Post # 1
Here’s the sitch:
FI has two brothers. Brother #1 is married and FI’s two nieces are playing a part in the wedding. Brother #2 is divorced but living with girlfriend (who we like and will refer to as GF) and FI’s nephew is also playing a part in the wedding. GF has 3 daughters. None of whom are invited to the wedding. And let me say that we are already above and beyond our guest list even without inviting them.
Last night FI looks at me and wants to talk about this. Brother #2 has been with GF for a few years now but they are not engaged. FI is conflicted because he thinks that these 3 daughters of GF are considered ‘daughters’ to brother #2…family essentially. And now FI is thinking it would be disrespectful to brother #2 if we don’t invite them. And if brother #2 gets engaged between now and late August, that we definitely need to invite the girls. Their age ranges go from 12-19. And we already stated no children. (nieces/nephews didn’t count as we are close with them). I told FI that I’m not close with these girls and my fear is that they would act a bit nutso as they do when we visit them at their house.
It’s a very loud household and I really don’t want this happening at the reception. FI said he will plan on talking with brother #2 about this.
I’m not happy…at all. I have some family that I’m not inviting and we could potentially be inviting three peeps who I don’t really know very well.
I hate the guest list.
What would you do?
Post # 3
I, too, hate the guest list. There’s so much damn politics involved! If your reasons for not inviting them depends largely on budget, then I would stick to your guns and not invite the 3 daughters. Money doesn’t grow on trees and others can’t be insensitive to your budget! I also wouldn’t want to spend so much extra money just to avoid stepping on some toes, especially since these 3 daughters are not directly related to you or your FI. Just speak to GF directlly and explain to her that as much as you’d love to include as many guests as possible, your budget does not permit you to do so. However, if you have some wiggle room in your budget, I’d suggest to just include them, especially if you have a fairly good relationship with GF. Good luck!
Post # 4
Unless they get engaged between now and then, No, I don’t think you have to invite them. But I would keep that consideration in mind just in case. However, it’s perfectly fine to only include children who are IN the wedding.
Post # 5
Well, first, they are 12-19, not 3-4 so I don’t think you have to worry about them acting up at the wedding. While they may let loose a little bit in their own home, I’m sure by that age they know how to act in public.
Second, I’m not clear on who the nephew belongs to- is he the son of brother 1 or brother 2? And where do these girls live? Do they primary live with brother 2 and gf, or with their father? Assuming that nephew is the son of brother 2 and the girls live with brother 2 and gf, then I think if you are inviting one child of the household (nephew) then you must invite all children of the household. It would be really mean to say, “well brother 2, I know you consider these girls to be your children, but we don’t, and only your biological child is invited.” which is essentially what you would be saying if you refused to invite them. There is no amount of budget-saving that would make sending that sort of message ok, and doing so would probably severely damage your relationship with brother 2.
Now, if the nephew is NOT the son of brother 2, but is part of Brother 1’s family, then I think you have more leeway. In that case you could say that the nephew and nieces were invited because they were part of the wedding, but no one else’s children were invited. I would not mention to him that you feel close to your nieces and nephew and not to his kids, because even if its true he’s likely to take it the wrong way. But I think this only works if the nephew isn’t the child of brother 2, you know? Think about it this way, if you had decided to have one niece in the wedding but not the other- would you tell brother 1 that he had to leave one child at home? That probably wouldn’t have gone over well. So that’s why I think if you invite one child in the household, you should invite them all.
I really think you should take your guidance from you FI and his brother on this one. Your FI wants them invited (and it’s his family), your brother considers them his daughters, and going against this is going to cause you way more drama than its worth.
Post # 6
So FI’s nephew is Brother #2’s son by his previous relationship?
I always like to make hard-and-fast rules and stick by them. In my case, my rule was relatives get to bring kids if they’re still living at home, and coworkers don’t get to bring any kids… no exceptions. (Not sure what the rule for close friends would have been, but I only have one friend who has a kid, and the kid is my flower girl.) I think if I applied my rule to your situation, then I’d probably end up inviting those three girls. If Brother #2 and GF live as a family unit with kids, it would be hard to explain to them why you’re inviting the boy but not the three girls in that family unit.
Post # 7
I swear, guest list issues are going to give me a brain bleed. You are soooooooo not alone. In your case, I’d wait until your fiance talks to brother #2. There might even be a chance that girlfriend doesn’t want the daughters invited – maybe she wants a night without the kids. Or maybe the daughters won’t even want to attend – when I was their age, I would have rather hung out at a friend’s house than gone to the wedding of my mom’s boyfriend’s sister.
Post # 8
I voted invite them. You mentioned that FI’s bro and his GF have been together for a few years and these girls are like daughters to him. And while they may not be family to you yet, they are family to your FI’s bro (and very well may someday be family to you). I think it wouldn’t be the greatest situation to exclude them. It’s almost like you’re sending the message to the girls, “Hey, your good enough for FI’s bro, but you’re not good enough to come to my wedding.” It’s almost like how some people say, “you invite one cousin, you invite them all.” You can’t invite part of a family, and exclude the rest of that same family. It would be different if these were adult children living elsewhere, but these are still young kids living at home. I think it would create some serious tension later on town the road.