Post # 1
My FI and are getting married this fall, and we have been very happy about the fact that we are able to pay for the wedding ourselves, and haven’t had to compromise on any of the things we want. We have a budget of $25,000 and are planning a wedding for about 115 people (close friends and family) at a winery.
Both my parents and my FILs have recently mentioned that they want to help us pay for the wedding. I consider this incredibly generous of them, and it would certainly make things easier for my FI and I money-wise, but I feel uneasy about it for a few reasons.
Firstly, nothing would change about the cost of our wedding based on our parents’ contributions, as we are already having the wedding that we want. I also am worried that my dad will try to guilt us into inviting my second and third cousins on his side of the family, which I and my FI are completely set against (for a number of reasons, one being it would make our venue pretty tight). A big part of the reason we waited until we could afford the wedding we wanted is because I know “whoever pays has a say” and I want my FI and I to have the final say at our own wedding.
Yesterday my dad floored me with an email saying he wants to give us $10,000 towards the wedding “to help pay for the meal”. This really caught me off-guard, as I never thought he would want to give us that kind of money, which would cover two-thirds of the cost of our venue. While I’m glad he wants to help, I am also very stubborn and independent, and the idea of having my parents “host” the wedding really irks me. However I don’t want to offend my parents or seem ungrateful by not accepting their offer.
What are your thoughts, bees? Personally, I would prefer that if our parents feel they really want to help us out, that they would just give us some cash as a wedding gift, rather than “paying for the wedding” (also for the record I would never expect them to gift us 10K… I think that is way too generous). If we accept their money now, does it still count as them paying if we are able to cover the costs ourselves, and use their money for something else (i.e. honeymoon, put some extra money on the mortgage, etc.)?
Thanks, I really appreciate your input!
Post # 3
I think you’re right on track with your logic. If parents contribute to the wedding fund, then they get a say (at least I think so, sounds like we’re both in agreement on this.)
Stand your ground. A simple “Thanks, but no thanks. We want to host the event ourselves and have the wedding we want.”
Post # 4
- Wedding: January 2013 - Harbourfront Grand Hall
@Little_Nut88: You’ve got valid concerns about them wanting to change things because they’re assisting in the cost My parents insisted I invite some family friends — that table was a WRECK. One didn’t show, one brought a plus one, one was running so late she came in mid-ceremony. Eeek! So I’m not a fan of parents insisting on certain people coming…
Anyway, depending on the relationship you have with your parents and how comfortable you are discussing money could you tell them that you and FI have things handled but they could use the money as a wedding gift? To help with the honeymoon, house, whatever you and FI need.
Post # 5
What if you asked them to put that money towards the honeymoon? That way they’re technically not paying for the wedding itself and have less of a say if they were putting money towards a “meal”.
Otherwise, give them something specific to pay for. Like, the photographer. Or the invitations. That way they can physically see what their money is going towards and it’s not just a general “gift” that they can then hold against you with planning.
Post # 6
This depends on the relationship you have with your parents so it is hard for me to say. But I think you should just talk to your parents and figure out if it is them paying for the wedding and therefore hosting, or them gifting you money for your wedding.
In my situation, my parents gave us a very generous check shortly after we were engaged. They gave their opinions, but never had demands. But that is how it is with my parents. They will always tell you what they think/want you to do, but they won’t pull the “well I’m paying for it so what I say goes” card.
Post # 7
Your logic is right on. I say take @KateByDesign:‘s advise and ask them to put it towards the honeymoon, “since you already have the wedding costs covered”
Post # 8
@Little_Nut88: It depends on your parents, but you could respond with a “thank you so much for the offer. We have already signed a contract for the meal we are having and the number of people we will be having. If you are okay contributing knowing that we can’t make any changes, we would be really flattered”. It may be very important to your dad to feel like he is hosting or contributing.
Post # 9
@mchitt329: Yikes about your “family friends table”… fortunately there aren’t too many people who would fall into that category for me.
@KateByDesign: I like the idea of paying for a specific thing. When my FILs had offered to help they wanted to pay for a rehersal dinner if we have one, so at least that is something specific that they could do.
@yellowshoe: I have a pretty good relationship with my parents, and so far have been okay with our decisions on the wedding, even those I know they don’t agree with. I just don’t want to put myself in a position where they try to make demands.
I think I really just need to sit down and talk to them about it and see what expectations they have that would go along with the money.
Post # 10
@Pollywog: I agree completely about it being important to my dad about hosting. I am in a sports league that my dad is part of and having heard his friends there talk to him about my wedding, it seems like people just assume he is paying for it. He is quite proud (probably where I get it from) so I’m sure that has something to do with it.
Post # 11
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
My parents are paying for most of our wedding ($12,000 budget) and they’re not being demanding at all about who we invite, or anything else for that matter. If you have a straightforward honest relationship with your folks, can you just ask them whether accepting this incredibly generous gift would come with any strings attached?
You never know – you could get the best of both worlds here. It’d be pretty sweet to have your parents contribute a big chunk, and you could pay for a nice honeymoon / add to the mortgage / etc.