When you're starting to iron out your guest list and are deciding on take off the list, there are a few things you and your partner will have to make a decision on — one being are children allowed at your wedding. With this decision comes a few questions: do you have friends who are expecting a child right around your wedding that will need childcare? Do you want to invite just babies to the wedding (and no small children who are mobile)? Or, do you want to invite children regardless of their ages?
The child guest list decision is a difficult one. Some brides think it's more practical and budget-friendly to say "no" to all children, but not letting your friends bring their babies may mean that your friends won't be able to come.
When you are making this decision, the first thing you should do is see if you can create some kind of environment for your babies to stay in throughout the night. Perhaps you can turn an extra bridal suite at the venue into a playroom — where a professional babysitter is hired to watch the little ones for the night. If the venue isn't equipped for that, another option is to invite the parents with their babies and let them know that just coming to the ceremony or reception is fine and both are not required. Giving them the option to come and go as needed may have many moms and dads on your guest list feeling less stressed about attending the wedding with a new baby.
If you really don't want any children at your wedding, you can make that decision and pass it along to your friends in advance (who then will make the decision about whether or not they'd like to come or leave their baby at home). Either way you decide, as the bride — it's ultimately your decision, so just make sure that you tell your friends beforehand so there is no confusion.
Jen Glantz is a "Professional Bridesmaid" and the founder of Bridesmaid for Hire. She's the author of All My Friends Are Engaged and frequently wears old bridesmaid dresses to the grocery store and on first dates.