Author Topic: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?  (Read 11346 times)

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cicero

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #45 on: April 08, 2013, 02:31:16 AM »
I don't think there is always a *message*.

some people are uber-organized, and set up weddings the way you did. and some people just aren't. I was recently at a family wedding where I (and other family members) flew up to 12 hours to be there. with a 2 month warning. missing/miscommunications/last minute changes were all involved in this. so if i *really* wanted to, i *could* think that there is a message here that we are not wanted. but that isn't true - what *is* true is that in our case, the parents are extremely disorganized/dysfuncitional etc. there was no message and I am glad that I went because if I had read anything into the "logistics" that were planned, I would have thought "eh, why bother. they obviously don't want us there", and I would have missed out.

I am not saying that you should or shouldn't go to the wedding; obviously, that is your choice. I *am* saying that I wouldn't read *anything* into this.

Would it be nice if your relative would be more considerate of out of towners? - yes.
would it be nice if your relative had actually arranged alternative accommodation for his guests - yes.
but I see the above as more of a style issue than a "message"

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sparksals

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #46 on: April 08, 2013, 05:22:16 AM »
Full disclosure - my wedding was where I and my SO lived at the time, a plane ride away for almost all family members on both sides.  This was not typical in my family, but for various reasons was what we chose.

I don't think there is any message being sent.  They've planned an event they will enjoy, and presumably think their guests will enjoy.  If you won't enjoy it, don't go.  From your first post, it sounds like you are making some assumptions about accommodations without checking out or inquiring about all of what's available - the B&Bs you mentioned.

It strikes me as looking for offense to take away that they don't value your company.

What an interesting assumption.

i have indeed explored the B&B options and spent several hours doing so. I even attempted to call the one I found most appealing and had the accommodations we need, only to find that the phone is disconnected and their on-line booking service inoperable.  When I asked for other suggestions and opinions, the B&G were not able to give us any.

There is no problem with flying across the country to attend the wedding; it's where they live and an area we have been looking forward to visiting.  It is the fact that they seem to be doing everything to make it difficult to attend. I know that his siblings and parents pointed out how difficult his choices were making it for them before the plans were finalized.

I don't think it's looking for offense to think that people who knowingly make it difficult for you to attend don't really care if you attend or prefer a smaller, low-key wedding.  I'm somewhat disappointed since we've always been close to him and spent a good deal of time together, even meeting up with us Europe when we were there for his DB's wedding, but I certainly would not be offended if he prefers a smaller, more intimate wedding. I just think that he feels that this is a better way to achieve that without insulting us by not extending an invitation at all.

And they did tell one aunt (the one who teaches at two universities) that they would never speak to her again if she didn't attend - jokingly, of course.

I actually agree with delabela.  It appeared to me you were searching for offense.

They sound a bit clueless, but also having a wedding on a budget. 

I don't believe they intentionally set out to make it so people couldn't come.   Unless they are Jewish, I would not expect them to know the important Sept holidays their wedding is between. 


iridaceae

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #47 on: April 08, 2013, 07:21:44 AM »

I'm not sure what there is to disagree with. Are you saying that making a choice is not making a choice? That somehow choosing to have the wedding you want, that excludes certain people doesn't mean that you've prioritized that wedding over the people? How can it not mean that?

Because maybe the wedding isn't about the guests but about the couple who are marrying.

RingTailedLemur

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #48 on: April 08, 2013, 07:27:46 AM »

I'm not sure what there is to disagree with. Are you saying that making a choice is not making a choice? That somehow choosing to have the wedding you want, that excludes certain people doesn't mean that you've prioritized that wedding over the people? How can it not mean that?

Because maybe the wedding isn't about the guests but about the couple who are marrying.

I agree.  I wanted my guests to have a nice time, but when I planned my wedding I focussed on what I and Mr Lemur wanted.

We married in a register office because it was what we could afford.  We booked the largest room they had but were still restricted to 30 people.  That meant we had to pare down my guest list and not invite a few of the more distant relatives.  However, being married was more important to me than having a big wedding some years later.  It certainly wasn't sending a message to anyone.  It was my wedding and if people could come, then great.  I wasn't going to arrange my wedding based on what other people want to do, and I wouldn't expect anyone else to arrange their wedding based on my preferences either.

LeveeWoman

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #49 on: April 08, 2013, 07:36:38 AM »
I certainly don't expect others to provide the same level of hospitality that we extended, but neither do I think that giving some thought to accommodating your guests is too much to expect. Those who stay in the cabins, both those with and without bath facilities, will need to provide their own sheets, blankets, pillows, towels, dishes, etc., which is obviously impossible if you are flying.

And they do have every reason to expect everyone will attend their wedding. A few years ago everyone flew to another continent for his brother's wedding, and we've all gone to his other brother and sister's weddings, which involved interstate travel, if not quite this distance. 

We can afford this trip and do have the time for it, but wonder making it difficult for your guests to attend is a way to keep peace in the family by inviting everyone when you don't want them there or care if they attend.

What about electricity? If there is none, and even though it's in August, will it get cool at night? What are you to do? Bring your own firewood?
  ???

gramma dishes

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #50 on: April 08, 2013, 10:23:57 AM »
On the other side of the coin, maybe the HC is thinking, "this is the wedding of our dreams.  If people really love us, they will do whatever they have to do to support us and be at our wedding even if it means missing class, missing work, and walking through the dark in the middle of the night to pee.  If they don't come, it must mean they don't really care about us."

This, of course, is as ridiculous as believing that not being invited to a wedding means the couple doesn't care about you.  Or, if you are invited and it's on your anniversary, birthday, child's BD, doesn't allow your precious children, is a destination wedding, on a Thursday, on a holiday, in the middle of the afternoon, is located in the middle of a lake...all these things also mean the happy couple just must not care if you attend and should affect your relationship for all eternity.

I think people need to just stop taking everything so personally.  The OP was invited.  The OP even wants to go.  All this is great.  But, circumstances may prevent it.  That's just the way it is.  The OP should send a lovely gift and a heartfelt note declaring just how much they would have loved to be there, but you just can't.  The HC will be sad, since I'm sure they sincerely care about the OP's family and would love to have them there, but they will be sad...and then they will move on.  As should the OP.

This is an excellent post!  Balanced and with a touch of humor.  But mainly, I think, just beautifully realistic.  This is what's really going on and no one is served by anyone (either the B&G or the guests) taking it too personally.

Hmmmmm

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #51 on: April 08, 2013, 11:13:17 AM »
We are having a lot of weddings in our family this year so the topic is much discussed.

First couple decided to have a destination wedding at a remote Carribean island on a Sunday night. Couple understood that this would restrict number of family and friends attending all around but their dream was a beach side wedding at an ubber fancy resort. They got the wedding of their dreams, were gracious when they received mostly No RSVP's (though the mom's tried to coerce family members to attend... if you pay to fly to big island, I'll pay your flight to small island or I'll pay for one night of the $350 a night hotel room. Both mom's were a little sad that they weren't able to celebrate the wedding of their first children to wed with their families of origin which is common in both families. And bride later told me that she had really thought I would be able attend so I do feel a little guilty about not going now.)

Second couple did work around big date issues with their immediate families (parents, siblings and was even nice enough to reach out to some of their aunts to get some input) but were committed to a specific location. So while a date a couple of weeks later after school year was over would have been easier for the extended family (we know this because they set up an online survey to get date input and everyone could see other responses), they went with the earlier date when they could get the reception location. No one that I know of is put out about their choosing location over extended family convenience. We will all be there for the wedding but in our case will miss so day before activities.

In talking with 3rd couple and being more engaged in their planning, I've thought they've jumpled through too many hoops trying to find the "perfect" date to please everyone. But as the  bride told me, the most important part of her wedding is having family and friends there to celebrate their new life and where the event or when the wedding is held is of secondary concern. So before they even started looking at locations, they had the dates ranked by convience for the majority of the family and wedding party.

Knowing these 3 couples as well as I do, I am not suprised about any of the choices they made or where they put the emphasis. First couple gets along well with family but they are never the ones to reach out. They live a very independent life. If they have the option to spend Christmas skiing in Aspen or come to a big family Christmas celebration, they'll Instagram a picture of them on the slopes.

Couple 2 are close to their immediate families and have made comments about wanting to keep close connection with extended families because they want their kids to have those relationships. They'd come to the Xmas gathering but leave early to head out on a shortened ski vacation.

Couple 3 couldn't imagine a holiday that not celebrated in the midst of family. They can go skiing (well, with them it would be scuba diving) another time.

So again, I don't think any couple was trying to "send a message" that we don't value our family and friends. But your choices do indicate where you are placing priorities.

DavidH

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #52 on: April 08, 2013, 11:40:23 AM »
I don't think the choices were made to specifically send a message to the OP, since unless there is a backstory we haven't heard why would they single the OP out over any other relative.  On the other hand, they have succeeded in sending the message that they are either clueless (and unwilling to be clued in) or care more about the location than the attendees.  I think there is a lot of middle ground between these plans and a Saturday evening wedding at the airport hotel in Chicago (a very easy place to find flights to and from). 

If you want to attend, I'd call the HC and say that you are trying to make this work, but it's quite a challenge.  What are others doing and can they recommend any places to stay.  On the phone you can convey tone, make it a discussion and discuss the options they suggest and what you've looked into yourself.  They might have ideas you haven't considered or with any luck as they actually try to handle the logistics they may decide it's too difficult and alter their plans.  I really think this has to be a phone call or in person so that it is a conversation rather than texts or email.


sparksals

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #53 on: April 08, 2013, 12:07:56 PM »

I'm not sure what there is to disagree with. Are you saying that making a choice is not making a choice? That somehow choosing to have the wedding you want, that excludes certain people doesn't mean that you've prioritized that wedding over the people? How can it not mean that?

Because maybe the wedding isn't about the guests but about the couple who are marrying.

Pod! I normally agree with Art, but it sounds like Art is saying that a couple cannot have the wedding they want or make it about them.   There is nothing wrong with that.  We see it all the time. 

sparksals

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #54 on: April 08, 2013, 12:11:51 PM »
I don't think the choices were made to specifically send a message to the OP, since unless there is a backstory we haven't heard why would they single the OP out over any other relative.  On the other hand, they have succeeded in sending the message that they are either clueless (and unwilling to be clued in) or care more about the location than the attendees.  I think there is a lot of middle ground between these plans and a Saturday evening wedding at the airport hotel in Chicago (a very easy place to find flights to and from). 

If you want to attend, I'd call the HC and say that you are trying to make this work, but it's quite a challenge.  What are others doing and can they recommend any places to stay.  On the phone you can convey tone, make it a discussion and discuss the options they suggest and what you've looked into yourself.  They might have ideas you haven't considered or with any luck as they actually try to handle the logistics they may decide it's too difficult and alter their plans.  I really think this has to be a phone call or in person so that it is a conversation rather than texts or email.

The bolded bugs me.  Many people here have posted the same thing.  What bugs me is it appears this means that the HC is wrong to choose a location over having family attend.  A wedding is a once in a lifetime thing.  I think a HC have full carte blanche to have the wedding they want.

gramma dishes

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #55 on: April 08, 2013, 12:19:17 PM »
...The bolded bugs me.  Many people here have posted the same thing.  What bugs me is it appears this means that the HC is wrong to choose a location over having family attend.  A wedding is a once in a lifetime thing.  I think a HC have full carte blanche to have the wedding they want.

I agree.

This thread got me to thinking back about my own wedding.  To be absolutely totally honest, I don't think we gave much consideration at all as to whether or not it would be convenient for our guests.  We simply wanted it to be in a convenient location for us and for a price WE could afford.  (We totally paid for our own wedding.) 

It was intended to be a small wedding and it was.  (Roughly 70 guests altogether and that's counting children.)

I assumed that many of my relatives would not be able to come because they were older and lived two states (or more) away.  I also had the audacity to assume that they would still wish us happiness. And I believe they did.

fountainof

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #56 on: April 08, 2013, 12:31:27 PM »
I think some of the comments seem to indicate that a marrying couple needs to choose things just for family.  What if someone cannot afford to have a wedding with everyone, isn't that allowed?  I think people should have the weddings they want and can afford so if a Thursday suits their budget people can either go or turn it down. 

artk2002

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #57 on: April 08, 2013, 12:55:33 PM »

I'm not sure what there is to disagree with. Are you saying that making a choice is not making a choice? That somehow choosing to have the wedding you want, that excludes certain people doesn't mean that you've prioritized that wedding over the people? How can it not mean that?

Because maybe the wedding isn't about the guests but about the couple who are marrying.

Pod! I normally agree with Art, but it sounds like Art is saying that a couple cannot have the wedding they want or make it about them.   There is nothing wrong with that.  We see it all the time.

Ack. I'm rather offended that people are reading me in that way.

I have said, over and again, that the HC are free to make whatever choices they wish in their wedding. But I'm also saying that those choices do send a message about the relative priorities in the HC's lives. It's not possible to make choices without those choices having some kind of consequence. The choice to have a wedding on a mountaintop may mean that wheelchair-bound Aunt Mildred can't attend.  The HC is perfectly fine to decide to have the mountaintop wedding, but that means, like it or not, that the mountaintop wedding is more important than Mildred's attendance. How can it not be? If Mildred's attendance were more important than the mountaintop, then they'd pick a different venue.

I'm not saying that the HC are wrong for making whatever decision that they make. I really wish people would stop reading that into what I've written. They are free to choose the location/date/whatever over the attendance of family or friends. What I am saying is that sends a clear message that the location/date/whatever is more important to the HC than the attendance of those family or friends. It's a simple statement of fact with no moral judgment about the appropriateness of that decision. The decision is going to be "right" or "wrong" only in the context of a particular wedding.

This is no different than any other decision a HC might make that would include or exclude people. Someone is fine to choose a small venue that means they can't include first cousins, or to choose a large venue and include the cousins. Either choice is correct in etiquette.  But each choice indicates which is more important to the HC, the venue or the cousins.

Again, I'm rather amused at the irony here. If someone came here and said "I'm planning on a beach wedding at noon in mid summer with no shade, no seating and no water available," they would be excoriated for not thinking of their guests; it's happened multiple times over the years. But in this thread, the HC can, it seems, make whatever decisions they want to make without any consequence at all. Would someone please explain how this thread is different?

I think some of the comments seem to indicate that a marrying couple needs to choose things just for family.  What if someone cannot afford to have a wedding with everyone, isn't that allowed?  I think people should have the weddings they want and can afford so if a Thursday suits their budget people can either go or turn it down. 

I absolutely agree with you. All I'm doing is pointing out that having the wedding they want may mean excluding people and that indicates that the wedding that the HC want is more important to them than the attendance of those people. Saying "I  want a skydiving wedding and want all of my family to attend" simply isn't possible. The HC have to choose one or the other. That choice says which is more important, the skydiving or the family attendance. That's all.

I want a new car, and I want a nice vacation. I can't afford both. I choose the car because the car is more important to me, now, than the vacation is. The wedding choices are no different. We make choices based on the relative importance of the options. Either that or we flip a coin.
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. -Mark Twain

turnip

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #58 on: April 08, 2013, 01:07:51 PM »
Look, you started this thread

Quote
What's the message here?

The message is that they are having a wedding that is appropriate and meaningful for them, they love you and hope you can attend, and they understand if you can't.   This is the message every couple sends with every wedding thrown.  What alternative message are you looking for?

gramma dishes

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Re: S/O of The Postponing the Wedding thread - What's the message here?
« Reply #59 on: April 08, 2013, 01:27:34 PM »


...  The message is that they are having a wedding that is appropriate and meaningful for them, they love you and hope you can attend, and they understand if you can't.   This is the message every couple sends with every wedding thrown.  What alternative message are you looking for?

LOL!   So true ... and said so succinctly!!  ;D

Great post!