(Closed) Rehearsal Dinner “etiquette” questions

posted 9 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 3
452 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

this is a case of tradition vs. etiquette. tradition is the groom’s parents pay for the rehearsal dinner. etiquette is to invite the wedding party and all Out of Town quests (if that can’t be done for budget reaons, then it’s okay to just invite the wedding party). you don’t have to follow tradition, but you should be corteous and follow etiquette. that said, your FIL’s don’t have to pay for th Rehearsal Dinner. since your in-laws are footing the bill, the guests are limited to whomever they want to invite. etiquette would dictate that if they invite any Out of Town guests, then they should invite ALL Out of Town guests, but, it’s really their decision. perhaps your Fiance can have a heart-to-heart talk with them and explain the situation and hurt feelings that could be involved if your Future In-Laws decide to only invite “their” side. if they won’t budge, then offer to cover the cost of your Out of Town guests, and explain that due to financial reasons, you will have to something that is budget-friendly. maybe your Future In-Laws will feel bad and change their minds. good luck and hope everything works out.

Post # 4
165 posts
Blushing bee

The rehearsal dinner should be your and your FI’s immediate family and their spouses, the wedding party and their spouses, and the officiant if he attends the rehearsal.  Anyone else like out of town guests or extended family are at the discretion of the host.  The rehearsal dinner isn’t meant to be a pre-party for the reception and people typically only include out of town guests out of a sense of obligation so they’re not left to their own devices.   

It is totally up to your FI’s parents who gets invited, but it would be bad form to only invite the groom’s aunts and uncles.  The reception honors both of you, not just him.  She can do what she wants, but by making the distinction between his family and your family, your Future Mother-In-Law is in essence sending the message to your family that she’s not concerned with creating a unified family and would rather be petty.  I don’t know why she would want to make such a bad impression when the reception is a gesture to thank your family for hosting the wedding.

Would they have been originally invited before your conversation about them maybe not being there?  If the rehearsal dinner invites had been sent or a contract signed, that would be another story, but otherwise I don’t see what difference it makes.   Maybe it was a miscommunication, maybe she wasn’t listening, maybe you should have been more proactive in telling her who all would be here earlier…water under the bridge at this point.  Two months is PLENTY of time to organize a rehearsal dinner. 

Hopefully his parents understand that this hiccup with the rehearsal dinner is nothing compared to what you deal with in wedding planning.   Maybe you can offer to help pay for your aunts and uncles.  Hopefully your Future Mother-In-Law will cut you some slack.  At least be thankful and give her some credit for taking care of the rehearsal dinner….I had to plan and arrange EVERYTHING for mine!

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