(Closed) We don't want kids at the wedding, but…

posted 5 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
7773 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Just say no! Say something along the lines of the truth: that inviting everyone’s kids would make it way too expensive.

Depending on the venue, you might consider allowing kids at the ceremony though. That’s the part young girls want to see anyway, in my experience. They don’t care about the reception, which is basically an adults’ party. We had a church wedding and a number of guests brought their kids to the ceremony only.

Post # 4
46264 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

It’s so much easier if you can react immediately when confronted with behavior like this.

” We have chosen to have an adult only wedding.” is all you need to say.

Don’t make any excuses about budget, the size of the venue etc. There wil always be someone who offers to pay for extra guests or squeeze more people at their table etc.

Given that didn’t happen, rather than have this family start planning and possibly buying the girls’ dresses etc, I would have your Fiance call his cousin and set him straight right now.

Post # 5
257 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

@julies1949:  +1 exactly this!! Nip it in the bud now, otherwise you’ll end up with a mes later!!

Post # 6
2204 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

I would enlist the help of your Future Mother-In-Law. Its her family, let her deal with that drama.

Post # 7
3720 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

Have  you really thought about the no kids thing? What is your reason? It is a highly political decision and I recommend you think about it, talk to your families, and make sure your consider all sides. If  you do say no kids, what is the cut off? What about families with one kid over and one under? Please prepare for these questions before you get the ring and have to answer to everyone.

I really thought about no kids, but we decided that a kid free wedding wasn’t worth the fight. We made sure parents realized it was open bar with adults who like to black out and let the party animal friends know there are 40 under 18s invited. We will be inviting kids to the ceremony (it is a church, so it is an open door policy and you cannot keep them from coming), will be seating non-family 1-12 years olds downstairs with a babysitter, and then everyone is welcome for cake and dancing.

Having this policy got us good will with the parents and most people that I have talked to are leaving the kids home. They don’t want their kids exposed to open bar craziness, with an unkown babysitter, a long mass, and lots of behaving. It was way easier than trying to explain Susie wasn’t invited because I don’t want to pay $10 for her kids meal or she may be a brat.

Post # 9
986 posts
Busy bee

I wouldn’t explain yourself at all. Just say you made the decision to have an adult only wedding. Adult = 18. Done!

Post # 10
200 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2012

@Miss Otter:  +1.  I agree, it’s your wedding you don’t have to explain yourself. 

We chose to have an adult only reception.  One of my friends raised a stink about about.  She wanted her kids to come.  I told her no numerous times, but she still kept bringing on the subject.  Finally I respectfully told her that on her RSVP card there was an option for “I decline with regrets”.  She ended up coming with her husband only and she was one of the last people to leave the dancefloor.

People imposing guests at weddings is my biggest pet peeve!!!

Post # 11
642 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2013

I wouldnt say anything.  Just send the invite to him and his wife, word is bound to get around the family if it has not already.  Its nothing personal to them, they should understand that. 

I have 2 kids, and personally, I would give anything to have a night out without them lol no offence to my babies but mama needs fun too!

Post # 13
1482 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

We had a child free wedding, and we let it get around via word of mouth ahead of time (well before invites were sent out) that it was a child-free wedding.


Post # 14
872 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

I caved to allowing kids at my soon-to-be wedding because I didn’t want to start any kind of a fight, but in the end it doesn’t really bother me. 

If it would be bothersome to you, if you don’t have the budget to allow kids, if you don’t want to set up activities for kids at the wedding then you shouldn’t be expected to. You don’t owe anyone an explaination for why because this is your two’s wedding and the day is about the marriage between you two. 

If this cousin does put up a fight remain calm and tell him that is the decision both you and your soon-to-be fiance’ has choosen, and that is all he needs to know. I’ve dealt with people like that cousin and giving them more information to go will mean more of a debate on his end, so keep your explaination short and simple. 

I wouldn’t just send him an invite and hope he gets it. 

Post # 16
604 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2014 - Narrawallee reserve/beach & Mollymook golf club

 Have you considered having them at the wedding, but not the reception? People say it’s rude to have a “tiered wedding”, but when it comes to a child-free wedding we’re making that exception to the rule. A wedding is a perfectly fine environment for children, but quite often receptions just aren’t. Ours simply just isn’t (evening, alcohol, loud obnoxious adults meets more conservative families), so no U18s at the reception.

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