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Wedding Child Attendants: Do Children Attend the Wedding Rehearsal Dinner?

Q.

I have two flower girls, both age four. One of their fathers (my uncle) is also our wedding officiant. My fiance's mother does not want to invite them to the wedding rehearsal dinner because they are so young and alcohol will be served. My parents think they should be invited because they are part of the wedding party. I can understand both points of view, but they are my cousins, and I don't know what we would do with them after the wedding rehearsal, especially if their parents wanted to stay for the dinner. Does my fiance's mother get to decide because she's paying for the rehearsal dinner, or is it proper to invite the little girls because they are part of the wedding party?

A.

This is a tough question for several reasons. The first is that there's no strict etiquette -- whether child attendants are invited to the rehearsal dinner is usually up to you (you, meaning the couple and the party's hosts, often the groom's parents).

In this case, it's a bit more complicated. It does seem practical to have the girls at the dinner, since they will be at the rehearsal, and it's polite to invite their parents to the dinner (especially since they are family, and, in your uncle's case, one of the key players). You may need to do a bit more digging to find out what the issue really is. After all, if alcohol is being served at the rehearsal dinner, it's probably also being served at the reception, right? And are the girls invited to that? If yes, then the alcohol probably isn't the issue.

Because it's kind of a touchy subject (and since his parents are the ones hosting the party), you should probably talk things out with your fiance first. Once the two of you are sure of your footing, ask him to gently bring it up with his parents to see if he can feel out what the real problem is and get a final verdict on the issue -- hopefully, it’s one that will work for all parties.

See More: Your Bridal Party , Kids at Weddings