Post # 1
I need some advice regarding my adults “only” reception. Basically, I’m allowing the children in the ceremony to attend the reception (my 3 year old daughter and her 4 year old cousin). They’ll both be leaving shortly after dinner and then it will truly be adults only from then on. I thought it was clear that we’re having an adults only reception… our invites only included the adults names and we had family members spreading the word that children were not invited. Apparently, it wasn’t clear enough because I’ve received numerous requests by parents to bring their children.
All of the inquires were via email and I responded by saying a simple “We’re actually having an adult’s only reception. We hope you and (insert other adult) can still make it!”
Now I’m worried that they’ll be upset to see my daughter and her cousin at the reception. Should I have said in my response that only children in the ceremony will be attending? Will it be obvious that they’re invited because they’re in the ceremony? It would be obvious to me, but I guess other people don’t get the not-so-subtle hints.
Ugghhhh. I feel like I’ve messed everything up. Is there anything I should do at this point? Do I re-contact the people who contacted me and explain that children in the ceremony will be attending. Do I just move-on and stop worrying about it? Will I be destined to nasty glares at the reception for not being more clear?
Post # 3
No they are members of the wedding party. It’s definitely ok to make that exception.
Post # 4
God I cannot STAND people who assume their children are invited somewhere, especially to a wedding that has a pretty specific set of etiquette guidelines. You can have whatever kids you want, 1, 4, 25…and not others. It’s YOUR choice so don’t worry that you’ve made a bad decision.
They are the ones making a bad and tacky decision. Unfortunately you, fiance, or parents will have to call up and explain. “Sorry for the confusion, but I just wanted to clarify that we are only able to extend an invitation to….. ” If they ask why, all you need to say is that’s the decision we’ve made because our venue and plans aren’t kid friendly, again we’re really sorry for the confusion, and we really hope you’ll still be able to make it.
Post # 5
FWIW, that’s what I’m doing. No kids except for my flower girls.
Post # 6
Thanks for the support! I’ve had several people say that because “adults only” wasn’t explicitly listed on the invite, they “didn’t know” they couldn’t bring their children (even though they had been told by a different relative that children weren’t invited). They’re right, it wasn’t stated on the invite but I was under the impression that only the people listed on the invite envelope were invited. I guess not everyone feels that way…
Post # 7
@missmedicine: I don’t think you did anything wrong. I would fully expect to see the children in the bridal party at least at dinner of an adults-only reception. I wouldn’t think anything of it.
I think it only gets messy when you don’t have a clear cut off, but you do. Now, if you said you were inviting 20 kids, but not everyone’s, then I think people would take issue.
Post # 8
@missmedicine: if ANYONE has a problem with YOUR DAUGHTER being invited but not THEIR CHILDREN then they are crazy!
I think what you’re doing is very normal.
Post # 9
What’s the point of preschoolers at the reception anyway? They have no part to play there.
My daughter was once in a wedding like yours. (She was Flower Girl, bride’s son was ring bearer, both were 3). They were both taken to be babysat after the ceremony and photos, though I’ve no idea who took the bride’s son and I’m sure it would’ve been ok to make an exception for him.
I never like making exceptions for kids because they in the bridal party, because wearing a special dress/suit makes a kid no better behaved. I do think it’s ok to make exceptions for kids based on closeness to the bride and groom though. In other words, it’s fine to make an exception for your own daughter. It’s also ok to make an exception for all nieces and nephews. I’d be uncomfortable though if there were other nieces/nephews not in the bridal party, and you only invited the one in the bridal party.
Post # 10
I did the same thing, although I had 8 kids in the bridal party and they stayed all night. I also had one very newborn, whose parents and grandparents had to travel to be there. A couple were pissed, but they are always special needs no matter the situation.
As others noted, those guests are tacky, not you. You have the right to invite or not, whomever you want. They can’t just show up with other people. It’s a wedding, not a Tupperware party.
Besides, how many of them had children at their weddings?
Post # 11
I think it’s perfectly fine to make that exception. We are only including children of relatives which makes a difference of 8 kids vs. 40+ kids. As long as you stick to your rule, I think people will understand.
Post # 12
@missmedecine: you did the right thing. It’s really not right to write “adults only” or “no children” The envelope has the names of the people you intended to include!
Don’t stress, you did the right thing!!!
Post # 13
@missmedicine: they are in the wedding party and that’s a perfectly okay exception to make; if people are offended, tough cookies. I will also only be having one child at our reception: the ring bearer (and incidentally, one of the cutest kids walking this planet!)
Post # 14
We are having my brothers and sisters (I’m the eldest of 7 so there will be kids as young as 7mths) and my FIs son.. They will attend the ceremony and reception but no other kids are welcome.
I think its pretty normal to have the bridal party and your own child at the reception..
Post # 15
I was worried about this too… then I remembered it was my wedding and poo on anyone who didn’t see that I couldn’t kick the kids in the wedding party to the curb! I asked around though (im paranoid) and everyone said it was perfectly acceptable to do that. (Have them there, not kick them to thr curb or leave them at the church.. ya know) I ended up having one child there on the day of (my jr groomsman) and no one said a word to me or my hubby. Also, I explained to my Mother-In-Law that the venue was not for small children, (lofts, open bar, evening reception, lots of young adults) and although she was all for everyone bringing their kids, after I explained it she even said that people who bring their children to a reception rarely watch them and she wanted to enjoy the evening and wouldn’t if she was worried about watching kids. So After I had her on my side… it was easy. If you are having problems, you can always suggest a reputable local sitter for those guests that may need some recommendations, but be sure you know they are good ones!
Post # 16
I think I would contact the members of your family who are inquiring about their children, just to let them know [again] that it’s adult only.
We’re having an adult only reception with 2 exceptions, my flower girl & my little cousin [which I’ll probably make him an usher, he’ll be like 14 at the time].