Hey all! I apologize for the length of this post but a little backstory to help get the idea.. FH and I made an initial guest list to fit our budget when we first got engage. FH has 3 sides of his family and a very large one at that and I also have a large family so at least 100+ people on our list were just family. we kept the family lists to immediate aunts and uncles on his dad, step dad, and moms sides, grandparents from all sides and cousins who are over 13 (only one baby cousin because we are having a child free wedding). there are also two of his dad's cousins and their parents (FH's great aunt and uncle) bc his dad's cousins are his age and he is very close with their whole fam, especially now as he is older, not so much in each others lives when he was a kid. Anyways, from the beginning my MIL has I guess felt slighted (shes always on the defense about stuff) and made a HUGE deal about HER aunts and uncles not being invited esp since his dad's aunt and uncle and two cousins are invited. Problem is we did not originally add them to the family column bc altho they really helped his mom when he was born and a baby, since they moved across country when FH was 8, FH does not have a relationship with them. When he goes to his hometown to visit his grandparents, they don't make the effort to see him, they don't ever call him, and they haven't in the 22 years ever come to visit him or his mother. FH expresses to his mother altho he would love to invite the entire fam our guest list would be at like 300 people just his family and its unrealistic and we chose family based off of who he has a good relationship with now, not when he was a kid. Anyways, MIL initially threatens not to come and just being overbearing and pretty nasty, so we add them. She agrees to help pay for them and we give her and FFIL (her husband, FH step dad) their own list to add their own people they want to pay for. they add a couple of MIL's cousins which is cool and she added 2 of her good friends who knew her when FH was a baby which FH is cool with but would not have invited himself bc he hasn't seen them since he was a baby and then two coworkers, one of which FH and I have never met. the other we met once, and both will not know anyone at the wedding other than each other and a family friend of FH who also works at their office.
SO now we have COVID to worry about and realistically we have to cut down on the guest list that has grown to 245 people. My parents also have their own list they have already planned to cut people from and my mother already told MIL that if it comes to it they will need to cut from their list too which MIL seemed ok with. my mom has been in contact w MIL bc 1) my parents are hosting and paying for all the guests plates and 2) since MIL has been super nasty to her son and myself when anything guest list related comes up, my mom has volunteered to handle those conversations bc MIL wont be nasty with my mom.
My question is, if it comes down to it, do we cut out people from the list - or let MIL cut her and FIL's list. Our initial reactions and lists we made for 100, 150, and 200 people just to have an idea do not include her coworkers we don't know/haven't met and my feeling is if we have to cut down on the list I'd rather they be the first to go since we don't know them, but my gut is telling me my MIL will cut out other people and still have her coworkers we don't know there and idk why but it bothers me. We also will remove all the great aunts and uncles FH has no relationship with (which she might do anyways, but that is our plan) At the end of the day my parents who are footing the bill have already told me and FH that we can decide who is on the final list and I went through with my mom cutting people from her list, but I am just thinking this is going to be yet another thing my MIL will threaten not to come to the wedding about or just blow it up insanely out of proportion.
So just curious what others who may be in a similar situation have done and how they have handled this - more so did you pick the final say or let your parents respectively cut their lists down on their own.