Post # 1
I have a pretty good friend, who when I got engaged, immediately asked “we’re invited, right?!” And I said of course! Anyways, we’ve decided not to have kids at our wedding, and I explained this to my friend (her and her husband have two kids, ages 5 and 2). Anyways, I was kind of surprised by her response. She seemed kind of miffed, and even vented to me about another wedding that they were invited to and her kids were not! That was weird and awkward, because then I felt I needed to defend not only this other couple who’s wedding they were invited to, but our decision as well. Anyways, after that, she never bothered to RSVP and isn’t coming to the wedding because they don’t know what to do with their kids. It’s a local wedding, and I just think “really? Is it that hard to find a sitter for a few hours??” Maybe I’m being totally selfish, and you can tell me if I am! I don’t have kids so I don’t know. But those of you who do—is it really that hard to find a babysitter these days??
Post # 3
Yes, it sometimes is. I have a great sitter now. But before I found her (last year) I literally couldn’t go out without my children. Now I am at the mercy of her social schedule. She is pretty good at committing to a date if I ask her far enough in advance. But, because of that, getting her on a Saturday night (especially in the summer when she is out of school) is tough.
Some people can’t “just get a babysitter.” It isn’t always an easy task. And, honestly, sometimes it just isnt’ worth the headache and expense.
Post # 4
I totally agree. I hate when people use the excuse of not being able to find a sitter, especially for a local wedding. In my babysitting days, I always got phone calls to babysit because the parents were going to a wedding. And I usually got those calls a few days before the wedding!
Post # 5
@MrsLulu: Ya, I guess that’s true. She just seemed really into coming to the wedding before she found out her kids couldn’t come. I almost felt as though her not bothering to RSVP and then their decision not to attend was made more out of spite than true inconvenience. Ah well.
Post # 6
@jules28: I’m sorry that this happened to you. It’s a bummer, I know.
I had a very good friend say something similar to me. We were cool with having her newborn (she was breastfeeding) at the wedding, but let her know months and months ahead of time that her elder child couldn’t come. Not only did we not have the space…at all, but it just wasn’t that kind of event (started at 8pm, open bar cocktail party with loud music). They came, complained that the elder child cried before they left, said the music was too loud for a baby (no shit, Sherlock) and left early. I wtas also told that I was unfair because she (my friend) worked a lot and the only time she got to see her kids was on the weekends, thus my wedding meant that she couldn’t spend the evening with her child.
For some reason, people don’t seem to be into the baby sitting game now. I’m not sure if it’s because no one knows their neighbours, so they don’t know anyone who would be able to do it or if it’s special snowflake syndrome. In any case, this wasn’t your fault. They are being completely ridiculous (about complaining). Unfortunately, when you invite people, they can decline for any reason…and that’s not rude. Telling you that it’s because you didn’t include their kids and they are upset about that IS rude.
Post # 7
We moved to an area where we didn’t know anybody. My mom lives the closest out of any any relatives (only haf an hour away now, yay), but for a while everyone was over an hour away. and yes, it really was difficult to find a babysitter.
We love having nights away just the two of us when we can, but sometimes it feels like you hardly get family time when you have multiple adults only events and maybe that is what she was feeling frustrated about.
Post # 8
It’s not for just a few hours. Let’s say it takes half an hour to drive there. With a typical 5 hour ceremony/cocktail hour/reception, parents are looking at 6 hours, minimum. I’m not sure what babysitters are charging now, but I charged $15/hour when I was in college. So that’s $90 for a babysitter, on top of a gift, which will range anywhere from $50 – 100. If they don’t have money to do it, that is that.
EDIT: Also, when I was a babysitter, I rarely worked Saturday nights. You’d have to pay me GOOD for that! None of my friends worked Saturday nights either. Friday night was doable, however.
Post # 9
Unfortunately sometimes it really is!
But people who can’t find a sitter can just decline invitation. It’s an invitation after all, and not a summons! Getting miffed is sort of silly, imo.
If she’s miffed because she’s thinking “how dare you invite us without the kids, don’t you realize how important children are to us, and besides do you know how hard it is to get a sitter these days?” then I say to heck with her.
Post # 10
@ArwenBride: Geez! Then why did they even come? 🙁 If they still are attached by the umbilical cord to their kids, then they shouldn’t have attended. I am sympathetic to people who have a hard time finding a sitter, needing to spend time with kids. But that’s all part of having children–it comes with the territory. To complain to you that your wedding was such an inconvenience to them is so rude.
Post # 12
Sometimes people make excuses when they have other reasons for not attending.
I honestly think most people can find a sitter if they choose to, given enough notice.
If they can’t find a paid sitter, most people could exchange childcare with a friend or a family member, then it wouldn’t cost a dime.
Post # 13
Some of my friends are annoying because they choose to take their children everywhere even to adult events where they aren’t invited. I think if they truly have no one to watch her kids but its just a preferance, but she is just entitled and thinks it ok. I since starting putting my foot down, I think the proper thing for parents to do if they can’t find child care is to turn down the invite.
Post # 14
Some people are also not comfortable leaving their kids with people. I don’t know many people where I live and I would not be comfortable leaving my daughter with anyone at this point.
When you say you’re having a no-kids wedding, you can’t get mad when people with kids decide they aren’t going because of it.
Your friend could have been less rude with her reaction though. I’m sure she’s just upset because she did really want to go, but isn’t comfortable or in the position to have someone look after her children for the evening.
Post # 15
It isn’t hard to find a person to watch your kids. It’s harder to schedule (and possibly pay) someone that you know and trust to watch your kids for 6 hours plus, and possibly overnight.
We have a two year old, and she had a great time at the last wedding we went to but my mom is usually available to watch her for nights out. If my mom couldn’t watch her for a “no kids” wedding, I’d decline the invitation. If my child isn’t welcome at your wedding, I’m not going to book some random person to watch her.
Post # 16
Finding child care can be tough. maybe you don’t have a family unit that watches your kids for free. Also, some parents feel bad if they ask for free babysitting too frequently. Parents can go the paid sitter route, but that has difficulties as well. Babysitting is not cheap because it is a difficult job. And you want to hire someone you can trust so you have to be picky. And even more limiting is babysitting on the weekends because sitters want to go out themselves. I think parents should not be penalized for opting not to attend an event where their children are not invited if they cannot find a sitterer. They are doing the mature thing.
On a side note, and not to judge or thread-jack (I’m just curious). How is it poor etiquette to refrain from inviting couples and significant plus 1’s but okay not to invite children? Isn’t parent-child a social unit? I mean, I get the safety concerns and the late night weddings, but it seems like some couples use “no children” just because they want to…which is fine, I’m just sayin