family politics… what to do (suggestions, please!)

posted 8 months ago in Ceremony
Post # 2
2022 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2018

Your wedding should be what you and your FH wants. Not crazy demands from family. 

You don’t owe anyone a wedding. 

Post # 3
2897 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2018

lorzzzzzz :  I understand his parents wanting to attend the wedding because you guys are close to them. My husband and I thought about eloping with just a couple friends as witnesses but it would have broken our mothers hearts. 

If you want to elope, elope and have his parents as witnesses. If you’re not close to your own parents, and they haven’t been supportive of your relationship (they don’t like your fiance, don’t care to meet his parents) then I wouldn’t base any of my decisions around their wants or needs.

Ultimately, it is you and your fiances wedding and it should be done the way you want it, but that’s much easier said than done..

Post # 4
8716 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

lorzzzzzz :  I would invite both sets of parents. You don’t have to of course, and if your parents were abusive or toxic, I would be more inclined to say leave them out. But it sounds like they’re just somewhat anti-social and not as enthusiastic as you’d like about your fiance. To me, that does not warrent excluding them from the wedding when the other parents are invited. That’s a drastic step that makes a clear statement. It could be the nail in the coffin of whatever relationship you currently have. If you’re ready for that, you’re allowed to do it but should go in with your eyes open to that consequence.

Post # 5
545 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

I’d suck it up and invite both parents. They will probably behave well for one day since it is your wedding.

Post # 6
152 posts
Blushing bee

The parents don’t need to get along or get to know each other.   It honestly is not neccesary in any way.   My two familes are 100% seperate from each other by choice.    I find its actually much easier that way.    So I wouldn’t take that they don’t like each other into consideration at all when making my decision.

Post # 7
330 posts
Helper bee

lorzzzzzz :  first: I love my Future Mother-In-Law but if we were nice enough to tell her we planned to elope rather than spring it on her after the fact, and she tried to guilt trip us and make it about her, I wouldnt hesitate to elope. Weddings are a family event if one chooses but they are ultimately about the couple.


Second: I come from a very dysfunctional household and am distant with my father, a little more close to my mom (not super close by any means). I want to elope when the time comes but my SO wants a wedding so I am giving him that enjoyment. Note: I’m having a wedding because my SO wants it, NOT for my Future Mother-In-Law or anyone else. Keeping my dysfunctional/ distant family in mind. I love my future in laws almost like they were my real parents. They’ve shown me love and what parents are supposed to be. But I could never, ever have a wedding where I invited my inlaws without my parents. Even if your distant, it will crush them. Now if they abused you and you cant stand the sight of them that’s different. 


It sounds like your parents may be jealous of your relationship with future in-laws. Or maybe they really dont like them. Either way, if you explain to your parents the concerns and tell them they must get along or tolerate the in-laws then they probably will. No parent would want to ruin their kid’s wedding day. Bee, in theory you can do whatever you want. But in reality, you cannot invite his parents and not yours to your wedding. No matter how small it is.


One last note: it sounds like your Future Mother-In-Law is displaying signs of an emotionally manipulative mother in law. They are sweet and charming until you want something they dont want. You dont owe her a wedding. Stay weary of further signs. 

Post # 8
754 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2018 - City, State

I would just do a small wedding ceremony with immediate family. They can mingle amongst themselves, no drama for not inviting anyone. It sounds likeits gonna be worse to do anything else. ?

Post # 9
168 posts
Blushing bee

A couple things stood out to me here. One, your parents and your in-laws don’t have to be friends. As long as they aren’t rude to each other, why do they need to get to know each other? I don’t know any couples whose parents went out of their way to get to know each other before the wedding. As long as everyone’s nice to one another, I see no problem. I also agree with a PP who said your in-laws sound a little manipulative. It’s great that they’re nice to you and treat you well, but they shed TEARS when you merely mentioned elopment before you were even engaged? Bee, that’s manipulation and guilt-tripping. I definitely wouldn’t cancel the idea of eloping just because his parents guilt-tripped you. It’s YOUR wedding and it’s about the two of you. At the end of the day, it should be what you guys want. Not his parents. 

I say elope if that’s what you want. If you decide to have a wedding, don’t exclude your parents. TBH it doesn’t sound like your parents have really done anything wrong. Not showing as much interest as you want them to show is not a crime. Many parents are like that. Also it sounds like they’re jealous of your easy connection to his parents. If they have social anxiety they may struggle to connect with you, so seeing you get on with your in-laws so easily may make them sad and envious. If your parents aren’t bad people, don’t exclude them. 

Post # 10
131 posts
Blushing bee

MrsWiggles :  “you don’t owe anyone a wedding.” OMG! This is the perfect way to say it. I am borrowing this phrase. My fiancé thinks we owe everyone and their mother an invite because “well they did this or that for me…so.” We’ll…yeah…no.

Post # 11
24 posts
  • Wedding: November 2017

Agree you dont owe a anyone a wedding or should you be guilt tripped into one by either side of the family. Elope first and share the moment with just you and your fiance. Then throw a small party, have a little ceremony (maybe a friend can “officiate”) and say your vows and celebrate with family members and a few close friends. 

Post # 12
643 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

lorzzzzzz :  Ah bee, this sounds all too familiar. Long story short I have a very similar situation and we’ve decided to do a destination elopement. Of course both sets of parents are a bit disappointed but I can’t imagine the two sides pretending to be civil on our special day. His parents definitely dislike mine and my parents are awkward and know that I’ve talked bad about them to his parents (I never straight up told them but when you have to move out of your parent’s house into your boyfriend’s parents house due to abuse it’s pretty clear that some things have been said). I say do what makes YOU happy. We are running off to Hawaii and then having a family party when we get back. Only a fraction of the stress and cost that would be involved with a traditional wedding. Even writing that makes me feel relieved. Feel free to message me if you wanna talk it out! 

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