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30/01/2013 at 11:32
Caroline Hendry, the International Site Editor for Hitched, is writing a blog piece about children at weddings and would love to include your views. If you'd like to share your thoughts, please post below and she will lift some quotes. Thank you!
30/01/2013 at 11:36
I had a no children rule. Apart from my one! And she was collected after the wedding breakfast. The venue wasn't suitable for children, I felt more that parents would be stressed trying to keep them amused indoors (autumn wedding) and I wanted my friends to enjoy themselves. I was prepared to accept any declined invitations though as it was my stipulation.
30/01/2013 at 11:43
I personally dont mind children at weddings or any other do, even when I didnt have kids I was like 'the more the merrier'! We had just family at our wedding ceremony anyway (inc 1 child) but our reception had about 20 little ones! Doesnt bother me at all. Also wanted to add that I always invite the whole family and then its up to the parents themselves if they want to bring their kids or leave them at home, dont feel like thats my decision iyswim? For our reception I had some friends thrilled that their LO's had been included and others said "I know youve invited such and such but we'd prefer to get a sitter if thats ok?" Totally up to them, horses for courses as they say, and all are welcome at Estrellita's parties!
30/01/2013 at 11:58
Children at weddings is completely subjective and a decision that can really only be taken by the bride and groom - it's their day after all. As Beez said they should accept that this may mean they will get a few more "With Regrets" than they would have otherwise. I've been invited to plenty of weddings, some with my kids, some without. The ones where I'm invited with them I've always offered not to bring them for the sake of my sanity, not the B&G's!
If you want to talk about "Mobile Phones & Tablet Computers at weddings - for or against?" I'll reel you off a long list of againsts and why they're actually worse than kids at weddings!
30/01/2013 at 11:59
We had children at our wedding, it was very much a family event and the family included people's kids so they were all invited. Not many of my friends had children at that time, but they were invited too, some brought them and some had a weekend away without them.
As a guest, we haven't been to a few family weddings recently when children aren't invited - if most of your family are going, who is going to babysit the kids??? (We don't have many babysitting options). So we haven't been able to go. E.g. my husband's cousin is getting married in April and it is 4-5 hours drive away from where we live so we would probably have to go for two nights; all my husband's family (adults) will be there so none of them could babysit and my parents are too elderly to look after 3 small children for 2 nights and 2 days so that means we can't go, or my husband could go on his own (he's not though). It's a shame because it would be nice to see all the family and for them to meet our kids. Never mind.
We are going to a friend's wedding soon without the kids but it's just the evening do and so my parents are going to come over and stay at our house, the kids will be in bed and so we can go.
30/01/2013 at 12:10
It's each to their own. We had children invited at our wedding, there was no reason not to - although some guests did decided to have a child free weekend instead.
We have been invited to weddings with children and some without - the ones without we have been to less of, as getting childcare is so hard. We have been to one wedding without our children and we paid for childcare.
30/01/2013 at 12:17
I do think its quite venue dependent as well. We got married abroad so I doubt anyone with children would have made it if we'd have had a no children rule. I wouldn't personally have had no children at my wedding even if it had been a more traditional affair here but I think that's largely because of the type of wedding I'd have had and it would have been a big family thing. I wouldn't be upset or offended if I received a wedding invitation that didnt include my children. If it was doable then it'd probably be quite nice to have a night off! I would feel a bit more weird about it if it was a close member of the family or something but that's because of the dynamics of it and them knowing how family orientated we are. I think as the others said people have to accept that there are likely going to be some declines though.
30/01/2013 at 12:19
We had children at our wedding, although we had to restrict the number due to the number of people we wanted to invite and the fact I have such a big family - we only invited cousins that were still living at home as so many of my older cousins have families of their own which would have cost a fortune, and also there wouldn't have been enough room in any of the venues we liked or could afford - it seemed the fairest way to do it. This also meant friend's children were not invited, apart from my best friend, who was also my chief bridesmaid, and one of her daughters is also my god-daughter so we wanted her two girls there.
Out of all those invited, there was only a couple of the evening guests who asked about bringing children, and only one of them declined because they weren't invited.
Since having C we've only been to a couple of weddings of friends, one he was invited to, and the other not - I'm not particularly bothered as long as we can get childcare which isn't usually a problem - it's nice to have him there with us, but also nice to go along and enjoy a wedding just as a couple.
30/01/2013 at 12:22
We had children at our wedding. I personally think they make for a good wedding. They are generally the ones to get the party started...
However, I've been invited to many weddings since having M where they have said "no children" and frankly, it's lovely to have a good excuse for a day off!
The reasons for no children have varied too. Some just didn't want them there, unsuitable venue or didn't want the noise of them. Others would have loved to invited all the children but have so many friends and family with them that it would have cost a fortune to have all the children there too.
30/01/2013 at 12:43
Our venue had a staircase down to the toilets that was completely unsuitable for the 20+ under 6's we would have had to invite if we'd included children. We got married on a Friday so sent out a 'save the date' about 10 months in advance letting people know it was a child free wedding and on a Friday. This gave everyone time to book a babysitter and time off work. We had one table of friends who all left their children at home and they all said what an amazing time they'd had: they normally met up as a group with the kids but this was the first time in years they'd had an adult only meet up and they LOVED it. I guess we were lucky in that we had no children on the family and only one of our friends children was under 12 months.
30/01/2013 at 12:54
I think children make a wedding. However, that said, since having kids our most stressful days have been at weddings we've all gone to. Nightmare for us but the brides wanted them there. I wish we'd left them at home!!
30/01/2013 at 14:47
When we got married it was a child free wedding but that was mostly because there was only one couple we were close to who had a child and they were glad of a night off (or so they said)! Looking back, I still would have chosen a child free wedding even if I did have friends with children.
I totally understand why people don't want children at their wedding - children misbehave, run around, don't understand about being quiet etc! But it has meant over the last few years I have turned down a lot of invitations. I now have 4 children and quite frankly no-one wants that many children at their wedding from one family but also only my mum is really willing to look after all 4 (aged 5,3 and 11 month twins).
I have been unable to leave my babies when they were tiny due to that fact I breastfed them, 2 friends were happy for me to bring the tiny breastfed baby but not the older toddler (which was fine because he got to have fun with Grandma instead!), others were not.
However there hasn't been a single invitation where I have been disappointed that I haven't been able to attend due to my children. My H has been to weddings by himself or I have joined him at the evening reception if local.
30/01/2013 at 15:03
i think it becomes a problem when exceptions are made. ie No children, but immediate family/bridemaids, people who have to travel distances, older children (what age to start to consider them old enough?), babies in arms but not toddlers etc etc
we had children at our wedding because it was not just our wedding but a big family occasion. we had family travel from Ireland and my husband has lots of cousins. it was a chance for all our family to celebrate together.
We've never been asked to a child free wedding but if we were we would probably have to decline. We don't have child care for our little boy and it wouldn't be treat to have an evening away from him- just a logisical nightmare.
30/01/2013 at 15:55
We just had family children at our wedding, plus a newborn (2 weeks old!) and an 8 week old baby who had come with his Mum from Canada. We worked out that between our guests there were 35 children, so to invite them all would have meant 1. A lot more money spending 2. A venue packed to the rafters which I really didn't want 3. A noisy kids party, not a wedding.
It is completely subjective / each to their own etc. and I understand that childcare can be an inconvenience to arrange, but I really dislike it when guests make a big song and dance out of it - I had one 'friend' ask if she could pay for her own children, tell me they were so disappointed not to see me get married (I hardly know them!) and basically behave in a very manipulative way for months. In the end I told her to please decline and save herself the trouble - we had bigger fish to fry! But they did come, sorted a babysitter fine and said they had a lovely time, it just really bugged me that she was trying to change what we had already planned, and thought out - and explained to everyone. Come or don't come, that is totally a guests perogitive, but I really dislike people trying to influence the Bride and Groom and make changes to their wedding, I think it's extremely rude.
I also don't understand it when people say "Kids make a wedding." Er, do they? Isn't it about celebrating two people getting married? What's it got to do with other people's children?!
30/01/2013 at 20:35
I usually think a wedding is for all the family, though would love to go to one without mine!
30/01/2013 at 20:52
Depends what the style of the wedding is - if it is a big ol' family knees up, then it's great to take the kids, if it's a smart stately home with lots of champagne type wedding, I'd rather (and do) leave them at home, and am secretly glad when the invite says no children! I dont' see why you need to be for or against, every wedding is different and people can invite who they like. It doesn't bother me one bit when asked to leave the kids at home. They'd probably be bored at most of them anyway.
30/01/2013 at 21:28
I requested no children at my wedding (with the exception of my nephew). Only a few friends had children at that point and I wanted them to enjoy the day without running around after their little ones.I'd also been to weddings where the kids were a nightmare during the ceremony and the parents did nothing to silence them. I have taken my eldest to a local wedding, but her grandparents picked her up after the meal. We'll be attending our 1st wedding with 2 in May, but I'll leave the church if they play up. As all that side of the family will be going, I'd have no childcare so no choice but to take them.
In my opinion, children are great at the reception, but an utter pain to keep quite during the ceremony! Each to their own, but it also depends on the type of wedding I think.
30/01/2013 at 22:29
Thanks everyone for your views, great input! Caroline's blog will go live next week & we'll post a link in here.
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