Wedding Etiquette Forum

Courthouse wedding Etiquette

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Re: Courthouse wedding Etiquette

  • LtPowers said:
    Look, here's a quotation from Miss Manners: "If you do not feel sufficiently pleased by someone's marriage to be moved to try to contribute to that person's happiness, you don't belong at the wedding."

    Please note that it says nothing about being unable to afford a present, which is obviously a special case. If Grandma is so utterly destitute that any conceivable wedding present is a burden, surely her family must be aware of this and would want her at the wedding regardless. They know Grandma would give a gift if she could. Grandma meets the criterion.

    But the advice isn't aimed at destitute Grandmas; it's aimed at a broader audience that attends weddings but doesn't always feel like spending money on a gift.


    And sometimes Miss Manners is wrong, or doesn't represent the full breadth of possibilities. Obviously anyone with the opinion of "I hate that bitch, I am NOT getting her a gift" should probably decline the wedding, but that's a pretty damn small subset of people. This particular piece of advice should not be trotted out as the be-all end-all standard on wedding gifting.
    Right. And I really think that Miss Manners' notion -- that if you have no desire to give a gift you may not be close enough to the couple to be attending their wedding -- is mostly out of context. 

    For example, click here for a more fully formed advice column from Miss Manners that specifically says that a wedding invitation is not an invoice. She does add, as a caveat, that if you care about a couple, you likely would want to indicate symbolically about the couple by giving them a gift. And, as lolo mentioned, yes, decline an invite if you dislike or feel ambivalent about a couple or a person, but do not use the inverse, ie, someone didn't give you a wedding gift, to conclude that the person didn't care about you enough to give a gift. You never know why someone didn't give you a gift, and you never need to know, it's none of your business. 

    Would I personally attend a wedding without bringing a gift? It's never yet happened in my adult life, I always give gifts, even when I am invited and cannot attend (and, as other posters have said, sometimes I send gifts even when not invited). But that doesn't mean I have an obligation to give, and honestly, a feeling of obligation in gift giving is uncomfortable and yucky. 
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  • climbingsingleclimbingsingle NYC 'burbs member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    LtPowers said:
    Look, here's a quotation from Miss Manners: "If you do not feel sufficiently pleased by someone's marriage to be moved to try to contribute to that person's happiness, you don't belong at the wedding."

    Please note that it says nothing about being unable to afford a present, which is obviously a special case. If Grandma is so utterly destitute that any conceivable wedding present is a burden, surely her family must be aware of this and would want her at the wedding regardless. They know Grandma would give a gift if she could. Grandma meets the criterion.

    But the advice isn't aimed at destitute Grandmas; it's aimed at a broader audience that attends weddings but doesn't always feel like spending money on a gift.


    I think you're taking this out of context and reading it incorrectly. Read the bolded again. 
    huskypuppy14
  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Well this was an interesting 2.5 pages. 

    I'll just say this. I like to be generous when I can; for example, I happily send gifts to coworkers I really like even when I know full well I'm not invited to their weddings. I love a good office baby shower. 

    BUT, nothing rubs me more wrong than telling me what to buy/send and/or how to send my gift.  Another poster said it takes the fun out of things, and I agree. I have snarked hard on people who have put on their wedding websites crap like, "Here's our registry and maybe you want to go in with friends on the more expensive stuff!" 

    And yes, you lose friends by pulling shit like this. Maybe not on the first offense, but this woman who was routinely gift grabby for her life events is definitely no longer my friend. Too many tacky straws on the camel's back. 

    For the OP's situation, to have a courthouse wedding and send everyone links to their honeyfund? Hell no, to this situation. A card with well-wishes will more than suffice. 
    ________________________________


    novella1186
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    LtPowers said:
    Look, here's a quotation from Miss Manners: "If you do not feel sufficiently pleased by someone's marriage to be moved to try to contribute to that person's happiness, you don't belong at the wedding."

    Please note that it says nothing about being unable to afford a present, which is obviously a special case. If Grandma is so utterly destitute that any conceivable wedding present is a burden, surely her family must be aware of this and would want her at the wedding regardless. They know Grandma would give a gift if she could. Grandma meets the criterion.

    But the advice isn't aimed at destitute Grandmas; it's aimed at a broader audience that attends weddings but doesn't always feel like spending money on a gift.


    I think you're taking this out of context and reading it incorrectly. Read the bolded again. 
    Yes, I see nothing about gifts in that quote. You can contribute to people's happiness without giving them presents. 
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    arrippa
  • lightningsnowlightningsnow New Hampshire member
    Fourth Anniversary 250 Love Its 100 Comments First Answer
    To the OP: I wouldn't worry about sending an actual gift. Perhaps a card would be good enough. If you demand that I help pay for your honeymoon, you are just getting a card. That's it.

    On the topic of giving gifts/cards at weddings: I have only given a wedding gift that wasn't tied to a registry for a bridal shower once and it was very recently for BF's best friend. Even though I have been working full time since I was 19 and have attended several weddings in that time frame, I was making minimum wage in retail and couldn't afford much. Plusalso, I tend to forget about cards when it comes to weddings as it just isn't in the forefront of my mind. I'm usually worrying more about getting there on time and not falling in my shoes. I certainly hope that the friends and family whose weddings I have attended didn't think I didn't care about them because I didn't get a gift or a card.
    Formerly known as bubbles053009





  • LtPowersLtPowers Upstate New York member
    Knottie Warrior 100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    LtPowers said:
    Look, here's a quotation from Miss Manners: "If you do not feel sufficiently pleased by someone's marriage to be moved to try to contribute to that person's happiness, you don't belong at the wedding."

    Please note that it says nothing about being unable to afford a present, which is obviously a special case. If Grandma is so utterly destitute that any conceivable wedding present is a burden, surely her family must be aware of this and would want her at the wedding regardless. They know Grandma would give a gift if she could. Grandma meets the criterion.

    But the advice isn't aimed at destitute Grandmas; it's aimed at a broader audience that attends weddings but doesn't always feel like spending money on a gift.


    I think you're taking this out of context and reading it incorrectly. Read the bolded again. 
    It is out of context, but I assure you the quotation does pertain to gifts, as the whole context makes clear. I apologize for not typing the whole thing; I can't just cut and paste in this instance. But the question Miss Manners was answering in this case directly asked if it was okay to attend a wedding without also giving a gift.

    I suspect Miss Manners phrased the response the way she did because there are plenty of valuable, cherished gifts that don't require the gifter to drain their bank account. Gifts may be purchased, crafted, heirloom, rescued, or they may even take the form of a letter filled with advice.

    She also says, though, that no social form "translates as 'Present due'". So she agrees that a present is not required; just that if you do not feel moved enough to want to get the couple a present, you probably should not accept the invitation to witness their wedding.

    How some posters here got from that to "Grandma shouldn't be allowed to come if she can't afford a gift" is beyond me. Of course Grandma is moved enough to want to get a gift, even if she can't swing a purchase at this time. She's in the clear.


  • edited June 2015
  • LtPowersLtPowers Upstate New York member
    Knottie Warrior 100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    OMG.
    "At this time" still insinuates that grandma's now got an IOU for a gift over her head.

    Only if you insist on reading everything I type in the most negative light possible.


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