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April 2013 Weddings

Am I going down the right road?

My mom is being stubborn. She often has some opinions I dont agree with and I tell her "I dont like that." So then she locks up and wont give me anymore help. Often this is about things I have spent time choosing and at last minute she tells me "that will not look good." Or after I found my dress, she went on for days about other ones that "are so much prettier." Usually I ignore these tantrums she has because she has not agreed to pay for anything. This is very difficult because I still have not set a budget because my fiance and I wanted to pay for as much as we can. Do I need to stop all planning and set a budget before I purchase everything? We dont want a big wedding, no band, no expensive flowers. Just about everything for the wedding is DIY.
Mostly all I have done is window shop and plan. The most expensive thing right now is my dress and that is under $1000.

Re: Am I going down the right road?

  • edited November 2012
    I'm a bit confused. What's the issue here? Is it your mom not liking what you're choosing? If so, just stop talking to her about it. You dont' need her approval on anything if you're buying it, so just stop bringing it up and she won't be able to be negative about it.

    If you are expecting her to give money, you need to talk to her about it now. First, you  need to know what she's going to give you so you can budget accordingly (more to come on that). Second, if she pays, she does get some say so you do need to respect her opinion on some things. Everything? No. But at least the items she's paying for.

    As for a budget, I'd say you DEFINITELY need to set one unless you have pretty much unlimited funds. Wedding stuff adds up. I don't know about your area, but in mine, it adds up FAR too quickly. We set a budget overall that we wanted to hit and then used theknot and weddingwire's budgeting tools to help us figure out approximately what we should be spending on big budget items. We then fiddled with that based on what was important to us (we didn't want a videographer, but we did want a nicer photographer, we don't need ceremony flowers, but we do need dance floor lighting, etc). We have definitely gone back to it several times to adjust for unrealistic expectations on our part or to see where we could perhaps cut costs. If we hadn't, we probably could have gotten into some serious trouble. Not to mention, I don't know how you will be able to figure out how many guests you can afford and at what price per head if you don't know what your budget is. It doesn't have to be SUPER strict if you have wiggle room. But you should at least have a general idea for each item so you at least know what you're looking at.

    Good luck and let us know if you need more advice on how to make a budget - I'm sure most of us here have done it!
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  • I agree with everything vonclancy said. You definitely need a budget. I had a set budget and then realized everything was lot more than what I thought it would be, and more and more people were added to the guest list, and it got crazy expensive super fast. So if you aren't paying attention to it, you'll probably spend more than if you were paying attention and could watch where you are spending.

    If your mom is planning to help at all, then yes, she does have a say in the things she is assisting with. If you don't want her to have a say- don't take her money. If she's not spending any money on the wedding, then stop telling her wedding stuff!
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  • Definitely stop planning for the moment and sit down with your FI and work out your budget, guest list, and what kind of wedding you can afford based on those two factors. Even if she's not paying, your mom may be worried and trying to save you money because you have not set a budget. Once you have done so, it might be wise to keep what you share with her to a minimum if she constantly voices negative opinions.
  • Thanks u guys for answering :) I will definitely sit down tonight and put everything on a budget.
  • edited November 2012
    Another tip from my passive-aggressive side. If you don't want to blatantly ask your mom for money, once you and your FI sit down and set that budget, you can formulate responses to her input:

    Mom: Honey, I think this flower would look better for your centerpieces
    You: I don't mind that flower, mom, but this flower will give us more bang for our buck since we're trying to stick to a $_____ budget.

    I had to do this with my FMIL a LOT.  She's used to having almost unlimited funds to host various parties and since FFIL lost his job a little over a year ago, she's had to cut back.  She has a great vision(she was a graphic artist and art teacher) but doesn't really know how to respect a budget.

    I get uncomfortable talking about money but since I've dropped these hints to my mom and FMIL, they've backed off a little and even offered to help out here and there, when they can.  Neither one of them can afford to help so any little monetary or laborious input that will save us money is greatly appreciated :-)

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  • I would sit with your FI and decide what you guys are comfortable with spending. I am actually using TK budget tracker thing. Mostly to know what is the 'average' cost that I would be spending on certain items.

    As for asking someone for money - you're never supposed to do that, unless they've offered it. But for most situations that I have heard about the conversations go something like "hey parents, I know you have always said you wanted to help me out with this wedding, well the time has come so whatcha gonna do". BUT money comes with strings, so if your mom does help she gets a say! Good luck!
  • When you're budgeting use a tool with pre-made lists. It's a lot easier to look at a huge list and decide you don't want this item, rather than trying to think of everything you might need from scratch. You WILL forget something the latter way.
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