How to Let a Relative Down Easy That They Can't Do a Reading at Your Wedding Ceremony

Ceremony & Vows, Etiquette

There is limited space for family to participate in a wedding, and our experts discuss how (and why) you need to be up front with those dying for a leading role.

Let's start by acknowledging the elephant in the room: It's rude for people to ask to be in your wedding. We know this; you know this; but unfortunately, not all of your family and friends understand this. There are only a few roles in a wedding ceremony where people can participate, and it will become like a giant puzzle piecing together who fits where. Sometimes, it's best to remind yourself from the very beginning that being a guest is an important role, too. That way, when you have to gently remind your aunt of this fact, you'll be coming from a place of honesty. Whether you have invited 50 or 350 to your ceremony, we like to hope that each guest fits into your life in a special way. Explain this your relative, and ask her to understand that her presence alone is a gift as well as representative of your meaningful relationship.

See More: Wedding Planner Reveals the Worst Guest Behaviors She's Seen

Have the tough conversation sooner rather than later. If she has it in her mind that she should have a specific role in your wedding, letting her down is going to hurt her feelings whether you tell her 6 months out or the week prior. But doing it early will alleviate some of your stress surrounding the situation and hopefully give her plenty of time to heal. Each person attending your wedding has a significant role in making it a celebration, so be sure your relative is on the dance floor, leading the party into the wee hours.

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