Author Topic: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?  (Read 3977 times)

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GrammarNerd

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'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« on: November 10, 2012, 11:56:04 AM »
Reading about Save the Date cards made me wonder about this: just because you receive a Save the Date card months in advance, do you really have to save the date for that and only that, no matter what may happen to come up?

I ask because we got a Save the Date card (sorry, can't bring myself to call it STD  ::) ) a few months ago for a wedding next May (approximately 8-9 months in advance).  It's for a third cousin on my DH's side.  Of course we'll plan to go to the wedding.  But what if something else happens to come up in the meantime that our family deems more important?  For example, we have kids, and the kids have activities.  There are some big, year-end activities that happen at this time that cannot be missed (for example, an end of the year dance recital with two performances, held in an auditorium, tickets sold, etc.  It is the culmination of all of the classes and time (and money!!) spent during the whole year).  I don't know the timing of all of these activities right now, but they are held sometime in May.

So if we have a major conflict like this with something that is important to our family, is it OK to give that immediate family thing priority over the wedding even though we got the Save the Date card first?  What is reasonable?

(to clarify once more: we would only be inclined to skip the wedding for a major (to us) event; if, for example, a child had a routine sports game, we would skip the game for the wedding.  However, we would not for the dance recital, because that is the end result of all of the classes and the work that's been put in for the entire year.)

Shoo

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2012, 11:58:55 AM »
You don't have to commit to any event, no matter what it is, until you have actually received an invitation.  A save-the-date is merely a heads up.  If, between now and the time you are required to RSVP to an actual invitation, something comes up that you want/need to do instead, you are free to RSVP "no" to one and accept the other.  You are not on the hook for anything until you have sent your official RSVP.


Sharnita

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #2 on: November 10, 2012, 12:01:14 PM »
You are not committed until you RSVP.  If somebody asks if you intend to go before the actual invite you might even say that you hope to but your schedule is currently a bit uncertain.  when you get the invite you decide whether you can RSVP in the affirmative or negative and at that point you are pretty much locked in.

camlan

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2012, 12:04:39 PM »
To me, Save The Date cards are helpful in that give you the date *in case* you want to save it. So you won't plan a vacation or surgery for that date if you want to attend the event.

They do not mean that you have to keep that date free and clear unless you make the choice to do so.

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WillyNilly

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2012, 12:12:12 PM »
A Save the Date is merely a heads up, not a demand.  So if something truly comes up, well so be it.  But lets say you want to plan a dinner out with friends or a day trip to a local amusement that requires advanced tickets.  The STD helps you from being put in the position of getting the invite and saying "hot dang if only we'd known we could have scheduled this other thing for a different date!"

Hmmmmm

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #5 on: November 10, 2012, 01:27:44 PM »
Yep, as others said, it is nit a social contract, just information to assist you in planning your life. 

jpcher

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #6 on: November 10, 2012, 03:43:48 PM »
Yep, as others said, it is nit a social contract, just information to assist you in planning your life.

I completely agree with the bold above and the other PPers.

Save the date just gives you a heads up to plan your life around that date or not.

When you receive the actual invitation is when you accept or decline.

LilacRosey

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #7 on: November 10, 2012, 11:20:59 PM »
I've never gotten a save the date card so I dont know but some PP's seem to have good ideas.,LilacRosey

rigs32

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2012, 12:17:17 AM »
A legal contract requires both parties to agree.  The same applies to a social contract.  You are never required to attend just because you are invited and this isn't even an invitation, just a heads up that an invitation is coming.

OP - why would you think you MUST attend?

PurpleFrog

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2012, 08:09:13 AM »
A Save the Date just gives you the information not a obligation to attend because you've received one. It's handy to know the date if you need to book time off work in advance, or make travel arrangements or even just budget for the event. It a nice way of giving you a heads up you're invited without forcing an early RSVP.
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VorFemme

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2012, 12:05:23 PM »
There are people that I wouldn't mind going to their event if it doesn't overlap something else.  But I might be going by myself, as VorGuy has things set up that he can't miss. 

During the school year, VorGuy's weekends tend to be tied up 3 out of 4 weekends (football games, drill meets, community service events, practice for drill meets, even a couple of field trips that go overnight once or twice a year, and similar events).   So if there is something else going on that weekend - it is probably not going to get an RSVP until he tells me whether or not that day is already scheduled or if he is going to have enough energy to go (at 50-something, we have less energy to spare than we did ten or fifteen years ago - we RSVPed "maybe" to a wedding that he got home at 6 pm the night before and ended up sleeping late, so we missed leaving on time to get to the wedding).

Ironically - the wedding was in the town that he'd left at noon the day before - but he was driving a van full of students home, so couldn't stick around for 24 to 28 hours until after the wedding....and nobody else was able to drive the rental vehicle....the lease was for him and only him to drive.

Summers, he has summer camps (in and out of town), practice sessions for marching, and some training set up for students who have requested it - July is the only month without school obligations - and we own time shares for vacation that we book for two weeks or so for OUR vacation.  He does NOT give up his vacation - although he sometimes will book a few days for just himself - he's an introvert and finds going to group events with me to be less relaxing than going jogging by himself.

There are times when you can't go to everything that you'd like to go to - time, distance, cost, energy levels, and other obligations have to be considered and weighed.  If people don't understand that - well, that's too bad.  Making yourself sick from lack of rest to go to parties isn't a good idea, whether you are seventy, fifty, or thirty .  Although most people have more energy at twenty-five than than they will at fifty (or even at forty).

« Last Edit: November 14, 2012, 10:21:13 AM by VorFemme »
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Sterling

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #11 on: November 14, 2012, 09:28:38 AM »

Yeah the save the date is a notice that this event is coming up and if you are interested in going you can mark it down but you are not committed until the invites go out and your RSVP.

So between now and then if something comes up you can decline the invite.  And while I know people look at this badly there is also a chance that things may change with the wedding planning and they may not end up inviting you.  I had a dear friend who had her money for her wedding set aside and sent out save the dates only to lose her job and have to scale back the large wedding she planned for a smaller cheaper party.  She got a lot of heat from people who had received save the dates and in the end were not invited to the wedding.  So I always think of save the dates as just an announcement of the possible plans.  Things change.
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shivering

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #12 on: November 14, 2012, 11:06:55 AM »
A save the date isn't a mandate, nor is it a "first in line, first in time." It's okay to never the save the date. Same with an actual invitation. Until you RSVP yes, there's no obligation or requirement to go even if you have no other plans. It's fine not to go to an event because you just don't want to go or because your child has a soccer game that day.

Now, realistically, we all have certain events where due to family/social obligations and pressures we really do need to save the date and attend because not doing so will cause a brouhaha we'd rather avoid. But that's a judgment call based on your own relationship dynamics and not an etiquette issue.

MrTango

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #13 on: November 14, 2012, 11:38:41 AM »
It's been said many times on this site than an invitation is not a summons.

A "Save the Date" isn't even an invitation, but just a notification that the event is scheduled for a certain day.  Who knows, you might not even receive an invitation.

GrammarNerd

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Re: 'Save the Date' cards: when is it OK to NOT to save the date?
« Reply #14 on: November 14, 2012, 02:30:17 PM »
OP - why would you think you MUST attend?

Because this is a wedding on DH's family's side, and DH tends to have the idea of 'drop everything and go to this event' mentality when it comes to certain parts of his extended relation.  For example, he just assumed that we'd be going to the wedding of a second cousin of his....two hours away....when I was 8 months pregnant with our first or second child (can't remember which).  Um....no.  I actually had to explain to him, in detail with reference to books, etc, that it was not advisable to be farther than 1 hour away from your doctor/hospital that far along in a pregnancy.  We didn't go, but he thought I was being unnecessarily unreasonable.  (Yeah, a few years later, our last child came in under two hours from start to finish....that would really have been a good 'I told you so' moment if it hadn't been so long after that wedding.) 

So I flash back to situations like that.  Granted, that was over a decade ago.  But yes, every once in a while, he does have these flashes of the 'drop everything' mentality, so I could very much see him saying that we had to miss *major event* for our kids just because we received a save-the-date card 8 months before.  So I wanted to know if it was 'allowed' in some cases to NOT save the date, and I wanted some lines/rationale that I could use. 

Also, there is wording on the save-the-date (magnet, not card, so it's on our fridge) that says 'Formal invitation to follow'.  So I could also totally see him saying that the Save-the-date card WAS an invitation, just not a formal one, and we had to honor it and forego anything else.

All of that said, please know that I am not looking for excuses to get out of going to the wedding.  Not at all.  It'll actually be fun to go to a wedding again, and get to see and socialize with some of the distant relatives.  But our immediate family/kids do take precedence.  And knowing my DH, I just want to get this preemptively settled in my own head, so if it does come up, I have my reasoning ready.