I just joined so I could add my statistics since these boards were so helpful when I was planning (especially when I was worried about how many would actually come — FYI it was 50%, which was even fewer than RSVP-ed yes). Then after my wedding, I found this board and was comforted to see that many people had my experience with receiving gifts. I have to say, I was surprised!
I was surprised by two things: by the number of people who did not give a card or gift, and by the amazing generosity of the people who did give. We received almost everything we hoped for, and we were truly embarrassed by many people’s generosity. I usually give in the $50 range because that is what I can afford. But the majority of our guests gave between $150 and $250. Thank you, everyone! We also got several gifts that were monetarily small, but which meant a lot to us because of the people and the meaning behind them. We love everything we got, and it goes to show you that a $20 gift can be very memorable!
So like everyone else here, I am hurt not by the lack of “stuff”, but by the lack of thought. Especially in a few cases. Here is my experience a few weeks after the wedding. When I list numbers, it is based on the invitations, not the number of people:
Guests who came: 27 gave something, 9 did not
Of those who came and did not give, 3 really should not have — we would have been embarrassed. Their coming was a huge gift. The remaining 6, well, I was surprised, but I’m over it. One said she was mailing something, but I’m not holding my breath. Another was a close relative who says it’s on the way (but she sort of complains about it….we didn’t bring it up!)
Of those who did not come: 11 gave something, 24 did not
Here is where I get upset. Of those who did not come and did not give — even a phone call, e-mail or card — there are a few who really hurt our feelings by overlooking this big deal in our lives. One aunt and uncle. Many of our friends to whom we have given thoughtfully in recent years. My fiance’s parents’ “best friends” (my parents’ best friends were absolutely gushing at our wedding, and they are truly like family to me….maybe it’s different in my husband’s family). Some friends who have seen my husband experience some pretty crappy life circumstances, which he magnificently overcame, and to whom we gave GENEROUSLY at their weddings within the past year. And they’re very wealthy. It bugs me because I get defensive over my husband, who is AMAZING. He deserves better, and these friends have always been takers when it comes to him. But his other friends who came are wonderful, wonderful people, and their presence was the best gift we got.
Other things to know: 2 gifts came a couple weeks after the wedding (I think his mom’s Christmas letter reminded them), and there are also those 2 that are “on the way.” So they do dribble in. We might see a couple more. I personally like sending gifts after the fact so that I can write how much I enjoyed the wedding. And now I know, as the bride, that it’s fun to get a few more visits from the UPS man when you think it’s over!
At first, I was surprised, a little shocked by at least a couple people. Not in every case–we know some people’s circumstances prohibit them, and maybe they are embarrassed about not being able to give substantially so they don’t even send a card because they feel bad. I get it. I was pretty angry about a couple of people’s rudeness. But a few weeks later, I’m totally over it.
I am going to send thank-yous to those who came and did not give, to thank them for coming. I will wait until the holidays are over.