An Aussie mum has spoken out about the shock of being "ghosted" by her friends, after not attending their wedding when she couldn't bring her infant daughter.
Mamamia writer Jane Parker says she and her husband "didn't know what to do" when they were invited to the wedding of their close friends, while she was pregnant with her daughter.
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"The invite was only for the two of us, obviously not 'plus unborn child', so we didn't know what their policy would be," she wrote.
Parker says she wrote to the couple, explaining the situation.
Thank you for the beautiful invitation to your wedding. We would love to both attend, however, we have a few concerns about leaving our new baby with someone else when she will only be a few weeks old. We don't want to assume your preferences, so would like to politely ask if we can bring her to your wedding before we respond to your invitation.
Parker says it "was a relief" when the couple said it was important they be there, as her husband was a groomsman. Therefore, they could bring the baby.
However, she wrote, two weeks before the wedding the groom asked her husband if they would be leaving their then four-month-old daughter with Parker's mother-in law.
"My husband explained that I wouldn't be ready to leave our newborn for the whole evening: I was breastfeeding, so I would only be able to attend if they were happy with her being there.
"The groom said that he was worried the other guests at the table sitting with me would be uncomfortable in the proximity of a very young infant. If I absolutely had to bring the baby, I could only bring her to the ceremony and would have to leave straight after."
Jane says she agreed only to attend the ceremony, but on the day itself changed her mind.
"The thought of driving 40 minutes alone to the wedding venue in stormy weather, battling the rain while carrying my newborn, and feeling like a social outcast having to leave as soon as the ceremony concluded was enough to send me into a fresh wave of teary desolation," she wrote.
"I just couldn't go. I asked my husband to delicately explain to our friends that I was not well enough, and to send my heartfelt apologies."
"Fast-forward three years to the present day, and we find ourselves ghosted by this couple. Literally cut from the Christmas card list," Jane wrote, adding that a friend told her it was because she didn't come to the ceremony.
Opinion on the story has been split, with some commenters saying the married couple were out of line, and other saying "their day, their rules".
"The fact that they first assured you that they would accommodate you, then decided the baby could only attend the ceremony was horrible," wrote one commenter. "They don't deserve your friendship. Move on and find some people with hearts and understanding soul."
"Here we go again. It's not about you. It doesn't matter what you want. It's not your day. The bride and groom decide if they want kids there or not. Everyone else gets to choose whether to come or not. It's just that simple," countered another.
Touch of Spice event planner Jacqui Spice told New Zealand Weddings that involving children in a wedding depends on their age and their reception span, but it can make the day even more special.
However she says there are some do's and don'ts about having a 'kid free' wedding.
"Make it clear on your invitation that kids aren't invited, but it's also courteous to give family and friends with children prior warning. Ring them to explain your position before they receive the invitation," she writes.
"[Don't] say it's it okay for some guests to bring kids and not others... or be too upset if some people can't make it because they are unable to arrange care for their kids."