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It’s My Wedding and I’ll Inconvenience You If I Want To

This Monday my co-worker Joanie came in bubbling with excitement over how well her daughter’s wedding had gone last weekend.  She’s been working really hard to plan everything out and other then a little rain, things seemed to go well.  I was surprised to learn that a few other co-workers had attended and asked Sally, “Oh, I didn’t know you were close with Joanie’s daughter, how did you like the wedding?”   Joanie was in earshot and said, “You know it’s my party too!  I’ll tell you what I told my daughter, ‘I’m the one writing the checks and this was probably the biggest party I’ll ever get to throw so I get to call the shots and I get to invite all my friends. Period.'”  She got pretty worked up, this speech was given complete with sharp finger pointing to the air.

Wedding talk continued and Sally mentioned how much she liked the caterer and that she heard the ceremony was nice but she had not gone as it took place 6 hours before the start of the reception.  Joanie piped in, “I was so glad that I planned to have that nice long break to relax after the hustle of the morning.”   I told Sally, “I always dread the ‘wedding gap’ especially if its long, I think it’s rude to the guests to keep them waiting for hours before starting the reception.”  Janie responded, “Pshhht!  Who cares if the guests are inconvenienced. IT’S THE BRIDE’S DAY! And if she wants a gap she should get one!”

Right about that time I realized that I had just stuck my foot in it and inadvertently called Joanie’s hostessing rude, so I clamped my mouth shut and suddenly found some very urgent work to take care of.  It was a good thing too, because I think the next thing out of my mouth might have been and incredulous, “Are you sure it isn’t the mother of the brides day?”  0430-10


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  • Michelle P September 12, 2010, 8:18 pm

    Couldn’t believe the behavior of the mom in that post. I’ve (thankfully) never been to a wedding with a long gap, and mine certainly didn’t have one. If there’s a possibility of seriously inconveniencing guests, the ceremony and reception shouldn’t be held at those places. I’ve read a lot of posts here from people saying, “well, if it’s a Catholic church a gap can’t be avoided” and “we had to find a minister we liked and just HAD to have the ceremony at this church and the reception elsewhere” and even one comment: “There’s going to be a gap, and there’s nothing you can do. It has nothing to do with being considerate of your guests.” Uh, yes, expecting people to wait around for hours so you could have exactly what you wanted and when is being inconsiderate to guests. I wanted a church wedding at my Catholic church and then the reception at a gorgeous lakeside restaurant an hour away. Well, that would have taken all day, with a three hour gap, and expecting guests to drive for hours. Guess what?? I didn’t have both! Yes, it is the bride and groom’s day, but don’t put other people through misery to have exactly what you want. It’s about the marriage, not the ceremony!

    • LizaJane April 12, 2018, 5:58 pm

      I’ve been to at least 3 Catholic weddings with receptions 45 minutes away. The only “gap” was drive time.

      The wedding ceremonies took place early enough to be over for Saturday night mass, we drove to the receptions where there were non- and alcoholic beverages and nibbles.

      Early dinners were served and the dancing began! No inconvenience at all.

  • LBC January 6, 2011, 10:47 am

    Good grief! I’ve been to some questionable weddings but none of them has ever been crass enough to subject the guests to a gap, much less a six-freaking-hour gap! It was always straight from the church/ceremony venue to the reception. Occasionally there was some travel time involved, though generally not much, but even that didn’t bother me. A deliberate but unnecessary time gap is really rude.

  • poppy April 24, 2011, 11:56 am

    Agreed. I hadn’t given gaps much thought until we went to my DH’s cousin’s wedding. That was an eleven-hour drive for me and all of DH’s side of the family. Also, I live in Europe, where an 11-hour drive is a much bigger deal than in the States.

    The gap was 5 hours, and that’s a very long time when you are in a small town you are totally unfamiliar with. And after the 5-hour gap, we went to some grand castle where the bride and groom left us parched in the sun with 10 chairs and five water bottles to 150 guests, a great many of whom were elderly or/and tired!

    That’s right, that was the photo session around the castle. After one hour of this, the MOB ushered us like cattle to this or that part of the park because they wanted group pictures, while the bride kept bitching we were not moving fast enough – again, the groom’s ninety-something-year-old grandma was there, acting very gracious, but not able to rush around.

    Yeah, gaps. Because I’m worth it-

    And of course, we never got a thank you note for our present from that dear couple.
    Well, they live 11 hours away from us anyway.

  • bloo February 18, 2012, 9:35 am

    Jenna (comment #37)

    I realize your post is over 1 & 1/2 years old, but I’d like to highlight is as a perfect example of excellent communication between family members. See, the reality is we can’t all possibly be in agreement about all things, so the trick is HOW to effectively communicate and compromise/persuade and clearly you and your mother have a very good relationship with each other as well as a desire to make the other happy.

    Oh yeah…and On Topic – large gaps suck.