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Another wedding AIBU

(171 Posts)
livelyredjellybean Tue 24-Apr-18 10:43:12

So, my DP and I are arranging our wedding for September this year. (Yes there is a good reason for the rush, can’t explain as it’s outing.)

We want a small, quiet ceremony followed by pictures at another location that’s special to us before returning for the evening do. We aren’t planning a sit down meal or anything. The special site pictures are the ONLY thing I really want on the day.
I talked this through with my mum who went pretty ballistic at me, saying she would be embarrassed if her family (her cousins and their offspring) were only invited to the evening do which is what we were intending. I can understand as they would be travelling an awful long way (7 hours one way) but if we invited everyone it would almost double the number of people we want at the ceremony.

Am I being unreasonable by only inviting them to the reception? Or is my mother for threatening not to come if they aren’t invited?

InspMorse Tue 24-Apr-18 10:59:13

7 hours one way for an evening reception is a lot.
I wouldn't be offended but whether or not I attended would depend on how close I was to th B&G.
If they choose to come I suppose they could make a weekend of it but it would be embarrassing if they arrived early and your ceremony (the one they are not invited to) was in full swing.
If you invited them for the whole day, it sounds like the wedding guests will be left on their own after the ceremony & so it will still be difficult - even more difficult still if there is no sit meal.

FizzyGreenWater Tue 24-Apr-18 10:59:51

Err, your extremely bratty mother is - unless of course she is offering to cover all costs? (and even if she was - it's still your wedding).

This is your wedding.

It is not your mother's wedding.

'Being embarrassed' at something someone else does is basically saying that you see them as an extension of YOU. Your mother still sees you as 'her child' rather than an adult whose actions don't reflect on her. Tell her that. It's your decision what you do at your wedding, and because you are not a two year old having a tantrum in Debenhams, no, your actions don't reflect on your mum at all.

However her actions in demanding that someone else rearrange their wedding plans do rather reflect on her, and not for the good.

If she feels that way and has such a level of disrespect for you as an adult, best she doesn't come.

Poodles1980 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:02:52

I think if you are having a small wedding then have just that and don’t half invite people. I think evening invites are poor taste- we like you but not enough to have you involved in our actual wedding

Incaseofemergencybreakglass Tue 24-Apr-18 11:03:46

5 months to September so not that much of a rush really. But your plans sound lovely and I would stick to what you want. So long as you don't expect people to travel long distances just for a evening do and are chilled about them declining. Also, I assume you aren't that close to the evening-only relatives as, if you are, this would likely be 'remembered' and held against you in future!

Confusedbeetle Tue 24-Apr-18 11:05:47

Just have your small wedding, no evening party is required. Offend less people. Everyone understands a small family only means just that.

astoundedgoat Tue 24-Apr-18 11:07:13

You can't invite people to come 7 hours for an evening do. Wedding invitations are traditionally for the ceremony, and then you feed/entertain your guests afterwards because they have come for the ceremony - that's the bit you invite people to. It's not really a "wedding invitation" if nobody is coming to the ceremony, but only to drinks in the evening.

How long do you expect your photography to have you out of the way for? More than an hour?

If you want to have your family there, then you need to invite them to the ceremony, arrange something to occupy them while you are having pictures taken (can you provide a soup & sandwiches lunch somewhere for everyone in a nice bar or something where they can order drinks at their own cost if they wish?) and then back for evening do.


Contact relations and explain that you are having a very small wedding, and while you would love to have them there, you know it is too far to expect them to travel, and you look forward to seeing them all at the christening (if that's the reason for the early date) or you will come to visit them during the summer etc. etc.

BrioLover Tue 24-Apr-18 11:08:03

I don't think it's unreasonable to invite people to the reception in the evening but not the ceremony. And your DM seems to be overreacting somewhat.

What I do think is a bit strange is to have people watch you get married, and then let them sort themselves out for the time between the ceremony and the reception. Unless it's only an hour or so and they just have to head straight to the reception whilst you do photos?

astoundedgoat Tue 24-Apr-18 11:08:06

Sorry - meant to say that option B is possibly better, as evening invitations + hugely long journey = rude. If you want a small wedding, just stick to that and enjoy your day.

KC225 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:09:44

Agree, small wedding is a small wedding g - low invites. In those circumstances, no invitation is better than an evening one.

Dancingmonkey87 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:13:34

I’m on your dm side it’s not very good etiquette to expect your guests to travel so far and not even feed and host them after the ceremony. It’s either all or nothing.

YippieKayakOtherBuckets Tue 24-Apr-18 11:16:22

One thing to consider - the pictures wouldn't necessarily need to happen on the day. A dear friend of mine had her wedding portraits taken a few days before the big day and said it was the single best thing that she did, because it took all the pressure off on the day and meant that they could just enjoy it. She co-ordinated it with her make-up and hair rehearsal.

Could you have ceremony and small reception on the day? You do need to feed and water people, especially if they are travelling a long way, but it doesn't have to be a formal sit-down meal.

agentdaisy Tue 24-Apr-18 11:16:43

I don't have a problem with evening invites. We had evening invites for colleagues and more distant relatives who live locally.

What is off is inviting people who have a long journey to the evening only. You can't ask people to travel for 7 hours just for the evening reception which is basically a party. If you don't want/can't fit/can't afford for them to be invited to the whole day then don't invite them at all. My cousin threw a massive strop because we didn't go to her wedding 6 hours drive away just to go to the church, then have to find something to do for 5 hours while they had the wedding breakfast with 'close' family and friends and then go to the evening reception, oh and only siblings children were invited so I'd have to find someone to look after my dcs overnight.

It's a bit weird having the ceremony, you and new dh disappearing for a few hours and then having an evening reception. Are you planning food and drinks for the all day guests while you're off taking photos or are they expected to just hang around and wait/go home and come back?

specialsubject Tue 24-Apr-18 11:16:46

14 hours round trip for a meal? Don't expect many acceptances.

5 months isn't a rush, it is only the stupid bridal industry that pushes booking years ahead.

if you want a small wedding, just arrange two witnesses and get it done. Then go off with a photographer to the other place. No-one particularly wants to hang around while you have a photo shoot.

and if you are old enough to get married, time to cut the cord and not involve mum in the planning.

Shadow666 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:18:11

Weddings aren't just about what the bride and groom want. These are your guests and deserve to be treated well. Think again about your plans and how you can make it work for everyone.

iklboo Tue 24-Apr-18 11:20:31

But it's the OP's mum's cousins and their children, not the OP's cousins. That's flipping well extended family to me.

Bitchywaitress Tue 24-Apr-18 11:21:07

How many people are going to the ceremony, and what will they do whilst you have pictures? How long is the gap between ceremony and evening reception? Are you going to feed people at all? What is the level of hosting at the evening do, will there be food, entertainment, cake cutting, speeches, drinks? I.e. will it be worth the journey?

So many questions, without a fuller picture it is impossible for anyone to say if your DM is being unreasonable, or you are!

whatshappening1 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:22:27

7 hours travel just for an evening do? Yeah I wouldn’t go to that unless it's my mum or sisters. If it's a cousins wedding then I wouldn’t bother. 7 hours travel is excessive for a wedding let alone just an evening do, be prepared for a lot of people not going. My sister eloped but she told us about it beforehand so when it was the wedding party a week later (only an hour away) my mum was alright with it. 7 hours really is excessive is there nowhere closer?

Trinity66 Tue 24-Apr-18 11:25:18

YANBU but equally they would not BU to turn down the invitation either, your mother on the other hand is being extremely U

TheTonightShow Tue 24-Apr-18 11:27:28

Sorry OP I wouldn't be up for travelling 7 hours for a party that went on from 7pm-midnight (just hazarding a guess at times here).

What kind of numbers are you talking? Is there anyway you could invite some evening guests/ones you're closest to to the whole thing and scrap the remaining evening guests?

Evening invites to me are usually reserved for friends/family you're not as close to, who live local to the venue. I wouldn't mind going to an evening do if I could get a cab home - but I'm unlikely to pay for a night's accommodation and travel more than an hour to get there for just a few hours.

Bluesmartiesarebest Tue 24-Apr-18 11:29:37

Could you have the very small wedding day you want followed by your mum hosting a family party after you return from honeymoon?

Twofigsnotgiven Tue 24-Apr-18 11:31:10

We did this. Got married in a tiny ceremony, had a big party two weeks later. Some people travelled from a distance, some didn’t, their call. TBH we only had the party because my parents wanted one, otherwise we’d have just had the small wedding.
Lots of couples do this - we’ve been to lots of wedding parties where the wedding was tiny but a party was arranged later. In fact we’re going to two similar parties this year alone.
Would people travel for a 40th, 50th, etc, party. Or a big golden wedding anniversary bash? Yes, some people would. What’s the difference here?
Your mum might be upset, but it’s your wedding.

Blondephantom Tue 24-Apr-18 11:31:10

Could you have an evening ceremony and meal? Then you could go and get the photos taken first with nobody waiting around. While it is your wedding, you do have to consider your guests. It is a long journey and they need a decent meal. With the length of the journey they will need to eat before your party but after they’ve set off which really bumps up the cost.

TheJoyOfSox Tue 24-Apr-18 11:31:38

It’s your wedding, therefore you and your dp are in charge of the guest list and all party planning.
If you don’t plan to have a meal, that’s fine, just make sure your guests know what it is they are traveling for and tell your mum to wind her neck in!

Thingsthatgo Tue 24-Apr-18 11:33:17

I think that you should invite who you want to your wedding. However, I also think that when you invite people to a wedding, you are inviting them to celebrate with you, and so you don’t disappear for hours and expect them to entertain themselves.

With regards to your second cousins who live miles away, I would maybe talk to them directly about your dilemma, and bypass DM altogether.

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