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Etiquette

Inviting Aunts and Uncles - Not Cousins

My fiance and I are planning on having a small wedding and reception.  It is being held about 1.5+ hours from where any of our family lives.  Our list is cut to only 100 people.  We don't want our guests to be only family only and no friends.  The trouble is I have a large familly.  Each of my parents have 3+ siblings and each family has 3-5 kids who are almost all married or in long term relationships - some of them with kids.  I was going to invite my aunts and uncles only - not my cousins or their kids.  I rarely see any of them - they are what I call "holiday family".  Thoughts???

Re: Inviting Aunts and Uncles - Not Cousins

  • My fiance and I are planning on having a small wedding and reception.  It is being held about 1.5+ hours from where any of our family lives.  Our list is cut to only 100 people.  We don't want our guests to be only family only and no friends.  The trouble is I have a large familly.  Each of my parents have 3+ siblings and each family has 3-5 kids who are almost all married or in long term relationships - some of them with kids.  I was going to invite my aunts and uncles only - not my cousins or their kids.  I rarely see any of them - they are what I call "holiday family".  Thoughts???

  • twilight.rosetwilight.rose
    1000 Comments Combo Breaker
    member
    edited August 2010
    That's fine. Just make sure each invitation is clearly addressed to only your aunt and uncle.
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  • Honestly?  I think this is a question you're better off discussing with someone who knows your family, such as a parent.  It's really hard to offer constructive advice when we just don't know you or your family dynamic.

    In general -- it's fine to draw the line at aunts and uncles if your budget can't accommodate cousins.  Just be prepared with a firm but polite explanation when family members question the decision or attempt to RSVP for uninvited children.
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  • I agree with twilight.rose:  make sure each invitation is clearly addressed to only your aunt and uncle.
  • I had the same struggle...

    I am only inviting aunts and uncles...and I don't even see some of them for years on end.  My one aunt whom I hadn't talked to in a couple years started telling me to invite all these cousins...and their wives...and kids.  I was just like yeah, uh huh...and then said we were really trying to limit due to budget and space restrictions. 

    But I did discuss with my parents beforehand and made my case.  My dad seemed a little surprised but now completely understands and is fine with it.  Should be interesting once the invites get sent and  RSVPs come back :) 
  • I think that especially since the cousins are now independent adults and not technically part of the aunt and uncle family unit, it's fine.
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  • You are fine to do it as long as you stick to a general rule, and don't invite any of the cousins.  I invited all of H's and my first cousins.  But we drew the line after that.  My great aunts and uncles were invited but none of their kids, who would be my 2nd cousins.  Since it was a broad cut everyone understood. 
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  • It really depends on your own family dynamics. In my family, that would be a horrible thing to do and would cause a lot of problems. In Dh's family, it would probably go barely noticed and I don't think anyone would have any issue with it. Have you discussed this with your parents?
  • None of my cousins were invited because they're either children or much older than me (and international).  My FI's family is close to him, so most of them are invited.  My parents didn't care about having my cousins around, my FILs did care, so there you go.
  • I'm in the same situation...my family is very large also, and I usually only see my cousins at Christmas time so I'm not inviting any of them.  On the other hand, FH's family is much smaller and a lot closer...they all get together a few times a month so we are inviting all of his cousins.  And even with doing that our family guest list has almost the same number of people. 

    The hardest part is that people just assume that they are getting an invite to your wedding.  I haven't really said anything to anyone yet...I figure I'll cross that bridge when I get to it, but it's going to be really hard to explain to people that the money just wasn't in my budget. 

    My parent's were okay with not inviting my cousins but we decided that it was an all or nothing situation...I couldn't invite some of my cousins and not others, because that would cause a problem. 

    I'd say that you just need to talk with your parent's and see how they think it will be received by your family and go from there and try to work it out.  Good luck! :)
  • In Response to Re: Inviting Aunts and Uncles - Not Cousins:
    That's fine. Just make sure each invitation is clearly addressed to only your aunt and uncle.
    Posted by twilight.rose
    Agreed.  And I will add that while it's fine that you aren't inviting cousins, don't make ANY exceptions if you're closer with one or two cousins than the others.  That's when feelings will get hurt.
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  • rcrivardrcrivard
    First Comment
    member
    edited August 2010
    I did the same thing. We wanted only 90 guests or less for a sit-down dinner, so we had to cut the list at aunts & uncles and a few great-aunts&uncles who were close to us. No cousins. And yes, I felt bad about a few closer ones not being invited, but the rule is you can only invite all or none, or else feelings might get hurt. We just kept telling everyone that we are keeping it small for reception space and budget. Oh, and be prepared to have people be ignorant and RSVP their kids even when you specifically addressed only the adults. That's a tough one, but be firm!
  • I'm only inviting my cousins that have actually met my FI. Some I haven't seen in 10+ years so I feel justified leaving them out. My sister had them at her wedding so they might be expecting that I will invite them. Sucks to be them!
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  • As long as it's no cousins I think it's okay. I didn't invite my cousins and their families and that cut about 100 people total out. (Spouse, kids...)
    You just can't invite your 3 awesome cousins and not invite your 6 not so awesome cousins.
    People understand :)


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  • Thank you everyone for your valuable responses.  I have spoke with my parents about it and mom seems to agree, but dad's a little harder.  However, my future in-laws both see my point.  As it's been said a few times, as long as it's all or none, it's explained and addressed properly i think it will be just fine.  Thanks again!
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