Post # 1
I recently got engaged (3 weeks ago), and we’re trying to figure out a budget and a venue. I’m totally fine with a more rustic or industrial feel, or even something outdoors in a field or something, but even still, we can’t find anything that doesn’t cost several thousand.
Honestly, my parents can afford to contribute some to the wedding, and I would find it odd if they didn’t, but they haven’t brought it up. Is it rude to ask them if they’re planning to contribute in any way?
My mom asked me if I wanted to go to lunch today, which is strange because we just spent last Saturday together for my grad school graduation, and decided not to get together on Mother’s Day, because she said it would be silly to go out to eat because we had just had a cookout at my house. So when she called on Monday to see if I could go to lunch to “chat,” I thought it must be some special occasion.
During lunch, she talked all about my male cousin’s wedding, saying how her sister is paying for most of the wedding, and that my cousin’s dad (who he rarely sees) sent him a check for $1000. I replied “Oh that’s nice,” (because I would be very grateful to get such a large gift towards my wedding) but she made it seem like it wasn’t enough, but said that he shouldn’t have to contribute anyway (since he’s the groom’s family) and that he already paid for my cousin’s first wedding.
Then she talks about my cousin’s fiance, and said that her mother was only able to contribute $300 because she has health problems, and made it seem like it was unfortunate since it’s the bride’s family who is supposed to pay.
I sat and listened to her talk the entire time about my cousin’s wedding, thinking she was eventually going to bring up mine. But she never did. I don’t want to be rude, but given her opinions on the situation with my cousin, I feel like it would be really strange if they didn’t offer any help at all. Is she waiting for me to bring it up? Is it just too soon since we’ve only been engaged a few weeks? She is so super excited we’re getting married. Should I just bring it up and ask? Knowing if they were contributing at all would help us be able to book a venue and pick a date. She (and the rest of my family) keeps bugging us about setting a date.
Post # 3
I would just plan it as if you were paying for it all. If your mom does help great, but don’t depend on it. I never asked anyone if they were contributing to our wedding, but if money does come along then great.
Post # 4
Can you approach it as if asking for her help figuring things out? “Mom, James and I are starting to talk about the budget for our wedding and I was wondering if you could help me decide how much I need to allot for each expense?” This gives her the opportunity to say “We’ll chip in XX amount” or “We’ll cover the florist and cake.”
Post # 5
@kb7: Many people will say No. You shouldn’t ask if they are planning to contribute. A direct question like that can be perceived as rude.
The next time they ask if you have set a date yet, you could say somehting like ” No. We need to ascertain our budget first before we confirm any decisions about the wedding.”
That might prompt a discussion about any contribution they plan to make.
Post # 6
@Schatzie821: That’s a good idea.
Post # 7
I point blank asked my dad to help and it was one of the most awkward moments of my life. My parents are divorced & my mom basically made me ask him. I like @Schatzie821: suggestion.
Post # 8
It all depends on how you bring it up!
Not okay to discuss it in a way that makes it sound like you expect them to contribute or that you assume they will or anything like that.
But if you sit down and discuss it like….So fiance and I are beginning to plan some of the basic stuff. I really need your help with the family guest list so Fiance and I can set on our budget and look for an affordable venue. Also I am hoping you will want to come with me to help me pick out my dress! Those are normal things to ask help on, and if your mom is planning to contribute I bet she’ll take that opportunity to say so…if she isn’t, she won’t.
If she doesn’t and you need financial help down the road, consider asking politely for a loan (not if they are having financial stress though) to help with some of the bigger expenses and discuss a payment plan post wedding.
Post # 9
@kb7: I 100% believe you should ask for the exact amount. It’s not rude, it’s makes financial sense.
My Fiance and I are HUGE on making elequent and planned financial decisions. You don’t want to feel like your planning a wedding that you can’t really afford. Explain to them how important it is to you and your Fiance to start your marriage off in the best financial situation and in order to do that you NEED to know. Both of our parent’s surprised us with how genrous they are going to be.
I think our parents really understood because they know how fiancies can completely destroy a marriage and they didn’t want that for us.
Post # 10
@kb7: I think it really depends. My family is close, but I have never been comfortable asking people for help, I am just really independent. I think if your family is close and you feel comfortable, you could ask. Just say, I am trying to come up with a budget and was wondering if you would be able to help, even in the smallest way. But I also think the PP’s idea about trying to get your mom involved with budget allotments is a good idea. If you could get an estimate of what things would cost, then kind of mention in front of your mom that you and your fiance will have to start saving, maybe she will take the hint and bring up if they will help. Its sort of an awkward situation!
Post # 11
These are all good suggestions! I don’t think they would think it was rude if I asked, but it is awkward and I don’t want to make them feel like they have to. But the way she was talking today made me feel like it will be very strange if they don’t offer to help.
I thought about just talking about possibly eloping because we can’t afford a nice wedding. Haha that would get her in gear I think! (kidding)
Post # 12
@kb7: There is really no harm in asking. Just approach it right and don’t sound greedy.
Post # 13
We started planning as if we were paying for it all ourselves and then my family pitched in :).
Post # 14
Definitely ask. The worst thing that can happen is they say they can’t swing it.
Post # 15
I know most people will say don’t ask, but I did! I knew my dad could help and would want to, but he’s not Mr. Planny. We had 4 months to make it happen, and I couldn’t dance around waiting for him to realize he should offer LOL. I didn’t ask for an amount, I asked if he could cover certain things (and made sure the prices were OK with him). Same with my mom (who did surprise me by buying my dress!).
Post # 16
@kb7: plan as if you have to pay for everything yourself. You shouldn’t ask, if your parents want to help, they will offer. If you’ve only been engaged a few weeks and haven’t set a date, that might be a reason why they haven’t offered.