Post # 17
Thank you everyone, you have confirmed what I already believed was true – she is a bully. Unfortunately I will probably lose 2 of my 4 bridesmaids (both Future Sister-In-Law are in the party) and she is now trying to fuel the fire with my Future Father-In-Law, who wanted to show off his grandkids at the wedding. It’s crazy because the sister and future father in law keep saying “this isn’t a good way to start out with the family” but when I asked my fiance if he turned that statement back around to them that it’s not good to start out by controlling our wedding, they just dismiss it.
Now the father might not contribute, after having invited 30 guests (people I’ve never met and finace barely knows). Invites have gone out so these 30 people are already rsvp-ing yes. It’s a mess because they all acted ok with the no kids but had a misconception that we would “come around” and see it their way as the wedding got closer.
Why are other people so controlling and worked up about a wedding that isn’t theirs?
Post # 18
I agree with most of the PPs. If you are truly set on the no kids rule, give her husband the money back immediately. Figure out how to pay for the rest of it yourself or cut costs. I don’t like it when people hold contributed money over brides’ heads, but it is pretty hard to argue that they cannot bring their kids to an event that they are paying for a large percentage of. For this reason, I think couples have to be really clear with anyone wanting to give money for the wedding that it cannot come with any strings, or at least be really clear on what decisions the donor can be involved in and to what degree.
I did the same thing SamanthaLovesJames mentioned above. I have made a couple of exceptions to the no kids rule at our wedding. To me, it just isn’t worth fighting over. After the wedding, you still have to have a relationship with these people and since they offered to pay for 25% of your wedding, I am going to assume they are very close to your fiance.
Regardless of what you decide, best of luck dealing with what sounds like a difficult family situation.
Post # 19
@jandbwed: I’m a crazy Pisces so I would call your FFIL’s bluff and tell him if you can’t afford to pay for his 30 friends then you have no other choice than to call them and say you have to refuse them a seat at the wedding.
I am seriously angry for you. If she is bringing a Nanny, then she can watch them in a hotel room or home. No compromise.
Seriously, I’m crazy enough to call his friends and say the wedding has been cancelled and please do not contact Future Father-In-Law to give him time to digest what is going on.
Post # 20
I agree about standing your ground on your wishes….its you and your Fiance day, you should be able to have an adults only wedding if you choose. Be prepared for some that cannot or will not be able to come because of it.
Post # 21
I’m going to have to disagree with the majority of the PPs. You said their paying for 1/4 of your wedding? And Future Father-In-Law is helping pay too, right? In my opinion, as soon as you accepted that money from them to help pay for your wedding, you lost the right to have full control over the guest list and other decisions. Including if the sister who is helping pay gets to bring her kids.
At this point, for me personally, it’s not worth the battle. I’d let the sister bring the kids. They’re paying for a significant portion of your wedding. Pay the money back if you can, then you can tell her to stuff it and leave her kids home. But then you’d have to pay back the Future Father-In-Law as well, and he can uninvite his guests. My guess is that you’ll have more trouble dealing with that, than just letting the kids be there in the first place.
Post # 22
Bottom line is that it is YOUR wedding not hers and you have made it quite clear about no kids. She needs to get over it.
Post # 23
@SweetVanity: I agree, if other people are helping to finance your wedding you sometimes have to respect their wishes. It does seem like you would avoid a lot of conflict by allowing the children. There is nothing wrong with not wanting children at the wedding, I wouldn’t want them there either. And it sucks that they all seemed like they were okay with the no-kids rule at first, but unfortunately you can’t always make your own rules when you are not footing the bill by yourself.
Post # 24
@pineapplelove: I am agreeing with SweetVanity and Pineapplelove here. They are contributing 25% of your wedding which is a significant amount. Should have discussed the terms with them when receiving the contribution to avoid control situation like this. I think it will be hard to not allowing them to bring kids especially she is willing to bring a nanny.
It really not worth the battle, IMO.
If you really don’t want kids, see if you can return the money. Otherwise, it’s gonna be a tough battle consider you still want a relationship with her.
Post # 25
I can’t believe so many are saying to just let the sister bring her kids! It’s ONE NIGHT, people. Pretty sure this woman can go without her children for ONE NIGHT. She has a nanny: the nanny can watch the kids at home.
The OP made it clear from the beginning that this was a no-kids wedding! They contributed money KNOWING this. I do think OP should give the money back to the sister for the sake of keeping the peace, but she should absolutely not give in on allowing kids, ESPECIALLY since there are other children in the immediate family that are not attending. And if Future Father-In-Law withdraws his contribution, he can also withdraw his guests from the guest-list if budget cuts need to be made.
We had a kid-free wedding as well, with the exception of those in our bridal party, and I don’t regret it for a moment. I don’t have any living siblings, but if DH’s sister made the same decision once we have children, I would definitely respect her right to have an adults-only event.
Post # 26
@lamkky: Should have discussed the terms with them when receiving the contribution to avoid control situation like this. I think it will be hard to not allowing them to bring kids especially she is willing to bring a nanny.
They GAVE the money knowing the wedding was to be kids-free. If they mistakenly thought the OP would change her mind, that’s on them. THEY agreed to the terms of a no-kids wedding when they gave the money.
And I don’t think it will be hard to not allow the kids just because she has a nanny…if she has a nanny, the nanny can stay at home with the kids. It’s simple.
Post # 27
@jandbwed: I would let Future Father-In-Law know that if he rescinds funding that you will have to rescind funding.
Also, have your Fiance have a looooong talk with Future Father-In-Law alone without the FSILs there. See if he can come to an understanding without the matriarch goading him along.
I just went to two weddings that had children present. At one wedding a baby squalled every time it was brought back into the church. I missed hearing most of the ceremony because, between the infant gurgling, screaming, and whining and the mother taking the child in and out— super distracting and loud in a silent church.
At the second wedding there were kids at the reception and a flower girl got knocked on her butt by a tipsy person. Cue the screams!
Post # 28
@Miss Apricot: it wouldn’t be a big deal for the sister to leave the kids behind, and if she were just a guest it would be tough cookies for her. but the sister is not just a guest if she’s contributing a significant portion of the wedding budget, she’s essentially one of the hosts. when you accept money from other people you relinquish control. And according to the OP her Fiance told his sister about the no-kids rule, she didn’t do it herself. So it sounds like there may have been some wires crossed.
Post # 29
WOW, what a horrible situation to be in & this sounds sooo stressful! Initially, I would say let her bring the kids to nash the drama, BUT since she is acting out like a alpha b*tch and contorting your bridal party, I think you must stand your ground. Standing your ground also means paying back the contributed money so the ground is 100% yours in all ways. Good luck & perhaps you should all go for a mediation session before more arrows are shot? At least in that way you all can try to talk it out and make peace before the wedding and then everyone can talk & be heard and no one can say you didn’t try to resolve the issues at hand…? Just an idea.
Post # 30
If their contribution was contingent on them being allowed to do as they please, they should have told you that when they handed the cheque over.
Call her back and tell her you’ve discussed it with your Fiance and, in order that the same rules apply to all your guests fairly, that she can’t bring her kids. Say that it will seem rude to other guests who have made alternative arrangements.
Then tell her she’s a bossy bitch and if the kids turn up they’ll all be eating outside….or
something a little more polite.
Post # 31
@jandbwed: “Why are other people so controlling and worked up about a wedding that isn’t theirs?”
Because you made them in charge! They’re PAYING for your wedding. Not once did I read about you returning their money. RETURN their money and pay for it yourself if you want it done your way!