Post # 1
I’m seriously about to punch something. My parents are paying for our wedding, which I am completely grateful for, and I understand the whole “you pay, you play” thing. I’ve come to terms that they will have a lot of input on the guest list, and I have been making sure to send them info on or cc them on everything my fiance and I have as our top choices. My parents have been included in all discussions and we would never book anything without their approval since it’s their money. Both my parents have said that this money is a gift for us and they want us to have what we want for the wedding.<br />
That said… my dad keeps contacting vendors and it’s driving me crazy! The worst part is, he keeps contacting people that I have already talked to! Seriously, I emailed the place we were thinking of getting our cake from in February to get a rough estimate and see how it fits into the budget. Last week, he called them and then went on and on about how their travel fees are too much. We’re getting married in August 2015, so I’m not feeling rushed to make any decisions, but now he’s talking about how we need to start tasting cakes closer to where we’re getting married. I’m fine with that, but I’m not going to start seriously tasting things over a year out from the wedding.<br />
Lately, we’ve been trying to nail down our photographer because we want to go engagement shots this summer. I spent days and days looking at galleries of photos, emailing to get quotes, having preliminary talks, etc. I cc’d my dad on all of the pricing and called/emailed him after every phone conversation. The photographer we love costs more than my parents and I had budgeted, so my FI and I said we’d be comfortable with contributing some of our own money to make up the difference. I just got an email from my dad where he contacted a photographer/videographer that 1. I had emailed over a week ago and 2. is more expensive than the people we want to go with!!! His email also informs me that this person is “really good,” as if the photographer FI and I want isn’t. FYI, the photographer we love has been featured multiple times on SMP, in popular magazines, etc. It’s not like we like photographs that are crappy. I also studied art history in college and have a master’s in museum studies, so I’d like to think I’m a decent judge of photographer.
I understand that if my parents are paying they’re going to want to be pretty involved, but it’s my dad’s complete lack of communication skills that are just beyond frustrating for me. Also, I think it comes off as weird when someone’s dad is the first point of contact. It’s not his wedding. I don’t want my vendors to view him as the most important person or always trying to please him first. I also don’t want them to view me as a spoiled little girl whose daddy takes care of everything.
I’ve asked my dad several times to back off and at least ASK me first if I’ve contacted people, so he’s not doing work that’s already been done. I don’t know what else I can say to get him to realize he shouldn’t randomly contact people. I honestly think this is more of a control issue for him than a money issue – he wants to pick everything because he thinks he gets the best deals, has the best taste, etc. I don’t know what else I can say to at least get him to communicate with me before acting!<br />
Post # 2
Holy crap your dad sounds so much like mine. The photography comment sounds exactly like something he would say. I could completly envision my dad doing this if we allowed our parents to pay for the wedding.
Anyway, you need to make it clear that it is a waste of effort to have 2 people contact the same vendors, and to contact other vendors after you’re getting close to booking one. I think you and your FI should make a shortlist of vendors you’re interested in and try to stick to that. A very clear list of who you are interested in, whether they have been contacted (and by whom), and what their quote is. Put it into Google Docs and share it with your family so you can both work on it and see each others’ updates. Ultimately it is their money and their call, but perhaps getting him to focus on a more narrow set of options will be helpful.
Post # 3
bleusteel: The Google doc is a good idea – thanks!
Post # 4
Lol. I could have written the exact same thing last summer. This is what I did when he kept calling our photographer:
“hey dad, got a call from photographer today and he was trying to clarify things. He was confused about who he should call when he had questions and wasn’t sure if we were even the same client because he isn’t used to communicating with muktiple people for one wedding, so how about I am the main contact for the photographer, cake, officiant, and caterer and you can be the main contact for the tent rental and transportation and FI will be the main contact for the DJ and mom for the florist. We will all keep each other in the loop but it keeps our vendors from getting confused or frustrated.”
that was last September and so far it worked like a charm!! if he has questions about something that someone else “owns” he lets them know so that they can report back after they talk to them. We also agreed that his name would be on all contracts and therefore he got to see them all before anything was final, but questions still went through the communicator for that vendor.
i have an update meeting with my parents on Monday where I will tell them the answers to everything they asked me to find out from my assigned vendors.
Hope this helps!!
Post # 5
My dad was very over the top and controlling with some things but… Isn’t it a little cute and sweet how much they care? We called him “dadzilla” affectionately. He wanted it to be perfect for everyone.
he got a liiittttttle frustrating around the seating chart – putting the tables together was no problem but where the tables were? That was an issue. But that’s because he wanted to make everyone happy.
Post # 6
TGold: Whew. I’d be trying REAL HARD to get dad under control. For me personally there is NO amount of money towards a wedding that could make me put up with that. I would be doing whatever I could, down to having a small wedding, that would mean paying for it myself to have control. I will tell you, from a vendors point of view (I’m a photographer) if I was getting calls from a parent prior to even booking I wouldn’t be touching the wedding with a 10 foot pole. It’s *extreamly* hard for vendors when situations like this happen and really can affect our work. My clients, regardless of who pays me, is always the bride/groom. Pushy parents are one of our worst nightmares because we don’t WANT to have to tell mom/dad “no” but their wants/desires almost always go against what the bride/groom have told us they want.
Post # 7
TGold: I think this is really sweet even though it’s annoying. I think your mistake is over sharing out of respect for his/ their payment.
the google docs is a great idea, as is ONE email before you book a vendor with a quote and 3 reasons why you picked them. I would not be sharing the entire process with him, he obviously wants to make everything perfect for his daughter and wil not stop at annoying everyone:-)