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alexandra
Beginner December 2021

Dry Wedding

alexandra, on September 9, 2020 at 9:51 AM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 65
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Due to personal issues (addiction, trauma, etc) we will be having a dry wedding. Unfortunately, my family LOVES to drink. I don’t want them to get drunk on my dime which will only trigger/upset my fiancé and myself and ruin our special day. How do I go about telling them that I won’t be serving alcohol? I know it’s not the norm, but it is important to us. I just worry about how my family will take it.

65 Comments

Latest activity by Cassidy, on October 19, 2020 at 8:05 AM
  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn ·
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    I've never seen someone announce that their wedding will be alcohol free, but maybe just spread it via word of mouth and on your wedding website?

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  • Shirley
    Expert November 2020
    Shirley ·
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    I agree with Caytlyn, word of mouth and wedding website. Also, don't let their reactions get you down. You have a good reason for having a dry wedding, and they are there to celebrate with you, not to have alcohol. I think they may grumble beforehand but they will definitely have a great time on the actual day.
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  • alexandra
    Beginner December 2021
    alexandra ·
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    Thanks! I’m hoping that having it in the afternoon instead of evening will ease the blow a bit, so they can go to a bar or something after the fact since we will likely wrap up by 9. I hate to disappoint, but it’s not worth sacrificing my own sanity!
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  • Kristen
    Rockstar November 2020
    Kristen ·
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    I do not think you need to announce it. Wedding website is fine. I think putting it in the invitation will cause problems in advance. Honestly, you can put it on the wedding website but I may not say anything at all so they cannot give you issues in advance but on the other hand not a bad idea to maybe give a heads up. If they complain just ignore them and tell them this is the decision for the both of you and that is final.

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  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
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    You don't say anything. Just like you don't tell the majority there would be alcohol there. There really is no need to announce it beforehand. If someone is upset by your choice, that is on them since you are being gracious hosts and your choice/reason for skipping alcohol is no one's business but your own.
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  • Chrysta
    Rockstar November 2022
    Chrysta ·
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    I wouldn’t announce it or forewarn anyone about it to be honest. If you draw attention to the fact that it is a dry wedding, it will only encourage people to sneak in their own alcohol. I would just let them find out when they arrive. Plus, with it being an afternoon wedding, I wouldn’t think people would assume there would be alcohol anyway.
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  • Katie
    Super August 2021
    Katie ·
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    You can put on the website that it is a dry wedding. But just because you throw a dry wedding doesn't mean people will follow it. My cousin had a dry wedding and a couple of people showed up with a cooler of beer in their truck.
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  • Sexypoodle
    Master October 2021
    Sexypoodle ·
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    I don’t think it even needs to be mentioned. They’ll know when they get to the reception. But what would be your reason for sharing such information?
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  • Emily
    Expert September 2020
    Emily ·
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    So my family's Scotch-Irish, so a dry wedding would probably not fly haha - but I have been to other weddings that were dry. We honestly just went out for drinks afterwards with a small group - not a big deal as a guest.
    I would probably let the most understanding member of your family know (privately - and close enough to the wedding to not cause an issue) just so you don't get weird questions on the literal day of. I more say that knowing that if my family came to our wedding and were surprised to find that it was dry, I think it could cause some immediate issues as people's expectations of the experience would not be met.
    In my head it would be better to prepare them on how it's going to go - the same as I would tell people a wedding ceremony is outside so they just set expectations. Good luck, hopefully they respect your choice!
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  • alexandra
    Beginner December 2021
    alexandra ·
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    Thank you, this is what i’m worried about. they are very irish and expect alcohol to be served at everything - they even want beers at the kids birthday parties! i don’t want anyone to get upset day of and make a scene, but i also don’t want them sneaking it in or making a push to change my mind
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  • Katie
    Expert January 2021
    Katie ·
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    I wouldn’t say anything. It will give those who want to drink a heads up to potentially bring a flask or have drinks beforehand.
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  • Emily
    Expert September 2020
    Emily ·
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    Yeaaaah I definitely get it. I mean, if your family is like mine they may flask it but hopefully not be too brash about it. Hopefully this comes across in the way I'm intending - in my family it's kind of like everyone needs at least a little booze to be able to reasonably pretend we love each other. Without it, people are just fairly uptight and frigid. I have done moonshine shots with a grandmother at a wedding - it's just a.... special culture.
    If you truly want no booze there (not brought in by them either), you may need to go with the surprise. Try not to stress too much on it - it's only a few hours they'll all live.
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  • Super August 2020
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    I'd be hesitant to tell them about it at all because I feel like the ones who can't imagine celebrating ANYTHING without alcohol would plan ahead and have their own. (I can imagine a few people I know sneaking off to some clandestine stash of wine they managed to hide if I tried to do this.) I'd also recommend having a fun selection of nonalcoholic beverages/mocktails, so you're modeling a safe/healthy way to have celebratory drinks and there's a bit of a distraction from the absence of alcohol. Unfortunately I don't think there's any way to completely avoid this being an issue, but I'd personally rather deal with sober people who wish they were drunk than drunk people who complain about "having to" provide their own liquor.
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  • alexandra
    Beginner December 2021
    alexandra ·
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    That’s a great point about sober people whining vs drunks complaining. it will probably be best if we only tell a few close people and let the rest find out when they get there
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  • Melle
    Legend June 2019
    Melle ·
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    I agree that i don't think it's something you have to announce. some people naturally expect alcohol at a wedding but it is what it is, they can go without it for a day

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  • Jana
    Master October 2022
    Jana ·
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    You do you. Stand your ground. Again, no need to mention anything as they will find out when they get there. If it bothers them that much, it's not your problem that they care more about alcohol than you. If they leave early because of it, oh well. Celebrate with the ones who stick around who do love you. They can skip out or drink at the next party but it doesn't need to be on your dime.



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  • Haley
    Savvy July 2022
    Haley ·
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    I’ve been to more dry weddings than ones with alcohol and still had a fabulous time! If you’re worried guests will not be happy maybe having other highlights there will help such as a photobooth! A good DJ will really keep your guests dancing too. Weddings aren’t about drinking so your guests will get over it. They can easily go drinking afterwards.
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  • Llcool_Kay
    Devoted July 2021
    Llcool_Kay ·
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    I don’t think you should announce it.
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  • Kimberly
    Super March 2021
    Kimberly ·
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    Don’t announce it at all. It isn’t necessary. It will only encourage people to sneak in alcohol and will make the situation worse. If people can’t get through one even without booze than they have a problem.
    I’d assume your friends and family (at least the closest to you) would know of your lifestyle and not expect you to serve alcohol if addiction has been an issue. They will support your decision. And those that don’t really do not matter.
    Our wedding will also be dry. My FH is 10 years sober and while he does not have a problem being around alcohol at all, we were not interested in footing the bill for his brother to get drunk (and he would). Our friends and family know of FH’s sobriety and shouldn’t be surprised that we will not be serving alcohol. Don’t worry about what your friends and family will think. Do what’s right for you and FH and those that care the most about you will support you 100%. Good luck!
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  • Erin
    Expert May 2021
    Erin ·
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    This, just this!

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