(Closed) Guest list issues- looong

posted 8 years ago in Reception
Post # 3
Member
1137 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2009

First, welcome to weddingbee! Second, I’m sorry you’re feeling this way!  It will be okay!  There are a couple of things that I wanted to say after reading your post:

1) Budget determines everything, so it should always be set before anything else is decided.  IF your FILs are going to contribute, they need to tell you before you can move forward.  This is you FI’s job to figure out–he needs to call them and let them know that the two of you are going to be moving forward with the wedding planning with your budget of $X, but since they had mentioned “helping” he wanted to see if they had an amount in mind.  No pressure, but you need to have an idea so you can proceed.  If they don’t give you a number, you proceed with JUST your original budget and what the two of you can afford on your own.

2) In order to do a budget wedding (and we’ve all got budgets!), you have to make a list of priorities.  If you and your FI decide the biggest priority is the guest list, and being able to invite a lot of people, then other things will have to go.  For instance, a more basic venue, a less popular month, heavy hors d’oeuvres instead of dinner, cash bar, just beer and wine, no videographer, etc etc.  There are LOTS of ways to do a wedding on a small budget, and you can get a lot of those ideas right here!  But, we all do this.  If your biggest priority was a certain venue, you would move everything else around to accommodate that (fewer guests, different date, etc.).

3) Finally, if you do end up doing this without any help from FI’s parents, they don’t get to complain or comment about who is and is not invited.  Period.

Good luck, congrats on your wedding, and happy planning!

Post # 4
Hostess
18646 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

Welcome to weddingbee!

I agree with what was said before that you need to determine the budget before anything.  You can’t go ahead and plan anything without knowing exactly how much you are going to have to spend.  He should talk to his parents about this.  And if they don’t contribute, they don’t have any right to complain.

Post # 5
Member
248 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2010

So it seems like the two of you disagree about the size of the wedding.  But going beyond size, what appeals to you about the dinner party-type wedding?  Is it spending time with each person, not having to dance, great food, or simply the total budget?  Ask your FI the same question – what does he want out of the experience?  That might help you compromise, and you can feel it’s more about you if the most important parts of your vision are incorporated. 

As far as his parents, ask them if there is one element they want to be in charge of.  That might be easier for them than setting a dollar amount.  And yes, I say if your FI agrees, start planning the small dinner party.  If his parents are really unhappy, they’ll say so and you can tell them you’ll change your plans when you have a better idea of how the budget is going to pan out. 

Post # 6
Member
6661 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2010

Yup, you need your budget before you do anything. I mean, after you buy your dress, his suit, your rings, photographer (if you get one), hair/makeup, honeymoon, marriage license, officiant, etc. the rest of your budgeted $5-$7K probably won’t go far, even for a dinner party. So if FI’s family wants you to have something big, they either need to plan it for you or give you a budget to plan with.

Post # 7
Member
1566 posts
Bumble bee

I think before any more contact with his parents, you and FI need to be on the same page. I think for many people, the wedding is your first big test as an engaged couple – can you talk rationally through your priorities? Can you compromise so that you are both happy? can you listen to each other and then present a united front to families? 

So since you two clearly have very different ideas of what the wedding should be like, you should discuss it until you can meet in the middle. Some important issues to discuss are:

– what is the max number of guests you can agree on, regardless of budget. My FI’s family is much bigger than mine, and his parents wanted to invite friends as well. I knew I wouldn’t be comfortable with a huge event where his guests outnumbered mine 3 to 1, though, so we agreed on guest numbers ahead of time. 

– are you comfortable with FILs having control of the wedding by helping pay? You’ll be able to get a nicer/larger wedding, but you’ll have to give up some autonomy. The fact that they won’t give you a budget is not a good sign. If they “work that way”, then maybe you don’t want to work with them! I think having them help with a particular expense (flowers, catering, etc) might be a good compromise. or maybe pay for the wedding yourself and have them pay for their extra guests only. 

– which elements of the wedding are most important to him and to you. 

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