Wedding Woes

My mom is KILLING my vibe!

cj3561cj3561 Connecticut
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FI and I have been engaged now for two weeks. It was not anything out of the blue, and my parents were both aware this was coming. We have been together for two years - we met at jury duty (kid you not) and from the moment we met, had a crazy connection that has turned into the love of my life. My parents adore him. Think he is the best thing that has ever happened to me .. Yada Yada. So him being the right one in my parents eyes is not the issue with my mother. The night we got engaged (we randomly stopped for a photo op at the court house and as I was fumbling to take a selfie he got down on one knee) my mother was ecstatic - crying tears of joy.. Saying she has never been happier etc etc Let me tell you a bit about my mom ... She is the most anti social, attention hating person I have ever met. She refuses family photos. Won't sit in anything but a secluded booth at a restaurant. And unfortunately, she has some hoarding tendencies. And most importantly .. Finances. She has not been great when it comes to handling money responsibly. I could go on and on with the list. So here I am, two weeks later. FI and I are going to be paying for the wedding ourselves. We have an appointment this weekend to look at our first venue. I'm freakin EXCITED! We know what budget we have to work with, we are sticking within our means. We a financially responsible and stable. I tell my mom about the appointment, her answer .. "WHY?" Womp womp. She then goes on to say that we are insane for spending money on a wedding (I want a nice wedding!), we should have a backyard wedding (no no no no), we need to use our savings to buy a house and not a wedding (we are not ready for a house!) ... She is being SUPER unsupportive. This is supposed to be an exciting time for me ... I'm not going balls to the wall trying to get every detail of our 2016 wedding booked NOW but there are a few things I want to get a head start on, one of them being the venue. It really just totally murdered my vibe. Then lit it on fire and left it to burn. Am I too early in this process to think that maybe I just am on my own for this whole wedding deal? That she can't get over her own insecurities and be happy and supportive of my planning? I have a gut feeling the thought of the social interactions surrounding her daughter getting married is stressing her out. That along with her view on finances .. She just thinks it's absurd to spend money on a wedding. It's very upsetting to me. Have any of you ladies experienced this type of reaction? Ugh times a thousand.
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Re: My mom is KILLING my vibe!

  • VarunaTTVarunaTT
    Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    edited December 2014
    Am I too early in this process to think that maybe I just am on my own for this whole wedding deal? No, and quite frankly, you're better off just realizing it now.

    That she can't get over her own insecurities and be happy and supportive of my planning? I have a gut feeling the thought of the social interactions surrounding her daughter getting married is stressing her out. If she really does have the sort of tendencies you're talking about, those are mental illnesses and not she can't just "get over them".  So, again, go with answer to question #1.

    That along with her view on finances .. She just thinks it's absurd to spend money on a wedding. It's very upsetting to me. That doesn't have to change what you're doing.  Refer back to #1 and say, "I understand, Mom, this is what we're doing, but thanks". and/or stop bring the wedding up to her at all, except for when/where you need her.  And, knowing her insecurities, I'd really try and keep it to a minimum so she can also be comfortable.  She sounds like she's being as supportive as she can be.
    MesmrEwe
  • Number one - do your Due Diligence!!!  Before you look at venues or any other vendor - make a guest list!  Estimate how many will be likely to show!  Nothing worse than booking a hall to find out it's WAY too small or 6x times the size you actually need, or flat out the contract SUCKS (especially in the unlikely event you'd need to cancel for who knows what reason).  You're better off with the room to spare than a place too small.    AND, before looking at vendors - decide what type of ceremony you plan to have (church/minister/JOP/Judge who presided over the Jury trial) - because this can affect you're choice of date which you really need to have before looking at vendors as well.  It'll save you a lot of time and frustration especially on getting pricing quotes (lots of vendors aren't as cooperative without these details!). 

    As for answers to many of your questions ABSOLUTELY what @VarunaTT said!!!!  You're better to realize at this point in the planning process that you don't have the backup than after you've booked all your vendors thinking you do and discover you really don't have help for the DIY projects you want to do...  I had EVERYONE who I was counting on to help me completely flake out for helping with our wedding.  I'd have much rather known I'd have ZERO help early in the planning process than get to the day before the wedding and no one show up to help set up the reception site.  Had I known I really could have hired things out instead of working at our wedding. 

    As for your Mom - maybe your gift to Mom is a few sessions with a counselor of some type (hypnotherapist, NLP Practitioner, etc.) in your local area to help with some of the anxiety issues and keep things to a minimum for her in terms of how much she needs to interact with others.  Asking her what she feels comfortable with is a good starting point and stick to only those interactions for her. 

    Next, hire a wedding coordinator of some type to help you out.  Someone who can be excited about the details of the wedding besides you - this person will be worth their weight in gold!!!

    Finally - stick to a wedding that is within your means (I'm with your Mom on the spending aspect to an extent!!).  Going into outrageous debt isn't worth it whether you're planning to purchase a house in the next ten years or not, having a good financial nest egg is just smart!  OTOH, it is possible to have a very nice day on a tight budget if you're smart about your selections with vendors. 

    Have the day you want, OTOH, remember that it's not 100% about you and FI - but you spending time with your guests and their experience as well. 

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  • rcher912rcher912 Philadelphia
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    Sorry to hear about your mom. Sounds like she has some pretty real and serious issues that go far beyond your wedding. The event probably does make her uncomfortable, so my guess is the more you go into the details with her, the more headaches you're going to get. She can't help it. 

    I'd say lean on your FI. Hopefully he'll be supportive of the process, and as excited as you are. Hopefully there are some future bridesmaids out there in your life that you can lean on as well. But yeah, I wouldn't expect too much support from Mom.
    MesmrEwe
  • larrygagalarrygaga Czechoslovakia
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    edited January 2015
    It's your money to spend, but as your parent she feels the need to protect you and give you sound advice. Be nice and tell her politely that you are listening to her but you are going to do what you want with your money. 

    Now I'm going to annoy you and tell you that you can have a beautiful wedding for less, and you can have a nice wedding for less. There are tons of guides all over the knot and discussions on ways to save money. I side with your mom that you shouldn't spend every penny you have on a wedding, because there are so many more important things to spend money on. 

    You aren't on your own in this whole wedding deal, you have your FI. 

    Don't forget what a wedding is. It's a CELEBRATION. What you actually need to be married is a 20-50 dollar piece of paper and 20 minutes spend at your local JOP. Everything else is extra. Fun extra, but still extra. Don't forget what kind of commitment you are making. 
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  • cj3561cj3561 Connecticut
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    All the advice was solid. Thank you all. I think I just have to back off from her when it comes to the wedding. It does suck, to be honest ... But you are right, I need to turn to FI for the support and to share in the excitement with me ... And a wedding coordinator is a very good suggestion, too. I do need to realize, although I'm a little resentful at the moment, that these are truly issues beyond her control and I can't blame her for what she is uncomfortable with. As for the budget, we by no means are going over the top or spending our life savings ... We just aren't down for a backyard wedding. Plus, I can't think of anyone's backyard that would accommodate FI's giant Greek family ;D You guys are great.
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    This is why we can't have nice things.
    MesmrEweweddingcactus
  • aside: why do people often say "you should do a backyard wedding" when they are suggesting a low cost wedding? All I can think about is all the things you'd have to rent to have one! chairs, tables, a tent in case of bad weather.... oy. Lots and lots of money involved in most of the "backyard weddings" I've seen. (I know that there are exceptions to this... like an actually very small wedding that doesn't require renting things but man... most people have no idea what they're talking about when they suggest this!)
    MesmrEweweddingcactus
  • MesmrEweMesmrEwe
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
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    edited January 2015
    lilacck28 said:
    aside: why do people often say "you should do a backyard wedding" when they are suggesting a low cost wedding? All I can think about is all the things you'd have to rent to have one! chairs, tables, a tent in case of bad weather.... oy. Lots and lots of money involved in most of the "backyard weddings" I've seen. (I know that there are exceptions to this... like an actually very small wedding that doesn't require renting things but man... most people have no idea what they're talking about when they suggest this!)
    Oh AMEN!!!!!!!! (same for most farm locations)  There's nothing wrong with the local KC/Lion's/Eagles/VFW/Community Center/Church Hall/etc.!!!  Plus - more than that, I like(LOVE!) indoor plumbing and people often forget that the backyard/farm option most likely means porta potties(!!!!) - which are just one more thing that'd need to be rented... 
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    lilacck28
  • cj3561cj3561 Connecticut
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    lilacck28 said:

    aside: why do people often say "you should do a backyard wedding" when they are suggesting a low cost wedding? All I can think about is all the things you'd have to rent to have one! chairs, tables, a tent in case of bad weather.... oy. Lots and lots of money involved in most of the "backyard weddings" I've seen. (I know that there are exceptions to this... like an actually very small wedding that doesn't require renting things but man... most people have no idea what they're talking about when they suggest this!)

    Yes .. Yes!!! Every venue that is more of an "open space" concept from barns to gardens to warehouses that I have looked at have after all the necessary rentals/setup/catering actually added up to equal if not more of the perceived more "expensive" venues ... Plus it saves you an insane amount of stress and coordination efforts.
    Plus a summer wedding with no a/c ... Nooo thanks! ;)
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    This is why we can't have nice things.
    MesmrEwe
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