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  • Writer's pictureEvie West

Should I have children at my wedding?

I've seen a lot of posts on social media recently saying that due to the pandemic, couples are including children in their weddings more than they used to - whether it's their own children or guest's children, more are being invited to weddings now than before the pandemic. This doesn't mean that you have to have them if you'd prefer an adult only celebration. At the end of the day, it's your wedding and you have to do what you'd like - you just have to think carefully about how you'll go about it.

Children at wedding. Page boy and flower girls. Gold and ivory flower girl dresses. Navy page boy.

There are ways to tell your guests that their children aren't invited that are clear and firm - without being rude. But before you start telling people that their little ones aren't included, you need to sit down with your partner and work out what children, if any, you want at your wedding.

You have a few options:

  • You could decide to have no children at your wedding at all. Make sure that you decide if you're saying no under 12s, under 16s etc.

  • If you have your own child/children, you may opt to only have them at your wedding. If this is the case, make sure that you have an allocated person (or even better - a nanny) looking after them throughout the day. You don't want to be worrying about where they are etc and when no one in particular is in charge, accidents are more likely to happen.

  • Choosing to have only family children is another option. You need to be clear on whether that is direct relatives of the couple (i.e. nieces and nephews) or if this is going to include wider relatives, for example your cousins' children.

  • Another option is to have children in the bridal party and no others. This gives you the opportunity to include God-children, for example, if they don't fall in to the family bracket. It is often done at Royal Weddings; we saw this at Harry and Meghan's nuptials where they had older children (Prince George and Princess Charlotte) but even babies from the same family weren't present (Prince Louis).

  • You could decide to only include babes in arms, as they won't need a specific seat/catering and it is a little harder for parents of new-borns to find alternative care; or you might choose to have only older children who are walking/independently mobile!

  • Your other option is to go all out and invite everyone's children - irrespective of age! If you're going to have a lot of children at your wedding then you probably want to consider a separate room for them with hired in nannies to watch/entertain them. This allows your guests to enjoy the day knowing their little ones are close by and can find them if they need to.

Wedding day entertainment for children. Wedding day soft play. Garden wedding.

Whichever option you choose, make sure that both of you are happy with the decision and that you're clear with your guests from early on - parents will need some time to sort childcare/sort arrangements for bringing them to your wedding.

One idea is to include a little note on your save the dates - giving parents a good amount of time to work out what they're going to do. If there are only a handful of parents invited, you may prefer to send them a little message directly to let them know. I would definitely make sure that on your invitations you clearly name who is invited, this gives a firm message that children are/aren't invited.

Don't be afraid to stand your ground with your decision and don't feel like you have to keep explain yourself. Most people will respect your decision and either be happy to have an evening off, or will politely decline if they're unable to make it. You may also find that parents with invited children also decide to leave them at home!!

Children at weddings is a personal preference - there is no right or wrong, you just need to do what you both want and let your guests know in a respectful manner.

If you'd like support navigating through your wedding planning journey have a look at my website to see how I can help!

Photographs courtesy of Steven & Karen at All Occasions Photography -

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