Luxury Weddings

Taking Advantage?

I need perspective...

Since we are having a destination wedding we decided to pay everyone's way. Flight, resort, rental car, food, etc. My FMIL came dress shopping with me and explained that she didn't want to fly... She wanted to take a week off of work and enjoy a nice drive down to FL. I said that sounds great and offered to pay for her rental car, and one that is hybrid to save on gas.

When I came home my fl said his mom called him and told him her plan. He thought it sounded good as well. However.... I guess she said to him something along the lines of "if you don't pay for my gas too then I'm not coming cause I can't afford it".

My fiance was pissed. The way I see it is It's much cheaper than a flight, who cares! But not him. He figures he's being taken advantage of and I do see where he's coming from. This happens a lot, not just with her but with a lot of family and friends. They find out how well off we are and all of a sudden we get a call after 2 years of talking to someone and they "need help with a credit card bill" or "need a cosigner".

I adore my FMIL but I think a line was crossed by threatening to not come without gas money. Fl feels she's being ungrateful. I convinced my fl to let it slide and just pay for the gas. We want her there!

Does anyone else deal with this sort of thing??

Re: Taking Advantage?

  • Financial situations like what you described above, and taking advatange of family, is one of the main reasons I am no longer married to my first husband. His family had a habit of asking for money and it wasn't to help them through a hard situation. In this case, I'd tell your FI that you agree that it's not right of her to ask, but that if she can keep it within the same cost as a flight, you'll just do it to keep the peace. Car rentals are not cheap as of late, though, so definitely shop around. However, I HIGHLY encourage you to work together to prevent situations like this in the future by being on the same page about turning people down. I would hate to see people in the situation I was in and have it completely wreck a relationship.


  • Thanks for the insight. I agree to save the peace we are goingto rent the car for her. We're both a little tired of the requests and have been on the same page the majority of the time. How do you approach it when people ask for money (without losing relationships) when you just have to say no?
  • In my situation, I have only ever been asked for money from my formal ILs or my DH's kids. The situation with the ILs was obviously a very sore subject and it did not turn out well for me in the end. The kid thing was more than just asking for money for clothes or to go to the movies, which is totally legit. I'd be a fool to be mad about that :) However, his one daughter would call us screaming at my DH for money because she felt she deserved it. She did it to her mom, too. He was basically bullied into giving her thousands of dollars that she did not deserve (she had some issues) and we got into it a lot over it. I eventually had to back off and let him figure out what was really going on. He eventually learned the hard way- by realizing he was being used and only enabling her behavior. Now that he is on the same page as me, when she calls for anything, I don't even get involved. After all, they aren't my kids. He just knows how I feel and he tells her that he'll help her with certain things, but he is not just handing her over money without oversight. She's only 21, so she just gets pissed and moves on to the next parent who she can manipulate. She has gotten better, though. So, in my case, it's just natually improving over time as she matures. I have never had to deal with my parents, as they are both very successful and self sufficient. I really don't have any extended family, so no help there. From my experience, though, it's best to just come to an agreement upfront, before anyone else asks for anything and tempers are hot. Just draw up an agreement on paper or even just verbally and list out the situations where you would help and list out the situations where you won't. If mom comes to you and says she needs a new CC, and that's not on the "yes" list, just tell her that you are willing to help her out if a serious issue arises, but at this time, you are not able to make anything work. If she comes to you and says that she broke her leg and needs help paying a medical bill, and medical bills are on the "yes" list, then you can tell her you'll gladly help. But, ask to see the bill and tell her you'll pay it directly to the doctor. That's what we did with my DH's kids and it's helped set expectations up front.


  • Very helpful @Jells2dot0... I appreciate it :)
  • I agree with jells2dot0. Definitely never hand over cash. I end up helping my Grandma and parents out quite a bit, but they are irresponsible with money so when they call and say they can't pay the electric bill or something I write a check out to the electric company, not them. That has actually helped keep the asking to a minimum because they know they have to be telling the truth about what they need money for.
  • I'm sorry to hear others are going through what I went through. I know it happens, but I guess more than I realize. I was put into a very uncomfortable and awkward position with my ex-ILs (I was the breadwinner in my relationship, so even more so than normal) and it's a very difficult thing to work through with a spouse. I hope that all that go through this do not end up with the same outcome as me. Granted, there are other reason I am divorced, but my degraded relationship with my ILs because of money was a big issue.


  • And I just realized I said "formal ILs" above. LOL I meant "former."


  • WOW again I didnt know there were so many people that could relate. My family has asked me to cosign on student loans, personal loans, car loans, asked if they could move into my house, you name it they have asked. Sheesh. Well as far the OP, I'm glad it sounds like the gas and car are cheaper than the flight and I hope it all works out.
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