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More of an 'is it unreasonable' to want a small wedding?

(42 Posts)
MonsterUnderTheBed Mon 19-Oct-09 12:22:03

DP and I have been together 5yrs, we planned on gettin married a couple of years ago but never got round to it - lots of stuff going on.

Anyway, I don't like being the centre of attention, and would not be having a big wedding with a big dress etc.

I wanted to get married when we were on holiday in Vegas with DS, but DP wants his Dad to be at the wedding, so we didn't get hitched. I don't mind this really.

So, I was thinking we could get married in registrars with closest family and a couple of friends. I would prefer to get married with only DP's Dad and Stepmum present, but can understand why this would upset the rest of the family.

I have made a list of DP's family - just parents and siblings, and done the same for mine and then included my best friend and her husband and DP's best friend. The total stands at 27. I think I could just about deal with 27 folk watching me get married to DP.

The problem is DP thinks his grandparents and aunts and uncles would be annoyed that they weren't invited and that folk on my side would not be impressed either - so I'm a bit stuck. I think that if we told anyone our plan of getting married in registrars with 27 folk, they would try to convince us to do it somewhere else, so that we could invite more people.

There is a limit on how many people you can have in registrars, but I expect it is probably more than 27, but I don't know.

My plan was to get them all to meet us in town for a pretend meal and get them to dress smartish(not that it matters, there would be no photographer) Then take them to registrars and get married - simple. Am I mad - is this a very crazy/stupid thing to do??

The main thing is, we want to get married (DP doesn't care where or how big, as long as his dad is there) I don't want hundreds of folk at the wedding (we both have lots of extended family) I don't want it to be a big affair. I also don't really want people to know, so that they can't be prepared and bring a camera(although some of them bring cameras everywhere with them)

So AIBU to want soemthing really really small?

MummyDoIt Mon 19-Oct-09 12:24:24

Your wedding, your choice. You should have exactly what you want on your day and don't listen to anyone who tries to persuade you to do something you don't want to do. I think your idea of springing it on them as a surprise is a lovely one (and neatly avoids giving anyone the opportunity to put pressure on you). Go for it!

TrillianSlasher Mon 19-Oct-09 12:26:11

YANBU to want a small wedding, but you have to balance your desire to not have a big wedding against your family's desire to watch you get married. Decide which is more important to you, and go for it.

mumblechum Mon 19-Oct-09 12:26:59

YANBU. We didn't tell anyone except our four closest friends who came tothe wedding, and told our parents after the event.

My parents were delighted that we'd got married, and if they were put out at not getting invited they did a very good job of not showing it. MIL's was reactiion was tosay that if she'd known about it she would have got a coach full of her mates & rellies down to it which just confirmed that we did the right thing!

How about you have only your and dp's parents.

My experience is that lots of people aren't really all that interested in other peoples' weddings, especially huge fussy ones.

luciemule Mon 19-Oct-09 12:27:35

I don't think you're being unreasonable at all.
I had a big wedding in a big church (120 to day do and 150 to night do) and now I really wished we'd got married in a village church with just immediate family with a meal afterwards in a restaurant. I feel that it was too extravagant and keep questioning myself as to why I needed to have a big wedding.
Your wedding day should be just how you want it but also bear in mind that you might need to compromise about the aunts and uncles, grandparents bit as it's your DHs day too.
Like me, 10 yrs down the line you might actually think to yourself "oh I wish I had had a bigger wedding!".

justgaveup Mon 19-Oct-09 12:31:41

could you just invite parents and not even siblings? Just thinking that afterwards it would be much easier to explain/justify to grandparents and aunties if you said 'we just wanted our parents there'

You should DEFINATELY do what you want to do.

Springing it on them is a fantastic idea and would be even easier to do with just parents!

The people who get upset will get over it.

As my nan used to say 'the ones that matter don't mind and the ones that mind don't matter'

ben5 Mon 19-Oct-09 12:32:06

your wedding your choice. if others want to come tell them they have to pay there way!

beaniesinthebucketagain Mon 19-Oct-09 12:33:06


me and dp have discussed similar, but since so many people would apparently be offended we have decided us the children and our joint best friends as witnesses, theyre neutral, no one can be offended individually they all can be together!

No issues of present lists bridesmaids and so on, problem solved, after all its only about us and our children anyway!

gorionine Mon 19-Oct-09 12:33:12

YANBU, there were 12 guests at my wedding. Important people to us were there and we just sent a card with a picture to other people to announce them we had got married.

Nobody ever told us that they had been hurt by not being invited but maybe some where I cannot say for sure.

MrsJohnDeere Mon 19-Oct-09 12:34:57

Not unreasonable at all. Do what suits you.

Dh and I had 30 people at ours and spent next to nothing. If I was doing it again I'd have had it even smaller (or gone away and done it abroad with no guests).

CMOTdibbler Mon 19-Oct-09 12:35:37

YANBU at all, and I love the idea of a suprise, especially if you can tie it to the idea of another celebration so they dress up a little, and have their cameras with them.

The no of people you can have in a registrars depends on the place - some are smaller than others

geordieminx Mon 19-Oct-09 12:36:25

We got married 2 weekends ago. We had 40 people to a hotel for ceremony, meal etc.

This 40 included aunts uncles cousins grandparents, parents, siblings and a few friends - we have small families grin

40 was a lovely number as it meant we got to see everyone, although it is difficult to know where to draw the line = ie do you invite relatives partners?/spouses?/boyfriends or girlfriends?

I know what your dp is saying about inviting some family but not others - it gets a bi complicated - I wouldnt have got married without my grandad being there as we are very close, but wouldnt have been bothered about aunts - luckily we only have 5 between us.

Tis a minefield.

MonsterUnderTheBed Mon 19-Oct-09 12:39:07

I had considered just getting married in front of parents only. It would be DP's Dad, his stepmum. His mum and her husband.

But, because we have been to DP's two sister's weddings, then they feel they should be invited to our wedding.

I don't think in a million years, that we would look back on our wedding day and wish it had been bigger.

DP doesn't really want to invite anyone else to the wedding, he just voiced his concern that some people might not be too happy at not being invited. If we invited grandparents and aunts and uncles from both sides, we would easily be looking at 90 folk - which is getting way out of my comfort zone. And I'm not sure about how many people can fit in the registrars.

MonsterUnderTheBed Mon 19-Oct-09 12:43:41

Thanks for all your replies so far - i just have to run out and pick up DS.


Tillyscoutsmum Mon 19-Oct-09 12:47:11

YANBU and if its just parents and siblings (and a couple of close friends), then I don't think aunts etc. will be too upset. Unfortunately, if they are, its a bit tough imho - they'll get over it smile. Even if you do the whole "big" wedding and invite everyone, you're bound to upset someone, somehow.

Wanderingsheep Mon 19-Oct-09 12:48:27

We're getting married in August. DP hates being the centre of attention so we're getting married in Gretna Green. They do an all inclusive thing where you have ceremony and a meal just for 20 guests, it is perfect for us as it still means that I get to have everyone who is important there.

We're also going to have a party when we get home to celebrate with friends, but there will be no speeches etc.

YANBU it is YOUR day!

Sunshinemummified Mon 19-Oct-09 12:54:41

We got married a couple of months ago and, because we also didn't want to invite loads of family, we went to New York and did it there. Including our 2 DCs there were 8 guests, which was just fantastic (although there were about another 8 people we would have like to have been there but couldn't make it). We've been together 18 years and have big extended families and lots of mates - a wedding in the UK would have been big and expensive. I stopped worrying about whether my family was hurt a few years ago - it wasn't about them, it was about us and the DCs. I'd go for it if I were you.

rimmer08 Mon 19-Oct-09 14:18:13

OMG! you are so not BU! i got married abroad with only 7 people there, it would have turned into a circus otherwise; having to invite people you dont like just because they are family. do whats best for YOU and DP. its about you not them!

ps can you tell i have had to have this convo before?

RorysRacingMa Mon 19-Oct-09 14:25:16

Go for it. I too did the small affair and we didn't want anyone to make decisions for us about who should be there etc. So we didn't tell anyone till we'd organised everything, put the invites in the post and then went on holiday.

we invited parents and siblings and my grandfather(only grandparent alive) and about 6 good friends and their children. We totalled 24. The registry office had a couple of rooms available and we went for the smallest.

None of my aunts and uncles have ever said anything about not being invited. i don't think they were bothered - apart from an aunt who was annoyed that her daughter, my cousin, knew before her.

Ultimately you've got to do what suits you not anyone else. It's about you and your relationship with your Dp no-one else.

racmac Mon 19-Oct-09 14:28:25


I didnt want the big wedding and all the hassal that goes with it.

I went with dh and ds and my mum and IL's to New York and got married there - didnt invite siblings (dh side) as his sister is pain in the **

It was brilliant and if i did it again i would have left the inlaws at home grin

deaddei Mon 19-Oct-09 14:44:49

We had 13 to our wedding, and I felt that was 9 too many.
Wish I could do it again, by running away, coming back and having a party.
Have a wonderful day!!

thesecondcoming Mon 19-Oct-09 14:54:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MonsterUnderTheBed Mon 19-Oct-09 15:46:29

Thanks everyone for your replies.

I'm so glad no one told me I was crazy for wanting a small one or for wanting to spring it on them in surprise.

Thanks for all your stories. They are all great.

I think we will go ahead and do it as we planned.


PurplePoppy Mon 19-Oct-09 19:42:11

Sorry to be a disenting voice, and maybe it is not being supportive to you, but I was really annoyed when my cousin had a very small wedding with only parents and didnt invite the rest of us. We have always been a close extended family and got on well, and it felt like a rejection of this and of family. I would never treat her any differently, but I felt rather hurt and rejected, and I certainly feel a lot less close to her husband than I do to my other cousins spouse.

I think weddings are great because you get to meet the other side of the family and all the other friends. In my mind, maybe because I'm not religious, marriage is about the union of 2 families and 2 groups of friends, not just the couple. Its also about saying to society (the village, the family, your friends...whoever your society is) this is the person I choose please respect and support our partnership. I can see that if you are religious then it is not about that and more about saying all that to God so then it is a different situation.

Maybe that is not helpful, but it is my honest feelings.

LifeOfKate Mon 19-Oct-09 19:55:43

Yanbu, you need to have it the way you want it.

I had the same issues with standing up in front of lots of people, so we had parents and siblings, 9 including us (or 10, if you count my nephew in utero wink). It was perfect, I wouldn't have changed a second of it

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