Post # 1
Ok, so before I tell yall the problem, I’ll give yall the scenario of my engagement:
I am 22 and on the 6 year plan in school in Mississippi and we are having the wedding in Atlanta, GA. My fiance is a 2Lt in the army and will be doing ranger school for 3 months starting June and then deploying a month later; therefore, we are waiting until he gets back from Iraq and after I graduate to have the wedding. Yay for June 11, 2011! While he is gone, I will be finishing up my degree and planning our wedding without him AND in different states. Yes, it’s 2 years and that seems like forever for planning a wedding but when you have so much going on, it’s a blink and I need help!
I knew I wanted a wedding planner before we were engaged because I knew I would be in 2 different states and I wanted the process to be as enjoyable and stress-free as possible. I would NEVER leave it to my mom for 2 reasons: we have different mindsets and I would never put that responsibility on her. I found a great wedding planner and at a very reasonable price and all I need is daddy’s check for a deposit (fyi dad is paying for the wedding). He’s the type where you have to explain every little detail and that’s fine, completely understandable. At this point in my life, I’ve learned the process and perfected it.
We sit down and I explain why I need one and he doesn’t understand the financial reasons but is still willing to let me do it, which is fine but then we get into an agrument about planning the wedding. He thinks I’m just being lazy because planning a wedding is a piece of cake! He said its so simple that he should let him do it, all it is is ordering some flowers, booking a dj and we already have my gown and the venues so we’re good. I tried every which way to explain to him that it’s not easy and stressful and having a planner can be a really good thing for our situation but he just kept saying planning a wedding is a piece of cake. I got to the point where I couldn’t even think straight and couldn’t give him the details of planning and I ended looking like a spoiled brat who just wanted to spend money.
Has anyone had a situation like this? What are the details with planning, from big to small? Somebody help, I hate this and it’s really upseting me! I don’t want him to think I’m just wasting his money and I want him to understand!
Sorry this is so long!
Post # 3
Can you have a meeting with your Dad & your potential Planner? Or you could find one of the REALLY detailed "to do" lists and show it to him. Boys (& men) don’t realize that this is the ONE day where you want EVERYTHING to be perfect and that perfection is stressful and tiring and HARD.
Our wedding is very laid back and we’re not overly "detail oriented" people so planning for me has been EASY so far (knock on wood) BUT I am planning the wedding pretty much myself (FI helps but isn’t AS into it as I am), I’m in the state where we’re having the ceremony/reception and our families are 100% behind us with whatever we want to do. Also, we both work M-F 9-5 and have no additional "activities" (School, etc) so we have the time to plan. In your case I’d say you are 100% RIGHT! A planner/coordinator is in your best interests! Your FI is away, you’re super busy AND you’re in a different state than your event… You are a POSTER CHILD for Planners! 🙂 (I mean that in the best way possible.)
Hopefully sitting him down with a planner and a to do list will be the way to show him what is involved! I couldn’t even BEGIN to list our "big to small" details list… It’s different for everyone!
Also… has your Mom tried to talk to him? You didn’t mention her in your post so I don’t know her "role" in any of this.I found a really detailed to do list on marthastewartweddings.com. I’m sure there are more detailed ones (the Knot perhaps?). Good luck!!!!!
Also… give your FI a big hug and THANKS from me for serving in the military!
Post # 4
Hmmm… it definitely sounds like he’s going to have to see it to believe it. Maybe you could make a list of everything there is to be done, along with a time-line, and then sit down with him and go over it in detail. Do you have somebody else you could get on your side? A mother or sister or other trusted female who understands that weddings don’t just happen?
It might also help to explain to him what your school work/schedule entails. Let him see just how busy you are and that you’re desire to have a wedding planner is out of foresight and responsibility rather than laziness.
Post # 5
Um, I planned all of it basically. And it wasn’t as stressful as I thought it would be. Yes, I have a lot to do. Yes, I’m always busy. I dont have time to just watch TV and be a bum. BUT, i’m not going crazy either. My biggest stressful moment BY FAR was my dad’s ultimatum about our Father-Daughter song but now that’s blown over and i’m just trucking along, no problem!!!! My FI helped with the venue and my mom helped execute my ideas–bm dresses, flowers, etc. I could have easily ordered them from a florist if i wanted to spend the money but i didn’t. But all the planning is a la me. My FI was a 2LT and spent 15 months in Iraq. I was also finishing up my degree at the time. I’m basially a year ahead of your life, lol. It wasn’t so bad, by the way. Oh, and my FI’s deployment wasn’t as bad as I was expecting it to be. PM me if you ever want some advice on how to handle.I was a mess for 2 weeks, melancholy/bummed for 2 more, then kind of coasted with a few "aw this sucks" moments along the way.
I also picked a venue that provided food, linens, etc. It was a big package, they had the DJ, recommended a pastor, cake baker, etc. I passed on the cake (it sucked so bad) and their expensive unnecessary decoration package, so i made my own. yes, that was hard, but I could have just shelled out the extra $300 and saved myself hours and hours had i wanted to.
I would send lists to your dad. Excel sheets and the like. You should not let him plan it for you. That sucks! however, I don’t think a planner was a necessary expense. Lots of venues include Day of Coordinators and as long as you know kind of what you want, you can figure things out and order stuff. You have lots of time, honestly, and I personally, after doing eveyrthing i’ve done (which is kind of like your situation except i had less time), I think a planner is unnecessary. But if you think you need one, find a way to budget it out to justify the money to your dad. Cut back on cake, flowers, etc.
Post # 6
I can see both sides. I planned my wedding. (I would have chosen planned by myself with almost no help, but that wasn’t an option.) However I didn’t have to worry about finishing up school and doing it OOT. I did have an OOT Fi though.) And I do believe there is more to it than your dad is seeing. Coordinating colors or themes. Invitations, favors., seating guests…
But your dad has a point, that biggest part is getting the major vendors lined up. Perhaps he is concerned about paying for a coordinator. Is he concerned that he’s paying the coordinator based on length of time? (Ie. he’s paying her for two years of mostly sitting around, when she’ll get the vendors lined up in the matter of a month or two. Then she’ll work her tail off just before the wedding. And there’s a good 1 1/2 + years of him paying her for nothing.) Maybe explainging to him how she charges will help. Or maybe he’ll feel better hiring someone closer to the wedding, say 6 months before.
I’m not sure either of you would really want him planning the wedding. Can you compromise on researching some vendors together? Or have him do the leg work and you decide? Do you trust him to not just hire people without making sure you’re comfortable with them?
Post # 7
I planned my wedding long distance, and my mom helped me. It was not terrible. However, some people are more prone to freak out under stress (I was a cool little cucumber right up until 5 minutes before I walked down the aisle). If you really feel like you need a planner, one way to sell it to your dad might be to point out that a planner usually has connections in the wedding industry and can actually save you money on lots of things.
Post # 8
Definitely get a wedding checklist (I like Martha Stewart Weddings) and send it to your dad. Start tying numbers to some of the big ticket items on the list. Maybe make a few phone calls yourself to get an idea of what you can expect. I like the idea above about having a meeting with your potential planner and your dad. That way she can sell her services to him directly and illustrate how she can minimize costs and make your lives easier. She can maybe point out which things on the list she will handle, where she’ll need your input, etc.
My sister was in grad school last year while planning her wedding. She was super stressed out with all she had to do. Maybe it would help to share with dad your typical school schedule and what time you have left over to commit to wedding planning. I’ve found I have to make many calls during the day to reach vendors, which can be tricky with balancing work. It’s also not easy planning from several states away b/c you have to organize meetings for the short periods you are at home –which means less time to spend with friends and family visiting. It’s all a delicate balance and you will need help from someone!
Post # 9
I’m also planning long-distance without a planner while being a fellow. There have been moments of stress, but we’re having a long engagement (15 months), so it seemed like the tasks got spread out pretty well.
I couldn’t participate in the poll, because fiance and I did it ourselves without a lot of help from others.
You know yourself best, but if it comes down to it, I don’t think it would be the worst thing to DIY.
Good luck and let us know what happens!
Post # 10
Honestly, I can see your dad’s point– wedding planning can definitely be as easy and cake-ish as you make it.
I’m planning my Maryland wedding from England, with no real planning help from my FI or parents (except a ‘yes, sweetie, that looks nice’ when I email over what I’ve chosen)– and you know what? I’m having so much fun! Not every decision has to be difficult. For example, say you need tablecloths and napkins. Yes, you could get quotes from five area vendors, and take trips to Atlanta to visit each showroom to look through their sample books, and then layer them all together with your other table elements, such as chargers and votives and blah blah blah, to make sure it’s ‘just perfect,’ OR you can say ‘hey, i really want to save myself thirty-nine hours, so I think I’ll just go with these gorgeous sage silk pintuck ones.’ There is a simple way through each booking decision.
That being said, if you don’t find this sort of stuff ‘fun,’ like many of us do, planners can be an excellent way to push off some of the stress. You might want to point out the money-saving features of planners to your dad– just show him how your planner can save money on some of your items, through her vendor connections. Planners are often able to secure trade-only pricing, which could positively affect your bottom line, and basically pay for herself! Good luck!
Post # 11
I just wanted to add, that since the majority of the votes on your poll indicate people have planned their own wedding, I don’t want you feeling like having a coordinator is wrong. There are a lot of variables to each situation. I’m afraid you are going to walk away feeling like you have to plan it yourself, even if it makes you completely miserable.
Post # 12
I can see how, if you’re trying to arrange things in another state you can’t easily visit on a regular basis you may want a planner to help out.
Does your venue offer day-of services? That might be a great compromise… let them worry about whether the flowers, cake, etc. get delivered. Will the venue take care of decor? Putting our favors, etc.
It really comes down to how organised you are – it can be done, but if you feel you need help maybe make a list of all the things that need to get done (the timeline idea above was great!) and present it to dad… in the end you may not need a full-on 4-figure planning service, but a little help might be waranted! Good luck! 🙂
Post # 13
- Wedding: October 2009 - Ceremony: The Kraine Theatre, Reception: Midtown Loft & Terrace
I think it would be fun to plan most of it yourself and hire someone for the day or or maybe even the month of. That way, you’re compromising with your dad, but you’re not terribly stressed about the last minute details, too.
Having two years is a big benefit. You can spread the work out and it won’t be quite so overwhelming. A planner is a luxury and you often lose a lot of creative control (just because the ideas aren’t mostly your own!).
Post # 14
I planned our MN wedding from CA. We were engaged for almost two years. We only visited MN a few times before the wedding. So, yes it can be done, but my mom did a lot of the running and calling for us, since she lives where the wedding was. If you don’t trust your mom, then you will probably need a wedding planner. I could not have done it with out my mom. So, if your dad holds his ground and doesn’t agree with to pay for a planner, then you need to entrust someone to help you out.
Post # 15
Yikes. I’m lucky on this one – my sister is basically acting as my planner. But I know people who have absolutely needed to have a planner, and it sounds like it might be a good idea in your case. My advice? Ask my dad what he thinks. Seriously. Go to http://poorweddingdad.blogspot.com. He is writing a blog about being a FOB (although he would never know what that means) and might be able to give you some advice on what to do or how to convince your dad this is a good thing. 🙂 Good luck!
Post # 16
I’m doing most of the planning myself, with help from family. But we’ve got a tiny budget (trying to come in between $3000-$5000) and I’m unemployed. Being unemployed, I’ve got lots of time, just not money! Also, we live in a rural area so my choices are very limited in regards to venues, dj’s, etc.