Is there a polite way to not invite people?

posted 10 months ago in Guests
Post # 31
Member
6004 posts
Bee Keeper

Your parents didn’t offer you money to use as you see fit, it’s not a gift to use as you please. They offered to host the kind of event they can be proud of and to pay for the guests you do not want to invite, because those guests are important to them. It happens all the time, just search the boards.

So, you have a few choices:

1) Pay for the wedding you want with your own money. It is what most adults do these days. 

2) Work toward some compromise that includes many of your parents’ guests but still gets the list down to 100 at a venue you are happy with and accept your parents’ money

3) Accept all of your parents’ money and all of their guests.

You do have a 4th option–you can elope. 

My mother was so horrified that I refused to invite a few people, including a neighbor who had been nasty to me my entire childhood, that she stole some invitations and invited them to the wedding I was paying for myself, without my knowledge. I only found out when the RSVPs arrived.

Post # 32
Member
1079 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2019

It sounds like your mom is offering money so that she can invite her guests, she’s not offering money for you to use as you wish for your wedding. It’s unfortunate for you, but if that’s the case, there’s really not much you can do. You can accept her money, but she is offering to pay for the guests only, so you would have to invite them. Or, you can not accept her money, and then you don’t have to invite anyone that you don’t want to. There is nothing wrong with not inviting people you don’t want to invite, but you also can’t accept money from your mom and not apply it how she is telling you she wants you to apply it.

First though I’d try to have a sincere heart-to-heart with her, while tensions aren’t running so high. Explain exactly why you don’t want those guests there, and talk to her about your vision for the wedding. Maybe she will come around, maybe not. But she’s your mother, so hopefully after a good conversation she will see your point of view and at least be willing to compromise.

Post # 33
Member
57 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

I have a similar thing too. We are paying for about 40% and our parents are doing the rest. We are having a small one (70) from early on we said to both parents they have 6 (nearly 10% of guest list each) people each they can invite outside of the obvious family members like aunts and uncles who are avtually in our lives. 

Thay way they are picking nearly 20% of the guest list. 

Post # 34
Member
1005 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

[Pardon my humor] You’re asking for a polite way to do things, but my head is buzzing with all of the impolite ways you can un-invite your “obligated” guests.

– You can elope, cancel everything and move on. Send everyone a card. This frees you of the tricky money problems that you face when there are several cooks in the kitchen.

– You can start a fight with the people you don’t want there. They’ll feel less welcome.

– You can move the wedding to a difficult place for these people to get to. Middle of nowhere, at least 3 hours from the closest airport. Ouray, Colorado is fabulous!

– You can change the date to a Wednesday morning brunch in the middle of the school year. Your bridesmaids might not appreciate this, but you’ll be surprised with who turns up.

Turning to a more serious tone:

– Stop letting your parents pay. Call the vendors they hired and cancel. You want full control, go get it.

– Figure out percentage-wise how big your slice of the pie is. Divy up the guest list that way. (like PP suggested). Tell your mom she only gets X number of people based on her slice of the pie.

– Take charge of addressing the envelopes. This is the last opportunity to apply control to the situation.

Post # 35
Member
1005 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

Apologies for the sass and lack of helpful information. I too have a guest list full of people that I really don’t need there. The temptation to go full she-devil is real.

Post # 36
Member
3503 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2019 - City, State

I’d have a conversation with mom about the max for your venue and say your dream is the venue you like and a smaller wedding. Hopefully she understands!

You and your SO should figure out your bare-bones guest list. How many people do YOU two really want there. Once you have that, subtract it from 100 so you can have your preferred venue and split that number in 1/2. Give your mom that number and say she can invite that many additional people. Give your future in-laws that same number for their additional guests. (hence why we split it in half) Once you recieve in-laws list, if there are any slots left, you can offer those to your parents (do this BEFORE invites go out!) 

 

Post # 37
Member
2534 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: November 2017

kate01199 :  Your parents are specifying that their money be used to invite these guests. You can always refuse the cash…

Post # 38
Member
1160 posts
Bumble bee

beethree :  Sorry for the thread derail OP but I really want to know the end of this story.  What did you do with these unwanted RSVPs?  What happened with your mother??

Post # 39
Member
361 posts
Helper bee

Realistically, how much time are you going to have to spend with this woman? I know you don’t WANT to invite her, but if you look at it this way, if you parents are footing the bill, it’s not costing you any money. Sure, it’s annoying to invite someone who was rude to you, but she’s not going to cause a scene. Make sure your wedding party and other friends know to spend as much time as possible with you, and use them to keep annoying guests away from you. Say to your mom, “I know how important it is to you that X, Y, and Z have a good time, so can you make sure to set them up sitting with someone who will keep them entertained all night?” This way, they’re distracted, they’re kept away from you, and you get to spend your time with the people you’d rather be with.

I think this is a much easier option than refusing cash from your family.

Post # 40
Member
6004 posts
Bee Keeper

livster :  I was furious. The nasty neighbor couple declined, thank goodness. She was actually very nice, but he was a drunken, rude bastard who had spent my entire childhood telling me and my mother that I would never be as good as any of his children and I did not want him at my wedding.

One half of another couple accepted and honestly, I didn’t really notice, it’s such a busy day. The other couple didn’t respond and didn’t attend, I only found out that she had even invited them much later. I had already invited many of my mother’s friends as I considered them a part of my extended family.

This is just one of a number of things that caused a distant relationship for a lot of years. 

I do think a lot of parents get caught up in reciprocating–if they were invited to a friend or relative’s child’s wedding they feel they need to invite this relative or friend to their child’s wedding. Some parents just like to show off. Some just want to celebrate a major milestone with the people who matter to them and have shared in the experience of raising this child to adulthood. As a parent, that one I can undesrtand.

OP is lucky, at least her parents are willing to foot the bill for these guests. Some parents expect this courtesy to be paid for by the couple getting married. 

Post # 41
Member
1160 posts
Bumble bee

beethree :  That does sound extremely infuriating. I am glad it worked out (for the most part).

OP, I do understand your wishes but agree with PPs that while your parents should put your desires above their own as it is your wedding, it doesn’t necessarily mean they will. Given the circumstances, your choices really are to accept their rules or decline their money. Good luck!

Post # 42
Member
1315 posts
Bumble bee

I’m going against the grain and saying even if they are paying, this does not mean they get a free pass to dictatethe the type of wedding you have, as long as it’s in reason. If you want a small, intimate wedding- be clear about it. Sit down and narrow down ‘her’ list of absolute musts. Sure, you want a guest list around 50. Is 75 doable? I think both of you need to make some compromises.

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