Feeling stressed out over wedding politics

I'm getting married next year and we have a guest list of about 125 So far. We can't have many children at our venue without hiring a crèche as stated in our contract so already we have an issue not allowing children as this further inflates the cost of an already expensive day.

We are also facing some emotional blackmail and arguments with our parents because we don't want to invite partners of people who we've never met. for my parents this is a problem because I don't want to invite my cousins partners because I don't know them, I don't even get on with my cousins really  (they didn't even congratulate me on getting engaged and last time we were in the same room together some didn't even come over and speak to me) they all are in and out of relationships fairly often and we just feel that adding all their partners would add at least £1000 to the overall cost of our wedding. My parents are annoyed because all my friends will be bringing partners but this is because im  actually friends with my friends partners or if a friend doesn't know anyone else. (Whereas my cousins all have each other). I'm being emotionally blackmailed by my parents saying they dont feel part of the day and that they can't talk to us (but actually that's not the case it's just we don't agree with them on everything they think should happen) - how do I get through this? Part  me can't stand the drama and considers throwing money I don't really have so children and partners can come (adding 37 to our guest list) part of me just feels this isn't fair and i don't want to back down on something because this is supposed to be about us but it feels like it's becoming about everyone but us. What do I do?


  • gill17gill17 Posts: 568 New bride

    This is not the easy answer but in my opinion you need to stick to your guns and say no. I had 4 people at my wedding whom I'd never met before, total guest list was 30 adults btw- almost all immediate family-and its something that still grates on me.  You only want people there who are special to you, and if you back down on this you may find yourself backing down on other stuff. If you arent close to them or see them often or if they dont speak to you then sorry but no, no chance of an invite.

    Could a possible compromise be inviting some of them to evening do, or would that make things more complicated? 

    I think you should calmly explain your reasons for not having them and say to your parents that you would like them to respect your wishes, this is important to you. If they are paying for or contributing to wedding then they may feel they have a say though, but i still think you should put your foot down and say no. Dont give in to pressure, its your day and you are entitled to have the day who want with the people you want.

    Best of luck, it is tough but keep your eyes on the prize, think of the big picture! In time this stress will be long forgotten, but the memories and photos of your day will last forever!

  • wed172Bwed172B Posts: 1,258

    You need to stick to your guns! Make it clear to your parents that you are inviting who you want and not who they want. If you don't know the partners then you shouldnt have to invite them. me and my partner wrote our guest list ourselves, without input so that we could have who we wanted. Be strong :)

  • Just explain that they can talk to you about anything but that the guestlist is none of their concern. You have to start limiting numbers and you have done it in a way that everyone will have someone there that they know. ... can't stand people butting in... your day, your way!

  • She who pays...gets to invite!

    If it's really really important to your parents that cousin Fred's girlfriend comes, then they can pay for the extra plate. Xx

  • Stick to your guns. If you give way on this, it will be the first of a very long list of concessions you'll be expected to make. X

  • I guess it depends on who is paying? If I paid everything I would expect to choose mg one guest list but as my parents contributed a bit I would feel bad not inviting people they wanted there. If I felt that strongly I wouldn't have accepted their contribution. I had a wedding for 75 guests and wouldn't have dreamed of not inviting people's partnets even the ones I'd never met, but I did say no children which I thought was a reasonable compromise. All my guests were all-day but as someone else suggested maybe adding the extras to the evening guests (I felt you're having any) might be a good compromise? Good luck anyway whatever you decide - weddings can be tricky but try to enjoy it and remember the reason you're getting married! :) 

  • If you are not inviting their significant other you should not be inviting them at all.  It is totally rude to invite someone without their partner.  I am aghast that you would think this  would not be a concern.  No wonder your parents are stressing!

  • I 100 % disagree TeamJamiesonLowe. Aghast?! Get a grip!

    I have been to two weddings without my partner (as he didn't know the couples well). One of which was fine because I was with my family, and the other I didn't know anyone - but you know what, I didn't mind either. It wasn't about me. Each time I would rather be invited than not, and would be upset to not get an invite because of this.



  • gill17gill17 Posts: 568 New bride
    TeamJamiesonLowe wrote (see post):

    If you are not inviting their significant other you should not be inviting them at all.  It is totally rude to invite someone without their partner.  I am aghast that you would think this  would not be a concern.  No wonder your parents are stressing!

    The term partner or significant other is key here. A boyfriend of weeks? Months? Years? Living together? Engaged? The OP said they are in and out of relationships fairly easily, that doesn't sound like a significant other to me. Pippa Middleton had a 'no ring no bring' policy which meant that her future brother in law attended alone! 

    Stick to your guns, channel Pippa lol

  • MrsLMTMrsLMT Posts: 3,830

    We had a rule, the couple had to be together for at least a 12 month before our invites were sent out. As it is no one has started a new relationship so we haven't had to worry. If someone starts a new relationship in the next six months the new partner will be invited for the evening celebration.


  • My cousin's partners were only invited if they were married or lived together and fortunately no one questioned it at all. I had one cousin ask if her bf could come to the evening which I allowed as they had just moved in together but hadn't at the time of invites. I made it clear to her how I had original made my invite decisions, mainly so her younger sister wouldn't also ask and for it to start spiralling.

    All of my work colleague invited the the evening came without partners invited, so I don't think it has to be a rule where whole couples must come together. The ladies all came in a big group and had a great time, exactly as I had seen them do at other work weddings in the past.

  • Wibs77Wibs77 Posts: 414

    We have invited plus ones for everyone in a relationship plus children even if we didn't know them. The same for the evening. One of my friends husbands is not coming as he is staying to look after the kids and she is coming with other friends. Apart from that 3 children are not coming as their parents want to drink and enjoy themselves. 2 of h2bs guests asked to bring their oh's and he said yes. He even wanted to give plus ones to the guests that were definitely single but as they were my friends and I knew they would be happy coming alone he compromised on this. Everyone has an idea in their head of what the etiquette is and that is your parents idea. 

    Maybe you could sit down and show them how much it will affect the budget? 


  • Mimi8Mimi8 Posts: 316 New bride

    The days of inviting everyone's partner are gone thank god ! Everyone is entitled to have people they know and love present on their big day and it is just too expensive to cater for people for all comers ! Your cousins will be fine together . Do you think your parents are not aware of how much things cost ,  some older folks haven't been near wedding planning since their big day !! Agree they may need a chat re costs but stick to what you want x


  • Ashley72Ashley72 Posts: 1,136 New bride

    I think you need to explain simply, politely but firmly that you're not prepared to compromise on this aspect. Perhaps add up how much it would cost in real terms (additional favours. drinks, invitations etc as well as the meal) and explain that you simply can't afford them at this late stage. Going down this route might cause less offence than just trying to explain that you don't really want them there!


  • AlisonMaryAlisonMary Posts: 210

    I think the requirement for inviting partners completely depends on the couple. 

    For example, I invited a lady from work. She wouldn't have known anyone at the wedding other than me, so she got a plus one. And she would have got that regardless of how long she was with her partner, or regardless of who she chose to bring. 

    I invited 4 friends from my old job. We are all really close. All 4 were invited to the day, with no plus one. But I told them they could bring their OHs to the evening if they wished. As it turned out, the OHs didn't really fancy it, and the girls wanted a girly reunion, so they came alone. 

    In your case - cousins - again, I would say it depends. Are you a close family? Would all your cousins sit together? Or with your aunties and uncles?

    If they are in long term relationships, engaged or married, I personally think their OHs should be invited.

    You mention that you have never met some of them, or that they didn't congratulate you when you got engaged. I can give perspective on both sides here. When me and Joe were engaged, we were invited to his cousin's wedding. I had never met the couple and so didn't congratulate them on their engagement. However, I went to the wedding, had a ball. Myself and the bride got talking. She added me on Facebook. We spoke/messaged quite a bit and now we are quite close! And they came to our wedding! 

  • You will never please everyone with a wedding, so best to do what you want otherwise it will all  be about pleasing everyone else!

    You need to decide and stick with it, if guests have no long term partner or live together then you do not need to invite them.

    I'm under pressure at the moment from my SIL 2b her son is just 18 and been with a gf for 3 weeks and she has asked if she can come to the whole wedding as the boy will get the hump!!! My answer is an absolute no! We've never met her and they're both 17/18, not acceptable on any level.  Especially when we have bumped family off the day to the evening. 

    Be strong and forceful this is your day no one else's!

    Good luck :)

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