Post # 1
I have been engaged since October to my boyfriend of almost 3 years. He is almost 50 and I am early 30s. I really love him but lately I have been feeling unsure about everything. A little background: we met when we were both in difficult financial situations. I had lost my car and my boyfriend had lost his job. He helped me out by driving me places and I helped him out by being his support while he was finding a job. I eventually got a car (paying for it myself) and he eventually found a job. The thing about his job is, though it pays A LOT of money, he pays about half of his monthly income to his ex for her child support and alimony. He has a child with special needs, and he will have to take care of him for the rest of his life. This includes financially because his child will never work. Also, this means he can never have another child. I feel like I like him enough that I am ok with that. I support myself completely financially (though I recently moved in with him, and don’t pay rent).
When we got engaged, my fiance still could not really afford a big ring. He got me a ring that cost a small amount and has visible inclusions. I was still fine with it. I can fix the ring part myself. The problems have started because both of our families are upset about the financial situation, and maybe with us being together. He did not tell his mom anything about my parents, which led her to tell me a lot of unkind things about how I don’t have money. My parents actually do have quite a bit of money, but I don’t bring it up. My parents ask me why I want to be with someone older, whom I can’t have kids with, who is not doing well financially etc. My dad tells me he will give me a ridiculously small budget for the wedding because he doesn’t really think it’s a good idea. My boyfriend’s mom discovers this and it does not go well.
I am at the point where I don’t even want to get married anymore. I can’t have a remotely nice wedding for the price my dad is willing to pay. We live in one of the most expensive areas of the country and it’s just not possible to respect the social level of our families on the budget my dad quoted me. I suggested eloping to my boyfriend, but he said he really wants our families to be there if we get married. My dad said we could just keep the (albeit small) amount of money he was planning to spend on the wedding and put it in the bank, but my boyfriend refuses this idea.
Do you think I should just call off the wedding?
Post # 3
What’s more important to you a wedding or a marriage?
You language sounds like a wedding is the most important thing to you. If it’s not, you should reframe your mind a bit here.
Our parents aren’t offering us anything – but that doesn’t mean we’re calling off the wedding it just means we’re adjusting our celebration to be something we can handle and be done with it.
If you think your dad’s money is a slight I might even give it back to your dad. He’s aware of the social consequences of not giving you the money required to throw a lavish wedding so don’t worry about him. Focus on your union and your future together and try to take our mind of your parents.
Post # 4
I love wedding planning, but I honestly don’t care if I have a wedding. I would be happy to keep the money and let it earn interest (since I really can’t have a nice wedding as the other alternative). But he and his family are not ok with that.
Post # 5
Do you feel like you need to have a wedding reception to please your fiancé and his family? What do you and your boyfriend want?
Post # 6
You can have a nice wedding on a small budget. Hundreds/thousands of brides do it every year! The other option is that you can pay for your own wedding or at least contribute to the generous amount that your father is giving you.
Post # 7
I find it difficult to give advice on this one when we obviously have such different attitudes.
The age difference between my Fiance and I is about the same as the age different between you two. However, we’re a bit younger (I’m in my 20s) and therefore probably earn less. We also both come from reasonably well-off families, although my family is better off than FIs and can easily afford pretty much anything I throw at them wedding-wise.
…BUT, I never once assumed that my parents would pay for my wedding. I never asked them for a financial contribution, either. I was perfectly prepared to pay for it myself and keep things to a tight budget. My parents did of course offer to pay, but I am grateful for anything the wish to offer me and work with them to keep things within my given budget. In fact, I’m aiming to come in well under budget which would still give me more than I could have ever afforded myself.
For me, the most important part is getting to marry my Fiance. The rest is just details. I obviously want everyone to have a nice day, but as long as they’re fed and watered then the rest is just niceties.
I would suggest re-evaluating your priorities. If your parent’s contribution doesn’t go as far as you would like, why don’t you make up the rest yourself? Work within your budget. Anyone who thinks you have been to cheap can just get stuffed, to be perfectly honest. The day isn’t about impressing stuffy old relatives…
Post # 8
At almost 50, a man really should be able to pay for a wedding instead of asking for help from parents. Throw the wedding that you can afford, even if it means waiting.
Post # 9
I’m mostly concerned that you said you “like him enough” vs. “love him enough.”
Think about if he is the man you want to be with 100% no matter what. If so, everything else will fall into place.
Post # 10
I feel like I like him enough that I am ok with that.
This is the warmest, most passionate statement you make about him in your entire post. Regardless of any financial issues, it just sounds to me like you’re lukewarm about the marriage itself, and the wedding issues are an extension of that.
Post # 11
If you’re not sure, don’t marry him. You can love someone and they can be a good person and it does not mean you should marry them. A marriage is about more than just love – it is also about compatability and about being a team that is better together than apart. Are you sure you two are compatible? Are you sure your life will be better in the long run if you are together? It sounds like you are making a lot of compromises here and that’s not always a good thing.
Post # 12
Based solely off this post, I don’t think this is the guy you should be marrying. You only said you “like” him not love him. Your parents don’t want to put out the money for your wedding because they think it won’t work out, and I think they’re on to something there.
Post # 13
I don’t get it… you’re an adult, but you expect your Dad to pay for your wedding? Why not pay for your own wedding, and tell everyone else to suck it up? Honestly… I’m just going to say it… you seem to have these strange preconceived notions of money, whereby only people with big bucks can ever have kids or get married. I’m not telling you to be irresponsible and have more children than you can support etc, but people get married and raise families on very low budgets every day. They do it with hard work and selfless behaviour.
Is there something I’m missing here?
Post # 16
I was going to comment about the “like” statement as did ProfessorGirl ….and I am of the same opinion, it seems like you ‘like’ him but don’t love him so I would say don’t marry…you would only end up hurting eacother in the long run.