Do I Have To Invite Her?

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SMGray Posts : 84 Registered: 1/2/10
Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 18, 2010 6:51 PM

One of my closest friends from highschool got married last year and had a BIG wedding in the town we grew up in (where her and my parents still live). She invited my parents to the wedding, they went, and had a great time.

Now I'm getting married, and I don't want to invite her parents. We spent a lot of time at eachother's houses when we were younger, and her mom makes me want to rip my hair out. When my friend would come to my house, and when she visits with my family when we're both home, my mom always cooks dinner, hangs out and chats with us, and asks after my friends husband, invites him over, and is generally really welcoming. I do take pride in the fact that my friends feel comfortable enough around my mom and dad that they stop by and say hi even though I don't live at home anymore) but I don't expect everyone's mom to give off that vibe. Nobody makes me feel uncomfortable the way this girls mom does.

When I visit her house, her mom's behavior ranges from cold to inappropriate. She'll sometimes nearly ignore me, while other times she'll follow my friend and I around the house and start strange conversations. Last time I was there she didn't say hi to me for the first hour I was in the house and then when my friend and I went into her room to chat, her mom stood in the doorway and started having a conversation with my friend about her finances. She brought it up by saying: "Your father and I have no money, dear". When we got off that topic, she started talking about marriage and casually mentioned that my friends father loves her more than she loves him. It was awkward, but a pretty typical evening at their house.It also drives me nuts that after over 3 years with my fiance, who she's met a few times, she still insists on asking me "are you still dating that guy?" Yes, I'm still living with the same guy I've been dating for the last 3 years!!!!

My wedding is far from home, so I don't think her parents would travel even if I did invite them... but would it be wrong of me not to send them an invitation. I don't want them there, my FH (aka "that guy") doesn't care for them, and I'm afraid if I send them an invite banking on them not coming they'll end up deciding to make a trip of it and stay the week. Be honest with me, am I obligated to invite them?

"And so I come, to be the one, who's always standing close to you."- Van Morrison


CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 18, 2010 7:10 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

No. Just because she invited your parents does not mean that a reciprocal invite towards hers is required, especially since you not only don't feel close to her parents but you actively do not like them.



HappyGirl13 Posts : 1,298 Registered: 4/21/08
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 18, 2010 7:16 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

First off, if your wedding guest list is at least sort of average size (say around 100? I don't know if that's average, but let's say it is), you will barely notice her on your wedding day. I promise. Unless she's loud and obnoxious in addition to weird.

If your wedding is much more small and intimate than that, I think you could get away with not inviting them ("We're just inviting our very closest family and friends.")

If your guest list is average-to-large, the only other thing I would think about is whether it will create trouble for your friend if you invite her but not them. If it will make trouble, I would probably suck it up and invite them for your friend's sake. If it won't, and if it's unlikely you'll be seeing much of the parents from here on out, I think you could get away with leaving them off the list.

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 18, 2010 8:42 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

Dear SM,

Relax. You are not obliged to invite her.

If you feel comfortable discussing the situation with your friend, honestly, then do so. If not, then don't.

Let me set your mind at ease.

Usually, you repay hospitality with hospitality. I invite you to dinnner, you later invite me to dinner. I pay for ball game tickets for an evening out, you later spring for a movie.

That's normal.

You can't do that with a wedding reception. If I invite you to my wedding reception, and you are already married, how are you supposed to reciprocate hospitality? You can't. You're already married.

That's where the wedding gifts come in. Wedding gifts are a means of reciprocating for the hospitality of the wedding reception. You invite me to your wedding reception, offer food and drink and a nice time. I reciprocate with a lovely gift. WE ARE NOW EVEN. Nobody "owes" anyone else anything.

Assuming you and your parents gave a nice gift when they attended her wedding, you and your parents do now "owe" them any kind of reciprocal invitation. You should harbor no guilt about not inviting Weird Mom to your wedding.

Look at it another way. Some people have giant weddings, where they invite all the second cousins and neighbors. Others have small weddings, with only parents, sibs and close friends. If I was invited to a second cousin's wedding, and assuming I gave them a decent gift, then I am under no obligation to invite them to my small wedding.


MuffinB Posts : 778 Registered: 7/13/07
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 18, 2010 9:25 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

Don't invite them. You've listed more than enough reasons not to and only one reason to.


bosoxgirl Posts : 231 Registered: 2/3/10
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 19, 2010 12:59 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

No. You do not have to invite them. My parents were invited to a lot of wedding receptions (a lot by extended cousins and family friends but I was never invited) We see them often, but I am not inviting them to my wedding just because they invited my parents to theirs.



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SMGray Posts : 84 Registered: 1/2/10
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 21, 2010 1:07 AM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Oh thank you thank you thank you! This has been on my mind since I told this friend I was engaged.

I haven't spoken to her about her mom making me feel uncomfortable, some other friends have the same issues with the mom, and we all decided collectively it probably wasn't a subject we could easily bring up with this girl. She never seems to notice or mention it, and I don't really want to be the one to say something about it (I'm a little bit of a chicken).

I was thinking that they might not even notice if I didn't invite them, I just wanted to be sure! I'd hate to have them be upset with me and then I ask someone if I'm in the wrong and get a resounding "yes." Nothing worse than finding out your etiquette barometer is completely off AFTER you make a decision.

"And so I come, to be the one, who's always standing close to you."- Van Morrison


PharmToxGirl Posts : 5,446 Registered: 8/30/07
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 21, 2010 2:26 AM Go to message in response to: SMGray

I'll give you an example - I was asked to be in a friend's wedding within 4 years after graduating college. We were college roommates and i LOVE her parents. She invited my Mom to the wedding. She asked me if I thought my mom would come and I knew she would.

I got married over 5 years later. I had since moved to VA from NJ. I am still good friends with her, but I don't see her parents. I asked her to be a Mistress of Ceremonies but I didn't invite her parents.

Her mother actually contacted me to ask where I was registered. I felt bad because I wasn't inviting them. She said she didn't care, where was I registered. My friend's parents AND sister sent some lovely gifts to my shower - totally unexpected and not necessary. But I know that her Mom WANTED to.

As it turned out - my MOC went into labor the morning of my wedding and gave birth to her daughter while I was walking down the aisle - worked out that I hadn't invited her parents. They were there for the birth of their first g-child!

Anyhow, the point of my rambling post is you are not required to invite your friends parents.





loislaneisabrid... Posts : 51 Registered: 2/22/07
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 21, 2010 9:23 AM Go to message in response to: SMGray

No, you do not have to invite her. I certainly would not. I have a friend whose mother is like this as well. I honestly think it's a mental issue.

Even if your wedding guest list is large, I wouldn't invite her. Why subject other people to that kind of behavior?


juicygirl16 Posts : 49 Registered: 8/30/08
Re: Do I Have To Invite Her?
Posted: Feb 21, 2010 1:14 PM Go to message in response to: SMGray

Awk!!! Heck no you don't have to invite her!

I know that situation-everyone loves your mom but sometimes their mom isn't always everyone else's favorite...and you don't want to be rude. But, whatever, it's YOUR wedding.


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