Moms and Maids
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FMIL guest list headache

FMIL is giving us a hard time about the guest list.  We are inviting parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, and siblings of grandparents as well as any minor children in family units (so FI's cousin's 5 year old is invited, but his great-aunt's daughter is not).  We are inviting fewer than 10 people who are not related to us, and we are inviting my grandfather's cousin and his wife, who basically acted as surrogate grandparents while FI and I were in college.  FMIL wants to invite her entire side of the family - so FI's great-aunts' children and grandchildren.  These additional people are all local, but they have a reputation for causing drama at any family event they show up to, or before and after any event they are not invited to.  They would likely show up to the wedding if invited.  FI is adamant that we not invite these people.  We cannot afford to invite them.  They are not invited to the family Christmases and Thanksgivings, and it would double the guest list to invite them.

We are paying for the wedding, but FMIL has offered to pay for these additional people.  How can I (politely) tell her we are not going to accept her offer?  She won't talk to FI about wedding plans (asks him to put me on the phone when he tries), and she and I are going to go out to put a deposit on my dress this weekend, so I think this weekend is the best time to address it.  She has seen both the reception and ceremony venues and knows that they could hold the extra people.  Is there an easy way to make her accept that this is our wedding and we will invite who we want, or are we being unreasonable?

FTR, I've lived local to FI's family for a year and haven't met the people his mother wants to add.  The only relatives of mine that FI hasn't met that we are inviting live on the opposite coast.
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Re: FMIL guest list headache

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    quotequeenquotequeen member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Tell her that you appreciate the offer, but money is not the issue.  You and FI want an intimate wedding, and you have decided only to invite those closest to you.  End of story.
    Married 10/2/10
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    tldhtldh member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Ditto Quote Queen.  Tell FMIL that if you invite her side of the family then you have to invite all of FFIL's and all of yours from both sides at which point your guest list is out of control and it is no longer the wedding you and FI want to have. 

    Do not cave to her offer to pay otherwise you really risk losing control of your wedding.

    EDIT:  Also tell FI to grow a backbone and tell his mother that this is also his wedding and anything she wants to talk about can be discussed with him.  It sound like she's a pushy woman whom he is more than happy to hand off to you and she knows she's more likely to be able to get you to change your mind than her son. You are more likely to cave to keep the peace and not be blamed for her being put out.  Her son can tell her no without this worry.
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    AKA GoodLuckBear14
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    AutumnFairAutumnFair member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Ditto to all the ladies. Your situation sounds exactly like my friend for her wedding. Her MIL wanted to add everyone she knows and my friend did not want it. It took a few months of "sorry, we want a more intimate wedding" line and bean dipping aka changing the subject, for her to get that these people were not going to be invited (luckily my friend had me to vent to when she got frustrated). So yes, stick to your guns, and definitely get your FI to take charge of this issue telling his mom that these people are not going to invited, end of the discussion. 
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    edited December 2011
    You don't tell her anything. She is your FI's mother. He is the one that is adamant about not inviting them. Have him talk to her. This is his battle, not yours.

    However, if she won't budge thankfully she has offered to pay for them. My FMIL offered to pay for her friends until she found out the per person price. She ended up cutting her list because she didn't want to pay such a high amount. Make sure your FI tells her how much she will be paying per person. It would be nice to let her in on that so that she doesn't get shocked and back out later.
    Anniversary
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    trix1223trix1223 member
    5 Love Its Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Tell your FI that discussions with his mom about your wedding are his responsibility.  And then ditto the other ladies.  He needs to make his mom understand that it's not about the money, it's about the size of the wedding.

    And also remember:  it's not only the per person price that you have to include if the guest list is increasing.  It's additional invitations, tables, linens, CP's, etc.  The cost increases exponentially as you add guests.
    "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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    edited December 2011
    If your FI is adament about not wanting them, then he should deal with his mother.
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    edited December 2011
    FI needs to man up and handle the conversations with his mother rather than just passing the phone off to you - if he can't stand up to his mommy now, when will he? Start setting boundaries now otherwise this woman will continue to insert her opinions into your marriage as she sees fit.

    And yes, he and you together if it comes to that, can let her know that while you appreciate her offer this is not about the money and you'd prefer to keep the wedding as intimate as you had originally planned. If she'd like to see the whole family, she's certainly welcome to host her own BBQ or reunion (not that I recommend telling her that last part).
    The Bump ate my signature. DD - Apr 2011 DS - expected June 2013
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    pokepoke27pokepoke27 member
    Combo Breaker First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I agree with PPs. It's not always about the money, is it? My mom is insisting that I invite everyone SHE'S ever met. "They won't come anyways, so why not send an invite?" she tells me. Since we still haven't finalized the guest list I haven't actually been firm or anything, just sort of rolled my eyes and gotten on with things. However, when it comes to it, I'm just going to say
    "Mom, I do not want to invite these people to my wedding. I have never met so and so, and I haven't seen so and so in 10 years. We can not afford for extra people, and I can not risk inviting more than I can afford. What if they do turn up unexpectedly?"
    However, if she was offereing to pay for the extras, I would just stick to the first part. Make sure you sort of stress the MY WEDDING part lol.
    As for not talking to your FI, it could just be because she thinks he has no interest in planning. If that is the case, your FI should set her straight - and quickly. While I think it is important for him to stand up to his mother, I think it is equally important to show his mother that you are about to become a part of the family. Either tell her together or tell her yourself. Just say it in a respectful way. And even if she gets upset or angry, stay calm and assure her that you appreciate the offer, but that you and your FI BOTH just want to keep things intimate.
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