(Closed) Fiancee’s Parent’s and Photography

posted 10 years ago in Family
Post # 3
Member
11 posts
Newbee

Hey reilabrid,

It may just be some nitpicking?! Are the inlaws always this way, or since you’ve been engaged, or started planning your wedding?  I ask because you can sort of see if there’s a pattern or more to come of this in the future, or just nervousness about the wedding on their part? etc.,

If you tell inlaws directly or sometimes indirectly that you don’t need their opinions, FH might get a bit unnerved no?  Maybe the best thing is whenever these situations come up just tell them "thanks for your advice, I’ll look into that." It’s your wedding, and you should have things your way – if no one else agrees, doesn’t really matter.  If people aren’t happy, and are offering money you don’t need, then they can make a choice and take back their offer – no harm done there.

May not have helped, but did not want to read and run.  Hope it works out.

Post # 4
Member
161 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

I get really defensive when people question my decisions and what not too..I hate it.  But it is a bad habit that I want to quit (easier said then done though), I just do it automatically, assuming they think my decision was bad.  Anyways, for where the wedding is concerned, I am trying to keep the line of communication open, allowing people like my parents and fiance’s parents to put in their two cents. It is an important day for them too.  You should have the loudest voice in the final decisions, but it doesn’t hurt to give their suggestions/opinions/random comments/etc. a thought.  Don’t cut them off unless they are overly demanding!  Anyways, I’m sure your inlaws and fiance will appreciate that you care about their opinions.  Plus, perhaps they’re asking to see whether you’re getting the better deal or they might have something or someone else in mind that is more stupendous.  I guess what I am trying to say is, if in the end you want your own photogs, then tell them that you appreciate their inputs and you love them for wanting to provide them with the photography, but you already found one that you love and is comfortable with.  Good luck!

Post # 5
Member
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

Well, look at it this way.  The worst case scenario is you end up paying for the photographer yourself and getting the photographer you want.  That’s not so bad!  The best case scenario is that maybe just maybe you get the photographer you want, and his parents pay.  Even better right?  Since you’ve made your decision already and you can pay for it yourself, you’re in the power seat here.  Be confident that you have made a good decision and don’t worry if they disagree with you.  Answer their questions without defensiveness or judgement – don’t assume that they think you’ve picked a bad photographer (even if they do, it’s probably not a good idea to approach the situation with that attitude.) 

I would suggest actually answering their questions with enthusiasm and excitement.  If they see how excited you are about the decision you’ve made, it will make it more awkward for them to tell you not to use that photographer.  Maybe they’ll offer to pay.   Maybe they might also want to cover the cost of a particular package and you want something else; if so maybe they could partially cover the cost of the photographer and you could cover the rest.  If they offer to pay for a different photographer only, just say something like, "I appreciate the offer, but I do think that this photographer is the right choice for us so I am happy to cover the cost myself." If it gets any more heated than that and they start arguing with you, it is not your job to argue with them.  Your fiance should be defending you in this and should manage any arguments that come up.  They are his parents after all.

Post # 6
Member
22 posts
Newbee

It is possible they are just interested and not checking up on you.  You and your FI (because if he asks for it, so have you) have asked them to participate monetarily – involving them in other ways is a good gesture.  Be enthusiastic about your choice and share the website of blog of your photog with them. And then be firm in that you will need the deposit check by x date.  

But in all truth, anytime you ask someone to pay for something, they do get some say in how it is spent. It is the cold hard truth of wedding planning.  If you don’t want anyone’s input, then don’t ask for their money.  If they said "we would like to pay for photography" that could mean a 1500 investment, or a 5k one – depending on your choice.  Chances are they want to just be involved and they want to know what their money is going to buy.  
In all honesty your post sounds a bit whiney and it sounds like you are jumping to the defensive.  They want their names on the invitations – what parent doesn’t?  This is a big day for them as well, they are proud of their children, and proubaly proud to welcome you to the family.  Balancing family relationships is a huge part of wedding planning and one that is necessary to master b/c these people aren’t going anywhere. Perhaps it is time you and your FI sat down and decided how you want to handle these kinds of situations – as a team. Good luck!

Post # 7
Member
78 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: February 2008

I agree that if they are contributing, generally that entitles them to some input.  I understand you didn’t ask for their money (possibly for this reason), but it’s too late.  Maybe your fiance feels they should contribute and wouldn’t have without him asking. 

I would try the excited approach. Something along the lines of "Oh, I did so much research to find someone who we really clicked with and took the kind of photographs we would want to have forever as a reminder of our wedding day. Once I found ____, I searched bridal communities for input and carefully reviewed the contract.  I only received good feedback and I am so excited for the amazing photos ____ is going to take!" (Assuming, of course, that’s true).

If they come back with "Uncle Joe’s girlfriend’s nephew is a photographer and we would prefer you use him."  Just diplomatically say that you appreciate the suggestion, but you both really had your heart set on _____ and that you understand if they would rather help out with something else.  Then, if they want to help with nothing, they’re off the hook.

BTW, I don’t think it sounds whiney (on its face) that you don’t see a need to put their names on the invite.  I think the names on the invite generally are to identify who’s hosting/ contributing significantly to the costs.  I suppose it could just be who the parents are, depending on the wording, but we didn’t feel the need to add parents names to the invites either. 

It sounds like there may be some tension there, so just try to take a deep breath before saying anything and always make sure your fiance is on the same page as you before anything is said or done.  Good luck.

Post # 8
Member
161 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

OY – I have this problem, too. My future in-laws ask 1001 questions about wedding stuff, and the worst part is, they ask the same questions over and over again! This leads me to believe that they didn’t like the answer the first 3 times, so it was their way of disapproving. FI says, “oh, they’re just forgetful”. Hmmm…

I am a planner. I love to plan. However, I am not very good at dealing with people who try to change my plan. This is certainly something I should work on, I have no delusions about that, but with the wedding it seems even harder.

Anyway, I think you should at least pretend to listen and entertain their ideas. Then explain why you chose your photographer, and why it is such an important choice for YOU. Just because someone has *graciously* offered to pay for something does not mean that it gives them control. If that is their understanding, I would politely refuse their offer. Best of luck, dear!

Post # 10
Member
337 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2008

It’s a hard process, getting everyone’s input, talking about ideas and compromising during wedding planning.  Weddings bring out a lot of emotions and people seem to get really emotional over things that would seem silly for any other reason (my mom, for example, has gotten genuinely upset over the idea of renting coloured tablecloths.  Green vs. white tablecloths would not normally be an emotionally-charged decision!)  It’s a wedding and everyone has feelings and expectations about it, and sometimes rather than talking about the real issues, people latch onto a "topic" like tablecloths and get really emotional over a detail when it’s really something deeper going on. 

It sounds to me like you may be experiencing a bit of that yourself.  You’re talkin about a specific photographer, (and this is not to diminish the importance of a photographer because I think it is important to be really happy and comfortable with your photographer, more so than many other vendors) but perhaps your real concern is losing control over the wedding plans?  I totally understand this concern, it’s something I also have to deal with, not with my in-laws actually but with my own parents.  It’s hard to keep everyone happy and still be happy yourself.

There IS an element of compromise and patience.  You do presumably want a positive relationship with your in-laws, and from your description it sounds like asking a lot of questions might just be part of your FFIL’s personality.  Try not to take it too personally or assume he’s second-guessing you.  Maybe if you aren’t on the defensive about it, it might be a good way to open up lines of communication with your in-laws and give you something to talk about, you know?  I guess what I’m saying is, try not to be resentful of them because you could end up winning the battle (i.e. getting the photographer that you want) but losing the war (having a good relationship with them for years to come.)

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