Post # 1
Well, this is awkward. We’re getting married in 10 days and our chaplain (military general religious figure) who is marrying us called my Fiance asking to bring 3 couples from his bible study class to our wedding (ceremony and reception). He said they are civilians and he wants them to experience a military wedding.
We have the space, he knows this, which is why he’s asking. But this is totally out of line, no? Like ridiculously presumptuous? I’m totally blown away. Obviously, I don’t want them there. I have no idea if he’s already told them, but I hope not.
We’re having a super small wedding, like 30-35 people, so they won’t exactly just blend in with a crowd. I’m also really shy and plain don’t want them there. There will be enough of FI’s family I’ve never met, no need to add perfect strangers into the mix.
He’s gone out of his way to help us when our last chaplain bailed out a few weeks ago. Long story there, but the navy was drafting old chaplain to their bowling team. He’s been really nice, and not made us do the counseling he usually requires.
I feel bad saying no because he’s been helpful, but I really don’t want him there. Seriously – who invites people to another person’s wedding?!
I think we’re going to say we’re just not comfortable with strangers there. My mom thinks we should just not pick this battle and let them come. I just don’t want to look back at my photos in a couple years and have to say I have no idea who these people are. Argh. I’m mostly pissed that he even thought it was okay to ask!!
I’m furious. Fiance has to call him tomorrow to respond. Am I overreacting? Any suggestions as to what else we can say?
Post # 3
I’d say yes to standing/sitting in the back at ceremony, but no to the reception. Because you shouldn’t have to pay for a random persons meal.
Post # 4
- Wedding: September 2011 - Bent Creek Winery (Livermore, California); Reception: Family Residence (San Ramon, California)
Wow, that does seem really out of line, especially give the intimacy of your wedding. I would use that as grounds to say “no” to this very strange request. Maybe say something along the lines of, “Our wedding is going to be a small and intimate event with only our closest family and friends. As I’m sure you can imagine, inviting several strangers will change the tone and dynamic of our wedding, and so we say no to these additional guests.” You might also mention money – if these people are coming to the reception as well, I imagine you’d have to pay to feed/seat them, and I certainly wouldn’t want to do that for six strangers!
Post # 5
@youknowlmoe: Unfotunately, he knows it won’t cost us anything extra. We had to pay for minimum 45 people so we’ll have a ton of room and extra food. It came up in conversation at one point when we were talking about our wedding with him, which is why he knows in the first place. I just feel like he’s taking advantage of it.
@parasol: I really like that line, thank you. I think we’ll probably use that!
Post # 6
I feel your pain. I am in a similar situation, but my wedding is in February. We haven’t been engaged a month and we already have family asking if they can bring a random date, a friend or an entire family as guests. We are shocked at the audacity. People have no shame! lol But I guess we can’t blame them for asking. They are asking and that’s better than them just doing it.
What my fiance and I decided to do may or may not work for you, but here’s what we did: We told them that our dream wedding consists of a small wedding with ONLY our closest family and friends. We added that we have had multiple requests from various guests asking if they can bring a guest or 2. (This is a little white lie, but my fiance and I can live with it). We continue to say that to be fair, we are saying no to everyone’s requests because we don’t want to show preferential treatment. Finally, we end with how bad we feel and how sorry we are to say no because “we really wish we could say yes to YOU for all that you’ve done for us. But we are so grateful to you for being so understanding of our decision.” So far, this seems to work…we have had everyone be supportive and understanding. No drama!
I agree with your mom that we need to pick our battles, but having who we want at our wedding is a big deal to us. We should be able to invite who we want and people just need to deal with it. Those who really care about us will understand and not take it personal if they can’t bring a guest. However, my fiance and I have accepted the fact that we might just hurt somebody’s feelings, but that is not our intention. Someone may get upset, talk about us and maybe even decide not to come to the wedding. We have both decided that we are ok if this happens. We cannot control other people’s reactions and we are not going to try. We cannot please everyone either. We are very nice to everyone when we deny their request and I think you guys should be too. My advice is to use your sweetest and apologetic voice but take a united stand or they will walk all over you. We are not mean or harsh people, so I hope you get what I’m saying.
Seriously, I wish you guys the best in whatever you decide to do! Good luck and I hope our story helps you in some way to figure out what is right for you!
Post # 7
Fiance talked to him today and he’s agreed not to bring the guests. Crisis averted I guess. He seems like a nice enough guy and won’t hold grudges, though after this I can’t be sure. Blah.
I’m sure it’ll be out of my system in a few days but I’m still not over this quite yet. Who does that?!
Post # 8
@thursdayschild: Glad it worked out!
Post # 9
Glad you got it resolved. That is a strange request with any size wedding but especially such a small intimate one. Usually people who ask things like that have never planned a wedding themselves so they just don’t get it.