My fiancé and I knew we would not be able to have a large wedding. This decision was mainly due to finances. On top of my being “underemployed,” him taking a cut in salary and us collectively not being where we wanted to be financially, we decided to be budget conscious about wedding planning and inviting guests. I am blessed to have a strong social network. I am an introvert with extrovert tendencies, so though most times I do not want to be bothered with people, I am still the “go-to gal” in re all things social amongst our circle of friends.
One of my colleagues asked me how many people we planned on inviting to the wedding and I said, “Oh, we are thinking not more than 150 guests.” She and her husband basically laughed in my face and retorted, “How in the hell is Nina only going to invite 150 people?! You have 75 line sisters as it is and too many damn friends in New York. Good luck with that.”
Limiting the guest list to 150 guests, in my opinion, did not seem like a major challenge. My thoughts were, “If I have not had a verbal conversation with you in the last year, why on earth would you even want to come to my wedding?” I was in for a major shock.
Not only do people who you have not spoken to, seen, emailed, what’s app’d, pigeon couriered, etc. expect to be invited to your wedding, they will OUTRIGHT ask you…to your face. Not only will they ask you, “Am I invited? I hope I am invited. Am I on you’re A list and not your B list?,” they will ask these questions loudly and in front of other people. It is basically the new face of bullying.
So here you are as a newly engaged woman, trying to come up with a budget for your special day, that won’t send Suze Orman into a tizzy, and someone you have not even talked to in over a year asks you if they are invited. The nerve! Couple that with invited guests who automatically feel they are entitled to a +1, along with family members unilaterally inviting other family members they assume you haphazardly looked over and you have a mess on your hands.
I asked a dear friend who got married a year ago, what was the worst thing she had to deal with while planning her wedding and she simply said “people.” I never would have guessed it because she was always so poised at her bridal shower, bachelorette party, meet and greets and behind the scenes while just planning. She always kept a smile on her face and a Thank You on her tongue, but underneath it all, she said she had to keep it together when dealing with people who had no couth.
You would be surprised by the number of people who will send messages via Facebook, Twitter and via other people wondering why they were not invited and also requesting an invitation. It is the tackiest display of social desperation. However, I have learned throughout this planning process that some people just want to be invited, even if they plan on not attending. It’s almost like this card stock with words attached, housed in a fancy envelope is a form of validation of a friendship or relationship that otherwise would not require defining.
I have witnessed friends “getting into their feelings” because they were not invited to an associate’s wedding. An ASSOCIATE! Not a friend with whom you have brunch and cocktails with on a regular basis. Not a friend with whom you had heart-to-heart conversations with about past heartbreaks. Not a friend with whom you consoled when their parents were ill. We are talking about someone you know through someone else.
Just because you ask a bride how the wedding planning is going and she responds in a pleasant manner, does NOT mean you should assume you are invited. People’s feelings really are hurt and it is the most mind boggling thing to me. I feel a sense of relief when I am not invited to someone’s nuptials, particularly if I am not very close with this person. My excitement of not being invited comes from the fact that I do not have to book travel and I do not have to purchase a gift. I am perfectly fine sending a congratulatory note and keeping it moving!
Despite my disdain for these social offenders, I caved in a couple of times by sending an invitation to individuals who I hadn’t planned on inviting. I did not want anybody to feel “bad.” However, at some point I had to stop this and just be honest with myself and our budget. The beauty in the lesson of budgeting and planning for guests was to keep honesty at the forefront to protect me and my fiance’s pockets, yet be understanding and tactful in my delivery of the answer to their question, “Am I Invited?” by…just not responding.
About the Author: She holds multiple degrees, is a natural born socialite, a business owner, an extreme exerciser of faith and a realist. After 3 years of dating and a year of being engaged, she is ready to tell the truth about what to expect when you are transitioning from being a single woman with no worries to a future wife. For the sake of these articles, let’s just call her Nina. After all, that was here “Club Name” for over 15 years….so yeah, introducing Nina.
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