Choosing who to invite to your wedding is hard. So many people want to be part of the celebration, but not everyone can be there.
One way to shorten the guest list is making your wedding child-free. But, not every mom is happy to have an adult-only night.
Redditor justnosil1234 encountered this very issue with her sister in law. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for not allowing my SIL to bring her children to my child-free wedding?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“My fiancé and I are having our child-free wedding in a couple months.”
“While we adore children, we’ve been very open, honest, and communicative for the last five months with all our guests (speaking to each attendee personally) that due to ongoing global issues at hand (you all know what I’m talking about) and having a number of attendees to our wedding that are higher risk for issues related to that global issue, we will not be extending wedding invitations to any children under the age of 13 at our wedding.”
“We 100% agree this is the best decision to help us drastically reduce headcount and feel confident in going forward with our wedding as planned.”
Most people respected their decision.
“Everyone has been gracious, kind, and respectful of our decision except my soon to be sister in law. We discovered that she is still planning to bring her 4 year old and 7 year old to our wedding even though we have been talking to her for months now about our wedding being childfree.”
“Fiancé just called her and explained that while we would like her to attend, under no circumstances will her small children be allowed through the doors at the wedding due to our safety measures.”
“My soon to be sister in law threw a fit- she said that because her children are my fiancés niece and nephew they should receive an invite anyway and are more important than all my little cousins (which really offended me because I’m very close to my cousins), my parents were ‘unreasonable,’ that her 7 year old is ‘heartbroken’ and will ‘never recover from this,’ that she doesn’t trust anyone to watch her children because they are ‘all perverts.’ I guess this includes my sister in law’s 4 friends my fiancé noted she could ask who are local to the area of our wedding and wouldn’t be at our wedding so likely could watch them but she said it wouldn’t be possible for any of them to help.”
“Not that she has asked them.”
“And, for some reason her husband can’t be the one to stay home and watch them while she attends (supposedly) even though they only live a few hours away.”
“Finally, as she was going on and on about how my parents are awful for not allowing children, my fiancé reminded her this is what we also both decided and what I, the bride, wants.”
OP’s sister in law was not happy.
“She finally got quiet and said she would see what she could do but it was an awful thing to do to family, etc. etc.”
“The way I see it, she’s just rejecting every solution we give her because she is offended and wants to get her way. Also, the fact she was planning on sneaking behind our backs to bring her kids anyway, makes me really mad.”
“Is my anger at her inability to respect our wishes clouding my judgement that his little niece and nephew should be there? I just feel like a 4 year old isn’t going to remember it anyway and a seven year old barely will either.”
“I also think it would be horribly insulting to my family that we allowed only her children come… Reddit, AITA?”
Redditors gave their opinions on the situation by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
Most Redditors agreed OP was not the a**hole.
“If you let her bring her kids, it would be a slap in the face to the other parents that weren’t allowed to bring their kids.”
“If you let her bring her kids, you might as well let everyone do it.”
“In either case, your wedding, your rules.”
“She is not necessary to attend for the wedding to happen. If she can’t follow your wishes on YOUR wedding she can stay home.”
“Don’t discuss this with her anymore. If she beings it up again, tell her you’ve made up your mind and you’re not changing it. If she keeps asking, just pretend like you can’t hear her until she changes the topic, or you could just walk away. If you’re on the phone, just hang up. If it’s via text, pretend like it hasn’t been sent.”
“Focus on your big day.” ~ uWu_Cucumber
“I think she’ll show up with the kids, betting on the fact that once she’s there, they won’t dare throw her out. OP, if she does show up with the kids, call her bluff and throw her ass out of there.” ~ MeMeMeOnly
“Do we believe even for a moment that SIL’s reports of her precious babies being irrecoverably heartbroken by not being invited are even vaguely founded on truth (beyond the weak sense that she might have successfully coached one or both of them, especially the 4 year old, into believing that they are missing out on something actually fun)?”
“SIL is just playing ‘but you are hurting the children!!!’ as a cheap, manipulative, pity move.”
“She probably doesn’t even have a plan (except in the broad sense of dumping responsibility on whoever is the most convenient target) for what she’ll do when they (swiftly and inevitably) lose interest in what the adults are doing.” ~ fuzzyfuzzyfungus
OP added some comments.
“Edit: Thanks to everyone who has commented so far.”
“I appreciate getting the perspectives from those not so close to the situation (whether I’m the AH or not in your opinion!).”
“As of now, my fiancé and I have made our wedding coordinator, staff, and security at the venue very aware that any guests showing up with small children need to be turned away at the door. They can opt to take their kids home and come back to catch part of the reception. Presumably they’ll miss the ceremony, or simply return home, but our venue won’t be open to small children or, you know, anyone we didn’t invite or who isn’t attending as a plus one for a guest we were already aware of that day.”
“I’m truly praying and hoping it doesn’t come to that as it would be very awkward for her, but on the bright side it is unlikely my fiancé and I will be aware if that happens because we’ll be so busy taking first look pictures as guests arrive, we probably wouldn’t realize until after the ceremony.”
That is the definition of a child-free wedding.