Sydney
Expert May 2019

Dry Wedding to not make guests uncomfortable?

Sydney, on May 21, 2018 at 3:09 PM

Posted in Etiquette and Advice 37

So my FH and I keep going back and forth on whether we should have a dry wedding or not. Our problem is that about 60% of the guest list (mom's side) are all mormon. Obviously they do not drink, and a good portion of those will not even attend our wedding or will be VERY uncomfortable if alcohol is...
So my FH and I keep going back and forth on whether we should have a dry wedding or not. Our problem is that about 60% of the guest list (mom's side) are all mormon. Obviously they do not drink, and a good portion of those will not even attend our wedding or will be VERY uncomfortable if alcohol is there.
I'm worried it's not fair for the other 40% of the guest list to not be able to have any drinks if we do a dry wedding for my mom's half of the family. However, if there is a bar there, lots of other people won't show or will be visibly upset. What would you do in this situation?

37 Comments

  • Sydney
    Expert May 2019
    Sydney ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment
    You're correct that it may not necessarily be a mormon thing, but "my family" thing. This is how they have been at prior events.
    • Reply
  • L
    Expert October 2018
    Linda ·
    • Flag
    The big question is do you want alcohol served at YOUR wedding. I am a proponent of its your wedding and people should becoming to see you get married not for the drinks. Neither me nor my FH drink and we don’t want alcohol at our wedding so their will be none. I expect people to come and enjoy themselves without. If they can’t then they are not coming to spend time with us they are coming for the drinks and I don’t want them there.

    So you you need to decide what will make you and your FH comfortable and go that route. It’s about you and him and what you want for your day.
    • Reply
  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
    • Flag

    Could you do a light bar? Like just beer and wine, and no hard liquor? I'm assuming the 60% have been to events with alcohol served, or at least restaurants? You could just seat those people away from the bar and away from people drinking, then the other 40% closer to the bar with other people drinking. A lot of people on my fiance's side don't drink (either because they are recovering alcoholics or religious reasons) and a lot of older members of my family are LDS so they don't drink either. My fiance and I drink and so do all of our friends, so we are having open beer and wine then having sparkling cider served to the tables of guests that don't drink.

    • Reply
  • Adrianna
    Expert June 2018
    Adrianna ·
    • Flag
    We aren't having alcohol at our wedding. Definitely not necessary!


    Whatever you choose for you wedding should be a reflection of what you and your spouse want.
    • Reply
  • ET
    Devoted March 2018
    ET ·
    • Flag
    Have the bar. My parents and some of my siblings are Mormon, and while they didn’t drink, they all still had a good time and weren’t made uncomfortable by the presence of alcohol at my wedding. Most Mormons I know are pretty understanding and accepting, even when it comes to something they don’t personally love, like alcohol.
    • Reply
  • Tracey & Dr. Julian
    Devoted August 2019
    Tracey & Dr. Julian ·
    • Flag
    Is there an option to have a bar menu for those guest that drink and have the drinks served to those guest at reception from kitchen. Not have an actual Bar.
    I also think not having liquor will save you money so think of that as well.
    • Reply
  • Vanessasaurus
    VIP June 2019
    Vanessasaurus ·
    • Flag
    You aren't forcing anyone to have a drink, and I think if they love and care about you they should respect your choice to give people their options. I would do a consumption bar in this case.
    • Reply
  • Going to the chapel
    Master July 2017
    Going to the chapel ·
    • Flag

    Do they never go to restaurants, college ball games or pro sports events? All of those have alcohol available. As others have said, that part of the family appears judgmental and I wouldn't cater to their opinions

    • Reply
  • MAMW
    VIP August 2013
    MAMW ·
    • Flag

    I would have an open consumption bar. I feel like your mom's family's behavior is so entitled and judgemental that I wouldn't cater to it. Just because they don't like it doesn't mean that all of your guests should be denied the option of having an alcoholic beverage.

    • Reply
  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn ·
    • Flag

    Honestly, what sounds uncomfortable to me is a dry reception with a bunch of mormons. If you want to serve alcohol, serve it. Surely they don't expect every event that they attend to cater to their every desire. If they choose not to come, I'm sorry, but it seems like you're better off having the wedding that you want without facing judgement.

    • Reply
  • Lindsey
    VIP June 2018
    Lindsey ·
    • Flag

    My FH side doesn't drink alcohol due to religion, we will not be forcing it down their thoat and they can choose ginger ale instead of the champagne tost

    • Reply
  • HowCo Industries
    VIP September 2018
    HowCo Industries ·
    • Flag
    Dry receptions do tend to be shorter. If it's not too late, why not schedule for a short reception with an after party. Let the 40% know what's going on. If venues are booked, I like the idea of drinking starting later.
    • Reply
  • Soon2Bemrsb
    Savvy October 2019
    Soon2Bemrsb ·
    • Flag

    We aren’t Mormons, but FI’s family does not drink either. We are a little bit concerned about their reaction, but honestly, this is who we are. We like a little bit of beer and wine, nothing too out of control, and we like to have a good time with our friends. It’s our day and we want our reception to reflect that.

    Is there a bartender at your venue, or could you hire one to help ration the alcohol and keep things under control?

    • Reply
  • Emma
    September 1995
    Emma ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    Just don't carry this same attitude into your marriage.....it will fail if your feelings are foremost in your mind.

    • Reply
  • W-K
    Super October 2019
    W-K ·
    • Flag

    We're Pentecostal and will be having a dry wedding. While FH and I do drink on occasion and we *might* do a champagne toast we won't be supplying any other alcohol for our wedding. We're even thinking if we should be doing a champagne toast due to the fact the vast majority of our small guest list does not drink. There's nothing wrong with a dry wedding if that's what you want.

    • Reply
  • Rita-Jean
    Devoted May 2019
    Rita-Jean ·
    • Flag

    So, we had a dry wedding. I don't drink, hubby rarely drinks, and we just decided we wanted to use the money we'd use for alcohol elsewhere. We actually used most of it on food, which was a great decision. As far as the wedding day, people still had a blast, and we still ended the night about where we thought we would. We had people on and off the dance floor all night, and I only had one person tell me that she wasn't on the dance floor because she was sober. Just about everyone else had a turn out there, even my nephew, who doesn't dance (who I literally had to drag out there, but that's beside the point, lol). No one complained (at least where it would get back to us) about there being no alcohol.

    • Reply
  • Mrsbdg
    Champion August 2017
    Mrsbdg ·
    • Flag
    I personally wouldn’t want to completely base all my decisions about hosting on the personal beliefs of how others live their lives.

    If they dont want open bar, fine. I would offer a consumption bar for those who do enjoy drinks. You could also have a shorter reception with dinner and cake in the early afternoon then in the evening host cocktails at a bar.
    • Reply

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