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to wonder what the fuss was about at a recent wedding??

(42 Posts)
canttouchthis Tue 14-Jul-09 21:46:28

My cousin's dad asked his daughter's new MIL if she'd dance at my cousin's wedding, but she refused.

This was seen as quite rude, and has been commented on quite a bit since the wedding recently.

I have since spoken to my own mother about this (who was unable to attend) and she said it's usually common courtesy for the father of the bride and mother of the groom to dance after the bride and groom have their first dance.

It is also apparently common courtesy for the father of the groom to ask the mother of the bride to dance aswell, but that didn't happen at my own wedding (so my own mother had something to say about that at the time!). I saw that one as a personality clash, but surely does it really matter if they don't dance?? It's not for everyone is it?

This isn't really a AIBU, but more like how many others have encountered this and is it really that big a deal??

LadyGlencoraPalliser Tue 14-Jul-09 21:48:19

Blimey, I didn't even know about that particular piece of etiquette. Don't recall FIL asking my mum to dance either or Dad asking MIL. I'm sure I would have remembered if they did.

LadyGlencoraPalliser Tue 14-Jul-09 21:49:27

Oh, and my mum was a real stickler for the bleeding wedding etiquette handbook, so if it was that important she would probably have insisted on it (like the fuss she made about the top table placement etc etc)

onepieceoflollipop Tue 14-Jul-09 21:50:18

I kind of think that some families are very traditional/set in their ways/quick to take offence. My dh's family are a bit like this.

Perhaps the new mil was too shy/unwell or some other reason. Did she refuse in an unpleasant manner?

Imo it is NOT a big deal. It is the sort of thing my mil would take great offence at. Unfortunately my (step) father uses a wheelchair so would have been unable to dance with her and if she took offence then tough.

Have people really not got anyting better to do than comment on such a triviality (imo) "quite a bit since the wedding"?

nickytwotimes Tue 14-Jul-09 21:51:19

I have seen this at most big weddings and assume it is a standard tradition. HOWEVER, it is hardly worth getting knickers in a twist about, is it?
So yanbu at all.
This is why we had our reception in our house with a buffet from Marks and Spencer!

SlartyBartFast Tue 14-Jul-09 21:51:45

who on earth woudl someone say No to an invitation to dance.
etiquette aside, he was doing the right thing by the books, why couldnt she dance with him?

canttouchthis Tue 14-Jul-09 21:53:43

My mother is still up in arms about what happened, she feels really hurt about it (was over 2 years ago now!!). I just don't see why get upset over it.

I think in this recent wedding of my cousin and her new husband, it could be that they were only together 18 months before getting married, and so both sets of parents didn't really get the chance to know each other well before the wedding. Not everyone feels comfortable dancing with a stranger, or someone they hardly know. However that's not a good enough explanation for some hmm

Good to hear yet another person has encountered the inlaws not dancing with one another and not worrying over it.

Yorky Tue 14-Jul-09 21:55:15

We had a ceilidh so it got us out of the embarrassing first dance thing (bf wished she'd chosen a shorter song!)
Apparently it also got us out of more family stress than we realised!

FWIW I thought the best man was supposed to dance with chief bridesmaid, never heard the thing about parents partner swapping before!

SlartyBartFast Tue 14-Jul-09 21:55:46

2 years ago ? shock

they should move on

onepieceoflollipop Tue 14-Jul-09 21:56:06

canttouchthis is your mother normally very sensitive/quick to take offence? After 2 years perhaps she should drop it now. Has this caused ongoing issues with the inlaws?

I do understand how difficult it can be having relatives that are so easily hurt by things. It sounds like your mother needs something to occupy her time rather than worrying about these minor past "slights"

nickytwotimes Tue 14-Jul-09 21:56:53

<splurts tea at laptop>

2 years?

Jesus. Time to let it go.

CMOTdibbler Tue 14-Jul-09 21:57:53

My parents just don't dance, so they certainly didn't at our wedding. Didn't worry me at all, and I don't see why anyone should dance if they aren't comfortable with it

canttouchthis Tue 14-Jul-09 21:59:10

I'm not really sure what the ins and outs of it were, but my uncle did go about it in the correct manner and asked her to dance. Next thing we see my uncle dancing with my aunt, so no mother of the groom anywhere to be seen in the vicinity. It was only DH that noticed it, I was too busy enjoying myself to really notice all the trivial stuff!grin

Mother of the groom was present when the dancing started, she obviously had her reasons for not dancing. Whatever they were, I just don't understand why people feel compelled to blow it right out of proportion. I'm sure it will all come out eventually.

canttouchthis Tue 14-Jul-09 22:04:16

The thing is, in regards to my own wedding, my FIL did dance. He danced with me and then a few others (we had a ceilidh too!), so he definately was fit to dance, he just for whatever reason didn't ask my mum to dance and she's still never got over it. Yep, DH and myself are still wondering why she won't drop the subject. It's been going on for quite a while hasn't it?! Neurotic bint...shock

I agree, 2 years is a long time to be still banging on about it. Yes, she's quick to take offence and easily hurt. Like walking on eggshells.

Not everyone likes dancing, so it could have been as simple as that for my cousin's MIL.

zipzap Tue 14-Jul-09 23:13:58

Some people too I guess have certain expectations (rightly or wrongly) of what should and shouldn't be done at events like weddings.

Maybe your mother had been dreaming about her perfect daughter's wedding and she'd seen something or had a friend witter on about how wonderful she looked when she had her turn on the dancefloor with the FIL and your mum couldn't wait to say 'me too' or compare notes etc - and then she couldn't and it is the one thing that she has fixated upon since. Maybe she had been taking secret dance lessons so she would shine on the dancefloor when she got her moment in the spotlight...

All sorts of reasons why something is no big deal to someone and a very big deal to someone else - might be worth pushing a bit to see if there is a reason why it is such a big deal to her?

slowreadingprogress Tue 14-Jul-09 23:46:10

I think manners and kindness are more important than etiquette therefore if the woman did not want to dance, assuming she refused in a polite enough manner, the man should accept that graciously and not make a fuss about it or tell others about it!

PlumBumMum Tue 14-Jul-09 23:59:18

I always thought it was tradition, but always thought that should be something ironed out by the bride when organising the first dances,
I know I checked if my parents wanted to swap

grin Infact on walking out of the church the priest told the parents to swap partners and FIL said
"Its ok we've been doing it for years"
Priest didn't laugh but we thought it was funny

slowreadingprogress Wed 15-Jul-09 00:15:45

oh how I long to go to a wedding where people are behaving naturally and spontaneously and not trying to copy every other wedding they've ever seen

why do these traditions get perpetuated? I can't see any good reason why - if we all relied on genuine good manners rather than traditions weddings would be a helluva lot less boring and stilted


ILovePudding Wed 15-Jul-09 00:33:59

Well, I don't know about tradition, but unless the MIL was physically unable to get out of her chair I think it was rather rude to turn down your uncle's invitation to dance. She needn't have stuck it out for the whole song, and could have made her excuses after a minute or so.

But it's not really something that your uncle needs to dwell on, as long as the bride and groom enjoyed their day!

johnthepong Wed 15-Jul-09 08:52:27

Does it really matter?? Ive never even heard of this tradition.

FWIW if I was the mother of the bride or whatever and was asked to dance by the new in laws, I would probably also say no. Im just not into dancing, and the thought of dancing in a room full of people with a complete stranger sounds like my worst nightmare.

goodnightmoon Wed 15-Jul-09 09:03:55

i had no idea and never noticed this at a wedding.

this is the sort of reason why DH and I "eloped." grin

peppapighastakenovermylife Wed 15-Jul-09 09:04:08

Two years on they are still upset?!

I dont understand wedding ettiquette - I just dont see why its important? Fine if everyone wants to do it but we had lots of seemingly random criticism about things we didnt do right apparently at our wedding.

I dont like being the centre of attention, therefore no first dance. Neither parent would want to dance so there we go. My inlaws didnt want to sit on a top table, so no top table...

I dont understand why it matters - and certainly not why someone would be upset two years on?!

lobsters Wed 15-Jul-09 10:07:29

Two years is nothing, I've just had MIL on the phone really upset because apparently she was ignored at my wedding 8 years ago!!!!!!!!!!!! And she's only just thought to mention it now. Weddings do funny things to people

CMOTdibbler Wed 15-Jul-09 10:58:30

For those of you who think that it is really important, what tactic should total non dancers take ?

My brother will be getting married next year, and his fiancees family seem to be much posher than my delightfully mad eccentric parents. I will have my hands full getting mum and dad appropriatly dressed for the occasion as it is, but I know that there is no way that they will dance with anyone. Should I ask SIL to be to explain in advance to her parents (I have only met her once btw) ?

nappyaddict Wed 15-Jul-09 10:59:43

I've never known of either tradition. I don't even want a first dance at my own wedding so would definitely refuse at someone elses!

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