Invite/website wording for adult only reception

posted 2 months ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
Member
1434 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2016

My friends invites literally say “In order to allow our guests a day of relaxation, we have chosen for our wedding day to be adults only” 

You could say “Make it a date night, adults only” super simple 

Or if you wanted to offer a little more you could say “we would love to celebrate with your whole family but at this time there are limitations and we aren’t able to accommodate children”

 

Post # 4
Member
2242 posts
Buzzing bee

As a parent to two small children I think it’s annoying for the couple to act like they are doing me a favor somehow by deciding for me not to bring my kids with statements like -“date night!” Or “relax”.  I would just address invites only to adults and include a note on your website.  Adult only wedding and reception. I totally think it’s the couple’s choice and don’t get annoyed with their choice but do get annoyed by the concept they are doing me some favor.  

Post # 6
Member
55 posts
Worker bee

probably not what you are looking for but this is the note we included in the invites. We’ve always wanted an adult-only reception and really just didn’t feel the need to say more. Surprisingly all but one family with kids RSVP’d (declined for a different reason)

 

Post # 7
Member
192 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2020

Our pre-pandemic wedding was adult-only. We didn’t note it anywhere and offered no explanation. I never understand why hosts feel obligated to do so. We didn’t have a single guest ask for clarification or show up with uninvited children — they simply had the common sense and courtesy to rsvp for only those named on the invitation. 

If you feel strongly you need to explain, I wouldn’t do it on the invitation. I’d think those details would be more appropriate for the website. 

Enjoy the planning process!

Post # 8
Member
792 posts
Busy bee

It is usually considered tacky to mention it, but COVID has thrown everything upside down. 

How many people will be at the reception?  14 is small enough that I would simply call every one of them up and mention it verbally, and make it clear it has to do with the inability of children to be vaccinated by the time of your wedding and the resultant risk it entails.  I find that giving an explanation gets rid of the opportunity for arguments or misunderstandings.  Having said that, I probably would give 12 year olds and up the OK, because they can be vaccinated, and even if it was normal (non-COVID) times, that age is old enough to eliminate the problems usually seen with children at weddings.  They are normally well behaved.

If it is instead a guest list size issue, I would definitely call everyone up (since the guest list will be very small to begin with) and explain that you just don’t have room for their kids or anyone else’s kids, otherwise the venue will be more crowded than is COVID-safe.

Post # 9
Member
14135 posts
Honey Beekeeper

A “keep out, this means your children”  message is hardly gracious. The correct etiquette answer is you don’t.  Invitations are inclusive. They are addressed by name to those who are invited. Guests are presumed to be intelligent enough to read and polite enough not to reply for uninvited guests. 

A better approach is to contact the likely offenders and ask if they are interested in a sitter or consider offering one on site.  In all the wedding invitations I’ve ever received, there may have been one that included the “adults only” language. IMO it’s a turn off. 

If your guests are the overstepping or clueless type, you can always correct any misunderstandings at the time of the RSVP. 

Post # 11
Member
5092 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

View original reply
@sociallydistancedbride:  with an invite it is how and whom it is addressed  to that tells you who is invited. If the names aren’t on it then they aren’t invited. No need to add ‘no kids’ just put the parents name only and they should get the gist. 

Post # 12
Member
792 posts
Busy bee

View original reply
@sociallydistancedbride:  I think in that case, you simply tell the truth.  Nothing wrong with saying exactly what you just said to us.  The gracious way is to explain that there are vulnerable people attending and there is no way to have children there without putting those people at risk.

Post # 13
Member
192 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2020

View original reply
@sociallydistancedbride:  

Then maybe go as far to say “invited vaccinated adults only” for those who would take it upon themselves to bring a plus-one or vaccinated child. I still think the info is more appropriate for the website rather than invitation but, since you feel so strongly your guests need direction, this is the most clear wording I’ve come up with that leaves no room for interpretation.

Post # 14
Member
2596 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

I would definitely include this information somewhere. To say that someone is “smart enough” to know that their kids aren’t invited is just a classist insult and displays contempt for people who, perhaps, haven’t been to any or many send-an-invite events. Other than a few weddings, I haven’t been “formally” invited to anything in the last 20 years. I have a masters degree and make a nice salary, and spent many years in a management role at work. People in my social circle just don’t tend to go to the effort of formal invites. Would I necessarily realize that my child isn’t invited??? I don’t know. Clear, kind, and direct messaging is probably the best course of action.

Post # 15
Member
14135 posts
Honey Beekeeper

View original reply
@jannigirl:   Have you ever gotten a birthday invitation when you were a child? Did you somehow manage to know who was invited? It isn’t remotely classist and it isn’t only in reference to formal events. It’s just plain common sense. 

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