Post # 1
I’ve been lurking around the forums for a little bit and have finally decided to post. I guess I just need some advice from someone that has been in my shoes or (someone who hasn’t). Here is my complicated situation. I apologize for the length of this post.
I’ve been with my Fiance for 6 years and we have been engaged for two years now. We have changed are wedding date twice due to my finishing grad school. We were set to get married this month but I’ve put it on hold due to his family’s distaste for major parts of our wedding plans and his lack of support in standing up to his family.
First off, I’m not a person into the big weddings and due to the large amount of loans I have to pay off (and large is not even the word to cover it) I discussed with my Fiance that a big wedding was not in the cards for us. During the planning process we planned to get married at the court on a Friday (while most family was at work) and have an adult only dinner at a pretty nice restaurant which (had an area sectioned off that looked like any other wedding reception). However, the space was not very large to have many people there. By the way he has a large family. I have only 1 brother and 1 nephew, he has 7 brothers and sisters and over 20 nieces and nephews (it is even to the point where his nieces and nephews are married and have multiple children of their own).
Once the news was out on the official day everything began to fall apart. First, his family members disliked the fact that we were getting married at a courthouse (which by the way after I postponed the wedding, I found out all his family members did the same). I caved and ended up having my Fiance find a place that luckily said they would marry us for free (how could I say no) which was rare as every church in the area asked anywhere from 800 and up or said to get married at our own churches. We decided we wouldn’t get married at our churches as they are in heavily crime-ridden areas and my Fiance had just been robbed outside of his own church during the day. Then once they found out it was not a Catholic Church it still wasn’t good enough. Second issue happened when his sister decided to have her daughter’s baptism the day after our wedding. I felt like this was more of a thunder stealing situation as for Catholic baptisms do not occur on a Saturday and should be done before the child is 1 which her daughter already is. She also expected us to be there and was offended that we would be going on a honeymoon. She claimed she had plans for her daughter’s baptism before we changed our date yet when my Fiance told her the first time she never once said anything about it and waited over a month to tell him. The third and finally straw was when he let them know no kids were allowed except for my nephew that was in the wedding party. All h*ll broke loose once that was out and they did not even care that we didn’t have the money to pay for their kids. It was “you need to figure out how to pay for our children to attend, because we’re bringing them anyway.” All the while, my Fiance didn’t make it easier by saying we need to figure out a new plan. That’s when I told him it’s called off until you can stand up to them and let them know it’s one day, our day, not theirs.
He has been able to do so but I know things are not well with me and his family. I could care less if I get along with his family but it’s always been something that has been important to him. Right now he’s saying he doesn’t care to have them there but I know he’ll regret it in the end. Now when the new wedding comes along how in the world will I get through spending this important day with his family when they helped rip it apart?
Post # 3
i would just get married at the courthouse and tell thwm after the fact, if they get pissed tell them you couldnt afford to allow everyone to attend, so you decided it would just be the 2 lf you
Post # 4
We’ve thought to go that route after all. It’ll be sad not to have anyone there.
Post # 5
Go ahead to the courthouse – or the free church – which ever one you would prefer then for the dinner, is there a way where those wantignto bring children can pay for them? Unfair to assume that cost on yourself!
Post # 6
Well luckily the church has an area where we can have the reception. Since I had the reception place picked first I found out later.
I was thinking of having an hors d’oeuvres only or cake and punch only reception to afford everyone to be there. However now it’s dealing with the awkwardness. I also have to come up with enough ideas to entertain 20+ kids in a small church, which I have some but I know if they act up I will not be happy since I didn’t want them there to begin with.
Oh, btw all of them want to bring their children. Some weren’t offended while others might as well have said I told them to kill infants. However, they all want them there.
Post # 7
LD333…I’m sorry you’re going through this. I am/was in a similar situation. While I love children, I do not believe that young ones should be at adult functions. To me, it leaves an opportunity for the little angels to get into trouble. My family gets it, but Future Brother-In-Law and wife actually told us that they would just bring the baby (who will be 1) anyway. They involved FI’s parents and now a war has started. Future Mother-In-Law even went so far as to tell my mother that she was going to have a family photo taken at the church before the ceremony with my photographer. Um……no. That will not be happening. But….back to the matter at hand.
You need to take a big breath. It sounds like neither of you really know what you want. You seem to be bending and making concessions based on your budget. I really think that you and Fiance need to sit down and decide what the BOTH OF YOU want. Then…..decide on venues and a date. Once you have that, stick to that. Make an agreement on what is non negotioable and what each of you is willing to compromise on. Then hold your guns. For my Fiance and I, we are doing a childfree ceremony and then opening up the reception to all little ones. Would that be an option for you?If so, be sure to seat the little ones near their parents so that they can be attended to.
The thing with families is that they either feel that weddings are adult affairs which do not include children or they think it’s pretty much a family reunion. I know there are other brides out there that want everyone there….even the babies, but that is THEIR choice. It is up to the bride and groom. Noone……and I do mean NOONE should be bullying you around in regards to YOUR wedding that YOU are paying for. Good for you for standing up for yourself. If you can’t afford to include children o rmore guests, then don’t. The memories that you make that day will be yours to cherish for the rest of your life…so you need to make sure that you’re making yourself happy above his brothers and sisters who I assume have already had their day to make whatever decisions they wanted to. That is the most important thing. Not FI’s brothers and sisters who assume their children are the highlight of your wedding. Just know that they have the option to either get a babysitter and support their brother on HIS wedding day….or check to decline box. That is a message that needs to come from your Fiance. I applaud you for standing your ground (I did too….but it just makes it more difficult because you’re seen as a brdezilla to his family).
You will not be able to make everyone happy…no matter how hard you try. Do what is best for you and Fiance. Since his family seems to be too involved in the decision making process, the simple solution is to remove them from the equation. I would suggest you stop talking to them about the planning. When you have decided to send out the invitations, make sure that you only address them to who is invited. Be aware that some might choose not to attend…..and that’s okay as long as they respect your wishes. Basically what it comes down to is that they are your guests. They don’t get to make demands. I had to remind my Future Brother-In-Law of this….rather rudely unfortunately because for some reason, when it comes to weddings, families sometimes think that they are entitled to certain things.
If however…..you feel that Fiance would really regret not having the neices and nephews there, then that needs to be a discussion you both have…especially since you are including your nephew.
Good luck and keep us posted.
Post # 8
I’n not really agreeing with pp, sorry but In your post you say you could care less about getting along with Fi family. That attitude won’t be good for your fi or your marriage. Some families are tight and weddings to them are a family affair. I don’t agree with them about bringing the kids when they are not invited and I say you should stand your ground on it if it’s what you want. Having said that his family is part of him and you should mello out when it comes to dealing with them for his sake. I don’t know, that I could care less comment rubbed me wrong.hope it works out for everyone.
Post # 9
I know it’s important to get along with the FI’s family, but you also need to set a precedent that your wishes must be respected too. They need to understand that you are going to be a full memmber of the family too, and they can’t just ignore what you have to say. No one else shoul be able to tell yuo how to spend your money! Also, an important part of your relationship is that your Fiance must be willing to stand up for you… talk to him about that. Good luck!
Post # 10
I just wanted to put out there how I am feeling at the moment. It’s been 6 years of me not being particularly fond of his family because they obviously don’t respect me or their own brother for that fact but this whole situation has made it worse but I felt that I’m not marrying them I’m marrying my Fiance.
I have bent over backwards on everything they’ve wanted and have come up with ideas to include the kids now so that my Fiance won’t regret not having them there, so I feel I am supporting him. I don’t care to get along with them at the moment but with us being married I’ll have more time to work on that relationship with them. I probably should have added that but I was mad writing the post.
Post # 11
Yes, I agree that’s why I called the wedding off because my Fiance kept trying to make them happy. I could have dealt with his family if he didn’t keep coming to me saying to make changes to fufill their demands. He has talked with them now and has my back but I’m worried now of how awkward that day may turn out. Not only for me but for my family that knows what happened.
Post # 12
I’m sorry you had a similiar experience. Is it awkward for you now? That’s what I’m worried about.
His family was never included in the decision making. I never talked with them about the plans because I wasn’t around them enough to tell them since I was completing school. My Fiance didn’t include them in a way of oh this is what were planning what do you think. It was just simply telling them what’s happening and they blew everything up each time he told them.
I agree I’m sure they look at my as a Bridezilla when that wasn’t what I was trying to do. I feel like telling them how would you feel having enourmous amount of debt under your name and use money towards one day when it can be used for rent etc.!? LoL
Regardless of what my Fiance says I know he’ll want them there so I’m trying to make it affordable and have things for the kids to do so I won’t turn into a bridezilla that day if they are misbehaving during the ceremony, lol. I just feel like it’ll be phony that day and that’s what I’m afraid of because we will be the focus of the whole day and reason we are all together.
Post # 13
Wedding planning is stressful in and of itself. It isn’t awkward for me because I remind myself that THEY, not me, are the reason for this big fight. Future Brother-In-Law and his wife had no right to run to FI’s parents about something they couldn’t control. But truth be told….I’m really disappointed that FI’s parents even tried to intervene. Future Mother-In-Law and Future Father-In-Law have put themselves in a difficult position. How do you choose one daughter in law’s feelings on one day over the other daughter in law’s when it is HER wedding? A wedding is one of the most important days in a womans life. And then to that extent pit the brothers against each other over it? What they really should have done was refer them back to us. The only explanation that I can think of for their behavior is cowardice. Not that I’m unapproachable or anything, but they NEVER tell us anything. We get all of our information filtered through FI’s mother.
But anyhow…in response to your dilemma. As someone who can empathize with your money situation (I have alot in student loans as well), you need to try and not worry about it. There will always be a bill to pay, money will never stretch as far as you would like it to, etc… So don’t worry about that. Work out a payment plan with your lenders and just stick to it. Look into loan forgiveness programs. Seperate your student loans and debt from the wedding. Your debt is yours….and although a major source of stress for you….the wedding is not part of that. Talk to your Fiance and decide what you want. Go from there. If you choose to include the neices and nephews, then I would not be concerned with providing entertainment for them. Can you provide some cutesy coloring activities…..sure. I am doing some of that at my reception for the kiddos. The DIY section is full of good ideas. In fact, the DIY section is also good for making your wedding really nice for really cheap. If the conversations with his family are going to be a source of stress…..stop telling them. Send them a save the date card (which can be done cheaply or for free online through Evite) so they’ll know when it is and can make plans accordingly, set up a wedding website where they can go and get additional information and let that be that. When/if they ask why Fiance isn’t sharing information with them personally, have Fiance be honest and tell them why. This is supposed to be a time of joy….and you should enjoy the preparations you are making for your wedding. 🙂
If you decide to go the DIY route for some things, perhaps you can ask FI’s sisters to help you with pew decorations (tissue paper poms?). Or maybe you’d like to enlist their help in assembling the invitations. This might even double as a bonding event for you.
Good luck though….keep us informed. 🙂
Post # 14
Thanks for the advice. I agree about him not letting them know and just send the invite, etc. I’ve already made a website where they can go and get all the information.
As for seperating the student loans from the wedding… eh. I can never justify spending a lot of money for one day. It’s not about the wedding, it’s about the man I’m marrying. I could get married in a dumpster and be fine with it. The fact that I have to pay for my undergrad loan, grad loan, and my plans for going back and getting my ph.d is something very real. I know there will always be bills to pay but using my money to make others happy so I can be miserable worring about next month’s rent will never happen. I’ve worked out all I can for paying my loans and they are still expecting a large amount every month.
I plan on just providing small activities for the kids nothing large. I do like the fact that you’ve looked at your Future Brother-In-Law as the reason for the fight and not feeling awkward. I’ll definitely remind myself of that.