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Conflict - Wedding Conundrum

Hey girls, I was wondering if you could provide some advice on a conundrum I'm having. 

DH and I got married in May.  Ever since we got engaged, we have been talking about having a second wedding reception down in Brazil over the Christmas holidays in 2011 for those who were unable to make it (DH is Brazilian).  However, at our wedding we learned that our koumbaros -- sort of like a best man but more important in the Orthodox Christian church, as he baptizes your first-born kid -- is having his wedding in Florida on December 30, 2011.  DH and I are both in grad school, so this wedding right smack in the middle of the holidays complicates going to Brazil.  It is especially complicated, as I plan to undergo surgery on January 5 and will be stuck in crutches for six weeks afterwards.

So the question is, who should take priority in this incidence -- our second recpetion in Brazil for which we never set a date, or my friend's wedding who only sent us an official save the date one week ago?  The koumbaros is my friend as opposed to my husband's, so my husband feels like we should skip the wedding and keep our commitment to family.  However, I feel like this would seriously jeopardize my friendship, especially when this good friend was very supportive of us over the past few years and flew all the way to San Francisco to support us for our wedding.  How do I handle this without offending someone?

P.S. Sorry I've been incommunicado on these boards for a while.  I've moved to Boston, and I've been trying to get settled before law school starts next week.  It's been pretty insane. 

Re: Conflict - Wedding Conundrum

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    DramaGeekDramaGeek member
    5 Love Its First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Does his family expect you for Christmas time?  If you've already told them you're planning to be there during December, I think you need to honor that.  If this guy is such a good friend, how is it that you're just finding out about his wedding?  Is he having a really short engagement?  When you marry over the holidays, you have to expect that, unless you clear it with people first, there will be people who have conflicts.

    I guess what I would do is go to Brazil if you've already made that commmitment.  If you never told the family you'd be there over Christmas, go to Florida and find a time to be in Brazil - spring break perhaps? - and tell the family that's when you'll be there.
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    GJones27GJones27 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Yes, I had told his family we were looking to come for the holidays, but this was a year out or something.  This was also before I learned I'd have to do surgery. My friend is having a rather short engagement.  I was quite surprised by the close date and notification, especially when it's Christmas-time.  Spring break overlaps for us, so that is an option, but March is nearly a year after our wedding.  It's also hard traveling all the way to Brazil for just a week in March, especially when I'll be in the middle of classes during my first year of law school (the first year is super critical for a law student).  Nothing is ideal...
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    edited December 2011

    I'm confused why you surgery is relevant, wouldn't your family visit or your friend's wedding be before your surgery anyhow?

    You'll have to decide whether or not you want to spend holidays with your family or go to this wedding. It would definitely be fair of you NOT to go to this wedding, given the short-notice he can't exactly expect you to drop every plan you have. However, I would not phrase it as your 2nd reception taking priority over his wedding, because weddings, to me, do take priority over 2nd receptions. So to me the issue is that he planned his wedding when you already had family holiday plans (and that family is not down the street and therefore plans are very difficult to rearrange). I wouldn't talk to him about how tenative your holiday plans are, he doesn't need to know that.

    On the other hand, I think this far out family would understand if you wanted to go to a wedding of a VERY close friend instead of visiting, since it looks like you only had tentative plans anyhow.

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    GJones27GJones27 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for the advice.  The surgery is relevant since I can't go to Brazil after my friend's wedding.  (Classes start again on January 17.)  Unfortunately, my friend already knows that it is a second wedding reception since I've already mentioned it in passing.  Not sure how else I would describe it, since we already had the wedding.  
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    FaithCaitlinFaithCaitlin member
    5 Love Its First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I'm going to be honest here: if I were in your shoes, I'd go to Brazil. Althought you didn't set a date, I think it's important you go because you told DH and DH's family you'd be there.

    It also seems that your DH would rather go to Brazil and I think that's something to consider as well.

    Again, being honest, your friend's notice was short and poorly planned for a holiday season wedding. I would be completely honest with the couple and say "We have had plans to go to Brazil for about a year now. I can't push back the plans because of my surgery and spring semester. I am so sorry that we won't be able to come to your wedding." Hopefully your friend would understand your position.

    You are right though-- no situation is ideal. You will figure it out and come to the best solution. Let us know what you decide to do and GL!

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    DramaGeekDramaGeek member
    5 Love Its First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Given that you already told the family that you were planning to be there over the holidays and that you've mentioned to your friend that you were planning it, I think you need to honor those plans.  A good friend missed our wedding because she was studying overseas.  While I was sad she couldn't be there, I totally understood why and made sure to catch up when she returned.  We shared pictures with each other, told each other about the adventures we had while she was away, and had a great time.  Maybe you could plan something like that with your friend and his wife for sometime after everything settles down (again, spring break or even next summer if a lot of travel would be involved).
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    ravenrayravenray member
    5 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/cultural-wedding-boards_christian-weddings_conflict-wedding-conundrum?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Cultural%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:464687ae-7bc1-4360-9aea-999e11f1e1adDiscussion:72ad70c0-166c-4eb1-8162-7a1943700503Post:74d35d2c-7341-4c5b-8a99-ef8fe0f73f3a">Re: Conflict - Wedding Conundrum</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm going to be honest here: if I were in your shoes, I'd go to Brazil. Althought you didn't set a date, I think it's important you go because you told DH and DH's family you'd be there. It also seems that your DH would rather go to Brazil and I think that's something to consider as well. Again, being honest, your friend's notice was short and poorly planned for a holiday season wedding. I would be completely honest with the couple and say "We have had plans to go to Brazil for about a year now. I can't push back the plans because of my surgery and spring semester. I am so sorry that we won't be able to come to your wedding." Hopefully your friend would understand your position. You are right though-- no situation is ideal. You will figure it out and come to the best solution. Let us know what you decide to do and GL!
    Posted by FaithCaitlin[/QUOTE]
    I agree with her.  Plane tickets aren't cheep.  Like people give advice on other boards no one is as thrilled about your wedding as you are so I think your firned will understand and get over it.
    "Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained"-C.S. Lewis

    Married! May 27th, 2012

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    edited December 2011
    Hmmm for some reason, I think I might go to the wedding. That's just me, but I think if I didn't have set plans to go to Brazil at that exact time and this is one of your best friends, I would go to the wedding. That being said, your husband is your family now, so if he would truly be mad at you and is really set on going at that time, you have to do what's best for your marriage over what's best for your friendship. It is a tough decision. I would talk to your H and his family and explain the situation and see what they think. The spring break thing isn't ideal by any means, but it is an option. Either way, I'm sure it will all work out for the best. Pray about it! 

    Also, is everything okay with the surgery thing? 
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    iamjoesgurliamjoesgurl member
    First Anniversary First Comment
    edited December 2011
    I would hope your friend will understand.  I think your DH's family would be so disappointed if you don't end up going there.  If I was in your shoes, I'd go and do the reception in Brazil.
    image
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    GJones27GJones27 member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Thanks for your suggestions.  It's different than what I have been hearing on this end.  My mom, who knows the situation well, feels like I can't skip the friend's wedding (the koumbaros has a really important role in the Greek Orthodox Church, which she understands.)  When DH brought up this conflict with his family, they seemed to be understanding, but I don't know if they are secretly disappointed or something.  Right now, I'm even contemplating whether I should even attempt to do both... spend 6 days in Brazil to attend the second reception and then go to the wedding on the way back to the States.  While I am now considering skipping the wedding in Florida, DH is now even starting to feel bad about the idea of us skipping our koumbaros' wedding.  Decisions, decisions...

    AshNoe, I'm hoping the surgery is going to be okay.  I have a bad injury in my hip that needed surgery years ago, but I was never properly diagnosed until recently.  It has now been causing some major complications.  The surgery is not going to be a serious one, but they don't know the extent of damage to the cartiledge looking at the MRI.  I'm praying the damage will be minimal, as otherwise I'll have to undergo a hip replacement in the future.  Recovery from surgery will also stink... six weeks in crutches and pain during my first year of law school.
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    edited December 2011
    Aw, I'm sorry about that! Well I will say a prayer for you.. about the surgery AND the decision! (PS- I would probably try to do both too haha). 
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    edited December 2011
    I'd go to Brazil.

    H and I were married in July 2010.  For Spring Festival of this year (in February), we made a trip to Taiwan to visit all his extended family members that was really expensive due to the holiday.  It would have been more manageable for us to go another time, however, his family was really desiring that we could make it and so we went.  Yes, it was costly and it *interrupted* other plans we were considering making, but family is family and we got off to a good start by spending our first Spring Festival as a married couple with them.  I know they aren't going to forget the investment of time and finances we put in to get oursevles there to celebrate with them.  We don't have any regrets about the trip at all.  We would have regretted NOT going- I'm pretty certain of that.

    I agree that your friends are late on their game if they're planning a wedding over the holidays!  You really just now got the STD?
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