Post # 1
Hey fellow Bees,
A challenge here. Some background. When my FMIL learned we would be getting married out of state, the first words out of her mouth were, "But none of my friends will come!" When we were working on the guest list about 6 months ago, FMIL submitted names of about 5 or 6 couples of her friends, several of whom I had met once, for about 5 minutes. She asked for more of her friends on the guest list than my own parents. I gave in and let her invite these people and soon after declared the guest list to be closed. We sent out StDs two weeks ago and are starting putting together invitations this weekend.
Fast forward to today, I get an email from FMIL stating some of her friends asked when our wedding was and that she "had" to tell them. Now she wants to invite them because she is afraid when she has a party, other guests will talk about the wedding in front of them. She did offer to pay for them. Given that no names were used when referring to these friends, I suspect they fall into the category of "people I have never met." My goal was to keep the guest list small and invite close friends, NOT people I have never met. I definitely don’t want to add these people to the list at this point in time. Am I being unreasonable?
Post # 3
I dont think you are being unreasonable but I wouldnt want to create hostility so early on with the MIL. Can your fiance talk to her? She is offering to pay so if that is a concern, at least you arent paying for people you dont know. Do you think they will even come since she said her friends wouldnt come if your wedding was out of state?
Post # 4
I think you are focusing a little too much on the fact that you haven’t met these people. I’m sure most people have guests that they’ve never met because you are merging two familes and two groups of friends.
How many guests are you planning to have? We invited 210, my parents choose 70, his parents choose 70 and FH and I choose 70, end of story.
If you are having a small wedding, I don’t think you are being unreasonable but it really depends on the total number of guests for us to know if her extra friends are pushing the limits.
Post # 5
Wow, are my MIL and your FMIL best friends? You’re not the only bride who has had a challenging FMIL when it comes to guest list issues. I know mine was a real gem. She also tried to add people at the last minute, because "they’ve heard about the wedding" (which meant that she had told them).
For us, it wasn’t a matter of paying for people, it was a matter of keeping the wedding at the size that WE wanted. We were able to book a venue that gave us a hard-line cut-off for how many people we could invite. This way, we didn’t have room to add extra people, even if MIL offered to pay for them. What’s your guest list number? Can you use a limit as an excuse like we did?
If you’ve already sent out STDs, then it sounds like your FMIL had a chance to submit names for the guest list and that time has past. If I were in your situation, I’d have your fiance explain to her that you’d love to be able to invite everyone, but since you’ve already sent out StDs, your guest list has been finalized.
I suppose you also have the option of "B-listing" these people, and inviting them if her other friends decide not to attend the wedding. We didn’t do this, but I know a lot of people do.
Post # 6
I think that it’s your wedding and although you don’t want to create hostitlity- just inviting people bc you might hurt someone else’s (that you don’t know’s) feelings should not be a reason for you to "have" to invite them, regardless if she is willing to pay or not.
You want to spend your day with people that you are close with- not who are just there out of aquaintances.
On the other hand, you’re lucky she offered to pay- my FMIL has a list of people and kept sending lists of people to add through the mail– some of which i might not have added– oops (but really i don’t feel bad)– most of the people she invited/tried to invite my boy and I don’t or hardly don’t know– AND she’s not paying for anything!!
Post # 7
Funny how this seems to be a common problem with FMILs. FI and I are paying for the wedding ourselves and we’ve made it very clear that we are inviting only people we know and want. FMIL who is not paying a dime keeps trying to pull guilt trips to have us invite her friends but FI is firm on not letting her. GO FI GO! I do think he’s being a bit harsh but there is nothing worst than having guests at your wedding who you’ve never met.
I agree with the previous posters who suggest using your venue’s cap number (if there is one) as the reason why she cannot add more guests. If nothing else works, have your FI speak with her. Good luck.
Post # 8
We have had a similar problem with my FMIL. She doesn’t seem to think it is "fair" I have a large family and subsequently take up a larger portion of the guest list and wanted to make up for it by inviting her neighbors and friends from HS. Luckily my FI stood up to her on his own. We debated making a "B list" but then realized it was too stressful to have to pick who would be most important to invite from that list if it came down to it and set our # at 150 set the list and told everyone the list is closed no exceptions.
Post # 9
Mrs Starfish- i think it’s the FMILs duty to make it hard for us- I’m not trying to be harsh- but why is it that our own mothers are usually the coolest people ever to walk the earth (not to say that some FMIls arent..)but thats generally the case.
It totally makes sense that you should naturally have more people on your list- My situation- more annoying as it seems is just the opposite- FIs family is much smaller, 75 percent of their family is divorced, and all relatives are much much older- but somehow she keeps wanting to invite people we don’t even know and my family is bigger and we only invited those closest to us- I mean..who wants to have to fake hug and thank people that they have never met, people that are your FMILs step father’s brothers daughter— it gets a little ridiculous after a while- and not helping pay for anything makes it even worse!
Post # 10
You arent being unreasonable. My FMIL is pulling the same sh*t (my blood is BOILING right now – every time i think of this it boils) and I snapped at her. I dont care about the friction, she is being out of line. SHE INVITED OVER 75 PEOPLE! And mind you MY dad is paying for the wedding!
It sonds like she cant say no. Her friends shouldnt be offended if they werent invited to a wedding of someone they dont even know. Id put my foot down gently and say that you both prefer the guest list small so there isnt room. Done and done
Post # 11
I understand where all of you are coming from. However, being the SIL recently at my brother’s wedding I got a view from the other side. My parents invited more people then anyone else. We have to remember that our families are proud of us and in a sense this is their big day too. Maybe we can’t understand that now because we haven’t had our turn in their shoes. Hopefully one day each of us will have children getting married and we’ll understand then.
Just keep in mind that they are just as excited about your wedding as you are. That they want to share with their friends in this joyous occasion just as you want to share it with your friends.
Believe me I want small and intimate wedding just like the rest of you and I’ve asked that we try to keep the numbers to 200 people. But honestly, if my parents or his parents want to invite more people and want to help pay for those people, then I don’t have a problem. Especially if it means making everyone (including the In Laws) Happy!
Post # 12
Haha i’m having the same problem! I think there must be an FMILbee type place somewhere where they all just conspire. Sigh.
We’re probably going to B-list. My FMIL doesn’t know it yet, but the thing is, she has a HUGE family and then adding her friends (that she has never bothered to introduce to us) plus "barely" friends is just NOT going to fly. Considering she’s trying to break up this wedding and saying some pretty nasty things about me right now, I’d say my FMIL is just lucky she’s getting to come.
I hope you find a solution that works for you. good luck!
Post # 13
Hmm, this is tough because she’s offering to pay. But honestly, I would say, “I’m really sorry, and as much as I would love to invite everyone, we just can’t because of space limitations. At this time, the guest list has to be closed, as the STD’s have already gone out.” If you don’t put your foot down, she might keep asking up until the day of the wedding to add more people. This should be something your fiance talks to her about.
Just remember that more people not only means more meals (which she’ll cover), but also more invitations, centerpieces (if you have to add more tables), cake, favors, programs/menu cards, etc. It’s not just the cost of food. It’s everything. Adding more people is often not worth it if you want a small wedding anyway.