Post # 1
Hi bees, fiancé and I were discussing whether to have children at the wedding. My side have very few, two at most, most of his family and friends have young children so there’s possibly 15 toddlers and babies lol… plus my side so 17 in total if ALL of them come. I know some are already talking about arranging baby sitters so it will likely not be 17 but maybe still in the 10s just depend on his friends, who are flying in from another city.
No invitation has been sent out yet so no idea about RSVPs from his friends, it could very well be that only the guy (his friends) come alone without the family considering the cost of a family of 4-5 travelling interstate. We don’t know yet but obviously will have to plan for all of the children attending if we’re going to invite them.
Fiancé doesn’t mind having kids and I kind of preferred no children but open to having them too but want to consider the pros and cons. Last think I want are clueless parents (even just one let alone more than one) with their young children crying or talking loudly during the ceremony, and them not leaving to tend to the child, which I have heard happen to a friend (a family relative’s baby cried throughout the ceremony).
The reception is cocktail style (with seats don’t worry), I’m not too worried about that, I think the venue is pretty relaxed about children and it won’t be too costly to have them, and we’re guessing the parent will want to put their kids to bed by 7pm, so perhaps one of them will leave early.
So I’m looking for some tips and experiences of those who had children at their ceremony and reception, how many children were there? Were they very young? Did you organise them to have their own seat at the ceremony? What about the reception esp if you have cocktail style?
What was the experience like, good and bad? Any tips and advice about having that many kids at wedding (potentially) would be helpful.
Post # 2
missyjz : we had about seven kids at our wedding, most of them got the kids meals but my parents insisted on giving the older ones the adult meals (even though other family members never do this at plated events, but they paid so whatever)
they were all very entertained by the music and the atmosphere of the wedding itself so I don’t think extra activities etc. were necessary to keep the kids busy. They were running around and such but I honestly barely noticed, they did go absolutely crazy for the photobooth.
I thought I wanted no kids at our wedding but since my parents paid I relented, though it was nice to have them there.
IMO the biggest problem we had was my 17 year old cousin’s ‘date’ trying to go and do stuff behind the venue with some of my friends my age (I’m 28).
Post # 3
We had probably around 10 children between the ages of 6 months to 12 years and a couple of teenagers. We had a buffet style dinner, so that wasn’t really an issue. Our caterers didn’t charge for kids under 8. There were no interruptions during the ceremony and the kids just sat with their parents at the reception. A lot of them ended up dancing after dinner which was cute and made for great pictures. I will say though that all the kids were family members, so they all knew each other for the most part and could keep each other entertained without planning anything special.
Post # 4
We had about 3 children under ten at our wedding and that’s because they were in the wedding. We had about four teens who were also in the wedding. For the most part we tried to have a child-free wedding. Our flower girl had some serious attitude walking down the aisle. But I think she was 8 so she still behaved just made faces the whole time.
That were fine at the wedding but one of my drunken friends ran one of them over and knocked them down at the the reception and she balled for quite some time until I held her and calmed her down.
I couldn’t imagine having tons of kids running around a bunch of drunks… We also don’t really like children though and my DHs side of the family has millions of kids. It seems obnoxious to pay so much (even the kids menu) for kids who don’t care about it but thats us.
Post # 5
The only problem I have with kids at a wedding is photographers think they are cute and just take pictures of them. My friends wedding had one baby, the photographer took about one third of her total photographs of the baby. My friend wasn’t event that close to the family. She was a bit miffed. I’m having kids at my wedding, but I’m going to instruct my photographer not to take many pics of kids because I’m just not that interested in them one or two so I can send to my friends of their kids great, but that’s it.
I think we will have about 10-15 kids of various ages. I’m not excluding kids because I want my friends there.
Post # 6
We had children at our wedding and honestly I didn’t even notice them. Now this may have been because I was too busy in the zone of getting married or that their parent said knew when behaviour was getting too much and quietly dealt with it.
I think it honestly all stems down to the parents and the children. Some parents will be fantastic at knowing when a child needs to be removed and others will literally be blind to all behaviours and just be about enjoying themselves. Equally you’ll have some children who are happy to amuse themselves with little to no disruption to those around them and others who need constant connection.
so at the end of the day it’s up to you and whether you think your friends will be able to be parents and have a good time at your wedding.
Post # 7
Keep in mind it does not have to be all or no kids. Just like with adults, there can be different categories of children. We invited children of siblings and younger first cousins from toddler to teenager and had no issues whatsoever. No kids of friends were invited. You can also limit by age, though personally I would never split a nuclear family that way.
A nice gesture for those with kids not invited is to supply or recommend a sitter.
Conversely, wedding party children are first and foremost child guests not an etiquette exception. If a flower girl has a sibling or first cousin related to you in the same way, under normal circumstances you’d include them as well.
Post # 8
We had no kids minus a few babies and it was marvellous.
I’ve been to weddings with kids screaming in the ceremony, pouring wine down guests shirts, one of my nieces even pushed her sister into the bushes and made her cry. So it wasn’t happening.
Post # 9
michelleh0686 : I can promise you we’re not all like this. I’m a wedding photographer and I dislike kids at weddings. I might grab a shot or two (usually when it’s just the kids on the dance floor) and other than that I don’t photograph the kids. I personally had a kid free wedding and it was awesome. I high-five all my couples who have kid-free weddings. (and before anyone thinks I’m a monster I certainly am fine to the kids at weddings , but weddings without them are always so much more enjoyable for everyone)
My issue with kids at weddings is not the kids, because they are just behaving according to their ages, it’s that parents DO NOT WATCH THEM. Every time these threads pop up there are always the bees who talk about how they had plenty of kids at their wedding and it wasn’t an issue. The problem is that usually the B&G are so busy with just being part of the day they don’t even know when kids are a disruption. I attend more weddings in a single year than most people do in a lifetime, so I feel like I have a pretty good yardstick to measure with. 😉
You’ve got two kinds of parents at weddings : 1) The parent with tiny children they must keep constantly moving and entertained…thus not getting to enjoy themselves at all, and 2) The parent with kids who are more self sufficient that they just let run around unsupervised and they’re constantly getting in peoples way.
Post # 10
I think declaring a No Kids Wedding to folks who aren’t used to that can cause drama. You see a lot of threads on here about people crossing boundaries. Some breast feeding moms can find that restriction confusing, much less a slap in the face. By making this declaration, you are opening yourself up to another later of wedding drama, no matter how important this is to you.
I think most adults can determine for themselves if the hassle or the childcare is worth it to them. Have a kids table for those old enough to sit by themselves and maybe hire a childcare provider when the RSVPs start rolling in.
We didn’t mention anything about kiddos, but the RSVPs that we received so far indicate that we will not have a lot of small ones.
Post # 11
Kids were invited to our wedding because my husband’s family has a ton of children and we see them all the time. A lot of parents actually chose not to bring them though! I think for a lot of my friends this was a rare date night opportunity. In total, there were six kids under ten, plus a bunch of teenagers. I think it helped that we had a really relaxed beach wedding with a buffet. I understand why people who have really formal weddings don’t want kids there, but we wanted our wedding to be a celebration with all our loved ones…and that included kids!
Post # 12
- Wedding: September 2017 - City, State
We had a no kids wedding (aside from my three much younger half siblings, ages 4-11) and it was fine. I can see it becoming an issue with those who are coming from out of town, but you’d have to work with those family/friends on a case by case basis I think. As far as my siblings and my experience, they sat with my dad, ate the family style dinner, and had a blast dancing and entertaining our friends and family.
Post # 13
starfish0116 : I’m 100% in agreement with you on parents not watching their kids, it’s the bane of my life in my current line of work. I think I’m going to do activity packs for them for the boring bits such as the wedding breakfast.
Post # 14
My husband and I chose to invite kids to our wedding. In total, five attended, ranging in age between one and eleven. We lucked out in that we’re close to all the kids we invited independantly of our relationships with their parents (We babysit a lot…). So for us, they really were guests, not just tiny, demanding plus ones… if that makes sense?
As for making the event kid friendly, we didn’t actually do anything. We just made it clear to the parents that they should feel free to come and go as needed and to bring toys, snacks, etc. to keep their kids entertained. It all worked out well and everyone felt comfortable. We did have a moment during the ceremony when our youngest guest actually broke away from his mom and ran up to his dad (one of our groomsmen) at the front of the church, but frankly it was more cute than disruptive. We all had a laugh and then the ceremony carried on. If you invite kids you have to be willing to accept a little bit of chaos! It’s totally worth it though if you want your wedding to be a family affair.
Post # 15
Ok I agree with a previous poster who said the bride and groom don’t notice kids on their wedding day. At my sister’s wedding last year, my niece who was 2.5 at the time spoke through the whole wedding. Her grandma came to the wedding to supervise and collect her after the ceremony. Her grandma didn’t take her out or tell her to be quiet. Nobody around us could concentrate. My sister the bride heard nothing.
She received the raw footage of her wedding video a few months later. The whole wedding video is full of my niece talking and squealing. My sister felt so bad for the guests!!
She then said I can’t blame you for having no kids at your wedding.