(Closed) Do I have to invite FI ENTIRE family? How to politely say no!?

posted 11 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 4
56 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I don’t have any advice, but I totally feel you. My Mother-In-Law added all sorts of people to the invite list that I’d never met… mostly people from her church. My parents paid for the wedding, and didn’t invite any of their friends b/c as they said “those are our friends, not yours. you need to have your friends at the wedding”, so I felt especially bad that they had to pay for all of my inlaws’ friends. Oh well, it’s over now. 

Post # 5
936 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

I had this problem too.  It’s all about the money and these extra people will kill the budget.  We had a very strict rule about not inviting people who wouldn’t recognize us on the street in a foreign country.

Unfortunately, you can’t invite some of FFIL’s siblings, but not other ones.  You can, however, draw the line at kids (even if they are grown).

Figure out how much the wedding is costing you per person.  Include EVERYTHING such as alcohol, DJ, flowers, whatever.  Give each set of parents a number (after you have decided who YOU want to invite).  Let them know that beyond that number, they will have to pay for any further invitees.  You will need the cash before you order the invites.  Do NOT back down on the money.  It is amazing how much less they like people when they have to pay $100+ a head for them.  This tactic helped me tremendously!

Yes, this may take away from the smaller, more intimate wedding you wanted, but should still keep the peace.

If that doesn’t work, invite the people you want and tell them who you invited.  There will probably be a fight, but it is YOUR wedding and you are paying for it.

Post # 6
2315 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

@Georgia Bee: I definitely agree with you about taking clear, rational steps towards making your argument. It will be tough for FI’s parents to argue with the numbers if you lay them out on a cost per person basis. If you put it that way, and say “this is how many we can afford to invite,” I think that’s pretty difficult to dispute.

Would you be open to allowing them to invite additional people they want to if they were willing to pay for them?

Post # 7
3674 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: February 2010

I would just flat out tell them that you can afford for them to invite a certain amount of people, so they can’t go over that amount.

Post # 8
1416 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2011

I totally feel you.

I think you just have to draw a line in the sand somewhere.  We decided to invite only first cousins. No second cousins or third cousins or ex-step-aunts or whatever. We also didn’t invite children, simply becuase that would have meant we couldn’t invite a lot of adults.  I think to be fair, you just draw a line at when “close family” ends, and then apply that to everybody’s family.  If you happen to have a friendship relationship with your second cousin, though, then invite that person as a friend.

Post # 9
3982 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: February 2011

HAng in there! i know this feeling well! my Husband is one of 13 kids – his mom is one of 12 and his dad is one of 15 so you can imagine the number of aunts uncles cousins grandkids we had on our list. Im one of 5 kids, my mom is one of 5 kids so that just added to the number – we got super lucky in the fact that most of his family is wayyy up north – it was in the dead of winter and during the school year so we had a lot of people decline because of that – we also did the “no kids” rule hoping that would deter people from coming, we ended up with several kids at the wedding anyway but our number luckily dwindled because of that – not to mention his sister got married 6 months before and everyone had already traveled down here for that.

i personally would have your Fiance tell his mother, here is the number of people we can afford to have. split it in 2 – your side gets 50 and his side gets 50 – or if you know for a fact his family will have more people maybe give him 60 and you take 40? but you have to draw the line somewhere. we invited about 250 people and ended up with 120! not sure how we pulled that off but i was super happy.

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