My mom is making my wedding about her…

posted 5 months ago in Emotional
Post # 17
3492 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

I think you may just need to tell your mom that it is really important to you to have the wedding you and your Fiance want. Tell her you are grateful for her offer and want her to be involved in the wedding, but you are going to do your wedding the way you want to, and she is free to contribute to THAT wedding, or not. If she chooses not and your in-laws are offering, take them up on it. Their child is also getting married so there’s no reason you should be open to being gifted money from your family but not his. You just have to stand up for yourself and your wedding. This day will be the first day of your marriage, it should be as much a reflection of the two of you as possible.

Post # 18
8917 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

DeniseSecunda :  People can choose what to give as a gift. Some parents  say “send me the bills, I don’t care how the money is spent” and that’s their gift. Some parents say “We’ll pay for a church ceremony and a buffet reception for these 80 people and up to 80 more that you and your in-laws can choose” and that is their gift. If that’s not what the couple wants then they’re free to decline. It’s the height of entitlement to think someone should just fork over tens of thousands of dollars with no input into how it’s spent. 

Post # 19
1568 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2017

kate01199 :  you’ve lost sight of the forest for the trees regarding all of the advice you’ve been given.


The point is: you can and should have the wedding you want. In order to get it, you have to pay for it on your own or allow your generous fiancés parents pay for it. That’s it. Decline the money from your mom and move on. 

Post # 20
672 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I can actually understand why your mom wants to invite people who have invited them. On the other hand I understand you not necessarily wanting those people there as they don’t mean anything to you. But you either let her pay and add those people, or you don’t. I would advise against taking the money from your future in-laws instead. No matter how much of a pain you think your mom is being, she is your mom and it’s likely that your future in-laws do not and will not love you in the same way. 

I do agree with the comment someone made about what you said about certain venues. 

Post # 21
198 posts
Blushing bee

Do you generally have a good relationship with your mother or do you find yourself at odds often?   If its good, I think its worth it to have one more discussion with both of your parents and you and your fiance..     Ask to meet with them and ask them kindly to not speak until you have fully explained your position.    Tell them that you and your fiance would like a small wedding (make sure you let them know that this would be the case even if they had $100,000 to contribute)    Tell them both that even though you love them and have heard their requests to add all these people, that you are not going to do so.    Do not wiggle, do not prevaricate just tell them flat out.     Ask them, would you still be comfortable contributing knowing that his is OUR final decision?


Then the ball is in their court.    They will either still want to be involved or they will be upset.   If they are upset, do you feel strongly enough about this to stick to your guns … no matter the fall out?    If not, think in advance, what compromises are you willing to make ?    And then think, if they will not accept these compromises what will you do now?     Because with a stubborn mom this could result in estrangement.   I hope not



As to some of the previous comments, some parents gift weddings, some don’t.    Just because someone helps pay, they may not see it as a gift.   It doesn’t really matter what we here think or even the bridge/groom.   The only thing that matters is the mindset of the person with the money.    As always, if you don’t like their mindset…you can always decline to accept it.

Post # 22
672 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

Oh and also keep in mind that many of us didn’t even have either set of parents offer to pay that much (didn’t expect them to) yet had a mother-in-law who made demands anyway. It’s easy to say no pay no say but it’s awkward to enforce 

Post # 23
453 posts
Helper bee

I certainly wouldn’t place paying for a wedding in the same category as a Christmas or birthday gift as some seem to want to do. Maybe I’m not nearly as fortunate as others, but I’ve never been given a Christmas or birthday gift that amounted to tens of thousands of dollars like weddings frequently do. I find it incredibly entitled to expect someone to just hand over that amount of money to pay for a party that the couple really should be paying for themselves and then to not even consider their opinions for the event.

In this case the mother is overstepping and OP and her fiance should decline her contribution and pay for their wedding themselves.

Post # 24
1350 posts
Bumble bee

Daisy_Mae :  I simply do not agree at all that it’s entitled or anything else of that ilk. It’s not a loan if they’re GIVING. Giving means the thing given now belongs to a new person; it has a new owner. It makes no difference if it’s $10 or $10,000; the gift now belongs to another person. IF the “giver” wants to say that this isn’t a gift, that it’s to be used for such-and-such, fine. Then it’s not a gift; it’s something else. But myriad people–my parents and my husband’s parents included–gave it as a gift and let us make our own decisions about our–not THEIR–wedding. If they wanted it to be for something specific, then it’s not a gift. The money isn’t ours–it’s still theirs, and we’re just the ones going into the stores to purchase things with THEIR money. But that’s not a gift. 

So if someone says they’re giving you a GIFT, then it’s not entitled at all to say that you ought to have control over the gift, as you are now the one in possession and the owner of the thing. 

Post # 25
250 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2015

Also, no one has mentioned how your in laws will feel regarding those additional 80 names by your mom. Will they be offended that they didn’t get to add to the guest list and add their entire social circle and relatives  if you go the direction of letting your mom help pay?

You’re not looking at 120 person wedding but a 200 person wedding if your in laws add people to list too which I would assume they would want to do if your parents want to include everyone on their side. 

Post # 26
2666 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2017 - Courthouse

I wanted to add on bc no one has seemed to said anything regarding the guest list and how that affects your day. 

My husband and I are very much like you guys. We don’t like being the center of attention, we wanted as little people as possible with as little fuss. My parents totally understood and I’m one of 13 cousins on my dad’s side and second youngest of 7 on my moms (so people are a little over weddings by now lol). My husband was the first child and first grandchild getting married. We knew his family would want something bigger. It was absolutely not up for discussion. Because this was so critical, we decided we would pay for everything on our own. We had just closest family and friends and I’m so glad we could do everything the way we wanted. 

I just really advise for you both to stick to your guns on not inviting too many people. Weddings are stressful enough. Don’t put too much stress by random people invited to your wedding! 

Post # 27
2196 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: March 2017

If I were you, I’d just pay for myself so that I could avoid all the drama. My husband and I got married at a very low cost (it was an enlopement ceremony). Since it was our money, we did everything the way we wanted it. 

Yea, it would be great if your mom just gave you the money no strings attached, but she isn’t. So you just have to make the decision about what is important to you. 


Post # 28
1016 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 1983

Your mother bought herself a wedding. It’s hers. You want your own wedding? Give her back her money, and take back the wedding. 

Do not attempt to negotiate with terrorists. She bought this wedding. She owns it. She’s not going to give up anything she really wants. Don’t even bother to talk with her, esp. since you already have a much better offer from your fiance’s parents.

Just a thought: How about having the wedding you can afford? All yours and his, just the way you want it, paid for by the two of you?

Post # 29
4535 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

kate01199 :  your mum is NOT suddenly going to have an epiphany that she is being difficult and trying to run the show. You also know that if you decline her money and take up the in-laws offer to help, that even more shit will hit the fan. If you want to have the wedding you want and avoid excess drama and keep everyone semi on side, your only option is to pay for your small intimate wedding yourselves.

I know that’s not the advice you want to hear and you want a solution that allows you to take gifted money from everyone and host a wedding you want without upsetting the apple cart but realistically that won’t happen in this scenario. You gotta play the hand your dealt in life… 


Post # 30
517 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

It seems your parents are willing to pay for the wedding they want, not the wedding you want. Most my friends that have had large wedding say they wish they had smaller ones. Have the wedding you want.

Fh and I are having 45ish guests, we both have large extended families but want immediate family only which is about 13 people each, and 20 of our friends. Having 45ish guest allows us to spoil our guests and have the wedding we want. Quality over quantity with people we actually want to celebrate with.

It seems like you have handed her the reins. Why did you let her add 80 guests? It seems like you need to communicate with your Mom better and be assertive. Mom this is the guest list. We are not inviting anyone else. I do not want an all inclusive wedding. I found the venue I want.

Then she can make her choice in reguards to if she is going to pay for the wedding you want or if the money is contingent on her vision.

“It’s not about the location, it’s about the people there with you.”

Yes, it is. Which is why we carefully chose these 40 people to spend the day with in a location that I love.

“All of these people will give you money, so why not invite them?”

Because I don’t care about their money. I’m not inviting them for cash, I am inviting them becasue I care about them and want to spend my wedding with them.

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