Etiquette

Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!

My FI and I recently got engaged and my mom very graciously offered to throw our engagement party in September. It's a BBQ/campout party so that our friends don't drink and drive home. The problem is that she sent out the invitations with the date of 9/11, rain date of 9/18 and just called me tonight in panic mode because at the time we planned it, we were just looking at "second Saturday rain date third Saturday in September." Only today as she was putting it on her calendar did she realize 9/11 was the day she planned it. OBVIOUSLY it's in HORRIBLY poor taste to throw the party that day, but as it was an honest mistake I'm not mad at her about it. The question I have is, since we already mailed out the invitations is it acceptable to call each person and say that we're pushing the date back a week? A whole bunch of people have already RSVP'd yes and some have even SPECIFICALLY taken off work to come! I don't want to inconvenience people further, but I also don't want anyone under the impression that I think that day is a day to throw a party! No one that has RSVP'd yet has said anything about the date to us, and approximately 25 people have RSVP'd. 
I don't need anyone saying negative things about my mom or me for not realizing, so if that is what you want to post then don't post at all. It was an honest accident. I just want to know your opinions: would it be really rude to ask those that have RSVP'd to rework their schedules again or should we just leave the date as planned since so far no one seems upset about it (besides me). 

Re: Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!

  • I see you're in NJ? Was anyone invited effected directly by 9/11? I don't really think theres much you can do at this point...
    I'm ok with 9/11 wedding and events (unless people invited were directly impacted or there that day or if its in NYC...).

    Telling people what they can and can not post, while in theory may sound good, it typically comes of as snotty. Fyi.
  • I would leave it. I think people would have said something or just not RVSP'd if they were against it...and honestly, people have events every day of the year, including anniversaries...some of which are so old that people don't even think about it. I wouldn't worry about it.
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  • I don't think I'd plan a party for that day, but I also don't think I'd think it was in poor taste if someone else planned one. More than anything, it just depends on your guests and what (if anything) 9/11 means to them and how much they were affected. FWIW, I lived in NYC on 9/11, though I have at least one degree of separation from anyone seriously affected.
  • I see no problem with having a party that day (unless it's a "yippee for terrorists" or something party).

    9/11 is my SIL's birthday.  I almost lost my aunt that day, but I see no reason why my SIL should not be allowed to celebrate her birthday on that day.  A lot of bad things happened on that day, and they need to be remembered, but I don't think is should completely control our lives.  
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  • I would say that's totally ok; I'm sure that there are many memorial activities scheduled that day which your guests may attend, but that doesn't mean that the whole day needs to be off-limits for other activities forevermore. I would personally leave it be. 
  • I grew up in the town that was statistically hardest hit by 9/11. I lost a few close friends, and personally lost 22 people who mattered to me in the tragedy. I also have a close friend whose birthday is September 11. While it's not an easy day for most of us, life has to go on, and I believe that celebrating momentous occasions on that day is important for all of us to move forward.

    Let go of the "stigma" of that day. If something in your life (an engagement, a wedding, the birth of a child) happens that day, think of it that way, and choose instead to think about how everyone who lost their lives in 9/11 would prefer to think of that day as one in which people celebrate life and love...it's cheesy, but it rings true. Think about it--even if you're no hero and don't expect to be remembered as one, wouldn't you like those who survive you to celebrate the day you died as one that means something? I'm nobody, but if the day I die means someone great is born, or somebody realizes they need to do more with the life they're living, it's not a tragic day.

    September 11, 2001 was a horrendous day for me. I won't get over it, however long I live. But it's not a date that forever dooms everything that happens on September 11...I hope the contrary is true. If you're celebrating anything that day, let it be your engagement and marriage, your life, and life in general. Don't let the date ruin your celebration.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-accidentally-planned-engagement-party-911?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:633b87fc-6af0-4dd6-9346-1ce5873dabfePost:e2366a2e-f258-493f-8984-ececaa9d5025">Re: Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!</a>:
    [QUOTE]I grew up in the town that was statistically hardest hit by 9/11. I lost a few close friends, and personally lost 22 people who mattered to me in the tragedy. I also have a close friend whose birthday is September 11. While it's not an easy day for most of us, life has to go on, and I believe that celebrating momentous occasions on that day is important for all of us to move forward. Let go of the "stigma" of that day. If something in your life (an engagement, a wedding, the birth of a child) happens that day, think of it that way, and choose instead to think about how everyone who lost their lives in 9/11 would prefer to think of that day as one in which people celebrate life and love...it's cheesy, but it rings true. Think about it--even if you're no hero and don't expect to be remembered as one, wouldn't you like those who survive you to celebrate the day you died as one that means something? I'm nobody, but if the day I die means someone great is born, or somebody realizes they need to do more with the life they're living, it's not a tragic day. September 11, 2001 was a horrendous day for me. I won't get over it, however long I live. But it's not a date that forever dooms everything that happens on September 11...I hope the contrary is true. If you're celebrating anything that day, let it be your engagement and marriage, your life, and life in general. Don't let the date ruin your celebration.
    Posted by riverjib[/QUOTE]

    I applaud this.
  • As do I. 
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  • I believe those that perished on 9/11 would want those of us living to go on living and celebrating happy times. If you were to die in a national tragedy would you want people to never celebrate anything happy on that date? I wouldn't - it would honor my memory more to have people having fun, celebrating something good and right.
  • Riverjib - wonderfully written and so sorry for your losses (and everyone else's).

    I have co-workers/friends who decided to throw us an engagment party on 9/11 and at first I did a double-take (with the date), but thought it was a lovely gesture (to throw it) and maybe their way of taking a historically awful day and celebrating happier occassions.

    For anyone else having parties thrown in their honor on that day - I know it's a sad, sad day for so many, but it is also people's birthday's, wedding days, etc and think you should not question the sentiments.
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  • 9/11 is a date.  A date when terrible things happened, but it is a date just the same.  I remember after it happened that people very much wanted lives to continue on 9/11 as normal and not turn it into a holiday.  I agree with this mentality.

    December 7th, 1941 marks the day Pearl Harbor was decimated by the Japanese.  My grandmother's generation remembers it well and with hard feelings.  But, she's never had a problem with weddings/birthdays/celebrations occurring on that day because we can remember what it means and still continue living.
  • I totally agree with PPs, espeically riverjb.  Your e-party will still be fun and it will be nice for evyerbody to get together.
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  • Very well stated, riverjib.  Go ahead with your plans, OP.
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  • I agree with everyone else. Unless there are people that were directly affected, I don't see the problem with the date. In fact, even those who may have been directly affected would probably welcome something joyous to celebrate. It's a terrible tragedy, I agree, but as people said, Americans wanted to move forward and not let the terrorists "win." We have to continue to live our lives and celebrate events while honoring the memories of those we've lost.
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  • I got engaged on September 11th, does that mean I shouldn't have celebrated?  Not one person mentioned the date to us when they heard the news.

    Ditto PPs about life goes on and we have to continue to live our lives.
  • I completely agree with PPs. My FI is graduating from his MBA program that day - we're going to celebrate that. A wonderful friend and co-worker of mine is also getting married that day - should she not be able to? Of course she should. 

    While September 11, 2001 was a dreadful day for all Americans - especially those like River (so sorry for all you went through that day) - it doesn't mean it always has to be a horrible day. I personally believe that if we, as a nation, stop our lives and celebrations every time September 11 rolls around, we're continuing to let the terrorists who came after our nation win, year after year. I personally don't want to do that. We'll never forget what happened that day - where we were, who we were with, what we were doing - but we can continue living that day. (getting off my soapbox now ... sorry.)

    All that to say, enjoy your engagement party. Don't make your mom feel bad about it, and tell her it's okay. If you don't make a big deal of it, my guess is that no one else will either.
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  • SparrowSongSparrowSong member
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    edited August 2010
    I really don't think 9/11 needs to be wiped of everyone's calenders for the next 10, 30, 100 years or forever? People can and do get married on the same date that Hiroshima was bombed, Pearl Harbor happened, Kennedy was killed, the Okalhoma City bombing happened... I think the only real difference is that somehow this tragedy ended up being named for it's date and that makes it stick in peoples minds more. But I think it's ok to celebrate the good things that happen on 9/11 too, in the past and in the future. It's just one more way not to let terrorists win, imo.
  • You can't tell people what not to say. It doesn't make any sense to me that neither your mother or you realized what day it was. The invitation clearly stated 9/11.

    Having said that, I don't think it is a big deal that you picked 9/11. I wouldn't have picked that day but I'm sure other people will select that day for events.
  • It's been nine years. Life doesn't end. No one thinks twice of having a wedding on Dec 7.

    That being said, especially in NJ people might come with all kinds of range of emotions, but unless your circle/town had lots of loss, just go with it. Some brides had to make the tough decision of getting married on Sept 11 this year so it's not like NO ONE plans a party.

    If you feel strongly about it, say a few words, a moment of silence, a toast, etc. Otherwise, there is no reason to bring it up. Grief is a private matter and some people might not want to share.

    Also, if someone was significantly impacted, your party might be a good way to spend the day and a welcome distraction from the sadness.
  • I agree with other pp's. You have people already replying yes, so they don't see a big problem with that date. Celebrate it as your life and those that died if you want take a moment of silence or something and honor them. But life goes on they all wouldn't want you to sit back and do absolutely nothing on that day.

    Others have said it better. Just go forward with your celebration of your engagement and have fun.
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  • KentuckyKateKentuckyKate member
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    edited August 2010
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-accidentally-planned-engagement-party-911?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:633b87fc-6af0-4dd6-9346-1ce5873dabfePost:746a54ef-615a-4ac5-afdd-ee6a638b1423">Re: Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!</a>:
    [QUOTE]I really don't think 9/11 needs to be wiped of everyone's calenders for the next 10, 30, 100 years or forever? <strong>People can and do get married on the same date that Hiroshima was bombed, Pearl Harbor happened, Kennedy was killed, the Okalhoma City bombing happened... I think the only real difference is that somehow this tragedy ended up being named for it's date and that makes it stick in peoples minds more. </strong>But I think it's ok to celebrate the good things that happen on 9/11 too, in the past and in the future. It's just one more way not to let terrorists win, imo.
    Posted by SparrowSong[/QUOTE]
    Interesting point.  I agree with this.
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  • My bridal shower is that day and I know that we  are going to have a blast. I always think about what happened on that date inour country, but all in all, it is a date and life must go on.

    Have you party and have a great time.
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  • Everyone here has really been great. Riverjib, I'm so sorry for your losses, but thank you so much for your kind and supportive words. My best friend and FI felt the same way. My Aunt, who was in NYC that day, told me on the phone today that it is an opportunity to celebrate the freedom we have living in this country, and to create positive memories that will always remind us of those freedoms. I'm keeping the date, and it's going to be a beautiful memory. Thank you everyone for calming my nerves and helping me realize that just because we're celebrating love and life together that day doesn't mean we don't respect and care for those we lost. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-accidentally-planned-engagement-party-911?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:633b87fc-6af0-4dd6-9346-1ce5873dabfePost:8a493f79-7499-490f-ae7f-a972b56f61c6">Re: Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!</a>:
    [QUOTE]I believe those that perished on 9/11 would want those of us living to go on living and celebrating happy times. If you were to die in a national tragedy would you want people to never celebrate anything happy on that date? I wouldn't - it would honor my memory more to have people having fun, celebrating something good and right.
    Posted by skippylouwho[/QUOTE]


    This is my thought also
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  • They tried to destroy us that day.  They failed.  We morned the loss of loved ones and complete strangers.  We cried.  We donated blood, time and money to rescue efforts.  We sent our loved ones to war.  And we survived. We survived to go to school, get engaged, get married, give birth.  Every time we celebrate life the terrorists fail all over again. 
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  • I agree with moving on.
  • Honestly, if you had to avoid any day on which a tragedy occurred, you'd probably have only about three days a year on which you could have a party.  Would it be ok to have one on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor?  On the anniversary of Kristallnacht?  I could continue, but I think you get the idea.

    Enjoy your party, and don't worry about the date.
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_mom-accidentally-planned-engagement-party-911?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:633b87fc-6af0-4dd6-9346-1ce5873dabfePost:3631d26e-894d-4c49-9a86-956efce674d6">Re: Mom accidentally planned our engagement party for 9/11 HELP!</a>:
    [QUOTE]Honestly, if you had to avoid any day on which a tragedy occurred, you'd probably have only about three days a year on which you could have a party.  Would it be ok to have one on the anniversary of Pearl Harbor?  On the anniversary of Kristallnacht?  I could continue, but I think you get the idea. Enjoy your party, and don't worry about the date.
    Posted by 2dBride[/QUOTE]

    My thoughts exactly.  Many days are historically bad days, and if we tried to avoid them all, there would be no days left!

    I'm getting married on Sept. 12, and my rehearsal BBQ is on the 11th.  No one has mentioned to me that it is in poor taste.  Take  a moment to think of those who lost their lives that day, and then enjoy your party.  No one will think poorly of you for it.
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