When it comes to your wedding invite list, there's good news: Almost everyone who makes that exclusive guest list will be someone you know, love, and want to share your very special day with. But that's also where the bad news comes in: Because while almost every single person you offer a seat is someone you want at your wedding, there will also be a few people you must send an invitation to, whether or not you know, like, or even want them there.
Ready for a little more good news? "While there is always a guest or two who we need to add out of obligation rather than a desire to do so, a guest or two is not going to make or break your wedding day," says Sarah Glick, wedding planner for Brilliant Event Planning in New York City. "The guests will be happy to be invited, and you avoid hurting any feelings by including them. In the end, it's a win-win!"
So without further ado, here are three guests you must invite, even if you're not over the moon about it.
1. Your divorced parent's new significant other.
OK, we get it—divorce is messy, it's a pain, and it's often a huge point of contention at family gatherings. Unfortunately, this is an area where you just kinda gotta suck it up. Even if you have a beef with your new stepmom or stepdad, do you really want to create more of a rift in the family by pointedly not inviting said person to your wedding? Worse, are you willing to risk your mom or dad bowing out of the whole thing altogether because you didn't invite his or her SO? Regardless of your feelings about the family restructuring, just take a deep breath and remember it's only one day. What's that compared to a lifetime of dealing with a grudge held because of a no-invite slight? Nada.
2. Your parents' close friends.
Although you may not be close with your mom's or dad's best friend(s), it's more about sentiment here. By inviting a few of your parents' BFFs, you acknowledge that this is a big day for them too! Watching your son or daughter get married should be one of the proudest moments for a parent; wouldn't you want your best friend to be there to share that with you when the time comes? Ask your parents to carve out a certain amount of slots for the people in their lives who really matter and then go with the flow. Your parents will love you even more for it. Also, if your parents are paying for your big day, they deserve to be able to make one or two requests in this area. "When your parents are footing the bill for the wedding, you should be sure to invite at least a couple of their friends as a way of saying thank you and to ensure that they have just as much fun as you do," explains Glick.
3. The significant other of your new sister- or brother-in-law.
It seems as if offering plus-ones can cause a mess of stress when it comes to the guest list. After all, if you're looking to trim the list—and your overall costs—plus-ones seem like the perfect place to start. Remember, "while every guest does not need to have a plus-one," says Glick, you don't want to start off on the wrong foot with your new fam. You definitely don't have to make the entire wedding plus-one friendly, but making the exception for your new sister or brother and significant other is the right thing to do and will go a long way as you look to the future.