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Father Help!

When I first got engaged my older sister followed suit a few days later and picked a date in July. My FI and I had already decided we wanted to get married in May so we decided to wait the following year, 2011, to get married. My parents both thought this to be wise because she was older and should get married first (what?) I didn't get there reasoning especially since my sister had been dating her husband for about 9 months when they got engaged and my FI and I had been together for 2 and a half years at that point. But that isn't what really bothered me because I wasn't in any hurry to get married and really wanted the extra time to plan it perfectly. What is really bothering me is now in the after math of my sister's July wedding and my current wedding planning.

My sister was the first born and in doing so became my Dad's favorite. So now in the planning of my wedding he is comparing everything to her wedding. Unfortunately for her she didn't have inlaws like I do who are willing to help with the financial aspects of the wedding, so my budget is twice as much as hers. My Dad feels like I should still down grade my wedding so it isn't as big as her's was. And any time I do something different then she did he criticizes. The most recent example:

My FI and I decided that we wanted to take our formal pictures before the wedding. We made this decision for various reasons and a few of them based on the fact that my sister and her now husband were unable to enjoy cocktail hour at their wedding and their pictures looked and felt rushed. It was one of the most stressful situations to be in and I didn't enjoy watching my sister go through that. So we came to the decision to see each other before the wedding and get all of our pictures done first.

My Dad thinks this is a terrible idea and has verbally made this known. He says that we won't be married in our pictures so they won't have any meaning. He says that my sisters pictures went fine so there is no reason to not do it her way. He says that I am ruining tradition and my family is going to be hurt that they won't be able to watch us take pictures (what?)

I have told my Dad how I feel a few times as well as told my Mom but he just doesn't seem to understand my feelings. Between my FILs and my parents they are splitting the costs of the wedding, minus the photographer which my FI and I are paying for. Although this is the case everyone involved, except my Dad, is being very relaxed and allowing me to make my own decisions. It is just difficult to tell my Dad how I am feeling when I don't want to seem ungrateful or rude, after all he is paying for the wedding.

Is anyone else dealing with emotional fathers? I just don't know how else to talk to my Dad to show him that although my sisters wedding was good, there were a lot of things that no one expected, as it was the first wedding in our family, and I am hoping to improve on those unexpected mishaps?

Ok venting done!

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Re: Father Help!

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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_chit-chat_father?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:14Discussion:de0efd6b-1ef5-464a-87e9-b44ff3c8d04dPost:9a73d44c-fdd6-4cb3-99b6-9de3364dcb66">Re: Father Help!</a>:
    [QUOTE]He gets a voice if he's paying for any of it.  If he's not, then stop sharing your plans with him. Then you won't get unwanted feedback.
    Posted by RetreadBride[/QUOTE]

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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_chit-chat_father?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding BoardsForum:14Discussion:de0efd6b-1ef5-464a-87e9-b44ff3c8d04dPost:55e84edb-cf2f-49b9-98e8-91aacc284ad3">Father Help!</a>:
    [QUOTE]When I first got engaged my older sister followed suit a few days later and picked a date in July. My FI and I had already decided we wanted to get married in May so we decided to wait the following year, 2011, to get married. My parents both thought this to be wise because she was older and should get married first (what?) I didn't get there reasoning especially since my sister had been dating her husband for about 9 months when they got engaged and my FI and I had been together for 2 and a half years at that point. But that isn't what really bothered me because I wasn't in any hurry to get married and really wanted the extra time to plan it perfectly. What is really bothering me is now in the after math of my sister's July wedding and my current wedding planning. My sister was the first born and in doing so became my Dad's favorite. So now in the planning of my wedding he is comparing everything to her wedding. Unfortunately for her she didn't have inlaws like I do who are willing to help with the financial aspects of the wedding, so my budget is twice as much as hers. My Dad feels like I should still down grade my wedding so it isn't as big as her's was. And any time I do something different then she did he criticizes. The most recent example: My FI and I decided that we wanted to take our formal pictures before the wedding. We made this decision for various reasons and a few of them based on the fact that my sister and her now husband were unable to enjoy cocktail hour at their wedding and their pictures looked and felt rushed. It was one of the most stressful situations to be in and I didn't enjoy watching my sister go through that. So we came to the decision to see each other before the wedding and get all of our pictures done first. My Dad thinks this is a terrible idea and has verbally made this known. He says that we won't be married in our pictures so they won't have any meaning. He says that my sisters pictures went fine so there is no reason to not do it her way. He says that I am ruining tradition and my family is going to be hurt that they won't be able to watch us take pictures (what?) I have told my Dad how I feel a few times as well as told my Mom but he just doesn't seem to understand my feelings. Between my FILs and my parents they are splitting the costs of the wedding, minus the photographer which my FI and I are paying for. Although this is the case everyone involved, except my Dad, is being very relaxed and allowing me to make my own decisions. It is just difficult to tell my Dad how I am feeling when I don't want to seem ungrateful or rude, after all he is paying for the wedding. Is anyone else dealing with emotional fathers? I just don't know how else to talk to my Dad to show him that although my sisters wedding was good, there were a lot of things that no one expected, as it was the first wedding in our family, and I am hoping to improve on those unexpected mishaps? Ok venting done!
    Posted by dunn1678[/QUOTE]

    I fear that by capitalizing on your sister's misfortunes, your dad may think that you're trying to "one-up" her.  FWIW - I think that the "you won't be married in your pictures" argument is ridiculous, however, you need to take your father's feelings into account if he's paying for half of your wedding.  Also, the main point of the cocktail hour is to give your guests something to do WHILE you go take pictures.  Most people don't expect to attend that part of the reception.  

    Bottom line:  if your father is being difficult, refuse his offer of money, and plan the wedding that you can afford on your own. 
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    I don't see why this is a big deal to your dad. It really won't have much affect on him at all. Does he usually get involved in these kind of details? Maybe you just have to let him express his opinion, without arguing with him about it. Tell him you are considering the pros and cons of having the pictures before or after the ceremony. Then do what you want to do. In the meantime, don't make an issue of it.
                       
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    The way I see it, since you're covering the photographer yourselves, it's up to the two of you how you want to have the pictures. And who really wants to see other people get their pictures taken, honestly? I'm sorry your dad feels the need to compare you to your sister. It's definitely not healthy to force you to compete that way.
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    Possibly part of what is happening here is that your sister's wedding is the only information he has to go on.  If this is the first wedding (since his own) that he was very involved in planning, then he has no other frame of reference except for your sister's wedding.  That said, he should try to be more open minded about your wedding plans.  You are not a carbon copy of your sister and should not be treated as such.

    I would show him information from magazines, TV shows, and other places that show him that not every step of the process is carved in stone.  He may not realize that you can mess with tradition these days, and it is totally acceptable.

    Good luck.  I hope your dad has a change of heart!

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    I defiantly think you should get your sister involved.   Because if you two are close, she will want you to be able to have the wedding you want, not the wedding your dad wants you to have.  And even if you arn't close, let your sis in on what's going on anyway. I know that she, as a former bride, will not want your wedding to be a replica of hers.

    (At least this is what I would do if in this situation. My sister, who was married erlyer this year would completely back me up.)
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    I personally have a difficult time with my sister and Dad, and understand the heartache. If I was in your position I would either just listen to your Dads opinion and thank him for it without expressing back what you think, or take his opinion with a grain of salt. Let him know what is important to you with ease. Staying calm and not getting upset does help you in the long run. If the problem(s) continue just listen to your Dad. The other option is to pay for the wedding yourself to ease your mind from the stress from your Dad. Hope this helps. Good luck!
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