- 3 years ago
Hi everyone! 🙂
I’m really excited to begin discussing wedding things with everyone. My boyfriend (fiance!) and I have been engaged for a few months now and have finally begun to plan wedding things. I’m 22 finishing my post-grad degree (fast tracked) and he is 23 working full-time in the trades. We were highschool sweethearts who have been together for almost 7 years.
For the longest time, we were stalled because of various money and family problems. I moved out very young and never returned home after going to university due to issues with my parents. My eldest brother abused me for years until I finally moved out one night. When we got engaged, my parents didn’t hear about it for a couple of days as they usually don’t pick up the phone when I call (going back to issues when I was a teenager and moved out). I got through 2 degrees in university with student loans, so the nature of our relationship has been very distant. For several reasons, our engagement got off to a bad start. Even after I reached my parents, they had been hurt that others had talked about the engagement before they had heard (our family gossips quite a lot). Apologies aside, they still have not had any part in discussing or planning, which is okay.
My fiance’s parents are happy and supportive of us, but they don’t like weddings and don’t want to be a part of it. Our relationship is quite good, although his sisters used to be quite hateful towards me and very possessive their brother, my fiance. His step-dad had taken me aside in the past on a few occasions to tell me that “this relationship won’t work out, you will go places and he won’t be able to follow” or “he’s not right for you,” and things of that sort. I’ve always been too scared to speak about this again with him as he’s a bit of an explosive person. Part of me feels like wayyyyy underneath everything, his parents might not be entirely supportive. Whenever we bring up the discussion, they reiterate that they are actually happy, so we don’t worry about it too much.
Coming back to the present, we’ve started picking out some small, not-traditional venues and restaurants for receptions. I’ve read a lot of posts in IntimateWeddings, but I’m not sure how to announce or let people know that our wedding will be very small (guest list of 30-40, maximum). My family is very large and it’s expected that all of the “cousins” have extremely large weddings with everyone present. With my fiance’s family included, the guest list would be well over 150 people, which we simply can’t afford. Our budget is roughly $5000 for everything.
We don’t want to put off our wedding because we can’t afford to have everyone present, which is why we settled on a small event. Logically, I think it’s silly to host so many people that I hardly know and that I only see maybe 1-2 times per year, family or not. We’d be much comfortable with just our friends and major stakeholders in the relationship, and then parents and grandparents. My parents have stepped forward (8 months after the engagement) and offered $2500 for the wedding- but we have to hold it where they choose and invite everybody. We have decided that we won’t accept this money, but my parents don’t know yet.
We also haven’t done any of the traditional things and we aren’t planning on having showers or registries or any of that. I feel like it’s silly to expect distant relatives and cousins to buy gifts for us when my partner and I have almost always been estranged “outcasts,” and they barely know us. We just want to have the ceremony the day of, and then dinner at a restaurant.
Is there a way to do this without offending everyone? Has anyone else had a very small intimate wedding before despite having a massive family and expectations for a huge party? How about similar ambiguity from parents and inlaws?