Etiquette

Family Paying

knottie053332b42ad3cc78knottie053332b42ad3cc78 Burlington, Ontario member
First Comment
I'm VERY newly engaged and have just started getting into this whole budgeting nightmare. My dad has just called me up and stated he was surprised I haven't asked him to contribute and that he would like to. We're going to have a discussion on the weekend but I'm a bit stuck on how this conversation should go!

For some background: My dad seems to be pretty well off... Large home, plentiful vacations and I know he paid for the liquor and engagement party with his partner for her child last year. 

Our venue we've picked is on the pricer side, so ideally I'd like him to help with the cost of that. I'm hoping to ask him what he's comfortable with.. but I was hoping to get other peoples thoughts and what the heck do I do if he asks me to give him a number! 

Re: Family Paying

  • knottie053332b42ad3cc78knottie053332b42ad3cc78 Burlington, Ontario member
    First Comment


    "Hi Dad - thanks for offering to contribute. What did you have in mind?"

    Let him run the conversation. Do not say things like "well we want help with our venue and that costs $X." There are two basic ways people can contribute. They can give a lump sum or they can pay for certain things (like your cake, your stationary, etc.). Let him decide and let him throw out numbers, not you.

    Money often comes with strings. Know that going in.


    Oh boy do I know about those strings. It's one of the reasons I haven't asked either parent to contribute. I think you're right and that I definitely need to let him drive the conversation though. 


    I'm not loving the idea of taking money from people but with how expensive weddings can be I shouldn't be turning my nose up at any offerings. 
  • If you anticipate drama, ask for his contribution to go toward specific things. That way, he only has a say in those things. Personally, I would choose things that are drama free - like flowers, cake, transportation, or tables/chairs/linens. 
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    InLoveInQueens
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    Ditto PPs. Also, depending on the type of drama you are expecting, or his personality (does he make everything difficult?) I might not take any money at all. Only you know if the strings are worth it. For example, I would never take money from my dad's mom. It simply isn't worth the pain and drama. 


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  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 5 Answers
    Before accepting any contributions from your father, I would ask him what his expectations are: How many people, and who, does he want to invite? Is there anything specific he does or does not want the money spent on? Any restrictions on vendors? What are the maximum and minimum amounts he will contribute? When will he provide it? In what form (direct payment to vendors, lump sum to you, etc.) I suggest getting whatever you can in writing. It may not be legally enforceable, but at least you have documentation of his promises if there's any possibility that he'll claim that he didn't make those promises down the road.

    Whatever you do, don't make any plans that involve any funding from him until you actually receive it, and don't accept any funds from him with strings attached if you don't want to accept the restrictions.
    charlotte989875InLoveInQueensernursej
  • ernursejernursej member
    Tenth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer

    Agree with PPs. I would also add that it is best not to pick venues until you have an idea of budget.

  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    5000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    NakedSun said:

    I'm VERY newly engaged and have just started getting into this whole budgeting nightmare. My dad has just called me up and stated he was surprised I haven't asked him to contribute and that he would like to. We're going to have a discussion on the weekend but I'm a bit stuck on how this conversation should go!

    For some background: My dad seems to be pretty well off... Large home, plentiful vacations and I know he paid for the liquor and engagement party with his partner for her child last year. 

    Our venue we've picked is on the pricer side, so ideally I'd like him to help with the cost of that. I'm hoping to ask him what he's comfortable with.. but I was hoping to get other peoples thoughts and what the heck do I do if he asks me to give him a number! 


    Do you and your FI have any issue settled?  Have you considered the size of the guest list at all?  If you have already chosen a venue I would assume you have a guest list drawn up.  Since you have chosen this venue prior to speaking to anyone else contributing, are you prepared to foot the entire bill?

    I would discuss things with your FI prior to meeting with your dad.  Are you both willing to accept any strings, such as the inclusion of additional guests?  Would your venue choice allow for a larger guest list?  Will accepting money from your dad cause/create headaches with your mother?  Is your venue all inclusive?  If your dad offers to offset the liquor bill, you might need to have a breakdown of costs.  Do you want an engagement party if one is offered?  If dad wants to have some control with things his finances provide, what items are you and FI willing to relinquish?  Do you and FI know how you want to word the invitations?  All of these issues will often come into question when people other than the bride and groom help finance the wedding.

    I agree with PP's that suggested you let dad drive the discussion. 
    SP29short+sassy
  • adk19adk19 member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    When my dad made the same comment, I blew it off.  I am throwing a party.  This has nothing to do with him.  I hope he lets it go and just decides to buy a couple of rounds for people at the post party, then gives me the rest of his "contribution" in the form of a check after the event.  I really don't want to deal with him or my mother making any suggestions about how I should host this party.
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