Post # 1
I’ve done my best to search the boards to see if this had been addressed somewhere and I also tried googling but I am having no luck.
There is a married couple on our invite list who also have a girlfriend living in with them. In that case, does the etiquette dictate that I have to invite the girlfriend? And how the heck would you handle addressing the envelope?
Post # 3
- Wedding: May 2013 - Walt Disney World
What do you mean by girlfriend? Like just their friend that lives with them or they are all an item? If the former, and you don’t know her, you can just invite the couple. If the latter, then I guess you would invite all three…
Post # 4
Uhh. Wow. Are you friends with said girlfriend? Do they consider themselves a “social unit” as the three of them or just the couple with a special friend on the side. And is it just a gf or like a sister wife? If that is the case I would invite her for sure, but otherwise… good luck!
Post # 5
Are they in an open relationship (and the three of them are an item)?
If so, I would address it as:
Mr. and Mrs. John Smith
1234 Main St.
Anytown, USA 12345
Post # 6
But, OP I really want to know what you mean by girlfriend! Like PP said, if it’s just a friend who lives with them, you are not obligated to invite her. The nature of the relationship makes all the difference.
Post # 7
Hi, sorry! I should have clarified… it is a married couple and they are romantically involved and living with someone who is a girlfriend to both of them. So an open relationship I suppose? I’m not really sure the difference between open relationships and sister wives because you can’t marry 2 people anywhere as far as I know (but I could be wrong).
I’m not friends with the girlfriend, have never met her.
Thank you all so much for your help!
Post # 8
I say no. It doesn’t sound like they’re a social unit (as you’re friends with the couple, are aware that they have a girlfriend, but have never met her). If you would like to invite her anyway, I’d think she would get her own invitation. Even if their situation is common knowledge, an adult social unit is at the most 2 people (save for a sisterwife situation).
Post # 9
ooo this is interestingly saucy
but i wouldn’t invite the girlfriend. you’ve never met her and the initial couple are married.
and i totally agree with @Overjoyed: that if you were to invite her, she’d get her own invite.
Post # 10
Typically, you should invite both (all?) parts of a social unit. Since the girl friend shares a home with the married couple, that would make thema social unit under the normal definitions.
But, a three-person relationship isn’t particularly well recognized or accepted by many folks in society. If you (and/or your FI) feel particularly awkward about inviting the girlfriend on a day you are committing to each other for the rest of your lives, or if the “unusual” relationship is not particularly public (the husband and wife don’t advertise that they’re part of a “thruple”) it might be best to not invite the girlfriend. In either of those instances, you might want to talk to the married couple and feel out what they prefer or are “ok with.”
If you do invite everyone; I’d suggest addressing the envelope as suggested by @oracle: Though, I’d possibly try to fit all three names on one line – so “Jane Doe” doesn’t look like the child of Mr. and Mrs. John Smith. Also, whether or not all the names fit on one line, at least make sure you use the honorific “Ms.” (or “Miss, if she prefers) before Jane’s name.
Post # 11
You’ve never met her. So I vote no.
Post # 12
You know, I actually lean toward telling you to invite her. My logic is that if you would invite the live-in significant other of a (legally) single guest, you should invite this live-in significant other as well. Their structure of their relationship may not be traditional or the societal norm, but they’re still a unit, and I think it could be more problematic to only recognize the portion of the unit that’s legally married.
Post # 14
Thank you all for your input. I have been kind of torn between what I thought may be correct etiquette and how I actually feel about their situation (which I guess technically is none of my business) so you have all given me a lot to think about. Thank you 🙂