Is it fair for the bride & groom to have a child-free wedding?

Photography by Sarah Eliza Photography

Children are gorgeous. Children are adorable. Children are funny; but most of all, children are full of fun and joy. Why wouldn’t couples want them at their wedding?

All the lovely mothers out there know how tiring it can be to control your gang when everyone has to be on their best behaviour. Though your children are your responsibility, your life, your joy and well… your everything, it doesn’t mean they’re all little angels. Some children are annoying little brats, there’s no doubt about it.

You’re probably reading this sitting with your coffee watching your kids release their morning energy, or standing on a packed bus on your way to work trying to ignore the screaming kids sitting restlessly across from you. You may be thinking that the only reason couple’s don’t want children at their wedding is because some of those monstrous little humans aren’t well-behaved.

That is actually not the only reason.

We all know weddings are costly, even without considering guests. However, once you’ve added guests seats to the list, guests meals and the favours, you’ll be left with nothing but a penny. …but what difference do children make?

Photography by Sarah Eliza Photography

Yes, they’re small, they’re not classed as adults, they do eat less than full grown adults and they don’t take long to tire out and fall to the ground. Besides those facts, they ARE classed as guests.

The bride and groom WILL have to pay for the additional tiny guests and arrange baby seats and access for prams. (Some families are rather large. Large enough to put a dent in their savings account. Some venues will allow children under a certain age for free but not everyone does. Some places ask $50 a head for children over two years of age. Depending on the number of children, that can add up rather quickly – and be incredibly inconvenient if the kids refuse to eat their chicken fingers. What a waste!) They WILL have to pay for their food (even if they don’t eat it). They WILL have to risk the children accidentally getting in the way during the day. They WILL have to give each child a small gift – for those snotty mother’s who think it’s unfair to only hand out favours to the adults. They WILL have to put up with any loud screams and crying from a few fuss-pots during the important times (like the ceremony, speeches and first dance). They WILL have to put in extra effort if they want to be social and catch up with the children’s parents – as all their attention will go to their kids. They WILL risk receiving complaints from other guests, especially dear elderly ones with fragile ears. They WILL want to let loose and enjoy themselves alongside their lovely guests without worrying about children.

Most parents don’t realise that couples are aware of how much babysitters cost. Couples know the struggle of getting a sitter for five hours on a Saturday night. They know it puts a dent in YOUR bank account, but it would be just as costly for the bride and groom to cover the costs of your children too.

Photography by Sarah Eliza Photography

The solution? Most couples are content with receiving a less expensive wedding gift if you are tight with money and need a sitter. The main thing they want is to see your faces! So if you need a sitter, don’t feel bad if you can’t afford a stunningly exquisite gift! They understand the effort you went to.

Also, if you are in a difficult position like having a newborn, it’s okay if you need to sit this one out. Marriage lasts forever but weddings are just parties, they’re celebrations. If you have to miss out on your close friend’s wedding it’s not the end of the world. You can celebrate their marriage with them at ANY time. Couples don’t expect all their guests to attend anyway, they won’t have any hard feelings against you if you are unable to make it!

In conclusion, yes children have as many rights as we do to be at a wedding BUT with all due respect, children aren’t always suited to such an adult occasion. If the bride and groom don’t want children at their wedding, it is fair and no one should judge them if they can’t afford to care for your little bundles of joy. After all, they aren’t parents. …yet! Let them have their special day, exactly as they wish. It is only ONE day.

Photography by Ed Jones Photography

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