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Wedding planning stress/hell

(102 Posts)
ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 00:03:56

Long term lurker, delurking and hoping for some help, support or advice. I am newly engaged to my DP since Aug and planning on getting married Aug 14 in Ireland where I am from. We have worked out a plan to pay for the wedding with us both saving 250 per month, my dad giving us 3k and his parents the same. That's 12k with a loan of 5K if we need. I may get more money together as some more hours at work have come my way. Hence budget is 17 k. I know this is quite a bit, but we have a home, and we both want a great day. The guest list is 120 people ( it started at 170).

Every time we talk about the wedding we argue. Tonight he said the cost scares the shit out of him, and says everyone thinks 120 is very big. It's small by Irish standards for me and my family/peers. Yet all our friends here in the UK do a big intake of breath when we mention it. Some people seem to think weddings per head are cheap, like 30 quid?, ours is 70/ head for 5 course meal, half bottle of wine, prosecco,canapés, evening food and exclusive use of a manor house and grounds. I genuinely can't find cheaper that isn't a hotel he has said is horrid. And the costs have been bargained down to this rate. It's really competitive.

The arguments stem from me doing the lions share of the work on this and feeling it's turning into my wedding, not ours. He voices concerns but it never feels constructive. I worry he will turn up on the day and be like what's this? I want him to be involved but he says he hates talking about it because it makes him anxious we will argue. We always do. He shuts down and goes quite and I shout.

He is a wonderful man, and he does most of the housework and is super domesticated and progressive. Loving and affectionate. So please don't have an Image of some oaf. The thing is with our home we decided every detail together constantly and I thought wedding planning would be the same. Feels like it's turned into something really negative now. Feeling like it's my problem and I need to get over it. Any advice great fully received.

Whatnext074 Fri 04-Oct-13 00:11:47

Sometimes the enormity of planning a wedding can be daunting for one partner, particularly with the type of budget that you mention but I'm not judging that. Can you ask him to plan the honeymoon or arrange for the suits for his men, just something that he can take responsibility for and feel part of the planning?

Some men don't like to be involved with the details of planning so you can do that part with your girls and family.

Maybe he just needs to feel like it's his day as well and suggesting some things he can take care of will help him feel part of it rather than him feeling (maybe) that it's getting to big for him?

Planning should be a happy time, I'm sorry it's causing arguments.

Whatnext074 Fri 04-Oct-13 00:13:26

Oh, by the way, he might feel it's too much as it's almost a year away. I'm sure come next year, he will pick up the pace and get excited as you are.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 00:18:04

Thanks whatsnext, it's just my girls are in Ireland (bridesmaids) and my mum died a year and a half ago, it's emotional for me. I want to task him with stuff, and I know part of it is the time frame as you said, but he is resistant. I just want to book the venue this side of Christmas and the only time we can go to see the venues is in a fortnight. flights booked. We have selected a few but he's not massively bothered and it's a flight away. We need to be fairly sure as we won't be back in Ireland this year. . . I realise I sound like bridezilla.

Bringbring Fri 04-Oct-13 00:31:47

You need to split jobs, you do venue negotiation, he does transport, one does photographer, the other flowers etc etc.

Vow never to pay full price and negotiate at least 15% off everything. Keep a spreadsheet of all costs and savings. Talk about your non negotiables and what you can get rid of or compromise/save on. Car boot/eBay/ rebudget to cover not getting a loan

By the way, £70 a head sounds fine to me. Lots of people like to boast that their wedding cost 50p but they think nothing about getting a new car every three years or spending £££s on holidays. I like weddings and I had a lovely big one which was fantastic but it was nice to know id negotiated hard and not spent money needlessly. Your dp may not feel the same about weddings but will probably be happier being in control of certain bits.

WhiteandGreen Fri 04-Oct-13 00:41:05

If he does most of the housework and is nice to you in all things other than wedding planning I would forget the wedding, marry him in a registry office and spend ten grand on the holiday of a lifetime.

Otherwise you're setting yourselves up for a year of stress for a day that almost certainly be amazing enough to compensate.

Are you talking about next August? Is stuff already paid for?

Hopasholic Fri 04-Oct-13 01:04:20

I think you might be wise to just take a step back. It's your DF's day too, and you're in danger of turning it into 'your' day rather than yours & DF's day. Remember that it is only one day too and when the music finishes that's your 17k gone. Sorry if I sound negative,blush I don't mean to put a downer on it but if he's not on board with the idea of a grand do with a mass of family he's quite possibly never met then why do it?

Ask him what would be his ideal day and work out a compromise?

There'll hopefully be a way to get what you both want.

MistressDeeCee Fri 04-Oct-13 02:25:40

Every time we talk about the wedding we argue. Tonight he said the cost scares the shit out of him

Such a telling statement. OP, it may be wise for you to listen, and discuss everything with your OH. Its lovely to have a nice big wedding..but this should be a beautiful time for you, it shouldnt be stressful. Its just not worth it. What matters is the 2 of you and your married life together..not a huge wedding thats going to cause stress and arguments. Its about both of you, not just you. & I agree with Hopasholic.

Why not go somewhere nice maybe for a meal, just the 2 of you? Sit down, ask your OH what his ideal day would be. & work out a compromise. Youve said he is a lovely man, and it sounds like you can talk to each other.

Aussiebean Fri 04-Oct-13 03:37:02

This is what we did. We talked about what we liked about weddings and what we didn't. For example neither of us are dancers so we didn't have a first dance now did we cut a cake.

We also talked about what we did really want. Dress for me. A garden. Great lighting relaxed for everyone.

The result was a day both of us loved and yes it still cost a bit but there is no regrets on either side.

Why don't you take a step back, and start with a clean slate. Start talking about each other's ideal day and try to reach a happy medium.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 08:06:57

Thanks for all your comments. I have tried to say things like what would your perfect day be like?and start a fresh. . . It ends I'm rows. I really don't think he wants a registry office/holiday/intimate meal. I really don't. He was married before in a registry office with no one present and I know he wants a party with all our friends experiencing irish hospitality etc. we are planning a humanist ceremony under an oak tree and that is really us.

No money has been spent so it's still ok to change things, I am ok with that. But he is very reluctant to talk about this. In fairness I loose my rag, get upset about it and that's what's making him shut down. I need to be calm. Work is super stressful and it's hard missing my mum in all this.

I am a massive haggler and already have gotten money off things, we drive a 12 year old car and we are not extravagant people. It's just this is pretty standard in my peer group and it's what I thought we both wanted. It's a lot of money but our parents are helping and we will prober by get cash gifts esp from my relatives to pay straight off the loan, if we need one.

I think he is picking up his friends expectations about it, they had cheap weddings ( but have massive houses and posh cars ) it's all about priorities and what's important to us. I thought we felt the same.

bigknickersforthepicker Fri 04-Oct-13 08:09:31

I needed to reply to this. It is not for anyone to judge your budget. BUT your post is very telling. You are organising a wedding that is expected of you. What is normal there.. but it does not sound like this is what your df wants or expected. You are ignoring his needs in favour of match in other irish wedding's. This sounds harsh but I know what this is like. I have been working somthing crazy to pay for out wedding but the wedding we planned was like the weddings we were used to.. three course meals. .speeches etc. Because its what people expect. My df is very nervous and he wanted none of that m I started railroading him. It descended into me doing all the work. . him kicking up a fuss over things but not suggesting alternatives etc. It sarted tearing us apart.

If you carry on this way their won't be a wedding. .and ifthere is you won be starting on good terms. You mention a5k loan.. does your DF really want to take a loan or is it a 'we might just have to!' case closed? Wedding planning spirals out of control quickly. It's very. .very easy to loose sight of the important bits.

It got to breaking point here and we just couldn't Continue. We cancelled. Lost thousands. .it was very difficult. I realised it was a case of loose money or him. We were both scared of spending so much money but wanting a great day.

We elope in a couple of months time. Just us. It took us 6 months to reconnect and relax and repair the damagethat was done and really take stock of wwhat's important. No..I never imagined doing it this way but all the extras were for everyone else. . all that matters is a strong relationship and our vows.. and we need no one and nothing else for that.

I think you need to really sit down and listen to each other. Write lists of what bits are most important and build a day that you are both happy with. Don't ruin such an important day with stress and resentment or nerves.


beepoff Fri 04-Oct-13 08:09:42

I agree with PPs. If you told your DF that some decision he was making scared the shit out of you how would you want him to react?

There's a lot of guilt tied up in spending for some people.

He could also be nervous about the wedding itself. I think you need a good chat - not about delegating tasks but about marriage, what the wedding means to you both, etc.

I had a legal ceremony and lunch with 20 people and another bigger party with 120 the next day. TBH I would have been happy with just the legal ceremony slightly tweaked in hindsight. It cost less than £500. And my car's 10 years old ;)

beepoff Fri 04-Oct-13 08:13:44

Just wanted to add - if he's been married before maybe those demons are raising their heads?

Also just to say you don't sound like a bridezilla. Weddings and their planning are often stressful.

Whocansay Fri 04-Oct-13 08:14:26

Yes, it IS all about priorities. What's more important to you - an expensive party or a marriage? You appear to want the big circus wedding and he doesn't. If you're having big rows at this stage you may end up without a groom, unless you're prepared to actually listen to him without your Bridezilla ears on.

HandragsAndGladbags Fri 04-Oct-13 08:25:01

Ask him if there is anything he would like to organise, DH did music. He was happy with music, he didn't care about colour schemes or flowers or invites, but he did care about music.

I gave him 2 choices of everything I liked and he picked his favourite so we did make the choices together sort of.

HandragsAndGladbags Fri 04-Oct-13 08:26:11

Totally agree with beepoff's second post.

mrswalker13 Fri 04-Oct-13 08:54:40

Hello OP,

Couple of direct responses: 120 isn't a huge wedding. I've been to three this year (my own plus two friends) and all were that as a minimum... I'm Scottish, the friends both London girls.

I do think £70 a head sounds a lot. I don't know what expectations are in your circle but we had a buffet not a formal sit down meal; again, so did both my friends. We all still had beautiful tables etc but not the cost of waiting staff etc so I reckon you could save there. But...

You say you feel like it's turning into your wedding not what you both want. Yet you've already made some major decisions that mean it is already your day: the location for a start. I don't mean that as a criticism and I'm sure your DP wouldn't have agreed if he wasn't happy but I do think that means you ought to be doing most of the organising. You're the local, he's not therefore you're in a much better position to organise, negotiate etc. You mentioned your girls - can they help? Our reception was in the village where my family live so my sister was able to get us a good deal on the hall because she's on the gala committee, that sort of thing. Our total cost was £7000.

As others have already posted, the most important thing is you and your DP getting married, not the party you're throwing for others. People want to be part of your day because they love you, not for 1/2 bottle of fizz per head.

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Fri 04-Oct-13 09:00:21

Why do you NEED a five-course meal? Couldn't you have three courses?

It is sounding from your postings very much about what YOU want or what you think OTHER people are expecting and your DP isn't really being heard. It IS turning into YOUR wedding day, as you say it feels in your original post.

lemonstartree Fri 04-Oct-13 09:05:30

its ONE day. ONE day.

You want to spend £17 K on ONE DAY...

listen to what he is telling you. Listen and don't talk. Then find a compromise. This is good training for marriage.

IamGluezilla Fri 04-Oct-13 09:06:46

I've been in your position and this is how I played it.
1. Keep discussions about wedding to a fixed time (e.g. 90 minutes on a Wesnesday evening)
2. Keep discussion action/decision focused- no vague objections permitted only concrete proposals for yes/decision. So "the money scared me" has to be followed with an "I want to do X Y or Z instead"
3. On your visits to Ireland have a plan of what you need to see and decide. Be decisive.
4. The tooth sucking friends need to get short shrift and a refocus on Your-Wedding.

BadLad Fri 04-Oct-13 09:07:43

I don't know your financial position but I baulked twice reading your OP. First was at the 17 thousand budget and then again at the 5 thousand loan.

Unless at least one of you is very well-paid and secure at work that amount seems like madness to me, and your DH may well be of the same opinion. OK, you have a home (all paid off) but how long would it take you to save that amount? All for one day!

You aren't being bridezilla or even wrong, necessarily but I can see your STBDH's point.

Preciousbane Fri 04-Oct-13 09:12:24

I will never understand large amounts spent on wedding so I'm with your fiancée.

DH and I planned most of our wedding together but I did take the lead, we agreed on the budget first though. A proper renegotiation needs to take place. Listen to him when he says he does not want to spend that amount of money.

I say balls to peer pressure.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 04-Oct-13 09:13:42

" feeling it's turning into my wedding, not ours."

Which, be honest, it is. He may be fully on board with the idea of getting married... I'm not seeing doubts on his part. But the ceremonial/party aspect is your dream and the friction is almost certainly being caused because you want him to be enthusiastic about vol-au-vents and table decorations a year ahead of schedule when he isn't. (Few straight men are) If you know what you want how about telling him that you'll plan the whole thing, bring it in under budget, and he just has to show up on the day in a suit? Gush about wedding planning with your girlfriends instead?

RegTheMonkey Fri 04-Oct-13 09:18:16

If people have £17k to spend on one day - a day which passes in a complete whirl - then it's obviously their business to spend that money on one day. However, if you are borrowing here and there, taking cash gifts in order to pay for it, then I think that's a bit off. I also think men (sorry for the gross generalisation and stereotyping) find it all a bit of a faff in the early stages and frankly boring. They get keener nearer the day. I think you have to either just get on with it and present him with a fait a compli, and shut up about in the process, thus avoiding rows, OR you tell him frankly that you don't want a row, but if he doesn't want to be involved in the process he can't complain and does he have any alternative suggestions which he would be happier about?

BadLad Fri 04-Oct-13 09:21:06

Reg, I agree completely that the cost is the couple's business and theirs alone.

But if the cost "scares the shit out of" one of them, a fait accompli is a bad idea.

Ladame Fri 04-Oct-13 09:24:00

I agree with Lemonstartree Seventeen thousand pounds on one day? If it's stressful now, it will get worse. Imagine in a year's time, after all the stress and arguments, if something doesn't go to plan? It's too much investment IMO. I had a friend (don't we all) who spent an enormous amount on her day and didn't enjoy it because one or two details weren't perfect. I don't ever understand why the wedding is so important. It's the marriage which should take precedence and your relationship is already suffering. Listen to him now, otherwise resentment (on your part) and stress and being backed into a corner (on his part) might mean that there won't be a wedding. Sorry to sound harsh.

IamGluezilla Fri 04-Oct-13 09:25:11

I genuinely can't find cheaper that isn't a hotel he has said is horrid.

Sounds like he wants what has been planned just in denial about what that involves.

IamGluezilla Fri 04-Oct-13 09:27:20

I genuinely can't find cheaper that isn't a hotel he has said is horrid.

Sounds like he wants what has been planned just in denial about what that involves.

nobutreally Fri 04-Oct-13 09:39:28

Oh, OP - wedding planning is, sadly, not always the exciting romatic thing we want it to be - you have my sympathy.

But, I agree with others - you need to take a breath, get some perspective and listen to your DP. He's a good bloke, and he's telling you this isn't working for him. The most important thing is that the day works for you two. Not your families or friends. Go for a long walk to the top of a hill. And then close your eyes, keep absolutely schtum, and get him to describe your wedding day to you. I bet it'll sound amazing. Then you do the same. Start again from there.

All of that said ... ime, brides often do end up doing a lot of the planning - my dh is the most domesticated bloke you could ever meet - and his mum is a florist, and when we got married I was holding down a high pressured, long hours job, and his was much more student-y. He did loads of organising when we got married, but lots of things were of no interest to him. So I did those, and he took the lead on things he was interested in. Like sorting out the Etype Jag, and the Frog eye Sprite which are a vital part of any wedding....!

I'm not going to get into budget - you've had lots of good advice there - but do be sure that whatever you are paying is something you both want, or I you can be sure it'll cause tensions further down the line.

LtEveDallas Fri 04-Oct-13 09:42:53

I think £70 a head is HUGE, and I'm not sure why anyone needs a 5 course meal.

I think if you can do it without resorting to loans, then that is the way ahead. My whole day cost less than the 5K you may 'add' to your budget - and that was with 102 guests.

With your comment about "pretty standard in my peer group" I can't help but think you are doing this in a 'keeping up with the Joneses' way. It doesn't matter what your peers do or did, it's about marrying your DP, spending the rest of your life together, being happy. The wedding is secondary, and could be done much cheaper.

If you drive a 12 year old car, maybe your fiancee would rather spend a 5K loan on a better/more reliable/newer car than a one day party?

FunnyRunner Fri 04-Oct-13 09:43:49

Sympathy OP. Weddings are a big deal in Ireland and the work always seems to fall on the bride.

DH was the one who wanted a traditional white wedding - I would happily have absconded overseas. But I ended up having to organise it and the costs were huge. We were in a position that we could both afford it but I remember being hugely stressed trying to plan everything. It helped that DH was grateful that I was doing most of the grunt work and was also happy to pay for anything I wanted (within reason)!

Maybe you need to agree to have a few weeks without ANY wedding talk, just to clear the air. At the end of it all, our wedding was a brilliant day which will stay with me forever (I was surprised how brill it was as I'm not a 'wedding person') but it IS a huge event to plan. It is stressful. You need to have a few weeks wedding free then tell your DF you have to agree on some key things - crucially the budget, the date and the venue. Everything else is negotiable.

For the record though, I would definitely not take out a loan. How horrible to be paying it back when the wedding is over. But I am quite old fashioned about living within my means.

bigknickersforthepicker Fri 04-Oct-13 09:50:19

there is NOTHING worse than paying something off 18 months on that your not still enjoying.. at-least you'd still be driving a car for example. My boss said they are still paying theirs off 5 years later and her tone said it all.

try to see sense.

£70 a head is way too much (Ireland has also felt great pressures from the credit crunch) and no-one needs a five course meal.

You both want a great day; this is patently not the way to go about it.
I would think that if you looked at the guest list again it could be slashed further; who exactly are these 120 invited guests?. Do you or he actually see more than a tenth of these people regularly?.

This is madness and out of control; no wonder your DP is getting cold feet about the whole juggernaut now because this is what this wedding day (and it is just one day after all) fast becoming.

None of this squares either with your planned humanist ceremony under an oak tree does it?.

EvenBetter Fri 04-Oct-13 10:14:44

£70 per head isn't tooooo bad, but no one needs a five course meal. Two courses and then some cake would do fine. Even if people has the appetite to eat five courses, most wouldn't be too keen on the sheer amount of time it would take slumped at a table, to consume it all.
Or even better, a buffet. We had a buffer with a choice of three meals, and loads of sides. They provided plates, cutlery, tablecloths etc. and chips at 11pm for about £20 a head (in Ireland)

Just have a clear conversation,-as everyone has suggested, he's scared of the costs but doesn't want cheaper options?! Time to put on his big boy pants and make some decisions!
It's popular on mumsnet to have competitive tales of how shit your wedding was because obviously it means your marriage is so much stronger if you wore jeans, only did it for legal reasons and ate a Burger King afterwards hmm
Lots of people don't know how much wedding things cost, the average wedding now costs £21,000. That's not 'princesses' with swans and fireworks, just a normal wedding with guests, so I don't think your budget is that bad.

Grumblelion Fri 04-Oct-13 10:15:23

One of the most important things in a marriage is you both being able to compromise on occasion - and yet it does sound a bit like your DP is just being asked to go along with a wedding that doesn't quite suit him because that's what you (and I have no doubt other family members!) want.

The cost of the wedding clearly worries him a lot and maybe if that could be addressed he might feel a bit happier about contributing to other aspects of the day. How about a smaller ceremony and sit down meal for family & close friends and then a big party for extended family & friends that evening? That will make a massive difference to your budget straight away. I appreciate that it might not be the usual approach in Ireland but it's your and his day so you do what's right for the two of you and sod "the usual way". Also as others have said, ask him if there's any aspects he would like to take charge of - my DH dealt with suits for him & BM/Dad's and sorted out the music playlist for the evening. I waved bridesmaids dresses/flower stuff under his nose as a courtesy in case he hated anything but didn't really expect him to engage with stuff like that otherwise.

Having said that, if you're asking him for alternatives that he'd be happier with, he needs to pull his weight with finding them, not just decide he doesn't like things the way they are. If he has concerns, he needs to be specific about them and be prepared to offer practical solutions - ask him "ok, you don't want that, fine. What would you prefer?"

itried Fri 04-Oct-13 10:16:39

Is that £70 a head or £70 plus VAT?

queenbitchapparently Fri 04-Oct-13 10:37:33

I am with your other half on this one. 17k is a massive amount to spend on one day.
We are getting married next year and it is costing us 3-5 grand and I baulk at paying that much if I am honest.
But that is including 3 course meal arrival drinks and exclusive hire of a beautiful manor house.
My sister blew her OH's inheritance on her wedding, I was clutching my hand in the background thinking that's a deposit on a house.
The dress, fair do's spend what you like on that but wow 17 grand.
Ask yourself is getting married about being married or about the wedding.
Though I do want a nice day for us and the people coming, I want no stress and hassle more.
I want to wake up the morning of the wedding with mu OH and be smiling and happy.
Not freaking out because the table napkins are the wrong colour iyswim.
Is one day worth the stress you are already suffering from and strain it is putting on you both.
My advice scale it back ireland is in the middle of a massive recession you should be able to get amazing deals.
When you mention weddings everything become at least 20% more expensive.
I know it is easy to get caught up in it all.
We were looking at wedding cars at a fair the other day and I nearly hired 2 cars at over a grand until I hit myself about the head. A grand for a 15minute trip! !!
Any way good luck and try to not let wedding perfectionism get to you.

queenbitchapparently Fri 04-Oct-13 10:45:04

21 grand is only the norm because people are competitive about weddings and people let wedding trappings come at rip off prices and still pay it
That is a ridiculously high amount to pay for one "perfect day"
900 pound for a photographer who takes the same type of pictures at 100 other weddings over the year and you have to feed them. No way!

momb Fri 04-Oct-13 11:13:23

OP. You are on to a loser talking about weddings generally on MN because there are two firm camps: the 'it's far too much money you are clearly mad' camp and the 'how dare they invite me to a wedding and it not be for the whole day and not including everything that may be required for my comfort' camp.
I would challenge anyone, wedding or otherwise, to find canapes and welcome drinks, a sit down meal with wine, champers for the toasts plus a buffet for the evening for £70. It's a great deal. If there is a family expectation that you invite family members and they are putting money in to the wedding then their wishes count too.
So that's 8.4K.
For that you get a great venue and enough food and drink for the comfort of your guests. I'm not sure where the additional 8.6K is coming from:
1K ceremony (that's based an humanist celebrant in our area)
500 rings
500 dress (you can get a really lovely dress for 500 or indeed much less)
500 suits
200 cake
200 room dressing (table centres etc)?
Linens and stuff can add up if it isn't included in your venue cost.
500 DJ

Of course there's more I haven't counted, but honestly the £6 each gatefold invitations are not necessary. thousands on floristry is not necessary. If you get the comfort of your guests right (and it sounds like you are) then everyone will have a great day and that is what matters.

You know that you need to have the conversation with your fiance about what it is that scares him. You may well argue, but better now than later. I honestly think that you can bring in this wedding without the loan. Getting it down to 12K or thereabouts is amazing value for a wedding whcih your Irish family will expect and you can both remember fondly (ie without debt hanging over you). That challenge may well be one he's prepared to engage in with you. Good luck

LtEveDallas Fri 04-Oct-13 11:21:17

Why not have the ceremony later in the day, thereby negating the need for 2 lots of food? If you were married at, say 1600, you could have a sit down meal at 1800, that prob wouldn't be finished until 2000, maybe later if 5 courses.

If you then need to feed guests later (although I can't really see it) you could do bacon butties at midnight!

Or why not go for a buffet or BBQ option - that fits better with your humanist / simple / under a tree ceremony.

KhunZhoop Fri 04-Oct-13 11:46:47

Ask yourself why you're getting angry with him when you try to discuss it, this is probably why he's refusing to discuss it with you - he's afraid you're going to flare up everytime.

PatriciaHolm Fri 04-Oct-13 12:10:49

It sounds like he feels swept away by it all. You have what sound like fairly concrete plans, and he's feeling as if it's all just too much, too expensive, too much planning, too many people; but has never really given any thought to his wedding day so has no real suggestions to make. Essentially he wants to get married to you but he's got no real idea of the planning required for any sort of wedding that involves a number of guests. He probably thought you could just ring up a book a nice party and that would be the end of the planning. The concept of booking things a year in advance and spending 17k is completely alien.

You need to pick a quiet, peaceful time to revisit the idea from scratch. Maybe book a nice dinner out and suggest talking about the plans from the ground up again. You won't get into an argument there, and hopefully you can convince him you won't get wound up and shout. You also need to be prepared for him to say that he isn't prepared to spend £17k on it; just because your friends have doesn't mean you have to, and going into debt for it sounds insane.

happyyonisleepyyoni Fri 04-Oct-13 12:48:34

Very briefly, your DP needs to come up with an alternative suggestion if he is not happy with yours.

It's very easy to sit on the sidelines and pick holes, a lot harder to actually do the work.

If he can't be bothered but isn't happy with what you have researched then what does that say?

Mrsjaffacake Fri 04-Oct-13 13:38:51

Can you afford a lavish wedding??!

MimiSunshine Fri 04-Oct-13 14:29:49

To me it sounds like you both agreed the kind of wedding you wanted (location, style, ceremony etc) but now the costs have been added up he's panicking.
And to be honest I'm not surprised you bed up shouting, I'd get really hacked off if things were shot down with no alternative suggestion provided.

So, speak to him, tell you'd like to talk about the wedding on Saturday afternoon. Give him notice on the conversation and say you promise not to shout if he can promise to organise his thoughts before then. Then don't talk about it all until then.

When you sit down start off with "do you still want to get married?" Then progress through:
In Ireland or elsewhere?
With the people we've got on the guest list or cut down?
Is the money you've agreed you are comfortably able to save each month still the case (and agree not to disguss budget within anyone else)?

Work through a list of things you would both like, you've already done this but pretend you haven't and then like another poster said, divvy up the list of things to book and organise.
He sounds like he needs ownership of things to feel its worth the money otherwise it's just £17k to spend all at once.

My OH can be a bit like this, I suggested a holiday that was all paid for upfront and quite a bit of money, he was a bit aghast but then I asked him how much did our last holiday cost (could vaguely remember but wanted him to remember) and how much did we take each in spending money.
It came to the same amount and suddenly he was quote keen on the idea

bigknickersforthepicker Fri 04-Oct-13 14:37:39

why don't you get married the following year for extra saving time than take out a loan??

Also just a note to the previous poster who said you'd be hard pushed to find the same for less than £70. I was offered the same for £57.99 PH at a beautiful well-to-do venue.

ThePinkOcelot Fri 04-Oct-13 15:00:43

I think his friends have the right idea tbh. Nice big houses and flash cars! These things last longer than 1 day!
You can still have a lovely day at a fraction of that cost. Think about it, what is more important, the wedding or the marriage?!

my god, as long as I live I will never understand how loving someone and hoping to spend the rest of your lives together translates into "borrowing and scrimping to spend seventeen thousand pounds on one day"

will now leave thread as I have nothing useful to add to sensible advice of previous posters. good luck with your marriage (the bit that lasts) smile

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 16:56:38

Hi again, thanks for the comments.

Its good to hear peoples opinions but just to make it really clear,in general, we make decisions together and talk things through. So I am very sure I am not projecting "my wedding' preconceptions on him.Yes there are some norms, such as asking my aunts and uncles,but he wants to ask his, it just happens I have more.

Also, a buffet wouldn't be cheaper in this instance, I was talking about the 5 course thing in relation to the package which we both think is actually really good. We could have a 3 course meal and less booze with massive venue hire for double the price. This is the only non-hotel that I can find which doesn't charge venue hire. I have spend so long trawling that I am very sure of this. The only cheaper option is less people or a hotel which he definitely wants even less then me. by Irish standards this is an alternative wedding.

He definitely wants an Irish wedding as we think it will be fun for the brits, and hence we want the wine to be free flowing , good food and music as people have travelled to join us. This we also agree on.

I asked him this morning is it the money thats the worry if so we can work on that. Or the numbers and he said no, he wants the people there we have selected and he wants the shin dig etc its just the tensions that come up that are the problem when we talk about it.

To summarise the problem is me, us arguing, not the cost or format of the day. My problem is I feel he shuts down (defence mechanism), its left to me to plan, and I am worried its becoming more me then him. There have been moments of real sharing when we talked about the food and were making up fun menus or dancing last night to try out music but when we try to formally talk i think he changes subject.

My decision is this. I bought a card to write and say I am really sorry for being so tense. and some chocolate for him. I am going to go home and be lovely to him, try to erase the bits where I have felt hurt ( he ignored me all night) and forget everything until we go to Ireland in a fortnight and stay at the venue and try the food. Make that a bit of a romantic get away and also enjoy seeing my family to show them the ring etc... Hopefully he will see I am more relaxed and want to get more excited about things.

Finally the marriage is my priority. I certainly am not risking loosing my partner, I do love and listen to him, if i didn't i wouldn't be here asking for advice. I want his wedding day to be amazing for him. and for both of us. I don't want a big circus wedding by any means, i want a familial romantic and loving wedding and I am not implying that spending x amount gets you that.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 17:02:25

I have to say i feel that peoples judgements on the cost associated is a little unfair. We are not scrimping and saving and borrowing. We are saving a reasonable amount per month and our parents have asked can they help out. I have just gotten some extra hours which should add up to the difference so no need to borrow money. Whats wrong with wanting to spend it on our wedding of thats what we want? lots of people buy flash cars, are mortgaged to the hilt, go on epic holidays. Its about priorities and this is one for us.

BTW its 70 Euro not pounds and I am sure you can find better deals in the UK with more competition. I am also having all my friends grow the flowers, invites made by another friend, no wedding cake. We are prioritising certain parts not trying to be flash.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 17:15:12

The best wedding I was ever at was a marquee in a field in Ireland. unfortunately I cant find a field from the UK, and marquees are shit loads of money, I have tried high and low to find a village hall type affair. It doesn't exist. This is really the set up we want, and the number of courses wont make a difference.Its a deal, which i have haggled on. I asked them about taking out the evening food, but I think people will be starving by midnight with a load of booze a few sandwiches isn't to much to ask. Providing our own wine is not going to make it cheaper either.

The point is, as one poster said, he is sitting on the sideline picking holes, but not saying what he would like to change or do differently. I genuinely think he thought it would be simple but planning this shit from a different country isn't easy.

Mrsjaffacake Fri 04-Oct-13 17:21:35

Is it possible that this wedding has taken over your relationship and he is just overwhelmed by everything to do with the wedding not just the cost? You say he has been married before is that another factor for him in that he feels huge pressure to get this marriage right??

Finally can you offload to friends to get help or even just to get things off your chest? Perhaps a fellow bride to be??

Sounds like for whatever reason he is stressed out. You need to find out why??!

LtEveDallas Fri 04-Oct-13 17:24:59

Ammature, sorry if you feel got at, but I am just astounded at the cost. I think £12k is too much as it is, let alone £17k. But if you can afford it, and it's what you want, then who am I to judge? So apologies.

I hear your pain about trying to organise from another country. I was in Germany (with DH in NI) trying to plan our wedding in the Midlands, with most of our friends in Germany, my family down south and DH family in N Wales! It was a testing time <<understatement>>

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 17:25:11

Hi previous marriage was when he lived in abroad, while he loved the women it was kinda a visa thing. He is older then me, in his 40s which is why HE wants to get married next year and not a year later. As we want to have a family etc.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 17:29:10

I do feel a bit got at, the cost is our business and was more helping for advice about dealing with the emotions. I wish i never said he said he was shitting it, of course the next morning he said its nothing to do with the cost. . .

EllieQ Fri 04-Oct-13 19:14:48

Having read your latest posts, I think he is probably feeling overwhelmed at all the wedding planning discussions, if you're not worried about the cost (though I agree with previous posters that getting a £5k loan out when you have a fairly decent budget of £12k seems a bit odd).

I know that DH and I had a lot of wedding planning arguments and we had a small wedding (registry office, meal afterwards, only 40 guests), and were splitting the work between us. It is strange how it takes over your life and tiny things seem hugely important. Looking back, stuff like the design of the invites hardly matter now, what matters is the memories of the day smile

However, you ending up shouting at him when you're trying to discuss it isn't a good sign. Are you being horribly overbearing about it, or are you reacting to him shutting down and refusing to talk about it? Can he articulate what's wrong, or not? The things that stand out to me are the fact the wedding is in Ireland - are most of the 120 guests your friends and family? One reason I wanted a small wedding is that my family is small while DH's family is much bigger - I had visions of my side of the registry office being empty while his was overflowing!

So, it might be worth having a discussion about the wedding basics (with you trying to stay calm) instead of getting into details like the venue, and see how that goes.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 20:15:43

We won't need to get a loan, that's a back up and the point is about how we are relating. The guest list has been worked to be quite equal for example he gets cousins and I don't. I'm not a horribly over bearing person though I accept I have been doing loads of stuff compared to him doing very little. Which is frustrating. If he was to say aww babe you've worked your arse off thank you, but I'd love to change this detail I would be so cool about that. But instead he says nothing and I have no idea where I am going. Communication has broken down and that's the problem. Not the finance.

MissStrawberry Fri 04-Oct-13 20:27:42

It really is a ridiculous amount of money to spend on one day.

Just because you have the money (though you don't really if you are getting a loan for £5k) doesn't mean you have to spend it.

You really shouldn't be arguing over your wedding and shouting at him. It is supposed to be exciting and fun to plan. Not full of angst and disagreements.

DH and I were married in 1999. We agreed on everything and did as much as possibly together. We had no budget and in the end the whole thing came to about £5k. We had a reception, free bar, honeymoon suite, nice car to Church and reception then another from reception to hotel, honeymoon for 10 nights, photographer but didn't have an evening do which is ££££ as DH wanted us to have time just for us.

I feel that it becomes all about the fancy party and matching seat covers and not about a man and woman becoming husband and wife.

You need to listen to each other as organising a wedding is a piece of cake due to the pressures that having kids will bring when you are knackered and barely have time to pee in peace and if you are arguing over things that don't matter what will you do about the things that do?

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 21:15:52

Wow I think that is extremely unfair. Because we argue about this we won't cope with children? I was asking for advice not on the budget of our wedding but how to deal with tensions arising which is down to communication since I think I made it pretty clear he is on board with the cost. Just because you don't agree doesn't mean our marriages less valid then people who have a cheaper wedding. We have guests coming from the UK, and USA we can hardly not have food and since it's not a religious affair we won't be having a church moment. What should we do invite people under the tree for 20 mins and then say see yeah!

Thurlow Fri 04-Oct-13 21:29:44

I'd apologise to your DP for getting stressed and/or angry about the wedding, but explain that him questioning an aspect without suggesting an alternative is one of the things that is really frustrating you.

Can you maybe decide on several things that he has an issue with, and ask him to look for alternatives and have another chat about it in a week or so?

(Oh, and it's your money - if 17k is affordable to you, spend it)

FunnyRunner Fri 04-Oct-13 21:39:11

OP ignore the people who say it's madness to spend that much money on one day. It is YOUR hard earned money. If you want to bake it in a pie it's up to you.

And FWIW I was more stressed about planning the wedding than I was after having baby. But that's because I can barely plan a piss up in a brewery, never mind the whole shebang. Whereas at least with the baby stuff you just kind of go with the flow grin

AuntPittypat Fri 04-Oct-13 21:40:18

I think you're getting some unfair flack here, OP. Don't take it to heart. It sounds like you and your DP are planning exactly the sort of wedding you both want - and I think it sounds fab btw! I agree that you should probably just relax about it for a while - other than the venue(s), there is probably very little else which NEEDS to be organised or even discussed at this point so maybe once you've confirmed the venue you should both take a bit of a break from wedding stuff for a few weeks...

TombOfMummyBeerest Fri 04-Oct-13 21:40:55

OP, I feel your pain. I'm Canadian, but my family is Italian. Our wedding was 200 people.

Yep. 200. And that was small for my family.

Wedding planning was stressful for DH and I, simply because there's a lot to do for a lot of people. There were many, many times we both wondered what the point was.

So we made a clear pact-it's one day, and our day.

So we prioritized what we both needed, wanted, and didn't agree on. We found that things definitely changed as time went on and we discussed things. And, after assessing things, we found alternatives for a lot of traditions.

Also, I take it you just got engaged. Enjoy that! The rest will follow.

MimiSunshine Fri 04-Oct-13 21:41:57

Communication is key, try not to snap when he shuts down and ask him what he'd prefer but make it clear he has to give an opinion.

MissStrawberry your wedding was nearly a decade and a half ago! and I'm guessing not in Ireland, it's really not comparable. The OP has said the money is affordable for them so who cares if anyone else thinks its a lot. To someone else it will seem like pennies,

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 21:46:08

Thank you to the last few posters, ultimately the wedding some people have mentioned is not the wedding either of us want. This one is and if it costs money that's ok because we are throwing a party for people and that's what weddings are about to us. A bloody great party to celebrate a wonderful moment in our lives, with people we love as witnesses. with a bloody expensive dress, shit hot photos to show our kids and plenty of vino! It's our money, we are supported by our parents. What's the problem? If people don't like the cost they should have the wedding they want. I came for advice about the arguments which it turns out, my other half has said are NOT about he money, they are about me. And how stressed I've gotten about it all. And my snapping. I'm snapping because he bs uptight and not offering constructive solutions. Anyone would find that Annoying I think.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 21:49:01

Thank you mimisunshine, i can't see how her wedding is compatible, and I don't understand what the difference between a reception and evening do is?

LtEveDallas Fri 04-Oct-13 22:04:36

Reception straight after the wedding, finishes before 1800. Evening 'do' starts about 1930.

When we got married we had our ceremony as late as possible (1630 in England) so that we went straight through. It was ace. No rushing about in the morning, all our guests had leisurely travel to the venue and could check into their rooms to get changed etc, no worries about feeding people at lunch and dinner and there were no breaks or awkward moments like I have seen at other weddings.

It's a good way to save money, yes, but for us the main thing was trying to make the day more 'fluid' for guests that were travelling from overseas etc.

zippey Fri 04-Oct-13 22:11:06

I think you should listen to your partner when he says that he is worried about the costs.

Also, if this is a cause for arguments and stress, why not postpone for another year or two? If you live one another now, you will still be in live two years from now.

eurochick Fri 04-Oct-13 22:12:11

If its what you want, then go for it, but that's "you" plural. It doesn't sound like it's what your fiancé wants. I would have been in his camp, personally. I've been to some showy Irish weddings and the wedding is the only time certain family members are seen. I had fun, but I'd never met the bride and groom before the wedding or seen them since! I can't believe they spent the money on having me there (as the partner of a cousin or whatever) but it seemed to be expected.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 22:13:46

The ceremony will be 3pm and meal about 6pm. It was STBH idea to get married in a year because he is in his 40s and wants a family once we are married.

LaydeeC Fri 04-Oct-13 22:21:30

this isn't really linked to your op but really just interested in the humanist side of your wedding - is it a legal ceremony in Ireland? I know it is in some countries but didn't know it was in Ireland

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 22:25:55

The law changed very very recently and it's now legal! Delighted as STBH is an official member of the British Humanist Ass. And we are both atheists. This is my fav part and so excited about exchanging our own vows with friends playing music and doing it outside. Hope the weather sticks. Another reason we need the house as a back up ... Thanks for asking

EllieQ Fri 04-Oct-13 22:33:07

OP do you feel that you have to make more of an effort with the wedding because you're having a humanist ceremony rather than a church wedding? Are your family religious, or expect you to have a traditional church wedding despite not being religious?

While the comment about not coping with children seems a bit harsh, I think the poster was making a valid point - if you're not able to discuss this (he criticises but won't offer suggestions, you end up shouting), how will you cope with other stressful discussions?

Have you told him you want him to offer alternatives when he criticises something?

TombOfMummyBeerest Fri 04-Oct-13 22:41:36

Your timeline sounds good to me...similar to ours. Am I right in assuming that Aug. 14 2014 is a Saturday?

If I may suggest a Friday evening wedding, you won't believe the price difference.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 22:44:16

Religious aspect has nothing to do with this,but a valid point. It's not even a consideration as we are not believers. We are doing what suits us.

It's not like we've never had conflicts to overcome, we've been through plenty, my mothers death, renovating a home,the possibility I might have fertility problems, to know we can resolve conflicts and live each other. I'm sure we will be good parents regardless of the fact we have found this tricky...and I have asked him to come up with alternatives. It seems he likes the ideas and plans. What he is saying tonight. TBH I think he is very down ATM about his job etc and this is an additional pressure that he doesn't want to deal with and extra such as a wedding which needs planning.

ammature Fri 04-Oct-13 22:45:37

I'll speak to them about a Friday but I think it might be easier for people travelling? Need to check it out thanks x

beepoff Fri 04-Oct-13 23:19:51

What else have you got going on in your lives apart from the wedding planning at the moment? Or is it starting to take over?

Can I suggest you take a break after the trip, a total ban on wedding talk for a fortnight? Then reintroduce a "wedding night" conversation once a week until a month or two before the wedding. All other nights no wedding talk unless urgent.

Kundry Fri 04-Oct-13 23:51:15

SO if it really isn't cost, is it the wedding planning? Because generally men are not that interested.

DH and I agreed what we wanted from a wedding and costs (both for items eg venue, rough figure for flowers, cost per head for meal) but the only thing he did by himself was write his speech.

We picked the music, readings, venue, food and wine together. But bridesmaids outfits, flowers, decor, photographer, invites etc etc he couldn't really work up an interest in. I think he just smiled benignly while I wittered on.

It sounds like you both want the same sort of wedding which is great. Unfortunately there probably isn't much mileage in feeling aggrieved he isn't pulling his weight - he is pulling average man weight.

Can you give him things to do which he might be interested in like the humanist ceremony?

If he really is concerned about cost, agreeing costs of individual bits at a time may be easier to cope with than 'the whole wedding' which risks a row as it is so overwhelming. If it helps I found it easier to just not have stuff than try to do it on the cheap eg did my own hair and makeup after practising watching youtube videos, scrapped favours, stayed at venue overnight so didn't need a car - one night stay was cheaper than the limo etc. We didn't want to compromise on the bits we thought were important such as food quality and venue.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Sat 05-Oct-13 01:33:21

I don't care how much anyone spends on their wedding day that's up to them. I wonder if after the hard work and planning involved in setting up home his instinct is to worry

How much
What's next

Of course he loves you and perhaps in a fortnight he'll fly over with you and agree it's a fabulous venue and the the ideas you put forward are amazing.

To be fair unless alternative arrangements are also on the table it is sounding like a done deal. He is getting twitchy and he's voiced his opinion. He has realised you have your heart set on how that day will go.

I am not trying to trap you. Looking back at the decisions taken regarding the house did he really have a say? Step by step sounds an almighty long deliberation. Debating takes energy and in the nicest possible way some partners have more staying power when it comes to weighing up "choices".

Sometimes when we say Oh well go on if you don't like it, you pick something! we don't mean you choose and I'll say yes. Your fiance might be making a token effort at digging his heels in but allow him that chance.

Friday is a great idea btw - people who can't get time off will at least be glad to be invited and okay numbers go down or if they can't afford it in any case, the day of the week will be a face-saving excuse.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Sat 05-Oct-13 01:38:44

Sorry, put house instead of home.

Driz Sat 05-Oct-13 01:44:45

He doesn't sound keen. I don't blame him, weddings are BORING. It doesn't mean he doesn't want to get married to you, but he just isn't interested in the boring minutiae of wedding planning. If you want the big wedding, then enjoy it, but don't expect everyone to be so enthused, it isn't a measure of his love for you!

Driz Sat 05-Oct-13 01:46:09

Although he does have a point about the cost, surely there are better ways to spend 17K?

Grumblelion Sat 05-Oct-13 08:11:54

Just come back to this. That's great if your other half had clarified that cost isn't an issue - however in your original post you clearly stated it was a problem for him so not sure why you're getting so upset when people suggested scaling things back a bit. Based on your OP, that was sensible advice. Of course it's entirely up to the two of you how much to budget for your wedding and you don't have to justify it but I'm just wondering if you get as defensive with him when you try to discuss things? And I wouldn't totally blame you as it doen't sound like he's being super helpful with offering alternatives to your hard work.

BUT I would wholeheartedly agree with Kundry above that you may need to manage your expectations of how interested he will be about the finer details. I have never met a man who gave a shit about the colour of chair covers, shades of bridesmaid dress etc. The main thing for them is to marry you & have a bloody good party after. Yes, it is frustrating when you want to include them but that's just the way it is. I would ask him what the most important parts of the day are for him and whether he's happy for you to just get on with the bits he's not interested in. However, also (gently!) point out that organising a big party from another country is a lot of work and you need his help - let him pick what he wants to get involved/take the lead in

ApocalypseThen Sat 05-Oct-13 08:59:15

OP, I'm Irish too, just had a wedding oddly like yours (same number of people, same price per head). Don't let those who are competitive about not spending or who think that because you had a normal wedding, you don't care about your marriage. You won't hear anyone say that at home.

Me and the old ball and chain had a blast at our wedding and so did the family and friends. It's a once off, it's worth it.

But I never saw/heard of a buffet. Just don't, even if you found a place that does that, guests won't like it. It's really not worth the savings, and guests have expectations. Most will give pretty shocking gifts based on the norm so give them what they want.

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 09:48:59

Thanks apocalypse, your right, people have expectations, and I know everyone says it's "our day" but on our day I don't want to feel like every single person, who is there, who has traveled ( everyone will be travelling a bit) is either hungry, bored, or feeling like they gave us a generous gift and are getting shit food. It's reality. Plus this is what we want for ourselves, we are relatively generous people I think. Irish weddings seems different to those I the uk I've been to, which is why we want to have it in Ireland.

Yes I prob get a bit defensive with him, when for example the guest list was 140 I took 20 of my people off and he was still complaining... What do you say then? I've reduced it to the agreed number. What's the issue? It's stuff like that and NOT colour schemes ... Seriously. I don't have one! My family are growing wild flowers, it told the bridesmaid to choose what they feel amazing in, I hate chair covers... It's things like, Please can you call your friend to ask his son (your godson) to be pageboy and double check so I can ensure we have enough. Rooms at the actual venue, and stuff like where else should we see while in Ireland. It is not questions about trivial crap. I recognize he has shown higher levels of interest then most men, but this level of shutting down is frankly cold. Not like him.

The reason I am being defensive to posters about the cost is because I am being criticized heavily for OUR choice, while it's being implied that I am more interested in my wedding then my marriage, that I won't be able to deal with the stress of children and frankly that's really hurtful. if I didn't care I wouldn't be here asking for advice about dealing with the conflict, not how to reduce the cost.

Finally yes he said was was worried about the cost yesterday, but has said that's not what's upset him, it's the arguments. Which I am trying to deal with. For the record I think he is just anxious about everything right now, going through a rough patch as last night he was really upset about something else. If he's worried about the cost he needs to put forward ideas or suggestions because you can't just say I'm worried and then ignore it. Finally the house was more him then me, he bought it, he choose colours etc we did lots together which was very binding like stripping wallpaper for says and days but I certainly didn't push my ideas on and have him go along with things.

ApocalypseThen Sat 05-Oct-13 10:00:12

What we did was split jobs. He did cars and music, I did other stuff. He sorted his family and friends, I did mine. We didn't bother making sure our guests lists were the same - he had a bigger family, we asked people the same degree out (so immediate families plus kids, aunties and uncles, first cousins both sides). Saves hassle.

But I wouldn't stress about him not being interested in stuff - find what likes and let him at it.

DontmindifIdo Sat 05-Oct-13 10:12:54

I do think a lot of people don't understand what a wedding costs - he might hear "we paid £30 a head" and thinks he can get the whole wedding for £30 a head, without thinking that for a lot of couples, it's £30 a head for hte meal, plus venue hire of £2k, plus drinks on top of htat, plus canapes, plus evening buffet. 5 years ago I paid £35 per head just for the main meal, then £15 per head for the evening food, plus wine on top of that. Realistically, you can't expect people to go to Ireland and not have them there for the whole day, so you can't make it cheaper with having people like cousins you don't see regularly to the evening do, it's all or nothing. Also agree if you've asked people to go all that way, you do need to put on a 'day' for them.

I found with my DH, he found the whole planning thing so stressful because he felt like it was spiraling out of control, but it was more that he'd just thought in terms of "hotel hire, food and drink" not thought about flowers and invites and DJs and hairdressing and all the other things that have to be arranged, so he didn't feel he had it straight in his head and just panicked. I put together a spread sheet with my budget (and the total at the bottom) plus another column of acutal costs once booked so he could see the differences (things like cake cost more, I found I'd budgeted off a servey on what the average couple spent, but that was squewed by the numbers getting family to make cakes for free/cost of ingredients only). I e-mailed that to him regularly with clear questions like "this photographer for £X or this one for £Y" and links to their websites so he could be involved without having to go out and research from scratch. Also the e-mailing worked for us because he could take his time to think without me being sat next to him expecting him to have an opinion that minute.

Take the emotion out of it, write him an email, put it clearly in figures - this venue you want (add website link) will cost £70 per head, state what's included. Then put in the other hotels he's rejected (at least 2 others) put what the costs would be to go with them, what's is and not included (if you can then price that up to see what that would cost, don't let him think you're comparing a £70 per head meal and a £30 per head if the second is just for the main meal and not including evening buffet or room hire).

Below put a list of other items and rough budgets - photographer, flowers, wedding favours, invites (printing and postage), orders of service, suits, wedding & bridesmaid dresses/shoes/bags, wedding hair & makeup, cake, DJ/band etc

Put on it if he has any preference or would like to take over organising any of those things/trying to find a cheaper deal than your budget. If he's not prepared to do the work, then he's leaving it to you, but you agree the budget per item and you agree that if you are going over budget on anything you will speak to him about it first before booking anything.

DontmindifIdo Sat 05-Oct-13 10:18:45

oh and I found having a clear running budget helped when I asked him on little things like which invites to get, I could say "A is £X each, £XX in total, B is £Y each, £YY in total, our budget is £XX, do you think it's worth going over/do you prefer the cheaper ones and save some money?"

I always refered back to the budget when discussing anything to take the panic out of it, so he had the context for the costs, that it was ok, we weren't going over budget until he took over organising the photographer and booked on £1k more expensive than I'd budgetted, and then on the day put £2k behind the bar we'd not budgetted for, I question why I bothered

momb Sat 05-Oct-13 10:31:00

Sorry I offended you. I was just trying to help with the budget as you had said he was worried about it. So glad to read that you've talked it through and are both feeling better about the whole thing.
It is a lot to plan (I'm planning mine at the moment too) and is a stressful time. Why not pop down to the wedding board? We share more frivolous planning stuff in there and it's nice to see what everyone else is planning ;-)

DontmindifIdo Sat 05-Oct-13 11:04:27

oh and OP - while it's a lot of money to spend, it does sound like you've been realistic about what you can afford. As you are going to be arranging a wedding from another country, I think a lot of the ways you could do a similar 'quality' wedding for less money will be a lot harder - it's harder to do a DIY wedding from a distance, using a hotel who can sort out details for you makes sense.

SpottedDickandCustard Sat 05-Oct-13 11:21:31

Is it really worth persuing something that is causing such problems and arguments between you? And the wedding is still a year away so you are looking at another year full of arguments and stress.

Surely it is better to sit down with your DP and agree on a day and a way of planning it that you are both comfortable with.

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 11:59:11

Exactly don't mind if I do, people say they spent 30-40 quid but then there are all the extras. He has not replied to a single email I have sent... I thought that would take the emotion out of thIngs as you have suggested, and it's stuff like that which has lead to me feeling resentful.

We've done the spread sheets and as he likes computer stuff he created all the excel stuff but it's so complex I can't use/understand it so I have my own one. The issue is really way more to do we communication and we're now bickering over everything. Seems like a weird patch.

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 11:59:54

Thanks momb didn't know there was a wedding board!

Kundry Sat 05-Oct-13 12:06:19

Ah so it's really about you learning how to argue with each other!

Unfortunately this I cannot help you with as DH and I have been together for 2 1/2 years and our honeymoon period is ending - and we haven't the foggiest idea how to solve conflicts. It's crap isn't it?

One thing that has worked for us is writing things down in an e-mail two days later when the emotion has calmed and the person can say what exactly was upsetting them - invariably it wasn't what the other person thought at all. Would this help?

diddl Sat 05-Oct-13 12:15:37

If you don't live in Ireland anymore-are you still close to people there?

Will guests not from there be willing to pay to travel & stay over?

I'm not surprised that he's panicking about spending money that you haven't got yet though!

EllieQ Sat 05-Oct-13 12:27:54

I wonder if the cultural differences are causing more of a problem that you realise? I'm assuming that you are Irish and he isn't, from what you've said. You're planning the type of wedding that is the 'norm' to you and your family/ friends, but it is a large wedding by British standards. The wedding is in your home country, and I would guess the majority of the guests are from 'your' side. His family and friends have the extra 'hassle' of travelling to Ireland, and perhaps there are some people who won't be able to go because of this? Despite how much he loves you and wants to marry you, this could be upsetting him.

In your OP, you said he was worried about the cost, but have since said this isn't the case. Do you think that's true, or is he just saying that to avoid another argument?

To be honest, you've come across as very defensive when people have made comments about the wedding and the cost based on the information in your OP (him being worried about the cost, the fact you'd be happy to get a £5k loan out to pay for it) - if you're like that when talking about the wedding plans, I'm not surprised you're having arguments about it! It does come across as you wanting everything your way and not being willing to compromise, or compromising very begrudgingly.

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 13:34:15

Actually your right the problem is more with my defensiveness about it all, then about money. I think you might feel a bit hurt if people implied your marriage was less valid then theirs or you would be rubbish parents because you wanted the wedding you were planning and it cost a certain amount. Since I'm already stressed about it hearing this isn't the nicest thing... It's actually really tough. I am in my 20's and I wish my mum was here. She died a year and a half ago and it's shit, so it's really compounding the sense I am doing it alone.

Actually my OH saw this thread, left it open on the iPad and said it's not about the cost as he felt I deserve to have a great dress and the cost of the venue makes sense it's about the fact I am over reacting, as I feel he isn't helping, he shuts down. So there you go, I am the problem! Something to work on...actually I am really good at compromising, he is the one who has issues around that and sharing (only child) ... He said the shitting himself bit was just about spending big money on anything and said he felt the same paying the deposit for the house etc.

I want to get married in Ireland for a number of reason but also my father is disabled and I wouldn't want to put him out, my siblings wouldn't be able to afford to travel etc and as my OH is an only child his family have been asked they are all really excited about the idea as are our UK friends. Anyways the location is not the issue whatsoever.

diddl Sat 05-Oct-13 13:51:04

No, but you are putting your own family first-which might rankle a little-although I can see why.

Sad that your siblings couldn't afford to travel-but then how lucky that others can!

Sorry to hear about your mum-perhaps there's stuff that siblings who live nearby the venue can do to help?

Perhaps you need to take a breath, write down what needs doing & who can do what?

I don't remember it being that hard tbh, although I did live in the town that we married in, I was studying full time & HTB working full time elsewhere so we were only together at weekends.

There was stuff he wasn't bothered about-flowers, cake, so I did that without him & he did suits without me for example.

But compared to some, perhaps ours was pretty basic-we didn't stress over stuff like table decorations, wedding favours, colour schemed-that sort of attention to detail just isn't us.

So the hardest thing was booking & church & reception together!

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 16:34:19

I guess I am putting my family first to a certain extent but then they have been through a lot. There are alot of family complexities that makes it very difficult for my sibling such as kids etc and I don't think my dad would be great for traveling with his issues. Beside OH wants it in Ireland to and his folks are really excited about it. We see his family at least weekly and mine like twice in a year. His parents were extremely involved to the point of over bearing in the house stuff so I'm happy to have this on my turf. What's not to love about an Irish party anyways!?

Bajas Sat 05-Oct-13 17:06:06

OP I had a wedding similar to yours in Ireland last year and I don't think your budget is excessive for an Irish wedding at all.

My dh is a bit like your dp in terms of panicking about big spends like wedding, deposit for house etc. When we argued about things of that nature, I ended up in floods of tears and he ended up walking off. The walking off made me furious and the tears made him feel like a bastard.

Our solution? We went out on a walk or to a coffee shop or anywhere public to discuss it so I couldn't get hysterical and he couldn't storm off. We found this worked really well in terms of being organised and getting things marked off the list (always had a hard backed notebook with us to help us keep focused and organised)

It worked so well we have continued to do it with anything 'big' since- discussing having children, the fact we haven't been able to get pregnant in over a year, work on the rental property we own. It has made us able to discuss things logically and by trying to take some of the overwhelming emotions out of the equation for a while to decide a plan of what happens next.

Maybe worth trying?

ammature Sat 05-Oct-13 17:41:25

Thank you this is exactly what we need to do and what we will do.

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