(Closed) children reception dilema

posted 11 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
343 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

Well your first option is to invite the children you’d like to be there, and not invite the children you don’t want there.  This could potentially offend the parents of the un-invited children, assuming they notice.  If you care about offending them, this won’t be a good option for you (but if you don’t care… )

I think the next option is to only have your kids there.  From a guest point of view, I think it’s totally understandabe & acceptable that a couple would have their own children at an otherwise adults-only reception.  (If I were in your position this is the option I would go for.)  But you mentioned that you don’t want your kids to be the only ones there, and I see how that would less fun for them.

So your other option is invite all the kids.  Given the problems with this that you’ve raised, I have two ideas.  First – perhaps you could have a “kids menu” with less-expensive, child-friendly food.  That way you could bring a WHOLE LOT of the kiddie food, and it wouldn’t hurt your budget as much.  As for the wildness of the kids… well… maybe just have some relatives spread the word that kids should be on their best behavior?  It helps if they have some special activities or areas where they can be, so you could try to set that up.  And maybe you could have all the kids leave early (when your kids leave) and set up some kind of alternative arrangement with a sitter.

That’s my two cents, good luck!!

Post # 4
19 posts
  • Wedding: December 2010

I have a LARGE extended family, which is full of baby cousins, and cousins with babies. My cousin married his wife a few years ago, and she insisted on having a “kid free” wedding, which then prevented my aunt and uncle from being able to attend, as they have 3 kids, one who is autistc. It was impossible for them to find a sitter, and because they were unable to go, my parents would not go, nor did other family members with kids.

Now my cousin and his wife  paper and crhave two kids of their own, and my OTHER cousin just married her husband in November. Because kids were not invted to the first wedding, my now marrying cousin did not invite their children to the wedding, leaving the first couple to marry upset. The whole thing has cause a bit of drama when it comes to weddings.

Now it is my turn, and I have decided that EVERYONE can bring their kids, and because the reception hall will have a few extra tables set up that I wont be using for seating, I have purchased some crayons and paper coloring books, as well as a few kid friendly snacks, and have asked my friends mid-teen daughter to invite a friend to the wedding and their job is to sit with the kids and keep them busy and entertained. To pay them for their help I have purchased a manicure coupon and a movie gift card for each of the girls to enjoy a girls night.

I just thought I would share what I did for a solution. I hope it helps a little.

Post # 5
47423 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I’m always amazed when otherwise reasonable adults think that a wedding receeption is an appropriate place for children.

On what other occasion during the year would parents think it is appropriate to have their children get into their party clothes at one or so in the afternoon, drive a couple of hours to the next town, sit quietly for about an hour and a half, then wait an hour or two to sit down for a formal dinner followed by dancing? And what miracle children would remain well-behaved during that period of time?

Obviously, if the reception is a casual picnic, barbeque, garden party etc- that’s a whole different kettle of fish.

A formal dinner and dance is not a place for children nor, would most children have a good time.

People who live locally can get a sitter. Those who come in from out of town and bring their children, may need help organzing care for their children while they are at the ceremony and reception.

Post # 6
837 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Only have your children there.  In the invites on the reply card write, “2 seats have been reserved for Mrs. & Mrs. Smith” don’t include the family.

If names get filled in call and politely say that due to venue constraints and limited space they cannot accommodate extra guests.  Are they going to be mad? Probably. But if you only have your children there, it won’t be like you singled them out.

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