Post # 1
I actually thought I’d be one of those lucky girls to get a cool MIL that I can talk to/hang with… NOT despise. 🙂 Let me say that I don’t hate her… I really do love her and she really did a great job of raising her son into a kind, wonderful man.
That said, this woman is a little nutso about money. She and her husband are well off, and have two homes and several cars. They are also both insanely cheap. That’s not such a bad thing (in this economy!) but its starting to grate on my nerves. If we go out to eat with her, it has to be a place that she has a coupon/gift card for… nowhere else. My FI won’t let me offer to pay for it, because that might make her uncomfortable. So instead, we eat where she picks, “share” entrees, only drink ice water and piss off the waitress with all the requests for “free stuff”.
Now she’s spreading these tendencies to my wedding. Last week she mailed me a newspaper article where a local couple actually “assigned” their guests certain items for the wedding to pay for, in lieu of gifts. Seriously??! She’s also informed me that we don’t “really need” a rehearsal dinner. Naturally, that’s the only part the groom’s parents typically pay for.
Does anyone else think this is normal? My FI keeps saying she’s just trying to be helpful.
Post # 3
- Wedding: September 2009 - City Hall
Sounds like they didn’t get wealthy by throwing money around (i.e. getting restaurant deals, etc). Honestly your FILs sound like Mr. MJ and I. Got the house, the car, the nice stuff… always eat out with coupons, share entrees, order water, etc.Our priority is a nice home and a solid future – not frivilously throwing money at stuff that only lasts an hour or a day or a week.
I think you can use her help to your advantage.
Doesn’t mean you have to TAKE her advice, (seriously? Guests paying for the wedding? ugh) but a frugal eye can be very advantageous when wedding planning. ‘Cause everything is SO expensive! Maybe you can assign her a task to keep an eye out for the best deals on. Like paper source coupons, or something.Make sure she knows you appreciate her trying to make the wedding budget-friendly. You will appreciate the money she saves you (maybe you can use it on your honeymoon? )
As far as the rehearsal dinner, sounds like the two of you need to talk about priorities. Trust me: do it now, before the conflict goes any further. Maybe she can find a restaurant that’ll do a group discount. Or maybe you can do it at your home or a more relaxed setting, like in your in’laws back yard or something. This would be more cost-friendly and still fun for your guests. Just some thoughts.
Post # 4
LOL… your FMIL is a mix of my mom and my FMIL. My mom worries about money but not in a cheap/rude way (asking guests to pay for parts of the wedding is RUDE!!!!), she’ll be like, “do you really need flowers?” or “You should all drive yourselves instead of a limo” (we actually are doing that- she’s not so off base!)
FMIL knows we are paying for it ourselves and knows we don’t have $$ to burn, but even though she and her partner are rich, aren’t helping much at all. Knowing this, she’ll try to get us to be really spendy- like when we told her we’d be getting married in march “OH but you should have a fall wedding!” (we needed the time, christmas bonuses, and TAX RETURN!)
So mix my FMIL’s unreasonable-ness with my mom’s cheap ideas and you get your FMIL 🙂 I think you need to thank her for her suggestions, and find ways to make things CHEAP, but not in a way that you’d be appalled if you were a guest (I think a rehersal dinner is necessary but doesn’t have to be formal or even sit-down, for example.)
In the end do what works for your likes/dislikes and your budget!
Post # 5
MaryJane, you might be on to something. Maybe if I turn all that helpful, frugal energy onto a specific task, she’ll be helping and at the same time, not driving me insane.
I agree that there are more important things to spend money on than going out to eat, but I’d rather we just did something else instead. I always end up slipping the waitress extra $$ because the poor girl/guy is run so ragged by the end of the meal. She takes that phrase “getting your money’s worth” to a whole new level.
My FI has mentioned using her “methods” to get us deals on the reception, etc. But she’s SO over the top, I’m afraid our vendors will run screaming in the other direction. Her catch-phrase is “don’t ask, don’t get”. To me, some things you just shouldn’t ask for… $10 off your check because the waiter forgot the lemon for your water? Is that frugal or taking advantage?
Post # 6
Your situation sounds almost exactly like mine. My FMIL keeps insisting that our rehersal dinner should be at a bowling alley because FI’s cousin did that three years ago and it was “so much fun!” I have said over and over and over again that all I want is a nice dinner in a restaurant, and if it means that we can only have the bridal party and immediate family there well…you get what I’m saying. I have been dealing with this by saying “That sounds like a fun idea but what we both really would rather have is ______”
I would use her “Thrifty Nickel” tendancies to your advantage; ask her to help you find a great deal on a florist, or have her research the best deals on invitations. Keep her busy, and in the meantime just ignore the suggestions that sound unreasonable (like having guests pay for the wedding…seriously?!?).
Post # 7
haha wow. that is a little overboard. I’d say I’m a LITTLE like her… because I do think the “don’t ask don’t get” thing works… but I think my threshhold for what i should ask for is a bit closer to reality? haha i don’t know. That stuff would drive me nuts and I think that if it is actually affecting your wedding then you need to elect your FH to talk to her.
Maybe you could use her to your advantage… take her to meetings with your vendors and let her negotiate a price, then send her away for something and apologize to the vendor all “omg i know she’s so crazy right? so SORRY but see what i’m marrying into?” lol. Then you get the good deal AND the sympathy? Is that evil…? heh
Post # 8
I agree. I don’t think it’s right to make your guests pay for things for the wedding (That is just rude! and Tacky! I will tell you right now, that if someone sent me a wedding invite and expected me to pay for something for the wedding, I would probably not go.), but you could ask her to keep an eye out for deals and stuff, like the other bees have suggested. Maybe you could even sit down with her, and try to talk to her about some things, that might help too.