Hooo boy. This one’s going to be all fire and brimstone!
I think that it’s the being ASKED for cash that’s the problem for me.
1. I think that a gift should be something personal that reflects my relationship with the couple or symbolic of them starting out their relationship together. I’m old-fashioned that way. I like knowing that I helped them build their china collection and stuff. Now, I know that makes less and less sense with today’s registries which would have me buying like, towels, but that’s just how I feel.
2. Now THIS, I suspect is going to get me some flack, but here’s the issue with giving cash, specifically to peers (I may give cash to my peers children when I get older), as I see it: big things in people’s lives–a wedding, new home, honeymoon vacations, etc. are not my responsibilities to help pay for. It’s part of the reason I don’t like the logic of “oh, well we have all the stuff we need, so give us cash for our honeymoon/home repairs/down payment” because in my head it’s like, “stop buying so much stuff and you might have money for a vacation/home repairs/down payment.” I mean, part of getting married, in my view, is saying that the two people are adults. Well, adults have big responsibilities, like mortages and taxes, and travel, and student loans, and credit card debt etc. etc. and when you ask me to contribute cash, it’s like asking for me to help you pay for those things. It’s sort of similar in that I’m happy to give a baby gift but it’s not my responsibility to help pay for the kid to go to college.
I also don’t like the idea of giving cash at a wedding because it also suggests in a way that I’m offsetting the cost of the wedding. And again, to me, it’s like, why would I pay you to hang out at your wedding?
So I recognize that I’m fuddy-duddy and not many other people feel this way. I’m not advocating my perspective is perfect or should be a model for everyone at all. If you want to give cash, give cash. If you want to get cash and you don’t mind that there are people in the world who might feel like me, then go ahead and request it. But you asked, and there’s my answer.