(Closed) I don't want to be a gift-grabby bride!

posted 3 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
721 posts
Busy bee

Personally, I wouldn’t do a dollar dance or invite anyone that I didn’t honestly want to celebrate with me, gift or no gift.

I think you should explain your feelings to your FI. I wouldn’t frame it as your FI and FMIL are greedy, just that you feel greedy. Your feelings on this should be something that your FI respects. If you aren’t both comfortable, then you shouldn’t be doing something unless one or the other actively consents to compromise. This applies to anything.

Post # 3
2514 posts
Sugar bee

amanda.417:  DO NOT invited people assuming they just won’t come…that never goes well.

And if you’re uncomfortable with the Dollar dance don’t do it.

Post # 4
2450 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

jamb:  “Personally, I wouldn’t do a dollar dance or invite anyone that I didn’t honestly want to celebrate with me, gift or no gift.”<br /><br />

this this this

Post # 5
800 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2015

Following because I am having a similar problem with the dollar dance!  FI’s family does this at weddings and I’ve been informed it is a tradition.  I am uncomfortable with the idea but don’t want to offend his family.

I find it tacky, gift grabby, and objectifying (even though it doesn’t have to be, I just personally would feel that way if I had to dance with men for money).  My side of the family has also never heard of this and I hate to say it, but I would be embarrassed to do this in front of them.

But I can’t tell my FI that, it sounds terrible!  So, no advice, just commiseration.  I’m waiting to see if his family actually pushes for this.

Post # 6
9552 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

I, personally, don’t have a problem with a dollar dance as I’ve seen them at about half the weddings I go to and people generally enjoy them. We didn’t have one, because we didn’t particularly want to have one, but I don’t find them offensive, or antyhing like that.

I do really dislike the idea of inviting people who you don’t really want to come, either for gifts or because they invited you/your family to their wedding. Invite the people that you really want there. Period. Unless your FMIL is paying for the wedding, she doesn’t get to dictate guestlist (and even if she is, you guys should get the final say).

Ultimately, you and your fiance need to decide on these things and then present a united from to FMIL. And he does get a say in what happens, but so do you. Maybe compromise and let him do a dollar dance, if he really wants to, but keep the guest list reasonably small. Or ask him about why he wants these things and if he’s okay with those motivations.

Post # 7
3830 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

amanda.417:  You have to stick up for yourself here. My FMIL tried to get me to have email RSVP’s. I didn’t like the idea and had already drafted my invites. So i told her no. She tried to get me to have her daughter as MC, we said NO (and thank god, she was not a good MC at our friends wedding). 

If YOUR day and i agree with everything you said. A wedding is not a fundraiser.   

Post # 8
3830 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

FWIW i have NEVER EVER seen a dollar dance in real life. I would be completely confused and shocked if i saw the bride and groom asking for money like that or whatever it is. 

Post # 9
734 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

amanda.417:  We were asked by our DJ if we wanted to do the dollar dance, we said no as we felt very uncomfortable and he said in our area, its usually only certain cultures. I’ve never seen one in real life but honestly I haven’t been to any of these cultures weddings either. As per people sending gifts just because they are invited to a wedding isn’t common in my area either. If you decline, you decline but it doesn’t mean you have to send a gift just because you get an invitation. If I were in your shoes, I would sit down with your fiance and have a conversation about why exactly you are getting married, maybe he just needs to be reminded its more about the love/celebration of your love with close friends/family and not about the money. People can get caught up in these things and forget why they are getting married in the first place. I would also go with my fiance to your FMIL’s place and saying “this is what we want, this is who we are inviting, we are open to iniviting some of your friends but we also want to keep the guest list to a minmum and invite those whom we want to have there and not because we want them to send a gift if they can’t make it” Good luck! 

Post # 10
963 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2015 - On a Cliff Overlooking the Bay, Florida


amanda.417:  I’ve never been to a wedding that has had a dollar dance I’ve only seen it on TV. 

As for the additional people on the guest list I have a similar situation my FMIL has a Medical Directors meeting the weekend of our weeding she obviously is excused but asked us to invite 25 people even though they won’t come because they will be at the meeting and would like an invite so they could send us something (her and their words not mine). However, now half of them are coming because the moved around a meeting or two for Monday so they can Fly here Fri night attend our wedding on Sat and Fly out Sunday to resume the meetings on Monday. I’m counting all of them as coming until I received my RSVP’s 

Post # 11
1628 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

amanda.417:  Is your FI from a culture where dollar dances and sending invites w/no expectation of people coming is common? In my culture (Asian) it is common to send invites and expect them not to come – but to save face, and you get a gift in return. I wasn’t comfortable with this either, but my parents insisted that was the case, and they were actually right, they just wanted the honor of inviting people. That being said my parents helped pay for the wedding so I couldn’t completely say no. If you are completely paying for the wedding then you do have more say. 

Post # 12
7653 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

amanda.417:  I just commented on another thread regarding dollar dances. They are common where I am at, so we did have one. I wouldn’t have done it if I was in an area where it was accepted or heard of.

As for your MIL inviting guests that won’t come anyway, I would stand up for myself on that one. My MIL had us invite these people who rented land from DH’s grandpa 20 YEARS ago, and she said they wouldn’t come, and guess what? They did, and we had absolutely no idea who in the heck they were. You’d be surprised who shows up. We met a lot of new people at our wedding.

Post # 14
268 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2025

amanda.417:  Dollar dances are pretty common in my area, and I always see people having fun (except when the groom gets pricked by a pin :P). We’re not having one, and I definitely would not invite a bunch of people I don’t want at the wedding just to get a few more dollars. If you don’t feel comfortable with sending invites to guests who aren’t going to attend, let your FI know and have him handle his mother (if you get into a direct argument with FMIL, it may/may not be detrimental to the relationship in the future) Also, what happens if all the invitees rsvp YES? How do you un-invite them? lol

As for the GL struggle, it’s a bit difficult, but you can be firm on the GL (To prevent our parents from inviting the whole town to our wedding, FI and I gave each of our parents XX number of seats, and they can invite whomever they choose to)

It’s frustrating.. good luck!

Post # 15
1576 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

DH’s biggest (well, only) wedding regret was giving into his mother’s wishes and inviting all the people she said we “had” to invite instead of cutting those people out and inviting people he really loved and cared about.

This meant that when MIL’s guests turned down their invites (and did not send gifts, btw – not that I care, but it’s relevant to the topic) we ended up with a smaller wedding than DH was hoping for and the faces he really wanted to see weren’t there. 

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