(Closed) Singing Happy Birthday to a Wedding Guest???

posted 11 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 17
8 posts
  • Wedding: September 2009

I’m sorry but ur fiance should respect your wishes and not allow it even if he thinks it is ok.  I also think it’s a little rude for the Mother-In-Law to even ask that of you on your wedding day.  The kid is 17, I’m sure even she doesn’t want this to happen.  BUT…if it is going to be a big deal, I would just let her do it.  You will have much more important things to think about before that day gets here.  Good Luck. :o)

Post # 18
5822 posts
Bee Keeper

I totally empathize with you!!  I would be TICKED!  She didn’t even ask!  Just "this is what we plan to do to ruin this very expensive party that you are throwing in your honor…" like it was nothing!!  AHHHHHH!  {makes stabbing motion}

Like others have said, why don’t you make your own plan for how you will celebrate her birthday (if you want to).  Then your Future Mother-In-Law can’t say $hit because you are celebrating it, just not her way.  Oh, and I would tell the band you won’t pay them if they play that song at any time.  Won’t. Pay. Them.

Post # 19
291 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

I think it was a little presumptous of your Future Mother-In-Law to make these plans without asking you first. I would feel kind of miffed too. But as for the actual act of singing happy birthday to the guest? I don’t think that’s a big deal at all. I’ve seen it done at weddings, and as long as they’re not throwing the girl a mini party within your wedding (aka anything beyond a song and maybe a candle in her slice of cake), no one is going to forget that they’re there for anything other than your wedding and celebrating you and your FI! I would also say if this is a cousin that Fiance knows well (not some random cousin thrice removed no one has ever seen before), it would be a nice gesture on your part, especially since the wedding symbolizes the joining of families as well.

But…ultimately it boils down to what you feel comfortable with. There are certainly MUCH worse things that your Future Mother-In-Law could plan without telling you, like adding 50 surprise guests to the reception or something 😉

Post # 20
2324 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: April 2020

I don’t see why it’s a big deal. She’s basically a kid and it’s a time when the whole family is together. It’s only 5 minutes.

Post # 21
51 posts
Worker bee

Has anyone asked the birthday girl what she wants?  I’d be horrified if the band starting singing to me and then a cupcake comes out with a sparkler?  It’s not her party, it’s your wedding.

Post # 22
289 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

I went to a wedding this year and someone did that.  I thought it was rude to the bride and groom to take the attention from them.  I just realized that it sounds selfish, but on the other hand, I would not go to their birthday party and announce my engagment or sing happy birthday to someone else.

Post # 23
2292 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

We had a separate cake, and balloons, and had the band play Happy Birthday for my niece Emma, who turned 1 year old the day of our wedding.  Completely unnecessary, as she hardly knew what was going on, but the photos were adorable, and I thought it was really nice of my sister not to have an issue with us having the wedding on the first birthday of her only child. 

We also made an announcement for the 65th wedding anniversary of two dear friends of the family who were at the wedding, which was also the same day.  We had the band play "their song."  They were quite touched.

Both these things were our idea (really, my idea).  Between the Rehearsal Dinner, the backyard barbecue for Out of Town guests, and the wedding itself I felt like it wasn’t going to be a big deal at all to give a few minutes of the spotlight to someone else.  However, it was my idea.  I do think that your Future Mother-In-Law is completely out of line to be planning this and just telling you what she is going to do.  Plus, having an 18 and a 21 year old (stepchildren) I can tell you that they are certainly old enough to understand and accept the idea that their birthday celebration might not actually be on their birthday.  Even much younger children understand the idea that although their birthday is Wednesday, for example, and we’ll all tell you Happy Birthday and let you open a couple of presents, your actual party is going to be this weekend. 

I would suggest that if you all are close enough to this cousin that you would normally be invited to her birthday, or give her presents, it might be appropriate to do a little something.  That doesn’t need to be as much as providing a separate cake and having all your guests sing to her – it could be as little as putting a small, wrapped present and card at her place at the table.  Just something to acknowledge that the day is special to her as well.  I’m sure that she’s not completely missing out on any birthday celebration, unless her parents and friends are total jerks, so you don’t need to feel like you have to provide some kind of birthday party substitute.

And, unless your Future Mother-In-Law is paying for the reception, feel free to just tell her what you (and your FI) have decided.  It’s not her party after all.  It’s not inappropriate to remind her of that (politely) if she can’t seem to remember.

Post # 24
820 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2009

You got a ton of feedback so I won’t write much but wanted to say that it is the birthday of TWO of our close friends (1 Groomsmen and 1 GM’s wife) on our wedding day, and two of my best friends (BMs) birthdays are in the days surrounding our wedding. I have thought long and hard about a way to let them know we didn’t forget that they are also celebrating their birthdays with us. I didn’t think of singing a song at the reception, and I won’t add that because I wouldn’t know who to address it to (all of them? just the 2? and there could be others too and I’d hate to just totally leave them out!) BUT- I am going to try my hardest to deliver cupcakes to the hotel rooms of those particular two, possibly all 4, guests. I want them to know we didn’t forget. So, can you suggest doing something similar for your cousin to appease your FMIL? Without bringing it into your actual wedding?  

Post # 25
5398 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I have to say, I wouldn’t mind if happy birthday was played for her, it happens so fast.  I think putting a candle in her piece of wedding cake would be nice and I liked the suggestion of having a gift and/or card at her seat.  I see how you would be upset with your Future Mother-In-Law and I agree she shouldn’t be the one planning it, that should fall on the two of you and how you want to handle it.

Post # 26
79 posts
Worker bee

I don’t think you’re at all being selfish!! It’s yalls day, you should celebrate!! And I don’t think that his family should get mad that you want it just to be about you. You only get one wedding reception, she will have many other birthdays. And like you said, she can celebrate at another time and place. I would do the same thing.

Post # 28
883 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: April 2009

We had 2 birthdays and 3 anniversarys on our wedding weekend – We pulled them all out in front and sang, danced and celebrated everything from a 30th birthday, a first wedding anniversary to a 50th wedding anniversary!!  It was soo much fun, added to the celebration feeling and each one of tehm thanked us later for including their causes of celebration in our wedding day memories and joys. I HIGHLY recommend!

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