(Closed) Parents inviting guests? Why is this even a thing?

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: Did you/would you allow your parents to invite friends to your wedding?


    Only friends who are close to me and I know, or family friends.

    They can invite whatever friends they want, with a limit on the number.

    The can invite whatever friends they want, unlimited number!

  • Post # 31
    155 posts
    Blushing bee

    I came across a brilliant article that basically made the point that being a good parent is hard and that for most of us, our parents are just glad they got us to this point. Having their friends at our weddings is a way for them to say “we made it!” as parents to their friends and peers. Just a thought 🙂

    Post # 32
    1722 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: March 1998

    Our first cut-off was family as distant as first cousins.

    My husband sent his mom a list of family guests from their side and asked if anyone was missing — his dad’s side is largely estranged, so we weren’t sure that we had gotten all of the distant-but-must-invite guests (including my husband’s grandma, whom he’s only seen ten times in the last…30 years or so?). We didn’t want some random aunt calling and getting mad.

    She responded by sending back a list of 10 people we’d never even heard of. He responded to her and asked who they were. Friends of theirs. I was pissed that she just assumed we were inviting their buddies, but kept my mouth shut. Only 4 RSVPed and only 2 actually showed up (after the other couple graciously canceled…one hour before).

    Had she invited more than 10, she would’ve been told to pick which ones she wanted. My parents weren’t allowed to invite any friends…in part because his mom’s additions kicked up the guest count so high. On the plus side, my parents weren’t too keen on inviting friends anyway.


    Post # 33
    2608 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2014 - Madison, WI

    We have some family friends attending but these are friends of my mother that I have known my entire life too. I was friends with their kids and in most cases their kids are invited too so it is just as much for me as it is for my mother.

    FI’s mother on the other hand wants to invite everyone she knows. Co-workers, friends, extremely distant relatives FI’s never met ect. He’s told her no, but she keeps going behind his back and asking me if I have any extra spots for guests since she “still has her list of people she’d like invited”.

    We did end up with enough declines to invite a few more people but Fiance ended up using that to invite more of his friends. The people his mother wants to invite, he doesn’t want them there so I have to respect that and we have to keep telling her no.

    Post # 34
    300 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    We’re inviting maybe 6 couples that are my fiance’s parents friends. Not a huge number compared to our guest list, but if it were up to me I wouldn’t have invited any of them. I’m actually only expecting one of those couples to attend because the wedding is about 4 hours from where they all live. Honestly, at least I’ve met some of these friends. About half the wedding is fiance’s family that I’ve never met. I kind of look at the friends as filler. My family is tiny and I don’t want the reception area to look empty. lol

    Post # 35
    108 posts
    Blushing bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    About 1/3 of our guest list are parents’ friends. I haven’t met at least 10 people that my parents invited but Fiance pretty much knows all the friends his parents invited (about 45 people- Future Mother-In-Law is a social butterfly). Our families aren’t very big and we’re only children. We never imagined a small wedding so we don’t have a problem with having all of these parent friends at the wedding. I think it will make it a livelier celebration if anything and we’re still at around 150 people which is a good size. We’re paying for the entire wedding but it’s also customary in our culture for all guests to bring money to cover their plates. So money wasn’t a huge concern since we know all of these parents’ friends will more than pay for themselves. If anything, we tried to cut our own friend list (ie casual American acquaintances who probably won’t cover their plates) rather than our parents’ because of the money. I also believe that a wedding is for the whole family, not just the couple, no matter who is paying for it so we were more than happy to have our parents invite whoever they wanted within certain guidelines. 

    Post # 36
    497 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: March 2013

    I did not want a whole bunch of people that I did not really have a relationship with at the wedding; however, I allowed our parents to invite a limited number of guests with the caveat that they have a relationship with me or my then fiance.

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