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What's Up Weddings

Ask the Editor: Inviting Kids To Your Wedding

Mar 15, 2012 11:31PM ● By Anonymous

Question: I have a dilemma. My Aunt Celia expects me to invite my cousins, Tom and Eric, who are nine and 13, to my wedding. I’m planning a small, elegant wedding, and there is only space in the reception hall for 85 guests. I love my cousins, but they are restless boys who couldn’t possibly enjoy a candlelight dinner, the chamber music ensemble, or the dancing to follow. She is pressuring my mother (her sister) to force me to invite them, although my plan is to keep the guest list to adults only. What should I do?

Answer: There are three options here: First, you could put your foot down and stick to the adults-only guest list. As the bride, you’re within your right to do so, especially if you are footing the bill for the day. Two, open the guest list up to certain children. This is tricky—it can cause resentment on behalf of the guests who aren’t allowed to bring their children to the wedding. Three, create a parallel celebration with pizza, a kid’s movie, and a local trusted babysitter. The kids get a fun night with some new friends, and their parents get to attend your elegant, child-free wedding. Discuss the situation with your mother and determine if together you can work something else that will keep the entire family in good graces with one another.