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Canada-Toronto

In-law problems

i have a small problem with the in-law side.  i have a very small family, but my in-law side of the family is huge.  the wedding planner (whom is a really good friend of that side of the family) and myself are trying to keep the amount of people to 200-250.  when we did the rough draft of a seating arrangement we ended up with an extra 100 people on the in-law side.  so the wedding planner and myself & fiance set down and scaled back.  my fiance and i are paying for this wedding ourselves.  we are not looking for help from any of our parents.

we told my in-laws that we had to scale back some people because it was just to much and money is tight as it is.  just recently when i was out with my fiance & mother in-law we bumped into someone that we are inviting to our wedding and my mother in-law suggested to the invitee for them to bring their whole familyn not just the peoplle that are written down on the invitation.  when i heard this i thought i was going to scream.  but i stayed calm and just looked over at my fiance with a look like what is she doing. 

i found out this morning that my mother in-law apparently saw me give this look to my fiance and was not pleased for the way i reacted about her asking this invitee to bring other people with him.  i don't get it anymore.  my fiance agrees that we have to keep the guest list limited since it's tight with money, yet he's allowing his mother to invite whomever she wants and won't back me up.  i'm not sure what to do anymore.  i'm always turning out to be the bad one.  please share some advice.  thanks!

Re: In-law problems

  • Had a similar problem, but MY family is the larger one.  We told our families that they can invite all the ppl in the world as long as they pay for their plates.  That seemed to be a good compromise for our families.  From what I have been exposed to, usually the rule is, if you're (parents) aren't paying or contributing to the wedding they don't get to invite their friends (well maybe close family friends but not ALL of them).  If your hall can accommodate it, why not ask the parents to pay for some of their guests?


  • the in-laws can't pay for some of their guests, because they don't have the money.  i have scaled back as many people as i possibly can from my side.  i have a very tiny family as it is and i'm very comfortable to pay for them all. 
  • This is a FI issue; he's going to have to be the one to put his foot down with your in-laws.  If he can't do it now, he won't ever do it after you're married, most likely. 

    My family is super-small and my FI's is huge - however, I have way more friends to invite than him.  Regardless, we made the same cut-off on both sides of the family (parents, grandparents, siblings, and anyone who is constantly involved in our lives only).  We're also paying for everything, so we have all the say.  Our wedding is a lot smaller, though (83) so getting cranky after you're already having so many guests is kind of unfair and rude of MIL.

    Talk to your FI and explain that you two had an agreement, that your mother is disregarding it, and that you are firm on this.  He has to talk to her, and while his family can't afford the extra people, that's precisely what he should say:  if you want anyone else there, you pay.  Oh, you can't?  Then please respect our wallets and wishes. 

    Did you let the in-laws look over the invites list and give you a "must invite" list?  That sometimes helps, too....

  • I would cross-post this to the Etiquette board. You will get a lot of advice there.
  • I can already tell you what the E-board's going to say and that is, since you're paying, you get to say who's invited and you should only invite as many people as you can afford. They will also advise that you don't ask your FILs or your parents to pay for anything unless they offer.   I suggest talking to your fiancé - this is definitely is his problem and like PPs said, he's got to learn to put his foot down now.  Otherwise, you're going to end up with quite the bill at the end of the wedding.

    With those people that your FMIL told to bring more people - just have a conversation with them and let them know what happened.  I'm sure they'll understand.
  • Your FI needs to stand up to his mother and tell her to STFU.
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  • thanks ladies for the great advice!  what my fiance & myself decided to do is tell both sides of the family that if from their side of the family/friends bring extra people and especially if the parents from my side or his side ok'd they are paying for them and we're going to ask for money up front to be put into our wedding account.  that i think works best. 
  • In my opinion, if you are paying for it then you get to decide who comes and who doesn't.  Simple as that.  Would it be possible to sit down with them and explain, or have FI explain, that this is how it will work.  If they want more people or if there are people that they want there that you have not invited then they need to pay for them.  Mine and FI's parents are each contributing a set amount (for which we are very grateful) toward our wedding.  As a part of that it was understood that they would get some say in who is invited.  They've been great about it and so far its worked really well.  Hopefully you can get it all figured out. 
  • I would tell her to stop inviting people unless she is prepared to pay for them! My FI is Italian and has a HUGE family, his parents guest list is over 200 people, my families is 40 people (18 international guest and who knows if they will come) We have about 70 friends / co-workers invited and FI parents have said it is not fair that my parents / FI and I pay for there huge guest list and have offered to pay for our wedding.
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  • i totally agree with everyone here.  again thanks to everyone for their awesome advice!  it's appreciated.
  • If you don't get your FI to put his foot down now you'll end up like me with the guest list over the capacity of the hall and FMIL adding another 2 people every time she calls to say hi.
    I showed FMIL our list the last time we went over for dinner and told her she needed to cut 20 ppl to make both sides even and to get back down to the hall's maximum capacity. It was not pretty. I've also told her if she forgot someone "important" she needs to remove someone else anytime she has a new name for us.
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