Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rirlo01. Show Rirlo01's posts

    Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Trying to stay calm and not get anxious, but something I feared might happen has come to fruition.  It's not a crisis; it's just a matter of having to deliver news that will disappoint some people I happen to love.  We decided not to invite children to the wedding, and now that we're mailing out invitations, we're hearing from various couples how excited their kids are to see us at the wedding. 

    I love these children; having a reception that isn't suitable for them is not related to my feelings about them.  My FI and I have had the discussion many times, we know what we want, we know it's not what some people would do but this is right for us, etc.  There is no question that I have to say something.  Any advice for the right phrase(s)?  I figure I'll just say I'm sorry for the misunderstanding and that I love X, Y, and Z; but we can't accommodate them. 

    Do I need to get into the fact that tons of the guests have kids, so without picking and choosing - which we could never do - we simply couldn't fit them all?  I feel like that opens me up to defending my choice of venue.  I mean, if we set out wanting them all there, everyone knows we could have picked a bigger place.  Or do I mention the fact that it's an evening affair?  I'm thinking simple is best.  Anyone have any experience to confirm this or prove otherwise? 

    Help.  :(  I HATE hurting feelings.  I don't feel guilty for planning the reception that suits us best, but I do feel guilty for having to clarify the plans for people who made other assumptions.  Not the end of the world, I know, but still not pleasant. 

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    I think what you have in mind to say is great.
    "I'm sorry for the misunderstanding and that I love X, Y, and Z; but we can't accommodate them."

    It's honest, and it emphasizes the fact that you're not having any kids there due to space issues.

    Don't feel too badly about this. People shuld be able to tell from the wedding invitation whether or not their brood is welcome to come along. They shouldn't be assuming things like that.
     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from Winter2011Bride. Show Winter2011Bride's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Rirlo
    I am in the same situation, the only child that will be there is my 10-year old son.  Since my wedding is on a Saturday night (ceremony at 4), I would hope people would not want to bring their children.  However, if after I send the invitations people are inquiring I will simple tell them politely that other my son there will no children there under the age of 18. 
     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from mezzogal1124. Show mezzogal1124's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Rirlo, assuming you addressed the envelopes only to the people invited (i.e. "Mr. and Mrs. John Doe", not "The Doe Family"), please rest assured that you are in the right, they are in the wrong, and there is no reason for you to feel uncomfortable or guilty.  Not to sound heavy-handed, but your friends/family frankly should know better than to presume to invite people to your wedding whose names were not listed on the invitation. 

    I agree that it's best to keep it simple.  Simply say that it's an evening affair and, therefore, inappropriate for children, but you would love to celebrate with their whole family soon.  If you happen to know of any local babysitters, it would be a kind gesture to recommend them.  If not, don't sweat it. 

    I feel bad that these friends have put you in an uncomfortable position, but it's really not your problem.  Good luck!
     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Personally, I'd stay away from saying anything about appropriate-ness. I think stating space or budget constraints is a little more neutral and people are less likely to take it personally.
    clearly they think it's appropriate to bring kids to an evening wedding if they've already read the invite and responded, so telling them otherwise is sometimes more of an uphill battle than saying "Sorry, can't accommodate them."

    people have funny ideas about what's appropriate, and it's hard to change their minds.
     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from WhirledPeasPlease. Show WhirledPeasPlease's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    We didn't have any kids at our wedding either (it was small: 84 guests), and we had our parents grease the wheels by word-of-mouth before we sent out invitations. 

    Go with the "can't accommodate them" line and don't waver. Also, don't invite debate on the subject. "Oh, we love seeing the kids, but unfortunately we just can't accommodate children at the wedding! We'll have to get together for dinner another time. Anyway, I've been meaning to ask you where you got that dress, I love it!"
     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from lucy7368. Show lucy7368's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Just try to keep calm and remember that you're in the right.  If you say that you weren't able to accomodate children, it's really unreasonable for someone to tell you that you should have rented a larger venue (and spent hundreds of extra dollars on a caterer) just so you could invite a bunch of little people who will:
    1) be bored;
    2) have little idea of what's going on;
    3) will be cranky and tired when their parents keep them out until 11 pm.

    I mean, putting aside my personal feelings about kids, I was dragged to a LOT of wedding when I was 12-14 and, really, other than my sisters' weddings, I would have been happy to skip them all. 
     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from mezzogal1124. Show mezzogal1124's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Point well-taken, Pink, you are right that people have very different ideas of what's appropriate.  I didn't mean to sound snobby when I wrote it, but it's a huge pet peeve of mine when people don't understand how to read an invitation and end up making the bride and groom feel guilty about whom they decide to invite/not invite to their own wedding. 

    Also, having had one too many dinners in nice restaurants ruined lately by entitled parents who felt it would be lovely to bring along their disruptive kids along, I may be speaking out of frustration, as well! Undecided
     
  9. You have chosen to ignore posts from poppy609. Show poppy609's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Riorlo - Did these people already get the invitations, or are you just mailing them now, but people have already assumed their kids are invited?  If they are looking at their invitations (that do not have the kids' names on them) and still assuming their kids are invited, they're definitely making a faux-pas.

    I think your proposed short, simple response is great.  If you felt that you wanted to add a bit more to maybe soften things, you could throw something in like, "... but I also can't wait to see your kids again at [insert other event here]" or "I would LOVE to stop by and see you and your family!"

     
  10. You have chosen to ignore posts from pinkkittie27. Show pinkkittie27's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    In Response to Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?:
    [QUOTE]Point well-taken, Pink, you are right that people have very different ideas of what's appropriate.  I didn't mean to sound snobby when I wrote it, but it's a huge pet peeve of mine when people don't understand how to read an invitation and end up making the bride and groom feel guilty about whom they decide to invite/not invite to their own wedding.  Also, having had one too many dinners in nice restaurants ruined lately by entitled parents who felt it would be lovely to bring along their disruptive kids along, I may be speaking out of frustration, as well!
    Posted by mezzogal1124[/QUOTE]

    no, I totally agree and I didn't think you were snobby at all!
     
  11. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rirlo01. Show Rirlo01's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Thanks, everyone.  I appreciate the support.  Still, I'm so dreading this. 

    Wish me luck.  Perhaps they'll be understanding. 

    Oh, and Poppy, they are assuming w/o invitations in hand.  I wasn't really clear about that; we are *just* sending them, so there's no way anyone's received one yet.  (I'm bracing myself for post-mailing fall-outs, too, but we haven't gotten that far.)  I completely understand how assumptions like this come to be, I really do; people are excited, and that's flattering.  They just have no idea how much disappointment (for the kids) and anxiety (for me in having to clarify) they could have saved had they waited.  I'll go heavy on the love and will definitely offer another time to visit with the whole family. 
     
  12. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Rirlo, I think your response sounds fine.  I also think it's ok to say you had to make a decision because there would have been so many kids involved. 
    I explained to a couple of friends that inviting their children would have opened a can of worms and they seemed to understand.  If anyone comments that you should have picked a different venue, well, he/she is a jerk!  But I honestly don't think anyone would say that.

    Will anyone with children be traveling to your wedding?  If so, I would also figure out what your response is to that dilemma.
     
  13. You have chosen to ignore posts from framerican51008. Show framerican51008's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Don't worry too much about the kids!  Even if they are disappointed, they will forget all about it in a week.  But parents say all the time that their kids are looking forward to something when really the kids aren't even aware :o)
     
  14. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Imagine the worst response to this issue possible, how you'll handle it, and go for it.  Chances are the worst reaction you can possibly imagine won't happen, and, even if it does, you'll have a plan. 

    You will hurt feelings sometimes, but never on purpose so try to cut yourself some slack, and not get so worked up when it might happen.  If it does, it does, and you'll apologize and life will go on.
     
  15. You have chosen to ignore posts from laryan. Show laryan's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    we decided to have a child free wedding, and had come across guests who assumed their children were invited.

    we made it clear very early that we were having a "child free wedding" and addressed our invititations appropriately.  we also had to make calls to people who responded that their children were coming despite the fact they weren't invited, and to make a decision...either secure your own childcare in advance and come, or don't come at all...

    we had to tell people that "we'd love to have your children, but due to budget and venue constraints, we can't"....some people aren't going to be happy, but its a situation they aren't paying for your wedding..you are!
     
  16. You have chosen to ignore posts from laryan. Show laryan's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    edited to add:  you will be amazed how people don't know how to read the addressing of an invitation...be prepared to fight...develop a spine real quick! 
     
  17. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rapunzel41. Show Rapunzel41's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    We encountered that to a point, even after the invitations went out.  We just said, "We're having an adult only wedding."  Most of the parents were thrilled - they WANTED the night off to have some fun!

    I encouraged my MOH to bring her daughters to the bridal shower (they're 10 and 11) so they would feel included.  They helped their mom and grandmother  with assembling all the favors and games for the shower, and it's was great to be able to include them there.  

    Unfortunately I had to tell my FSIL that she couldn't bring HER daughters to the rehearsal / rehearsal dinner.  They're 4 and 6 and my FSIL is our officiant.  (Um, duh?!)

    Just hold the line and as others have said, don't waiver!
     
  18. You have chosen to ignore posts from kargiver. Show kargiver's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    The rehearsal and dinner are not remotely the same as the shower.  I'd think it would be obvious that little ones of the officiant, no matter who it is, aren't invited.  People's ignorance shouldn't make anyone feel bad for needing to point out and insist on the obvious.
     
  19. You have chosen to ignore posts from trex509. Show trex509's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    Really?  I actually think it is pretty unkind to not invite the children of your future SIL to the rehearsal dinner (maybe not the actual rehearsal, although I don't think that is a big deal either).  That is a family event and these kids will soon be your nieces.  There is enough family involved to watch the children.

    But then, our RD was pretty informal, I guess if you are doing it somewhere fancy then it doesn't work.  We had 7 kids there from age 2 mos to 7 years old, they all had fun and it was so nice for the families to meet and spend time together since a lot were from out of town.
     
  20. You have chosen to ignore posts from Rapunzel41. Show Rapunzel41's posts

    Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?

    In Response to Re: Ugh - Any advice for uncomfortable discussion regarding invitations?:
    [QUOTE]Really?  I actually think it is pretty unkind to not invite the children of your future SIL to the rehearsal dinner (maybe not the actual rehearsal, although I don't think that is a big deal either).  That is a family event and these kids will soon be your nieces.  There is enough family involved to watch the children. But then, our RD was pretty informal, I guess if you are doing it somewhere fancy then it doesn't work.  We had 7 kids there from age 2 mos to 7 years old, they all had fun and it was so nice for the families to meet and spend time together since a lot were from out of town.
    Posted by trex509[/QUOTE]

    As mentioned, the FSIL is also our officiant, so if the kids came to dinner, they'd also be at the rehearsal.  No way around that.

    We spend plenty of time with the girls, but our weekend plans do not include the children for any of the events.  Just our preference, both for space and for cost.  There are already 18 people attending dinner. 
     

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