Is it wrong to want an adult-only wedding? Absolutely not.
Is it wrong to tell my friends that their little bundle of joy isn't welcome at my wedding? Absolutely not (but maybe not in those words?!).
Is it wrong to want to not have to worry about a baby crying during the ceremony? Absolutely not.
Is it wrong to want my friends and family to be able to let their hair down and not have to worry where their kids are? Absolutely not.
Whatever your reason for considering a child-free wedding, you are not a bad person. But you have to be prepared for a rude comment or potential backlash from your Mum's third cousin. Not allowing children at your wedding is a contentious issue that will rouse varying emotions.
For many couples, seeing their best friend's little girl toddle around in a pretty dress with a big bow on the back is what makes their heart happy, as children can provide many memorable moments during a wedding and steal the show at any unsuspecting point.
But it isn't for everyone, and that's perfectly ok. If you're unsure what to do there are some ideas that can help please everyone.
This is a popular idea at lots of weddings. Grandparents can often be seen at 8pm collecting grandchildren whilst their parents then get to enjoy the evening reception with a couple of gins lined up waiting. This can either be set by you or discussed with your guests as to what they want to do. We often do this with our young children who are invited to weddings, and it works really well.
There are plenty of companies out there who offer great ad varied services for kids. Consider a reserved child-friendly area which can be filled with soft play equipment or toys, or perhaps pop on a film during dinner or speeches. If your budget allows, it may be worth researching a children's entertainer. A magician or a Disney Princess, for example, may be perfect to keep the children's attention. These professionals will be well experienced and full of bright ideas to keep everyone happy.
There are many options here. If your venue (and the weather) allows, how about a bouncy castle to burn off some energy before dinner or hire some jumbo outdoor games for the kids. I've seen this get pretty exciting with adults involved too! If your wedding is predominantly inside, an arts and crafts area works amazingly to keep busy hands and minds happy! With some careful and thorough preparation, this would be great at keeping kids quiet for a while.
Chances are most kids won't be feeling the glorious food you have spent hours tasting and deliberating over (let alone paid for!), and hungry kids are certainly no fun! Having a menu specifically for the children will ensure those little tummies are full and no hangry meltdowns!
This can be a pretty pricey option, hiring a childcare company to watch over the group could be the best way to a stress-free day. These experts will know exactly how to keep everyone happy and be used to a tough crowd, as well as bringing lots of ideas and creative things to do. Ensure you shop around, and definitely try and get recommendations if possible.
Whether you allow children at your wedding or not is a huge, and highly controversial, decision. As a couple, you should talk in-depth about the pros and cons, and stand together on your final decision. Either way, if you plan ahead and ensure parents know, you can all navigate this tricky decision together, and ensure for a smooth wedding day.