There is an on-going debate going online regarding inviting children to weddings. I got married 18 years ago, and this debate was fore front during our wedding. My husband and I have differing philosophies about children and weddings. I don’t think kids should be at weddings, particularly evening weddings. My husband disagrees. Being the bride, I won (kind of) that argument. There were children who attended the wedding, who were not invited, but they were not turned away either. Here were my reasons for wanting a child-free wedding.
First of all, I am not a kid person. I have children now, but back in the 1990s when I got married I did not care for children. I didn’t want to be around kids. My mom owned a daycare growing up, and I avoided children unless I absolutely had to be around them. I had attended my friends’ and family’s weddings in the past, and had seen children running around, unsupervised. The most poignant thing I remember is going to my cousin’s wedding months before my own wedding, and watching a child licking the frosting off of her cake. I was in the midst of planning my wedding and I knew how much cakes cost. I was horrified! My cake was around $300, I would have been heartbroken if a child did that to my cake.
Secondly, Shane is a classically trained violinist. He handpicked all the music that was played during our wedding. We spent a lot of money on a string quartet. I didn’t want the music we handpicked to be punctuated by crying children. I didn’t want to watch the tape of my wedding and hear someone else’s kid crying. I have a child with autism and Tourette’s, and I would not want him to do the same thing at someone else’s wedding.
Finally, my mom did daycare, she retired this year. I have seen her at various events throughout my life where she has gone and the first thing that happens is someone plops a child on her lap, and walks away. I am my mom’s only daughter. I didn’t want her to come to her only daughter’s wedding, and end up taking care of someone else’s child. It’s funny how many people assumes, because someone does daycare that they enjoy children every waking moment of their lives. I didn’t want my mom, who worked hard to help me plan the wedding, to be someone’s childcare. I wanted her to enjoy the wedding, and bask at how beautiful it was.
The reception hall and caterer did have a children’s meal, and I had no qualms about ordering a kids’ meal for the children in attendance. Paying for a meal that would not be eaten was not the reason I didn’t want kids in attendance. I wanted my wedding to be an adult affair. Before calling someone out for being selfish, I think parents of children need to remember that not everyone wants our children around.