Are "Dry Weddings" REALLY that bad? :-s

posted 3 years ago in Reception
  • poll: Dry wedding- a bad idea?
    Yes. I wouldn't enjoy myself at all without a drink or two. : (103 votes)
    53 %
    Meh. I don't mind either way; I can do my own drinking afterwards if I feel like. : (27 votes)
    14 %
    Not necessarily, but you HAVE to make up for it by providing LOTS of entertainment! : (28 votes)
    14 %
    Not necessarily, because drunken guests and bridal party members can ruin your day. : (16 votes)
    8 %
    No, and I had/ am having a dry wedding too (please explain why) : (20 votes)
    10 %
    Other (please specify in comments) : (2 votes)
    1 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    642 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

    @Asichka:  If you’re worried about how people will act after drinking, then don’t have it there. It’s your right to do as you please at your wedding as far as alcohol service. I wouldn’t lie about it though – just be honest and tell those who ask there will be no alcohol served.

    I’ve been to a few different dry weddings, and the atmosphere is definitely different from one where there is alcohol served – not better or worse, mind you, just different. If you’ve got some good music, then people will have fun regardless. I wouldn’t have alcohol served if it’s going to stress you out just because you think it will mean people will have more fun.

    Post # 4
    Member
    8705 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: December 2012

    I had a dry wedding and everyone had a great time. I didn’t feel the need to provide lots of entertainment — Most of the people invited were adults and can deal for a few hours.

     

    We didn’t have alcohol because we didn’t want people driving drunk.

    Post # 5
    Member
    7664 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

    I definitely wouldn’t lie. I would be very cross if someone lied to me about that. I’d much rather be told upfront. I wouldn’t be very happy about it, because I’m an adult and I am perfectly happy to take responsibility for my own drinking, thanks. I don’t need other adults to tell me otherwise. However, if someone was dead against having alcohol at their event then I would respect that.

    I would probably leave early, however, unless I was very close to the host and hostess. I don’t mix well with strangers without at least one drink, and I certainly don’t dance without one. I suppose I might stay for longer if the food was excellent and the entertainment fantastic. But that food would really have to be something…

    Post # 6
    Member
    5421 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2014

    @Asichka:  Personally I wouldn’t have one; it would not go over well in our social circle, plus I find the idea that you’re doing it to somehow ‘protect’ your guests from getting ‘too drunk’ faintly patronising; as grown adults, they should be able to handle themselves. I mean, will our guests get drunk? Yup! Will they get blind drunk and behave like morons? Nope. The worst we might get will be the odd broken glass/spilt drink (and TBF I have been known to drop glasses when completely sober), and some fun dancing. Oh, and we have this weird tradition of providing hats, so people will probably be prancing round in an odd collection of hats come midnight!

    Now I guess if your friends/family have a habit of getting blind drunk at social events and damaging property/driving home drunk etc I can see that a dry wedding might be a good idea. But honestly, if I were in that position, whether to serve alcohol or not would be the least of my issues; I’d probably be looking for different friends…

    Post # 7
    Member
    344 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    I’m having a dry wedding and have been to a few dry weddings. I do not  drink and neither does my FI along with most people in our family and inner circle. I do not think people need to drink to have fun. The atmosphere will of course be different but believe me most people around me know how to have fun without having a drink.

    Don’t worry too much about it people should respect that you have chosen not to serve alcohol, surely they are not that dependant on alcohol and can always go home and down a bottle of something if they want to lol!

    Post # 8
    Member
    537 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: May 2013

    I have been to two kinds of dry weddings: one where the bride and groom don’t drink for religious reasons and one where the couple didn’t want to spend the $$ on alcohol. I have no problem with the first kind, as the choice is representative of the couple’s life and values, and is not a slight to the guests.

    Based on your post, I would honestly be annoyed. Your guests are adults, they’re your family and closest friends, and you’re not their parent. Saying that you don’t trust them to drink responsibly and that they might “get drunk and spoil your day” sounds a little bridezilla. If your guests can’t be trusted to behave themselves at your wedding and respect your wishes on their own accord (or even after a conversation where you’ve voiced your concerns), then I’m not sure why you’ve invited them to your wedding at all. As a guest, if I knew your real reason and what you really thought of me (that I’m not able to make responsible decisions and that I need to be treated like a kid), I think I’d decline to participate. 

    Post # 9
    Member
    5421 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: August 2014

    @Rachel631:  +1, well said. Though I can dance without alcohol, but most people I know can’t, so, whether I can is irrelevant, I’m not going to dance on my own lol.

    Post # 10
    Hostess
    8680 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: October 2014

    For my family & friends, alchohol is a BIG deal. It wouldn’t fly to not have any alcohol at all. That doesn’t mean we have to fork out for an open bar.. a cash bar is perfectly acceptable if that’s the only option.

    I can totally understand people’s reasonings for not having alcohol, but I wouldn’t be happy about it. I also wouldn’t stay as long as I would at an open bar reception – standing around with nothing to do is quite boring to me.. and quite frankly, I can only “socialize” with family for so long.

    I don’t even drink that often at all! Maybe once a year, or on very special occasions, such as a wedding.

    Alcohol or not, your guests could very likely do all of those things you listed.. get into fights.. making inappropriate speeches, and dirty dances. If you guests WANT to do these things, they will. They are adults and will do what they want reguardless.

    Post # 11
    Member
    2581 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: October 2014 - UK

    @Rachel631:  +1

     

    Absolutely don’t lie about it! I can handle a dry wedding – although please don’t tell your guests it’s because you’re worried about drunken behaviour, because I’d find that kinda offensive, I’m a responsible adult and capable of not causing trouble when I’m drunk – but I’d be really cross if I got there expecting to be able to buy a drink and then not being able to.

    Post # 12
    Member
    7664 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

    @barbie86:  “I find the idea that you’re doing it to somehow ‘protect’ your guests from getting ‘too drunk’ faintly patronising; as grown adults, they should be able to handle themselves…. Now I guess if your friends/family have a habit of getting blind drunk at social events and damaging property/driving home drunk etc I can see that a dry wedding might be a good idea. But honestly, if I were in that position, whether to serve alcohol or not would be the least of my issues; I’d probably be looking for different friends…”

    @Hausfrau:  “Based on your post, I would honestly be annoyed. Your guests are adults, they’re your family and closest friends, and you’re not their parent. Saying that you don’t trust them to drink responsibly and that they might “get drunk and spoil your day” sounds a little bridezilla. If your guests can’t be trusted to behave themselves at your wedding and respect your wishes on their own accord (or even after a conversation where you’ve voiced your concerns), then I’m not sure why you’ve invited them to your wedding at all. As a guest, if I knew your real reason and what you really thought of me (that I’m not able to make responsible decisions and that I need to be treated like a kid), I think I’d decline to participate.”

    Yes, +1 to both of you… as I said… I would be very cross to be treated like this. The implication is that I cannot be trusted to care for myself, so the bride and groom must make decisions for me. Not cool. Now, if you were a Muslim, say, or your venue didn’t have a license, or you were a recovering alcoholic, that would be different. Subtext is everything. Likewise, I feel strongly that children should be invoted to weddings, but if my host said “sorry, space/money is limited, so could you leave kids at home” I would completely understand… if they said “we don’t like kids, so don’t bring them”, my reaction would be quite different. The underlying message behind the decision matters. Your guests will pick up on that.

    Post # 13
    Member
    785 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: March 2015

    I would be really annoyed. Especially if you told me there would be plenty, and I show up and theres nothing. I would probably leave. My FI and I are really shy and we hardly talk to people, let alone dance without a few drinks.

    A dry bar would not fly with my family and friends. Maybe a cash bar on FI’s side, but definitely not dry. While we are shy, and we’d be fine with a cash bar, because we probably wouldn’t get drunk at our own wedding, we want our guests to have a great time and host them as we would any other day, so open bar it is. Even if it’s costing more than food.

    Post # 14
    Member
    11717 posts
    Sugar Beekeeper
    • Wedding: November 1999

    It’s your decision to limit alcohol at a wedding, but don’t lie to your guests and tell them it will be there if you don’t plan on serving it.  Disappointment aside, I’d be livid if I thought the bride, who invited me to her wedding, actually lied to my face. 

    I’ll be honest – I wouldn’t have as much fun at a dry wedding, and I’d probably leave early.  I don’t let loose enough without a little liquid courage, and I just wouldn’t enjoy myself without a drink or two. I never get drunk to the point of embarrassment, and I definitely don’t drive after drinking, but I like to have a few drinks to get the fun side of me to come out. 

    Post # 15
    Member
    405 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: May 2013

    I have never been to a dry wedding and find the concept strange – unless the couple themselves were against alcohol for religious/cultural reasons.  I have been to 3 weddings when pregnant so not drinking and, as fun as they were, I have had much more fun when i can drink! If noone was drinking at all, i doubt there would be much of a celebratory atmosphere among my friends.

    Post # 16
    Member
    96 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: October 2015

    I am pregnant and have been to four weddings in the last two months and not had a drink. I have to say- you can have fun without alcohol and even survive socially challenging family. 😉 

    Having a dry wedding because you want people to not drink is totally within your rights- whatever the reason. I completely understand that you don’t want a night that might escalate with alcohol to involve fights etc. As you have said though, there are some problems with this plan- namely that the main offenders are likely to drink beforehand anyway or bring alcohol. I wouldn’t lie about alcohol being served – mostly because these are your friends and family who you care enough about to want at your wedding- I imagine that you do not want to start your newly married life with them angry with you for misleading them… the direct implication being that they couldn’t be trusted not to drink ( true but offensive). 

    Personally, it seems that those who are likely to be a problem will likely drink anyway and then you are not supplying alcohol to people who would have been fine and liked a drink! I would try and work out what proportion of the wedding guests are likely to fall into the problem category- if >40% I’d make it a dry wedding; less than this I would just organise servers to evict people who were too untidy and let it be known that this is what will happen. You can blame the reception venue if you want 🙂

    it is your and your fiancé’s day- people survived the first 18isn years of their lives without alcohol- one night is not going to kill them but they may choose not to come 🙂

    good luck sweetie x x 

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