Pre-wedding Parties

FFIL wants a big rehearsal dinner...

I really would love to just relax with our wedding party...FH is feeling like he wants something fun, but doesn't want anything crazy. We are already at 32 with our wedding party, SOs and other essential people. 

FFIL wants a 40-50 with a string quartet (!!!) He is picturing anybody and everybody comign in from out of town. The thing is he is counting "out of town" as a 2-3 hour drive. That's basically everybody at our reception and I do not want a reception before the reception.

Ugh...We definitely have time to figure this out, but FFIL has the tendancy to tell people to "Come on by". This is totally freaking me out.

Re: FFIL wants a big rehearsal dinner...

  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Plan and host it yourself and only give your FFIL the information he needs to know about it-when he needs it and not a second before.
    southernbelle0915
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    I'm not much help.   We invited our entire lists (all OOT) to an open house the night before. That was over 100 people.  It was a ver casual event.   I loved spending the extra time with our guests.    I would do it again in a heart beat.

    If your FFIL is paying then they get to decide the guest list.    Honestly I do not know what the big deal is between 32 people and 40-50.    But if you do not want a big RD, then decline his offer for paying and hosting and do it yourself.






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • My fear is that he says 40-50 but that it will easily turn into literally everybody driving in from anywhere. They are being very gracious in hosting, but are basically telling us that it is their party, so they can bring whoever they want. 

    I know that is the viewpoint I have seen on TK before, but if I was hosting an anniversary party for them (for instance), the guest list would consist of their friends, not all my best girlfriends. Why is this any different?


  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    shlasher said:

    My fear is that he says 40-50 but that it will easily turn into literally everybody driving in from anywhere. They are being very gracious in hosting, but are basically telling us that it is their party, so they can bring whoever they want. 


    I know that is the viewpoint I have seen on TK before, but if I was hosting an anniversary party for them (for instance), the guest list would consist of their friends, not all my best girlfriends. Why is this any different?


    Because ultimately, the guest list and all other aspects of a party are up to the hosts, and despite your stated respect for the honorees, unfortunately the real world allows the hosts to use parties they are ostensibly throwing for other people as ego strokes for themselves without regard for what the honorees want. The only realistic way for the honorees to avoid being used is to host their own parties.
  • Thanks all, I think this will all turn out okay. It looks like FMIL & FH are doing some FFIL wrangling. What was really scarring me is that that FFIL basically doesn't want a guest list, and is famous for last-minute word-of mouth invitations, and while I know they are hosting, I really don't want 50 people to turn into 70-100 (we also have a wedding guest who is a friend of theirs and known to invite 20+ of her friends to other people's parties). Glad we are staring this process early, and hopefully they will book a caterer who will also put the smack-down on word-of mouth invites.

  • shlasher said:
    Thanks all, I think this will all turn out okay. It looks like FMIL & FH are doing some FFIL wrangling. What was really scarring me is that that FFIL basically doesn't want a guest list, and is famous for last-minute word-of mouth invitations, and while I know they are hosting, I really don't want 50 people to turn into 70-100 (we also have a wedding guest who is a friend of theirs and known to invite 20+ of her friends to other people's parties). Glad we are staring this process early, and hopefully they will book a caterer who will also put the smack-down on word-of mouth invites.

    It doesn't sound like he has much experience planning large, formal events. Venues have capacity restrictions, they need head counts, they need the right amount of tables and chairs...

    I agree it's a big red flag that sounds like a disaster waiting to happen. If he's a word of mouth kind of person, I wonder if he would invite people who aren't invited to the actual wedding....because PARTY! 

    Personally, I'd plan/host it yourselves. @Jen4948's first post is probably exactly how I'd handle it.
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  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    shlasher said:
    My fear is that he says 40-50 but that it will easily turn into literally everybody driving in from anywhere. They are being very gracious in hosting, but are basically telling us that it is their party, so they can bring whoever they want. 

    I know that is the viewpoint I have seen on TK before, but if I was hosting an anniversary party for them (for instance), the guest list would consist of their friends, not all my best girlfriends. Why is this any different?



    The difference is that that is how you would choose to do things. FFIL doesn't have to do it that way. I too do not ever understand why someone would throw a party ostensibly in honor of someone else but also not give a shit what that person would want.

    H and I told MIL we wanted to keep the RD to essential people; she wanted to show off because parties are her thing and she has three sons and no one's let her host a wedding. So she invited all the aunts and uncles that she wanted to show off for. That is her prerogative, and by accepting her hosting we accepted that, even if it pissed me off.

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