Post # 1
I’ve been reading the boards for quite a while but finally decided to post. No matter how hard he tries, Fiance can’t deal with his parents…they are trying to control the wedding and we are so stressed. It seems they aren’t happy with anything unless they make the decision all by themselves. My parents are paying for the entire wedding and allowing Fiance and I to make all planning decisions, as they want it to be a reflection of us and what we like…they have been wonderful about everthing and so supportive.
Future In-Laws said they would like to help us with the Rehearsal Dinner, which we thought would be fine (and they are paying which I realize gives them control). A few days ago we found out that they booked a place 2 months ago without telling anyone. Said they would’ve consulted us but didn’t think we cared about the wedding. (??) We’d even offered to help/given them ideas because they aren’t from the area. We don’t even know what time we will be able to have the rehearsal yet, not to mention that the restaurant is not in a convenient location. Our wedding will be in the morning, so we don’t want a big party the night before. They say they’ll be inviting 80+ to the Rehearsal Dinner (including people not even invited to the wedding)!! They’ve had a copy of the wedding guest list for months now, so they definitely know who is/isn’t invited. Both Fiance and I really want an intimate, relaxing dinner with our families. We aren’t the partying type and think it will be so stressful based on how difficult they’ve been already.
Now when Fiance talks to them about it, they say we are ungrateful, selfish, and that this Rehearsal Dinner is not for us anyway, it is for them and their friends to party, and they want everyone to be impressed. I feel like he’s tried everything…being calm but firm, putting his foot down, trying to compromise, etc but nothing works. Future Mother-In-Law cries and Future Father-In-Law yells. He’s explained our reasoning to them but they told him point blank that they don’t care who we want there, where we want to have it, etc. One day they finally asked where we wanted it (even though we’d already told them), he told them again, and they made faces even though they’ve never eaten there because they’re not from the area. They said everyone will be asking them why in the world they wanted to have it “at a place like THAT”. I have no clue what they mean by this because they are all nice restaurants….
We really do appreciate them wanting to do this for us but we don’t think we can deal with that kind of stress the night before the wedding!!! And Fiance is tired of not being heard. They also think that I hate their entire family even though I’ve been letting Fiance deal with this to keep them from thinking anything like that! Keep in mind that Fiance and I have been dating for over 6 years, and I’ve had a great relationship with his parents the entire time, we’ve always gotten along well and done things together.
We don’t know what to do…we’d rather not have an Rehearsal Dinner than have a big party…we feel like our wedding is too important and we shouldn’t be crazy stressed the day before…HELP!
Post # 3
This happens a lot and something similar happened to me (although not the huge guest list, but yes to the fancy out of the way location)
I really thing the best way to handle this is to smile and say Thank You. Let them impress their friends and when you two want to leave, you leave. Everyone else can decide to stay and party, but you do not have to.
RD’s for some parents is a way to put their mark on the whole wedding.
Post # 4
You are definitely between a rock and a hard place. Part of me thinks that if it were me, I would just ‘suck it up and keep the peace’. Attend ‘their party’, since they are paying, and hide my feelings of stress or uneasiness bc you are socializing in a setting you both are uncomfortable with, with people whom are not even invited to the wedding (who does that?!).
The other part of me, like you are trying to do with this post, is FIGURE OUT A WAY TO GET THRU TO THEM!! Sadly, I am thinking that the latter WILL inevitably stress you out more. If you two continue to ‘fight’ for what you want, then the more likely they will continue to be rude, and fight back. Nothing would be worse than having your wedding day ‘ruined’ because your FIL’s did not get their way, which they sound like the kind of people to do just that.
My vote/advice: Smile thru the irritation, pretend to enjoy their Rehearsal Dinner, and work around that 3,4,5 hours they are so adamant about having. Good luck
Post # 5
You seem to have tried everything so here are the only suggestions I can offer:
1) pipe bomb the r.d venue 😉
2)Pull the ultimatum card: since it isn’t about you two getting married- it is about them playing party host that y’all will just rsvp no if they don’t check before they wreck (a good way to create bad blood…although IMO they’ve already done it)
3) Compromise. Show and smile pretty but duck out incredibly early citing your wedding wake-up (and have a beer with your folks at a spot down the road)
4) Leave an angry skunk in their house regardless of how it plays out
I’m sorry they are behaving this way. I think you and Fi have done all the right things and you’re being incredibly mature in the matter. Unfortunately as you said, they are paying so they’ve got more control than perhaps you’d like. It is generous to pay, but they aren’t being very gracious and it’s considered rude to invite non-wedding guests to events like this. I hope that you are able to find an acceptable solution or they get off the power trip and start listening to your very logical reasoning.
Post # 6
I would just suck it up,grin and bare it.It is a nice gesture and not worth fighting over.
Post # 7
We are in the same situation! There is a difference between being “generous” and using what you can give to get your way. I think we are going to just ignore FILS since we have been very very clear (you can see my post if you would like) and they just play dumb about it. We will show up when we please and leave when we please.
Post # 8
Just tell them you’re not having one anymore. They seem to be making it about them, not you, and that would really upset me if it was me. I’d be really frustrated and maybe overreact, but it doesn’t sound like something you’d enjoy at all, especially if they invited a bunch of people who aren’t invited to the wedding.
Post # 9
I think the best thing to do is stop debating about it. Dont even talk about it unles they ask as question. Then if they do, give an answer they want to hear and let it go.
Let your families that are invited know that you probably won’t be at the dinner for very long. Make your appearance and duck out.
Let your in laws to be know the day before or day of that you are too tired or you have a headache or etc and so on, and with the wedding in the morning, you just gotta go, sorry and see you tomorrow.
At the beginning of the dinner, thank everyone and do whatever you and your Fiance want to do to show your appreciation and duck out.
Post # 10
Thanks everyone for the feedback! We’re definitely struggling with whether we should just go along with it or not. The thing is, we’re pretty sure that they will be just as angry with us if we leave early compared to if we didn’t have one/did it ourselves, even if we are crystal clear in explaining to them why we can’t stay. They haven’t listened to really anything we’ve told them about the wedding. That’s just the way they are…they actually asked us what we had going on the next day that we would need our sleep for!!!! I think that virtually everyone else at the Rehearsal Dinner would understand why we’re leaving early though, so maybe we will do that!
Post # 11
@pinkrose32: Look you can’t control how they are going to react. If you are constantly trying to appease them, constantly making decisions based on their feelings, and kowtow to their every want and desire, you going to spend your married life being miserable. Worry about you and your Fiance, not his parents and their happiness.
If you accept their gift of hosting/paying for the rehearsal dinner, then you go, smile, say “thank you” and leave when it’s time for you both to go. The only alternative is to respectfully decline their offer to host, and pay for it yourselves or simply don’t have one.
Post # 12
We were in this situation ourselves, so my heart goes out to you. Here’s what we did:
We told them No. We refused to hand over the guest list, and said we wouldn’t be attending. A wedding is about 2 people joining their lives together, not who can throw the bigger party. In our case, we are paying for our wedding entirely ourselves, and no one has offered to help. Our FIL’s offered to pay for the Rehearsal Dinner, and then tried to spend more than our actual wedding. We shut the whole thing down. I don’t need our wedding shown up by a dinner.
It has created bad blood, but frankly, we don’t care. If they want to be so shitty, that is their problem.