the couple gets their knickers in a knot because someone with kids refuses to come. When our last Dirty Delete got married it was no kids. DH’s 2 sisters did not attend the wedding because of this. DD graciously accepted the declines and didn’t throw a fit because her aunts weren’t coming. Two way street there.
Post # 14
@VegasSukie: Exactly! There is a huge sense of entitlement and expectation of accomodation these days by guests that go beyond the no children/children issue. People upset over dates, food, locations, the list is endless. I understand that sometimes B&Gs are selfish but who isn’t sometimes?
Post # 15
@rickhurst35: I completely agree!! I had kids at my first wedding when I was child free and loved it. We had hoola hoops for them and I got some great pictures of them having fun. It made the adults have fun too. And I got some awesome pictures of me with the kiddos.
Now for my second wedding, I have kids as do most of my friends and family so there is no way I would have a wedding without the whole family. Honestly, having the kids at the wedding is one of the things I am most looking forward to at our upcoming wedding. Watching them all dance and have fun is going to be a blast. Out of 100 people, 30 of them will be kids aged from 1 up to 17.
I’m even having kids at the bridal luncheon (not shower because I don’t want gifts).
Post # 16
We’re likely offering childcare because most of our guests will be coming in from out of town. Fiance and I are both only children, and are not particularly close to our cousins. There are NO small children that we are close to. However, a few of our friends just had babies, so we realize that if we want the parents at our wedding, we’ll have to accomodate the children somehow. It’s within our budget, and we feel, a nice gesture to our guests. If we couldn’t afford it, however, we wouldn’t do it.