MIL organising honeymoon

(203 Posts)
Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:29:50

I've namchanged for this as i suspect I may be being a bit bridezilla so would like to know your opinions.

I'm getting married at the end of August and a couple of months ago my soon to be MIL told us that she would pay for our honeymoon as a wedding present - she also said she would choose where we go and it would be a surprise. We had to choose five places in Europe and she would choose one.

Apparently this is a family tradition and although I know it is well meant and very generous I'm really unhappy about it.

My reasons are that we had an idea where we wanted to go before she made the offer and it wasn't in Europe. Secondly, and this might sound a bit strange but I think it would kind of feel like she was on honeymoon with us. i think a honeymoon is a very personal thing where the couple spend time alone away from families. So to me this it seems odd for my in-laws to choose where we're going.

But the main problem is that my finace let slip that she had told him where we are going and it turns out it's Lanzarote! This wasn't one of the five places we chose and apparently its because she couldn't get Mallorca (one of the places we DID choose)within budget. I went on a girls holiday to Lanzarote a few years ago and my image of it is definitely not that of a honeymoon destination.

What on Earth do I do without causing major upset just before I join the family. Am I being unreasonable?

Jinsei Thu 28-Feb-13 21:34:35

Yanbu - I wouldn't like that either. Do you know if she has already booked/paid for the trip. What does your fiancé think? Can he talk to her and take the blame?

Or could you just go to keep them happy and have your "real" honeymoon at a later date?

BridgetBidet Thu 28-Feb-13 21:37:16

Is it all booked? If it is and she's paid for it I think the only way you might get away with it is if you tell her you're going to Lanzarote then quietly slip off to the Maldives instead and keep it quiet so you don't hurt her feelings. Take a few generic pics in the bar and on the beach and tell her it was lovely.

If it isn't booked tell her that you're touched but had your heart set on somewhere else and would she mind dreadfully just contributing towards the cost?

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:38:35

Yes booked and paid for. DF is desperately trying to keep the peace - which means avoiding the issue at the moment. I'm not pushing too hard a the moment as I don't want to rock the boat, plus I feel like i'm being a bit spoilt.

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:40:12

Yes Jinsei i'm thinking real honeymoon later...

SilverClementine Thu 28-Feb-13 21:40:39

Treat it as a free holiday and then book the honeymoon of your dreams later in the year, that way you get two grin

KirstyJC Thu 28-Feb-13 21:41:58

I can understand why you are upset and disappointed, but I think it is too late to do anything now - the time to say no was when she first asked you.

I think you should just go to Lanzarote for the honeymoon and then book yourself something else later - maybe for your first anniversary?

diddl Thu 28-Feb-13 21:42:24

Well tbh, I think that if you've already accepted, you.ll just have to put up with it.

Best way to have exactly what you want is to book & pay yourself.

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:42:47

I know Silver that's exactly the approach I should take but I feel like we'll only get one honeymoon and I want it to be after the wedding.

I'm being silly aren't I?

aldiwhore Thu 28-Feb-13 21:43:59

Go, enjoy the free holiday, save up and go somewhere stunning for your first anniversary.

I KNOW Honeymoons have become this 'best holiday EVER' modern tradition but after being married 15 years and still waiting for that 'best holiday ever' we've had some fantastic holidays with each other in places that were way down the list of ideal destinations. Our 'honeymoon' was one night in a haunted hotel (didn't realise when we booked and I WAS a cynic) and two nights in Alton Towers - not exactly a bride's dream, but we have some great memories.

I think even if it turns out to be a shit hotel in a horrible resort, you and your new husband can make some memories there that will entertain you for years to come (some of our worst holiday experiences have provided the most 'dining out' on over the years).

YANBU but a 'dream honeymoon' is quite a modern invention.

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:44:20

kirsty she didn't ask me, she told me. I didn't say anything as I didn't want to be rude. Should have done. sad

SpicyPear Thu 28-Feb-13 21:45:05

Oh gosh, YANBU or precious, but I think the error was agreeing to this weird idea in the first place. It would be really out of order to object at this stage.

Not silly. YANBU I'd worry about this setting the tone for the future.

I'd hate this, been there & hated it. Nothing like Mallorca!
What a shit curios family tradition.

SpicyPear Thu 28-Feb-13 21:46:46

If it makes you feel better, my honeymoon was cheap as we were skint and we've since had much "better" holidays on paper but they were not as special smile

piratecat Thu 28-Feb-13 21:47:37

why didn't she confirm lanzarote was ok, as it wasn't ON your list.

it would piss me right off.

Yfronts Thu 28-Feb-13 21:48:42

Well just go and enjoy it but then on your fist anniversary go to the place you really want to go. Will be something to look forward to.

loubielou31 Thu 28-Feb-13 21:49:52

We had a "minimoon" to Paris for three or four nights straight after our wedding in the August and our "Honeymoon" the New Zealand in December for three weeks. We delayed because we wanted to go away and get good weather so waited for the NZ early summer.
You could do something similar, and no boat rocking required, (just means you'll have to find all the money yourselves)

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:51:17

piratecat it's all about the surprise - i don't like surprises.

I think I would just say as tactfully as possible that you have been to Lanzarote and it's not where you imagined your honeymoon and say thanks but no thanks, it's a nice gesture but why the hell she didn't book somewhere you would like is weird.

HollyBerryBush Thu 28-Feb-13 21:52:12

Its free, take it with good grace and do your own holiday next year.

Nanny0gg Thu 28-Feb-13 21:56:16

I can see why you're a bit upset, and it might be worth you having a chat with your soon-to-be DH about being a bit firmer with his mother (are there any more 'surprises' in the pipeline?)

However, as the 'real' purpose of the Honeymoon is now a faint memory, I'd just treat this as a lovely free holiday and either have the one you want for your first anniversary, or use the money saved for something else.

squeakytoy Thu 28-Feb-13 21:57:04

I would say, as someone who has visited Lanzarote dozens of times, it is a beautiful island and has some really lovely places to stay and visit, and you are pretty much guaranteed fabulous weather.

Puerto del Carmen main strip is very busy at night time with clubbers and bar crawlers, but if you are not into that sort of thing, then just avoid that area, as everywhere else is peaceful, the restaurants are excellent (if you go for traditional rather than Irish or British).

A holiday is what you make of it, and you are likely to see it in a very different way if you are with your husband rather than on a girls jolly.

I am sure it will not be anywhere near as bad as you are imagining it to be.

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 21:58:38

Yes. I guess we should just book something else now so we've got something more 'personal' to look forward to.

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:01:05

nanny if by real purpose you're talking about consumation - yes it will have a real purpose for us! [ blush]

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:03:03

This is why it's doubly weird for MIL to be booking it for us (although she'll have no idea about that (I hope!)

Whoknowswhocares Thu 28-Feb-13 22:03:03

Nothing you can do now so might as well make the best of it.

I suggest planning an extra special trip to mark your first anniversary instead. Planned, chosen and paid for yourselves!


crypes Thu 28-Feb-13 22:19:42

I reckon their pulling your leg. I reckon its a surprise your mil and fiance are booking up. Somewhere really flash and exotic and their teasing you saying its lanzagrottie

ENormaSnob Thu 28-Feb-13 22:19:59

I actually find it very controlling that someone is taking charge of your honeymoon. More so as they have not even taken account of where you want to go.

I would be very pissed off, especially as I loathed lanzarote.

Maybe there's an extra surprise and your ils are joining you shock

PurpleBlossom Thu 28-Feb-13 22:20:27


How about you and DH get on the flight to Lanzorote, take a picture of you together outside the airport (to send to MIL) then get back on a plane to somewhere decent!


in that case you won't know where you've been anyway. you'll never see outside the hotel room door wink enjoy yourself

GettingObsessive Thu 28-Feb-13 22:21:21

I can understand why "oh well, go on another honeymoon later" wouldn't cut the mustard. Because, well, it won't really be your honeymoon then, will it?

A very difficult position, OP, I feel for you.

Roseformeplease Thu 28-Feb-13 22:23:06

YANBU bi put, if there is any holiday that doesn't matter, it is the honeymoon. You are knackered, just want to sleep and relax and talk about the wedding. Lots of Lanzarote is gorgeous and not at all built up or full of lager louts. Save your money for a dream holiday later and call that your honeymoon. Spend your time in Lanzarote planning it.

Next time, just say no. My sister insisted on booking my other sister a honeymoon as a wedding present. It was a way of exerting control and she forced them into dates, and a place, they did not want. They always regret saying yes, but they did say yes!

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:23:55

Hells bells ENorma don't say that!

Aren't some people weird, and controlling.

HollyBerryBush Thu 28-Feb-13 22:30:06

Traditionally its the grooms job to book the honeymoon, or in this case his staff ie MIL!

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:33:11

If DF was booking us a surprise honeymoon i'd be thrilled, but this feels wrong.
The responses here are interesting and reassuring. I posted this same thing on a wedding message board and I was mostly told I was being unbelieveably spolit!

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:34:53

She's not generally controlling. I think the person who started this family tradition definitely was ( of MIL ironically) and it's just kind of carried on.

SnotMeReally Thu 28-Feb-13 22:35:15

I thought exactly the same as ENorma

then again I know someone who, deciding they wanted a small private wedding abroad with no family, made the mistake of telling the parents where it was and them turning up as a lovely surprise OMG!!

I think this is a very odd offer OP - would only be a truly generous no strings attached gift if you could choose and just let them pay

this reeks of controlling behaviour and if you dont put a stop to it now you have years ahead of doing what SHE expects/wants/demands/thinks is best for you both

either that or its a veiled slur on you that she thinks thats your type of holiday - though I admit to never having been I am having visions of TVs "Benidorm"

Kat101 Thu 28-Feb-13 22:36:48

I'm a bit scared for you. Mallorca isn't exactly expensive in comparison to the rest of europe. Can you find out more details of what exactly she's booked (picturing 1 star budget flat miles from the beach) sad

suprised by that. the wedding boards I have seen seem to be. chock full of insane people who think planning wedding 5years in advance and dictating the guests contraceptive methods to ensure it's their special dayis fine

ZenNudist Thu 28-Feb-13 22:36:57

When are you getting married? Lots of good tropical destinations to go to at another time of year. Providing you're within 6m of your wedding date tour operators will treat you as honeymooners & upgrade your suite, give you freebies etc.

I had a 'wedding moon' - week in the same country as we got married away from friends & family, then tropical holiday honeymoon 3-4 m later when the summer started in my chosen exotic resort!

I've known lots of people have summer weddings then 6m later trip to Maldives or Australia when better time to go.

That way you can have your (wedding) cake & eat it!

IDontDoIroning Thu 28-Feb-13 22:37:44

Can't you go along to the travel agent with the booking details and transfer the holiday to somewhere you want to go to. You will probably have to pay some kind of re booking fee and whatever your choice might cost on top of whatever she had paid,

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:38:51

I know hairy totally the opposite of what I expected which is why I posted on here too to make sure I wasn't going mad!

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 22:41:48

I did think about that idont but chickened out in case she still had to make more payments and would find out when she went in to pay the balance

LentilAsAnything Thu 28-Feb-13 22:42:11

I would have hated this!!! I loved planning our honeymoon, and it was brilliant. No one would have been able to plan something so personal so well as ourselves. It was, however, seven months after our wedding, so I would do as suggested above, and treat the Lanzagrotty holiday as a minimoon, and plan your dream honeymoon for either your first Christmas away, or your one year anniversary, or some other date.
Hopefully they are pulling your leg though and you are going somewhere nicer. But still, I'd plan my own big trip, anywhere in the world, not restricted to Europe (though Europe is fine!) for a later date. Enjoy your wedding and your minimoon! smile

DewDr0p Thu 28-Feb-13 22:43:44

OP you are definitely not going mad. This is weird controlling behaviour on the part of your MIL.

It's weird enough that she's doing this at all. But then she asked for five (FIVE!) suggestions of places you would like to go and then booked a totally different one?!!

Perhaps not one for now but I think in the near future you are going to need to have a serious chat with your df about how it's going to be.

SnotMeReally Thu 28-Feb-13 22:45:17

if you dont want to do her minimoon and book your own special honeymoon later then dont - the memories will last forever and so may the bitterness

this is about you as a couple and not her
MILs should not be choosing anything IMO

Granitetopping Thu 28-Feb-13 22:46:08

When you get the tickets go to the travel agent and change if you can. I wouldn't be surprised if the whole family join you on honeymoon otherwise. Can you imagine it - first day at breakfast -SURPRISE!!

GinandChocolate Thu 28-Feb-13 22:47:57

If you aren't getting married until August then surely the booking can be changed. I would say something now because if you don't then you are setting a very unhealthy precedent and will end up doing things you don't like to keep the peace for the rest of your marriage. Your fiancé must have a view on whether he wants his future wife to be happy or his mother. Based in my experience his decision on this is important.

ladymariner Thu 28-Feb-13 22:50:46

I'm obviously going totally against the grain here but I think YABU. If you didn't want your inlaws to do this then you should have said so at the time. As you didn't, then I think you'll just have to go along with it and use the money you would have spent on your choice of honeymoon on a fantastic first anniversary holiday to the place of your choice.

And I'm not a MIL sympathiser, hell would have frozen over before I let mine choose our honeymoon.....hell is actually where she'd like to send me!!!! grin

5Foot5 Thu 28-Feb-13 22:53:09

I think YAB a bit U

Ok so it might not be the destination of your dreams but at the end of the day it is just a holiday. You have the rest of your married life to go to all those places you might have dreamt of. After the stress of a wedding you might just be ready to relax and chill out anywhere.

True - MIL booking the honeymoon might be unusual but if it is a family tradition it is not such a bad one. For the sake of future good relations I would go along with it for good grace and consider that the money we had saved for not paying for our own honeymoon could be used for that dream tripanother year.

SnotMeReally Thu 28-Feb-13 22:54:24

ladym - but she hasn't got what she agreed to - she agreed to MIL paying for one of their 5 choices - so it would still be somewhere they wanted to go, but an actual surprise which place till nearer the time - this is NOT what they have got. They dont want the place she has booked. It was not even suggested to them as a possible alternative to guage reaction - just booked, no wonder OP is feeling a bit down about it all.

Its like asking for a scarf / bag / perfume for christmas and gettting a box of roses instead

SnotMeReally Thu 28-Feb-13 22:56:26

Gin said - I would say something now because if you don't then you are setting a very unhealthy precedent and will end up doing things you don't like to keep the peace for the rest of your marriage.

^^I agree 100% with this!

sicutlilium Thu 28-Feb-13 22:57:11

OP, are you sure the booking has been made? Wouldn't it have required your soon-to-be-DH to have given his mother your passport number? Assuming it's got that far, she may also have made some assumptions about the name you intend to use when you're married and booked you in as Mrs Lanzagrotty rather than Ms Exotic-Destination, which might result in you being unable to board...

Lanzagrotty Thu 28-Feb-13 23:01:38

Oooh gosh no. There's been no mention of passport numbers. I'm not planning on changng my passport in time for the honeymoon. My DF isn't in on it. I think his mum just mentioned the destination to him as it wasn't what we'd originally chosen and he just said yeah fine. He says it doesn't matter as long as we're together - very sweet but doesn't help any!

Jelly15 Thu 28-Feb-13 23:02:01

I think it is not on and if I was the MIL I would have just given you the money for you to choose, plan and book your own. However, it is done now and it will ruin the whole wedding if you stir it all up now. Put it down to a lesson learned, enjoy your free holiday and, as someone else said, save up for your real honeymoon on your 1st annviversery, so you will still have something to look foward to after the wedding and holiday are over.

Now you will be prepared for the future and don't let your MIL get control again

buzzy1 Thu 28-Feb-13 23:02:05

Speaking from my experience I made the mistake of letting my MIL pay for our wedding photos, so she she saw it as her prerogative to choose the photos that went into our wedding album..I ended up doing a DIY album in the end as wasn't happy with her choices!. And it didn't stop there, she lives in the country where we were getting married so DH gave in to her wish that the wedding list be from a department store over there, meaning that she even went as far as choosing our wedding list, and for some reason I let her!! After nearly 10 years of marriage it still makes me mad that i let her control so many aspects of our special day, and I think it's probably affected my feelings towards her. And its affected my memories of the a long winded way of saying don't let her do it!

RIZZ0 Thu 28-Feb-13 23:12:40

Yanbu. I don't think you're being unreasonable at any stage, as you only agreed to this, albeit begrudgingly, because you felt assured it would be one of five places you were happy to go to.

Lanzagrotty is not on that list. Controlling behaviour on her part and personally I think if not in this case, then certainly in others situations that may crop up soon, you should calmly and kindly assert yourself and let her know her place.

P.s. if you do end up going, there's a nice restaurant called Ikarus you should try. Lovely food and wine, we hid out there for most of the week as we didn't really enjoy the rest of the island and the weather was rubbish (winter break).

Christelle2207 Thu 28-Feb-13 23:16:53

Given that she's chosen somewhere not on your list, (and you can say you've been before and didn't like it) you have every right to make a fuss. Get your dp to sort it. I never would have agreed to this tbh.

PopeBenedictsP45 Thu 28-Feb-13 23:19:23

I don't think you're being silly - I would be really upset.

Is there anyway to refund the tickets, or pay extra to have the destination changed? Apologies if you've already answered this question.


MyDarlingClementine Thu 28-Feb-13 23:21:40

" Save your money for a dream holiday later and call that your honeymoon. Spend your time in Lanzarote planning it."

I found this ^ hillarious!

i love that its taken as a given that all you can do there is plan how to get out of it - and yet its a really popular destination.

surely there must be some more upmarket part and stunning hotel etc...that no one has seen on thier younger girly hols?

I def think they are pulling your leg btw.

Doha Thu 28-Feb-13 23:34:53

I hated Lanzarote when l went with the family 3 years ago, can't think of any nice thing to say about it. The best part was the flight home.
Wild horses would not drag me back there. OP if you really don't want to go--and really it is not a honeymoon destination-ask your DF to man up and speak to his mum. She has been VVU not booking one of your European destinations.

My MILtobe made me the same offer... And then turned up at my house with all those 'holiday for £10' vouchers from the sun and told me to pick my holiday park, and not to worry about travelling there as they (she and fil) would drive us anywhere.

I am normally polite and gracious but I couldn't disguise the look of horror on my face....

and I reckon she would have turned up as a surprise as well

Snazzynewyear Thu 28-Feb-13 23:41:47

Definitely find out what has been booked so far, and look at the possibility of cancelling it and - though you will lose some money - transferring the rest of the credit to a place you will enjoy. I would sort that and and then, in a few months' time, come up with some story about how the travel agent contacted you to say there'd been some disaaster where the hotel has had to close suddenly so they have offered you a choice of other destinations instead. So you've ended up with Mallorca after all, how funny, eh? grin

I've been and it was fine - good value break some years back. But that doesn't make much difference if you will spend your honeymoon being hacked off that someone else chose it for you and picked something you didn't want. So I would work on changing it without a direct confrontation.

Snazzynewyear Thu 28-Feb-13 23:42:25

Panda shock

KD0706 Fri 01-Mar-13 00:39:10

We went to lanzarote on holiday a few years ago and actually quite enjoyed it blush

But i think YANBU - it's odd mil selecting and booking your honeymoon and even more bizarre that she's chosen somewhere that wasn't on your list.
Given the reason that's been given is budget constraints I would be worried you'll end up in some shitty resort and miserable.

Get DH (DF?) to have a word and sort it.

MumofWombat Fri 01-Mar-13 01:30:17

I think your future DH needs to go and have a word with his mum. He needs to say that in passing he mentioned Lanzarote to you and that you said that you had been there before, didn't really like it etc and so now he is worrying about it being suitable as the honeymoon destination. There is plenty of time of change to the booking, perhaps he could offer to her to help pay the extra to make it into one of the places you would really like to go to. He should do this as he was the one that stated to her (without checking with you) that it would be fine. He needs to take it on his shoulders.
So talk to him, he really needs to see your point of view, and he needs to deal with MIL.

FairPhyllis Fri 01-Mar-13 02:41:16

Actually I think YANBU and seeing as this will be a special time for you you should not be railroaded into this, especially as it's not what you agreed to. You may end up in some hotel which is horrible.

I would also worry about creating a precedent for this sort of controlling behaviour from your ILs. ILs paying for a honeymoon not necessarily weird, but choosing the destination and going against what you'd agreed is very strange. If the wedding is months away then you can get this sorted now and let any bad feeling dissipate before the wedding.

When were you supposed to find out the destination? Right before you went away?

Lavenderhoney Fri 01-Mar-13 03:53:05

It sounds a bit odd to me. If its a family tradition, who else in the family has done it and where did they go? Has no one ever mentioned it?
What about when you get married and start your own family traditions, like Christmas day at your house?

It's very generous of her, but if you don't want to go there for your special time then it won't be something to look forward to. And there is so much pressure nowadays to have a dream honeymoon destination and if lanzarote doesn't feature on yours or dh to be then it won't be much fun.

Can you google where you might be staying? It might be lovely, you never know.

Oh, and don't let your mil get involved again in big decisions. It's a slippery slope. ( experience)

echt Fri 01-Mar-13 06:46:51

Hire a car and drive round Lanzarote looking at at all the Manrique museums/restaurants/galleries; they're beautiful. There's a fab cactus garden and the Cuevos Verde. A trip round a volcano is good.

On the other hand, I don't think YABU because Lanzarote was not what you asked for and you positively don't want to go. Tell DH-to-be the deal's off; I'm sure somewhere else can be booked between now and August.

Now I think of it, with a world recession on, I'd be amazed if all the places you wanted were booked out. Do a bit of checking yourself.

We had the worst possible honeymoon, we had hardly any money, Terrible hotel, no car, nasty food, ear infection, just dreadful.
It hasn't affected our marriage smile and we laugh about it.
But even we would not want to knowingly go on a holiday we didn't want to go on.

Please say something NOW, forget surprises and family traditions, just talk about it openly like adults.
I am sure your MIL, if she loves you both, would want you to be happy. This is not making you happy.
Please talk to her

ZillionChocolate Fri 01-Mar-13 07:23:33

I had two honeymoons, both surprises, both fantastic. Both booked by someone who was thinking about what I'd enjoy.

I think you can enjoy a honeymoon anywhere, certainly my parents/grandparents never had anything flash. I agree with the suggestion of just making the best of it and then going to your preferred destination later on. That said, if you're likely to brood over it so not be able to make the best of it, now is the time to sort it out. I think it's DF's responsibility. He's the one that put MiL's convenience over your wishes. I'd modify the tradition so that it's a surprise to only one of you. Can you trust DF to sort out a holiday? (I'd call off the wedding if you can't wink)

ZillionChocolate Fri 01-Mar-13 07:31:10

Is the Maldives your dream destination OP? I've just read a thread on here that makes Lanzarote look infinitely more civilised.

ChasedByBees Fri 01-Mar-13 07:34:50

Oh yuk how awful. I was going to suggest what mumofwombat has said

LadyPessaryPam Fri 01-Mar-13 07:36:15

Yes at least you don't get flogged for extramarital sex there. Not that you will be doing that as you are waiting till your married OP.

blondecat Fri 01-Mar-13 07:40:45

I let DH organize the honeymoon

We went 10 months after the wedding and in the end I has to book half of it. It was still great.

Enjoy whatever you do
Go to lanzarote. Have a laugh. Keep mil happy. Don't think of it a your honeymoon

Then, plan something special for next year

DevlinMaccabee Fri 01-Mar-13 07:43:44

Do you know where it's been booked at?

I work at a well known travel agency and if its the same one then I'll
gladly have a little look and confirm if it is indeed Lanzarote grin

TobyLerone Fri 01-Mar-13 07:54:14

YABU. Totally U. I can't believe more people don't think so.

And I'm shocked at people saying that you should let her waste her money on a holiday and then go somewhere else shock

echt Fri 01-Mar-13 07:56:31

I'd check on other "family traditions" while you're at it. grin

lollilou Fri 01-Mar-13 07:57:40

Yabu. A honeymoon to me is being with your new husband on holiday. That's what you have been given, lucky you.
Go and find some info on Lanzarote and get excited about it.

natwebb79 Fri 01-Mar-13 07:59:24

Toby - so if this thread was reversed and the OP said 'I'm booking a surprise honeymoon for my DS and DIL as per family tradition and have asked them for 5 places they would like to go. However, I've now decided to book them on a honeymoon in a place they haven't said they would like to go. AIBU?', would you not say 'Erm, that's a bit weird when they gave you 5 places within the budget where they would actually like to go!'? hmm

When we got married there was no way we could afford a fancy honeymoon. We had a lovely day in Paris as a gift from friends, our wedding night in a fancy hotel as a gift from my parents and a few days as part of a group staying at the Gower. A year and a bit later we had a month in Switzerland. Many years later I consider the month in Switzerland as our honeymoon and haven't given it a second thought. It was lovely, we got several trips and some de-stressing down time after the wedding and a year later a fancy trip. win-win.

natwebb79 Fri 01-Mar-13 08:00:58

But Lollilou she's already been to Lanzarote and didn't like it. And she gave the MIL (on request!) 5 perfectly good places to choose from! Why do so many people pander to fruit loopyness??

TobyLerone Fri 01-Mar-13 08:02:34

I'm not saying it's not odd that the MIL has done this. But it's just a bloody holiday, at the end of the day. People get disproportionately precious about wedding-related things.

TobyLerone Fri 01-Mar-13 08:04:25

Why do so many people pander to fruit loopyness??

Um...because the 'fruit loop' is paying possibly upwards of a grand for a holiday for them?

diddl Fri 01-Mar-13 08:04:37

But isn't it her fiance's "fault" for telling his mum that Lanzerote was OK?

tedmundo Fri 01-Mar-13 08:07:41

YANBU to feel a bit gutted that you are not getting to chose your own honeymoon. I find that odd and I would have hated it.

BUT - YABU to moan as it seems you agreed to MIL aranging it (although I appreciate she has changed the destination!)

I really can't believe some people are suggesting wasting a pefectly good holiday and booking somewhere else! Did the economic crisis get fixed last night?! Did I blink and miss it?! Wow, to see money as so easy come easy go would make my head explode.

There are some lovely parts of Lanzarote. I doubt she has booked you into some 18-30 horror. I imagine it is a lovely hotel and, with a car, you will have a good time exploring a very beautiful place.

Enjoy your wedding and honeymoon. They are such special times. I am jealous as I would love to do mine all over again! HAVE FUN!

natwebb79 Fri 01-Mar-13 08:08:24

She offered to! Not only offered to, pretty much said it's a given in their family that she takes charge of it. And it's not any old holiday, it's their honeymoon! In the grand scheme of things it won't matter yadayada but come on, any reasonable person would know that it's odd. And yes, OP I really think your DF needs to man up and say something. What is it with men and their mothers??

hwjm1945 Fri 01-Mar-13 08:10:54

I would be more worried about what else should we will be organizing for you for the rest of your married for the hills!

MrsSchadenfreude Fri 01-Mar-13 08:13:36

My friend's MIL said that she wanted to book the hotel for the wedding night. My friend agreed, thought it was a lovely gesture. They ended up in a grotty B & B in Brighton with PIL in the next room and her DH's brothers across the landing. hmm

They waited until they had actually gone away, the following day, to consummate their marriage (and it was the first time for them too), as the hotel had walls like paper.

IDontDoIroning Fri 01-Mar-13 08:14:10

It will need to be all paid up 10 weeks before.
Your choices are
Go in and change the booking don't tell her til it's too late.
Go and make the best of it but keep talking about how this is just a holiday and your "real" honey moon will be next year etc
Get your dh to talk to her and take back control of the situation.

DontmindifIdo Fri 01-Mar-13 08:15:01

I think you need to talk to your DP - tell him that you won't go on honeymoon to Lanzerote unless you are 100% certain it's actually a very nice boutique hotel outside Lanzerote, not in the town it'self.

then work on how you can 'fix' this - you will be able to change the booking (probably with a fee), but he can talk to his mum and say you don't want to go, so if it's not refundable, she should change the names and take your FIL and you will both sort your own honeymoon.

Quite frankly, she's gone out and booked a honeymoon you didn't want, to a place if you'd been given any imput would be out. She's ignored your requests. Rather than saying "where you want to go is over our budget, would you like to pay the difference?" she's gone ahead.

I am of the opinion when it comes to MILs, it's seems to be the view on here that the DIL should be the one to suck up upset and avoid upsetting the MIL but MILs don't have an equal responsibility to avoid upsetting DILs. If someone has to be upset, I don't think it should be the bride.

Whocansay Fri 01-Mar-13 08:20:07

Lanzarote? What, couldn't she get Benidorm?

I wasn't a Bridezilla in the slightest, but this would really piss me off. It doesn't exactly have the romance and glamour you hope for from a honeymoon does it?

Nothing you can do now you've accepted though (except hope its all a horrible joke). Just go on a second honeymoon at a later date. Good luck and congratulations.

TobyLerone Fri 01-Mar-13 08:20:43

Lanzarote is an island, dontmindifido. OP might struggle with a nice boutique hotel in the sea hmm

Bunbaker Fri 01-Mar-13 08:23:59

I can only assume that those of you who don't/didn't like Lanzarote stayed in chav resorts and didn't explore the island. It is like saying that Spain is horrible or Majorca is nasty. Parts of Spain and Majorca aren't very nice, but they don't put me off visiting them. Benidorm holds no appeal to me, but Seville, Cordoba and Granada do. Likewise, wild horses wouldn't drag me to Magaluf, but the north west of the island is beautiful.

I agree with * echt*. Lanzarote has some beautiful and interesting sights that are worth seeing. Timanfaya National Park is amazing. The Cesar Manrique sights are wonderful. I didn't like Costa Teguise where we stayed, but I liked the island as a whole.

As for the OP, I'm kind of on the fence here. While it sounds as though the MIL is controlling by booking a honeymoon that the OP didn't want, I don't think it is a great idea to piss your MIL off right from day one by refusing the honeymoon. You have been put in a difficult position and need to tread carefully. You need to make it clear that your MIL mustn't set a precedent about controlling organising other parts of your life, and just smile and say thank you.

When OH and I got married nearly 32 years ago w were so skint that we couldn't afford a proper honeymoon and spent the first week staying at my IL's house (MIL does live in a particularly nice part of the UK), so I am a little envious that your MIL is prepared to organise a honeymoon abroad for you. That said she is sending you to somewhere that you didn't chose yourself.

tempnameswap Fri 01-Mar-13 08:24:01

YANBU in any way. I can totally understand why you don't want MIL to have this level of control over your honeymoon.

I was even upset that my DH booked our honeymoon and our first night hotel when he was with his mother, having discussed through options etc. My MIL is an incredibly controlling woman (didn't fully know it then) and that gave her an 'in' to continue poking her nose in. For eg late on our wedding night they phoned the hotel (because they obviously knew where it was) to discuss a missing bag and how to deliver it. We were in bed....dh was forced to chat with the ILs about how the day had gone and then got up to receive the bag at the door. We ended up having a horrible row about it that night sad.

For me the wedding night and honeymoon are a private thing - you kind of escape, sometimes to a completely secret place, and barring family tragedy no one contacts you. They wait for you to come home to tell them about it. They don't arrange it all (even ignoring where you want to go!) and expect thanks.

This is a slippery slope OP - my ILs also paid for the hotel we had already booked (unasked and unwanted) for my first mother's day and then called us there too. Sounds harmless but they have subsequently caused endless trouble (objecting to house moves, threatening to cut us off if we don't do what they want, being offended if we don't go to the restaurant they choose etc etc). Your ILs may be easier than that but I would take this as a warning!

Good luck!

Btw I think Lanzarote is probably much nicer than you fear - there are some beautiful parts - so that aspect will be ok I reckon.

olgaga Fri 01-Mar-13 08:24:03

I can't imagine why you agreed to this in the first place - even the "shortlist" idea!


I would point-blank refuse. If she isn't prepared to pay for a honeymoon destination of your choice, I'd say forget it, we'll pay for it ourselves ta v much.

Has your mil got a sense of humour? I think she's winding you up.

AminoA Fri 01-Mar-13 08:37:59

'a very nice boutique hotel outside Lanzerote, not in the town it'self'

grin <imagines Sebastian the crab singing Under The Sea>

fedupofnamechanging Fri 01-Mar-13 08:42:42

I didn't have a honeymoon at all (too skint at the time) and even I would have hated this. It's a big regret fore that dh and I didn't get that private time to ourselves. I think a honeymoon is actually quite important, esp if you haven't had many holidays together, or if, as in your case, it the first time you will be sleeping together. I think you need to get a lot more details about exactly what has been booked and if you are not happy then it needs to he changed.

It's all very well people saying not to treat this as your real honeymoon, but it is your real honeymoon. I think a lot of long term bitterness and resentment will be stored up if it turns outvto br horrible.

Your df needs to sort this - best for him to deal with his mum.

ssd Fri 01-Mar-13 08:46:02

I don't know why you are so worried about this, its the rest of your married life I'd be worrying about

digerd Fri 01-Mar-13 09:02:59

I think honeymoons are old fashioned as were intended for married couples who had not lived together or even had sex before the marriage.
Dh and I didn't have one after 9 years of living together. But dad paid for a holiday abroad the following year, and we booked for Majorca which is where we had met 10 years before.

MIL has already paid for it. Book your own next year for your real Honeymoon.

Patchouli Fri 01-Mar-13 09:07:28

Maybe do one night at the start and one night at the end in Lanzarote so you use the flights. Then pop over to Essaouira/Marrakesh and stay in a nice riad for most of it. Any photo queries tell MIL Morocco was just an excursion.

digerd the OP already said she hasn't has sex prior to marriage.

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 09:21:47

"He says it doesn't matter as long as we're together - very sweet but doesn't help any!"

That is not sweet. It's wet.

He's letting his mother run his life and now your joint life.

diddl is right. The main fault here is that he said Lanzarote was OK without checking with you.

This is the start of your married life together and he's letting his mother plan it without any input from you.

This would give me serious pause about marrying into this family.

Normal families don't railroad other people into traditions that are barely disguised bossiness.

You should have felt able to refuse.

That you didn't is an indication of what your life will be like if you go ahead and shackle yourself to these people.

FWIW nearly 6 years after our amazing honeymoon planned by my now DH (in consultation with me) the memories of that wonderful break together sustain me through the grim days when poo explosion follows tantrum follows last minute school closure.

Bejeena Fri 01-Mar-13 09:28:43

I agree book the honeymoon you want to go on for later on. We didn't have our honeymoon until five months after wedding because my husband organised it and it was a surprise and was best for us to go in December rather than straight after wedding because we went to Thailand! Just do that and of course to you and hubby the holiday you book will be your honeymoon your MIL just gave you a holiday as a wedding present.

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 09:34:36

I got pregnant on my honeymoon, so a late honeymoon would have been wasted on me.

It kind of needs to be right after the wedding, to my mind.

If we had been waiting until we were married to shag that woukd have seemed even more important.

And way more weird that my prospective husband wanted his mother to make the arrangements.

Doubletroublemummy2 Fri 01-Mar-13 09:41:14

WWhhaaaat!!!! Your MIL is buying you a holiday!!!! what a bitch!!! you gonna have take time away and enjoy yourself at someone elses expense!! ~i mean really did she not even think of your feelings!!! this sort of shit is exactly why we never had a honey moon! oh wait no it isn't it's because we couldn't afford and don't have a MIL to splash the cash!

You could go on that honeymoon, enjoy it and save for another later

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 09:46:18

If by "later" you mean in a couple of decades, then yes they can just have the same kind of holiday later.

In my case opprtunities for holiday alone with husband since honeymoon = 0

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 09:50:52

I just wonder why you were asked to choose five destinations if none of them were booked.

Is it booked for immediately after the wedding? If not then book a sneaky weekend in Paris before you go and call that your honeymoon

Otherwise - and what I'd have done - is tell DH to be that you don't want to go to Lanzarote for your honeymoon and get him to sort it out before the booking is finalised.

MyDarlingClementine Fri 01-Mar-13 09:55:24

Who would put thier honeymoon in thier mils hands anyway.

This is a life lesson you are learning here - and for that - this is an invaluble holiday!

Has everyone missed the part where the OP said that is going to be a honeymoon in the traditional sense? So it's not just a quick holiday after the wedding, it really will be very special for her and her new DH.

OP, please be more firm about it. You will remember how this plays out for the rest of your life!! Surely they can change the plans that have been made.

MyDarlingClementine Fri 01-Mar-13 10:14:51

I have no idea why but I have always thought getting a sleeper train to scotland was soo romantic as a honeymoon with a little hamper.

Doubletroublemummy2 Fri 01-Mar-13 10:17:58

Have people totally lost the plot on what is actually important. OP I think your DF has the right idea when he say's as long as you are together,..Your honeymoon is about the fact that you are together for the first time not about location. It will be special no matter where you are.

Also please bear in mind that the month long international honeymoon is the product of 21st century advertising and wedding magazines. It is traditional for the grooms family to pay fo the honeymoon (and for it be at the nearest beach resort if you're lucky) as it is for the brides family to pay for the wedding, but often this doesn't happen.

I don't see why the MIL trying to do something nice for the couple should be automatically assumed as being controlling, and anyway, you are marrying into a new family, you won't be ableto get things your own way all the time. she is probably just trying to be involved as she is about to loose her son to his new wife.

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 10:18:03

I hadn't missed it. Thats why I suggested a weekend in Paris!

The fact that the honeymoon is so significant makes it even odder that it's been handed over to MIL to manage.

I honestly wouldn't have allowed this in OPs position.

FashionFail Fri 01-Mar-13 10:20:04

It could be a double bluff: she's tried to confince your df that it's Lanzarote but it's really somewhere much nicer .


Doubletroublemummy2 Fri 01-Mar-13 10:21:54

P.S. you can often judge a mans temperament by the way he treats his mother,..

Do you really want a man who is willing to tell his mother that something she has put time and effort and scraped together the money for isn't good enough..

Sounds to me like you are marrying a really nice guy wink

You could bring up in conversation how much you are looking forward to the Honeymoon - as the last holiday you had was a really shitty one in Lanzarotte and you are so grateful that you are not going back there!

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 10:23:45

OK. It's been decided that DF will have a gentle word with his mum. I couldn't change the booking without her knowledge as it's bound to come out and that would be incredibly rude!

If she's really pissed off about us asking to change the booking we'll go and do our research to make the best of it. I'm just worried that even asking will cause a row.

No not the Maldives grin. I've always fancied Cuba as it seems like such a unique place. DF not really bothered about travel so this is just about me and what I want really.
Wish us luck!

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 10:28:19

Good Luck OP!

Cuba is definitely unique grin

LittleEdie Fri 01-Mar-13 10:32:53


I love Cuba, have been there twice. As long as you don't mind the food not being great, it's an amazing place.

We are going to Costa Rica for our honeymoon.

Sausagedog27 Fri 01-Mar-13 10:34:03

Good luck! I think you need to agree with your partner what he will say- gentle might not cut it. She probably will be annoyed in having to change the booking- doesn't mean you should accept that though.

Hullygully Fri 01-Mar-13 10:34:28

I think this is hilarious.

No one, no one, no one would choose Lanzarote as a honeymoon surprise.

They wouldn't.

And there's no way you couldn't get Mallorca/Minorca etc as cheap.

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 10:43:03

AKiss Costa Rica was another one we were thinking about.
Exit do you know something?!? Spill!

We went on an all inclusive about 3 years ago.

The people are fabulous
It is hot, very hot.
The food was OK but buffet style and you had to turn a blind eye to hygiene
I had to turn a blind eye to animal abuse
I had to turn a blind eye to animal abuse
I had to turn a blind eye to animal abuse
I had to turn a blind eye to the politics
The people are fabulous

HTH wink

The hotel next door was child free and was probably more suited to honeymooners......

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 01-Mar-13 10:57:25

Onyl just read this so too late for any useful input but my inlaws offered to pay for our honeymoon. So kind and I have never forgotten that. The difference being they put the destination entirely in our hands.

For me there's just too much interference here but yes having agreed to her terms at the outset, if she won't budge now on destination, just focus on you & STBDH.

The charade of 'Choose 5 places which are then utterly disregarded' does hint at the possibility of additional family travellers to share your good fortune as already suggested! Don't be surprised if you find more familiar faces at breakfast!

Anyway good luck OP tell us how DP gets on with discussing your honeymoon.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 01-Mar-13 11:03:36

Do you know what hotel you are in? It could be that she is looking for 5 star hotels and the ones in Mallorca were more expensive.If its a nice hotel with its own beach area, then I can't really see what the problem is.

Personally I'm going to go against the crowd here. You agreed to her booking it. You didn't have an issue with the controlling nature of it when it was a destination of your choice.

I can see why you are put out now, but I'd get all the information before you have the "big talk" with her, or indeed don't. Iliked Lanzarote when we went, granted it wasn't a cultural hot bed, but nor would I imagine is Menorca. We did some of the Cesar Manrique things and that was fun and a camel ride that was not.

On our honeymoon we went to Colorado where it snowed in June and I wish we had just gone somewhere hot and relaxing.Granted Lanzarote would not have been on my list, but it doesn't mean its awful.

PommePoire Fri 01-Mar-13 11:10:04

OP are you 100% sure that this isn't some devilish scheme designed to 'test' your to measure your manners and grace under pressure? The idea being that your MIL lets you think the honeymoon is to Lanzarote, but really she has booked one of your chosen destinations and that is the surprise?

This is not the same really, but when we got married we opened our wedding presents before we went on honeymoon. My godparents had bought us a (very nice!) oven dish. I am ashamed to admit that I privately thought to myself that they'd been a tiny bit mean, given that I was very close to them and they are financially more than comfortable. Well, thank goodness, I kept my brattish thoughts to myself, because when we returned from honeymoon it was to find an absolutely beautiful framed embroidery sampler with our names, the date and place of our wedding etc. that my godmother had painstakingly stitched herself. So, <clutching at straws here> maybe your MIL has booked your dream honeymoon and it's 'all part of the fun' that she's letting you think otherwise?

PommePoire Fri 01-Mar-13 11:11:46

Designed to test 'you' not 'your' obviously, sorry.

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 11:30:24

Knowing them it's not a test or a joke and to be fair I doubt very much that they'll turn up on our honeymoon.
the original yes I think you've hit the nail on the head re hotels.
Exit oh dear, I'd thought about the political situation but not anything to do with animal welfare sad

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 01-Mar-13 11:30:35

Actually just had a thought.

If your DF is going to talk to her, could he steer it along the lines that you have been to Lanzarote before and you feel it's important on honeymoon to go to somewhere new together? That's assuming of course that you haven't been to the other destinations before.

It feels a bit better than saying that Lanzarote is not naice, which to be honest, she can't really help but interpreting as you feel she has bad judgement.

I can see how it happened. She probably went into the travel agent with her list but then realised they were over budget and the assistant probably suggested Lanzarote as an alternative.

I don't think either of you are necessarily wrong, but you do have to be very very careful how you handle it otherwise it will taint the wedding and future relationships with your MIL.

' assistant probably suggested Lanzarote as an alternative.'

any travel agent who suggests Lanzarote for a honeymoon is in the wrong job.

SanityClause Fri 01-Mar-13 11:38:21

I think asking to change it will seem very grabby, frankly. They are giving you a lovely gift horse, and you are staring onto its wide open mouth.

If you really want to go to Cuba, save up and go another time.

Incidentally, I have been to Lanzarote to this hotel. Twice.

'oh dear, I'd thought about the political situation but not anything to do with animal welfare '

I must say that although their political situation leaves a lot to be desired, so does ours. The way they treat the elderly is exemplary and education is free for everyone as far as they would like to go. Yes of course there are major failings too, but I'd sooner support Cuba with my tourism than many other countries.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 01-Mar-13 11:41:50

Seriously Akiss, it's not Magaluf. I thought Lanzarote was ok when we were there, and we have travelled quite a bit.

5 star hotels are fairly similar the world over. If it's a big one with it's own grounds and restaurants then you won't be out that much.

Is it a week or a fortnight - sorry you may have said earlier ? If its a week then I'd say it will be fine provided the hotel is high quality.

YellowFlyingPineapple Fri 01-Mar-13 11:45:39

NO NO NO! Do not let allow her to do this or it will be the beginning of very stormy waters.

It is the honeymoon of you and you soon to be DH, you gave her a list of 5 possibles and she ignored them in favour of Lanzarote, really Lanzarote for a honeymoon?

Holidays after your honeymoon generally especially if children have been born are not the luxury, thrill-seeking and memorable experiences that honeymoons should be in my opinion but more easy and practical locations. Lanzarote would not be on my list as a honeymoon destination, ever.

She should either give with a good heart or don't give at all. Traditionally the groom decides and surprises his bride after they have married. What a strange world for a MIL to be so involved in details of your marriage! My DH pulled the most amazing honeymoon surprise out of the bag when we retired to bed after the wedding celebrations had ended, he would have been taking the honeymoon alone if his Mother had decided where we were going.

Say a very firm and polite NO or risk trouble in the future.

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 01-Mar-13 11:47:36

The good thing about Lanzarote is that it's close to La Gomera - the Canary Island that tourism forgot. It has it's own little micro climate, a cloud forest.

I think that there are flights from Lanzarote, so it may be worthwhile to look into this. Use Lanzarote as your base OP and book yourselves a few days at the beautiful Parador on La Gomera.

theoriginalandbestrookie Fri 01-Mar-13 11:55:12

That would have been good advice yellowflyingpineapple if the OP had not already agreed in principal to the honeymoon MIL purchase idea.

My bet is that by saying No now it's going to escalate to something very unpleasant, unless it''s handled very carefully. In all the holidays I have booked recently I'm fairly sure you don't get to change destination or cancel them without significant financial penalty.

Yes MIL should have checked before changing destination to Lanzarote but honestly if I had been her I wouldn't have thought it would be as bad as some of you are saying. There is a lot of unnecessary snobbery about the Canary islands.

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 12:04:47

The OP agreed in principal to the honeymoon idea when she got to pick five destinations

All bets are off now as the MIL has decided to ignore the choices

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 01-Mar-13 12:11:13

Look on the bright side you are bound to get sunshine. There might be a spa with lovely treatments. Don't forget to set your alarm clock nice and early for bagging a sunbed by the pool. It's not likely to be a month long so I'm sure you and DP can endure.

Btw as we're on the subject of falling into traps, remember this when it comes to Christmas - start as you mean to go on - don't get into rigid of patterns of this-year-at-PILs-next-at-Lanzagrotty's-folks. Assert yourselves, join in when you fancy but don[t be shy of saying you're starting your own traditions.

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 12:19:54

OK. I'm having second thoughts about saying anything now. I hadn't thought about it costing them more money. That would be a disaster as this has happened due to budget limitations anyway. We could offer to pay the extra but it's going to seem really superior of us.
Shit. I'm going to have to go along with it aren't I?

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 12:23:47

I wouldn't OP

If the five destinations you chose are too expensive then surely you should get a second shot at chosing somewhere. It's NOT MIL's honeymoon

PopeBenedictsP45 Fri 01-Mar-13 12:28:01

"It's NOT MIL's honeymoon"

Yes, exactly. And if money's a problem for them they shouldn't be organising it in the first place! Do you think she felt under pressure because 'it's a tradition' but she can't really afford it?

Don't go along with it. Reassure her that if budget is an issue then you will gladly pay for your own honeymoon. Your PIL can take the Lanzarote holiday and you can go where you like.

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 12:34:28

they've got plenty of money but that's not the point. Looks like they reached the limit of what they were prepared to pay and that's fair enough but if we challenge it now and offer to pay more it'll look like we're saying they haven't spent enough i think.
Talking myself out of it now. Arrrgh

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 12:36:29

Well it's your choice OP. You can be all passive and grateful but you will still have had a honeymoon in a destination you not only didn't choose but didn't want.

teaandbourbons Fri 01-Mar-13 12:37:09

Is it definitely all paid for? When are you due to travel? I think I would suck it up but make sure you are more prepared in future. I'm a wimp at these things though.

Lanzagrotty Fri 01-Mar-13 12:40:57

Yes will defintiely be more prepared!

Right off to measure my boobs now grin
Will update if anything significant happens

Oh and thanks for all the tips ladies I will definitely be checking out La Gomera etc.

tedmundo Fri 01-Mar-13 12:50:28

OP - someone made the very good point that 5* quality is actually quite universal.

5* - even in Lanzerote - will be special. Can you at least find out that this is what they have in mind for you, research the resort the hotel is in, and go from there before you say anything that might make things unpleasant for a long, long time.

I really am torn on what to advise because you DID agree to them paying for the honeymoon. That has really put you on the back foot.

A gorgeous hotel in a good resort will be sensational. Perhaps she felt it was better to push the boat out with the hotel rather than the destination. 3* in Mallorca would never be as special for a 5* in the Canaries.

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 12:58:17

Nobody knows if it's 5* or not.

ChasedByBees Fri 01-Mar-13 12:59:24

I would still say something. This is your holiday and they booked somewhere you don't like without checking. I think that's rude.

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 13:08:28

"my soon to be MIL told us that she would pay for our honeymoon as a wedding present - she also said she would choose where we go and it would be a surprise. We had to choose five places in Europe and she would choose one."

This whole situation is really weird and not promising for future relations with this family.

Honestly, this is not how gifts work.

You don't inform something that you are paying for and choosing something they were happy to provide for themselves.

And no "family tradition" involves that level of meddling.

People telling you to be grateful that you get no say whatsoever in your honeymoon are bonkers.

The fact that they are well off but setting a low budget for your honeymoon (less than you would spend if you weren't being browbeaten into a felting this "gift") just makes it even more insulting.

From start to finish this whole arrangement is incredibly impertinent.

Think carefully about marrying into this family when your fiancé is so weak that he expects you to go along with it because your happiness on your honeymoon doesn't matter.

5Foot5 Fri 01-Mar-13 13:10:39

It is traditional for the grooms family to pay fo the honeymoon

FIL paid for our honeymoon, but he didn't try to influence where we went. He just told us what our budget was and let us book what we fancied within that.

I still think it is not worth rocking the boat if your MIL is otherwise a reasonable person. She probably sees it as a nice and generous gesture (which it is!) and will be hurt and offended if you make waves. Don't risk ruining the relationship with her so early on.

cashmere Fri 01-Mar-13 13:14:26

I'd go and then save up and do a dream holiday for your anniversary...unless you're TTC soon. In which case I would also book the 2nd holiday sooner.

sherbetpips Fri 01-Mar-13 13:18:31

The biggest thing to remember as a bridezilla is that once the special day is over you have to pay for it. Both in terms of how you behaved and the bills.
In terms of your dream location - realistically if you were paying for it yourself would you have been able to afford it without incurring any debt?
I like you would feel a bit funny about it but at the end of the day your honeymoon is being paid for to a warm place that actually has some very nice resorts. When the tan has faded and the pics put away you will need your family and your MIL more than the memories of the holiday.
If however she had booked you a week in Blackpool I would tell her where to stick it.

Jenny70 Fri 01-Mar-13 13:23:34

I would assume that when MIL found that the 5 choices were out (for whatever reason, real or imagined) she spoke to your DH about Lanzarote. She may have already booked it, or maybe she confirmed it with him beforehand. It seems beyond bizarre to ask for 5 destinations, then change it to anther (I mean the whole booking the honeymoon for you is odd, but perhaps I can see it from a nice angle if you had a choice in destination).

If it was meant to be this big surprise etc, why does he know about it? What did he say when he found out?

It does seem very controlling MIL behaviour, but the time to back out has passed and now it's time to put on a smile and laugh about it if it all turns pear shaped.

It's only a holiday - yes a honeymoon, but still a marriage is about the years to come, not 2 weeks in Canary Islands...

I've been to Lanzarote twice for Xmas - Playa Blanca. It is actually jolly nice with lots of dramatic and beautiful scenery and some great food to be had in the coastal villages. If you are in a good hotel, with a nice pool, a bar and a comfy bed for consummation purposes then you will have a lovely time. We were knackered on our honeymoon from all the last minute wedding planning and shagging

WorriedTeenMum Fri 01-Mar-13 13:34:44

How about this as a suggestion:

Get DF to tell MiL that something unspeakable happened when you were last in Lanzarote. Through counselling you have put the trauma behind you. Unfortunately no amount of counselling will make it possible to go to Lanzarote again.

If asked what the trauma was explain that it is too awful to think about <wobbly lip, crumpled tissue, brave little smile>.

Offer to top up honeymoon fund to go somewhere (anywhere) else.

Of course this does mean that for the rest of your life every time someone mentions Lanzarote you will have to give a little shudder but I dont think this will be too hard!

Bunbaker Fri 01-Mar-13 13:53:25

It is interesting that their are some very different viewpoints on here. Does that reflect on the posters' relationships with their own ILs?

I get on very well with my MIL. We started off on the right footing and have continued ever since. I have also read numerous posts on MN from people who don't get on with their ILs and it seems to me that it makes life pretty miserable for some. Is it really worth sabotaging your relationship with them by refusing this holiday, which to all intents and purposes, is a kind and generous gesture?

I can only assume that as the OP is getting married during the school holidays that the MIL couldn't book the holiday she wanted the happy couple to have.

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 14:00:09

That may be true Bunbaker but why didn't the MIL say that she was struggling to get a booking at any of the five destinations that the couple had chosen and were there any other places they liked the look of?

It seems such a waste of money to book a holiday somewhere that isn't on the list.

Bunbaker Fri 01-Mar-13 14:02:22

I agree. I would be wary of spending so much money on a surprise for someone unless I was very certain of their likes and dislikes.

MyDarlingClementine Fri 01-Mar-13 14:10:10

can anyone explain looking a gift horse in the mouth terminology to me please

Chunderella Fri 01-Mar-13 14:16:25

I would've thought location less important in a traditional honeymoon, not more. After all, OP will only really be seeing the bedroom and maybe the bathroom and balcony.

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 14:18:49

As I understand it one of the ways you check to see if a horse is worth buying is to check its mouth (for damage from the bit?).

But if you are given a horse for free you are not supposed to care if it is a useless nag that will cost you thousands in stable fees.

I get on well with my MIL.

But I wouldn't if she was this overbearing about how DH and I chose to spend our honeymoon.

ILikeBirds Fri 01-Mar-13 14:27:50

How long is it booked for? Is it possible to book a further week somewhere else and have a two part honeymoon?

Were any of the original 5 choices outside of Europe?

BlueSkySoftSand Fri 01-Mar-13 14:31:03

Not read the entire thread as my attention span is limited today, so apologies if someone has already given this info.

I've spent a fair bit of time in Lanza and know the island really well . . . happy to give you a list of places to visit and what to avoid, best restaurants and so on.

ILikeBirds Fri 01-Mar-13 14:37:41

Oh, and la gomera is the other side of Tenerife, not close to lanzarote

Athing You check the horse's mouth to tell how old it is (from it's teeth)


Kat101 Fri 01-Mar-13 15:21:50

It just doesn't add up - since when was lanzarote hugely cheaper than mallorca? Its twice as far in air travel for starters?

FairPhyllis Fri 01-Mar-13 15:53:40

I think because this is a traditional honeymoon it makes it more important that OP and her DF will feel comfortable in whatever environment they are in. If OP gets there and the MIL has booked them into a totally unsuitable hotel, the OP may feel upset and uncomfortable at a time when she and her DH are starting a new sexual part of their relationship. Having stress and resentment hanging over that week would probably be something the OP would always regret.

OP, your MIL is not being kind here, so don't let people persuade you to just suck it up. Kind would mean being considerate of your feelings and not using her generosity to make you feel you can't say anything.

MyDarlingClementine Fri 01-Mar-13 15:56:53

grin @ Chunderella

Thanks a thing

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 15:58:49

Thanks, Exit.

Was trying to remember what it said in Black Beauty grin

I'm definitely on the non-horsey side of the family.

AThingInYourLife Fri 01-Mar-13 16:00:00

"Kind would mean being considerate of your feelings and not using her generosity to make you feel you can't say anything."

Yes, exactly.

AyeOopMoose Fri 01-Mar-13 16:02:51

It's not about whether Lanzarote is suitable for a honeymoon or a nice place generally.

Future MiL offered to pay-nice gesture
Given 5 preferences-sensible, we're all different
Books a place not on the list-rude & controlling

If MiL agreed to book off your list, that's what she should have done. She is the one who has been rude in not respecting your wishes. If money was an issue she should have come back to you and explained this so you could all agree what should happen.

Now if your DF said it would be ok to book it, that's a different matter. He should communicate better with you.

Either way it needs sorting now to avoid future problems.

Do not just suck it up OP. You will feel resentful and cheated.

FWIW I would change the booking to a destination I was happy with for a similar price. I am sure this would be possible with a visit to the travel agents.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 01-Mar-13 16:05:48

Of course, traditionally the bride's family have most say over the wedding itself, perhaps this high handed approach over the honeymoon is MIL's way of balancing parental input?

Writehand Fri 01-Mar-13 16:10:56

I think you're being VU. I can completely see why you're upset but the time to prevent all this is long past. You had all these feelings and should have spoken up at the outset.

As things are, you've let it go far too long to get difficult now. Being unco-operative at this stage is just rude and unfriendly and will do your relationship with your new DH's family no good at all. Bite your tongue & make the best of it.

But MIL did check with DP and he said Lanzarote would be fine - I'd have castrated mine if he did that without consulting me not much consummation would take place if so mind you

Jins Fri 01-Mar-13 16:30:45

I agree. If I'd allowed someone else to take away the pleasure of choosing which hotel I stay in and which country I go to in the first place (which is highly unlikely) there would be little chance that DH would retain his consumation parts if I ended up somewhere I didn't want to go. grin

I don't understand why so many seem to think that OP should suck it up to keep things sweet either. Surely a healthy relationship doesn't need one party to be a complete pushover?

Ah well - glad I didn't have this fuss. I can still remember MILs annoyance when we told her we were going abroad and nobody was invited smile

MyDarlingClementine Fri 01-Mar-13 16:37:15

I am just wondering what delightful places my mil would have carefully chosen had she been in charge of my honeymoon....--sibera/north korea-- hmm

I think you should go to MIL and say that, actually, having thought about it, you've realised you really really don't like surprises, at all. And that as they've already let the cat out of the bag to your fiance, you'd like for it not to be a surprise any more, and please could she tell you all about where you're going so that you can enjoy getting excited about it (and look at tourist guides with her, or whatever).

Then you can figure out what to do, once you know what's planned.

Chances are she's planning something she thinks will be lovely with the best of intentions. Time to get things out in the open, and for you to talk to her. You've got a looong relationship with her ahead, get friendly now.

But if this is a "proper" traditional honeymoon for you, and she's booked you a good hotel, the location of the hotel is probably not awfully relevant blushgrin.

Fillyjonk75 Fri 01-Mar-13 16:54:19

In-laws paid for our reception but we had booked & sorted it before they offered, not that they would be controlling anyway.

I would be very uncomfortable about the OP's arrangement!

Fillyjonk75 Fri 01-Mar-13 16:55:55

La Gomera is idyllic and I'd be happy to have a honeymoon there.

Snazzynewyear Fri 01-Mar-13 17:08:34

I would still want to rebook. As I said earlier, say the original hotel had to close unexpectedly or something. Get fiance to find out the details to change the booking.

Spoonful Fri 01-Mar-13 18:26:53

Unlike most people I do think YABU to be honest.

1. The whole island can't be awful and grotty. If you end up somewhere cheap and cheerful, you'd have got the same in Majorca or wherever else you'd suggested, so you'd have had to make the best of it in just the same way.

2. The time to say no to the plan has passed, if they've spent time organising, money AND your DF verbal agreed with the destination.

3. Having your dream holiday next year or whenever will still be just as magical as straight after the wedding. You are having an extra little break, it does come across as churlish and spoilt to complain about it to me.

Loa Fri 01-Mar-13 18:27:18

I think you need to talk to your DF again- tell him its worrying you this much. That your worried about location and that they might take it into their heads to turn up.

If you then can't both find a way to take over the booking or talk to your MIL to put your mind at rest make sure you have a contingency plan - money set aside list of alternative accommodation and access to transport to at least if its terrible you can change hotel or go somewhere nearby.

It's not a good sign though IME. First time my IL were a real problem was at our small wedding causing a row between us day before and after with their antics all they had to do was turn up but still caused issues - inviting a couple to stay with us in our accommodation on our wedding night ffs - then when that failed stayed till 2 am then came round at 6 as half said couple wanted to go shopping with us- was nothing compare to their behavior was first DC was born.

get your fiance to speak to your future mil for you. and don't feel bad!

BegoniaBampot Fri 01-Mar-13 20:35:12

Why on earth did you agree to this in the fist place?

HouseOfBears Fri 01-Mar-13 21:56:31

I agree with Bertha, definitely say to mil that although it's their tradition, it's really stressing you out that you don't know where you're going, and that you have tried to go along with the tradition but it's making you really uncomfortable so can they please let you know the details and then you can get excited! Then if it's a lovely 5* resort then you're on a winner, and if it looks a bit grotty you can decide what to do. The not knowing would drive me nuts, I'm very fussy about where to stay and like to have read all the reviews and looked into the area etc.

I think to turn around and say "we don't want to go there, we want somewhere nicer" however politely you phrase it would be very rude, specially as you don't have the full picture.

Bunbaker Fri 01-Mar-13 22:05:43

I agree with Bertha and HouseOfBears. Just ask your MIL. It isn't fair that everyone else knows except for you.

Pendipidy Fri 01-Mar-13 22:22:40

What's happening then? Have you discussed it with her? I think an open and honest conversation is the only way forward.

OrangeLily Fri 01-Mar-13 22:28:03


That sounds like hell and a very strange choice on her part. Is there any chance of you dropping in to conversation

"You'll never get what silly DH2B said to me the other day..... He was trying so hard to wind me up... He said we are going to Lanzarote on honeymoon.....Can you imagine honeymooning there... Hahahahaha" "MIL I trust you'd never do that to me, I'm so glad iv got you when he tries so hard to wind me up" wink

I had a dream honeymoon straight after the wedding with a romantic stop over. DH planned it as a surprise and it was simply amazing. I sympathise with u here!!

Lavenderhoney Sat 02-Mar-13 04:26:23

Has your dh spoken to your mil yet? And also have to spoken to him about discussing where to go without including you or discussing it with you first?

She might have assumed he discussed it with you anyway and you were ok with it. You could ask your mil - I hear you couldn't book where we wanted ( one of 5 places) and had another place in mind. Did you know dh didn't mention it to me first? Because I am not sure it's where I wanted to go for my honeymoon.

You should do this if your dh won't admit to her he didn't check with you. Have you been together long?

MerryCouthyMows Sat 02-Mar-13 10:06:10

It concerns me that your DF would rather keep his Mother happy than you. (Been there, done that, got the t-shirt.)

What is going to happen when you have DC? If she disagrees with you, say, waiting till 6 months to wean? Would she ignore your wishes on that?

I think your future MIL is very controlling, and your DF's reaction to this situation (keeping his head down and not standing up for your wishes) tells me that he is still very much controlled by her.

Which isn't going to help your relationship, because every time he has to choose which one of you to keep happy (and there WILL be future disagreements where EITHER you or your MIL can be kept happy, but not both of you), will he choose to support you?

This sort of behaviour from a MIL is very insidious, and can cause a LOT of resentment on your part.

Personally? I would tell her thank you, but no thank you. Maybe SHE could use the booked holiday to Lanzarote, but you wish to go to Paris / South America / Africa / India / anywhere other than Lanzagrotty for your honeymoon. You appreciate the thought, greatly so, but you feel that you only get one chance to have a proper honeymoon, and you want that to be somewhere you and your DF wish to go, and you don't feel that Lanzarote is an ideal honeymoon destination.

If she kicks off, stay firm, without being nasty. This is YOURS AND YOUR DF'S honeymoon - NOT your MIL's honeymoon!!

LondonKitty Sat 02-Mar-13 10:57:18

Leave the bastard!!!

MyDarlingClementine Sat 02-Mar-13 11:44:50

I with merry mouthed cows.

You offer the money or contribute but dont control whole thing.
I knew people that did control and pay for it but the couple were over the mooon ( grin ) with the desitnation as it was seychelles.

I had a small thing where MIL offered to buy pram - v nice of her - I wondered when she would suggest us going to choose it - however what she meant was I am going to buy the pram with my own mother, adn you dont get a say in it.

So we said - no thanks, I will be using it everysingleday thanks, I want to choose it.

She was seething she said at lunch to her friend infornt of us " Have you heard of x prams - they are soo cool, we brought one for them but they made us take it back"

tempnameswap Sat 02-Mar-13 13:39:07

Yes honestly OP, it probably sounds overly dramatic to you whilst basking in love grin but this really is a slippery slope.

You are probably thinking, it may be misguided but it is basically kind of these MILs to book holidays, buy prams etc etc. My problem is mainly the location... But it seems to be classic behaviour of the potentially controlling MIL to start at the wedding and then ramp things up once the first gc is on the way - when they feel control over their son escaping basically. Believe me, you want a husband who is brave enough to challenge this early. Sons of controlling mothers often become immune to how insidious this is and have been brought up to go along with it for a peaceful life.

Get HIM (it really is essential YOU do not get involved) to say that he has realised he wants to arrange the honeymoon. It is important to him and he is only sorry he didn't flag this earlier but worried about upsetting her.

Honestly, setting the tone now is vital! Been there......

theoriginalandbestrookie Tue 05-Mar-13 21:52:57

Hi there OP, did your DF speak to his DM in the end. I ( and I'm sure others) would love an update.

Going by the original post, I'd imagine that Lanzagrotty is either on her honeymoon at the moment or is back from it. I'm sure we'd love an update as to where you ended up going and how the whole situation resolved itself.

Hope you had a lovely wedding & that where ever you ended up on honeymoon was just lovely!

notallytuts Wed 16-Oct-13 19:29:58

Any update OP? Would love to know how it turned out

neunundneunzigluftballons Wed 16-Oct-13 19:33:32

Family traditions and weddings blah. We are in a world of bother after a family tradition really offended the bride and has caused a huge rift in the family. I now believe they are better not happening.

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