Post # 1
First, I’ll explain that in Spanish culture (especially Dominican) there are appointed godparents. The godmother pays for the wedding dress(es), the cake, the couple’s rosary, helps plan the reception and might give extra money to help. The godfather pays for the alcohol, buys the couple’s bible and helps with the reception. both godparents also serve as witnesses and give guidance throughout the marriage.
So, yesterday after having appointed his father the godfather a month ago, my fiance called his father and gave him a list of the godfather’s wedding responsibilities, to which his dad said alright and to keep him posted on the progress.
Today, however, my fiance gets a call from his mom and tells me they aren’t too happy about this stuff. They aren’t Spanish so I understand that part, butt I feel disrespected that they wouldn’t just talk to me or let me know what they aren’t comfortable with.
I wouldn’t mind a $2 donation, if only to keep to the tradition, but now I just feel sad and like I’ve upset everyone when I’m just doing things the way they’re done in my culture.
I planned on saving to pay for every part of the wedding myself anyway, since his family is of the mind that the bride’s family pays for everything, but my parents aren’t involved with me.
What should I do?
Post # 3
Wow – you sounds like me!
My parents as well as all of my dad’s side of the family had padrinos that paid for various aspects of the wedding.
In our family, we didn’t have the typical padrino as in the godparents, but instead everyone pitched in – typically my grandmother would send out a list to each family and they would pick an item they wished to pay for; this is how my family did it for years.
Well, I had also saved for my wedding and had full intentions on paying for it myself w/ some financial help from my parents. Once again, my family doesn’t have the mindset that the brides family pays for the wedding, they believed in the tradition of padrinos. Well this was a concept that my in-laws couldn’t grasp. We NEVER asked them for a penny, and they became overly involved with the finances of the wedding and ultimately it ended in my FIL calling my dad to “inform him that the brides family is supposed to pay for the wedding!” So needless to say things got waaay out of control.
My advice to you, would be that it is not worth the pain and effort trying to explain padrinos. Your inlaws, like mine, are in the mindset that “the brides family should pay” and since you, like me, have the ability to afford your wedding, then do it. Graciously say that “if they wish to give a gift that you would be so grateful, but that you are an adult who has saved for her own wedding and it makes you proud to know that you can afford to pay for this wonderful occasion.” – this is basically what I said to mine 🙂
Post # 4
Oh and as a second note, we can’t be hypocritical – if we don’t believe in the tradition that the “brides family pays for everything” we can’t push the tradition of “padrinos pay”
good luck!! Wedding & finances are a tricky situation.
Post # 4
Sit down with them and tell them this:
“I wouldn’t mind a $2 donation, if only to keep to the tradition, but now I just feel sad and like I’ve upset everyone when I’m just doing things the way they’re done in my culture.
I planned on saving to pay for every part of the wedding myself anyway, since his family is of the mind that the bride’s family pays for everything, but my parents aren’t involved with me.”
You told the FFIL about this, but guys are oblivious to costs. Once your FMIL found out, she probably freaked because they don’t have the money to pay for all that. They likely don’t know that they don’t actually have to, it’s more of a symbolic thing. So tell them, and see what happens 🙂
Post # 5
Everything you said made me feel so much better = )
You’re so right, now it just bothers me that they wouldn’t even call me to tell me how they felt about it.
Nonetheless, I’m thankful that I can handle it on my own.
Thank you for your insight = ] Very grateful!!
Post # 6
I don’t know if it makes any sense to even talk to them about it since when his mother called she spoke to him. Noone spoke one word to me about it so I don’t feel like it’s in my place to start a conversation noone intended for me to be a part of. They just didn’t want to deal with it and wanted to get rid of the problem quickly by telling my fiance and not me. I have no choice but to just turn the other cheek and let them be, as much as it upsets me.
Post # 7
“Aren’t too happy about this stuff” – Totally disrespectful and too bad for them. If they are say, Irish, and ask you to wear a silly hat and drink green beer on St. Paddy’s day, will you say no?
If only for the sake of their son, they should try to understand. Hugs.
Post # 8
@KeenNeoGeo: Glad I could help! It’s good to know that my crazy experience dealing with this mess could help another, haha!
Post # 9
They could buy your bible and a bottle of champagne just to prove that your culture is respected not to mention their FDIL is being disrespected right now. Like you said, even a $2 donation. I just shake my head at people like that because I get it. In my culture, we eat some, let’s say, strange things. Father in law said to my face “that’s gross” and he wasn’t joking.
Post # 10
Maybe they’re just uncomfortable telling you in person because they don’t want to disrespect your culture?
I agree with PP that even just a simple token like a bible as a gift could be a nice guesture.
I’m sorry to hear that this has come up though, maybe you could have them over for dinner, make some tradition food and introduce them to a few “traditions”. Maybe help make them more comfortable with your culture?
Post # 11
I don’t think you can force your traditions on other people, especially when money is involved. In my culture weddings are split 50-50 between the bride and groom’s side and if one side refuses to help it means that they do not support the marriage. Well, FI is not from the same culture I am so neither I nor my family ever expected them to follow OUR traditions, because it is not their tradition.
I think you’re being too one sided in this whole thing. Perhaps you didn’t fully explain to them what this tradion entails at the outset before they were appointed.
Post # 12
oh man. leave two men to be the chain of communication between two women, and i see a recipe for disaster, ha ha.
my guess is that your fiance way oversimplified the message and so did his dad, and so the version his mom ended up hearing was along the lines of, “our son says KeenNeoGeo has a list of things we have to pay for at the wedding. I told him to let her work that out and she’ll give us a list of what she comes up with” instead of what you really meant, and your FMIL probably starting imagining the most dramatic, outlandish requests ever and freaking out about what exactly it is that you expect from her. While your FFIL probably figured, eh, whatever we can do — it’s a lot more likely than your FMIL has heard crazy stories of friends going bankrupt and taking out second mortgages to pay for their kids’ weddings, so her mind went to the crazy place.
In the same way that they found out about all this through your fiance, I wouldn’t take it personally that they responded through him rather than contacting you directly. I think there’s a weird thing that happens between most people who are about to become in-laws where they REALLY don’t want their official family relationship to get off on a bad note — I’m pretty sure that’s not personal.
I would try to talk to them about this personally — in person if possible or over the phone otherwise — just to end the miscommunications and straighten things out. I agree with PPs about emphasizing that this tradition is a formality and you can find a way to observe the tradition without asking them for a large financial commitment, but I would also try not to drive the conversation beyond that. They should have time to discuss the matter privately, as a couple, and decide what they’re most comfortable doing. But I think if you explain that you aren’t expecting anything, it would just mean a lot if they could find a symbolic way to nod to this tradition — well, they may surprise you. Let us know how it goes!
Post # 13
I’m not familiar with your culture or traditions, and I ahd a question. Wouldn’t it make sense for the godmother and godfather to come from your side of the family, since it’s their culture and everything? I know you said that your parents aren’t too involved, but what about the rest of your family?
It sounds to me like your FI might not of done a great job of explaining this custom to his dad, just asking him and handing him a list isn’t exactly the same as explaining the tradition and such. In general I don’t think traditions should be ignored, but it gets kinda sticky when tradition means that other people have to give you money.
Post # 14
I don’t want to talk to them about it anymore, because they obviously don’t want to talk to me about it. I wish they had given me a chance to explain it better if the case really was that my fiance and his father misunderstood.
I don’t expect his family to pay for even half, even though the majority of people invited are his family, but I do expect that my traditions not be disrespected.
I would’ve been fine with a “Hey keenneogeo, I appreciate the consideration for the role, but I don’t know if we can handle what you’re asking for”. So that I could’ve either said okay, or better explained.
Post # 15
They probably just felt more comfortable talking to him abotu what upset them, without hurting your feelings by being direct. After all he’s their son .. and their son asked them to be responsible for this.
I’m not dominican so i’m not sure I understand alot of your culture. That said, shouldn’t you pick people drom your side? Do you just tell the people they are now your godparents and to fork over the cash? Or do you have dinner and invite them and ask them and talk to them about things?