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Kimberly
Savvy September 2022

Kids at rehearsal dinner?

Kimberly, on June 30, 2022 at 9:36 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 6
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Hi everyone. I need some advice before making a decision.


I told my future sister in law and my cousin that my wedding would be child free. My future sister in law said that it would be totally fine and even said that’s what she wanted for her wedding. My cousin sounded like she might not be able to attend because of it, but I have yet to know for sure. I completely understood that they might not be able to come and am super understanding of what they decide.
My future mother in law asked me if their kids can come to the rehearsal dinner and/or breakfast since the sister is driving them into town for the wedding weekend causing her husband to babysit them in the hotel for the weekend.
As of now, I’ll bend and let them come to the breakfast for sure. But I’m not too sure I want them at the rehearsal dinner. We have our reasons for not wanting kids I just need some insight from others to make my decision.

6 Comments

Latest activity by Michelle, on July 4, 2022 at 10:43 PM
  • Hanna
    VIP June 2019
    Hanna ·
    • Flag

    We had a child-free wedding but we let kids come to the rehearsal dinner and the farewell breakfast the next day. I think that child-free weddings are very common (if not the norm in my social circle), but child-free rehearsal dinners and breakfasts are less common. I've only been to one rehearsal dinner where kids were not included and it was at a michelin star restaurant with a full open bar. I suppose it depends on the vibe of your rehearsal dinner. If it's a super formal and fancy sit down dinner with a full open bar, then I can understand not wanting kids there. If it's a more casual affair, then I'd lean towards allowing kids. Keep in mind that your SIL's husband is already missing the wedding to babysit the kids.

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  • Monique
    Rockstar October 2022
    Monique ·
    • Flag
    Hi I completely understand what you are saying so does this mean that they are bring the kids and having her husband miss the wedding because he has to watch his kids in the hotel. I think that's fair we are having a age limit so no babies or toddlers and plus my venue charges for toddlers and babies because of breakage. Now not at the rehearsal dinner
    • Reply
  • Imani
    Rockstar July 2022
    Imani ·
    • Flag
    We’re also not having kids at the rehearsal dinner. Mainly because there are a total of 12 and that’s intermediate nieces and nephews. We thought it would be easier to have them skip the rehearsal dinner, but allow them to attend the wedding.
    • Reply
  • Michelle
    Rockstar August 2021
    Michelle ·
    • Flag

    I think it depends on the formality and intimacy of your rehearsal dinner. I do believe some spaces are not appropriate or safe for children. Another option is changing the rehearsal dinner to a welcome party and loosen up the guest list and itinerary.

    If you are wondering should it be all or nothing for your wedding weekend, to that I say you can mix. I invited my nieces and nephews (from out of town) to the welcome party, and our friends' children to our daytime Church ceremony. In the evening, I had an adults-only ballroom reception. Good luck with deciding.

    • Reply
  • EGD
    Expert September 2022
    EGD ·
    • Flag

    We're having a kid free wedding minus my cousins 7 year old who is our ring security. The only other child in question that would be invited is my FBIL and FSIL's one year old son. My FSIL is 100% find with us having a child free wedding, she wants to not be a mom at the wedding and her and FBIL are taking advantage of our hotel block which includes transportation so they can party like their not parents for the night lol.

    I did let her know he can come to the rehearsal dinner if she wants to bring him, but it's 100% up to her. Her son is truly the light of my life, but I'm not the one who has to take care of him (despite her handing him to me often and saying "here you're a mom now" at events lmao) so it all depends on if she finds one of her family members to baby sit two nights in a row. I do have a feeling she'll try to do everything in her power to not bring him to the rehearsal dinner, just so I can have my time to shine and my FMIL is impossible and forgets the world does not revolve around this one year old lol

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  • Michelle
    Rockstar December 2022
    Michelle ·
    • Flag
    Keep it consistent. If you are not having a (controversial) loophole for kids allowed at the wedding itself, there is no reason to open the rehearsal dinner to them. Mother in law can host people in her home another time and she can also arrange a family reunion picnic at another time that is not part of your wedding. Set and maintain boundaries with full support from fiancé now so you get practice in for after the wedding
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