(Closed) How did you deal with confusing guest list etiquette?

posted 4 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
Member
8486 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

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breebee324 :  Etiquette does not say you need to invite in perfect rounds. It actually has very little to say about the guest list. Etiquette basically doesn’t care who you invite, it just encourages you to treat those you DO invite properly. For example, if one of your guests is married, it would be a dick move to not invite their spouse so etiquette says you need to invite the spouse. But again, that’s just treating people right. If you’re close with one cousin and haven’t seen the others in 20 years, there is no rule or “etiquette” saying you need to invite all or none. The cousins you haven’t seen in 20 years shouldn’t be expecting an invitation, so you not sending one shouldn’t be hurtful. The “invite in rounds” thing is guidance, not etiquette, to try to make things easier for you. But if it doesn’t fit your situation, don’t use it. 

Post # 3
Member
13920 posts
Honey Beekeeper

The “rules” actually made it easier for us,not more difficult. No backlash at all, that we ever knew about, anyway. 

We did not B list if that’s what you mean by inviting in rounds. We invited only children of siblings which is perfectly acceptable. We also made cutoffs by categories to avoid hurt feelings, i.e. first cousins, no second cousins. However we also chose a venue based on numbers, not the other way around. 

Post # 4
Member
1646 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

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breebee324 :  We didn’t invite in perfect rounds. I did not invite 2 of my aunts and uncles who are mostly estranged from the family. I would’ve invited my aunt’s kids but didn’t want to do so without inviting my aunt so I didn’t. We also only invited some of my dad’s cousins (the ones he is closest to) but not all but at his suggestion. His other cousins weren’t offended as far as we could tell, we only see them once a year. The biggest etiquette ‘faux paus’ we did was ask my brother in law not to bring his stepkids. All other kids were invited – it was a very kid friendly wedding. We didn’t say that he COULDN’T but asked him nicely. We don’t have a relationship with them because our relationship with his fiance (now ex) was rocky. If I could’ve gotten away without inviting her, I would’ve done that happily.   Plus, my Brother-In-Law kept insisting the kids would be fine hanging at the pool….when we pointed out that we were getting married at a bed and breakfast with no pool, he said they would be fine with the babysitter by the lake…..where the wedding was taking place. He just didn’t get it. My Mother-In-Law was supportive and that helped. He didn’t seem to be upset by it (i’m sure his fiance was but he was smart enough to not share that with us). Now they are broken up which is exactly what I predicted would happen. I’m glad I don’t have them in any of our ‘family’ pics (though still pissed his ex is in 1 or 2)

Post # 5
Member
7800 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

We invited in rounds on my husbands side – all aunts and uncles. Cousins only if they were legal age.

on my side it was pretty random, as I’m much close with some family vs others.

i didn’t get any direct flak about no kids from guests but I think Mother-In-Law got a bit. We had a few guests who declined to come and mil asked up literally until the day before if some certain kids could come. We still said no. 

Post # 6
Member
2353 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

We generally invited “in rounds” but there were a few situations where we didn’t. For example, we invited one of my mum’s cousins (plus his wife) and one of my FIL’s cousins (plus his wife) but none of our parents other cousins. We have relationships with these cousins and their families, whereas our parents have other cousins whom we haven’t even met and they are all very estranged from the rest of the family. We invited a great aunt on my mum’s side, a great aunt on my dad’s side and a great aunt on my MIL’s side but no other great aunts/uncles for the same exact reason.

We invited only certain children. Basically just those in the immediate family – my 3 underage siblings (who were also a part of our bridal party – plus my sister was 14 at the time so not really a kid anymore) and H’s 2 nephews – but we also let those with nursing infants know that their babies were welcome (only one couple took us up on this offer after their babysitter fell through the week of the wedding).

We didn’t really get any backlash. Our parents were happy with the guestlist and told us that they would have put the same people down. Most weddings in our social circle are child free so no one was really expecting their kids to be invited and I didn’t hear rumours of anyone being unhappy that we did have a few children there – plus, everyone knew who my siblings were and it was pretty obvious the other 2 little boys were H’s nephews. We had 1 couple decline because they couldn’t bring their son, but they were coming from interstate and we didn’t actually expect them to come even if they could bring him (they rarely attend family events). They didn’t kick up a fuss or anything, just clarified if their son was invited or not, sent their apologies and a very generous gift.

Post # 7
Member
1002 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

I am not inviting in rounds. I have an uncle I am close with- I am inviting him. I have aunts I have not seen in about a decade- I am not inviting them. We are choosing to invite the whole families of anyone we are inviting- BUT for us this does not substantially raise the guest list and we are choosing to have kids, that is our choice. 

I’m not worried about backlash because what are you going to do? Someone I don’t have a relationship is going to call and bitch about us not having a close relationship? 

Post # 8
Member
940 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2015

We mostly invited in rounds, but there were a couple of exceptions.

DH’s aunt had recently unfriended him on Facebook in a fit of pique, and we decided to take her actions at face value and conclude that she was no longer part of our lives (I had never met her anyway). DH’s uncle (aunt’s brother) pushed back a bit, but when we pointed out that she was the one who had cut us out, he accepted it.

My aunt also has three step-children. The younger one is fairly close in age to me and we grew up together, whereas the older two were already teenagers when my aunt married their father, and I never really knew them at all. So I invited one of her three step-children, and no one said a word about it.

Post # 10
Member
1002 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

now we’re being told that we’re being “too exclusive.”

 

Interestingly, the 14th Amendment of the US constitution does not apply to private events. If they want to have their own larger event they can.

 

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