Dad assumes he has total control on what he is paying for?

posted 2 years ago in Venue
Post # 2
1045 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: City, State

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bluesky355 :  I think yes, when someone pays, they have a say. Can you pay him back?

Post # 3
604 posts
Busy bee

Ideally he would pay and not want any input. However, he does have a right to want a say in how his money is spent.

I would have a conversation with him. “Dad, we so appreciate your generous offer to pay for these parts of the wedding. However, we have a certain vision for our wedding. Would you be willing to let us make these choices?”

If he says no, you have two options:

1) “While we appreciate your offer, these details are too important to us. We will pay for it ourselves.” And return his money.


2) If you can’t/don’t want to pay for his share, you’ll have to suck it up and do it his way. 

Unfortunately not every parent hands over money for a wedding with no strings attached.

Post # 5
9399 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2016

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bluesky355 :  yikes.

I mean I think he gets a SAY but overrulling you?  Wth?  That’s too rich for my blood.

I’d find a way to pay him back so you can handle that shit yourself–it’d stress me out wayy to much to let him have final say on the layout, napkins, etc.. wth.

Post # 6
1750 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

Unless his choices are really that terrible, I think I’d just enjoy his gift and give him that control. 


Rejecting his gift may not go over great. 

Post # 7
5856 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

I don’t think they should, but lots of people do feel that the person who pays has a say so if it bothers you maybe turn down the offer.

Post # 8
113 posts
Blushing bee

When my parents offered us money for our wedding, I spoke with them about this very candidly. I said “Thank you!  That’s so gerenerous!  My assumption is that this is a gift and is to be spent how we want, as it pertains to our wedding.  Should there be other strings attached, please let me know now and I’ll politely decline and return the money.” 

Post # 9
604 posts
Busy bee

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bluesky355 :  FWIW I would bring it up with him before totally letting it go. Even if the details are not THAT important to you, he might not realize it bothers you at all. I’d say, “I know you’re paying for these things and you can choose them if you have strong feelings about them, but if it were up to me I would do black chairs, these napkins and this layout.”

Post # 10
62 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: October 2019 - City, State

I do not think he gets a say.  He gave you a gift.  And it was a lovely gift.  But just like every other gift you give, once it is given it DOESN’T BELONG TO YOU ANYMORE and you get NO SAY in how it is used.  If I give you a gift of a book, and you decide not to read it but to use it as a door stop, that is your right!  You own the book!

I think you need to set some boundaries.  “Thank you for your input dad, but we are going this way.” If he throws a fit, or says something like “It’s my money” you can ask him to sit down and sign legal documents establishing the terms of the money provided and what he thinks it entitles him to.  Otherwise, without a written legal agreement, it’s a gift.  And gifts don’t belong to the person giving the gift.

Post # 11
327 posts
Helper bee

I think this is a weird in-between. Yes, dad has some say over which venue you book and whether or not he pays to get chairs. But it sounds like he’s disagreeing with you more over design than cost/what you’re getting. I’d sit down and talk to your dad about what is the most important to him and see if you can get him to budge – if not on everything, at least on some things. Otherwise, yes, as PP have written, you shoud return the money if you can’t make peace with the strings attached.

Post # 12
5066 posts
Bee Keeper

 In ideal world, all money would just be an outright gift with no strings attached.  However, people are allowed to give conditional gifts (i.e. I’ll give you $500 to pay for your textbooks, but you don’t get $500 if you are going to spend it on something else or drop out of school).  This is obviously a conditional gift.  He didn’t say “I’ll give you $4000 free and clear to spend on anything you like.”  He is offering that specific venue and those specific chairs and wants input into the things he is paying for.

When money is offered as a conditional gift, basically your options are to accept the conditions or refuse the money. 

Now, if he starts wanting input into other things he isn’t paying for, feel free to shut that down.

Post # 13
5230 posts
Bee Keeper

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gooberzilla :  You must live in Utopia. In the real world, gifts come with strings attached. It’s naive to think it should be otherwise. 

OP the thing to do is talk to your father and  come to some compromise/agreement.

Post # 14
1012 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

I couldn’t in good faith advice couples who are paying for their own wedding to tell their parents to stfu if I wasn’t willing to say that a father who pays for a wedding has say over the details. 

He can put whatever conditions he wants on his gift and frankly the cost of a venue with chair options is a very generous gift. Ideally both couples sit down and discuss who gets to pick what. Imo unless the napkins have pentagrams on them arguing over choice of napkins is petty. 

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