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Invites and Paper

Complicated invite wording

Ok, looking for etiquette advice on how to address invites for the following:
My FI and I are the only ones paying for the wedding but our mothers cried after we told them (they asked...) they wouldn't be included in the invite text. Before anyone gets too excited or says "It's your wedding and they're not paying for it, do what you want!"- I want to not hear about this for the rest of our lives so I made the compromise to include them. Then, my father (divorced from my mom and neither remarried) died suddenly and unexpectedly in November so I would like some way to include him on the invite as well. 
Maybe I'm just getting myself stressed out but it seems like the wording is getting very complicated. Any suggestions? 

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Re: Complicated invite wording

  • First of all, I'm very sorry to hear about your Dad. Unfortunately, wedding invitations are not family trees so they should only be mentioning who is hosting. There's a sticky post at the top of this board with great wording recommendations. 
    --

    OurWildKingdomernursej[Deleted User]
  • OurWildKingdomOurWildKingdom in the 216 member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Third Anniversary 5 Answers
    edited May 2016
    Or post your current wording and we'll give you feedback. @CMGragain is particularly knowledgeable about invitation wording.

    I too am sorry about your Dad. 
  • LtPowersLtPowers Upstate New York member
    Knottie Warrior 100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    CMGragain said:

    There is absolutely NO way to include any deceased person on the invitation.  None. 
    If I may, what about the form where the groom's name is followed by "son of Mr. and Mrs. James Dear"?

    In that form, the decedent is not awkwardly listed as issuing the invitation, so it seems like his or her inclusion would not abrogate etiquette. But perhaps there's some other rule that prohibits it?
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited May 2016
    LtPowers said:
    CMGragain said:

    There is absolutely NO way to include any deceased person on the invitation.  None. 
    If I may, what about the form where the groom's name is followed by "son of Mr. and Mrs. James Dear"?

    In that form, the decedent is not awkwardly listed as issuing the invitation, so it seems like his or her inclusion would not abrogate etiquette. But perhaps there's some other rule that prohibits it?
    If you want to go by strict etiquette rules regarding wedding invitations, take CMGra's advice. I'm certain she doesn't agree with my opinion:

    I have seen many invitations with 'the son of .......' line. It's done as a sign of respect for the non-hosting parents and for the sake of posterity. Those are pretty good reasons in my opinion. @LtPowers, it would be awkward to separate the couples names with the names of one set of parents. Do you have suggestions for wording? Would anyone else like to give it a shot?

                       
  • TyvmTyvm member
    250 Love Its 100 Comments First Answer Name Dropper
    edited May 2016
    @LtPowers I think the "son of Mr. and Mrs. James Dear" formulation is often contradicted by the "invitations are not a family tree" rule. But what do I know!


    k thnx bye

  • There is no good reason to list "the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Smith" on the invitations.  It has no purpose.  If one of the persons is deceased, it is high improper, because you must include "the late John Smith".  The whole idea implies that the guest does not know who the bride and groom are without listing their parents.
    Is it the end of the world?  No.  Is it correct?  No.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    SP29
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited May 2016
    CMGragain said:
    There is no good reason to list "the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Smith" on the invitations.  It has no purpose.  If one of the persons is deceased, it is high improper, because you must include "the late John Smith".  The whole idea implies that the guest does not know who the bride and groom are without listing their parents.
    Is it the end of the world?  No.  Is it correct?  No.
    I feel the same way about putting the year on the invitation. There's no purpose for that, is there? Wouldn't everyone assume that the wedding is this year and not two thousand twenty? But people want to include the year for posterity. The invitation gets tucked into the wedding album or family bible for future generations. I can see why they would want to have both parents listed on that memento. 

    I agree that deceased parents shouldn't be listed as hosts. That would be just plain weird. The wedding program is a nice place to remember the deceased parent.
     
                       
    Knottie1452098987
  • CMGragainCMGragain member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    edited May 2016
    I usually list the year as optional when asked.  There is no reason to include it, but there is also no reason to not include it.  There are reasons to not include the parents who are not hosting on an invitation.  It is awkward, it is inappropriate, and it serves no purpose.  It is especially awkward if both the bride's parents and the groom's parents are not hosting, but insist on being listed on the invitation.

    "...but, I'm the bride's MOTHER!  She grew in my uterus!  I should get credit on the invitation for that!"

    See how silly this is?
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    kittykyatwink0erinSP29
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    LtPowers said:
    CMGragain said:

    There is absolutely NO way to include any deceased person on the invitation.  None. 
    If I may, what about the form where the groom's name is followed by "son of Mr. and Mrs. James Dear"?

    In that form, the decedent is not awkwardly listed as issuing the invitation, so it seems like his or her inclusion would not abrogate etiquette. But perhaps there's some other rule that prohibits it?
    If you want to go by strict etiquette rules regarding wedding invitations, take CMGra's advice. I'm certain she doesn't agree with my opinion:

    I have seen many invitations with 'the son of .......' line. It's done as a sign of respect for the non-hosting parents and for the sake of posterity. Those are pretty good reasons in my opinion. @LtPowers, it would be awkward to separate the couples names with the names of one set of parents. Do you have suggestions for wording? Would anyone else like to give it a shot?

    We did this.  We hosted DD's wedding 100%.  We added the line for the exact reasons you state.  No one asked us to do it. 
    MairePoppyKnottie1452098987
  • LtPowersLtPowers Upstate New York member
    Knottie Warrior 100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    CMGragain said:
    There is no good reason to list "the son of Mr. and Mrs. John Smith" on the invitations.  It has no purpose.  If one of the persons is deceased, it is high improper, because you must include "the late John Smith".  The whole idea implies that the guest does not know who the bride and groom are without listing their parents.
    Is it the end of the world?  No.  Is it correct?  No.
    I tend to agree, but Miss Manners grudgingly permits it if it is very important to the groom's parents. I guess I'd have to ask her about a deceased parent in that situation.

    As an aside, as alternatives to that wording, Miss Manners prefers "European-style" invitations, where the groom's parents invite the groom's side and the bride's parents invite the bride's side... or for the groom's parents to include their card in invitations to their side.


  • LtPowersLtPowers Upstate New York member
    Knottie Warrior 100 Love Its 100 Comments Name Dropper
    If you want to go by strict etiquette rules regarding wedding invitations, take CMGra's advice. I'm certain she doesn't agree with my opinion:

    I have seen many invitations with 'the son of .......' line. It's done as a sign of respect for the non-hosting parents and for the sake of posterity. Those are pretty good reasons in my opinion. @LtPowers, it would be awkward to separate the couples names with the names of one set of parents. Do you have suggestions for wording? Would anyone else like to give it a shot?

    I'm not sure there's any way to do it gracefully unless the bride's parents are hosting. The only thing that should come between the couple's names is the bride's military or diplomatic rank (if applicable) and the word "and".

    The best I can do is this:

    The pleasure of your company
    is requested at the marriage of
    Emily Ann Darling
    and
    James Allan Dear, Junior,
    children of
    Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Darling
    and
    Mr. and Mrs. James Dear

    Likely not Miss-Manners approved, but I think (hope) it's free of any egregious violations. Works best if the children share their parents' surnames.
    OurWildKingdomMairePoppysparklepants41
  • MairePoppyMairePoppy Connecticut mod
    Moderator Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its
    edited May 2016
    LtPowers said:
    If you want to go by strict etiquette rules regarding wedding invitations, take CMGra's advice. I'm certain she doesn't agree with my opinion:

    I have seen many invitations with 'the son of .......' line. It's done as a sign of respect for the non-hosting parents and for the sake of posterity. Those are pretty good reasons in my opinion. @LtPowers, it would be awkward to separate the couples names with the names of one set of parents. Do you have suggestions for wording? Would anyone else like to give it a shot?

    I'm not sure there's any way to do it gracefully unless the bride's parents are hosting. The only thing that should come between the couple's names is the bride's military or diplomatic rank (if applicable) and the word "and".

    The best I can do is this:

    The pleasure of your company
    is requested at the marriage of
    Emily Ann Darling
    and
    James Allan Dear, Junior,
    children of
    Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Darling
    and
    Mr. and Mrs. James Dear

    Likely not Miss-Manners approved, but I think (hope) it's free of any egregious violations. Works best if the children share their parents' surnames.
    Thank you. It's not traditional, it looks a little busy, but it should satisfy the parents. If the hosting bride and groom want their parents listed on the invitations, there's no harm in it.

    @CMGragain , I'm not saying the mothers should demand to be listed as hosts, unless they are assisting with hosting duties. I was referring to the line that's often added after the groom's name- 'the son of POG's names.' I didn't do it, but I don't think it's silly. 
                       
    OurWildKingdomKnottie1452098987
  • It simply has no purpose, and it is insulting to the groom to imply that his parents must be listed in order to identify him.   It isn't the end of the world.  It's just not appropriate.  It does NOT honor the parents.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited May 2016
    CMGragain said:
    It simply has no purpose, and it is insulting to the groom to imply that his parents must be listed in order to identify him.   It isn't the end of the world.  It's just not appropriate.  It does NOT honor the parents.
    What's insulting is your insistence that it has no purpose.  It's not up to you to decide what purpose, if any, other people might have in listing people on invitations, or whether listing the groom as the "son of" his parents insults the groom, who might be the one asking for it in the first place. If so, leaving it out would be "insulting" the groom - not including it.

    If the groom has a common name, it might even be necessary to identify him as the son of his parents to make clear that John Smith, the son of James and Mary Smith, as opposed to John Smith, the son of Michael and Lucy Smith, is the one marrying the bride.

    And if it "serves no purpose," it also does no harm.

    The world is not going to come to a fucking end if the groom is listed as the son of non-hosting parents, or for that matter, if other "non-traditional" wording is used on invitations, as long as the couple and hosts are identified by name and the occasion and logistical details are clear. And that's all "correctness," "politeness" and "propriety" calls for.

    Even the editors of Crain's don't penalize anyone for being "non-traditional." "Traditional" doesn't equal "correct," "polite" or "appropriate."

    And if you have to put so much of your time and energy into defending something that ultimately doesn't matter, maybe it's not worth it and you're wasting time and energy that could be put to better use.
    Knottie1452098987
  • Ha.ha!  Oh, my pearls!
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    SP29
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited May 2016
    @CMGragain, the problem is not that you promote traditional etiquette, it is that you defend it too stidently and make unnecessary, and sometimes inaccurate, statements about what is "insulting" when it doesn't fit the actual situation or otherwise makes no difference.
    MairePoppyKnottie1452098987
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Seventh Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Strident. Vous.
    Knottie1452098987
  • drglitterdrglitter member
    500 Love Its 100 Comments Second Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited May 2016
    CMGragain said:
    Jen, you know that I only post traditional etiquette.  I don't make any of this up.  It all comes from other sources.  Somebody needs to represent the traditional, established etiquette.
    If a bride want to use modern wording, that is fine as long as it does the job. 
    If a bride wants to go against established etiquette wording and list non-hosting people, that is her choice.  I have yet to learn of a good reason to do this, though.
    However, she should know what the traditional wording IS, and why variations may not be acceptable.  It is not an honor to be listed on an invitation.  Repeat this to yourself, please.  The invitation is a note from the hosts to the guests, stating who, what, when and where.
    Many people have opinions about wording.  I have seen some invitations that are very confusing.  If everybody wants to throw in their two cents, this is going to confuse brides who are looking for the correct answer about wording their invitation.
    The OP on this thread doesn't mind odd wording.  This is her choice.  As I have often said, it is not the end of the world.  The correct, traditional wording has been explained to her, and she has chosen not to follow it.  Fine.  Her choice.
    Do not tell me to stop recommending standard traditional wording.  It has worked beautifully for more than 100 years, and it still works best, IMHO.  I will continue to advise brides of the correct traditional wording.  If they want to do something different, that is their choice, but they might want to be prepared for criticism.
    When my daughter was wording her invitations, she asked her FMIL about putting her name on them.  FMIL was raised in the South, and she was surprised at the question.  "Goodness, NO!  Why would I want to be on an invitation when I am not the hostess?  That would be embarrassing."" 
    To the first bolded...why are we assuming the bride is doing the invitation wording?

    To the second...if the people listed on the invitation feel honored by the presence of their names there, then it IS an honor to be listed. I don't have a horse in this race. Nobody's names but mine and FH's are on our invitations. But to insist that someone can't possible feel honored to be listed on an invitation is ridiculous.

    ETF: Typo
    Daisypath Anniversary tickers
    MairePoppy
  • Jen4948 said:

    If the groom has a common name, it might even be necessary to identify him as the son of his parents to make clear that John Smith, the son of James and Mary Smith, as opposed to John Smith, the son of Michael and Lucy Smith, is the one marrying the bride.
    This. In some cultures it's a tradition to name people after family members, so there could be multiple people in the family with the same first and last name. FI is Greek and I'm Italian. In both cultures it's tradition to name your first son after his paternal grandfather, so we have some guests with the same first and last name as other guests. (Including same first and last name as FI.)
    In this case it definitely serves a purpose to list the parents for exactly the reason Jen said.
    OurWildKingdomMairePoppy
  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    According to Miss Manners:

    Washington, D.C.: My husband and I did not include his parents' names on our wedding invitation. We felt this was appropriate because (1) it was traditional and (2) his parents did not pay or even offer to pay for a single thing (not even a rehearsal dinner), nor did they assist in any other way. They gave him a very hard time over the omission. We had not anticipated that what we thought was an appropriate invitation would cause such a stir with his parents. Others might find themselves in a similar situation, so your thoughts are appreciated.

    Miss Manners: The traditional form, while still in use, presumed that everyone knew who the bridegroom's family was, probably because they lived next door to the bride's. Some solve the problem of identifying them by a joint wedding invitation from both sets of parents, but they could also simply insert their visiting card in the standard formal invitation.






  • Thank you for posting this, @Viczaesar.  I knot that in many other cultures, the invitation in sent from both sets of parents.  However,  in the OP's case, neither parent is hosting.  This makes wording very difficult.
    If Miss Manners thinks "son of" is OK, I won't argue, but I still prefer the traditional form.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • ViczaesarViczaesar Central Coast, CA member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    I saw that when I was looking for her take on a different issue altogether and it reminded me of this thread, CMGr.  It would be interesting to get an invitation with a visiting card inside!  I bet most people would be all 'What kind of registry card is this?'



    SP29CaitFins
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