Alcohol + In-law's Extended family= horrifying & embarrassing, what to do?!

posted 2 years ago in Reception
Post # 2
4760 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Drink tickets?  Give like 6 drink tickets to people who can drink responsibly.  That way they won’t be giving their drinks away since they have a limited ammount of tickets.  

But if it’s just the 2 ladies, I’d just make sure to tell the catering staff not to give them alcohol.  They should be used to this stuff and are usually pretty good about it.  Your friends and fam should also respect your wishe and not give the ladies alcohol.  Why would GMs care to get and aunt and grandma drunk?

Post # 3
122 posts
Blushing bee

You could have a drink of alcohol or two served with dinner for everyone and then have the cash bar if they want to drink more.

Post # 4
2670 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 1996

Atalanta:  This made me laugh SO HARD, not because I think it’s bad advice or anything (!!) but because if I had six drinks I would be unable to walk or say anything coherent.

Post # 5
442 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

I always think it’s hilarious that people think a cash bar will curb drinking. Have you been to an actual bar? If people want to get drunk, they will pay for it. 

That said, hire good bartenders and tell them they have your permission to cut people off if they’ve had to much. Or have a dry wedding. But don’t have a cash bar, or drink tickets. You could do beer and wine, but again, if people want to get drunk they will.

Post # 6
1926 posts
Buzzing bee

ugh this is tough! I agree that a cash bar probably won’t help the situ. It seems like these relatives will want og et drunkr egardless if they have to pay or not. You could limit when the bar is open? Have cocktail hour bar service, wine with dinner and have the bar either close after dinner or be open only an hour or hour and half after dinner?

Post # 7
579 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

My CILs wedding had an open bar for cocktail hour, it was closed during speeches, and reopened when dinner was being served. Since you can’t skip alcohol altogether (can you??), I think this might be the best option. 

Also, I’m finding that a lot of my friends will run interference. (I have bad family issues, as in, I do not speak with anyone in my entire family-both sides) A few friends know, and have let me know that if there’s a scene, I will not be aware in anyway, and they’ll handle it. Do you have some family you can trust to help with this?

Post # 8
7920 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

I would have an open bar for cocktail hour then switch to wine/beer for the rest of the night. No cash bar- it’s poor ettiquette and it won’t deter anyway. 

I would also- 

– have your FI (**NOT YOU**) have a talk with his side about how embarrassed he was. That his new inlaws are conservative and he will be mortified if they repeat the same behavior and make a terrible impression. 

-tell the planner who potential troublemakers are and who is to have no mic access and let her talk to bartenders about not overserving

and last but not least: after you do the above LET IT GO! Worrying is not going to help even one teeny bit. Ever. What happens will happen, you can only do so much. So don’t fixate on this.

Post # 9
127 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: Tarp Chapel

I say only do a limited beer and wine bar. Also have them cut off the bar at an early time, I have an uncle who gets crazy so I am only opening the bar up for two hours of the wedding.

Post # 10
2501 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

AlieElizabethBennett:  Have your open bar, don’t let anyone give them the mic (seriously, if they stand up to say anything tell everyone to NOT gve them the mic and let them stand

Don’t let 2 people dictate your wedding. Also I would be pissed about watered down wine too, so just let grandma have one or two and if she drinks to the point where she can’t walk tell you MIL to keep her in line or escort her home. Not your problem

We have people with some issues in our family and apparently one of them got so drunk they could not walk- I had no idea til the next day, I don’t really care and I promise you unless they fall over into the cake you won’t know whats going on.

As for the aunt just tell one of the groomsmen to stop being polite and she will get the hint if she hits on them lol


Post # 11
10902 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2009

These types of issues, along with many others, are why I would not be comfortable hosting an event that featured a bar with alcoholic beverages. There just is no polite manner in which to attempt to monitor or police one’s guests, and alcohol truly is a controlled dangerous substance. While I am not opposed to all alcohol on all occasions, I personally never want to be responsible for providing a flow of alcoholic beverages to others. At our wedding, our “open” bar featured unlimited iced tea, sodas, and juices. The ony alcohol present involved the choice of a single glass of champagne (or sparkling cider) for our champagne toast, and that occured after our guests has been served heavy hors d’oeuvres and prior to our plated dinner.

Post # 12
183 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 10, 2016

I’m planning to have a dry wedding for this reason (although it’s my family that’s the problem ). It’s perfectly legit to decide not to have alcohol at your wedding! If anyone asks or complains, just tell them it was a money issue and leave it at that. Remember, it’s YOUR wedding!

Leave a comment

Sent weekly. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Find Amazing Vendors