Invited To A “Kids-Free” Wedding: How Should You React?
Unfortunately, we live in an age where young children are banned from a variety of public spaces. Theme parks, cinemas, and even restaurants have all banned young kids over the past few years, but there is one particular event where a ban on children is particularly difficult to cope with: weddings.
The rise of the “kid-free” wedding
It is understandable why a couple in your life may choose to implement a “kids-free” rule for their wedding. Young children – through no fault of their own – can be disruptive to the event, and particularly the ceremony. Many couples also want to ensure their guests have a great time, and are able to enjoy the food, party all night to the DJ they hired from www.PartyDjHireSydney.com.au, and let their hair down – all of which can be difficult if guests are also attending to the needs of their children.
However, even the most empathetic parent will usually struggle to comprehend this decision on a personal level. As www.Mamamia.com.au discuss, attending a wedding is already expensive; adding the cost of a babysitter onto this is far from ideal. So if you receive a “no-kids” invite, how should you handle it?
Strategies to consider
First and foremost, it’s worth running the numbers to see how much it would cost to attend the wedding and hire a babysitter for the event. If the wedding is close to your home and you have access to low-cost babysitting options – such as your parents – then it may be feasible to attend the event without your child. While this may not be your preference, it is usually advisable to at least try and comply with the couple’s wishes where possible.
However, if the numbers don’t add up, then your best bet is to speak to the member of the couple that you are closest to. Honesty is definitely your best policy here: “I’d love to come, but the childcare costs are so high that I’m not sure it will be feasible”. It’s best to keep the conversation light and friendly, carefully explaining how their policy will impact your family, keeping in mind the fact that there’s every chance the couple didn’t even think to factor in babysitting costs when making their request.
The ball is now in their court. In many cases, they will accept your concerns, and change the policy. In others, they may hold firm, even if that means you can’t attend. While the latter is incredibly difficult to cope with, it is helpful to remember this is their wedding, and they probably have good reason for setting the policy in place – for example, they have previously attended a wedding where there was an issue with childcare, and thus promised themselves their own wedding would be “kid-free” as a result. While you may struggle to understand this decision, you can acknowledge it as legitimate in an effort to keep relations friendly.
Regardless of the fairness of a “kids free” policy, a couple have a right to choose how they want their wedding to be – even if this makes attendance impossible for parents. All you can do is be honest about the issue of childcare and explain your predicament in a loving way, and hope that there is a workaround that will allow you and your children to attend.
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