Post # 1
I never post on message boards, but I need impartial advice from people who have no stake in the matter. I’ve tried to be as fair as possible.
My dream, go to city hall with our immediate families, grandparents, Maid/Matron of Honor and Bridesmaid or Best Man and then to dinner at our favorite restaurant. Afterwards, drinks at our favorite lounge. This will involve approximately 20 people. My fiancé is torn, he wants the big wedding and hoopla but likes the low cost and low stress. His mother wants a big wedding with all her friends and my parents are hurt we won’t invite the whole family. The promise of a party later is not appealing to anyone, including me.
We have compromised and are having a max of 200 guests. It will be more like a family BBQ. My family is huge, easily over 150 people that I see and talk to on a regular basis. Fi family is small, 36 aunts uncles first cousins.
After a lot of compromise the final guest break down came to
My parents: 100 family 16 friends
His parents: 36 family 30 friends
Us: 18 friends
For his family and my mom’s family the cut off was simple: aunts, uncles, grandparents, first cousins and their families (i.e. children). For my Dad’s family, there is no clean cut way to organize the guests list. In the end, I went by long standing family precedence and just invited what we call the “core.” The seven families whom make up the heart of my Dad’s family whose relationships range from grandparents to my fifth cousins. Fi mother is furious and I can understand. It can be very difficult to understand the dynamic of my Dad’s family without growing up in it. Why is my dad’s cousin automatically included no questions asked but hers is not?
Do I cave and let her invite more people? I couldn’t invite a lot of family I would have loved to have there and feel terrible about it. I want to keep the limit at 200, anymore and its too overwhelming for me to enjoy myself.
Post # 3
oh my… that is a toughy. My thought is, that is a decision that you and your Fiance must determine exactly who is important and who is not. You guys should know each other’s family well enough to know who you talk to all the time and who the family is close to. And that should be up to your Fiance to respectfully speak to his mother about the different dynamics in the other’s family. However, the question is, who is paying for this wedding, if his mom is paying, then the list should be equal (they must have input). If your parents or you are, then she should not be upset as to the guest list.
Post # 4
Well, if your parents get 116 and his only get 66, I can see why his mom might be upset. That is a big difference. It does depend on who is paying to some extent- but i think it is kind of unbalanced. Does Fi’s mom have specific people she wants to invote that are important in FI’s life? Or is she just upset about the numbers without having like, say 6 more specific people in mind? If she has only a few more people I would relent. If she is thinking it needs to be half and half just on priniple- then no.
Post # 5
Unless his parents are paying, I don’t think they should get more guests. You’ve already compromised a lot, and it doesn’t sound to me like you’re doing anything wrong. Honestly, I wouldn’t have even told Future Mother-In-Law that some of the relatives on your dad’s side aren’t technically “close”.
Post # 6
Sorry for the late update, thank you for your advice
My fiance and I are paying for the wedding entirely on our own. His mother wants to invite more extended family, many of whom I have never met or only met once. When she thought that the cut off for all family was the same (aunts, uncles, cousins and families) she was fine with the number discepency. She found out how my more exteneded family is coming by overhearing a conversation between me and fiance who didn’t realized one of my “uncles” was actually my third cousin. I understand the additional guests are important people in her life and care about my fiance, even if they don’t see him that often. However, I don’t know where to draw the line over who to invite, I do not want the guest list to spiral out of control. To avoid problems like this was a large reason city hall was so appealing to me.