(Closed) Breast-Feeding Babies and Weddings …. Personal Vent

posted 11 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 47
313 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

To whoever wrote that they couldn’t imagine a newborn causing a fuss at a wedding, have you ever spent time with a baby?

I think it would be hard to find a bee who would be offended if a new mother chose not to attend her wedding. If someone feels unfairly excluded from a wedding, they should consider the feelings of the couple and the other guests. If your child is crying during the ceremony and you spend the reception looking after them, are you really supporting the couple?

Post # 48
227 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I personally would not have a problem with a newborn at my wedding. This is a personal preference and the bride can each have their own.

However I will not buy into the “don’t seperate the baby and mother while nursing” argument. If people can work for 8 hours a day while breastfeeding, they can make it to your wedding without the newborn. Bring a pump…



Post # 49
83 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Personally, I have no problem with it. As my sister-in-law and my brother just had twins! She’s one of my bridesmaids and my brother is the best man.  The twins will only be about 4-5 months old at my wedding, and yes I want nothing more than to have them there.

I can’t imagine she would be comfortable nursing in public, haha, so we do have a room for the bridal party where she can sit. Either way, I have no problem with it! I guess it just depends on the person.

Post # 50
1770 posts
Buzzing bee

I’m for adults only weddings–personally, I wish that my wedding could be that way but Fiance’s Sister has two children under 5 who can be LOUD. :/

I will say that I will be using lactational amenorrhea method to avoid pregnancy and space children and in order to use this method there are 6 rules, pretty much you need to be around your infant as much as possible and breastfeed on demand and to pacify your child, not use bottles, pacifier, etc.  I understand that this will put a hindrance in any future outings while I use this method and I will gladly decline if I’m invited to an adult’s only event. I plan on being a stay at home mother with my children when they aren’t in school.

My issue is that children (infants/newborns included) can be loud.  Infants/newborns cue their parents for breastfeeding by crying.  I would hate to interrupt a friend’s special one time event so that I could attend.  With that said, if you have a Bridesmaid or Best Man that’s breastfeeding on demand, then you either need to let them off the hook or accept their newborn coming.

One thing I hate is when I’m at Mass is children crying, parents are sooo rude not to remove their insubordinate children who fuss and run up and down the aisle.  There are good children and there are badly behaving children, and sadly, the badly behaving ones are those that ruin or mess up an event…they’re remembered.

Post # 51
3340 posts
Sugar bee

I think it’s important to denote the difference between a nursing newborn and a nursing infant/toddler.  There is just no way to leave a nursing newborn with anyone else.  Formula fed newborns, yes, but nursing newborns, no.

And to the thought that they are quiet and can therefore be left somewhere else for four hours…no.  They feed every two-three hours, so you can’t just leave them with someone else for four hours.

Plus no one is thinking of how uncomfortable the mother will be.  She’ll need to nurse or pump every two-three hours as well!

Basically I have NEVER seen a post about forcing nursing mothers to leave their newborns with a sitter from anyone who has actually HAD kids.  If you ever had a baby, you might understand.  But kharma is tricky.  Just wait til you have babies of your own…and you’ll realize how unreasonable it is!

Post # 52
8375 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

I think (some) people have a very negative connotation about babies because, frankly, there are a lot of bad/ignorant parents out there! My SIL is nothing like all the bad mommies I ran into when I was waiting tables!!!

You know them. You’ve seen them…and face it, they’rve forever imprinted bad ideas of babies in your head!


Post # 53
1300 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

@gionetto – actually US culture USED to be like that everywhere, and still is in very small towns (i.e. takes a villiage type thing). its a type of place i grew up in, where you played with other kids, and if you messed up the closest adult disciplined you and set you straight then told your parents later so they could handle it as well.

you ended up with better behaved children.

i think one of the reasons why i dont like kids in general is because im sick of parents who dont discipline their children and allow them to act out. i learned early on how to act in certain situations and if i stepped out of line there was no judgemental “i know better than you” folks breathing down my parents neck if they chose to discipline me. no time outs, no soft stuff. you learned and that was that.

I have half sisters that know NOT to bring their children to my house because they lack discipline, and if they are in MY house they will NOT act like animals and will behave because i will not tolerate it. they dont like my rules so they dont come by anymore, and just fine with me since i like a tidy and stress free home.

if more people would be responsible about their children and raise them to realize what is appropriate and isnt appropriate AND were respectful of folks around them, the whole kids at weddings thing might not be an issue.

i know this really doesnt apply to the nursing babies at weddings, but it kind of does. if parents were more respectful of folks around them you wouldnt get the eyerolls and icy glares in restaurants when you dont take your child outside and instead choose to openly ignore them and allow them to disturb others when they start having a tantrum in the middle of dinner. THEN they get mad when you speak up and tell the child to behave.

*stepping off soapbox* lol sorry that post just jogged my memory.

Post # 54
56 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I completely and totally agree with everything your saying. I just had a baby and if someone told me I couldnt bring him with me, I just wouldnt go. theres no way im leaving my baby with anyone at this stage!

Post # 55
2419 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I hadn’t noticed “these” posts. Kids are always touchy here at the hive. It’s almost as deep emotionally as liberal vs conservative… :-0

We put this on our website (pieced together from the hive), and it’s 110% true.

“We look forward to dancing the night away with all the special people in our lives. Due to the venue size, we have been limited to an adult-only reception with the exception of nursing infants. We thank you in advance for your understanding.”

While we wish for kids, right now, the venue size won’t allow for the 40 some odd kids we would have to invite. While many may leave kids at home, we couldn’t come up with a way to do it, and none of the kids are “relatives.” We DO however have friends with babies in the womb right now that will be born shortly before our wedding. In no way would we expect them to leave them behind. 

Friends of ours TRIED to leave the baby behind…. it’s also really hard EMOTIONALLY on parents to leave a newborn. we want our friends to be comfortable, and if that means they need to bring their new bundle of joy, that’s fine by us! 

Post # 56
2297 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2009

As far as I’m concerned, you are free to exclude nursing babies if:

  1. You are perfectly willing to have anyone with a nursing baby decline.
  2. You have no one with a nursing baby among your Wedding Party or your immediate family.

In effect, when you are inviting someone with a nursing baby and not allowing them to bring the baby, you are saying that you don’t care very much whether that person attends.  You’d better not be doing that in a situation in which such a person is someone you should care about, such as a member of your wp or immediate family.

As for some of the arguments that have been given:

  1. Bottle-feeding at all in the first three weeks can permanently impair a woman’s ability to breastfeed after that.  So a baby younger than that can be apart from its mother only for the gap between feedings.
  2. Yes, it is true that employed mothers sometimes breastfeed after the baby is three weeks old.  I did it full-time for over 6 months with each of my children.  However, it is physically impossible for many mothers.  Even for those for whom it is possible, it involves an incredible commitment.  At your ceremony/reception, it would basically involve the person taking a half hour at a time every four hours and finding a quiet room to pump.  It may well also, especially after the first few weeks, involve her taking expensive hormones to trigger the let-down reflex when the baby is not present.
  3. It is totally impractical for someone to leave a baby at home for two or three days, and continue to breastfeed.  Even for mothers who pump, the pumping does not stimulate the let-down reflex the way nursing does, so the monther must rely on some nursing each day to continue to breastfeed.
  4. The one practical way to avoid bringing a nursing baby to the ceremony or reception is to bring a babysitter from home for the trip, have that person on duty somewhere near the venue during the entire ceremony and reception, and have a messenger to call the mother out of the ceremony or reception as necessary when it is time for a feeding.  However, that is often a huge expense for the couple.  You need a separate hotel room for the nanny, airfare for the nanny, and meals for the nanny, in addition to having to pay the nanny more because she can’t see friends, etc. for that time period even after her work day is over.
  5. Even if a reception is an inappropriate place for an older child, that doesn’t mean it is an inappropriate place for a breastfeeding newborn.  A baby  is not going to run around and get in people’s way.  It is not going to be shocked by the sight of drunken people.  It can sleep anywhere, no matter the level of noise.  (My son, at 7 months, slept through my sister’s reception, notwithstanding the two loud mariachi bands she had.)

At my first wedding, we just included children in the ceremony and reception.  At my second, there were no people with children at the ceremony, so the issue did not come up.  We did have an adults-only reception back home three days after our wedding.  However, it was an evening event, all of the guests were local, and none of them had nursing babies.  If the situation had been different, we would have found a way to let at least nursing babies attend.

Post # 57
767 posts
Busy bee

I actually agree with gionetto that children should be more of a part of public life than they are in the US.  Children are human beings not exotic pets and they have as much right to public spaces as other human beings and should not be expected to act unnaturally.  So I don’t raise an eyebrow at a baby in a restaurant or a plane.

However, I feel that private parties are different. 

ETA: Not that I raise an eyebrow at babies at private parties either! I just meant that I think it’s a personal choice.  For what it’s worth we’re having children at our wedding.

Post # 58
1830 posts
Buzzing bee

Agree so much with 2d bride on her what happens if you exclude newborns.  It’s your party but actions aren’t without consequences, especially if more thoughtful actions could have be taken.  If a sibling has a newborn family is going to want to see it and the sibling is going to hard pressed to leave a newborn, if you’re adamant about no babies then I think the only way to still look gracious and not piss off family is to be accomodating to family and siblings wishes as well (like baby at ceremony only and make sure someone steps out if they cry, finding someone on sight to help watch, or whatever). 

Also really agree with gionnetto, I feel like kids being kids develops them into less bratty little beings, if they’re always exluded and mommies are exluded the kids become like the center of this weird little kid universe.

That being said, while I wanted kids at my wedding I completely understand if there’s too many to include/not appropriate venue for kids.  But I do think people are a bit hard on some of their new mommy siblings/friends.

Post # 59
361 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Yikes, I’m glad I will be bottle feeding when we have kids. Breast feeding sounds painful and really hard! Kudos to the moms that do it! (Bottle feeding for medical reasons and no I don’t want your opinion about it. It is what it is). 🙂

Post # 60
520 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2011

I agree with MightySapphire.  I don’t have kids, and honestly, I don’t like them all that much.  BUT if you have a close relative or member of the bridal party with a nursing newborn, I think you have to either let them bring the baby, or don’t expect them to come. 

As MightySapphire said, there’s a distinction b/w a nursing newborn anda nursing infant/toddler.  Women with nursing newborns cannot “just pump” and do not work 8 hours a day.

Post # 61
361 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

@troubled: The problem with our society is parents want absolute control over their kids. If a kid is running around on those wheely shoes and runs into me, if I tell them “You need to be more careful and what where you’re going” it is inevitable I will have an angry mom saying “WHAT DID YOU JUST SAY?!?! DON’T DISCIPLINE MY KID!!!!!!” The best option is to be passive aggresive, roll my eyes, and shoot the mom a dirty look.

When our neighbor’s kid decided to ride wheelies on our lawn I went out and asked him to not do that (and I like kids, so I am never rude or mean). About 10 minutes later the mom came over and screamed in my face how her child should be able to do whatever the hell he wants since he is “just a child”. I told her I had just sprayed poison (weed killer) down and was worried he would get hurt. She then told me what right did I have to spray poison with kids in the neighborhood. Umm…because it is MY LAWN and I assume kids aren’t going to just run amok in it.

Basically, whenever I have told a kid not to run into me, destroy my property, or hit me I am met with an angry parent. I gave up and keep to myself. The only kids I have a right to say anything to are my nieces, but my sister gave me permission to keep them in line when needed. 🙂

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