Having a no kid wedding can be a sensitive and somewhat controversial topic, but ultimately, it is your wedding, so your wedding guest list is UP TO YOU! That said, anyone planning an adults-only wedding usually runs into some issues, from invitation wording questions to dealing with guests who won’t get the message. Our best advice is to be honest, yet tactful. Follow these important etiquette tips for planning an adults-only wedding without hurting anyone’s feelings.
Address Your Invitations PROPERLY and CAREFULLY
Make it clear from the beginning that your wedding is adults only. How? Address each invitation to exactly those invited, otherwise some guests with children might assume their whole family is welcome. You can also go the extra mile and write in their exact names on the invitation so they know only “Mr. and Mrs. Kofi Owusu” are invited.
Mention It on Your Wedding Website
Your wedding website is a place to share important wedding info—both the basics and additional details (your registry, transportation options, dress code and more). That makes it a great place to slip in a note about keeping your wedding adults-only. Try something like “Because we wish to give all our guests a fun evening, we have opted for our wedding day to be an adults only event. Hopefully, you will be able to still attend our reception and enjoy having a night off!” or simply “Adult reception to follow”
Call Anyone Who Assumes Their Kids Are Invited
It’s normal to start hearing from family members who are questioning why your younger cousins, nieces and nephews aren’t allowed to come. Address the sensitive issue right away by calling and explaining, unfortunately, you can’t invite everyone you’d like. You can blame it on budget and venue constraints (if you want), which often wards off further protests and avoids hurt feelings. But remember, you don’t have to give a long explanation. You’re not going to please everyone, but it’s okay to say an adults-only wedding is a personal decision you’ve made, and leave it at that.
Even if you’ve properly addressed the invites, shared via word of mouth and posted a note on your website, be prepared to get some pushback. Just remember, like with other decisions you’re making, this is your day and you and your partner get to decide who’s invited to the wedding—PERIODT. Address the issue and upset parents with sensitivity, but don’t back down.
For Guests – Respect the Couple’s Wishes
Being invited to a wedding is an honour. It means the couple wants to share their day with you and is essentially spending money on you. The least you could do is respect their wishes. There might be other reasons children are not allowed at the wedding; budget or venue constraints etc. – you don’t know. Bottom line is it’s not your wedding; no need to get offended. And please don’t bring children anyway and justify it by bringing a nanny. That’s actually two mouths over the budget. No kids means no kids. You and your spouse could choose to make this a date night and have the freedom to properly enjoy the party (and the alcohol!)