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Etiquette

The Plus One Dilemma

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Re: The Plus One Dilemma

  • SKPMSKPM
    250 Love Its 100 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer
    member
    Question about addressing invites to SOs - if the couple does not live together, is it correct that I should send a separate invite to each person? This seems strange because I'm only inviting them because they're dating my friend/family member, but this makes it seems like they themselves are invited and that the invitation would still stand if the couple were to break up before the wedding. I know it's unlikely that person would still show up, but it just doesn't seem like the right way to go about sending the invitation.
    I believe that super-traditional etiquette dictates that you send a separate invitation to each member of the relationship. However, in modern society, the accepted norm seems to be to address the invitation to "Ms. Your Friend // Mr. Her Boyfriend" (on separate lines since they aren't married) and mail it to her address if she is the friend who would still be invited if they split up. If you are equally friends with both, I would still address it that way, but then invite them both separately instead if they were to break up.

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    KeptInStitchesPrettyGirlLost
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary Name Dropper
    member
    edited February 5
    Question about addressing invites to SOs - if the couple does not live together, is it correct that I should send a separate invite to each person? This seems strange because I'm only inviting them because they're dating my friend/family member, but this makes it seems like they themselves are invited and that the invitation would still stand if the couple were to break up before the wedding. I know it's unlikely that person would still show up, but it just doesn't seem like the right way to go about sending the invitation.
    Send the invite to the primary person you are inviting and add their guest's name to it.

    Mr. Joe Jones
    Ms. Sally Field
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    PrettyGirlLost
  • phiraphira
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers Name Dropper
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    Send one invitation to the primary guest (so if you're inviting your best friend and his boyfriend, you send it to your best friend).

    If you are doing inner envelopes:
    Address the outer envelope to just your best friend, and write his name and his boyfriend's name on the inner envelope.

    If you are not doing inner envelopes:
    Address the outer envelope to both as if they lived together.
    Anniversary
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    PrettyGirlLost
  • Thanks for the advice! That was my instinct, but I thought I had seen some posts saying otherwise.
  • Your second thoughts were well-advised: etiquette does indeed require that you treat all your guests equally: inviting them all by name, and sending them all invitations at their own address. Think about it: if you follow the logic that you should send only one invitation to the address of the person you feel closer too, then you are advertising to the other person "I don't like you as much as I like my buddy, nyah nyah." You learned in kindergarten not to say things like that.

    There are lots of etiquette violations that are usual and common -- everything from cash bars to explicit gift requests sent with the invitation. But that doesn't make them proper. Neither is the common practice of flaunting your "A" relationships in the face of your "B" guests proper.
  • emilya918emilya918
    First Comment
    member
    edited February 8
    For our wedding we are using the same etiquette as others' weddings that we've been to.  If the guest has a significant other that you are sure of (you and your fiance know them and they will more than likely still be together during your wedding) they are allowed to bring them as their plus one.  For guests who have no significant other and are OVER the age of 18, they are allowed a plus one as well.  As for guests UNDER the age of 18, no plus ones.  Its fair, simple, and reasonable.  As for addressing the invites, if the guest falls into the "plus one" category then on the inner envelope write "JOHN DOE and GUEST" or if you know the plus one's name "JOHN DOE and JANE SMITH".  For the guests not permitted a plus one then GUEST will not be addressed on the inner envelope.  I never understood the reasoning behind inner envelopes until this was explained to me.  You only have to hope that your guests understand this.  Its a pretty known rule that if "and guest" isn't written on the invite well then, no date for you!  We have been to many weddings like this and everyone we talked to was understanding of this rule.  Hope this helps!
  • I think you have to invite partners of long- term, engaged or married couples (no doubt about it). If you can't afford to invite everyone with a plus one, it's fine as long as your fair and even with all couples.
  • Question about addressing invites to SOs - if the couple does not live together, is it correct that I should send a separate invite to each person? This seems strange because I'm only inviting them because they're dating my friend/family member, but this makes it seems like they themselves are invited and that the invitation would still stand if the couple were to break up before the wedding. I know it's unlikely that person would still show up, but it just doesn't seem like the right way to go about sending the invitation.

    One invite is perfectly fine. I'm not 100% on this but I think the person you know or are closer to gets listed first/sent to their address. Even if they did break up before the wedding they would both still be invited. It's unlikely they would both come, but invites that are addressed to a name (not + guest) don't cease to exist due to a breakup. So in that regards, they are personally invited even though they're on a shared invite.

    After 6 years and 2 boys, finally tying the knot on October 27th, 2013!

  • I think you have to invite partners of long- term, engaged or married couples (no doubt about it). If you can't afford to invite everyone with a plus one, it's fine as long as your fair and even with all couples.
    ALL couples. The seriousness of other people's relationships is not yours to determine.
    This.  before I got engaged my sister was engaged and told me that my boyfriend (at the time) couldn't come unless we were engaged.

    As her MOH I was pretty shocked.  incidentally we DID get engaged before her wedding so he ended up going... but it still miffed me a bit.


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    grumbledorelc07
  • I think you have to invite partners of long- term, engaged or married couples (no doubt about it). If you can't afford to invite everyone with a plus one, it's fine as long as your fair and even with all couples.
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
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    grumbledore
  • I think you have to invite partners of long- term, engaged or married couples (no doubt about it). If you can't afford to invite everyone with a plus one, it's fine as long as your fair and even with all couples.
    You can't be "fair and even with all couples" if you're picking and choosing who is in an important and serious relationship and who is just f*ing around.  If a couple consider themselves in a relationship and act as a social unit, they should be invited together.  (I say acting as a social unit because if a guest is in an illicit or secret relationship where they do not claim to be in a relationship to anyone else/do not go out in public together a hostess cannot possibly know they're in a relationship or in the case of an illegal relationship like one between a minor and an adult, condone it.)  If you cannot afford to invite everyone with a possible relationship before invitations, cut back on your guest list or other areas of the budget to accommodate.

    If you have two people in a relationship that do not live together, the invite is sent to the person whom is your primary guest with their significant other listed on the inner envelope or on the outside envelope on a separate line.  Inner envelope is safer as some mail delivery persons can get picky and they can't make judgements on your inner envelope.

  • ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
  • Another reason why you wouldn't send separate invites to two people in a relationship: couples generally like to be recognized as a social unit, and therefore, they're invited together on one invitation. I would find it very odd if, for example, my boss sent myself and my boyfriend separate invitations to her upcoming wedding. She knows me personally, and while she's met him several times, I would prefer receiving the invite on our behalf.

    By sending separate invites, I'd take that to mean that we are seen as individual people, not a social unit, and that would bug me. I mean OBVIOUSLY we're our own individuals, but you know what I mean for the sake of the discussion.
    PrettyGirlLostSKPM
  • ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    You don't have to be a mind-reader to know if someone considers themself part of a couple, unless you are completely socially stunted and unable to interact with other human beings or even use The Google.
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    crunchymamaof2 manateehuggerJCbride2015rajahmd
  • Viczaesar said:
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    You don't have to be a mind-reader to know if someone considers themself part of a couple, unless you are completely socially stunted and unable to interact with other human beings or even use The Google.
    Nothing to add, but this made me laugh.
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  • ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    I know this is unpopular, but I kind of feel the same way. If I don't know someone is in a relationship and they aren't on FB or whatever, how DO I find out if they are in a couple?
    image
  • Another reason why you wouldn't send separate invites to two people in a relationship: couples generally like to be recognized as a social unit, and therefore, they're invited together on one invitation. I would find it very odd if, for example, my boss sent myself and my boyfriend separate invitations to her upcoming wedding. She knows me personally, and while she's met him several times, I would prefer receiving the invite on our behalf.

    By sending separate invites, I'd take that to mean that we are seen as individual people, not a social unit, and that would bug me. I mean OBVIOUSLY we're our own individuals, but you know what I mean for the sake of the discussion.
    I also feel like this sort of safe guards you against the guest's SO coming if they broke up.  What if they broke up a week before your wedding and the ex decided to come to the wedding to bother your guest?  

    Sending one invite and writing their names on the inner envelope is, I feel, the best way to go!
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    lc07
  • ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.

    Obviously if a guest was keeping their relationship a secret and didn't tell the B&G, they are not in the wrong for failing to invite. FFS.

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    JCbride2015
  • sarahufl said:
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    I know this is unpopular, but I kind of feel the same way. If I don't know someone is in a relationship and they aren't on FB or whatever, how DO I find out if they are in a couple?
    It's actually really simple- you call or email them and ask hem before you send out your invitations!
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    Officially an Old Married Hag!
    10.18.14

    grumbledore
  • ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    Huh?  You don't need to put an announcement in the paper every time you start dating someone.  Nor do you need to update your FB status.

    It's really easy for the bride and groom to call or email their friends and relatives who are single and ask them if they are in a relationship before sending out invitations.  This really isn't rocket surgery.
    image
    Officially an Old Married Hag!
    10.18.14

    grumbledore
  • sarahufl said:
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    I know this is unpopular, but I kind of feel the same way. If I don't know someone is in a relationship and they aren't on FB or whatever, how DO I find out if they are in a couple?
    It's actually really simple- you call or email them and ask hem before you send out your invitations!
    To be fair, FI weren't in a FB relationship for about 3 years (until we got engaged). IMO, if you are close enough to be invited to a person's wedding, you should know their relationship status without having to ask.
    image
  • sarahufl said:
    sarahufl said:
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    I know this is unpopular, but I kind of feel the same way. If I don't know someone is in a relationship and they aren't on FB or whatever, how DO I find out if they are in a couple?
    It's actually really simple- you call or email them and ask hem before you send out your invitations!
    To be fair, FI weren't in a FB relationship for about 3 years (until we got engaged). IMO, if you are close enough to be invited to a person's wedding, you should know their relationship status without having to ask.
    This is an overgeneralization that isn't always true. 

    Sometimes there are reasons for inviting people without knowing their relationship status at the moment. 

    Some examples:

    1) they may be someone who keeps getting together with and breaking up with people so their status may be changing all the time and you don't know exactly what it is at the time you send out invitations,

    2) this is a very distant relative or other person whom you're under parental pressure to invite and you haven't been in touch for some time so you don't know their situation,

    3) they might be a co-worker or group member whose partner you've never met or even heard about, assuming they have one, but the co-worker or group member might be part of a small group of people where you can't leave one out without things getting awkward.
    lc07
  • sarahufl said:
    sarahufl said:
    ALL couples.  Anyone who considers themselves in a couple.  You are not the judge.
    "Anyone who considers themselves in a couple" is not a reasonable criterion: hostesses are not mind-readers. At a minimum, couples must have made some sort of public declaration or demonstration of their couplehood, if they are planning to feel entitled to recognition as a couple.
    I know this is unpopular, but I kind of feel the same way. If I don't know someone is in a relationship and they aren't on FB or whatever, how DO I find out if they are in a couple?
    It's actually really simple- you call or email them and ask hem before you send out your invitations!
    To be fair, FI weren't in a FB relationship for about 3 years (until we got engaged). IMO, if you are close enough to be invited to a person's wedding, you should know their relationship status without having to ask.
    FB has nothing to do with it, many people don't like or use FB, and I don't agree with the bolded at all.

    FI has many cousins that are invited to the wedding and we don't know if they are currently seeing anyone, so we are going to ask.

    Ladies, save yourselves the headaches and drama, stop with the bolded line of thinking, and just ask people!  You have to get address info too right?  Kill two birds with one stone.
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    Officially an Old Married Hag!
    10.18.14

    grumbledorehuskypuppy14
  •      Were I doing a large wedding, I would probably NOT send a separate invite to dating couples where I knew only one of the people in the relationship. My cousin Claire is dating a guy. I have met him once and I bet he couldn't pick me out of a police line up. They don't live together. I would send an invite to my cousin with his name on it just so no one is confused. 

       I do realize this is against proper etiquette and I am not suggesting anyone else should do it. It's an etiquette breach I'm willing to make and accept responsibility for. 

     I'm just thinking that if my Fi had been sent an invitation with this name only on it, as is proper, for my college buddy's wedding we went to last year (Fi and my friend had never met until the wedding), he would wonder why this person he didn't know was inviting him to their wedding. We don't live together.

       Any couples who we had a relationship with both members we would send separate invites to if they don't live together. I would only commit this etiquette breach when I am pretty sure someone's SO didn't know who I am.
  • Fairyjen1 said:
         Were I doing a large wedding, I would probably NOT send a separate invite to dating couples where I knew only one of the people in the relationship. My cousin Claire is dating a guy. I have met him once and I bet he couldn't pick me out of a police line up. They don't live together. I would send an invite to my cousin with his name on it just so no one is confused. 

       I do realize this is against proper etiquette and I am not suggesting anyone else should do it. It's an etiquette breach I'm willing to make and accept responsibility for. 

     I'm just thinking that if my Fi had been sent an invitation with this name only on it, as is proper, for my college buddy's wedding we went to last year (Fi and my friend had never met until the wedding), he would wonder why this person he didn't know was inviting him to their wedding. We don't live together.

       Any couples who we had a relationship with both members we would send separate invites to if they don't live together. I would only commit this etiquette breach when I am pretty sure someone's SO didn't know who I am.
    To the bolded: yes, yes, and yes. I have been the fiancee who didn't get her own invite because the couple forgot to check whether or not we were living together. (We weren't). I then missed my bachelorette and bridal shower invites. It was not fun.
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  • Agree with PPs.  You don't ALWAYS know.  One of my best friends and BMs was sort of occasionally hooking up with this guy and I noticed they were hanging out - but almost always in a group of other people.  I had to ask her directly if they were together because she just isn't the sort of girl who will post it on FB or tell all her friends immediately.  Turns out they WERE together and she just hadn't told anyone yet.

    Especially if it's the very beginning of a relationship you just need to ask sometimes. 
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    PrettyGirlLostlc07
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