Wedding Woes

Not inviting my moms family

Livia1024Livia1024 member
First Comment
edited January 2017 in Wedding Woes
My fiance and I really wanted a small wedding. Our guest list keeps growing and growing and most of the people on the list are family members. We have invited everyone from my fiance's family, everyone from my dad's side, everyone from my moms [step]dad's side as these are the people I have come to love and claim as my mother's side of the family. The problem with my moms blood relatives is that I never got to know them, I was never really around them and the few times I was, they made some pretty racist remarks to my sisters and i. I wouldn't recognize them outside and don't really know their names. My mom is upset that I do not intend on inviting them (with the exception of about 3 or 4). She even told them that I did not plan on inviting them. I asked her what she suppose I do as she has told me we should keep it small and we already have almost 200 ppl on our list. I don't want to upset her, but adding 50 more ppl(who I don't really know) would be even more expensive.I'm not trying to hurt feelings, but I've cried over this and am losing sleep....what should I do :/

Re: Not inviting my moms family

  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK member
    Eighth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    My fiance and I really wanted a small wedding. Our guest list keeps growing and growing and most of the people on the list are family members. We have invited everyone from my fiance's family, everyone from my dad's side, everyone from my moms [step]dad's side as these are the people I have come to love and claim as my mother's side of the family. The problem with my moms blood relatives is that I never got to know them, I was never really around them and the few times I was, they made some pretty racist remarks to my sisters and i. I wouldn't recognize them outside and don't really know their names. My mom is upset that I do not intend on inviting them (with the exception of about 3 or 4). She even told them that I did not plan on inviting them. I asked her what she suppose I do as she has told me we should keep it small and we already have almost 200 ppl on our list. I don't want to upset her, but adding 50 more ppl(who I don't really know) would be even more expensive.I'm not trying to hurt feelings, but I've cried over this and am losing sleep....what should I do :/
    Ok, firstly is Mum contributing to this? 

    I'm not trying to split hairs here, but when you say they said racist remarks to you and your sister, do you mean they attack you because of your race? Did you ever talk to your mum about being racially abused by them? I'm mixed race, and if my dad's white family said anything to me or my brother/sister, he would be furious and cut them out of our lives. How did your mum handle that situation? 

    So I think your mum is a bit of a pot-stirer to the people that aren't invited. She is probably embarrassed that her family are bigots and subconsciously try make it nbd. If she isn't contributing (and if you can), I would make a list of the 50 people. Immediately cut out anyone who has been racist. Then see if there are a few reasonable circles you could invite (her siblings, a favourite cousin, and her aunt, etc)- maybe about 10 people. You don't HAVE to do this, but compromise is a nice idea. But when you decide, stick to it (you are being nice here, you could say no) and don't let her wiggle and manipulate you. Be prepared for the histrionics - she sounds like a drama llama. 

    If she is contributing, unfortunately, she does get a say in the guest list, and I would say that a reasonable about of her family could come, bar anyone who is a racist. 

    In my book, being racially abused by someone is in the same circle as being physically attacked by them, which automatically cuts them and their SO off the list. 
    charlotte989875SP29
  • Livia1024Livia1024 member
    First Comment
    edited January 2017
    She blows the racism off as shes made racially charged commets to us as well..my sisters and i don't have the best relationship with her. But I'll ask her to make a list of her cousins she'd really like to have there, I think 10-15 is reasonable 
  • LondonLisaLondonLisa London, UK member
    Eighth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    She blows the racism off as shes made racially charged commets to us as well..my sister and i don't have the best relationship with her. But I'll ask her to make a list of her cousins she'd really like to have there, I think 10-15 is reasonable 
    Ok, I completely change my answer.

    I think you need to take the wedding out of it and work on this bigger issue with your mum with setting boundaries.  Could you do a few therapy sessions with her/your sister? I think you need to spell out that you will not tolerate racism, if she says something racist you will leave, and you will not allow any unsupervised visits with any potential grandchildren. 

    Even an if she says it over Christmas dinner, your sister and you should calmly say 'we don't tolerate racism',  get up and walk out. Or hang up the phone etc. If she says it at the wedding, security will ask her to leave.  She will very quickly learn she needs to keep her mouth shut if she wants to see you/any grandchildren. I certainly wouldn't want little ears around such hatred. 

    As for your wedding, return any money she has given you. That way you can control the guest list. I wouldn't invite anyone from her family. 

    Actions have conveniences, and since she chooses to enable/promote racism, you can choose to not be present. 


    Livia1024cowgirl8238OliveOilsMom
  • This is what my dad told me...the problem is that I am a pushover lol. Just want to keep the peace. I'm going to try to have another conversation with her about it, cuz it's definitely bothering me
  • edited January 2017
    How is your Mom supposed to know just how much this bothers you (as it should!), if you don't spell out for her and stand up to her when she blows it off? I understand wanting to 'keep the peace' but tolerating racism isn't keeping the peace it's allowing it to continue, in your presence. 

    I know that's easier said than done but she's not going to change her behavior unless your draw some boundaries and enforce them. Like LondonLisa said if you tell her to stop and she doesn't hang up, leave, walk to a different room. 

    And unless she is paying you don't need to invite racsists, especially ones you don't know, see, or engage with to your wedding. 
    Livia1024cowgirl8238sparklepants41
  • Obviously there's two main things going on here - 1) deep issues with your mom - I won't go there, because I'm not a therapist and I don't know you, but I'm sure you know there's work to do...and 2) who to invite to your wedding.

    Unless your mom is paying for the wedding, no way in hell would I invite these people. You don't know them. You aren't close with them. They've made racist remarks to you and your sister multiple times. If your mom IS contributing, have a conversation with her about size (200 isn't even "small") and how you barely know these people. Ask if you can invite just a couple "must-haves". Good luck.
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    charlotte989875cowgirl8238sparklepants41short+sassy
  • Livia1024 said:
    My fiance and I really wanted a small wedding. Our guest list keeps growing and growing and most of the people on the list are family members. We have invited everyone from my fiance's family, everyone from my dad's side, everyone from my moms [step]dad's side as these are the people I have come to love and claim as my mother's side of the family. The problem with my moms blood relatives is that I never got to know them, I was never really around them and the few times I was, they made some pretty racist remarks to my sisters and i. I wouldn't recognize them outside and don't really know their names. My mom is upset that I do not intend on inviting them (with the exception of about 3 or 4). She even told them that I did not plan on inviting them. I asked her what she suppose I do as she has told me we should keep it small and we already have almost 200 ppl on our list. I don't want to upset her, but adding 50 more ppl(who I don't really know) would be even more expensive.I'm not trying to hurt feelings, but I've cried over this and am losing sleep....what should I do :/

    A few questions: 

    1) Who is paying for this wedding?  Anyone who contributes financially gets a say in the wedding planning.  This applies to the guest list but can also apply to other things like venue, food/alcohol served, entertainment for the evening and even goes into crazy land like decorations, other vendors etc...

    2) What kind of wedding do you and your FI want?  You say you want a small wedding but 200 people is quite large to most people.  You do not need to invite every single person in the family.  I would start by making two or three lists.  Start with the VIP's, the people you absolutely cannot get married without.  Then make the "Must-Have List"  This is everyone that you really want to invite because you are close to them.  This will also include the "must-have's" of anyone who is financially contributing to the wedding.  Third is the "Like to Have" List.  This is the more fringe people that you would like to include but maybe you aren't as close as you used to be.  Once you settle on a guest count and budget you will see where you fall and include people accordingly.

    Livia1024 said:
    She blows the racism off as shes made racially charged commets to us as well..my sisters and i don't have the best relationship with her. But I'll ask her to make a list of her cousins she'd really like to have there, I think 10-15 is reasonable 

    3) Why do you allow your (blood) mom to be racist in front of you?  How does your FI feel about this too?  This is a big deal and a much bigger problem than your wedding...this will affect you and your future children should you plan to have any.  I would consider seeking out some help in learning how to set appropriate boundaries here.  Problems like these won't go away overnight!

    Livia1024 said:
    This is what my dad told me...the problem is that I am a pushover lol. Just want to keep the peace. I'm going to try to have another conversation with her about it, cuz it's definitely bothering me

    4) Why do you want to continue to be a "people-pleaser" if it keeps you up at night crying and adds unneeded stress in your life?  No is not a bad word, and while many people struggle with this (myself included!) you will need to learn when to say no! 

    I am not trying to pick on you or anything OP, I just posted these questions as more of a self-reflection type of thing.  I understand how difficult it is to deal with a loved one that doesn't respect you or your choices, especially when all you want is to maintain peace.  If you take nothing else away from this, please understand that your mom being racist towards you is not okay! You need to set healthy boundaries with her...I think once you do the rest of the wedding stuff will just 'click' into place.

    OliveOilsMomsparklepants41short+sassymrsconn23
  • short+sassyshort+sassy member
    Seventh Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited January 2017

    PPs have given great responses, especially about the racial issues.

    You say that you and your FI want a small wedding.  I'm going to give you advice on that, similar to @cowgirl8238.  HAVE a small wedding.  And don't let other people sway you all.  Invite just immediate family and a few close friends.  By immediate family, I mean parents/grandparents/siblings and their SOs.  That's it.  No aunts/uncles/cousins.  Or just no cousins.  There is nothing wrong with that!  And you're still inviting in circles...or I should say "not" inviting within circles.

    Sure, Aunt Mary and Uncle Joe might be disappointed they won't see you get married, but they really can't be too offended if none of the other aunts/uncles are invited either (and they'll know).

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    cowgirl8238
  • I would not invite these additional guests.

    It sounds like your Mom is not contributing to the wedding- then good, she does not get a say in the guest list.

    I would not invite anyone to your wedding who you are not close with and do not have a relationship with. I would DEFINITELY not invite anyone who had been personally rude to me or my fiance!

    Agreed that if you want a small wedding-plan a small wedding! 200 guests is not small. No one is owed an invitation to your wedding. Of course you must always invite a guest's SO, and it's wise to invite in circles, but you are not required to invite every person you've ever known or every friend your parents may have.

    I like the creation of a "Must Have" and "Like to Have" guest list. Where do these numbers get you? If your "Must Have" list is the small wedding you'd like, stick to that list.
    short+sassycowgirl8238
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