Children, our major issue

Our only major arguments and family issue during planning our wedding was about children. There were only 3 families invited to our wedding with children, we didn’t have any children ourselves and at that moment in our lives we didn’t surround ourselves with them and The Boy was probably a bit scared of them to be honest. We decided to have a child free wedding.  This was not an issue for 2 of the couples. The first were travelling from Belfast and were attending 6 weddings in one year, some would be family and closer to home but they were enjoying the fact that for some they could go child free and let their hair down. The other guest with a young child was my bridesmaid, her Dad was unable to attend the wedding and being on bridesmaid duty mum was happy to have a day off and enjoy herself. The third set of children were my cousin’s kids, a girl of 10 and a boy of 7. Now the great debate of 2013 began…

At post toddler age there would be no crying or tantrums (you’d hope) so would they be a bother, but it wasn’t really fair to say to two sets of close friends that their children couldn’t come but then they sit near some children, double standards surely? If we were saying we would have a child free wedding we should stick to our guns, but they are family doesn’t that make a difference, and so on and so forth. I was more on the side of compromise, The Boy wasn’t having any children at his wedding (and it is his wedding too, easy to forget if you head to bridezilla territory) if they make him feel uncomfortable or wouldn’t interact with them then why have them there. Also, my friends were leaving 18 month old girls at home and looking forward to a day off, why would parents of older children be precious? And let’s be perfectly honest the children themselves won’t give two hoots. We were however looking at this from a very simple child free point of view so I worried about the fall out.

We sent invitations out to just those invited (minus children, I relented eventually coming to terms with the decision and happy in it). We received an RSVP for all the family including the children, what followed were awkward conversations and the decision for them to either come alone or not come at all, they took the latter option. Which meant my other cousin, who had already RSVP’s yes, now wasn’t able to come and then I had my mum on the phone saying I had to change my mind to avoid a family feud. I then spent the rest of the day in tears and then I got annoyed that I would have been the only one crying about my own day.

In the end they all came to the church and left before we went to the reception and everyone has stayed civil and there’s no feud as mum worried about, but it was the worst part of planning our day. I’m glad I stuck to my guns but I never expected all that to happen, I have a small family so thought it would be straightforward. It definitely goes to show that when it comes to weddings it can make people do funny things, I felt like our day wasn’t appreciated as important enough because of the hassle it caused, but maybe we were the bad guys and should have relented? Who out there is having issues with family? Do you have step mothers and fathers or extra family causing issues and have you had an idea for your wedding, like being child free, that is forcing you to be strong while all around people try and pull you down? xx

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