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Dedicated August 2021

Uninviting a Guest

Jillian, on June 7, 2021 at 8:26 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 11
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Hello fellow brides,


So I thought having to postpone in a pandemic was going to be our biggest problem, but...

Some background: My FH's cousin died a couple months before we sent out our Save the Dates. It wasn't unexpected. He'd been sick for a long time. When my in-laws submitted their part of the guest list, they included his widow. I expressed that I felt a little funny inviting a recent widow to a wedding, especially since we don't know her at all. I've never met her and my fiancé only met her once. My in-laws, however, were insistent. After repeated confirmations with them, we sent her a Save the Date. And when we postponed the wedding due to COVID, we sent her a new Save the Date.

Shortly after the second send, my in-laws called and said there was some drama between her and my FH's aunt, her mother-in-law, and that we probably shouldn't have put her on the guest list. I said we sent her two Save the Dates now and I thought it would be rude to not send an invitation, and nobody fought me on that. I really didn't think there was any chance of her coming anyway. Like I said, she doesn't know us at all.

Welp, wouldn't you know it, we got her RSVP "yes" today. And even though we didn't give her a plus-one, she still wrote down her boyfriend's name on the response card. My FH's family want me to call her and rescind the invitation altogether. They feel her being there will cause her MIL too much grief and that they may fight at the wedding, or that my FH's aunt wouldn't show up at all, which would devastate my future FIL.

Anyway...I have no idea what to do here. I don't want to upset my FH's family and I don't want to have this conflict be a part of my wedding day. But I feel incredibly rude/awkward/embarrassed calling this woman, who is essentially a stranger and who as far as she knows simply responded to an invitation, and telling her she isn't welcome.

Mostly I just need to vent about this, but I'd appreciate any advice, whether you've been in a similar situation or not. What would you do if you were me?

11 Comments

Latest activity by Meghan, on June 8, 2021 at 9:53 AM
  • Sarah
    Master September 2019
    Sarah ·
    • Flag
    Well my first piece of advice is that this is FH’s family and he should be the one handling this. I don’t really know how you go about uninviting someone, but he could call and let her know that you can’t accommodate her boyfriend. Maybe she’ll decline if she can’t bring him.
    • Reply
  • Lunajay
    Super December 2022
    Lunajay ·
    • Flag

    I am sorry you had to go through this. I would have just been on someone's bad side, because I wouldn't have invited her. By the end of the day YOU sent her an invitation so, you you need to be the one to tell her she can't come. I'd lie and say we don't have room due to COVID we had to downsize. sorry but that's what I would do. GOOD Luck

    • Reply
  • J
    Dedicated August 2021
    Jillian ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    You're right. I feel somewhat responsible because he was fine with not sending her invitation and if we hadn't, this could have all been avoided. But it's probably better if he talks to her. I did think about just telling her we can't accommodate her guest (I think he's a big part of the issue anyway). Maybe that could work.

    • Reply
  • J
    Dedicated August 2021
    Jillian ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    That was my first thought but the COVID capacity restrictions will be lifted soon.

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  • Lunajay
    Super December 2022
    Lunajay ·
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    View Quoted Comment

    Good point... Sounds like MIL has a task to do, or FH can tell his aunt to tell her not to come. I mean not your side of the family.

    • Reply
  • W
    Super September 2020
    Willow ·
    • Flag
    Your in laws are really overstepping.


    The invite has been sent, it's rude to uninvite. But you or your FH (probably FH) should call the widow and say she can't bring the bf due to budgetary and space issues.
    • Reply
  • Katie
    Expert August 2021
    Katie ·
    • Flag
    This isn't your problem but your fh and his families. If they truly don't want her there I'd have them deal with it.
    • Reply
  • E
    Super July 2023
    Eniale ·
    • Flag

    If they want the invitation rescinded, they need to rescind it themselves.

    They are the ones who insisted she be on the guest list in the first place. Now they don't want her there? That's their problem.

    It would be incredibly rude of you to do this. And you are not the one who messed up, they are. Your FH's family is the one that is having or caused this drama, he needs to be the one to deal with this.

    • Reply
  • Mcskipper
    Master July 2018
    Mcskipper ·
    • Flag
    She replied for an extra person and no one gets to do that. I’d handle it the same way I would if any guest did that— reach out and say “hi, we got your rsvp, but noticed the added guest. Unfortunately we cannot accommodate any additional guests (**note: no excuse or reasoning necessary here. You’re not being rude to say an uninvited guest isn’t welcome and you do not need to justify it). We’d still be happy to host you without the additional guest, but understand if this means you want to decline the event. Just let us know, thanks” ...I’d have your FH do it as he is the actual relative. I wouldn’t uninvite her (that would be rude), but I would make sure she knows she can’t bring a guest (her adding him was rude)
    • Reply
  • Courtney
    Expert September 2022
    Courtney ·
    • Flag
    View Quoted Comment

    This is 100% the right way to go. FH may have only met her once, but he's got more of a connection than you who has never met her. If his family continues to throw a huge fit, that's on them but they're being very classless in this matter.

    Have FH give her a call and just let her know she's welcome to come but you guys are not able to accommodate her guest. If she throws a fit just apologize and say that you understand if she can't make it without him, but the decision is final.

    • Reply
  • Meghan
    Master October 2019
    Meghan ·
    • Flag

    Yikes. This sounds like a mess. I would remind your in-laws that you and your FH did not want to invite her to begin with, but they insisted. Then tell them that you will not uninvite her because that is rude. If they have a problem with it, oh well. It's not their wedding, even though they seem to think it is since they have been dictating your guest list.

    You could always send her a message letting her know that you do not have the capacity for her to bring a plus one. That might deter her from coming!

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