Post # 1
On Day One of our engagement, there was a family Christmas party. My fiancee has a large close family. There were 110 people there. Future Mother-In-Law says we have to invite everyone at that party (110 people) and that I need to adapt what I want for our wedding (my parents are paying) to accomodate because all these people HAVE TO BE invited. She saw the look on my face and said if we would get married at her church in February, it would be a lot less expensive for my parents. My Fiance loves his family and his parents are very manipulatie of him. How do I help him and still have the wedding I have dreamed of. I have a $20,000 budget for the reception. I have found the options, but Mother-In-Law is telling Fiance that just wont work for them. How do I take care of this without making a miserable engagement period. I want advice ahead of the curve.
Post # 2
Just give her the facts: “FMIL, the nicest venues in our price range can only accommodate 150 people. 30 in the bridal party and immediate family, 50 guests for your fam, 50 for mine, and 10 of our friends. We have to keep the costs under $X per head.”
Have this discussion with your Fiance beforehand so you’re in agreement with the plan, and tell her when you’re both present. Maybe she’ll see sense and offer to pony up for her friends. If you feel pressure from her, say “We’re going to host a nice wedding, not a large wedding. I’m not willing to skimp on food/venue/flowers/whatever, or rent out a high school gymnasium to fit more guests.”
Post # 3
It’s very unfair and inconsiderate for your Future Mother-In-Law to tack on 110 guests to the wedding when she has zero financial contribution. Why do only your parents have to pay? Isn’t her son getting married too? Send Mother-In-Law a quote for the 110 extra guests that she plans to invite, and say “Sorry Mother-In-Law, since my family will be paying for the wedding, we will choose whether to accomodate them or not, UNLESS you decide to help us out and pitch in with these extra guests. I have tried to look at other options, but they didn’t work for you. It’s up to you to decide not whether you want to support us financially, or stick to my options“.
A pity your Fiance is very malleable. You need to steer control in your hands. If you let her walk over you now, she will walk over you all your married life. This is your wedding, not FMIL’s wedding to say what doesn’t work for them, expecially when she has ZERO contribution. Let her gnash her teeth all she wants.
Post # 4
First, you and your Fiance need to be on the same page and have a united front. He needs to be the one standing up to his mother. Then decide on your guest list together. I don’t necessarily think there needs to be even amounts for each side, but I do think it needs to be a fair distribution of guests. You and your Fiance both need to be happy with the guestlist. If you can’t invite all of FI’s family, I would do it in circles (i.e. invite all aunt and unlces or none of them. Don’t pick and choose, because that will just lead to hurt feelings.) And just inform your Future Mother-In-Law that unfortunately you are unable tio accomodate such a large group. If your Future Mother-In-Law throws a fit, you both just need to be firm and don’t engage. If you are open to inviting everyone if money wasn’t an option (and also a little petty like me), I would tell Future Mother-In-Law that it will cost $x amount to invite everyone, and if she would like to contribute that, you would be happy to invite them.
The most important thing though is that your Fiance needs to be the one standing up to his mother, not you.
Post # 5
I think I’d avoid taking money from Future Mother-In-Law if possible; “no pay no say” and all that.
Agree with PP that you need to get your Fiance on board and present a united front. Shut her down straight away each time it comes up, and if needs be, don’t discuss it with her at all.
I’ve heard horror stories about family input on weddings, and have been surprised about how smoothly a lot of ours has gone. But I think a large part of that is that nobody but us knows the full guest list and we don’t discuss the full nitty gritty details with anybody.
Post # 6
I had the others trying to add guests. You definitely need to talk with your Fiance and get him on the same page, because this will only progress and get worse. Your inlaws may even start trying to invite people outside of you through text and word of mouth, which makes it really difficult to plan and accurately count up RSVPs. So, you need your Fiance to talk to his mother, ideally he should do it apart from you. It can go something like this, “Mom, I know at the party you mentioned that hallie2018 and I will need to include all the party guests. Unfortuantely, we will not be able to host that many, but we’ll be sure to do our best to include those closest to us. Thank you for being understanding.”
Post # 7
Do you want to lie down before the demands of your Future Mother-In-Law, which will never stop? Do you want to marry someone who is easily manipulated by his parents? If you and he can’t take adult charge of your wedding, you won’t be able to take adult charge of your life together.
Post # 8
Mother-In-Law overstepping boundaries. I’d love to see where your Fiance is on this. If he caves easily to his parents and will not stand by you, you have an Fiance problem not a Mother-In-Law problem. So first thing is to do as the other pp’s have suggested and create boundaries. This will be a test of your and FI’s relationship.
Also, get thee to DWIL Nation! Lots of advice from the experienced….They won’t hold any punches either so be prepared.
Post # 9
agreeing with @orangeblossomhoney said. This is your first test to make a united front and draw the boundary line to your ILs. I also think that since Fiance is easily manipulated by Mother-In-Law, then after making united front before the convo, you probably need to say this together to her. Otherwise if he is tasked with talking to his mom while you are not there, he will be manipulated to say yes to whatever she wants.
Post # 10
I’m of the opinion that absurd requests should be treated as absurd requests. She’s demanding that you throw a party for her 110 family members. Lol. She’s demanding you and/or your parents give her $10k (assuming 100/head). Even at the cheap party she wants it to be, if it’s $10/Head she’s demanding you give her a grand just because she wants it. This doesn’t merit a serious response. Act exactly like she just told a joke. Because she did.
If your Fiance is entertaining these silly demands then you have a Fiance problem, not a Mother-In-Law problem.
Post # 11
Tell her what you can afford. Since she is not paying she does not get to make the rules. If she wants to pay to cover the extra heads let her.