(Closed) Need Ideas to Cut the Guest List

posted 5 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
2946 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

I am kind of the same boat.  My dad is 1 of 9 and my mom is 1 of 4.  Just getting out to my cousin’s and their children brings up the guest list to 150 people.  Because of this, none of my parents aunts and uncles are invited to our wedding, and the only cousin of my father that is invited has been our neighbor since before I was born, and is invitied under the neighbor policy, not a family policy.

I would look at limiting to your mom’s aunts and uncles and thier spouces.   Inviting her cousins is a nice, but it branchs out your guest list too quickly.  As long as you have a clear line as to where you stoped inviting people, no one can get that upset. 

Post # 3
1231 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

I think you’ve found the perfect solution and 120 guests is a reasonable number.  Unless you’re paying 200$ per person and refuse to cut that to 100$ per person to invite 240 guests, it’s a simple matter of not having the money.  You’d like to, but you can’t.  The end. I wouldn’t take your mother’s disappointment personally, disappointment is a part of life.  I’m disappointed I don’t drive a Ferrari, boo hoo!     

Post # 5
8576 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

We are inviting a whopping 4 children, 2 of them won’t even really be “children” as they will be 17 at the time. Another is a flower girl, and I’ll find a use for the last one.. maybe an usher?

We aren’t giving everyone a +1, but couples and those in long term relationships will get a +1.

We are inviting some coworkers, but only the ones we are close to, and of our, our bosses.


Post # 4
6221 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House

I put it this way to my Father-In-Law: A wedding is not about celebrating your life with everyone who is related to you. A wedding is about celebrating a relationship with the people to whom that relationship is meaningful in some way. If you don’t know her cousins very well at all, there’s no reason they should be invited, especially on your dime- not because they’re not part of the family, but because watching you get married to your fiance won’t be meaningful to them!  Tell your mother that you are only inviting people who have contributed a lot to your life or to your relationship, because without them you wouldn’t be the person you are marrying your fiance. Your wedding is NOT a family reunion- but you can definitely help her organize one if that’s important to her!

“Mom, I know you really wanted all of your family to be invited to my wedding, but the facts are that we just can’t afford it. Even if we could, watching me and Joe get married really won’t be very meaningful to them. They really don’t know me at all, and they know even less about my relationship. I know it would be exciting for you to have them all in one place, and I would love to help you organize a family reunion so that you can still have that. However, my wedding isn’t the time or place for that, and that’s just the way that has to be.”

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  MeiFrancis.
Post # 8
1634 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Only engaged couples? One if my husband’s bestfriends has been with his girlfriend for 9 years and they have children together. I hate the engaged ” rule” because not all committed relationship look like that.

The only rule I used was “nearest & dearest” and “those I wanted to celebrate with.” Create your guest list. Stop talking about your wedding to people that aren’t paying for it or not invited. Shutdown convos when your wedding comes up. Once you make up your mind don’t entertain people trying to squeeze themselvesin.

Post # 9
547 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

I think mother’s first cousins are too far out. I would stick to your aunts, uncles, and cousins. You said it yourself-you barely know these people and your Fiance lost his job. Are you kidding me? You should not have to pay for those people.

You invite your family (immediate, then aunts uncles and cousins) and friends (allow plus ones as you see fit until your guest cap)

Your mother can throw her family reunion another  time. 

Post # 10
6221 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - The Liberty House

MissusMarcin:  can you help her organize a different event- like a cookout or a potluck- to get everyone together?

Post # 11
112 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

You can do immediate family, no kids and close friends. I had to deal with the mothers and their family reunion wishes. As i told advised by friends and family….it is YOUR wedding. At the end of the day after she’s had a good laugh with 2nd cousin sally and they have all gone home you are left with the bills. One day of debt isnt the way to start your new life. Maybe you can offer to send out announcements to the family who wasnt invited.

Post # 12
2375 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

My response would be “it costs $ for each person. Currently, we can afford 120 guests. If you would like additional invitations beyond what you have already received, it will cost you this much per head.” 

Once she starts doing the math, I think she’ll have a change of heart. Or she’ll hand you cash, and everyone will be happy.

Post # 13
2512 posts
Sugar bee


Invite only the ones who know you and your Fiance, who you’ve at least talked to in the last year and tell your mom to throw a family reunion later.

Post # 15
1244 posts
Bumble bee

MariContrary:  +1

I’m having a difficult time comprehending what your mom doesn’t understand about not being able to afford more people. Seriously, I’m not being cute. “We can’t afford it,” is a discussion stopper. Especially if she’s not contributing financially. The way to open the discussion back up is for her to pay for the people she wants. 

I also like MeiFrancis‘ idea of having your mom host a different family gathering as a way to include everyone that she wants and that she pays for. Otherwise, it just can’t happen, no matter how much she may sulk about it. : /

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