- 2 weeks ago
- Wedding: September 2017
I will preface this by saying our wedding planning has not been without significant family drama. In hindsight I really would have preferred a small destination wedding but FI was actually fairly insistent we have a “traditional” wedding so I went along with it and now we’re fairly far in the planning process. He knows and understands my frustration but his family is very opinionated.
So initially we had some issues with our guest list. My parents are paying for the reception and it has quickly become over a 60k affair. We aren’t getting married anywhere fancy (actually a fairly affordable banquet hall for reception) and we’ve chosen fairly reasonable vendors. It just – somehow – has become ultra-expensive. My mom has taken a fairly hands-off approach to planning thus far. She came with me to find my dress and that’s it. She didn’t care who we invited, I think my parents only had 15 guests of their own and they were all family friends or people I had grown up with – it made sense to invite them.
My FI’s family on the other hand was very upset by the lack of invitations we gave them. This was not a decision made by my mother, this was a decision made by my FI and I. We didn’t want random guests at our wedding. Of course we allowed his parents to invite their closest friends but they started adding on very random people my FI had never met, and whom they hadn’t seen in 5+ years- not close relatives either. They invited close to quadruple the guest count of my parents. Not wanting to cause any drama we allowed it but capped it past a certain point. This actually caused a ton of drama and fighting. FI’s parents offered to pay for their extra guests, but it wasn’t a question of money – it was a question of not wanting random guests whom we had never met at our wedding, and also wanting to keep it somewhat even on both sides.
Now FI’s family has started planning the rehearsal dinner and leaving very little invitations for my family. This has made my mom VERY upset. She is of the opinion that all out of town guests should be invited to the rehearsal – while I disagree with her on that to some degree (we are fairly young and a lot of our out of town guests have student loans and its a stretch for them to attend our wedding financially – so while I think it would be nice to include everyone – BUT it’s def not a “must”) I do disagree with some of the people FI family does not want us to invite.
Example: My FI’s best man is a close family friend, as family members don’t typically serve as the best man in their cultural tradition (I converted to their religion and we are getting married in his childhood church). They are inviting best man’s entire family, i.e. parents, siblings, etc. Similarily, my best childhood friend will be my maid of honor, but her family isn’t going to get invited??? Just her and her boyfriend? This obviously has made my mother fairly upset. Another example – FI’s cousins are going to be ring bearer/flower girl so their entire family gets invites. Two of my cousins (from the same immediate family) are going to be bridesmaids, but the rest of the family doesn’t get invitations. Does this make sense? I think my FI has to be the person to put his foot down and there needs to be a logical reason why – or why not – certain people get invited to the rehearsal. However, if we invite everyone from my side we’re already at double the guest count FI’s family had initially wanted at the rehearsal.
Now my mom thinks I should have just allowed FI’s family to invite whoever they wanted to the reception because she thinks that’s partly why they’re limiting our rehearsal dinner invitations. However, save the dates have already gone out. Does anyone have any advice for me? I only mentioned the total amount she’s spent on the wedding because I really don’t want to suggest that perhaps we offer to pay for the rehearsal dinner for our guests – she has already spent a fortune on the wedding and it doesn’t seem right to me.
Also, does everyone in the wedding party typically get a date for the rehearsal dinner? One way we could limit the guest list is not giving our single groosmen/bridesmaids +1s at the rehearsal dinner unless they’re coming from out of town, but I don’t know if that’s super rude.