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Etiquette

Wedding invitations: non-transferable, right?!?!

When my fiance and I were planning our wedding, my mother gave us a lengthy list of people she wanted to invite to the wedding, including the names of almost everyone in her office.  Her coworkers are not people that she socializes with outside of work.  My fiance and I were dismayed by the list because it meant cutting friends from our list, but because my parents had given us a sizeable cash gift as a wedding present in lieu of paying for the wedding, and we put that gift toward hosting our wedding ourselves, we felt obligated to go along with it.
Now I've received RSVP cards from two of these coworkers.  One, who was invited by herself because she is not married or in a relationship, wrote in "and guest" on the response line.  She was not invited with a guest.  The other, who was invited by name along with her husband, has decided to bring someone other than her husband and wrote this person's name on the response card next to her own.  I've asked my mother to tell these people that they cannot bring uninvited guests or substitute guests, but she won't do it because she thinks the conversations will be awkward.  I'm putting my foot down on this because we're already aggravated to be inviting people who are strangers to us to our wedding at the expense of inviting our friends, and I think allowing these people to add their own guests is ludicrous.  Am I wrong?  I can't contact these people any other way than by mail, because the only contact info I have for them is the mailing addresses my mother gave me.  My mother doesn't have their phone numbers or email addresses, which is an indication of how close she is to these people.  Besides, I think since she wanted them invited, she should explain that wedding invites are non-transferable.  What do I do?

Re: Wedding invitations: non-transferable, right?!?!

  • Co-Worker #1: "Mom, Betty from your office RSVP'd and included a guest that was not originally invited. Unless you want to pay for an extra person, you need to let her know that her guest will not have a seat at the wedding."

    Co-Worker #2: "Mom, it was our understanding that Rose would be attending with her husband, but she has decided to bring someone else in lieu of her husband. Please tell her that the invitation was just for her and her husband." --it was rude of the co-worker to invite somebody who was not addressed on the invitation.

    Unfortunately, since your parents are paying for a sizable portion of your wedding (I'm guessing it covers the reception), then they do have the ultimate say in the guest list. Depending on how close you are with your mother, you may want to sit down and have a conversation with her regarding your feelings and discomfort surrounding the guest list. She may still refuse to budge. If that's the case, and you still are unhappy, then politely decline your parents' money, and have you and your FI pay for the wedding yourselves.


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  • When my fiance and I were planning our wedding, my mother gave us a lengthy list of people she wanted to invite to the wedding, including the names of almost everyone in her office.  Her coworkers are not people that she socializes with outside of work.  My fiance and I were dismayed by the list because it meant cutting friends from our list, but because my parents had given us a sizeable cash gift as a wedding present in lieu of paying for the wedding, and we put that gift toward hosting our wedding ourselves, we felt obligated to go along with it.
    Now I've received RSVP cards from two of these coworkers.  One, who was invited by herself because she is not married or in a relationship, wrote in "and guest" on the response line.  She was not invited with a guest.  The other, who was invited by name along with her husband, has decided to bring someone other than her husband and wrote this person's name on the response card next to her own.  I've asked my mother to tell these people that they cannot bring uninvited guests or substitute guests, but she won't do it because she thinks the conversations will be awkward.  I'm putting my foot down on this because we're already aggravated to be inviting people who are strangers to us to our wedding at the expense of inviting our friends, and I think allowing these people to add their own guests is ludicrous.  Am I wrong?  I can't contact these people any other way than by mail, because the only contact info I have for them is the mailing addresses my mother gave me.  My mother doesn't have their phone numbers or email addresses, which is an indication of how close she is to these people.  Besides, I think since she wanted them invited, she should explain that wedding invites are non-transferable.  What do I do?

    JIC
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  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers

    Co-Worker #1: "Mom, Betty from your office RSVP'd and included a guest that was not originally invited. Unless you want to pay for an extra person, you need to let her know that her guest will not have a seat at the wedding."


    Co-Worker #2: "Mom, it was our understanding that Rose would be attending with her husband, but she has decided to bring someone else in lieu of her husband. Please tell her that the invitation was just for her and her husband." --it was rude of the co-worker to invite somebody who was not addressed on the invitation.

    Unfortunately, since your parents are paying for a sizable portion of your wedding (I'm guessing it covers the reception), then they do have the ultimate say in the guest list. Depending on how close you are with your mother, you may want to sit down and have a conversation with her regarding your feelings and discomfort surrounding the guest list. She may still refuse to budge. If that's the case, and you still are unhappy, then politely decline your parents' money, and have you and your FI pay for the wedding yourselves.


    All of this. The only way to assert control over the guest list is to take her money out of the situation.

    But if she won't tell these people that they can't bring plus ones or substitute guests, can you go to her office, and you have to invite the original guests, can you go in person to her office, meet these people, and tell them in person that they can't bring uninvited guests? Or, can you get contact information for them, like their work phone numbers or email addresses, from someone at the office?
    japrincess24
  • huskypuppy14huskypuppy14 Boston Suburbs member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    Your parents gave you a wedding gift of cash. You happened to use that money to pay for your wedding. You did not have to invite her co workers, because she is not technically paying for the wedding. 

    Also, are you sure guest #1 doesn't have a SO? That could be why they put a guest, but she should have added the person's name. 

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    poodledoodleooomadamerwin
  • Dreamergirl8812Dreamergirl8812 your closet member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its Second Anniversary First Answer
    Since you invited them it is your job to call them and clarify who the invitation is meant for.



    Anniversary
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    southernbelle0915
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    Since you invited them it is your job to call them and clarify who the invitation is meant for.

    This. If the invitation came from you and returned to you, it is not your mother's job to clarify who will be hosted since she is not hosting. It is yours.

    Anniversary

    saric83Maggie0829
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    banana468mrsdee15ashley8918southernbelle0915
  • look them up in the phone book or i should say whitepages.com find there facebook and message them  try to find a contact number for them to speak to them.
  • Since you invited them it is your job to call them and clarify who the invitation is meant for.

    This. If the invitation came from you and returned to you, it is not your mother's job to clarify who will be hosted since she is not hosting. It is yours.
    This is very true--I didn't read carefully enough to see that you were the one who originally received the RSVPs. Get the guests' contact info from your mother and call them directly. 
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  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers

    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    Since the OP doesn't have a professional relationship with these people, who gives a fuck if it's "unprofessional" ? If she had to fire a detective to track these people down, the detective might do exactly the same thing. And if it affects her mother's relationships with them, that's something her mother should have thought of before adding all these names to her guest list.
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    banana468 said:

    Jen4948 said:

    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    Since the OP doesn't have a professional relationship with these people, who gives a fuck if it's "unprofessional" ? If she had to fire a detective to track these people down, the detective might do exactly the same thing. And if it affects her mother's relationships with them, that's something her mother should have thought of before adding all these names to her guest list.
    Really?   We're talking about wedding guests here - not deadbeat parents.     This is also assuming you can even go to the workplace.   Assuming the OP did take this craptacular advice, it assumes that outsiders are allowed in.   Not all employers work this way.   I can't just show up to DH's job.   I'm not allowed in the building.   Plenty of other places now have heightened security so you can't just walk in the door and say, "Um helloo!   I need to talk to Jane Smith because she absolutely cannot bring Josie Prescott as her date to my WEDDING!   Now please tell me where she is so I can tell her that my mom was wrong." 
    Many people can't get the information from phone books. That's also craptacular advice.

    If it's not possible for the OP to do it, then it isn't. Some workplaces might make it possible. Not all if them are like your husband's. That's why I ASKED if it was possible. I didn't just tell her to do it.

    You can calm down now.
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited April 2015
    Jen4948 said:

    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    Since the OP doesn't have a professional relationship with these people, who gives a fuck if it's "unprofessional" ? If she had to fire a detective to track these people down, the detective might do exactly the same thing. And if it affects her mother's relationships with them, that's something her mother should have thought of before adding all these names to her guest list.
    Maybe you're OK with behaving like that, but IMO it's pretty tacky. If someone showed up at my job to discuss a wedding invitation, I can tell you that I would be getting strange looks from my boss. I don't ever want to be discussing personal things at my job. And even though these are her mother's co-workers, it's still personal and NOT work related. 

    And like Banana said, some places of business don't just let random people show up. I worked at an engineering firm that was like that. You couldn't have strangers showing up without appointments. 

    ashley8918
  • Jen4948 said:

    banana468 said:

    Jen4948 said:

    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    Since the OP doesn't have a professional relationship with these people, who gives a fuck if it's "unprofessional" ? If she had to fire a detective to track these people down, the detective might do exactly the same thing. And if it affects her mother's relationships with them, that's something her mother should have thought of before adding all these names to her guest list.
    Really?   We're talking about wedding guests here - not deadbeat parents.     This is also assuming you can even go to the workplace.   Assuming the OP did take this craptacular advice, it assumes that outsiders are allowed in.   Not all employers work this way.   I can't just show up to DH's job.   I'm not allowed in the building.   Plenty of other places now have heightened security so you can't just walk in the door and say, "Um helloo!   I need to talk to Jane Smith because she absolutely cannot bring Josie Prescott as her date to my WEDDING!   Now please tell me where she is so I can tell her that my mom was wrong." 
    Many people can't get the information from phone books. That's also craptacular advice.

    If it's not possible for the OP to do it, then it isn't. Some workplaces might make it possible. Not all if them are like your husband's. That's why I ASKED if it was possible. I didn't just tell her to do it.

    You can calm down now.
    No need to insinuate anything about my emotional level.   My point is that if the OP can't get in touch with these people there are other ways to handle it other than to take time out of her day (and leave her own employer if she has a job) and show up to do this.   It borders on crazypants to do such a thing and would also make her mother look unprofessional.   While I'd have a talking-to with my mother about this, I would not elevate a wedding situation into the department of "warrants making my family face disciplinary action at her employer."

    How about saying, "Mom, if you can't handle this then I'm going to tell the venue to only let in those I invited and you'll be stuck explaining that at the door on my wedding day,"?    It gets the point across that Mom needs to do something without resorting to making the bride look like she's 3 cards short of a full deck. 
    ashley8918MyNameIsNot[Deleted User]huskypuppy14
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
    10000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    banana468 said:

    banana468 said:

    Jen4948 said:

    I agree that you should contact these people directly. However I have to completely disagree with Jen's advice up there. Do not go to their office to have this conversation. And I wouldn't call them at work either. That is extremely unprofessional.

    Since the OP doesn't have a professional relationship with these people, who gives a fuck if it's "unprofessional" ? If she had to fire a detective to track these people down, the detective might do exactly the same thing. And if it affects her mother's relationships with them, that's something her mother should have thought of before adding all these names to her guest list.
    Really?   We're talking about wedding guests here - not deadbeat parents.     This is also assuming you can even go to the workplace.   Assuming the OP did take this craptacular advice, it assumes that outsiders are allowed in.   Not all employers work this way.   I can't just show up to DH's job.   I'm not allowed in the building.   Plenty of other places now have heightened security so you can't just walk in the door and say, "Um helloo!   I need to talk to Jane Smith because she absolutely cannot bring Josie Prescott as her date to my WEDDING!   Now please tell me where she is so I can tell her that my mom was wrong." 
    Many people can't get the information from phone books. That's also craptacular advice.

    If it's not possible for the OP to do it, then it isn't. Some workplaces might make it possible. Not all if them are like your husband's. That's why I ASKED if it was possible. I didn't just tell her to do it.

    You can calm down now.
    No need to insinuate anything about my emotional level.   My point is that if the OP can't get in touch with these people there are other ways to handle it other than to take time out of her day (and leave her own employer if she has a job) and show up to do this.   It borders on crazypants to do such a thing and would also make her mother look unprofessional.   While I'd have a talking-to with my mother about this, I would not elevate a wedding situation into the department of "warrants making my family face disciplinary action at her employer."

    How about saying, "Mom, if you can't handle this then I'm going to tell the venue to only let in those I invited and you'll be stuck explaining that at the door on my wedding day,"?    It gets the point across that Mom needs to do something without resorting to making the bride look like she's 3 cards short of a full deck. 


    Yes to the bolded. That is crazypants behavior. 

  • Take this as a lesson, lurkers.  When you get random names from your parents to add to your guest list, be sure to get phone numbers as well as addresses!  Not only do you need the phone number in a situation like this, but you'll also need them if half of mom's co-workers never RSVP.  Someone needs to call them to find out if they're coming or not.  You need to be prepared to make these calls in case your mom can't be counted on to make them for her friends.
  • Thanks for the advice, everyone.  I think the person who suggested that I go to my mother's office and speak to the coworkers myself was correct in suggesting that I deal with it myself as the person to whom the RSVP cards are addressed, and she simply didn't think about what it would be like if I showed up at the office.  No need to worry, I would never presume that anyone's workplace is a good location for this discussion.  If it were my coworker, I would call them at home and not discuss it at the office, and I would of course give my mother the same courtesy. 
    Turns out, once the second coworker gave herself a +1, my mom was equally if not more frustrated with her coworkers and resolved to handle it herself (thanks, Mom!).  Now, the problem is that my FFIL has several guests who are doing the same thing, and my fiance is reluctant to confront either him or his guests.  It's not fair to hold my mom's guests to a different standard than his father's, but that's where we're at.  Fiance even suggested that perhaps I was in the wrong in thinking that guests giving themselves +1's is a common and acceptable practice.  Maybe I am wrong in this. Sigh.
  • You're not wrong.   Your FI just needs to grow up a bit. 
    anjemon[Deleted User]
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