The decision on whether to invite children to your wedding can be tricky,and sadly whatever your decision you’re bound to upset someone. After all no one is more passionate then “Mama Bear” who thinks her children are angels and why wouldn’t you want them at your wedding? Once you acknowledge that someone is going to cause a fuss, you can concentrate on making the best decision for you.
Talking as a parent
I know my husband and I would relish the thought of a wedding or party where children are not invited as this gives us the rare chance to enjoy ourselves without the responsibility of our children. But that said, what if the wedding isn’t local? The chances of someone having our 3 children for a whole weekend is unlikely, so we might have to decline such an invite.
Talking as a planner
With over 10 years experience as a planner I can see the benefits of having children at your event as frankly they can create cute moments with some fabulous photographs! I’ve had many brides say to me the children have made the wedding for them. The key is to keep them entertained, look at this past post from 2012 for some advice. You may think why should I spend time on organising the children but remember weddings can be tediously boring for a child and what happens when a child is bored? Mischief and Mayhem – not a good mix for a wedding!
But, at the same time children can cause disruption. Think screaming in the ceremony, running around during the speeches and taking up the dance floor in the evening. It depends on how many children and how well behaved. I’ve seen situations where parents are not watching their children, I’ve had to stop children from chasing ducks into a pond and escorted a small toddler who kept leaving the marquee at night whilst his parents were snoozing on a sofa!
Questions to ask yourself on children vs adult only
- Numbers: Count up all the children of family and friends to give you a clearer idea, you might be surprised when that number is creeping up
- Maturity: What are the ages, toddlers will invariably need highchairs next to parents whereas older children can be seated elsewhere on a ‘kids table’
- Cost: Will you be paying a child rate or adult rate for the meal and how does this affect your budget
- Capacity: Do you have venue restrictions on numbers
- Preferences: you might decide to just invite some children, if this is the case made the definition clear, i.e. immediate family only or children over a certain age
- Location: if your wedding is local to the majority of guests this is easier for them to arrange childcare as is unlikely to necessitate an overnight stay. So if your wedding is not local, and you don’t want to invite children, call your guests to give them a lot of early notice.
If you think you need help organising your party or wedding in East Anglia please don’t hesitate to contact me
My children – Paula Day
Children racing – Kerry Morgan