To ask directly or otherwise if I can bring my baby?

(67 Posts)
ivanapoo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:10:06

DH and I have been invited to a wedding of one of his family members - would like to attend but our EBF DS will be 4 months old then, and the invite stipulated (in rhyming couplets no less) they wanted a child free wedding.

We also had an almost child free wedding due to the size of our venue and expense but made it v clear that young babies were welcome and in the end a single parent friend brought his 2 year old as well as childcare fell through.

My lovely but quite forceful MIL said she would ask them if my DS is allowed to come as she felt this wouldnt apply to such a young baby - but I don't want them to feel awkward/unable to say no and I respect their right to ask for no kids whatsoever if that's what they want.

(I would consider expressing and just attend part of the wedding - but it's in the middle of the countryside several hours away from where my parents are and I wouldn't want anyone else to look after him at this age except close family so logistically it's a bit tricky.)

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 25-Jan-13 13:11:21

YANBU - I would ask the question. Someone asked me for our wedding which was generally child free because of cost and not having children at the time I didn't quite understand how breast feeding works. I was happy to say yes.

stormforce10 Fri 25-Jan-13 13:12:21

ask the worst they can say is no.

I don't understand child free weddings. Surely weddings are about family and friends and children are a big part of that. Each to their own though

I don't get chid free weddings either.
TBH I don't think I'd be going if they said no

alarkaspree Fri 25-Jan-13 13:17:43

They definitely won't say yes if you don't ask. So you should ask, and if they say no, politely decline the invitation for you and send dh on his own.

If they are childless they may well be oblivious to the difficulties of childcare for young babies.

HappyAsASandboy Fri 25-Jan-13 13:17:53

I think if they have gone to the effort of stipulating (in rhyme!) that they don't want kids there, then I think that would include a baby.

If there is no way your parents could/would go with you and have the baby for you (maybe its a nice hotel and they could stay and walk baby round the grounds, go for a nice lunch etc) and you could meet them every now and then to feed and have the baby in with you overnight, then I would either decline or send DH on his own.

Andro Fri 25-Jan-13 13:19:10

Child free weddings are usually a product of either cost limitation or the bride/groom/both have seen a wedding go horribly wrong as a result of children not being kept under suitable control.

TheMightyLois Fri 25-Jan-13 13:20:43

I think most people understand that young babies are the exception - I'd just ask them outright.

Whocansay Fri 25-Jan-13 13:20:48

Why don't you send a quick text / email? Then you haven't put them on the spot and they can think about it. YANBU at all and sound lovely to be thinking of how they would feel.

ivanapoo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:21:08

Thanks, maybe i will ask.

We had a child-light wedding because if we'd have invited all of our many cousins' children we would have had to cut pretty much all of our friends - and most of the kids don't even know our names. I'd also gone to a child-heavy wedding the year before and you couldn't hear the vows etc as too many kids were babbling/shouting/crying.

To find a bigger venue would have cost quite a bit more, money we didn't have (our venue was free) and we had a lot of stress with another venue falling through. In hindsight though I would have tried to find a way to invite them all.

Pilfette Fri 25-Jan-13 13:21:31

I'm agog as to how you get 'no children' into rhyming couplets.

But YANBU to ask, worst they can say is no, then you will have to decide what's right for you and your baby.

People don't always think of babies in the "no children" bit though - they just don't want them running around and getting in the way of other things. Ask - if you say "DS will be 4 months and I'm still bf'ing, did you mean all children or not?" then they can tell you one way or the other.

IceNoSlice Fri 25-Jan-13 13:23:16

Ask them (don't let MIL ask) and make it clear you understand if they say no.

atthewelles Fri 25-Jan-13 13:24:05

I understand child free weddings. If you ask one friend's kids you have to invite everyone's which could end up with huge numbers of children all adding to the cost of the wedding. (Not to mention the fact that there is bound to be one or two muppets of parents who think its fine for their DCs to run around shouting during the ceremony and drowing out the vows, or who won't take a screaming baby out of the church etc).

Bejeena Fri 25-Jan-13 13:24:29

I agree that a young baby would be an exception, perhaps they have already assumed you will be bringing him anyway and no children means children and not babies. Just ask or politely say you assume that your DS is ok to come, I really think it would be unreasonable of the bride and groom to say no to that.

atthewelles Fri 25-Jan-13 13:25:01

YANBU by the way. A small baby is different as long as the parents have common sense.

ivanapoo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:26:18

Happy yes I did think of that but it's not in a hotel and the nearest cafe/hotel is a fair few miles away by the looks of it unfortunately.

I will think about sending a carefully worded email and take it from there.

To be honest we're not particularly close so although I'd like to go no tears will be shed if I'm not there!

fieldfare Fri 25-Jan-13 13:27:00

Definitely ask, but you might have to give assurances that as soon as the baby starts whimpering you'll leave the room to see to them.

DontmindifIdo Fri 25-Jan-13 13:27:02

If they have told you no children - then you should politely decline, but make it's clear that's why you are declining so how about an e-mail to them saying "dear X&Y, we'll do a formal RSVP to Y's parents, but just wanted to let you know we're really sorry but we're not going to be able to come to your wedding. We'd love to join you but as [DS] is exclusively breast fed, I can't leave him with a childminder as a parent of an older child could. We both really hope you have a fabulous day and look forward to seeing lots of wonderful photos! Love ivan"

If they hadn't meant 'babes in arms' or hadn't thought though you can't leave your DS, they will then reply that they will of course make an exception for DS and if it was just they couldn't afford an extra 30+ meals (as some weddings would be with DCs there) etc.

Then make sure you've told MIL that you've been in direct contact already and she doesn't have to worry about it.

givemeaclue Fri 25-Jan-13 13:27:11

Please share the no child rhyme!!!. Hilarious! We can help you send a rhyming response

Pandemoniaa Fri 25-Jan-13 13:28:59

YANBU to ask for clarification although I rather suspect that anyone who needs to write the horror that is a rhyming couplet may be less than reasonable themselves.

In fairness I do think childless couples often have no idea that it may be difficult for guests to make arrangements for very young babies. I didn't have a child free wedding myself but equally, I was stupendously ignorant about babies too.so just ask and then you can make your plans around their decision.

givemeaclue Fri 25-Jan-13 13:29:11

I thought it may be best,
As baby is still at the breast,
To bring him along on the day,
Or are you saying, "no way"

Please someone do better...

KenLeeeeeee Fri 25-Jan-13 13:29:25

YANBU to ask and YWNBU to decline the invitation if they say no. DH's sister wanted a child-free wedding but that went out of the window thankfully . Otherwise it had also been made clear that if our dc4 had been born by then (my due date was around the same time as the wedding), I would not have been permitted to bring him to the service or speeches either even though he would have been a matter of days old and EBF. Had that all come to pass, I wouldn't have gone to the wedding at all - not to be arsey, but just because there's no practical way I could have left him.

LadyBeagleEyes Fri 25-Jan-13 13:33:39

Applauds givemeaclue grin

ComposHat Fri 25-Jan-13 13:34:28

You can ask, I guess, but don't be too hurt if the answer's no. It won't be a slight upon you or the baby.

As someone who is trying to organise a child free wedding, I could see that if we'd said yes to one couple bringing a child then the other parents would be cats bum facing it all through the wedding 'why can't my little darling come if so and so is allowed to bring her child'

As for those who don't understand child free weddings -

1) yes weddings are about family and friends. Neither of our siblings have children, if they did, we might have planned things differently. My friends' children I don't have a close relationship with, they are part of their parents lives, but not mine particularly.

2) Headcount and budget. Children count towards this. This means that if we invite someone plus their three children, it means that three people we are close to and would like to be there can't come. We can't afford to accommodate everyone's children.

3) Children at weddings aren't everyone's cup of tea. I have sat through ceremony after ceremony has been rendered inaudible by a screaming child. (The same happened during a eulogy during a relative's funeral but that's another tale) Also children shouting out is neither cute or endearing, neither id flinging food or running between tables during the meal. I don't blame the kids themselves, often they fractious because they are tired and bored, as I don't think all-day wedidngs are suited to them. Parents are often quite slow to take the child out of the venue when they are having a screaming fit too.

I know these arguments have been done to death and apologies for rehashing them and I agree each to their own, but I think there is a sound rationale behind not having children there.

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