Post # 1
We’ve been engaged one month, our wedding is not for like two years, and we are already having problems out of my mom. Everytime I’ve brought the wedding up, she has gotten really offended about how we aren’t letting her help us plan. Fact is, there is no planning actually happening yet. It’s two years away. We are just tossing around ideas.
She freaks out especially when I mention something my fiance’s mother has thought of or suggested. I want to have a brunch reception, and tonight I mentioned to my mom that FMIL suggested we purchase smaller food items like orange juice and pastries at Sam’s Club instead of paying a caterer to do them (i.e. have the caterer focus on big meal items) and my mom got really upset and said the groom’s mother is not supposed to make suggestions. She says my FMIL is trying to take over the planning, which makes no sense. I think it’s fine for FMIL to make suggestions. I’m happy and honored that she wants to help.
She also keeps insisting that it’s “weird” that my fiance wants to be involved in the planning and has opinions about the wedding. She says that her mother planned her whole wedding, and that the bride and the mother-of-the-bride should be the only ones planning. I think that is 100% out of line. It’s his wedding too.
She also does not want us to have a brunch reception and wants to limit the guest list to 75 people. My closest family alone comes out to 78 people- that’s without my fiance’s family!
The conversation ended with her telling me to stop talking about the wedding and to just tell her when and where to show up. I’m hurt by her behavior and I feel like it has really started to sour the planning process for me.
Why is she acting like this, and what do I do?
Post # 2
I honestly think she comes from a good place. That’s how it was done back in the day, and she’s probably been looking forward to her time to shine with the planning. I think you need to talk to her, instead of being defensive. Tell her you understand she’s probably been looking forward to planning this event your whole life, but that you will be including your FI and FMIL as well. Tell her you value her opinion and you look forward to doing mother/daughter wedding stuff (if that’s true), but it will not be always just the two of you.
It’s one of those things you need to get in front of, before it becomes an issue.
Post # 3
Is your mom from any particular ethnic background? I just ask because that could help us give better advice.
Does she really want the wedding to be only 75 guests, or is that what she can afford, or is that the max number your budget could handle for a non-brunch meal And she prefers dinner so that ends up in you only being able to afford 75 guests?
Also, who’s paying for the wedding?
Post # 4
coachhw: She sounds like my mom.
If you’re not planning on getting married for a couple years, drop it for now and just enjoy your engagement. That’s what we did. We took a good 5 months to just celebrate and browse without any input from family or friends. Just the two of us. I suggest you get some concrete ideas of what YOU TWO want to do so that when your mother asks or mentions things, you already have the answers!
Post # 5
coachhw: Your mother is being childish and ridiculous. She wants to plan your wedding and is being territorial and aggressive.
Is she always like this or is your wedding just triggering something within her?
Either way you need to nip this. Find some quiet time to talk to her and ask what’s up? Listen.
Reassure her that her being involved is VERY important to you and how much you are looking forward to sharing all those precious mother/daughter moments. Tell her she will be involved and have input – but that the planning won’t strictly be you and she, that others will have input as well and that she will not be given total control – that ultimately you and your FI will make the final decisions. Tell her you do not want a drama filled planning process – it’s one day and if you take your M iL’s suggestion to use Sam’s Club hors d’ oeuvres, it takes nothing from your mother and she must stop being so possessive.
Post # 6
coachhw: Maybe she thought you were going to start planning right away and thats why. Try telling her I want to enjoy things a couple months but lets do whatever wedding stuff during this month. That way she knows when to expect you to start planning. Or you can decide the things that you would like her to be involved with and specifically say could you help me with these tasks? that way she also knows what she is responsible for and if she mentions anything else then you can just say no I only need help with those tasks the rest of these things are taken care of
Post # 7
coachhw: i see the problem. you are telling your mom she can’t offer suggestions but then you are sharing your FMIL’s suggestions with her.
Post # 8
Shkragoldfish: She’s a white, Southern lady in her forties if that counts as a particular ethnic background. 😀 I’m her only daughter. We still have to sit down with the families and talk about the budget, but I expect to pay for the lion’s share myself with help from my parents on specific items they are interested in purchasing (like my dress) and with fiance’s family taking care of all the traditional groom stuff (rehearsal dinner).
Zhabeego: She’s always like this. My dad warned my fiance when he asked for his blessing that the planning would be a nightmare with our mothers. I have tried to reassure her that I want her on board, but I do put my foot down when she says my fiance can’t be involved. I’m marrying him, not her, and his opinion is the most important one.
ajillity81: I have never told my mom she can’t offer suggestions. Not sure where that’s coming from. She’s been able to make lots of suggestions, she just thinks that she is the only one allowed to make suggestions, and no one else.
Post # 9
- Wedding: October 2014 - Church
coachhw: To me it sounds like she missed out on planning her wedding since your grandmother took it over so now it is her turn. Maybe let her cool off and talk to her. Wait a little bit before talking about wedding planning with her. It really suck, and I am sorry that you are having troubles with your mother already when you should be enjoying yourself in this joyous time.
Post # 10
It sounds like she is just being old fashioned and expecting the “old school” wedding rules to apply.
You can easily just let her know that you don’t expect the old school ways of who is suppose to pay for who. It’s just not like that anymore. If she wants to contribute, fine, but you and FI will be making the final decisions but with both sides input.
Maybe taking both FI’s parents and your parents out to lunch and just discuss general overview would be easier (or discuss separately but ask opinions on both sides) before making the final decision. Keep in mind if they do pay for certain things, you most certainly should be taking their opinion heavily before deciding.
It truly does sound like she’s coming from a good place but with her not getting to plan her own, you being the only daughter, i’m sure she’s looking forward to every aspect of it. Try and include her in all the details and share and ask her opinion on things. I’m sure it would mean the world to her.