Post # 1
We are having a really intimate wedding of around 40 people. We are not inviting a lot of family to keep it so small. However my fiance wants a particular friend to be his groomsmen, but this friend has a long term girlfriend whom we have not met. I mean we aren’t even inviting family, it seems so silly to invite his long term girlfriend and not them. But do we have to because it is protocol, especially if he is a groomsmen? We are actually contemplating not asking him to be a groomsmen because of this girlfriend issue :/ not because of the money to pay for her seat, because of the principal that only our very very very nearest and dearest will be there, and we don’t even know her.
What do you guys think? I’m sorry if my question is terribly rude.
Post # 3
@BrookeBQ: I dont think it’s a rude question. I think you will get answers on both sides of the fence for this one. For me, I would say bite it and just invite him +1 but I know many others will say the opposite.
Do what you feel is best bc this is one of those situations where there isnt really a “right” answer given the full situation.
Post # 4
Because she’s a long-time girlfriend and obviously important to him, I would invite her. It’d be pretty rude to ask her boyfriend to be a groomsmen, but she’d have to stay home. It’d be one thing if they’d only been together for a few months that’d be one thing, but it sounds like this is longer?
Post # 5
If they’re living together or have been together for over a year I say invite her. He’s an important part of your guy’s life, and she’s an important part of his. It’s rude to not invite her. As far as having to cut family, do you really want all of your cousins there anyways? We’re having a small wedding of 45-60 people but we’re still able to invite all of our immediate family and a few good friends and their guests.
Post # 6
@PacificMrs: They don’t live together and it isn’t Facebook official, so I don’t really know what to make of how serious they are. They are college students. They’ve been together around a year. Perhaps I should just try to get to know this girl and make her our friend.
I’m just worried I’ll look back on my wedding pictures and say, “Who is that girl amongst all of my family in these photos? I never saw her again…” and then pictures will go up on Facebook and my cousins will say “Who is she and why is she there when we weren’t invited?” My excuse has been “It’s only closest family and friends” and having her there kind of ruins that all.
Thanks for your input everyone, I’ll be reading it!
Post # 7
@BrookeBQ: See that’s different. When you said long term gf, I figured it was serious and they were like on the verge of getting engaged, that whole schpeel. That’d be different.
IE, one of FI’s stand in groomsmen (he’s not REALLY have gms…don’t ask, it’s weird) has this gf who frankly, well, I hate. They’ve been together 8 years and it’s funny because the GM doesn’t really like her either. Again, don’t ask, haha. ANYWAY, we’re still inviting her just because we don’t want to be rude. But they live together and such and also have a daughter together.
I would talk to the groomsmen and ask how he would feel, honestly. It seems like about the only way to really go about this situation? Good luck honey!
PS, isn’t it sad we guage relationships by Facebook now? LOL!
Post # 8
We’re having the same discussion here. Inviting the long term partner is as important as the person who is close to FI in my opinion. There was never any question that she wouldn’t be invited.
Post # 9
@PacificMrs: LOL I felt so bad saying the Facebook official thing, but I really feel like it is an indicator! This isn’t a very serious guy, he’s really goofy and frat-y and I don’t think he is thinking marriage. My partner is so “manly”, it feels odd to ask him to talk to his friend about how serious he is with his gf, but I think I have to! I just see this guy as a big partier and I don’t think he needs his gf there to have a good time, but they have been together around a year, so that qualifies as long term. Sorry, I should have specified they are definitely not getting engaged, ha ha! 🙂
Thanks, I actually JUST found out about his girlfriend (this guy never talks about her…) so I’ll do some research into whether they are dating for casual convenience or are really serious…
Post # 10
Well it is over a year to your wedding so why not get to know her? If she is the partner of your FI’s friend who is close enough to be a groomsmen I don’t understand why you wouldn’t get to know her. She is part of your FI’s close friends life and friends are supposed to share their lives.
Post # 11
I’m not sure what the right call is, but please don’t base it on whether they are “FB official”. I have been married for over a year and am still not linked to my husband in FB.
Post # 12
Etiquette requires that you invite the significant others of guests who are married, engaged, or living together (because etiquette presumes couples who are living together are secretly married.)
From what you’ve written, the couple does not live together and is not engaged. Therefore, you do not have a social obligation to invite the girlfriend of your potential groomsman.
Post # 13
The groomsman should get a +1. He’s an honored guest since he has a place in the bridal party. Treat him like one.
Post # 14
- Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House
Since your wedding is still over a year out, I’d say that the best thing to do would be to take the next year and get to know this girl. Then, she will be your friend, too, and he will be a groomsman and everyone will be happy
Post # 15
We are having a small wedding too. We had a big dinner with all the groomsmen when we were visiting CA and got to meet all the girlfriends. Then we facebooked them and now we’re getting to know them from afar. But it makes it more comfortable knowing it’s a group of people we DO know. You still have time to get to know her and figure out where you stand.
Post # 16
@BrookeBQ: If this girlfriend is a “long term girlfriend” in the sense of being a girl, with whom he goes to dinners and theater regularly and takes out dancing and to the cinema, without being in a long-term socially-recognized commitment such as marriage or engagement — nor in a socially acknowledged common-law marriage whether legally recognized or not; nor in asocially acknowledged exclusive long-term committed non-cohabiting relationship equivalent to a de-facto betrothal — then no, formal etiquette does not in fact require that you invite the lady.
But I have noticed that the quaint usage of “girlfriend” has gone by the board, so I am guessing that this long term girlfriend is in fact an equivalent-to-spouse, whom etiquette does require you to invite if you invite her “boyfriend”. But as you are trying to keep your wedding celebration small, you have a perfectly acceptable solution that you have already considered: just do not in fact include the boyfriend, either. After all, if you haven’t ever met his nearest and dearest love despite the fact that he has loved her long term, he can hardly be a regular member of your intimate social circle either, can he?