Post # 1
Fiance and I have always liked the idea of taking off on vacation with our kids and getting married… not technically eloping as we weren’t planning to keep it a secret. As we have been mentioning the idea to family members, as expected, we are getting some “respectfully disappointed” responses.
In discussing it with Fiance today, we realized that a wedding may be the only time our families will get to meet each other (spread across the US) and we feel like that is a big deal, maybe the decision maker.
Feeling torn because we wanted a stress-free easy wedding for “us” – not what others wanted us to do – anyone else make this decision/how did you handle?
Post # 2
We were originally going to elope but decided we wanted our families with us( for many reasons but but also it could be the only chance for our families to meet to) we re both very adamant that we do it our way and so we re keeping it reasonably small and are very controlled with the budget.
Post # 3
cbee2017 : As a mother of adult children, I’m much more interested in seeing my children marry, than I am in meeting their in-laws. So (in my opinion) giving the families the chance to meet shouldn’t be an important factor.
And anyway since you have kids, isn’t there a chance that your parents might sometimes meet for your children’s birthdays?
You could compromise by inviting your parents only. They’re the ones it’s most important to think of, since they raised you.
Post # 4
I have just spent my whole day watching elopment videos on vimeo, I realise how ridiculous I sound as I type this lol even tearing up at some of them because they were so beautiful other’s obviously weren’t so to my taste. But it certainly put in perspective for me on exactly what I do and don’t want.
Post # 5
We considered eloping vs big wedding and we opted for the bug wedding. Although some would consider it a small wedding as had 60 guests but when you go from 2 to 60 it was a big wedding for us.
We planned the big wedding because I’m fortunate to still have all my grandparents and with one thing or another it’s likely that I’ll be the only grandchild’s wedding that either side attened. I couldn’t take that away from them. We also figured it would upset our parents too much. We didn’t hide that we were having the wedding for everyone else and most people were generally ok with us as result and made the planning easier.
If you go with this route, you’re allowed to feel sad that it doesn’t go to plan or that it’s not what you would have preferred. I would remind myself of the situation that caused us to have the big wedding and focus on the elements that I was looking forward to. We also went with an inclusive venue so our DJ and centrepieces were covered with the reception and food. Even things we didn’t care about like chair covers were covered and they did most of the work. I made it look like a wedding but I also didn’t get too worked up about it being a pintrest worthy wedding or blog worthy. Our wedding looks like thousands of others weddings but this allowed me to defer to the vendors on certain things and just let them bring something together.
We also made our honeymoon a priority. We did a massive no-no for some people because we didn’t upgrade the menu or the venue but had a ridiculous honeymoon. All our guests were fed and had enough to drink. The food was edible, the chairs were comfortable and the hotel rooms were cheap so I don’t care that I didn’t buy everyone steak. Plan your honeymoon with the kids in your overall budget and forgo a super fancy venue for that vacation.
I think doing it this way also means that when things went wrong (like the wrong colour of flowers) I just didn’t care that much and continued with the day.
I’m not going to lie, it was stressful at times but we could have made it even easier for ourselves. Also some of it was family things that didn’t relate to the wedding as such but us getting married. But I am glad we did it now, it was great to have all the people we loved in one place. I think I’d have been OK either way but I don’t regret the wedding. We are also planning on getting a catholic blessing at some point, this will just be the two of us kinda like an Elopment. On your honeymoon maybe you could find somewhere and read vows to each other with just the kids so whilst it’s not legal and you’re already married you sort of get what you both wanted originally?
Post # 6
I desperately wanted to elope, but my mom and his mom were clearly unhappy with this. Even a small wedding would have been a disappointment. So, we are doing the two traditional family weddings in our respective countries. We have done the legal, American wedding and I loved being with my friends and family, even if it wasn’t what I wanted in the first place. I agree with PP, just do the simple family wedding and focus on planning a great honeymoon with your kids.
Post # 7
futuremrsbennett95 : thank you, I am hoping we can do that. I am glad I am not alone in this dilemma!
aussiemum1248 : thanks for the parent perspective – our parents live in different states so it’s unlikely they would be in the same place at the same time. I’m not sure if we could get his dad to travel here except for a wedding! I do like the idea of just the parents as a compromise though.
ringobsessed5 : it’s funny, we were at a wedding this weekend and it made me happy with our (at that time) decision to not have that… so to have this discussion the day afterward was kind of jarring.
loz24 : your reply made me cry! Because I *am* sad about it. I love the idea of doing both though! It’s tough because we have both had big weddings before and really wanted to avoid the planning/drama/stress this time around. Family is important to both of us though. Just our immediate families add up to almost 30 people (11 nieces and nephews!) and all but 4 have to travel. It’s so much expense for them too and flying with little kids… I guess I thought I was saving everyone the decision.
thegrandsophy : thank you! I know once things are set in motion I will get more excited. There are things that are good about it for sure. Just feeling overwhelmed at the moment. Thanks for the support 🙂
Post # 8
We just got married in March, second marriage for both of us. Neither one of us had the big wedding the first time around (he got married at the courthouse and I got married in my parents’ living rooom with 11 guests, no reception). We thought about having a big to do this time around, especially since we have children – all the literature on blending families say to have the children involved in the wedding. But, even for something relatively small and simple, it was quite a budget buster, which I had a hard time justifying. I just couldn’t get over the feeling of doing it for everyone else, when I wanted to do it for us. We ended up eloping (not secretly – we made everyone aware of our plans) and it was truly wonderful, peaceful, romantic, and very us. And the kids/families did not mind at all. In fact, most of the kids were happy that they didn’t have to go to a wedding.
Post # 9
Something to think about is how each decision will affect your relationships with family. How upset will they actually be if you elope? “Respectfully disappointed” doesn’t seem so bad, but I would try to figure out if long term that would lead to some resentment. Also if you give up what you wanted, will it lead to any resentment on your part?
I wanted an elopement to avoid family drama, but Future Mother-In-Law threw a fit and Fiance decided it was important to him to have his mom and grandmothers there so we settled on a wedding of 50. But the longer the planning process goes (and the more drama his mom creates), the more I’m starting to resent his mom. It’s a very real struggle that I’m fighting daily to not let affect my relationship with his mother.
Hopefully this isn’t the case with you, just think over how it will impact relationships before giving up what you want for family.
Post # 10
mrsltb : that’s a great point, our teenage boys especially would be glad to skip it. I am so happy it worked out for you!!
kharpe6 : I’m sorry about your drama 🙁 that’s what I want to avoid. I wish the answer was more clear!
I had an appointment with my therapist today by chance and her advice reminded me of aussiemum1248 – does it really matter if they all meet each other? She encouraged me (us) to decide if it’s important to US for whoever to be there. I can’t control how anyone feels.
Now I just have to figure out how I feel and how Fiance feels… Just when I thought I had it figured out lol. Thank you all so much for your responses.
Post # 11
My fiancé & I are doing big wedding because we wanted all our friends and family to celebrate with us. Fortunately, his whole family is scattered around TX. My family is in California and some in TX. I also have family in UK and they’re not coming to wedding and that’s totally okay. Weddings are EXPENSIVE! fiancé & I paid for ours and it’s been extremely stressful cause it seems like more and more things are coming up.
Do this wedding for YOU and what’s right for your FAMILY not everyone else cause they’re not paying for your wedding. Think about what you can afford and don’t try to please everyone cause that’s impossible!
I have heard some people regretting not having all their families at their weddings so something to think about.
Congrats on your upcoming wedding!
Post # 12
I strongly wanted to elope and Fiance wanted a wedding for his family’s sake. We ended up compromising with a small wedding. It has been a nightmare to say the least and now he wishes that he listened to me from the beginning. Hindsight is 20/20, but we’d take it all back and elope if we could do it all over again.
Post # 13
We were together 12 years and had 3 children before we took the plunge. For years I was totally against the idea of marriage. It had nothing to do with my partner though. It was just the way I felt being the child of a parent with 3 divorces among other things. As we got older and my feelings started to change, I made it clear to both our families that if we ever did it, we were eloping. For one, we are a very private couple. You will never see those “Oh my God I love my spouse so much” posts on Twitter from either of us. So for ME to stand there and pledge my undying love for someone with 100 witnesses would take away from the sentiment and the beauty of the moment. Secondly as parents, it seemed irresponsible to spend so much money celebrating a relationship we have been privately celebrating for years for free. Lastly, my now husband has severe social anxiety so his worst nightmare would be standing up and speaking and being stared at by 100 people, even friends and family. And my worst nightmare would be stressing about floral arrangements and seating charts and food that I couldnt care less about and that noone aside from me would remember in 5 years. So without a word to anyone, we planned a our “elopement”. I bought a wedding dress(used), hired a photographer and videographer (you’d be surprised how much cheaper it is when you say elopement instead of wedding). Same for venue. It was the rooftop of a very beautiful hotel the next town over that is quite expensive for a traditional wedding but only a couple hundred to rent for an hour to say a few vows and take a few pictures. And on the day we picked, right before we left, I mailed out “Surprise we eloped” announcements with an invitation to join us the next weekend at a local park for a BBQ reception. We wore shorts and played music and bbqed and boiled crawfish and had a ball. We requested no gifts because we had been together long enough that our home was set. Our photographer was able to rush our favorite print for us which she blew up and framed and we had on display for the party so they got to see us in our garb. It was much more “us” than any “normal”reception would be and the best of both worlds. We had the private quiet days with the 2 of us and our boys that we always envisioned and we also got to celebrate with who we wanted how we wanted. Bonus, the whole shebang down to the rings cost around 5 grand (with the bulk of that going towards my antique engagement/bridal ring set) If anyones feelings were hurt they never said so and at the very least they werent surprised because like I said, I had told them for years this was what we wanted. You have to do what works for you and your Fiance. Its been my experience that where weddings are concerned, someone’s feelings will ALWAYS be hurt. So all you can do is be true to the two of you and what you want. Good luck
Post # 14
Depends how controlling and stressful your family would be! I’ve witnessed mothers and grans take over and plan the whole thing and I’ve seen the grooms mother sit and scowl all day! So sad. I can see the appeal to eloping!