Children at weddings

I hope that somebody can help me with a decision that I am having to make.

Do you think its acceptable to invite just the children of immediate family (my 2 nephews) and my best friend's two daughters who are flower girls? I've got to my budget now and my venue charges £50 per head.

I was considering having a blanket ban on children due to that our budget is going to be pretty maxed!


  • we are doing exactly the same, i think it is fine! kids are normally bored and dont appreciate it anyway! plus the parents get a day off!! image
  • Yes, the cost of other children soon adds up. Child's meals are quite expensive and probably won;t get eaten by some fussy eaters, then you have to think of entertaining them.

    I have no choice as I will have a 16 month old son in tow, but we're only inviting the best man's son (he'll be almost 2) and a cousin's son (who will be 2). Those are the only little ones invited, everyone else's (older) children can stay at home or with Grandparents. Besides, as some of our guests have 3+ kids, the cost would just be ridiculous.
  • I think if your budget is really at the max then I am sure people will understand, although I think you need to be aware that people with children may not go if their children don't. We are having children at our wedding and it has cost us in childrens meals, drinks and entertainment etc. Good luck with your day x
  • MezCMezC Posts: 563
    I'm not sure when it became a bride's job to entertain kids at weddings... But anyway, I think it's very personal and totally up to you! I am inviting close friend's and close family members' kids - but not distant family members'.
  • This was a sore point for us. Our son will be 8 when we get married next year and my nephew will be 18 months old. These are the only 2 children who will be attending our wedding. Our friends and cousins have children but most of them said they would rather have a break from them for the day so have found babysitters. My moh said she didnt want her 3 children going as she didnt want them to spoil our day by getting bored. I just went with what the majority of them said and have requested only close family children allowed.
  • its all personal choice, i'm having quite alot of children at mine but i'm only having a church and then an evening buffet, think if there was a sit down meal i would probably have less.
  • The only kids we're inviting are nieces and nephews
  • MossumMossum Posts: 650
    Completely acceptable. We have my best friend's Daughter (my MOH) as flowergirl and our Nephew as page boy, then my h2b's 2 step siblings.

    We've not big fans of other people's children and it costs too much! Plus, most of our friends said they wouldn't want to bring them anyway as it's a nice break.

    We did make a concession for one of h2bs close friends who will have a very tiny newborn baby because they probably wouldn't come otherwise and a tiny baby doesn't cost anything.
  • Thank you. Although it is expensive and I am already on bread and butter, I am concered by the suroudnings. Its an old house with a massive lake and therefore not very child friendly.Plus my dance floor is likely to be full of very drunk rugby boys.

    I spoke to a friend of mine who has children and is very important to me and she said that they would add to the wedding. Her mum remarried recently and her 2 year old did the vows with them. Fine if its you grandchild but not your fiends child!!! She said that she wouldnt be able to come if the children were not invited as she doesnt trust anyone to look after them and her mother is my godmother so she ill also be coming. So thats hy I can stretch (having to think of a way to afford it at the moment) to having them as flowergirls. The other two are my nephews and currently little you think its acceptable to ask them to sit at the back if they kick off so they can make an exit?

    I am 50% deaf so very important I can hear my vows xx
  • What do you truly want to do? Its your day.. and you are paying!!

    We are having close family children only. Most friends have said they wouldn't want to bring their children anyhow. And i already know some of the close family aren't bringing their children. Anyone we've said no to children to have sighed with relief!!! xx
  • i think its totally ok to ask them to be at the back and slip out if the children get noisey
  • singo44singo44 Posts: 3,420
    i have a 2 year old daughter myself and we have decided to only invite family children & god children - 7 in total. were having 50 in the day and our venue is smallish...if we invited our friends kids we would have 23 extra!!!

    i think some parents are glad of a break, i personally think its a long day and wouldnt take my daughter to a wedding unless it was for family. people have to understand its your day.

    so far no one that i know of has objected (to my face lol) as ive given them plenty of warning!! x
  • 4June114June11 Posts: 233
    we are only having our brothers and sisters kids.
  • DuddersDudders Posts: 1,659
    I'm a little surprised that it seems to be full price for children - most venues charge less.

    That said, it is YOUR day - don't forget this!! Each and every wedding is a personal event and you shouldn't be pushed to have children if you don't want to. It doesn't sound like you're keen so don't!!

    Personally I'm having kids - our nieces and nephews will be flower girls and page boys. Ours are easily amused though and I certainly know some I wouldn't invite for fear they would ruin the day. Don't feel guilty for having what you want image
  • vinchaudvinchaud Posts: 220
    We are having three children of our own when we get married, six, four and 10 months old when we get married. They will be pageboys.

    Apart from that we only invite the children of the bridal party as they are all similiar ages, know each other and get along fine. I am refusing to invite teenagers (about five of them) as they would cost full price and all dont know how to behave, and none of the parents have objected to that.

    We have quite a few evening guests and with them no children are invited either. But that is a no brainer really if you go out for a 7.30pm event you dont take your kids.

    Its your day and people have to respect your wishes. Just dont be too blunt along the lines of I dont want YOUR kids there, if you say it is down to budget/numbers you can have at the venue every sensible sdult will understand that.
  • this can be a sore point for a lot of people!

    the only child at my wedding will be my 9 yr old god-daughter. She's a flower girl and as her entire family will be there, she will be easily entertained and isn't a demanding child anyway being the only person under 21 in our family, she's used to being with adults all day.

    Im not inviting my friends children as i dont want my friends to have to spend all day looking after them and have to leave early. i also dont like kids being there when everybody is enjoying a drink and getting a bit tipsy!

    but it is personal choice i suppose, just do what makes you happiest as it is your day! good luck xx
  • KLC27KLC27 Posts: 580
    Im having my son, who will be 2 and my niece and nephews, but I have told cousins they cant bring there children....which has caused alot of upset in the family but me personally im not that bothered if they dont like it tough, im not ruining our vows and speeches by having a lot of kids (that I dont know) shouting and running about, especially as some on them are little monsters and the parents have no control!!
  • Sterotype of children at weddings: the boys get bored and after running around a lot they skid across the dance floor on their trouser knees. The girls get even more bored and stare at the cake all day and hate the food. Both spend half the day asking Mum and Dad what that joke in the Best Man's speech meant and at 10pm they become tired and extremely irritable. The babies always cry during the service. The teenagers struggle not being the centre of the universe for all of 6 hours, get bored and sneak out the back for cigarettes and shandy. The parents may be irresponsible creators of future dregs on society, believe the world owes them a favour as well as benefits, really don't like you and want to use you banning children as an excuse for a leggings-at dawn chav war.

    Now it may be that the kids involved are quiet, able to politely listen, they're not picky about food and they're general all-round good eggs with good parents. The parents may secretly want you to ban children so they don't have to make the decision for themselves.

    If in any doubt where your family and friend's kids are, just hold your wedding in licensed premises where kids are banned! Decision made for you!
  • MrsBxMrsBx Posts: 980

    We got married in June last year.

    We would have loved to have been able to invite all children however unfortunately we just were unable to because we could not have fitted anymore into the venue!

    We invited family children as we had family travelling from Scotland to the midlands for the weekend. I also invited mothers that were breastfeeding to bring their little ones as it is difficult and I felt unfair asking them to leave a tiny baby. We did invite all children to the evening do though including parents who left them behind for the day.

    I think it is important that if you are going to have a rule like this that it is set in stone and there are no exceptions made as people tend to get upset.

    I wrote a personal note on each invitation that this affected saying that we were really sorry x couldn't join us for the day however unfortunately we limited for numbers however we would be more than happy for them to join us for the evening. I think it really important to make it clear so there are no uncomfortable situations where they presume children are invited or rsvp including their names etc.

    On the day as we only had a small number of children there we had presents for all of them to keep them entertained through boring adult stuff like speeches. Colouring pads, kite etc. The older ones we gave them tasks like take a picture of the flower girls, take a picture of the horse and carriage etc.

    We had loads of games in the evening like connect 4 (the giant ones) that went down well with the kids but also with the adults!!

    Mrs Bx
  • The personal note is good idea, I will handwrite it and include it in the invitation. I think babes in arms are ok as you dont have to feed them the mother does. As long as she doesnt flop it out at the dinner table.

    I think I am going to go with the not having kids.

    We really cant afford it, now I have found out that my puppy needs a lot of vet care as poor mite needs surgery on a lump on his poor little head. I am waiting for the vets call today. He is only 4 months bless him!

    My friend had told me that at her mums wedding her children was an angel, I spoke to my mum last night and she said, "have they forgotten during the vows she ran up and down the aisle 4 times and then laid down in the aisle and put her legs in the air?". I laughed. I dont think her opinion was unbiased..after all if they dont come then at least it will be cheaper. My friend even suggested that we held a picnic for the children..not sure how that fits in with our 3 course autumnal meal.

    Speaking to my fiance last night, we both said that we would feel very sorry for anyone who was sitting on the same table as our nephews and brother and sister in law, they tend to ignore anyone that isnt to do with them or the children. For example at my fiancees 30th she sat in another room to everyone else with the 2 year old! The child also shouts out that he wants a dump, imagine that during the most important moment of your life! That we have saved up for. At the last family event for afternoon tea he liked all the scones and the mother just sat there!

    Sadly my venue doesnt do discount for children, just like how they charge £5 extra for anyone who attends in the evening on top of our £10k venue charge! They are con artists really but i figured I am going to get ripped off anywhere I go!
  • BTW when/if i have kids if anyone invites me to a wedidng and not the sprog. Its part-tay time!!! I am there!!!
  • As a parent of 2 boys, I would be happy to leave my children with a babysitter and have a relaxing stress free day, I would probably enjoy it more!!

    As a bride, I'm having the place full of children of all ages because that's what stage my life is at, the same stage as a lot of our friends and family. I do worry about stressing the parents out themselves, and if it will be difficult they can chose to leave them at home. For me, screaming and running around will go straight over my head!!
  • yeah i definitely think thats acceptable. the only problem is some of your guests may not come if they cant bring their child, i know from other weddings ive been to people dont go if they cant get anyone to look after their child. but im doing the same, im inviting immeadiate family children, but my cousins fiances children arent invited as she has 4 of them, and food is expensive lol. i seem like a *itch with it all, but its your day and thats all that matters image xx
  • We are in a similar situation to MrsStetch in that we are having a small civil ceremony with approx. 10 to 15 guests, but then a garden party style reception to which all our family, friends and any kids, etc are invited, as it made more sense to us to do it that way. We'd rather spend the budget on that than a big church do, flowers etc.

    If I was having a church wedding, and inviting guests with children, I would definitely ask them to sit near a door, so they can make a quick exit if they child needs something or gets tetchy. And, tbh, parents should be happy to do so.
  • We have 6 kids coming to the wedding, we invited 8 but the parents of the 2 kids are coming by themselves, plus its a bit of a trek for them with a 1 and 2 year old, loughborough to wigan. we didnt invite some people kids because we just chose not to. my fiances half sister will be 5 (nearly 6) shes being our flower girl, and the other kids are one of his cousins, and the others close family friends. its completely up to you about whether to have kids. i think that if there wasnt his half sister then we wouldnt have kids coming. its not that im opposed to children (both of us being teachers, lol) but i think sometimes some people just cant handle their children properly and cant keep them undercontrol. on our day we dont to be having to keep other peoples children under control (hence well behaved children being invited).
  • SarahMor84SarahMor84 Posts: 1,493
    I think you have to do what you want to do, we are only having our nephew and cousins baby (will only be 4 weeks old so can't leave him at home/with relatives as the parents will be away the whole weekend for our wedding).

    We made the decision not to invite children under 16 due to cost and space. My cousins have 6 children between than and we never see them (would not even be able pick them out if they walked past me in the street) so we made a decision for a blanket ban other than babies who are too young to be left for that amount of time.

    If you decide not to invite children you have to (like we have) expect that some people will not come.
  • i understand you totally. i have a 4 year old and a 1 year old and i really do not want any other children there. my partner has 5 nieces and nephew under the age of 7 which we have to invite, and then my two best friends have 3 children between them which makes it up to 12 including my two. when we get invited to weddings and the children invited i always leave the children with somebody as i enjoy the break. i wanted no children but my own but it caused problems so had to invite the children we are having.

    i am having a strict rule that come 8pm i want no children, including my own as i hate dance floors full of children and i want to be able to relax and enjoy my wedding instead of being on edge incase someone stands on one of the children.

    its your big day, you do as you want you are the ones paying for it, and at the end of the day most parents may be glad of a peaceful day!! xx
  • scrummie2bscrummie2b Posts: 266
    There are not many of our friends or family that have children, so we only really know about 8 people with children and we have invited the children as well.

    The kids are between 8 months and 8 years, but not everyone are taking them as they want to have a break and enjoy the day too! So I think we will have 7 children coming and there will be a childrens menu. We haven't counted them in our numbers.

    I think children can be quite entertaining at weddings, so I'm enjoying the fact that there will be kids at ours. We want it to be a fun filled relaxed day with all our close friends and family present.

    But every bride is different. Whats important is do what you want to do. Dont let people blackmail you by saying they can't come if there kids aren't being invited. If they were close toyou and wanted to be there they would make the effort to get babysitters ( aunts, un.cles, grans, grandads, friends etc)
  • We are having children at our wedding ageing from 7 months to 16 years we have explained to paents of the younger that we are going to sit them near the exiso that they can leave if it is necessary and they are fine with that.

    With regards to cost children under 5 eat free 5-8 £9.95 and over 8 to 16 alf price of an adult so its not to bad as most of them aged under 8.

    I do believe its up to individual choice and shouldnt feel pressured into doing something you are not happy with it.

    Good luck with it image
  • FinallyMrsCFinallyMrsC Posts: 194
    We are having close family children only - mainly because we are restricted on numbers by the size of the venue. Our friends with children have totally understood and all have said they will welcome a day to themselves!
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