Storm
Savvy October 2020

In-laws

Storm, on January 14, 2020 at 9:37 PM Posted in Family and Relationships 0 23
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So a little backstory...I live with my fiancee and his parents while we save money for a house (hopefully not much longer) and his parents gave us some money since we are paying for the wedding ourselves. They are also attempting to make some decisions about things like the food, favors, and insisted on paying for an open bar when we weren't really sure we wanted one. I feel like we have to listen to them and do what they want because I really do appreciate the money and a place to live with my fiancee, but I also really just want to plan my own wedding and do things my way without their brutally honest and (sometimes) hurtful opinions. My fiancee's sister is also my best friend and MoH so I feel like I can't even vent to her because I don't want her to think I have a problem with her parents (which I totally DO NOT, I just want to plan my wedding the way I want) What do I do at this point??

23 Comments

Latest activity by Judith, on January 18, 2020 at 9:48 AM
  • Neeva
    VIP September 2020
    Neeva ·
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    Yeah unfortunately when people pay they get to kind of have their say in how things go. I think you will need to talk to your FH and future in laws about how to compromise.

    In my case it's easier because my own parents are footing the bill so I feel comfortable talking to them about the crazy stuff they insist upon. Might be better coming from FH. Also, the main thing is choosing your battles. Decide what's most important to you and what's not worth worrying about.


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  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn ·
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    You decline their financial contribution and plan the wedding you can afford on your own.
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  • MOB So Cal
    January 2019
    MOB So Cal ·
    • Flag

    I think in your current situation, it will be really hard to try and get them to back off. Honestly? I'd probably postpone the wedding until after you are in your own residence and financially independent from his parents. It's very nice they are helping you out, but I think that makes it REALLY hard to establish reasonable boundaries. It is pretty difficult to say, "we're going to make our own decisions (but we still want/need your financial help!)." Good luck!

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  • Taylor
    VIP October 2020
    Taylor ·
    • Flag

    It seems like you're kind of stuck between a rock and a hard place. If you say something, there will be a lot of tension between y'all and if you don't, you'll end up resenting them. I think your FH needs to have a talk with them. It's his parents. He needs to tell them that it's y'alls day and you are open to hearing opinions but the final decision is yours and his.

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  • karen
    Master October 2017
    karen ·
    • Flag

    Although people here say, no pay, no say, I think different when you are living in their house. Not certain any easy answers.

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  • Dayna
    Expert September 2021
    Dayna ·
    • Flag

    I agree with Neeva that for starters, you should probably pick your battles. If they are willing to pay for an open bar, which is something most of your guests will enjoy, it might be worth going along with that (unless you have really specific alcohol issues in your family you are worried about). If you go along with one thing, it might be easier to get them to compromise on other things. You should also definitely get FH to try to communicate some of these problems, but if his sister is also your best friend, I think you can talk to her about it too.

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  • Springbride
    Dedicated 0000
    Springbride ·
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    As someone who can occasionally clash with her In laws, I would say pick your battles. They are most likely trying to help. Like someone else said do you have a problem with having an open bar? because you may find you feel more strongly about another part of the wedding you want a certain way and your in laws may not agree with and the energy may be better spent there. You don't have to do what they want but you should listen to what they have to say. Especially since you live with them don't make it awkward if you can avoid it. GOOD LUCK!

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  • K
    Dedicated October 2019
    KAREN ·
    • Flag

    Like others said, you're between a rock and a hard place.


    You basically have 3 options:


    1. Graciously decline their financial offer to help until you can afford the wedding you want on your own without their assistance.

    2. Have a conversation with them (or have your FH have the conversation) graciously accepting, but also putting down boundaries, essentially picking your battles.

    3. Accept their offer and basically do what they request and only chime in when absolutely necessary.


    In theory, you could accept their help and do what you want, but that's pretty messed-up considering they're contributing financially.


    My parents gave each kid a certain amount of money after my grandma passed away, and said it is to be used for "school, a wedding, a car, whatever." So I used part of it for school and part of it for my wedding. Since this was a gift and not specified, my parents really didn't ask for much (other than to invite one or two extra people, which I was fine with since they paid).

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  • Storm
    Savvy October 2020
    Storm ·
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    Yes see that's why this is so hard for me! The money was supposed to be a gift, they gave it to us before we were even engaged. That's why I'm so torn haha thanks so much!

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  • Catherine
    VIP November 2019
    Catherine ·
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    This comment. 100%. you have to sit and talk with them.


    also if they are willing to pay for an open bar then let them (that is EXPENSIVE). were you not planning on having alcohol at all?

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  • K
    Dedicated October 2019
    KAREN ·
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    Did they specifically say it was a gift? Like is it "hey, here's money for whatever you want" or was it "this is for your wedding!"?

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  • Storm
    Savvy October 2020
    Storm ·
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    They gave it to us before we were engaged and said we could use it for house hunting or to pay down our student loans. We weren't even engaged yet so using it for a wedding wasn't even really on my radar haha

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  • Sweet'N'Rhodes
    Devoted March 2022
    Sweet'N'Rhodes ·
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    If they gifted you the money before you were even engaged, then I don't see how that gives them any say in your wedding.


    But on a personal note, I have never got the whole "If I'm paying towards it, I get to call some of the shots." It's not a business with shareholders, or at least it shouldn't be to my mind.

    I would offer to fund my daughters wedding if I could, but I would never use that as an opportunity to get things I wanted for them, or thought they should have. It's still their wedding, regardless if I helped them out.

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  • Storm
    Savvy October 2020
    Storm ·
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    I just didn't want people to get out of control, so I was considering a cash bar. It wasn't even really discussed because I guess they just assumed we needed an open bar.

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  • Katie
    Devoted March 2019
    Katie ·
    • Flag

    Between my MIL and my Dad, I was in the same boat as you on two different fronts:

    1. My MIL was ALL WEDDING. ALL THE TIME. and had lots of opinions, which had me feeling like I was going crazy. Ultimately, she was just so excited to participate with me as a "daughter" since she only has two sons and was overenthusiastic. Are y'all the first getting married? youngest "baby"? etc. etc.? If you can stand it....just hear what they have to say, ohh and ahh over whatever pictures they show you and say "wow that's a great idea, we'll definitely have to consider that" and move on! You might still be feeling a little crazy but they'll feel like their opinions have been heard, keep them at bay, and you'll have a stronger relationship with your in-laws for it...then go pick whatever it was that you were going to do anyways!

    2. We were fortunate to have all parents contribute to the wedding, but when we were getting down to the wire and my dad wanted to add something or invite more people he would always finish this request with "don't worry, I'll pay for it". This sounds great, right? But at the same time, a lot of these things just weren't what we wanted, whether he was paying or not! To these suggestions, we would pull out what we were wanting and say "we were envisioning something more like this" or if you've already booked, then hey you're in a contract! For the bar maybe you compromise with them and do a specialty drink during cocktail hour, or a champagne toast and otherwise just stick to beer and wine...personally, we did NOT want to have an open bar because we had several guests who we knew could get out of hand and we wanted the day to be memorable and special, and once we framed it that way, the discussion of a full bar was dropped.

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  • Catherine
    VIP November 2019
    Catherine ·
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    That's fair! if you don't want a full open bar i would try maybe beer and wine instead Smiley smile

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  • K
    Dedicated October 2019
    KAREN ·
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    Oh! Well that kind of changes things in my opinion.


    I know it was a gift, but since it was before the fact and not designated for the wedding, I'd definitely have your FH sit down with them and explain they need to back off a little.

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  • P
    January 2014
    Pam ·
    • Flag

    Once you accepted money from them, you ceased paying for your wedding on your own. Of course they're going to have opinions; you owe it to them to listen but you don't have to do everything they suggest.

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  • Darius
    Just Said Yes December 2021
    Darius ·
    • Flag

    I would not vent to your future sister-in-law/BFF/MOH. Unfortunately, it could only result in negative outcomes. I think living with your FILs is a great financial move, but makes wedding stressors amplified. If there is a certain aspect like food or something that the money could go towards I would make it clear that is what it is going towards, so they can have a say in that one area and feel included.

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  • Kaylynn
    Dedicated June 2020
    Kaylynn ·
    • Flag
    OOOF girl, I feel you! I also live my my future in laws and my bestfriend is engaged to my fiance brother (I set them up) and it's a tough situation to be in! I had hurt feelings about my fiance talking wedding things with his mother then expecting me to go along with it. We had to have a frank conversation about how wedding plans need to happen between us first then we can pass it by the parents. Our in laws have offered to pay for a couple of things but my FMIL can also be controlling at times and literally went out and bought us church pews without talking to us first and basically gifting it to us even though that was not part of our plans at all and we didnt want to sound disrespectful or unappreciative so we adapted that idea and rolled with it but then came together as a couple and talk with her and said "hey we appreciate the help as weddings can be super expensive and stressful but we would appreciate it if we could talk about things as a couple first before making decisions about OUR wedding" it was calm and no feelings were hurt and we haven't had a problem since! Just try to have a nice calm, open conversation with your S.O. and in laws about it and hopefully they will be understanding. Good luck!!
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