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want to elope!

Although my boyfriend of several years hasn't actually proposed to me yet, we've already discussed getting married and we know that we want to spend our lives together, and have already discussed how we want to get married.

We've seriously discussed the idea of eloping. Somehow this got brought up around one of his family members, and she informed us that we weren't allowed to elope. She told us that she didn't want to be left out of it, and that we had to do the whole wedding deal with a ceremony, reception, big white dress, etc.

See, this is part of the reason I want to elope. I want our wedding to be about us, not other people or what they want. I would be finishing up my last year of undergraduate and then starting my Ph.D all while planning this, and I honestly don't know if I would have the time. Plus, I think all the money spent on a wedding (we would be paying for it ourselves) would be put to better use as part of a down payment on a house. 

How can we inform our friends and family that we are really serious about this? I'm really worried that people will be extremely hurt and upset over this choice.

Re: want to elope!

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    SarahPLizSarahPLiz member
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    edited February 2010
    You sound like my sister over 12 years ago. She got married in Vegas, on her way to see grad schools in California. My mother still has not forgiven her, and I can't count all the relatives that have told me I had better have a wedding they can attend, unlike my sister.

    She was also 3 years into her undergrad, but her husband was already done with his bachelors. She now has her PhD and he is finally going back for his masters. Its really hard being in school that long, with one of you supporting the other. Perhaps you should at least wait until you are done with undergrad. I will tell you, though, that they are still very happily married.
     
    Be sensitive to your families feelings, however. IF you are open to having a small DW with immediate family so you don't exclude them totally, I would recommend that over eloping completely alone. I understand that you think its all about you and your FI, but it could cause harm to your relationship with your parents and siblings, as they feel like you are excluding them from a big moment in your life, and that they aren't important enough to share in this moment. It hurts. I got over it, but my mom never did. My dad says he did, but then he reminds me everytime we talk that he's so excited to get to dance with me on my wedding day, and that he wishes he could have done that with my sister as well.

    ETA: A good compromise would be a small ceremony at the courthouse with immediate family only (parents & Siblings) and then a lunch afterwards. It doesn't have to be their style in order for them to attend and participate in this very big step in your life.
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    edited February 2010
    Ditto. I would also tell you just stick to what you guys want and just make it so that you still include the VIP's in your life. A big wedding will not make your marriage more valid =)
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_chit-chat_want-elope?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:14Discussion:95785b1e-e0ad-4ff5-a15d-b98230324b23Post:16cbaede-bda5-4ecb-8f6c-e0d175b3a806">Re: want to elope!</a>:
    [QUOTE]We know when we'll get married- I'll be a semester into my Ph.D and he'll have just finished his. :)  We are going to talk with our families and siblings and see how they would feel about it. However, I get the feeling that most people will want me to have a big wedding, so at the same time we're also considering options that will keep it inexpensive if we do decide to have a traditional wedding. Unfortunately, I foresee that no matter what we do, there is always going to be someone that ends up disappointed and/or upset. :(
    Posted by kitnamy[/QUOTE]

    Yes, please keep an open mind. There will be more people hurt by not being there at all than if you didn't have a big wedding. Good Luck!
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    kit, I've been the MOG and MOB in recent years.  And I have to say that watching my children's faces as they said their vows was one of the greatest joys of my life as their mom.

    I know that my heart would break if I were not able to be present, and although I'd never tell them, I'd also never get over being excluded from one of the most important moments of their lives.

    I'm not telling you what is the right decision for you and your FI.  I'm just speaking as a mom who loves her kids.

    GL
    "Trix, it's what they/our parents wanted. Why so judgemental? And why is your wedding date over a year and a half ago? And why do you not have a groom's name? And why have you posted over 12,000 posts? And why do you always say mean things to brides?" palegirl146
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    There are a number of options,

    1) You could just elope without any further talk of it to your family and accept some people will be very hurt or upset.

    2) You could compromise and have a small destination wedding with your very closest family and friends, that way no-one you really care about will be upset or have to miss it.
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    My fiance and I sort of wanted to elope, but I know that my mother would be truly hurt if she wasn't there.  Trix explained a MOB feelings beautifully.  I simply can't hurt my parents or his parents like that.

    We compromised - no big wedding, no 150 person guest list, no tastings or visits to photographers (I would've cried if I had to do all that); instead parents and siblings only (15 people total) in a small destination wedding/family vacation. 
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    we're having a small destination wedding in Vegas.  we expect about 40 guests.

    both my fiance and i didn't want a big wedding.  i think its been hard for his mom to wrap her head around because both of his other siblings have had a traditional Catholic, full mass ceremony with a reception for 300-400 people to follow.  but in the end, you have to do what you want.  my fiance and i would be miserable if we had to have a big wedding.  so, we're doing what makes us happy.  and if our second cousins that we haven't seen in 5 years are hurt that they weren't invited...oh well.

    we are however going to do the small destination thing, instead of eloping, because we know our immediate families and best friends would be hurt if they weren't there - and their feelings really matter to us.  i'm an only child and i know my mother would murder us herself if she wasn't invited to our wedding.  haha. 

    i think eloping is a bit extreme, but there is no reason why you couldn't have a small wedding.  destination weddings usually accomplish this better (in my opinion).  you have time - look around TK and the boards, and i'm sure you'll find an option that will work for you and your FI :)
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    Ditto Amanda: we called off the 175 person song and dance and instead are planning a Vegas wedding with about 40 people.  It's been really easy to plan (the Vegas local board is a huge help), and a hell of a lot cheaper.  We're actually going to have a much nicer honeymoon than expected and throw a casual party back home for all of our friends, and still come in under budget.

    I think immediate family only would be a good compromise.  Check out offbeatbride.com for some really lovely courthouse weddings/elopments; most of them would have still worked well with a few guests in tow.  Then you can just take everyone out for a nice meal afterward, without all the other usual trappings of a reception.
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    Thanks for all the suggestions! We'll probably end up going with just a very small wedding (destination or not). That way, the people that we love and care about most will be there. :)
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    My husband and I eloped in May of last year. We are planning a reception for this year. I am all for eloping. A big wedding is a lot of stress. I've got enough stress and confusion planning this party/reception/ we're not even sure what to call it. I can't even imagine how I would have planned a "traditional" wedding.
    We were college buds and friends for 6 years, dated for 2 years, lived together for four years and so 12 years after we met, we eloped. It was a natural progression.
    When you know it's the real thing, go for it. The people who love you will understand your decision. Especially in an economy like this. And there are many ways to celebrate!
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