Post # 1
I’ve decided this is the best place to get wedding advice. I’m planning my wedding for 8-31-2013 outside of Chicago, and I’m starting to reconsider the whole thing. I had always wanted to go to Vegas and have a teeny-tiny guest list of about 10 people. Long story short – fiance’s parents threw a tantrum. They’ve never really cared for me, and they insisted on having a grand event so their entire fextended family tree can attend. Keep in mind – guest list started around 300 people (!!!!) BUT – they aren’t willing to chip in more than X amount. (This amount isn’t even remotely close to cover what they have in mind.) My mom and her husband are chipping in, but my mom lot her job a couple of years ago and works part-time, and I don’t want to push her into things I know she might not be able to afford.
Anyways – after weeks of explaining to them that WE CAN’T AFFORD THIS – we finally found a small venue in our price range and told them to chop their list. We told them we could push it to 100 people. They gave me their list – and it’s maxed out their 50 guests, leaving my fiance no room to invite any friends. I bring this to their attention – and they snap at me blabbing about “we can’t cut out family blah blah blah.” Some of these people my fiance doesn’t even communicate with – some are just neighbors!!
I’ve been calculating the budget non-stop, and I don’t feel comfortable where we are at. I want the wedding to be no more than 80 people. HOW on earth do I convince them that this is what we need to do? I’m afriad if they don’t get what they want, they won’t give us ANY money, leaving us with the inability to have anything (except Vegas – which is what I want, but they’ll freak out yet again.)
Sigh.. I don’t know what else to do. My fiance tries to talk to them, but they have this ridiculous sense of entitlement where they feel they are always right. I’m sure if they liked me they would be willing to chip in more money, so I can’t help but take it personally. Please help!!! I’m one wedding-argument shy of canceling everything 🙁
Post # 3
What about if you keep the Vegas idea and let them throw a at-home-reception following the wedding. It could be as many people as they want and they can have it be just as they want. And you’ll still have your perfect wedding.
Post # 4
This already seems like a disaster zone – they can’t dictate who can and cannot attend if they aren’t paying – I say don’t accept their money and have the wedding you want!
Post # 5
@SuperKate: this. It sounds as though they’re taking the fun out of your planning and thats shocking. You and your FI will need to present a united front here. Maybe have your small wedding and then have a party to celebrate? Get a cake and wear your dress again. If you tell a venue it’s a party rather than a wedding it won’t cost you as much. But I’d stick to the maximum you’re comfortable with for that and tell them they will need to cover the cost of any additional people.
Son’t back down this is your day, they’ve had their day, this is yours. Good luck
Post # 7
argh this is tough… Weddings unfortunately are usually associated with really high expectations, and it’s so stressful when people have different views on how things should be done.
My viewpoint is that if you and your fiance are footing the bill, you two make the guest list. End of story. Take your FMIL’s list, your family list, and your friend list and go through them with your FI. Create the guest list to your liking and *poof* problem solved! 🙂
Seriously though, if FMIL continues to have a fit, tell her that you have a non-negotiable budget and you are inviting those you can afford to. If she wants to pay for the extra people she wants, then fine. Otherwise, sorry!
Post # 8
I would tell them that they can only invite X number of people – and that if they give you more names, you’ll make the cuts yourself, and they may not like your choices. That should help them get the list down to a reasonable number.
But I agree with other bees; this is none of their business, and they don’t get to force you into having a huge event.
Post # 9
I’m gonna see how they react to cutting down the list. I want to tell them that if they want extra people, then they have to pay for it…but I don’t know how to approach that without them thinking I’m a snob (which they do.) I do love my venue and my mom is so excited about the wedding that I know it would break her heart if we had to cancel due to finances..so I’m gonna try whatever it takes to make this happen. But if they aren’t willing to work with me, I don’t really have a choice? What’s the polite way to go about this, but also making it clear that they have to compromise?
Has anyone been in this situation? Did it work out in the end, or did your in-laws always resent you for it?
Post # 10
I hate to say this… But it’s only going to get worse the further you are down the planning pipeline!
I’m having the BIG, White wedding for my FILs…
My fiance’s twin brother eloped and didn’t invite anyone a couple years ago and they whole family was super hurt. So, I was in a pickle. I wanted to have a small destination wedding and then a reception/party later. But, he kinda ruined it for us.
It turns out that my FILs didn’t even understand what was involved in a wedding. So, here I have to explain everything to them down to what the rehearsal dinner is and that the NEED to be there, even if they aren’t paying for it.
Luckily, my parents could afford the BIG, white wedding… So, that’s not an issue for me.
I would have your fiance fight this battle. What does he want? Mine wanted the wedding, until a few months ago when he realized how much of a pain this has been the whole time and his family doesn’t even appreciate it. They haven’t even sent the RSVP card back yet and we’ve gotten 1/4 of the back!
I feel for ya! But, my advice is do what you want and have your fiance fight the battle for you.
Post # 11
Oh wow, that’s tough! I say to crunch the numbers and present them with the budget so they can see just EXACTLY how expensive a wedding will be, per person, if they have it their way. Calculate it all down–catering, venue rental, chair rental, alcohol, centerpieces for additional tables, favors, whatever else you can think of. So say that comes to $150 pp. When they see just how much it costs to have a big wedding, they may come to their senses. I hope! I think many people just do not realize how expensive these things get. Hopefully if they see how expensive it’ll be, it’ll shock them into coming around.
Then tell them they MUST limit their portion of the guestlist, so that you guys have room to invite your own friends. If they refuse, then tell them that they can have more guests if they are willing to kick in money for them. If they refuse that, then tell them you are so sorry that you can’t have the wedding in the size they want. Just make it a clear cut matter of finances and do not engage in back and forth negotiating or arguing with these people. They sound really unpleasant to deal with.
If they still refuse, then you can use your final nuclear option of the Vegas wedding. If they freak and throw a tantrum, too bad. Let fiance deal with them–they are his parents and he should be used to handling them.
Post # 12
@mspartridge: absolutely this.
Post # 13
Thank goodness for this board – – you guys are so helpful!!! Thank you for the support 😀
Post # 14
I was in the same situation, we ended up eloing. I was very tired of pleasing everyone else.
Post # 15
This is a tough situation. But you guys are adults and you should assert yourself as such. First thing you Fi should take the lead on dealing with his parents not you, things they forgive him for are the very same things they will demonize you for. Sit down make the choices and tell them this is how it is. If what you guys really want is a Vegas elopement then DO IT!
You guys have allowed them to bully and manipulate you. You also need to sit down with your Fi and work out the best way of him dealing with his parents. Then stand firm by your choices, and he needs to make clear that their are BOTH of your choices so you don’t take the heat with it. Since they are being unreasonable I personally would just end the drama by having the wedding I truly wanted. Then ignore the inlaws and if and when they make comments have a firm statement along the lines of “We already make our choices, so this is how it’s going to be”.
By the way this is setting a horrible track for your married life, they need to learn that they not going to get what they want by acting childish and throwing fits. Good luck!
Post # 16
FI and I are paying for our wedding ourselves so WE made the guest list. We didn’t ask for any parents’ input.