(Closed) What to do… kids at ceremony not reception?

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
46670 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Just do a search here on WeddingBee and you will see that this is a common problem.

Just use the broken record approach.

Future Mother-In-Law: but Aunt Lucy and Uncle Phil are driving all the way from____

You:”We have decided not to have children at the wedding, other than the 4 in the wedding party”

Future Mother-In-Law: they are only little and can share their parent’s plate

You: “We have decided not to have children at the wedding, other than the 4 in the wedding party”

Future Mother-In-Law: FI’s cousin had children at her wedding

You: “We have decided not to have children at the wedding, other than the 4 in the wedding party”

Future Mother-In-Law:weddings are family occasions

You:”We have decided not to have children at the wedding, other than the 4 in the wedding party”

etc etc etc

Post # 4
10287 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

Some people need to literally have the “no kids” concept beaten into them. They’ll come up with dozens of scenarios to try to persuade you to change your mind but ultimately, it’s your decision. I would reiterate that you cannot invite these people’s children without including the other 30 that your excluding and thats just not possible. What your Mother-In-Law wants doesn’t matter. It’s your wedding and you don’t have to make any concessions. Stand your ground and like Julies said, keep repeating that it’s an adults only wedding with the exception of the kids in the Bridal Party. Eventually your Mother-In-Law will get the hint.

Post # 5
3267 posts
Sugar bee

Etiquette is on your side for this one.  You don’t have to invite kids if you don’t want to.  You can also tell your well meaning Future Mother-In-Law that it is impolite to invite people to one portion of the event and not the reception.

The recepetion is to thank guests for coming to the ceremony.  Just because they are kids, doesn’t mean they are undeserving of thanks.  Also, if granny can pick up the kids after the ceremony, then she can watch them for an additional 30 mins before.

Stick to your guns.  The broken record method works best as suggested by Julie.  Also, I find providing a generic response as oppsed to details as to why you can’t accomodate them works best.  If you say you can’t afford it, they will pay, you say your venue can’t accomodate them, they will sit on the mother’s lap, you say they will make noise, your Future Mother-In-Law will make sure she takes them out if the parents don’t jump fast enough. 

Repeat after me. “I’m sorry but that won’t be possible”

Post # 7
501 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

I agree with everyone else. The guests and Mother-In-Law should respect your wishes. It’s one day for a few hours, they should be able to handle it!

Post # 9
6586 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

We too are getting married at one location with the reception at a marina, in an open air pavilion on the docks. If they’re that concerned about not being able to bring their kids they don’t have to come. I’ve adapted a no bullshit policy when it comes to kids at my wedding. We’re not having kids, period. I don’t make excuses for it….it boils down to a) not wanting kids there, b) not wanting the extra cost, and c) not having the appropriate venue for kids. Even if we had an unlimited budget and different venue I still wouldn’t want kids.

As a wedding photographer, I see it all. I always see people trying to argue the other side saying that parents should be watching their kids. I’m here to say they don’t! For every 1 parent that watches their kid, there are 10 more who could care less. Those same parents who try and go to bat for bringing their kids are the first ones to hit the bar while little Susie runs circles on the dance floor. 

Just stand your ground with Mother-In-Law. Let her know that it’s nothing personal against those 4 kids, but that you can’t bend the rules for them and not for others. I’m very blessed that I have a Mother-In-Law who is awesome. She doesn’t meddle, and was totally okay with our no kids. She’s even taken it upon herself to sort of spread the word with her family. Then again, that could have something to do with the fact that our guest list is out of control because they are the ones with the over the top large family. πŸ™‚

Post # 10
3771 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 1999

@dfontaine07:  That was pretty low of her to bring it up in front of everybody. You and your Fiance made this decision together, stick to your guns. Maybe if your Fiance talks to her and asks her not to mention it again, she will drop it.

@starfish0116:  Your response was so increadibly dramatic in regards to how parents behave it made me laugh.

Post # 11
6586 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

@ieatunicorns:  I wish I was being dramatic. Okay, so maybe the ratio isn’t 1:10, more like 1:5. πŸ˜‰ Really though, I see it at pretty much every.single.wedding. The kids in the 5-8/9 age range are typically always running around while mom and dad are busy chatting with friends, dancing, or enjoying themselves. It’s not always aweful behavior by the kids, but at the end of the day, they’re kids. They aren’t always consious of the fact they’re running through the crowd, knocking into people, and weaving through the dance floor. They’re not being malious, they’re being kids….but it doesn’t change the fact that it’s not appropraite behaveior for a wedding. I’ve been tripped on many more than one occasion by kids running into me while I’m photographing the first dance between the couple on the dance floor. I’m not saying all kids are bad, or that their parents are bad. There are definitely those who watch their kids. Even parents who normally watch their kids seem to let loose at weddings.

I guess I’m just extra sensitive, because I get so tired of hearing guests arguing over the kid issue. I feel so bad for my brides when they have to deal with issues like this. There is enough stress in planning a wedding than having to deal with family and friends who are upset/offended that their kids can’t come. Our invites are going out soon, and while it will make me sad if some of our family/friends with kids can’t come, I just won’t budge on it. There is no way to make exceptions without pissing off a lot of people. 

Post # 12
4192 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

Hey- our weddings are a day apart, and just a few miles up the Bay! πŸ™‚ Our venue is right on the Baltimore Inner Harbor (museum of industry), and also NOT kid-friendly-would be really easy for a little one who’s unsupervised to end up in the water. Plus, we had to get liability insurance for the museum, and an unsupervised kid could get hurt inside the museum, as well. (and I do NOT want our wedding to be remembered as “the one where the kid fell in the harbor”)

Both our ceremony and reception are adults only, and like you, I’ve offered to find babysitters for out of town Moms who need to travel with their children. If people RSVP with regrets because it’s adults only, that’s a shame, but that’s just how it’s going to be.

Also- it’s an evening wedding. Yesterday my 5-year old nephew, who’s not invited (and oh boy, was THAT drama) had his melt-down at 6pm, right when our ceremony would start. Sorry, but my vows are too important to be disrupted by screaming children- the ten kids we could invite would all be five and under. Bedtime for the kids would be right around when dinner is served, so that’s another reason it doesn’t make sense to invite kids. Julies1949’s broken record needs to go on your playlist. πŸ™‚

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