R.D. asks from Richmond, VA on November 08, 2010
So I Get This Call from My Father...
First of all, I have to give a huge THANK YOU to everyone who reads my relationship questions, because I know this is a moms site to ask about babies and children, and I ask a LOT of relationship questions, LOL. You're open and honest opinions are so valuable! Greatly appreciated, thanks ladies :)
Second, my dad called me the other day... apparently, at my brothers wedding recently, my BF had pulled my father aside and started asking questions, like how much my parents were willing to spend on OUR wedding, what our budget is, what's off limits, etc... I had no idea this conversation was even taking place! My BF never mentioned it to me, so I don't really see any need to bring it up to him. I trust there was a reason he asked my dad in private ;)
Well, my dad's all mad about this. He says that it was inappropriate for my BF to have asked him (yikes) and that is personal information that I should have addressed with him. I sort of agree, but again, I had no idea this convo even took place. My dad told me that tradtionally, a woman's parents pay for the wedding if she's lived with them up until that point.
I've done things a bit backwards, well, VERY backwards. I've been out of the house since I was 16 years old, never NOT ONCE asked my parents for money, worked my way through school, and have always taken care of our 3 children. I know that the bride's parents paying for the wedding is a tradtion, however, seeing as I've never borrowed any money from them in over a decade of living on my own, I feel like this is unfair. Pretty much, they're saying they won't pay anything.
My parents paid for my 2 brothers to go to college (JMU and UVA, OMG! $$$$!!!) I paid for my own college. I feel like this in itself and the fact that I'm raising 3 kids without ever asking for help kind of justifies that I deserve to have a nice wedding without having to pay for it myself. Moreso, if I do have to pay for my own wedding, I can assure you that my parents will NOT be invited! I'm mad that my dad's mad at this! This has been a real slap in the face. I could have relied on my parents for the past 10 years and THEN had then pay for a wedding, but I was responsible and very adult at a very young age... I just feel like I deserve better.
What do you think?
And yes, I'd probably still invite my parents, but only if they show us support and respect.
So What Happened?™
To answers some questions: I had a convo with my mom ages ago about wedding budget, she said the same thing my dad is saying now; my parents love my BF, and vice versa, everyone is very close knit; I used to have a very rocky relationship with my parents which is now mended (due to a lot of hard work on my part, basically excepting them for the crazy, but loveable, people that they are)... I know my BF shouldn't have asked, but I know there was way more to their wedding convo than just budget. My BF would never just flat out ask that, I know my dad left a lot of the conversation out and focused on what upset him, because that's just my dad. <--- I just realized how contradictory all that sounded, LOL!!... thanks for bearing with me ladies ;) My parents are being stubborn about this for some reason, I just think it's silly to blame tradition on the fact that they don't feel like paying for something. If $ was tight, no one would understand that more than me, all they would have to do is tell me... no, BF hasn't proposed yet, that was the premise of the rest of the convo my dad wouldn't go into detail about.
More background.... left the house at 16 because I was the one responsible for raising my 2 little brothers to the point it was affecting my schooling. They needed to learn to be parents and take responsibility for their kids and not put that kind of pressure on me, who was still a child at the time. Things were instantly better in our relationship once I left and they opened their eyes. they're not bad people by ay means.... just strange.
S.A. answers from New York on November 08, 2010
It sounds like your brothers did well in school and pleased your parents.In return they very generously, paid for their college. You,on the other hand, moved out at sixteen, got pregnant, etc...and I'm sorry to say but however responsible you feel you have been, this is dissapointing to your parents. I'm sure that they were hoping you would have had a better start in life. I also think it was rude of your BF who hasn't even proposed yet to ask your father what he was planning to pay for your wedding, or for anything. That is between you and your parents. I'm very sorry, but I agree with your Dad.
11 moms found this helpful
T.M. answers from Philadelphia on November 08, 2010
You probably won't like my response, but here goes....
Life isn't fair! I'm sure you've learned that by now. Your parents are not obligated to pay for your wedding. It's your wedding, not theirs! So far you've paid for everything in life...why start expecting them to pay for an unnecessary wedding now? Not that you getting married is unnecessary, but an expensive, extravagent wedding is. You are the one who decided that your parents were irresponsible and strange, so what makes you think that these irresponsible, strange people would want to pay for your wedding?
Continue to live your life and be happy seperate from your parents. That in and of itself will, over the course of your lifetime, pay you a lot more happiness then getting a few grand from your parents for a wedding.
9 moms found this helpful
D.P. answers from Pittsburgh on November 08, 2010
I'm not intending this to sound harsh, but sometimes a person a little further away sees things more simply.
•If your BF was asking for your "hand" then HE needs to tell you that. Ask BF about the conversation. This has potential to become a big rift in the family and you need ALL info to act accordingly!
•You left home at 16, now have 3 kids and live with BF for quite sometime I'm assuming. I'm sorry but if your parents choose to contribute your wedding, that's their decision.
•I do feel that to expect your parents to pay for a wedding for a mother of 3 is a bit ridiculous. You're a grown woman and mom! Why would you (or BF) expect that?
•I do feel you deserve a "nice wedding" (everyone does!) but I'm not a bigger-is-better, elaborate-is-king kind of person. You and BF should plan as "nice" a wedding as your budget allows. IF your parents offer to fund the flowers, cake or food, accept graciously. No one wants to feel hijacked into paying for anything. If they don't offer, don't take it personally.
•Yes, maybe your siblings received college tuition, etc., from your parents but you made your own choices in life so this is the path you find yourself on.
•It's a GREAT thing to be independent! Talk to your BF and plan what the two of you want to do. Even a small, simple ceremony can outshine the most lavish wedding--because you heart is in it! :-)
•Remember, respect begets respect. Them not paying is not necessarily a sign of disrespect.
Best of luck!
6 moms found this helpful
S.B. answers from Wichita on November 08, 2010
I think a full grown adult who has lived apart from her parents for 16 years should pay for her own wedding. Hell, I paid for my own wedding straight out of college. I understand that you feel slighted because they paid for your brothers to go to college, but I cant believe, especially if your mother previously told you that they weren't paying for it, that you believed they would.
5 moms found this helpful
A.F. answers from Columbus on November 08, 2010
I think your BF was really out of line for talking to your Dad about the financial part of the wedding. Your Dad has a reason to be upset. I think you should just drop it for now and YOU talk to your parents when your BF actually ponies up a ring :) And don't be surprised if they still don't pay for everything. My husband & I paid 100% of our wedding. I am a lot like you, moved out when I was young, took care of myself financially, we had two kids before we got married, etc. I did not ask my parents for a dime and they didn't offer (they paid for my older three sisters wedding). They knew I am very independent and did everything for myself and just b/c it was my wedding, wasn't going to change that part of me. I had control of my whole wedding and didn't have someone holding something over me, Well, I'm paying for the wedding so I think you should do this, things you hear that happen to other brides.
Good luck and please don't let money come between you and your family.
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L.M. answers from Philadelphia on November 08, 2010
Please don't let what should be a joyful event bringing together two families turn into a chance to punish your parents for not paying for your college education!
Seriously... people get so crazy about weddings... as if we're all entitled to break the bank because its OUR DAY. Don't be one of those bridezillas.
If you do end up paying for it yourself, please invite your parents. I was estranged from my father when I got married, so he did not attend. There is still a sadness in my heart about that.
Weddings are one of those things that people (family, friends, your children) will always remember. Let them remember you being gracious, even if that kindness wasn't deserved. Take the high road, you won't regret it.
5 moms found this helpful
S.G. answers from Oklahoma City on November 08, 2010
I agree with your dad, your bf shouldn't have asked him "how much are you willing to pay for us" he picked the WRONG time. your parents don't have to buy you a wedding as i'm sure you know. however, i don't think it's right for a parent to do one thing for one child and not the other (assuming it's a perfect world). maybe they feel you've let them down? maybe they don't necessarily care for your bf (i sure as hell wouldn't pay for a child's wedding if i wasn't estatic at who they are marrying)
maybe invite them over for coffee or something just YOU and them, leave bf out of the entire meeting and make sure you guys are on the same page before it's over
4 moms found this helpful
J.S. answers from Chicago on November 08, 2010
Honey, your parents don't owe you a wedding. You have to realize that you came to this place from the choices YOU made. I'm sure if you would have played ball with your parents instead of rebelling, things would be different. Is that fair? No, but that is life.
You are an adult - if you need their help in creating the wedding you want, then you need to ask for it. They have the right to say no. But to expect for them to foot the bill after you've been out on your own for so long is, for lack of a better word, bratty. And on top of it to retailiate by not inviting your parents to your wedding is very childish.
For what it's worth, your BF was out of line. It's not his place to talk to your parents about money! If I were your dad, I'd be angry too. You and your BF owe your parents an apology.
ETA: My husband and I paid for our own wedding. My mom did buy my dress and some extras that she wanted at our reception.
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