Wedding Etiquette Forum

Plus Ones and Significant Others: A Guide

phiraphira Bahstin member
5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
edited February 2014 in Wedding Etiquette Forum
This topic comes up all the time on this board. I'm glad people ask, but I thought it might be helpful to have a solid FAQ on the subject. Please let me know if I have any mistakes, if anything needs clarification, or if I'm missing some other good questions.

I'll be using a guest named Bob as an example. Bob will either be in a relationship with Riley, or he'll be single and would like to bring Alex as a guest.

What is the difference between a significant other and a "plus one?"

A significant other is the person that Bob is in a relationship with (spouse, fiance(e), girlfriend, boyfriend, life partner). If Bob is not in a relationship, he has no significant other, and is a truly single guest. A "plus one" is the guest of Bob that he brings to your wedding. It's a person of his choice, and can be a romantic date, a sibling, a parent, or a friend.

Major differences are that you need to invite significant others, and you don't need to offer guests the option to bring plus ones.

Who do I send the invitation to? How do I address the invitation?

You would send the invitation to the person who is your primary guest (Bob). If Bob and Riley are dating, address it to both of them by name. If Bob is single, and you are giving him a plus one, you send it to Bob "and Guest." When Bob RSVPs, if he invites his guest Alex, he should include his name on the RSVP. 

(Please note: If you have inner and outer envelopes, you would address them to Bob alone if he is single or does not live with Riley. Then, in the inner envelope, you would include Bob's name and Riley's name, or Bob's name "and Guest.")

I am on a serious budget/I have limited space. I need to cut my guest list. I want to invite Bob for sure, but I don't have room for Riley. Is it okay to just invite Bob?

No. 

But they're not married!

No.

They're not engaged!

No.

They're not living together!

No.

They've only been together for X months!

No.

They've broken up twice in the past! TWICE! How can this be true love?

No.

Listen. You might be a really shrewd observer of other people's personal lives. You might be a relationship expert. You might be trying to be as fair as possible about deciding who can bring a significant other. But you can't have a relationship cut-off like this.

When you invite a person and don't allow them to bring a significant other, you are implying, implicitly or explicitly, intentionally or unintentionally, that you don't consider their relationship valid or serious enough to warrant an invitation as a couple. When you invite significant others as long as people are engaged or married, you're telling those couples who have been together years and don't want to get married yet, "Your relationship isn't as valid as these other ones." When you invite people who have been together at least a year, you're telling that couple that's been together for 6 months and just signed a lease, "You're just not as serious a couple to me." 

It's very hurtful and sad to be in a relationship and not have other people recognize the validity of your relationship. It's even worse when the person who doesn't acknowledge the validity of your relationship is going to be celebrating the validity of THEIR relationship.

What about my 14-year-old cousin who wants to bring her boyfriend?

One big exception to "all significant others:" it's only required for adults (18 and older). You are welcome to make exceptions (for example, you might let your 17-year-old cousin bring her girlfriend), but you don't have to.

Okay, but I would totally be okay and understanding if I had to be invited somewhere without my significant other. We're all adults here! Can't we just suck it up for a few hours?

Just because you would be okay and understanding about the situation does not mean that all of your guests will be. Many of them may be very upset, even if they don't let you know they're upset. And again, consider that you're judging people's relationships as not-valid-enough on a day where you're asking all of your guests to acknowledge the validity of your relationship. It's hard for me to be happy for you on your wedding day when my partner had to stay home because he wasn't invited.

But we don't want strangers at our wedding! Do we have to let people bring significant others we've never met?

Yes, you need to invite significant others, even if you haven't met them. This is a real person that your guest is in a relationship with; the relationship is just as real and serious and valid as it would be if you had met the significant other.

But we REALLY do have a budget/limited space. We must cut the guest list. What can I do?

Cut couples. Seriously. It's rude to invite one half of a couple. It's not rude to have a small guest list. If you absolutely cannot cut your guest list any more than you already have, then you either need to increase your budget or find a bigger space.

I really hate Riley for [reasons]. Can I just invite Bob?

No. Just like you're not required to know Riley for her relationship with Bob to be valid, you don't have to LIKE her for it to be valid either. If you dislike Riley so much that you cannot stand the thought of inviting her to your wedding, then do not invite Bob either.

The exception to this is if the reasons you don't want to invite Riley are very serious and violence related, and you desperately want to invite Bob, or feel like it's inappropriate to not invite him. If Riley has threatened you, your partner, or your friends and family, shown physical aggression, perpetrated violence against you or other guests in the past, etc. etc., then you have a really good reason not to invite her.

If this is really the case, and you feel uncomfortable leaving Bob off your guest list (for example, if Bob is your beloved uncle who is like a father to you and Riley used to abuse you), then you need to talk to Bob about the situation. And you need to be prepared for Bob to say that he'd rather not come if Riley is not invited.

What do I do if Bob is single until two weeks before the wedding?

Instead of trying to come up with an arbitrary cut-off that depends on how serious you think a couple is, your cut-off is going to be 6-8 weeks before your wedding. Once your invitations go out, it's not fair for guests to hold you responsible for adding more people to the guest list, so if a new relationship starts during that time, you have our blessing to say, "Sorry" if Bob calls you up to say, "I have a new significant other!" two weeks before the wedding.

What if Bob is dating Riley when the invitations go out, and then they break up?

This situation gets a little more gray, but it's usually really manageable. If Bob is your primary guest (he's the person you wanted to invite; Riley would not be invited if you weren't inviting Bob), then he should assume that he is still invited. Riley should assume that she is not invited. It's easy to get super stressed about the possibility of Riley deciding to come to the wedding (she WAS invited, after all), but it's highly unlikely unless you were also close enough to Riley that you WOULD have invited her even if you weren't inviting Bob. Basically, don't stress about this. Unless you and Riley are also very close, she likely will not want to come to the wedding.

If Bob and Riley break up after invitations go out, and Riley isn't coming to the wedding, do I have to let Bob bring someone else?

You don't have to, especially if you're on a budget, and/or if no other single guests can bring a plus one. It's often a nice guesture, though, especially if Bob is going to be sitting with a lot of couples, or if he's really hurting from the break-up. It's entirely up to you.

If I send an invitation to Bob and Riley, can Bob RSVP for himself and Alex?

No. Invitations are not tickets to events; they are non-transferrable. You decide who you want to invite to your wedding; random people can't just show up and crash (I mean, they can crash your wedding, but that's what security is for). If Bob RSVPs for Alex when he was invited with Riley, call him up and talk to him.

I have no idea if Bob is in a relationship. Can I send him an invitation address to him "and Guest?"

Mostly no. First of all, "and Guest" means he can bring anyone he wants as a plus one, even if he's in a relationship. So he could be dating Riley and RSVP for himself and Alex, and you would need to honor that. Second of all, it feels really cruddy to get an invitation addressed to you "and Guest" when you're in a relationship. I know from experience.

So what can you do? Make an effort to find out if Bob has a significant other; you can always directly ask him. If you're too shy for that, try checking social media or asking family or mutual friends. Make the effort for real: It's better to have to ask Bob if he's in a relationship than to just assume he isn't.

If you've exhausted EVERY effort and you still have no idea if Bob is in a relationship, then you can either send him an invitation addressed just to him, or (if you're prepared for him to bring anyone he wants) address it to him and a guest.

Bob is single, and he's in the wedding party. We can't afford to let single guests bring plus ones. Do we need to let Bob bring a guest?

You do not need to let single members of the wedding party bring guests. However, it's strongly recommended if you can manage it, and it's usually considered okay to let wedding party members bring plus ones even if you're not letting all guests bring them.

Bob is in the wedding party, and he's bringing Riley/Alex. We have a head table. Do I need to seat Riley/Alex at the head table?

Here's where tradition and etiquette conflict. A traditional head table does not include significant others or plus ones of the wedding party members. However, it's very rude to seat a couple apart (whether they're two people in a relationship or a wedding guest and their plus one). If you want to have a head table, seat your wedding party members next to their guests. After all, you will not spend very much time with them at the table (you're going to be up and about almost the entire night when you're not eating), so it makes sense to seat them with the person they came with.

Many couples choose to have a sweetheart table or a King's table instead of a head table so that they don't have to choose between having a traditional head table and being courteous to wedding party guests.

Bob is single. We'd like to give him a plus one, but we REALLY don't like Alex and would prefer it if Bob brought someone else. How can we handle this?

You have two options: either don't give Bob a plus one, or accept that he can bring Alex if he wants to. Sorry. Once you write, "and Guest," you no longer get a say in who the guest is.

Again, the one exception is if Alex has been threatening or violent towards you or other guests. If that's the case, if Bob RSVPs for himself and Alex, call him up and explain the situation. Again, be prepared for Bob to be upset and decline the invitation.

Bob is single. We can't afford/don't have space to give single people plus ones. How do we let Bob know that he can't bring a plus one?

You send him an invitation addressed only to him. If you have RSVP cards that say, "We have reserved ___ seat(s) in your honor," you write "1." Please do not write anything on your invitation, RSVP cards, or wedding website telling people that they cannot bring plus ones unless otherwise indicated on their specific invitation. Please assume the best of your guests!

But what if he RSVPs for himself and Alex?

Call him up and explain that the invitation was just for him, and that you can't afford/don't have space for plus ones. Be polite.

We can't afford/don't have space to give all single people plus ones. Is it okay to let some people bring guests, but not others?

Yes. We recommend giving plus ones in circles. Basically, if you're letting one single member of the wedding party bring a guest, it's good etiquette to allow all single members of the wedding party to bring a guest. If you're letting some of your single high school friends bring a guest, it's nice to let all of your single high school friends bring a guest. Etc. etc.

It's also a nice gesture to let guests bring plus ones if they're traveling from out of town (a guest means company while traveling and a person they can split hotel/rental car costs with), if they don't know many/any people at the wedding besides the couple, or if you know you would like to seat them at a table with a lot of couples.

We're on a budget/have limited space, so I need to make a guest list in advance. Obviously, some single people might not be single by the time the invitations are sent out. How can we account for new relationships while making our guest list so far ahead of time?

When you write up your guest list, list all significant others as you go, and give any single guests a plus one (I write it into my spreadsheet as "Guest" and "Guest +1"). While it's all but guaranteed that your final guest list will be smaller (even if you do let single guests bring plus ones), this way you can be confident that you won't be surprised with new relationships.

Due to budget/space, we did not let all/any single guests bring plus ones. Now the RSVPs are rolling in and we've gotten enough declines to let single guests bring plus ones. Would this be B-listing?

No. It all comes down to this question: "Is this a person that you would be inviting if they weren't a plus one?" There is a difference between, "Well, we got enough declines, Bob, so come to our wedding!" and, "Hey, Bob, if you'd like to bring someone to our wedding, we just wanted to let you know there's room."

See the difference? Bob's your guest; the plus one is Bob's guest. His guest isn't someone you were going to invite anyway (if they were, you'd already have invited them).

Why is this even important? Who cares? Shouldn't my guests just be happy for me on my wedding day? If our guests really love us, they'll just be happy for us and glad to attend, even without their significant other.

Welcome to the Etiquette board, where we're working hard to help everyone practice good etiquette. The purpose of etiquette is to be polite and fair to all of your guests. Even if you're a bride or groom, you're creating an event for your guests; their enjoyment is a priority. You are inviting them to an event so they can celebrate with you. Attending your wedding should be an honor you're bestowing, not a privilege they must sacrifice for. If you treat it like a privilege, as if they should just be grateful you invited them, then you're less likely to have a wedding people will really like. If you treat it like an honor, as if you're excited to host them, you're more likely to look out for their comfort and well-being.

And if your guests love you enough to not care if you invite their significant others, I hope that you love your guests enough to invite their significant others in the first place. It's a two-way street.
Anniversary
now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
image
KeptInStitchescookie0803SammiNJonniMGPluckysnorkelmiaawallacePeaseblossom55WeeshrajahmddoeydoauriannaHeatherKathikebikebemerryartbyallieRebeccaB88NYCBruinhuskypuppy14Cookie PusherAPDSS22pinkshorts27hnkirk81kaitlynmichelleSKPM[Deleted User]Jen4948InkdancerTeddy917BMoreBride6Liatris2010SP29PrettyGirlLostei34indianaalumAmyzen83erinlin25rjamison721KatWAGlabrolizybeffashleyepKatieinBklnashley8918soccrluvr09[Deleted User]downtondivaahoywedding
«1

Re: Plus Ones and Significant Others: A Guide

  • @KnotPorsha can this be made into a sticky please?
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    doeydoPrettyGirlLost
  • rajahmdrajahmd Galifrey member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    The only thing I disagree with is the sitting of SO's at the head table. I don't think it's correct to say "well tradition says...". I think that should say you have to find a way to let them sit together, whether that means having a large king's table, a smaller wedding party table with just MOH and BM and their SO's, or a sweetheart table.
    Anniversary
    Liatris2010Amyzen83luckysnorkelaleighc3
  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    @RajahBMFD Yeah, I was having trouble with that one; there was recently a dust-up about whether or not it was okay to have a head table with no dates. I didn't want to sound too biased, but honestly ... it's really pretty rude to seat people apart, plain and simple. I've edited the FAQ; let me know what you think.
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
  • Fran1985 Fran1985 Narnia member
    Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    I didn't read the whole thing but the one thing I disagree on, although I am probably in the minority, is not inviting an SO if they have done something awful to you. I think you still don't split the couple, but you don't invite either of them.

    image
    aleighc3
  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited February 2014
    @Fran1985 This situation comes up sometimes because people have a dear loved one they want to invite, and the loved one is married to someone who's done something terrible. For example, you want to invite your brother, but not his wife who has stolen money from you, or you want to invite your grandmother, but not your catastrophically abusive grandfather. In those cases, I think that people should talk to the person they still want to invite to get an idea of whether that person would still come to the wedding without their partner.

    However, I will adjust the FAQ: if you don't like the SO, and REALLY don't want them there, then don't invite either person. Let me know what you think.
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
  • The consensus of the current group of regulars here is well stated in the above post, but does not agree with the traditional etiquette, with standard protocol from the most authoritative sources, or with most wedding-etiquette experts.

    Traditional etiquette holds that a hostess is responsible to her guests for whomever they might meet while under her roof. That means she has a responsibility to know all her guests or at the minimum, to have had someone she trusts vouch for them personally. So in fact she should not be giving anyone a carte blanche to bring strangers. The usual way this advice is given by conservative etiquette experts is 'no invitation should ever state "And Guest", unless the invitee's actual name happens to be "Guest"'.

    What is the difference between a significant other and a "plus one?"

    Traditional etiquette does not recognize either category. Traditional etiquette, standard protocol, and the majority of etiquette writers do acknowledge that married couples, couples who are engaged to be married, and couples who are living together as if they are married regardless of what you think you know about their legal married status, should both be invited if either one is invited, unless the social event is a ladies-only or gentlemen-only event. At a wedding, where the focus is on the importance of permanent public commitment, it is even more obvious that marital commitment should be honoured by inviting both members of a married, to-be-married, or equivalent-to-married couple.

    Who do I send the invitation to? How do I address the invitation?
     
    Good manners do not allow you to tell your guests that you only want them around as a means of getting some other guest to come. You send each guest an invitation, by his or her own name, to his or her own address. If Bob and Riley are dating, and you wish to invite both of them, then you send each one a separate invitation at his own address. Even if you are just inviting Riley as a favour to Bob, then you get Riley's address from Bob and send him his own invitation. If Bob is single, and you want to invite someone for him to travel with, you talk to him and ask him for both the name and the address of the person he wishes to escort. Each person so invited should reply for himself or herself.
     
    Couples  who are married or co-habiting can both be named on the same invitation, and can reply as a couple.

    I am on a serious budget/I have limited space. I need to cut my guest list. I want to invite Bob for sure, but I don't have room for Riley. Is it okay to just invite Bob?
     
    If Bob and Riley are married, or are living together as if married, then you must invite Riley too. If they live separately then you have to use some judgement. Obviously you do not want to harm your friendship with Bob, and if he feels entitled to be treated as inseparable from Riley, inviting him alone might well damage your friendship. If he is still habitually accepting solo invitations and entertains solo himself, then inviting him alone should not cause a problem. You will have to treat each situation individually and thoughtfully.

    But they're not married!

    If they are living together and present themselves socially as a couple, then you must assume they are married. If they are living separately and have separate-but-overlapping social lives, then you must use your judgement.

    They're not engaged!
     
    If they are living together, that doesn't matter. If they are not living together but  present themselves socially as a couple and have done so for some time, then your judgement will probably lead you to treat them as engaged. If they are a new item, then they probably understand that, just as it may take some time for them to feel ready to be engaged, it may take their social group some time to recognize them as a couple. You are under no obligation to invite an unengaged boyfriend or girlfriend whom you do not know, but again it is a matter for judgement.

    They're not living together!

     
    How delightfully old-fashioned of them. You are under no obligations unless they are married or engaged -- but since one or both of them are your friends, use your best judgement and be gracious and generous.

    They've only been together for X months!

    Then you are under no obligations, but there's no time like the present to start building your friendship with the new boyfrind or girlfriend.

    They've broken up twice in the past! TWICE! How can this be true love?

    Who can understand someone else's version of true love? You're under no obligation -- but don't gossip about their break-ups. If they do get engaged and become married, you'll want to be in a position to be a friend to both of them.

    Realistically, marital commitment really is different from dating. If it were not, then people would not be so willing to go to the effort of planning a wedding; and other people would not be so adamant about not extending the privilege of a bride at her wedding to the non-wedding parties that they decry as "PPDs". So recognizing the marital relationship, implicitly or explicitly,as valid and serious in a way that dating is not.

    What about my 14-year-old cousin who wants to bring her boyfriend?

    Fourteen is a great age to learn that someone else's wedding is not "date-night", and that you can have fun, make witty table-conversation with whomever you are seated near, and dance with multiple dance-partners, even if you don't have a date for the night.
    Okay, but I would totally be okay and understanding if I had to be invited somewhere without my significant other. We're all adults here! Can't we just suck it up for a few hours?
     
    When you invite a husband without his wife, or the other way around, traditional etiquette expects the invited spouse to decline your invitation. Marital commitment comes before friendship. Be aware that with the modern sense of entitlement, many non-cohabiting unengaged couples will also decline your invitation if you invite only one. The difference is that if you try to separate a married couple, you are at fault. If an unmarried, unengaged non-cohabiting individual chooses to decline your invitation, that's their choice.
    But we don't want strangers at our wedding! Do we have to let people bring significant others we've never met?

    Well, traditional etiquette expects you to make an effort to meet the people who are important to your dear friends and relatives. You need to find time to do some non-wedding socializing during your months of planning, and some of that socializing should probably go toward getting to know your friends' boyfriends and girlfriends. Then they won't be strangers, whether you end up inviting them to your wedding or not.
     
    But we REALLY do have a budget/limited space. We must cut the guest list. What can I do?
     
    The best course of action, is to look at your guestlist first, and if it is bigger than your budget or your venue, choose a different venue and a less expensive standard of hospitality: then you do not have to cut anyone. But if you do have to cut your guest-list, and end up cutting someone who is married, engaged or living together as if married, then cut both members of that couple.
    I really hate Riley for [reasons]. Can I just invite Bob?
    If you really hate Riley, then your impetus in inviting Bob is that you want Bob to choose between his friendship for you and his love for Riley. And if he is not that serious about Riley, he might choose friendship. But if he really does love Riley, then he might just choose her and drop your friendship. Friendship is a precious thing: you'll have to use your judgement, but you might want to search your heart for a little bit of space you could offer Riley rather than risk losing Bob's friendship.

    What do I do if Bob is single until two weeks before the wedding?
     
    Bob is unlikely to suddenly get engaged or married, or move in with someone, two weeks before the wedding. If you are paying attention to the non-wedding-related parts of your social life, you'll have had a chance to meet Riley and see their relationship growing long before such a sudden change of status. And if you do see such a relationship blossoming, you'll want to stretch your guest list if you possibly can and send Riley an invitation.

    What if Bob is dating Riley when the invitations go out, and then they break up?
     
    People break up. Even married people get divorced. But social responsibility will have led you to be friendly with both of them, so if they both still choose to attend your wedding, just sit them well apart from each other and trust them to act like adults. You would not have previously made it clear to Riley that she's only welcome if Bob wants her there, because that would be unkind to Riley and Riley is a real individual person with feelings too. In fact, you'll know that you've successfully pulled off a hostess's responsibility to make every guest feel welcome, if Riley does come to your wedding.
     
    If Bob and Riley break up after invitations go out, and Riley isn't coming to the wedding, do I have to let Bob bring someone else?
     
    You can always send out an extra invitation to someone if you think their presence will contribute to your other guests' enjoyment. But remember, every guest is your guest -- not Bob's --  and you need to extend the invitation. It is also your responsibility to make sure that your seating plans give every guest the best possible chance of having pleasant table conversation, whether or not they come as members of a couple.
     
    I have no idea if Bob is in a relationship. Can I send him an invitation address to him "and Guest?"
     
    Ask Bob directly whether there is anyone he would like you to invite. Get the name, address and title of that person, so that you can send their invitation to their home address. And if Bob and his friend live near enough to you, make an attempt to meet that person.
     
    Bob is single, and he's in the wedding party. We can't afford to let single guests bring plus ones. Do we need to let Bob bring a guest?

    Nobody should be bringing guests: you get to issue all the invitations yourself. If Bob has someone he wants you to invite, he should introduce her to you. You still do not need to invite her, of course, unless she and Bob suddenly get engaged. Again, it is a case where you need to use good judgement.
     
    Bob is in the wedding party, and he's bringing Riley/Alex. We have a head table. Do I need to seat Riley/Alex at the head table?
     
    Traditionally, members of the wedding party were always supposed to be single. It makes sense, that a husband or wife (or equivalent-to-spouse) has family responsibilities that take priority. Nowadays no-one cares whether their wedding-party members are married or not but, part of the price of discarding little bits of tradition, is that you might have to discard other related bits. If your wedding party have partners, then you need to accomodate their partners in your plans for the day, including limousines, photo-shoots, and whatever other business you have going on.
     
    Seating at dinner, however, is not a big deal. At formal parties the rule is that spouses should never be seated together: so if Riley and Bob are married you can simply deal with them as you would any other married couple. If Riley and Bob are engaged, then traditional etiquette says they should be seated together. Whether you seat them separately or together, you still have to put the effort into your seating plan to ensure that every guest, Bob and Riley included, has a set of tablemates whome they will find friendly and interesting.
     
    of You are not required to seat Riley/Alex with Bob at the head table. However, it's really strongly recommended that you seat them together, especially if Riley/Alex doesn't know other people at the wedding.
     
    Bob is single. We'd like to give him a plus one, but we REALLY don't like Alex and would prefer it if Bob brought someone else. How can we handle this?
    When you follow traditional etiquette, and issue all the invitations yourself, by name, to each guest's own address, then you are in the driver's seat. You do not have to invite Alex. You do have to make sure that the guests you do invite include some with whom Bob will enjoy spending the evening.
    We can't afford/don't have space to give all single people plus ones. Is it okay to let some people bring guests, but not others?
     
    What is proper, is for every guest that is invited to be invited by you, personally. That way no-one is bringing their own guests, and everyone is treated fairly.
    It's also a nice gesture if guests are traveling from out of town,  to make sure that you .do invite someone that they could travel with.
     
    Due to budget/space, we did not let all/any single guests bring plus ones. Now the RSVPs are rolling in and we've gotten enough declines to let single guests bring plus ones. Would this be B-listing?

    Well, you should not be "letting guests bring plus ones", but you have been given a little leeway which is very nice for when Bob asks you "is there any possibility you might have an invitation for Alex?" Then you do indeed send Alex an invitation. She is still your guest, and will probably still be happy to get an invitation.  
     
  • rajahmdrajahmd Galifrey member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary First Answer
    phira said:

    @RajahBMFD Yeah, I was having trouble with that one; there was recently a dust-up about whether or not it was okay to have a head table with no dates. I didn't want to sound too biased, but honestly ... it's really pretty rude to seat people apart, plain and simple. I've edited the FAQ; let me know what you think.

    I like the new version better. Great work!
    Anniversary
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Bravo Phira!
    image
    image

    image


    Amyzen83
  • I love that because DH and I were well established for over 2 years but neither living together nor engaged that AroundTheBlock advises one to use her best judgment.

    I know *I* just used *MY* best judgement in what I think of such an asinine notion.
    AddieCakerajahmd[Deleted User]
  • WinstonsGirlWinstonsGirl The Cold North member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited February 2014
    @AroundTheBlock - I didn't read all of that, cos it was way too long, but please don't tell me that my Uncle and his girlfriend, who have dated for over 20 years now and have never lived together aren't serious and don't need to be invited together.  Many people would have the "best judgement" of I can't afford plus ones, so s/he isn't invited.  That's bullshit.  It doesn't matter how long anyone has been dating.  If they say they're dating/in a relationship, then invite them both

    ETA - If you want your loved ones to value and respect your relationship, why aren't you valuing and respecting theirs??

    PrettyGirlLostAmyzen83luckysnorkelRebeccaB88
  • Once again, @AroundTheBlock offers ridiculous, asinine advice that is barely comprehensible. GTFO these boards, good god.
    rajahmdgrumbledoreRebeccaB88
  • Fran1985 Fran1985 Narnia member
    Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    phira said:
    @Fran1985 This situation comes up sometimes because people have a dear loved one they want to invite, and the loved one is married to someone who's done something terrible. For example, you want to invite your brother, but not his wife who has stolen money from you, or you want to invite your grandmother, but not your catastrophically abusive grandfather. In those cases, I think that people should talk to the person they still want to invite to get an idea of whether that person would still come to the wedding without their partner.

    However, I will adjust the FAQ: if you don't like the SO, and REALLY don't want them there, then don't invite either person. Let me know what you think.
    @phira I get why the situation comes up, I guess in my mind, I wouldn't want to invite someone who was married to someone who stole from me (with no apology, remorse, etc) I think in my mind I treat them as a social unit for bad behavior too, which may be too judgmental of me. 

    image
  • blabla89blabla89 Atlanta member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    phira said:
    @Fran1985 This situation comes up sometimes because people have a dear loved one they want to invite, and the loved one is married to someone who's done something terrible. For example, you want to invite your brother, but not his wife who has stolen money from you, or you want to invite your grandmother, but not your catastrophically abusive grandfather. In those cases, I think that people should talk to the person they still want to invite to get an idea of whether that person would still come to the wedding without their partner.

    However, I will adjust the FAQ: if you don't like the SO, and REALLY don't want them there, then don't invite either person. Let me know what you think.
    @phira I get why the situation comes up, I guess in my mind, I wouldn't want to invite someone who was married to someone who stole from me (with no apology, remorse, etc) I think in my mind I treat them as a social unit for bad behavior too, which may be too judgmental of me. 
    There was a thread around this issue recently - I think @phira's probably thinking of the same one:

    http://forums.theknot.com/discussion/comment/7036827

    Seeing it in this context, most of us agreed that it was best for the poster to invite her friend, but not her friend's SO. I think this is a very rare circumstance. But I do get what you're saying about not wanting to invite someone whose SO has done something hurtful, especially if they were complicit.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker



  • Once again, @AroundTheBlock offers ridiculous, asinine advice that is barely comprehensible. GTFO these boards, good god.

    And sounds like it came from the 1600s.

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

  • MGPMGP member
    Knottie Warrior 500 Love Its 500 Comments Name Dropper
    edited February 2014
    phira said:
    @RajahBMFD Yeah, I was having trouble with that one; there was recently a dust-up about whether or not it was okay to have a head table with no dates. I didn't want to sound too biased, but honestly ... it's really pretty rude to seat people apart, plain and simple. I've edited the FAQ; let me know what you think.

    Excellent work! Adding my two cents about head tables in general - personally I cannot stand them. They just look so pretentious. And seriously give your wedding party a break! Isolating them during dinner is just another way to use them as props. They should officially be "off duty" after the ceremony and pictures. Let them sit with their SO or other friends for crying out loud!
  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    acove2006 said:
    Once again, @AroundTheBlock offers ridiculous, asinine advice that is barely comprehensible. GTFO these boards, good god.

    And sounds like it came from the 1600s.
    Honestly, it just sounds like they took every point I made and made up some pseudo-etiquette-sounding bullshit that was the opposite.

    @Fran1985 I totally agree with you. I've had a hard time explaining that to my partner sometimes. He gets very, "Well, we can't punish them just because they're with someone awful!" but this person made the choice to be in this relationship, and while I can reasonably be around their awful significant other, I feel like it's asking me to be a martyr to have to invite them to my home and host them. Ya know?
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
  • phira said:
    acove2006 said:
    Once again, @AroundTheBlock offers ridiculous, asinine advice that is barely comprehensible. GTFO these boards, good god.

    And sounds like it came from the 1600s.
    Honestly, it just sounds like they took every point I made and made up some pseudo-etiquette-sounding bullshit that was the opposite.

    @Fran1985 I totally agree with you. I've had a hard time explaining that to my partner sometimes. He gets very, "Well, we can't punish them just because they're with someone awful!" but this person made the choice to be in this relationship, and while I can reasonably be around their awful significant other, I feel like it's asking me to be a martyr to have to invite them to my home and host them. Ya know?
    That's how I feel, too. Grown adults have to live with the consequences of their actions, and if that means missing out on social events because of the bad behavior of the SO they chose to commit themselves to, then so be it. I would just explain, "Friend, I really want you to be at my wedding, but I'm not comfortable with SO being present due to xyz. I hope you will still be able to attend, and if not I completely understand." 
    PrettyGirlLost
  • I don't think ATB's advice is poor, but it is outdated.

    There are many serious relationships where couples do not live together. 

    We had a head table, and the SOs of the WP sat at it as well. 
    PrettyGirlLostAmyzen83perdonami
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited February 2014
    SP29 said:
    I don't think ATB's advice is poor, but it is outdated.

    There are many serious relationships where couples do not live together. 

    We had a head table, and the SOs of the WP sat at it as well. 
    Agreed on all accounts.  FI and I have been together for 12 years and have never lived together. . . .

    ETA:  GG @phira!!

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    phira
  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    this thread was going so well until someone hi-jacked it with an awful revision. 




    Yeah, I have no idea what even happened.
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
    Amyzen83
  • Amyzen83Amyzen83 member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer First Anniversary
    edited February 2014
    @ AroundTheBlock,
    I get that this all may have been true at one point in history, but so was racism, marriage only between classes etc. In modern society, we are much more educated, and far less judgy. Also it is accepted to not have to be married to have children/cohabit etc. So therefore, modern etiquette is what we are discussing here. Not your medieval ideas! As for my bridal party, both sides are all full of engaged/married people because guess what??? Those are my nearest and dearest! What if I were the last of all my besties to get married? Do I just pick some single acquaintance who may or may not be a great friend because they're single? Hell to the no!
    jnissa
  • @phira what's your stance on friends who are married to person A but are having an affair with person B and want to bring person B over person A because they "claim" to be in a relationship with person B but are married to person A, and frankly you don't approve of adultery?
  • phiraphira Bahstin member
    5000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary 5 Answers
    Amyzen83 said:
    @phira what's your stance on friends who are married to person A but are having an affair with person B and want to bring person B over person A because they "claim" to be in a relationship with person B but are married to person A, and frankly you don't approve of adultery?
    Approval of adultery aside, I'm assuming that person A would PROBABLY notice if his or her spouse went to a wedding with someone else. Unless they were estranged or separated, then the married couple gets invited.

    I didn't go into what to do about polyamorous relationships because it's really particular to each social unit, but honestly, even if this affair weren't secret to the person's spouse (person A), person and person A would still be a social unit.
    Anniversary
    now with ~* INCREASED SASSINESS *~
    image
    Amyzen83
  • That's what I thought and I was kinda wondering about Polyamourous relationships cus I've been watching too much sister wives lately.., it's an interesting show but definately not my style. Teehee! But I definately think that's a whole other topic all together. But I originally asked the question about affairs because it has been brought up on these boards.
This discussion has been closed.
Choose Another Board
Search Boards