Post # 1
FH and I addressed all of our save the dates to exactly who is invited to our wedding. We are having a no kids wedding and are only giving plus ones to those who live together, are engaged, or married. So, on the save the dates for those with families/kids, I simply wrote “Joe and Jane Smith.” We then have the link to our website on the save the date and the website has an “FAQ” section which asks “What about kids and dates?” We then say “We love kiddos, but because of space restrictions, both events (welcome party and ceremony + reception) are adults only! If your invite is addressed to just you, we would love for just you to attend!”
While we are having a domestic destination wedding, this was a decision that we had to make for a variety of reasons. I have a family friend who I spoke to last night. She has 3 kids and I could not tell if she knew that the events were no kids or not. It seems like the “no kids” thing varies so drastically in social circles. FH and I have almsot entirely been to only “adults only” weddings, but we also know people who think “adults only” weddings are incredibly rude… Also, this friend comes from a family of 5 total siblings. I am extremely close with the 2 oldest (her and her sister) and my parents are close with her parents. So we are inviting the 2 oldest siblings and their husbands plus the parents. We are not inviting the other 3 siblings or the oldests’ children. (Note all of the siblings are grown adults lol). When we sent save the dates we simply sent 3 to each different household and addressed them to the couples, e.g., “Joe and Jane Smith,” “Jack and Rita Clark,” “Pat and Sally Lee.” They might be expecting that the entire family plus kids are invited but also no one came out and asked (we’ve had other family friends ask my parents if siblings are invited, which has made it easier to clarify). But I don’t want to awkwardly go out of my way to specify that someone is not invited if everyone knew that they weren’t invited in the first place. Do people usually know this sort of thing? I know it is a toss up of if people look at the website or not…
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Post # 2
You’ve answered your own questions really: different people have different experiences which will influence how they interpret the addresses on the STD’s and invites; some don’t know the addressing format has significance at all; and some will read the website while others won’t. As the hostess, you need to be prepared to explain stuff to folks, kindly and graciously, and to not take it personally when someone draws a different conclusion from the envelope than you’d intended. Does this mean you might have some uncomfortable conversations about other people’s kids not being invited? Yup, it sure does. But that’s part of what you sign on for when you choose a no-kids wedding.
” If your invite is addressed to just you, we would love for just you to attend!” “
By The Way this line on your website is a bit snarky and could be worded much better.
Post # 3
thanks! Do you have any advice for that wording? We copied this from multiple other wedding websites within our friend group…
Post # 4
Following because I am curious as well. I am leading people to my website FAQ as well and hoping they will read it. We are only allowing kids who are part of the family attend. If we allowed everyone to bring their kids, we would have 60+ kids in attendance and that is just not doable.
Here’s what I have on my website about kids: We wish we could include all children. Due to necessity rather than choice, it is children of immediate family only, many of whom are traveling from out of town. We hope you understand and enjoy your night off!
And about plus ones: If your invitation says “and Guest,” then yes, if not, we would prefer if it was just you.
Post # 5
Since you have a FAQ section, I would just put under the question about plus ones etc “Due to venue restrictions, we only have space for those named on our invitations. We regret we are unable to invite family members/plus ones” or something similar.
Post # 6
Check out Jamie Wolfer on youtube. She has an entire video on this topic. It is entitled “NO KIDS ALLOWED: How to Communicate your Adults Only Event “.
Post # 7
On our invites we put 1 or 2 seats have been saved in your honor. I figured this would make people see it was only them or just the couple, no kids. We also had on our website Adult Only.
Post # 8
I think you were fine, until you said it was a “domestic destination wedding”. I don’t think it’s fair to not offer a +1 when people are travelling for your event. I understand the “no kids” option, but you have to respect that people may not want to travel to a destination without their children (it doesn’t sound like a matter of getting a babysitter for a few hours)
Post # 9
We are trying to be mindful about the +1s and traveling. Knowing our group, I actually don’t think the +1 thing will offend anyone. What I was worried about was family friends (for example, the case that I gave in my main post, where I am close with 1-2 siblings and my parents are close with the parents, but we are not inviting other siblings within the family. Some siblings have invited us to their weddings because they have had 300 person weddings whereas we are having ~150 person wedding). The people who are not getting +1s are, for example, FH’s college rugby teammates who are single who will likely all travel together and stayin an airbnb together, etc. I don’t see any of our “young” friends taking offense (and they’re the only ones who truthfully are not getting +1s) We don’t want the guys bringing random dates.
I understand that the kid restriction will be difficult for some. We have thrown around the idea of having a babysiter for Friday and Saturday, but have gotten feedback that people feel uncomfortable having a stranger watch their kids. My FH’s cousins are all brining their kids and just having the oldest kids watch the younger kids at the hotel. None of FH’s family members were offended by this, as this is what (again) is pretty standard within his social/family group. We won’t be upset if people cannot make it because they either don’t feel comfortable having someone babysit at the destination or can’t find a local babysitter to leave the kids home with.
Post # 10
Honestly, ESPECIALLY with a destination wedding, I think you need something specific right on the invitations. As much time and energy as we pour into wedding websites (I was so guilty of this), like, 99% of people don’t bother looking at them. In real life, childfree weddings are not the default, especially when travel is involved. Same with not offering a plus one. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with any of what you’re doing, but by not making it explicit on the invitation itself (in my extended, loving Midwestern family, Joe and Jane Smith would absolutely think their two toddlers were invited despite them not being named on the invite, and it’s not because they’re entitled, it’s because they didn’t read that closely and it’s not the norm), you’re setting yourself up for stress and confusion.
Post # 11
Maybe it’s just me, but I think it’s a little strange to only invite partners who are “married, engaged or living together”…how are you going to enforce that? Demand to see an engagement ring or proof of residence?
Post # 12
Sorry but destination wedding albeit domestic and no plus 1 unless you are living together at a minimum, that’s tough on a lot of people. Expect some declines from that particular cohort of your guests. As for the no kids, I don’t think people pick up on that too well, I suggest your immediate families help disseminate that info through their friend groups and family members.
Post # 13
How large is your wedding? If it’s managable I highly recommend just talking to everyone who has kids and being explicit. That’s what we did, even before we sent out save the dates. Luckily everyone was thrilled (they were all desperate for date nights lol), and even the one person I was nervous about was so happy to hear it. We gave them a full year. Ours was not destination but was a destination for some. As in they don’t all live in our city. So there were a few couples where one partner had to stay with the kids, but it was something we understood might be a possibility. Ultimately it worked so well, everyone was lovely and it seemed to me everyone had a great time.
So yeah, I’d just talk to them. They are your friends and family after all, you are close enough to them to want them on your special day, surely having a conversation would do the trick!
Post # 14
Let me put this differently. I am confident that we won’t offend anyone who wants to bring a date/partner. We really are pretty much giving all of our guests dates except for some of FH’s friends because they are notorious bachelors. They are all very close friends with one another and usually stay together at weddings, party together for the weekend, etc. We are not worried about 1) offending them (not giving these guys +1s is pretty standard within the friend group) or 2) them having a lesser experience because they can’t bring a random date.
I rechecked my guest list and essentially everyone in a relationship HAS a +1 (some of whom are not living together… although 90% of our guests are engaged/married). We are very close with all of the guests who are NOT in a relationship, aka not getting a +1, which is a total of like 10-12 guests, so if something changes, we have buffer room to adjust. These are all 30 year old guys that honestly don’t care.
What my question WAS ABOUT was more so dealing with siblings of family friends that are not invited. For example, my family is very close with a family. We used to do holiday’s together etc. Overtime, I mainted friendships with the sibling that was my age, and my parents maintained friendships with the parents. The siblings that we haven’t kept in touch with as closely are not invited but the families might expect them to be because they are used to larger 300 person+ weddings
Post # 15
I wouldn’t stress about the date thing. Our friends are similar, and even when we offered them a plus one many of them turned it down (even ones in newish casual relationships).
As for the invites – I would directly specify ‘No Kids’ in your situation. If your circle are used to kids being invited, they may assume they are without even thinking about it. Or they’ll forget who the invite was addressed to nearer to the date.