Post # 1
So just to give you a base, I was pretty disappointed when I discovered Fiance and I had different views on what “close/immediate family” was when we created our guest list for the wedding. His list ended up being WAY longer than mine, and then half of mine couldn’t make it anyway so now I’d say his family is about 75 percent of the guest list. I was especially upset at the news about my Maid/Matron of Honor maybe not being able to make it, and having one less important person to me absent in the sea of people from his side of the family I don’t know. I thought he understood this and was sympathetic. He knew I wish we had managed a smaller list now, but I’ve accepted that’s not possible and was decided on making the best of it.
So now his mom calls the other day, and wants to invite everyone who is coming to the wedding to the Rehearsal Dinner AND more cousins and people from her church who I don’t know, as a “sorry we couldn’t include you in the wedding gesture.” I told him I felt like that was going to put me in the same uncomfortable situation I was worried about being in for the wedding, only MORE so. He got upset and is now angry because he feels I am trying to punish his family simply because some of the guests from mine cant come, and because I didn’t invite as many as I would have liked to try to keep the guest list down and it’s too late to change that.
Normally, I’m a very social person, and say “the more the merrier” but for our wedding day and Rehearsal Dinner, I just want to feel comfortable and surrounded by people I ALREADY know and love. We have the rest of our lives for me to get to know/become comfortable with the guests we may have had to exclude for these events after we’re married and hopefully move out to CO (where they all live) in the next couple of years. Seriously, is this really selfish of me for wanting to limit guests for my own personal comfort? Maybe it is, maybe I’m wrong. As usual, im sure the boards will help.
Post # 3
A lot of people prefer more intimate rehearsal dinners, so I don’t think you’re being selfish at all. From this post and your other posts, it sounds like the wedding weekend is turning out to be somewhat focused on your Fiance and his family. I don’t blame you for feeling a little lonely!
I would talk to your Future Mother-In-Law and Fiance together, if possible. Explain that you’re looking forward to getting to know your new family, but that you’d really looked forward to a more intimate rehearsal dinner to spend extra time with your loved ones, especially with everything that’s going on in your family. Hopefully they’ll understand.
Post # 4
I don’t think you’re being selfish. Usually the Rehearsal Dinner is just for immediate family (parents, grandparents, and siblings) and those directly involved in the wedding (bridal party, ushers, readers, etc.) to thank them for their help and support. I can understand that she’s happy her son is getting married and wants to make a big deal about it and I can also understand if she feels bad that not everyone could be invited. However, I don’t think the Rehearsal Dinner is necessarily the time to have all these people over. Maybe you could suggest having a larger get together after the wedding and keeping the Rehearsal Dinner just for those who are very close to you? Good luck!
Post # 5
You’re not being selfish at all. Have you suggested a “celebration dinner” a few weeks after the wedding? This way, you can have a fun low-key potluck style celebration for the church friends and distant relatives. I recently had a friend get married in Key West (his fiance’s hometown). Their wedding was very small and intimate and they really loved it. His mom, however, is a Houston socialite and threw them a celebration part in Houston after they returned from the honeymoon. She planned the entire thing (and paid for it) so they were glad to oblige.
Hopefully you can come to a creative solution.
Post # 6
Hmm, well first, I’m sorry you are feeling disappointed by some people not being there for you on your day.
I don’t think that it would be proper to invite people to the rehearsal dinner, who are not invited to the wedding. If they want to make it up to these people, maybe they can host a separate party for you after the honeymoon. But I don’t like trying to include those who didn’t make the cut at the Rehearsal Dinner.
As for the fight about Fiance thinking you’re punishing his family etc….. Well I know some brides can feel uncomfortable if they feel overwhelmed by the number of people on the grooms side, however, it isn’t just about your day. It’s your FI’s day too. It sounds like those folks are pretty important to him. If you are asking himn to cut people he really wants to have there, just because you won’t have that many people, I think I’d try to get over it. (But I’m not sure if I’m reading your intentions correctly.)
Do you feel this could have been talked through better, in hindsight? Do you feel cheated that you were working hard to stay within the budget, and chopped your guestlist, but Fiance did not share equally in the process? I’m guessing it’s too late to go back and reeavluate now.
I think you should just take it where it stands now. Try to be accepting of (what I’m assuming is) your Fi having a larger family than yours. What’s done is done. Let it go. However, without dredging up the whole wedding guest list, I would explain that inviting people to the Rehearsal Dinner, who aren’t invited to the wedding is not proper. It’s also a little overwhelming to think about a wedding reception, the day before your actual wedding reception. And that perhaps another party can be planned after the honeymoon. But try not to come from an agnry “not more of your mom’s people” angle.
Post # 7
Oh ETP, this is going to be a hard weekend for you. You can point out that it’s really quite impolite to invite people to the rehearsal dinner who haven’t been invited to the wedding, but as for his family? Ultimately, you’re not the host of the rehearsal dinner, but its guest of honor, along with your Fiance. That means that the ultimate decisions on guest list reside with your Future In-Laws. I’m sorry that your Fiance feels hurt and attacked. He probably doesn’t know what to do with your unhappiness and sadness that your Maid/Matron of Honor cannot be there. A book that has really helped us has been Daniel Wile’s “After the Fight,” which explains how fights often degenerate into defensiveness instead of actually expressing what we’re feeling. His list of 44 defensive responses is hilarious and kind of embarrassing when you realize how many you use yourself. It sounds like your Fiance is overwhelmed and doesn’t know how to help you.
Post # 8
Hey everyone, so here is the update. I talked to Mr. Panda about it last night and he called his mom today to discuss it. Thanks to all your responses he realized that it’s not really appropriate to invite these people to the Rehearsal Dinner, and that yes, it will make my family and I uncomfortable to be so outnumbered at both the wedding and the Rehearsal Dinner.
We suggested having a separate party Thursday night, but apparently Future Mother-In-Law had already invited people for the friday night Rehearsal Dinner and some guests had made travel plans. So now the new separate party is going to have to be a Friday afternoon lunch (same day as the rehearsal and RD). I feel overwhelmed by the timing, but I really can’t complain because I know they are going out of their way to try to make my family and I feel more comfortable for the Rehearsal Dinner and wedding.
I am a little concerned, however, that the guests who come to the lunch will feel excluded from our wedding and now “kicked out” of our Rehearsal Dinner, as I didnt know that (aside from a few people) any non-wedding guests had already been invited to the Rehearsal Dinner.
Now Fiance is talking about giving his parents money to host this new lunch and I’m really dreading talking to him about that, because the budget for the wedding has been a major source of strife between us. Maybe I should have just left it alone :/
Post # 9
I don’t think it’s selfish of you AT ALL. Why is it that Fiance wants all of these people there, exactly? I guess I would want to really hash out his reasons for that – becuase your wedding is about the TWO OF YOU and I mean, you’re one half of that – so you being comfortable is clearly VERY important.
Post # 10
He and particularly his mom wants them all to be included somehow because we live in PA for the time being, and he doesn’t get to see them often. We have been to Colorado to see some of them about four or five times in the last two years. Also, in his family, he says they include everyone in everything.
I’m okay with the lunch now, and I’m just praying people weren’t already told “Rehearsal Dinner” so they dont now feel kicked out of that too. Personally, if it were me, I would be really more annoyed by this (sorry you cant come to the wedding, come to the Rehearsal Dinner, oh wait you can’t come to that either, you have to come to this little lunch thing) than if I had just not been invited to the wedding bc the couple couldn’t afford it and left alone at that.
I don’t agree we should have to pay money toward it, just because I didn’t want to include these people in the Rehearsal Dinner and his parents still wanted to include them somehow. It was their decision to want to include them so badly as to organize a separate event. My dad didn’t mind paying for a wedding that consisted of 14 people in our family and 50 in his.