Most weddings are not too kid-friendly. The food is fancier, there are a lot of traditions that require a long attention span, and they can go way past their bedtime.
So, many people scramble to figure out how to make the wedding fun for kids and parents alike. This takes a lot of planning, not a last-minute phone call to a friend.
Redditor Present-Objective-88 encountered this very issue with her friend. So she turned to the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for moral judgment.
“AITA for not wanting to babysit children at a wedding?”
The Original Poster (OP) explained:
“My (23F) friend’s sister-in-law is getting married in November.”
“My friend is helping to plan the wedding and has been sharing some of the details with me. It has been previously understood that I would not be going to the wedding because I’m not a close friend of the bride or groom nor am I a relative.”
“This has never bothered me and I’ve just been excited to know that two people that love each other are getting married.”
OP’s friend had something else in mind.
“Today, my friend texted me and told me that I might have to go to the wedding.”
“When I asked her why, she told me it would be to take care of the guests’ children. I thought she was joking but then she insisted that she was serious. I asked if I would at least get paid for taking care of kids that aren’t mine and that I barely know and she said that going to the wedding was enough pay.”
“Personally, I find it a little disrespectful that I would be invited as a nanny and not as an actual guest that would get to enjoy the wedding as much as the other guests.”
“I’m not even interested in being invited but if they actually wanted me to go I would want to be a normal guest, not someone taking care of at least 3 kids under 10 years old that I don’t know how to handle.”
“However, I considered the fact that they might actually need someone to help out.”
“So, am I being dramatic and an AH or should I stand my ground?”
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.
“NTA. If they need a babysitter, they should pay for one. I would suggest staying far away from that wedding.” ~ Adara_Wyvern
“I’ve been hired as a wedding babysitter a few times and it’s a pain in the ass. You have to chase the kids all over the venue.”
“There’s always some drunk adult who comes over to take one of the kids and you don’t know if that’s their relative or some drunk rando. There’s usually tons of sweets available but not much kid friendly food.”
“Plus it’s nerve wracking to keep them from crying or acting up during the vows. The easiest ones are just watching a baby in a near by hotel room. But, all and all, you should get paid: it’s work and not that enjoyable.” ~ somaticconviction
“The last wedding I went to had no baby sitting service but it was still family friendly and they did have things for the kids to do. It was an outdoor wedding in a woodsy park area (so plenty of space to run around) plus they had a table with crayons and coloring pages, and several games set out for kids (or adults) like bean bag toss and some balls stuff.” ~ TheHatOnTheCat
Most agreed they should hire a professional.
“That sounds miserable. I don’t understand why people would bring young kids and dump them with someone else at the venue. Seems weird.”
“Whoever they get to be the kid wrangler absolutely deserves money. If they can’t afford to pay for it, don’t offer the service! The entitlement!” ~ Enilodnewg
“Friends of mine hired a service for their reception and insisted everyone bring their kids.”
“The service sent 3 people and they did ‘Pass the Parcel,’ art and outside games with the kids during the reception (wedding was outside and very relaxed so wrangling kids wasn’t an issue). The service people supervised the kids dinner (kids food was different to adult food), and them having their piece of wedding cake (they led the children in, got their slices, then ushered them back to the kids room to eat) before leaving around 8pm.”
“Which meant kids were the parents responsibilities during the dancing/last 4 hours of the reception (reception officially ended at midnight) so parents could choose when they left while having been present for the ‘important parts.'”
“It worked well, the parents could easily duck their heads in to check on their kids, the kids were entertained, parents got to eat and socialize and when the service left the bride pulled all the remaining kids (as some had left) onto the dance floor with her to have some fun.”
“My twins loved it. I was happy my boys wouldn’t be forced to sit at the ‘kids table’ bored to tears while the adults threw ribald comments at the bride and groom and did speeches like when I was growing up” ~ Aesient
“This service should be rolling in money if it’s not too pricey. It solves a whole lot of problems/issues that come up during the planning stage.” ~ nomad_l17
“I do it as a side job while studying and I only know the prices if they want us to stay longer than originally planned and one hour longer costs between 60-120€ (€->$ is nearly 1->1) depending on how many kids (so how many are working there) and if they rented the jumping castle also a little fee because in this extra time we will need more art supplies. Also working after 10 pm needs to get payed 1.5x your normal pay.”
“So you can take this Price multiply it with the hours booked + time and sprit used to get there + time for unloading the car/ prepare all and get it back into the car (~1/2 -1 hour each) + planning fee/money for my chef for organizing all and getting the cars with our supplies ready. So in the end travel time + 1-2 hours preparation + work time.”
“We can also be booked for sleep supervision for the kids. Then the bride/groom have to organize an extra room with beds or we bring little tents with us and we look after the kids while the parent are partying. But they have to bring their kids to bed themself and get them when our service ends/ send another one to watch them after.” ~ CelesteReckless
Taking care of so many kids should be left to the pros.