Post # 1
So, my fiance and I are already, in my opinion, way over budget. But, we’ve developed a savings plan and got a wonderful gift from my parents to help with the cost. Partially, the contribution was to help with allowing us to invite more of our friends despite and be less concerned with the budget. Right now we’re looking at about 150 guests.
My FFIL recently indicated that our current guest list, which only includes my fiance’s immediate family, up through first cousins (75 family members… half our guest list) needs to be expanded to also include second cousins. This would add 30-50 people to our list… To add to my concern is that neither of us really knows that part of the family very well. I really don’t want to have to pay for 50 people I don’t know.
I’ve been trying to convince my fiance to talk to his father and see if we can do a separate banquet or dinner (at a much cheaper cost) with the univited guests. It’s partially a cultural thing, but he won’t ask his parents to reconsider and won’t tell them it’s outside our budget, because he doesn’t want them to feel obligated to contribute.
Anyone with experience with a fiance with a large family and/or cultural issues where you HAVE to invite family and friends you don’t even know? I’m not sure if we should just suck up the cost or if there’s some way to convince his father that it’s too expensive to invite more people.
Post # 3
@Star Orchid: Who is the host of this event. If it is you and FI, then unfortunately (for them), the IL’s don’t really get much of a say. If you are the hosts, then you get to set the guest list and you are free to invite or not invite whomever you choose.
If however, they are hosting (which it doesn’t sound like, since he doesn’t want his family to feel obligated to contribute any $), then they get to set the guest list.
The fact that your husband won’t stand up to his family is perhaps a bigger issue, and something the etiquette won’t help you with.
Post # 4
That is tough because you say its a cultural issue. Are you of the same culture? Would this be a problem with your family if the situation was reversed? What would you do if it were reversed?
For me, it wouldnt be an option. We are starting a life together between him and me and I would want the precedent and boundaries set early between myself, husband and in laws who gets to make decisions. Families get to weigh in with their opinions, but they do not dictate what happens in the end.
To me, my fiance wouldnt have a choice but to have this conversation with his parents. I would make sure he knows why too. Not just because of money, but because of the authority his parents are not allowed to have any longer over him and, therefore, by extension, me.
Of course it needs to be dealt with in a very respectful manner because likely his parents will not like it. Anyone who doesnt get what they want will be upset.
Post # 5
I’m sorta glad my parents have been REASONABLY understanding about out limited guest list. They’ve asked to invite a few friends of theres (that I don’t even know), but a simple no there isn’t any room in the guest list was sufficient.
I agree with the poster above that if they aren’t paying they have no say. I also don’t think you’re being unreasonable in having 2nd cousins as your cut-off point. I am sorry your FI isn’t supporting you in this and talking to his parents. I hope you guys can talk about it a little more and come to an agreement.