Post # 1
I’m in the thick of my friends getting married and I just received my first Destination Wedding invite. Suffice to say it’s a location I don’t want to go to and will cost me a lot of money.
Last year I posted about how a friend was getting married on what was going to be the last day of my vacation and would require a 2 hour drive out of my way after I already was driving 6 hours to get home. A LOT of bees responded they would cut off a friendship for someone who “chose a vacation over a wedding” and I should “suck it up and go.” I ended up going and I had a great time and she was really happy I was there. No regrets.
This time the bride is a good friend that I hang out with fairly often but I wouldn’t consider her one of my “best friends.” Going to her wedding will be a much bigger expenditure of time and money. The problem is I don’t really have an excuse not to go it. She scheduled it after the bar exam and before results come out, I don’t yet have a job lined up (for the kind of work I want to do I probably won’t until after I get my bar results) but I have no loans and my business is doing well enough that I can afford a vacation. But I already had a trip planned this year with my best friend of 20 years to go somewhere we’ve talked about since we were kids (not during the same time of the DW). And even if I could feasilby do two trips, I don’t want to!! I want to see my friend get married and support her, but not to the tune of thousands of dollars. I also don’t know what job I’ll ultimately end up with and I will certainly have to stop my small business to work. I may be taking a pay cut. Did I mention I really just don’t want to go?
The problem is I’ve been on here long enough to hear all the responses when a friend gives a lame excuse for not attending a Destination Wedding. “You had a year to save!” “You bought XYZ or went on ABC trip but you don’t have money for my wedding???” “I’m not a priority for you??” “My wedding only happens once!” Yes, YOUR wedding is a once in a lifetime event. Just like all my other friends’ once in a lifetime events that I’m getting slammed with all of which require “once in a lifetime” expenditures of my time and money. Which I’m happy to dole out, within reason. I don’t think a Destination Wedding is “within reason.”
But on my last thread a year ago, the general response was “it would show me who my real friends are if you chose a vacation over my wedding.” And that’s not what I want!!! I don’t want to lose the friendship or imply that I don’t value her or support her, I just want to value and support her WITHOUT SPENDING THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS!!!
So question time: A. Would you cut off a friendship with someone who didn’t attend your wedding without a good excuse and B. If I say no to this girl, how do I do it without hurting her feelings?
Post # 2
Dizbee: It’s your choice to prioritize this friend’s wedding or not, just like it’s her choice to have an opinion about it if you decide not to attend. If you really don’t want to go then don’t, but accept that you may lose a friendship over it.
Post # 3
I wouldn’t cut off a friendship. People who have destination weddings are asking a lot of people and have to know that that not everyone can or will want to spend their time and money going to a place that they chose. Unless it was my best friend or sibling I probably wouldn’t go to a Destination Wedding. If the wedding was in town and you had no excuse, yeah I’d be upset, but no one should expect others to give up so much of their time and money for someone else’s wedding or any other event. I would just put decline on the RSVP card and send a gift. If she asks about it just say you’re happy for them but have a lot going on and it’s too far.
Post # 4
I think this is a fairly easy thing to figure out. Did she attend your wedding? If you are married that is, or if not would you expect/want her to attend yours? If the answer is no, then there is your answer. If the friend is a “good friend” and you were one on a short list thay got invited, you should go, but from evrything you have written sounds like shes just a fair weather, casual friend. Most people that do destiniation weddings are pretty in tune with understanding MOST people won’t be able to make the trip, ahem, and that is often why they do them..it saves money, and cuts the crap, only the really close family and friends will attend.
Post # 5
Newly_MrsA: See I think that’s just wrong, even the phrasing of “prioritizing her wedding.” I would absolute prioritize her wedding, if it asked for even a reasonable expenditure of my time and money. Then I’d be prioritizig her wedding over a slightly inconvenient drive and money for gift and gas and maybe one night in a hotel. No biggie, happy to do it and have done it numerous times. But a multi-day long trip costing thousands is asking me to “prioritize” over my personal financial and savings goals and I don’t think that’s a reason to end a friednship. There has got to be a way I can explain that to her if she gets upset.
Post # 6
And I do not think you will lose a complete friendship over it, (doesnt sound like its a close/lifetime lasting one anyway to me) if you explain its money etc, but do not expect her to attend yours, or future events, baby showers etc….. even if its local etc.
Post # 7
Darling Husband and I really wanted a dw and we went into it knowing that there was a slim chance that all of our closest would be there. Although we didn’t end up having a dw, we never never would have held it against people who didn’t go ‘for no reason’, it is a huge commitment to ask people to drop a ton of money and use vacation time for your wedding.
one of dh’s friends just got married in Mexico, we were given a lot of notice, but ultimately did not make the wedding (she chose an expensive resort) we already had plans to go to Cuba with dh’s parents, and the bride didn’t hold anything against us.
Another of dh’s friend is having a dw wedding in November and although we are going to try and make it we have been very clear that we are unsure, again she is supportive and not upset.
Im floored that anyone would actually be more than dissapointed over someone not being able to drop $1000+ on their wedding.
Post # 8
Dizbee: You don’t owe her an explanation why you can’t attend her wedding, any more than she owes you an explanation why she chose to have a Destination Wedding.
“I regret that I will be unable to attend. I wish you and ___ all the best.”
Her choice of wedding location should have no impact on your annual vacation plans with your friend of 20 years, nor should it affect your personal financial and savings goals.
I don’t think your two situations are the same. One merely involved an extra 2 hr drive. This one involves thousands of dollars and likely many days away from home.
Post # 9
- Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA
Dizbee: Skipping a wedding to extend your vacation by a day is a lot different than skipping a wedding because it will cost you thousands of dollars. That is ALWAYS a good excuse.
Post # 10
I’m sure if you RSVP no and just write something like “SO SAD I won’t be able to make it to this! I can’t wait to see all the pictures afterwards though; it sounds fantastic!” she’d have to be insane to break off the friendship with you. People who plan DWs know that many people simply won’t be able to make it. It’s just a fact. RSVP no in a timely manner (and don’t make an excuse or explain your absence; just say you can’t make it and leave it at that) and maybe send a gift to soften the blow. It will be fine.
Post # 11
I have had to choose work over a couple of weddings. At the time, it was a requirement of my job that I be there those weekends, during the busiest time of the work year. Does it feel good to decline a wedding invitation of someone you care about? Absolutely not. However, it is ridiculous to assume that how much you care about someone is dependent on if you’re able to attend an event of theirs, especially considering that unless you’re in the bridal party, you’re probably not going to spend much time with them anyway (assuming its a moderately sized wedding). People’s lives are just busy, and there are a multitude of valid reasons for not being able to attend a wedding. You can show your support in a variety of other ways. People are not obligated to attend events to which they are invited.
Post # 12
I’d like to think that people who plan destination weddings (as well as those who invite out of town guests) know when they send out the invitations that they will not be having as many people come as if they had their wedding in town. If she’s your friend, you’ll probably know whether or not she’ll have a rational response.
Just kill her with kindness — I really appreciate you having your wedding in between the bar exam and results coming out, but I just am not going to be able to afford to go. If she gets upset, then you can elaborate: you don’t have a job secured yet, you could still be doing interviews, since your financial future isn’t set in stone, you need to keep money in savings, etc. Get her a gift for the wedding, maybe attend a bridal shower if she has one, and call it a day. If she’s a halfway decent person, she’ll understand.
Post # 13
Dizbee: Hey there! Destination bride here. It’s ok! I don’t think you’re a bad friend. I’m almost positive your friend wouldn’t want to impose on you. I sure wouldn’t want to.
I invited everyone I wanted, but I made sure to tell everyone that it was totally ok if they couldn’t make it. It’s ok! Their lives (and yours) are more important than someone else’s wedding.
I would probably say I just wanted some quiet wind down time after school had ended. Then when they get back, you could offer to take them out for dinner as a wedding present if you like. A couple that we’re friends with did this for us and we had so much fun catching up with them over dinner. Or you could mail them a card just saying congratulations.
I absolutely don’t think a reasonable person would end a friendship over this. It’s not my place to decide how my friends spend $1500! Or, if it’s a couple, $3000!
All I really needed was my fiancé. 🙂 I even had one friend go to Jamaica at the exact same time we were all in Mexico. Like, we were in the airport security line together. It’s all good! I was so not upset with her… She had other plans and that doesn’t make us not friends. 🙂
Post # 14
Dizbee: I’m having a Destination Wedding and absolutely wouldn’t hold it against anyone who couldn’t go and honestly, anyone that would isn’t that good a friend.
when the invite comes in, just decline, offer no explanation, it’s none of their business WHY anyone can’t go to their wedding!
Post # 15
- Wedding: October 2014 - Restaurant
Destinations wedding are a lot to ask of people. Unless you are in the wedding party, I don’t feel that you are obligated to be there. Send her a nice wedding gift and decline.