Devoted March 2021

Inviting guests to wedding events who are not invited to the wedding.

on February 12, 2019 at 2:51 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 24
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According to etiquette, you are not supposed to invite guests to your bachelorette party/bridal shower who are not on your guest list to attend your wedding. In my opinion, that really stinks!! I don’t think it’s fair that people aren’t considered at all just because they aren’t on your guest list. There are so many events leading up to that one* BIG day, but if your budget or your venue does not allow you to have everyone attend, why should they be left in the dark all together? Personally, I think that would hurt my feelings more if I had a friend who I considered to be a good friend who didn’t allow me to join in on her excitement.
With all that being said, I sent a message to all of the friends who I could not invite explaining that my FH and I are paying for our own wedding and that we wish we could have everyone there, but we just can’t. I also mentioned that of course I would never expect any type of gift from them if they chose to come to the bachelorette party/bridal shower, that just having them there would make me so happy. Every single person that I sent the message to was so sweet and understanding and thanked me for letting them know ahead of time. They’ve all been in my shoes planning weddings, baby showers....etc. They know what all is involved cost-wise as well as having to choose your guests, and said that they would love to still be a part of anything that they could. That was such a huge relief because I truly love all of my friends and I wish I could have them all there, it caused me physical pain and anxiety having to tell them this, but I am glad that I sent this message because it cleared the air and hopefully prevented any hurt feelings or drama. If you would like to see the message I sent word-for-word I would be willing to share if you find yourself in this position as well.

24 Comments

Latest activity by Fwbride, on February 13, 2019 at 9:10 AM
  • CruzWin
    Dedicated February 2020
    CruzWin ·
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    Please share the messages. That is so great they are so understanding.
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  • Devoted March 2021
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    Heyyy! As you know, I am in the beginning phases of wedding planning and I want to start off by saying I really love you and appreciate our friendship. We are currently working on our guest list according to our budget, which is causing some serious mixed emotions because we want everyone to be at our wedding, but my fiancé and I are paying for our wedding ourselves which has made us cut our list down to basically family and wedding party only. I wish we could invite everyone, but we just can’t. I know it’s against etiquette to invite people to the bachelorette/bridal shower if they aren’t on the guest list, but I just really don’t want you to feel left out of everything because of one day....I want to celebrate with you but I understand if you decide not to join. Obviously, I would never expect any type of gift, just having you be there for these events would make me so happy!
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  • J
    Beginner June 2019
    Jessica ·
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    My sister is hosting my bridal shower in my home state, but it's not where I currently live. I also have a limited number of people that I could invite to the wedding which will be here where I live, but I'd love for everyone to partake in my shower and celebrate with me. I was just about to revise the guest list I sent my sister because I thought it wasn't nice to invite them to one, but not the other. I'd love to see how you worded that.

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  • J
    Beginner June 2019
    Jessica ·
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    I like this!

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  • Lex
    VIP September 2019
    Lex ·
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    Ugh I feel the same! FH and I have such a big friend group, but we’re also having the wedding 8 hours away from our friends. We want to celebrate with everyone but we know that they probably won’t make it.
    Plus my bachelorette party would be super lame with only 2 people 😂
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  • Devoted March 2021
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    Thank you! It was very well received by everyone I sent it to, thankfully!!! 🙏🏼 People really do understand the struggle!
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  • Devoted March 2021
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    Lol not lame, just more tame! 😄 I say go for it, just explain the situation and hopefully you will have a killer bachelorette party! 😊
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  • Cristy
    Master May 2021
    Cristy ·
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    I think yours might be a unique situation. My first thought was why aren't they invited to the wedding? In my world, I don't know enough people to max out a venue, not even with everyone on FHs list. But I suppose if you come from a very large family, this could happen. So, assuming there is no room on your guest list to invite these "good friends" then it sounds like you did what was right for you. Nobody can fault you for that. The guest list can be a very tricky thing. I think you're really lucky you have friends that are understanding, and so you seem to be getting the best of both worlds. Congratulations!

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  • Brae
    VIP September 2019
    Brae ·
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    My thoughts on this is that it only works if you're having an extremely small wedding. Otherwise it can come off as you want me to celebrate you and potentially give you a gift, but I'm not important enough to watch this event happen. I know you said that you dont expect gifts from them, but a bridal shower is about gifts, so I'd feel guilty/ weird going to one without a gift. I also feel like if there are guests you really really wanted to have, then you would have found a way to make it work. If you're putting anything extra like fancier food, more expensive venue, or flowers ahead of inviting people, then in my opinion you dont really really want them there, and that's totally fine and normal, but then you shouldnt really really want them at the pre events either. I don't understand really wanting someone at the pre wedding events, but not wanting them enough at the actual wedding to figure out a way to make that work. Again, this is just my thought process, and why I think other people feel the same way. I hope that the people you are talking about really do feel good about the situation, and it all works out.
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  • Brae
    VIP September 2019
    Brae ·
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    Hi. Just read your letter you sent. I was typing my initial response when you posted that. If it's just family and wedding party, then I completely understand your situation and it makes sense what your doing. My previous response was if some friends are and some friends aren't invited.
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  • MrsD
    Legend July 2019
    MrsD ·
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    I'd feel awkward going to a wedding related event for a wedding I wasn't invited to. Unless the couple was eloping, or having a 10 person or under wedding. Every friend & family group is different, I'm happy that worked for you!

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  • Yoice
    VIP March 2019
    Yoice ·
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    Rules were meant to be broken after all!
    I love how your friends were so understanding. I have being personally in all the different situations as a guest and now wedding planning so I totally get it.
    The most important thing is they got it and understood it all and they’ll be there to celebrate that day for you!
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  • Devoted March 2021
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    I expect that from some people and of course, would understand, but my intentions are pure and it’s up to them if they want to join or not.
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  • MrsV1027
    Master October 2018
    MrsV1027 ·
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    I think the best way to go about the shower thing would be to name it something else. The point of a shower is to shower you with gifts. Maybe just have an engagement party instead?

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  • Danielle
    Master June 2019
    Danielle ·
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    I agree with this. I'd feel awkward too, but like PP Cristy said, your situation is unique. For me and FH, having as many of our loved ones there as possible was more important, so we budget everything else around that: cheaper food options, cheaper venue, etc. Every situation is different though, and I am glad it all worked out for you! Smiley smile

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  • Caytlyn
    Legend November 2019
    Caytlyn ·
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    It’s against etiquette because you essentially want to invite people to the events where they’re expected to give you gifts and spend money on you, while simultaneously excluding them from the event where you spend money on them. “Hi, I’m really sorry that you aren’t important enough to witness our marriage or for us to provide you with a meal, but I hope you can make it to these events where we celebrate me and everyone brings me gifts!” You can say you don’t expect gifts, but that’s what a bridal shower is. A party to bring the bride gifts. I’m glad it worked out for you, but it’s still pretty rude.
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  • LB
    Champion November 2016
    LB ·
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    Glad it worked out for you but this is just so ick to me. As a guest, I'd feel like you're just attention seeking. You made the choice to have a small wedding, the result is you can't include everyone you want. It's like you want to have your cake and eat it too.

    Hard, hard pass.

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  • JustKidding
    VIP April 2018
    JustKidding ·
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    Same. Glad it worked for OP, but I get that if I'm not invited either I'm not as close as I thought we were, they are having a smaller wedding, they just plain had to make cuts. I don't hold any of the against a bride and groom.

    Getting a message like this would cause me to WTF so hard. I would feel that that you care to want me to come to gift giving events, but not THE event.

    Glad it went over well. But this really shouldn't be done.

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  • Bianca
    Super August 2019
    Bianca ·
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    Ditto this!

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  • J
    Devoted January 2019
    Jesalina ·
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    If my really good friend was getting married 8hrs away I would make sure I made it there! If i wasn't invited at all my feelings would be hurt. Feel like it should be their decision to come or not.
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