Post # 1
I’ll try to make this as short as possible –
We’ve been together 5 years. Living together for 4. In my head, we are married already and saw getting engaged and having a wedding as a new chapter in our lives and a fun party. His mom has overstepped boundaries AND had problems with everything so far .. the engagement party (wants to invite people who aren’t invited to wedding .. ignores everything i say from food to decor) .. the rehearsal dinner (she complained that said i want my dad to BBQ – which i don’t and never said) .. the wedding guest list (she keeps adding people on, who i see less than once a year – and no they are not family .. and AGAIN doesn’t listen to a word i say about this). Besides the FMIL issue, the whole thing seems sort of pointless and expensive to me. My budget has expanded to over $20k. (not the money i HAVE, the money ill need). And I just cannot justify spending that much on ONE DAY! I’m not knocking anyone who does, or who wants to .. I’m just wondering if I can smile about it knowing how much I put out for it .. for one day .. with people I didnt especially want there .. I want a marriage, a comfortable life, a house, some breathing room financially.
I started out wanting a relaxed, laid back, family oriented affair BBQ feeling day and i feel like all these expectations from others are suffocating me. People keep telling me “you’ll make the money back” and “it will all be worth it” and “don’t listen to anyone”. MAYBE we will make the money back .. maybe. Worth it how? and It’s easier said than done, to ignore people criticizing you.
What I am now thinking/dreaming of is a Hawaiian Elopement and a big party to celebrate the marriage – (more like an engagement party – open bar, dj, food, etc just not a “wedding”), with only family and friends when we get back, and show them lots of pictures of our vows and vacation.
Has anyone done this? Does it make sense? I’m not sure if i’m emotional, or tired (i work full time and go to school 4 nights a week), or delusional about this. It’s just how i feel and need advice from unbiased people!
PS – a part of me feels like I should have a wedding – I’m 1 of 5 kids .. 2 are gay, 1 isn’t my dads daughter, and the last is 14 so that will be a long time) so my dad can have that whole father of the bride day too. Also, my fiance was married before and that’s all anyone talked about for our first 2 years of dating and a small part of me wants to erase that from peoples minds. And lastly, I don’t want to give up something for me (the wedding I started out wanting) bc of someone else – FMIL – All WRONG reasons, i know – just being honest
Post # 3
An elopement, followed by an at home reception that you have described, sounds lovely. I would warn you, however, that hosting a big party afterwards can be just as expensive as a wedding itself – you’ll still need food, tables, alcohol, DJ, etc.
Post # 4
I second what futuremrsfitz18 said. eloping wouldn’t really save you anything if you’re going to have a big party, and what’s to stop your mother from ignoring what you want again for that party?
I say just screw what she wants and start over with what you want and leave her out of it. why the hell is she getting so much say in this, especially if you’re paying for it?
Post # 5
@futuremrsfitz18: Thank you for getting back to me! I’ve been having severe anxiety today.
Thank you again for saying it sounds lovely. Just wanted I wanted to hear 🙂
I agree that it can be costly on its own .. But what I was imagining can be up to $7,000 or so .. at the most .. at a restaurant. My best friend just had a beautiful engagement party at a catering hall/restaurant – with an open bar, DJ, 3 courses, cake, lots of room for mingling and dancing, etc. for $5,000. I would be eliminating a bridal party and all that comes with it, elaborate centerpieces, flowers, a rehearsal dinner, worry about who is getting where and when and how (my original venue is about 2.5 hours from my house and I do tend to worry about others and felt bad for putting anyone out), not to mention transportation to and from the venue to peoples hotels.
and I’m 26 .. so I’m at the age where every other week is a wedding, shower, engagement party, etc etc etc. I see all the eye rolling, the rude comments, the “how could she ____” and Honestly, I’m not all about that! On top of that, I feel like everyone says oh it flew by .. i would elope if i could do it again. And the ones who don’t say that, I feel like I can barely remember their wedding. What they sunk hundreds of dollars into, hundreds of hours. I’m not trying to be rude or funny – I mean it. So if it only matters to you and your groom, why not just have it be you two?
I’m just soothing myself here lol! I know you only brought up the price so ignore the second part
Post # 6
@strawbs: I completely agree with the theory of leaving her out of things, and I would say the same thing to someone who wrote what I wrote – but you’ve never met her (haha! but really).
Never in my life have I met someone so nosy, interfering, selfish, and so on .. She makes it her business to ask 1,048,305 questions about everything. Then twists my words to my fiance.
For instance .. we waited months to tell her where the reception was .. because she is so overwhelming. She told 20 people THE DAY SHE FOUND OUT! People were calling me and saying they can’t wait. But, should we not tell his mother anything? She ruins every part of it.
For the record, we picked our venue in october because we wanted to see it around the time our wedding would be. Got engaged in December – told her we were engaged and where it was, and then she told everyone before we could.
Like I said before, it’s easier said than done to leave her out of things. She offered to pay for the engagement party. Which i appreciated – but still do not agree with inviting those who can’t be invited to the wedding. (200 maximum, and we are past that).
Post # 7
I think two things – one, you need to be stern if you’re paying for the wedding and set boundaries with your FMIL. If she’s paying, then you need to compromise (doesn’t sound like that’s the case though). If you want to do the wedding at home, have your FI say something. She’s going to be in your life the rest of your life and the wedding will pass, but she will still be there, so it’s important to work something out. Your FI could talk to her and say “it’s my second marriage, we want something smaller, please follow our wishes,” etc. even if that’s not fully the case.
However, Hawaii sounds amazing! Maybe you could just keep that to family and your parents and his could come? Then you would have that special moment with your dad and not completely shut out your FMIL either. I work at Chapel of the Flowers in Las Vegas and we constantly hear stories of couples planning the large, grand wedding and it getting out of control and realizing that’s not what they want so they come here instead. Often times, they’ll have the at-home reception – your BBQ sounds wonderful- watch the video, etc. or we have internet broadcasting so people can watch from home as it happens. You could also still invite a smaller set of people and even less would likely come, so still have the wedding, not need the at-home reception, and all would work out and then you have your honeymoon built in, too.
Basically, I think if that’s what you want than you are totally okay with doing so. It’s your day after all!
Post # 8
@AimeeS: Thank you for all of your ideas! Those are really sweet (our parents coming to Hawaii, a live feed, etc)
You’re right about being stern – she really is just so disarming .. she is like a tornado, if that makes sense. It rattles me! I try but she won’t ever listen .. just keeps on trucking as if I didn’t speak. She is way worse towards him – cries, yells, guilts him, fights. He tells her the truth and “this is how it’s going to go” and she goes to me the next day all sweet – oh all i wanted is this or that. He has told her at least a dozen times that it will be smaller – and she has meltdowns. I am fully aware this isn’t normal by the way. That is just her, always has been, and my thoughts are/were that how can one day be worth all of this hassle?
I slept on it, and spoke with a few friends. I’m still on the fence. My plan is to have a sit down with her and my fiance. No manipulating from her like when we speak separately, later saying one of us said something we didn’t. After that I will probably get an idea of how the rest of this will go. I have no qualms about cancelling it if that’s what it takes to have a harmonious life with my in-laws! After all, getting married is for a marriage, not a wedding. (to me).