It’s the prime wedding season in the US and without a doubt, dozens or even hundreds of readers have attended a wedding in which tiny humans are compelled to participate in wedding ceremonies as ringbearers and flower girls.
I really dislike tiny ringbearers and flower girls.
Don’t get me wrong. I adore children. I have three of my own and can’t wait for grandchildren. But when it comes to a wedding ceremony, tiny children under the age of 5 should not be involved at all. Zip. Nada. Keep them out of the ceremony.
1. In my experiences, children under 5 are rarely asked if they want this “honor”. They are nearly always compelled to participate. Even if they were asked, they have no idea what they are agreeing to do because their limited life experiences doesn’t include marching down an aisle in front of hundreds of people, many whom look like strangers. I have witnessed adults have panic attacks just before processing yet for some reason people think a toddler can handle this same pressure.
2. Children are not props. In 25 years of wedding planning, I can’t recall a single instance where a flower girl or ringbearer was given any input into what they were wearing. Their “costume” was provided for them and they are expected to wear it. As alleged members of the wedding party, they are afforded the least respect as to whether they want to do this and what they will wear. When brides treat adult attendants in this manner, we refer to them as Bridezillas. If you had a “mini me” toddler flower girl, shame on you. You used her as a prop to flatter your ego.
Years ago one of my brides wanted to include two twin 18-month nieces in her processional. They were to be wheeled into the ceremony in a decorated wagon. “Who is being served by you doing this?”, I asked the bride. “I doubt, at 18 months old, that the girls are going to find this fun so it’s not serving them. Their mother is the Matron of Honor and she may be very distracted if they see her and cry for her so she’s not going to be served by this. Your guests? I think they’ll survive not having that visual memory.” My bride decided to not include the babies since it was really not in the babies’ or mother’s best interest to attempt this. The wedding went off flawless but more importantly, the babies and mom were stress-free and happy.
3. I know there are those of you reading this at the moment and feeling your indignation rise like mercury in a Florida thermometer because you had tiny humans in your wedding. I’m sure there are many, many Youtube videos of adorable flower girls and ringbearers who loved every minute of the limelight. They “steal the show”. Well, therein lies the problem. A wedding ceremony is not a “show” and toddler attendants can completely distract the emphasis of the ceremony from solemn vow making to entertaining guests with a version of “Wedding Romper Room”.
In the video below, the toddler Maia is acting predictably for a toddler and she’s not happy about the whole situation. Her older brother clearly is old enough to know what he’s getting into and he’s enjoying himself. Maia should have never been involved in the wedding, however, because she’s simply too young to understand what she is doing or the significance of the event.
In the first part of this next video, the “baby” (and yes, he is referred to that by someone) should never have been expected to walk down the aisle like this. Goodness gracious, he looks adorable in that tiny tuxedo but sending him alone down that aisle was a recipe for failure. At the very least, his father or mother should have processed with him. In the second half, the ringbearer was clearly not well rehearsed as to what was happening with the flower girl’s petals.
I can translate the baby gibberish this infant is spewing. “Why? Why? Why did you put me in this stiff dress and this headache inducing headband? I was just a prop in your grandiose affair! Stupid Bridezilla!”
You tell them, Maggie!