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Tacky Invitations

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Hello, I absolutely love your site. My story isn't as bad as some on here, but I thought I'd share. When I was 21 I was in a long-distance relationship with a great guy. I couldn't afford to visit him (he lived across the country), but he would visit me and we tried to keep up our relationship. Eventually we grew apart and called it off mutually. We remained close friends and still talked a lot. I started to date someone else and of course told Travis, and he said he was happy that I was happy.

About a year after that, Travis sent out a mass e-mail to me and several of our mutual friends, inviting us to his wedding to a girl named Cheryl. He'd mentioned her name to me a couple of times recently, but I didn't know they were dating. It was a big surprise, and seemed a tad sudden, but I'm not one to impose my ideas on others about stuff like that. I was thrilled for him. The e-mail contained all the info for attendance, and I immediately RSVPed, having decided that I couldn't miss an occasion like this for such a close friend, despite the distance and expense and me being a college student and etc. It was coming up fast so I began to make my travel plans.

A week later I received a short, curt e-mail from Travis, disinviting me. No explanation. I was shocked and tried to find out what was up, with no response. Finally a mutual friend (another ex-girlfriend of Travis's) shared with me that the BTB, Cheryl, didn't want me there and had become very upset (hysterical actually) at Travis for including me in the invitation e-mail. She was afraid I would make a scene at the wedding because she thought I wasn't over Travis. I guess he chose to let her believe this despite knowing about my new boyfriend (and now fiancé). I canceled my plans and backed off, but I was hurt. It didn't seem right to be disinvited, even though the invite had come by the informal medium of e-mail. It also didn't seem like a good sign that he hadn't run the guest list by the bride *before* he sent it out. He ended contact with me, so I sadly judged that the friendship was over. (Despite all this, two of my friends whom Travis had only met once *through me* were invited. They didn't go, BTW.) Meanwhile, another ex of Travis's, whom Cheryl had *also* never met, was made a *bridesmaid*, a fact that puzzled the ex even more than it did me.

Then came the scary part: Cheryl started spreading lies throughout Travis's and my circle of friends that I was obsessed with Travis and planning to ruin the wedding. This woman I didn't know from Eve began sending me hate e-mails telling me to leave Travis alone, when I wasn't doing anything. At first I tried to assuage her fears, telling her how happy I was with my fiancé, only to find out that she was rewriting my e-mails to make it look like I was writing her crazy threats, and forwarding them around to Travis and our friends. She then posted some of the fake e-mails to a couple of large mailing lists to which we all belonged.

Travis never did anything to stop her; in fact, I soon found out he had joined in and was trashing me too, only he wouldn't do it directly. The last straw came when Cheryl tracked down the unlisted phone number of a friend of mine (I didn't have a phone at that time) and left a menacing answering machine message. My friend was understandably disturbed about this. I blocked both Cheryl and Travis's e-mails, reported her to her ISP for harassing me, and let her know through a formal letter that I was prepared to press charges for interstate transmission of a threat. Cheryl's e-mail account was suspended. That's the last I heard from either of them.

On the actual day of their wedding, a close friend of my fiancé died, so between comforting him and attending the wake, I didn't even give the wedding a thought-- much less crash it. Nevertheless, I lost several friends because Cheryl had done so good a job of convincing them I was an insane stalker. As for Travis, it's been eight years now, and as far as I know he's still married to her. I can't say I really care whether they're happy or not.

Thanks for reading!


"Please join us for cocktails and vows. Saturday, July 4, 2003. Jack and Jill" (no kidding!)



This has to win a prize for the worst invitation ever. I worked at a print shop and a frantic bride came in with her very expensive wedding invitations which she had ordered from a different printer out of state, paid a fortune for, and waited for weeks to arrive. Imagine her horror when she read, "Mr. and Mrs. John Doe invite you to the wedding of their daughter, Jane Ann, on 5 June..." They forgot to mention who Jane Ann was marrying! The printers hadn't made a mistake, she had not submitted her fiancé's name on the order. In a move that made bad matters worse in my opinion, instead of dumping the beautiful invitations and order plainer correct ones that could be printed quickly, she had business cards printed to insert. They said "The name of the groom is John Smith."


HAHAHAHA!  The groom is an addendum!

This girl, whom I shall call Feather (as she was a bit feather-brained), had moved from Kentucky (where we all lived) to Florida.  As we were just high school sophomores, me and her and everyone else in creation exchanged addresses, promised our undying friendship, letters everyday until eternity, and so on.  Nobody had any intentions on fulfilling these promises (high school, remember?) and we went our ways and forgot about this girl.  Until our senior year when she mailed us all "wedding invitations".

Cheap cloud stationary, handwritten in purple ink, it announced (and I leave his name unchanged):  "Feather and Butcher are eloping to California!  All wedding gifts are best left as money!  Send it to this address!  No donations under $20!  Thanx!"

Urgh.  How about no donations, period?


A few years ago my parents received a wedding invitation from a young woman who'd gone to high school with my younger sister.  The two had been close friends and spent lots of time at each other's homes.  My sister received an invitation as well, but hers included a separate card with information on the reception including directions to the club where it was being held.  We all assumed that the reception card had been left out of my parent's invitation and chalked it up to a honest mistake on the part of the person assembling the invitations.  Ultimately, my parents did not attend the wedding, but sent a gift with my sister and her husband.  

It didn't take long for my sister to discover that my parents hadn't been the only ones to receive only an invitation to the wedding and not to the reception.  It seems the reception was a seven course meal held in the swankiest of places and was invitation only.  Who knows what the thought process was in deciding that this was acceptable and appropriate etiquette, but the implication is loud and clear:  We want lots of presents but we can't/won't spend the money to feed everybody, so we'll invite the 'lesser' folks just to the church and then we'll invite the 'important' people to eat with us.  What really gets me is that these people apparently didn't think there was anything wrong with this or they didn't care how insulting they were being because they sent reception invitations to my sister, but not her parents, knowing the two would discuss it!  People never cease to amaze me...


I lived and worked in a small college town and befriended one of the students there, I'll call her Sabrina. When I moved away for another job we kept in touch through phone calls and e-mails. After graduating from college she met her future husband at her first job. They decided to marry in the autumn of 2001 and although I was not living in the same town we spoke of the upcoming event, and I was verbally told to "hold the date" for her wedding. 

As the date of the wedding drew near I waited for the invitation to arrive. When it got to be only a few weeks before the wedding, and still no invitation, I decided I'd go ahead and send a card and a small monetary gift. I figured this was a small wedding and as I was not living near her she decided not to invite me; however, I did want to acknowledge her marriage, so I sent a card and check. The check, I noticed, was cashed ASAP yet I never received a thank you -- not verbal, nor through e-mail, nor written. I was not upset when I wasn't invited, it seems a bit weird to make a point of telling someone your wedding date and then not inviting them, but it really wasn't a big deal to me. 

What was a big deal was the tackiness of not acknowledging the gift. I e-mailed Sabrina 8 or 9 months after her wedding. It had occurred to me that, not living in the best neighborhood, perhaps Sabrina never received the card & check, and I thought it possible that someone else had cashed it in. She did respond to my e-mail, some totally brief and sassy message about having received such numerous wedding gifts and cards that she couldn't possibly keep it all straight. Well, that was it! Talk about an ingrate. Who accepts a wedding gift, from someone who's not ever attending the event, and doesn't send a thank you? An immature person with bad manners and an even worse sense of gratitude. 

I e-mailed a message back to her politely stating that when a gift is accepted a thank you, or some sort of an acknowledgement, is expected. As her e-mail address is a joint account for both her and her husband, I received a kind and apologetic message back from Mr. Sabrina telling me that they had a thank you all ready to mail out to me, but that his wife forgot to mail it -- a "you know how she can be, ha ha" -type e-mail. Fine, but I never did receive that thank you! I have not e-mailed or tried to contact Sabrina since then. I am not sure why my "friend" Sabrina turned on me, we never spoke any unkind words to one another and I truly enjoyed her company and valued our friendship. Oh well. I am getting married this fall, actually in the same area where I met Sabrina and near where she now lives, however she will not be receiving an invitation to my wedding.  



A young bride in my office was mortified when her groom told her that he wanted to send out twice as many invitations as they had agreed on. He wanted to send them to people not likely to attend. His reasoning was that only a percentage of people would show up anyway and it was only a one-dollar invitation investment that would likely lead to an expensive gift from couples who did not attend.

He's an business major. I suspect he will make a good living.



I was surprised when I received an invitation to my younger cousin's wedding as her mother (my aunt) has never acted as if she wants to acknowledge our existence. It is as though we somehow are "beneath" her (she married into money) and she therefore has had little contact with us except to brag at reunions about her latest trip or redecorating spree on her house. She has made it a point to let us know how much everything she has costs, with whom she socializes, and how much her taxes are each year. Normally she includes some kind of condescending/snide remark about how we probably can't understand the world she lives in. Everyone finds this tacky, but she is family so we smile and try not to look too bored by her showing off.

Anyway, the invitation arrived just two weeks before the wedding. My mother had received hers four weeks before the date. I had been hearing about the wedding for almost a year, so the news of the wedding did not surprise me - that she wanted my presence did. I was further surprised that the RSVP date was a mere THREE DAYS away. Then I noted the "C" written in red ink on the back, bottom corner of the envelope and got a little suspicious. I called my mom and asked her if she too had a letter on the back of hers. She did. It was a "B". We now knew that we, the bride's cousin and aunt, had made the "C" and "B" lists, respectively. I can understand the possible need to have such lists in cases of limited space or budget, but openly to let guests know of their statuses like that? Tacky and insulting are not strong enough words in my opinion.

As my cousin is one of the sweetest, most selfless ladies you could ever meet, we attended the wedding (I could write a book on how pretentious it ended up being) and acted as happy as we possibly could - but it was a real struggle for me to smile when I met my aunt in the receiving line.



My live-in boyfriend has just received a wedding invitation; he's not close to the B or G (he plays sport with the groom), but has known them and both sets of parents since he was tiny. The G told him a few months ago to expect an invitation. Then it arrives...

I'm appalled. The envelope is dirty and crumpled. The address is wrong. His name is spelled wrongly. When I read through the information attached (out of curiosity, since I'm not invited, which is fair enough), I see one hotel is reserving rooms for guests until the end of February. My BF got his invitation in March. It's also for the evening only, but lo! out falls a big label that blahs on and on about their gift list - with our own "secret number" to fill in! Woo!

My BF doesn't really want to go anyway, but honestly! They may as well have just stuck a notice on it that he was right down their list and they didn't give a toss who he was but they'd like a gift. It was sloppy, careless and pretty insulting. I've heard it defended by brides on forums as "the B and G being busy organizing a wedding", but part of that organization involves taking care with your invitations.

I've looked for their wedding list in any case, but the website "cannot find it". Shame!!!



I'm not sure who's more responsible for this tacky story, my mother or the guests involved.

My husband and I were having a small (less than 100 people) wedding that we were paying for ourselves. We'd already decided to keep it simple, just family and close friends, plus a few coworkers (more for politics than anything After all, they'd been exposed to us gushing about wedding plans). Now, granted, we weren't having a sit down dinner, just a light buffet (it was an afternoon wedding and was scheduled at a time NOT usually considered "lunch"), so extra people would be no problem BUT...

Here's where the tacky comes in. Three weeks before the wedding, I get a call from my mother. "Hi, I was just talking with the Trevors, and they'd heard about the wedding. They're wondering where their invitation is."

Um, Mom? I hadn't planned on inviting them. The Trevors are YOUR friends, not mine. Sure, we've known them for years, but I was never all that close to them and we WERE trying to keep the headcount down. I don't know who told them about the wedding (I suspect it was her), and I understand if they were excited about my getting married (since I was a very late bride, and this was my first wedding -- same for husband), but REALLY!

Oh, it gets better. This wasn't the only couple who ended up getting a late invitation -- my Mom pulled this on us TWICE. Another couple (again, friends of my parents, and this time people I hardly knew) ended up being invited as well. Yes, we did send out invitations to them. And yes, they came (and, not that it matters, gave us very nice gifts which they duly were thanked for, in writing, a month later).

Anyway, I'm still trying to determine if these people really DID "hint" about invitations, or if this was my Mom's way of padding the wedding. (I've always suspected the latter, she was always an advocate of "We went to their weddings, they OWE us!") Bless you, Mom, but you really CAN be tacky sometimes!


I just received a bachelorette invitation for a friend who is getting married this summer. The invitation instructed, "Bring plenty of money to show the bride a good time." I think I will be skipping this one.


I recently received a wedding invitation via email at work.  This email was addressed to EVERYONE in the company and was from a man who had recently started working in my division but had worked at the company in a different division for several years.  He's very quiet and I've never said more than "Hello" to him.  At first I thought, "Well, this is rather sad.  Maybe he doesn't have a lot of friends to invite."  I'd never heard of a wedding invitation by email, though, and thought that was kind of weird.  I was shocked and appalled when I got to the end of the email and read, "Your presence is needed and your presents are WANTED!!"  Who invites people they do not know to their wedding merely to reap the goodies? 


Could it be possible that two completely different people submitted the same story about the same co-worker?  Read the next story and decide.

I’m sitting at work, minding my own business, working away (as most of my co-workers do – notice I say “most”), when I receive notice that I have a new email message. I go to my in-box and the new message is from one of my co-workers who we’ll call “Dan.” Dan is notorious for not doing a whole heck of a lot around the office except speaking in funny accents and telling jokes.

The email message is:

You are cordially invited to attend the Committal Ceremony and Wedding Reception that follows for “Dan and Betty Smith” at Six O’clock

 p.m. on May 30th, 2004.  For directions to “The Church” and to RSVP please contact (phone number omitted) or email (omitted).  Your presence is needed and your presents are wanted!

I am not joking, that last line was really included in the email invitation to the committal ceremony. When I looked at the list of people who received the email, I was even more shocked. We work in a fairly large educational institution and Dan had decided to invite the president and vice-president, who I’m pretty sure don’t have a clue of who he is! So, just to check on this I called a friend of mine who works in the President’s Office (who by the way had also received the email) and asked how well the folks over there knew Dan. My friend replied “I have talked to him on the phone twice. And what’s with the committal ceremony and the same last names? Are they two guys getting ‘married’ or are they related or what?” At this point I thought I was going to fall out of my chair laughing as apparently no one in the President’s Office had a clue about Dan.

Dan is a straight man, who eloped with Betty and now they want to have a church ceremony and get presents. But here’s the best part, when our co-worker “Susan” asked where they were registered, Dan replied “We like the color green.” As in all they want for gifts is money.

How unfortunate I’ll be out of town the weekend of the ceremony and reception.



I invited my friend from high school to my wedding, which is on Memorial Day weekend.  After receiving the invitation, I didn't get a reply card from her for the longest time.  Eventually, I received an e-mail from her asking me "what day my wedding was again?"  Annoyed that she didn't know by this point, I reply to her e-mail and tell her the date, upon which I receive the following response: "Ohhhh....your wedding is Memorial Day weekend!?  But nobody gets married then!  Everybody goes away on vacation then!  I was planning a trip with my boyfriend and now I have to cancel it, which really sucks!  I'll still go to your wedding, though."  I was tempted to tell her to forget it and that I'd rather save $70 if her stupid vacation plans were more important than her friend of 10 years' wedding.  That's gratitude for you!



Jeanne, When "Amy," a good friend of mine from college, announced her engagement in Dec. 2002, I was ecstatic for her. "Art," her fiancé, is a great guy and all of our friends really like him. I received periodic e-mails about her wedding plans and offered advice and help, as I worked at a reception hall for 3 years, so I know a lot about caterers/florists/bakeries/DJs/etc. in the area where the wedding was being held. I knew that she was planning a spring or summer 2004 wedding, so I waited to hear the final date. I live about 800 miles away, but have family in the town where the wedding was going to be held, so it's not a problem for me to travel.

Imagine my surprise when I open my e-mail this morning and see a message from Amy. It reads: "Our wedding photos are now online! Thank you to all of you who helped make our day so special." then gives the website address and ordering information. Am I wrong to feel hurt and angry that I didn't get an announcement, let alone an invitation? I understand if she needed to keep the numbers down, but she could have at least told me when the wedding was so I could have sent a gift. I feel like she used me for my knowledge, but I wasn't good enough to invite. How RUDE!



I am having a small wedding, which I am paying for myself. One guest, who is a friend of the family has a new girlfriend who I did not invite due to space constraints. I have read the etiquette books, and since she is not a fiancée, wife or a live in girlfriend, it was perfectly okay for me to just invite him. Here is what he sent with his response card:

Thank you so much for including me in your happiest day of your life. I feel very privileged and honored. However, I have to decline the invitation as I don't feel that I would be happy without having "J" by my side. I really understand your problem of having too many good friends/family that you can't invite due to space limitation. So this would give you a space for some one just as important as I am (and maybe even more). Please believe me in saying that it will not have any adverse effect on our relationship. You will always be dear to me!!!! But you'll have to promise to invite "J" and I to your home for a home made dinner.

Love, "I"

Am I crazy, or is he totally out of line? Frazzled Bride in Sunnyvale


Page Last Updated May 15, 2007