We Are Cutting Our Guest List…Help Me Prepare To Tell My FIL's (long)

posted 3 years ago in Money
Post # 3
2649 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

@Meant2Bee:  Your FI should be the one to handle this – not you. He should be matter of fact – we can’t afford, nor do we want a large wedding. We know this is disappointing to you and we’re sorry about that but this is our final decision on the matter. We are giving you X number of invitations to use as you like, but that number is the maximum and not open for further debate. Ask that they respect your decision.

Its possible they will offer to contribute financially. Be prepared to say no if you really want to keep the numbers down. Maybe counter that if they like, they can host a party for the people that can’t be accommodated at your wedding.

One last word of advise – don’t start down this path unless you are both sure this is what you really want – especially your FI – and are willing to deal with and accept the fallout. While your FI may not care about the people his Mom wants to invite being there, he may very well care if she is hurt, disappointed and upset. 

Post # 4
4513 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I’d just have your FI say, “with being laid off we can’t afford a wedding this large, but thinking about it we really think we’d prefer something smaller anyway.” What are they going to say? You can’t afford it. And if they offer you money then you’ve already stated that you want to go smaller anyway.

I am having a small, intimate wedding (40 guests) and I am so happy that we went this route. I just really only want our closest friends and family there, not people we haven’t seen/spoken to in years or don’t even know.

Post # 6
754 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2012

I personally would try to avoid the “we can’t afford it” talk unless you are certain they will not offer to pay the difference themselves. I would focus on what you WANT, which is the smaller wedding. 

Have you sent Save the Dates, gotten addresses for these other people, etc… Just trying to gauge how committed to these guests the parents are going to be. I would definetly consider giving them a certain # of invites. Go with a list of the people you are going to invite and just say “we have kept 5/10/however many spots open for you to invite who you would like” (are some of the 70 FMIL guests family? Will any of them still be invited to this smaller wedding, if so definetly point them out to the FMIL). 

Just read your update, unfortunately FMIL is not going to handle it well no matter how you approach it. Just stay strong!! 

Post # 7
2562 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

You have a perfect reason just in the fact that your FI was laid off.
If she can’t be understanding about that, then I think you need a major overhaul of her role in your relationship… just because she’s his mom doesn’t mean she’s a good influence on your marriage.

Not to sound harsh, but you are paying for this wedding… this is as simple (and as complicated) as telling her that together, you’ve decided to change the tone and size of the wedding (for very legitimate and obvious reasons) and that she can no longer invite any of her own personal guests. I wouldn’t even give her any exceptions.

If she begins to throw a fit, you both (but especially FI) need to tell her that kind of behaviour will not be tolerated, and then… don’t tolerate it. Block her on your phones if you have to. If she wants to throw a temper tantrum, ignore her. If she wants to put a guilt trip on you, ignore her. It’s not somethign either of you need right now.

Because hey, who are you marrying – your FI or his mom? It’s not her wedding.

And then don’t send invites to her friends.
If she invited people by word of mouth, that is not your problem, she’ll need to un-invite them herself (like a grown-up).

This will be tough but you can get through it.
I am so glad to hear that you two are in counseling together, that really will help a lot.

Post # 8
2696 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@Meant2Bee:  I’m so sorry your dealing with g clingy FMIL. Often times when mothers have terrific sons they begean to behave like their sons are their boyfriends and they get mad at the girlfriend/fiance/wife for taking a place that they aren’t allowed to fill. They are lowkey mad they can’t marry the men and I don’t blame them, they are awesome men. I can relate because my FI is indeed the golden child. Moms, sisters, aunts etc. all adore him. Instead of getting upset about how they act I just feel sorry for them. Sorry, you can’t marry your son/brother/nephew.

I would totally leave this speech up to your FI so that you won’t end up looking like the “villain” fiance who’s doing this just to spite your FMIL. I would just keep it short and sweet. “We cannot afford a 150 person guest list, nor did we want a large wedding and we hope that you can support us as it is very difficult for us to have to do this and I hope you can support us.” I would be so humble and sweet as pie.

Proverbs 16:24   Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

Post # 10
2562 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

@Meant2Bee:  My FMIL offered to give me money so that she could have all her friends there. We declined – we didn’t want her money if it was only to pay us off so she could have more friends. The money would have come with so many strings that it wasn’t worth it.
I prefer to pay everything ourselves, that way we know we have the money (instead of a promise of money) and it’s much less stress on me.

I think you should consider paying for the wedding without any help from your FIL’s. That way you have more control over your choices and guest list, and it’s much easier to say “no” to them when their money isn’t involved.
Even if that means you need to push the date – getting laid off is an unforseeable circumstance, and it’s a very valid reason to push your date back in order to save money.

Post # 11
6 posts
  • Wedding: September 2013

I thought being pressured into having kids at my wedding was bad, I have two kids on my side and didn’t care to have them, my FI comes from a large family that and all his cousins have tons of kids, FMIL insisted they be invited…thankfully only 7 are actually coming and the caterer I found has kids meals to cut on costs.

I learned quickly all wedding communication to FMIL needs to go through my FI, he can say no to her I can’t.

As long as you and your fiance provide a united front and when he talks to his mother he doesn’t back down on decisions you made together things should work out, ever since the kid thing that happened right in the beginning of planning FI and I have been able to keep things how we want them.

Post # 12
2394 posts
Buzzing bee

I agree with PPs, leave this one to your FI.

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