(Closed) How to Get Family to Understand

posted 9 years ago in Emotional
Post # 3
513 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

You just have to flat out tell them.

Then I would have your closest friends rally around you so that you have some supporters who will be committed to helping you & your fiance realize your vision.

My parents were not thrilled with certain aspects that they considered to be, different, or non-traditional (same here- no bouquet or garter toss, no wedding cake, no toasts…) If you are their only child, or only daughter, you need to give them time to re-frame their previous conception(s) of what they had envisioned your wedding to be. My parents eventually came around. They are still a little disappointed we aren’t doing certain things. But my FH & I, with gentle quiet persistance held our ground. And that is what you have to do! 

Don’t argue with them. Obviously they are of a different generation & come from a different idea of what a wedding should entail. Instead simply find a way to say in a firm manner "this is what speaks to the both of us. And this is what makes us feel comfortable and be true to ourselves… it isn’t for lack of respect of what you want, but it is representative of how we envision how we want to start our life together." type thing.

Just repeat it a thousand times to yourself- like a mini speech and try to stick it out. With us, certain things were still morphed into what they wanted. Choose your battles. But definitely, if there are certain ways you want something executed…. get friends to help you make it happen.

Just because it’s different doesn’t make it wrong. Or any less of significance.  

Post # 4
898 posts
Busy bee

Parents will be the hardest to convince, just because I think every parent has their own vision of what they want your life to be like…down to every milestone event. I’m having the same issue with my mother. She is envisioning a wedding that is similar to her huge event when she was married. So automatically, no matter what I tell her, she refuses to talk about it until she "has saved up enough to contribute"…that is, contribute to the wedding of HER dreams.

Amazingly, my grandmother is totally supportive of all of my ideas, and it has helped to have her as backup. I agree with everything that Sparkles said, just hold your position gently, and have those who do agree show their support. It will take time, but I think every parent will eventually "let go" for their child’s happiness. Good luck! Just be patient!

Post # 5
773 posts
Busy bee

The things you are worried about don’t really seem *that* untraditional or offensive to me.  For example, we didn’t do a garter or bouquet toss at my wedding, and no one, even the older guests, missed them.  No one even asked about it.  We used lavender petals instead of rice, and again, even our most old-school guests loved it!  And trust me, I’m talking old-school, Southern, way conservative folks here.  Trust me, EVERYONE likes it when the bride and groom add little touches of themselves to the wedding.


It’s possible to reach a compromise.  I wanted a small wedding, our families wanted a large one, so we settled on a beautiful venue that everyone loved and a guest list of 150.  I added all those personal touches that everyone adored, but kept things somewhat traditional (cake cutting, first dance, father/daughter dance, floral centerpieces, etc) to keep some of our older guests comfortable.  The most important thing to me was that every guest, regardless of background or age, feel welcome and comfortable at our wedding- that way they could all have fun!


I don’t know if you’ve left out some details or what, but I can’t imagine any of those things you mentioned offending your guests.  PM me if you want more info about our (non-)traditional wedding.  

Post # 7
2324 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

Are you and your fiance paying for the wedding? If so, then I think you’re more than welcome to do whatever you want. I am one of those people who feel that if your parents are paying, they get to have a little say in the way things go. So if they’re helping out, maybe let them tell you what is most important to them and work with them to incorporate somethings. GL!

Post # 8
14183 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2009

This is why i refused my parents’ money for our wedding. When they pay, they really do get to control more things than we’d like.

They wanted a tiny, 15-person wedding in jamaica. they were going to pay for everyone too. It would have cost more than the wedding i’m having now, and it ain’t a cheap wedding at all! It’s pretty traditional but there are lots of neat little things i’m throwing in there to keep it about "us". I’m doing little things to appease my parents. But i’m saying no to the veil on the very tippy top of my head. You know, with the big poof and it sticking up and everything! My mom had tears when I told her I wouldn’t wear it like that. LoL. It’s nice to have the comeback, "and this is why WE’RE paying for it, but thanks for your opinion, I’m still doing it my way" and that’s it. This almost backfired when my dad gave me an ultimatum about our father-daughter song, but it did work out for the best. Turns out he felt worse upsetting me than anything else. Dads secretly have guilty consciouses. 

By The Way, if you’re untraditional for the most part, why is this so surprising to them?  

Anyways, if you think you’ll be unhappy in the long run, you may have to refuse his money and do things your own way.  I’m really really glad I did. I’d be really unhappy with a destination wedding. So would my Fiance. Anyways, paying for it sucks, but it’s reality. 

Good luck! Your wedding sounds way fun and cool. I want to see your blue dress! And fyi, people will hunt you down at your own wedding no matter what. Go check out the offbeat bride for neat ideas!  

Post # 10
2695 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Hey there! I understand your problem.  We are in the process of booking our venue. My mom and dad weren’t exactly on board at first because it is an old WWII airplane hangar.  My Fiance is a pilot and I’m a theater person. MY Fiance thinks having a wedding with planes around is the coolest thing ever and is so excited!  I love dressing up and being creative with a theme and am looking forward to doing a 1940s USO theme for the reception. 

This weekend I went with my mom’s family on vacation and one of my aunts tells my mom she thinks the venue is the perfect blend of me and my Fiance.  I am so thankful for her comment because that has helped get my mom on board.

 So like the advice of the previous posts, get your other friends and family excited about the wedding and they will help get your parents excited too.

 Also, I don’t think that not throwing rice/birdseed is untraditional. Most places here in Texas don’t allow you to use these any more because they don’t want the clean-up. So lots of people use bubbles or sparklers.  I am thinking we will use paper airplanes!

And for the bouquet toss etc. like mentioned before just be up front about your ideas and be gentle to them.  They will come around. They will be just a little taken back by the different ideas at first. 

Good luck and have fun planning!

The topic ‘How to Get Family to Understand’ is closed to new replies.

Find Amazing Vendors