Post # 1
For all intents and purposes, we are having a “destination” wedding. 90% of our friends and family will be traveling in from out of state to help us get married. Because of this, we are making it a full weekend of activites (all optional) so that people can make a mini-vacation out of it if they wish. This includes bringing their kids. We don’t want to potentially exclude anyone because their kid is not invited. So we’re having a family-friendly weekend and providing sitters for the later hours of the wedding night if mom and dad want to stay out late.
The question is – what is the cut-off for all other kids? Like kids who are older and are not a “barrier” to travel? Or the handful of kids who actually live in the city where we are getting married? I don’t want the parents to show up at the wedding and question why their kid wasn’t invited. But also, I don’t want them to feel obligated to bring their kid – is that a thing? Or a kid we’ve never met before.
TL;DR: Is there anyway to invite kids without inviting ALL kids???
Post # 2
I’m confused. You want to encourage people to make it a mini vacation and have a family-friendly weekend, but you want to also say, “Oh except for any kid older than X. They’re not allowed, leave them at home.”
Or you want to just say to all local parents, “Nope, you can’t bring your kids even though the out-of-towners could and we have all these fun events for their kids.”
Or you want to say, “Sorry, we’ve never met your kid before, so they’re not invited.”
Just no. No no no.
Post # 3
All kids or no kids. Sorry but it would just make you look terrible if you played favorites in this scenario.
Post # 4
- Wedding: November 2019 - Canada
You have to invite all kids or no kids. If you have activities and things planned for the kids, I don’t understand why there’d be a hesitation to invite all the kids.
Post # 5
Do you mean adult ‘kids’?
I would invite people based on household in this situation. Basically anyone under 15/16 is going to be a barrier to travel (for some) so you’re better off just inviting all dependents rather than a cutoff for something like ages 16 – 18. People won’t expect you to invite their adult, independent offspring based on you inviting actual children.
Post # 6
I don’t really appreciate the attitude of your response but I’d like a chance to respond and hopefully explain a little more where I’m coming from.
I’m perfectly happy inviting all the kids – honestly – I just don’t want people to feel obligated. I’m not a parent so I don’t know what it is like – is it easier to bring them along or get a sitter? I know my close friends well and I know they’ll wind up getting a sitter anyway so they can have a fun night out. So inviting their children would just be a formality. Fine.
On the other hand, we’re inviting my fiance’s boss who has a 15 year old who we’ve never met. Is he a kid? Would my fiance’s boss feel obligated to bring him since he was technically invited?
Also, because of the travel involved, I was wondering if older kids would actually make it harder for them to get here. There are two that come to mind who are 16 and 17. If I invite these families, are they going to worry about how to afford another plane ticket?
Maybe this sounds bad, but I don’t care which kids come necessarily (other than my 4 flower girl nieces). I care that their parents come – my actual friends and cousins and other family. I don’t want the issue of kids being invited/not invited to be a barrier to anyone.
So I guess my real question is – to all you parents out there – if your child is invited to a wedding, do you feel obligated to bring them along since they were invited or are you okay leaving them with a sitter/at home if you are trying to have an adult night out?
Post # 7
That’s where I am stuck – they are in that 15-18 range haha! About 3 of them. I guess the consensus from everyone yelling at me is that I should invite them…
Post # 8
Would like to clarify that I am FINE inviting all kids, I just didn’t know if inviting some children described in the OP would actually make it harder for the parents to attend. Also, we aren’t having “all these fun events for kids”. We will have age-neutral events… like a BBQ, for example.
Post # 9
Extending the invite to a couple and allowing them to bring their kids if they want to isn’t putting them in the situation of, “Oh man, now we HAVE to make sure Billy, Bobby, and Sally can all go.” If they don’t want to bring their kids, or if they only want to bring their youngest or oldest or prettiest, then that’s what they’ll do. It’s a wedding, it’s not a children’s birthday party. I’m a parent and I never feel obligated to bring my baby to adult events, even if I know it wouldn’t be a problem for the host if I did. Extending the invite isn’t a barrier—it gives people options and a choice.
Oh and if you want people to turn it into a vacation, then I don’t think allowing them to only bring their kids under 15 comes off well. Just because a 15-year-old CAN stay back and take care of themselves for a weekend, doesn’t mean the family will want to just leave him or her at home while they all enjoy this “mini vacation.”
You say you have no issue inviting all the kids, so invite all the kids.
Post # 10
This is very easy: Everyone knows that if their kids are invited, it means the parents have the OPTION to bring them. Or if the kids are older, it’s between the kid and the parent. Nobody thinks that inviting their kids means the kids MUST come.
Invite everyone who would be welcome including kids regardless of age, and leave it up to the families to decide which ones come.
Post # 11
I’m not a parent yet but my sister is and she seems to get invited to a lot of weddings. Just because the invitation will allow the entire family to come, it doesn’t always mean that she brings the whole clan. Sometimes just her and my brother in law go, sometimes she brings her kids. It just depends on who the wedding is for.
Leave it up to the parents like a PP said. And don’t play favorites. All kids or none at all.
Post # 12
People will not feel obligated to bring their kids.
Post # 13
thank you – i think we are on the same page – and this was helpful. better to provide the option and let the parents decide.
Post # 15
We put “& family” on the invites to let people know their kids were welcome to come. I think that conveys the message that the invite is to the parents, but that the kids are welcome too. Of course, that means the in town kids are still invited.
I also think it’d be fine if the out of town kids are family, close friends, etc. I doubt your boss would be put out if you just included the adults on that invite.