Happy Holidays! Christmas has come quickly, and the new year will come crashing in before you know it. In honor of this most festive holiday, and in the spirit of the “Dear Santa letter” we have decided to post our last Dear DBS of 2018. This one is dealing with a very common issue.
My in-laws will not pay for anything!
Finances are already a tough subject but when you mix finances with family things can get messy fast. And to make it more complicated most people are more than just a little fuzzy regarding marriage traditions. So, where do you find the answers to age old wedding etiquette and traditions, answers to questions like who pays for what and which side is for the groom? We called upon the ghost of Christmas past to find out!
If you find yourself looking for traditional answers, then look no further than Emily Post’s Book of Wedding Etiquette. Yes, in case you didn’t know someone actually created multiple books that cover the principles of good manners (these are the books that Cousin Eddie never read).
The original Emily Post Etiquette books can be found in many places online. Find yourself a little leary of trusting these seemingly ancient rules in 2019? Don’t worry her legacy is very much alive and still the expert in manners and social etiquette. Her sons, daughters, and even great granddaughters have come together to write updated versions that include topics specifically dealing in issues of this century, they even cover social media etiquette . Emily Post Institute at emilypost.com pretty much covers it all.
So, what are the traditions regarding who pays for what exactly? Here is the breakdown directly from emilypost.com:
“Traditionally, the breakdown of expenses was very clear: The bride’s family paid for the groom’s ring, engagement party, the wedding and reception, a brunch the next day, and a belated reception (if there was one). The groom’s family financed the rehearsal dinner, the officiant’s fee, marriage license, and the groom paid for the bride’s engagement and wedding rings and honeymoon. The bride—lucky lady—just showed up for it all.”
So now that we have the basic traditions regarding finances laid out, let’s discuss how you handle conversations about it, especially with the in-laws.
First things first, you have to actually have the conversation. Not to be condescending in any way, but often times we find that the bride and groom say the in-laws won’t pay but they haven’t actually directly asked them to. We know this can be intimidating but remember you are going to be yoked to these new family members for life. Good honest communication is the best way to start this new relationship.
In this past Dear DBS Blog, we discuss some techniques for talking finances with family members. Read it and make sure you go in with a plan. But be prepared to compromise, it is, after all, their money. Although traditions are often followed, they certainly don’t have to be. Remember they may have a different idea of tradition than your family. So, we suggest one big family meeting, if not with everyone then at least with each side of the family.
Lastly, try to remind yourself that getting married to the person you love is actually the point of the day, not all the things that surround it. So, when things about the ceremony or reception don’t work out, whether due to finances, family drama, or even inclement weather, you won’t be crushed. Weddings have a way of creating so much drama that it’s easy to forget what’s most important. Your soon-to-be spouse is important, actually signing marriage license important, family relationships making it through the event intact, very important- just about everything else, although fun and desired, is extra.
If you sit down and ask directly and are willing to compromise and the in-laws still won’t help, try to remember there are so many deals out there to be found that can still ensure you the wedding you always wanted. After all, that is why we started the Denton Bridal Show.
Best of Luck,
Denton Bridal Show
Have a wedding dilemma or question about planning? Maybe we can help! Whether you are a bride or a groom, MOB or FOB, member of the bridal party or family, or a vendor please send your questions our way and we will do our best to answer them. Contact us on Instagram or via our website contact page.