Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Wedding Bell Blues

I just deleted a very long post about a wedding budget problem faced by a friend of mine.  She is a single parent with three children, two still living at home. The post wants to pour out of me but I don't want to take a chance that she might somehow read this so I am going to sum it up like this:

Suppose you had a daughter getting married and suppose you were paying for the dinner and reception after the wedding but you have spent all of your budget and have NO more money and yet there are more expenses that you need to pay. I know I am leaving out a whole bunch of info here but bear with me. Suppose the groom's parents were very wealthy and were hosting the wedding at their home and providing a very highclass event.  

What would YOU do?


  1. Maybe this is just my modern gal thinking, but long gone are the days of the brides parents paying for everything. I know some people are very passionate about this, but I feel like the couple and the groom's parents should help, or offer at least.
    I have no statistical data to back this up, but I believe having a wedding today is a lot more expensive than it used to be.

  2. We have a Justice of the Peace right down the street. I think he charges $65.00. Real marriage isn't about the wedding. I'm just saying...

  3. I don't really know for sure but I would hope that I could sit down with my daughter and explain my financial situation and not go into debt for it. Depending on how well I knew the groom's parents I might explain things to them and ask for some help there, but I would definitely have to know them well to be able to do that.
    It's a really hard situation. I feel for your friend.

  4. Talk to the daughter honestly and openly and try not to keep up with the Joneses.

    Seems like most couples I know are paying for their own weddings these days.

  5. I'm so friggin' practical. I'd just go lay it on the line and say "I don't have the money for this. Can you help out?"

    The pressure is on your friend but at what expense to her children she is struggling to provide for? I hope she can muster up the courage to speak out. It's up to her, really. It's too bad.

    I'm not against big or elaborate weddings but going deep into debt for just one day is, to me, not necessary.

  6. I would be honest and say I was out of money. And then I would tell my child to chip in and future hubs needs to cough up some dough too. But then this wouldn't happen to me because I would have set a limit and then said its your problem. But then I'm awful and honest like that.

  7. Depends on the age of the bride and groom, the younger they are the more I think the parents should chip in, but not pay the whole thing.

    I think the bride and groom should pay for the event and the parents could, if they can, pay for one 'big ticket' item, maybe the booze or the hire of the hall.

  8. I would provide what I could afford. I am surprised that the wealthy in-laws to be are not offering up the reception site at their local - since apparently they have the space.

    I know we don't have all the details but maybe your friend should be reminded of all the things you can do relatively cheaply. Gather up the bride to be and her mades and get things done and decorated on the cheap.

    Then again, it is only money. Your friend needs to decide how far she will go and put her limits out there. Then see what comes back at her - possibly others can jump in if: 1. more people are invited over budget. 2. costly upgrades in food are requested. 3. venue is out of her reach financially. 4. etc.etc.

  9. Tough one isn't it? I'm more inclined to do things very economically - when I got married we probably did the whole shebang for under $1000 - clothes, food, (venue was my parents' home), small intimate group of family members only. It was more about having quality time with family and it was a great (and cheap) day.
    I'm going to write more about this later today. Almost time for the munchkins to arrive!

  10. Since I just went through a wedding, I handled it differently from the start. I told my daughter how much money I could contribute. Period. (Although I ended up spending double that, it was my choice). Honesty is the best policy. There is no shame in letting people know your budget is done, especially her daughter. That's a great lesson of not spending more than you have! :)!

  11. For some women,it's the most important day of their lives...

    And for those very same women, it's the most stressful. Did the flowers arrive? Is there enough food? Where's the photographer? Why did my sister bring her boyfriend? How do I look? Is that a baby crying during my vows?

    It's so much easier to tie the knot then have a party at a later date... in my humble opinion, of course!

  12. ugh, weddings make me anxious. My 'hubby' asked me to marry him some years ago and it never happened due to various issues but one was money. I couldn't think of spending such huge amounts on a silly party and no one seemed to want to help contribute, other than telling me what I should be doing and how to spend my money. It seems to me that all the parties from the beginning should be clear on how much they are willing to contribute. It's pretty hard to work on a budget after you've planned an excessively large wedding. If your friend committed to only a certain amount at the beginning, it's not fair to ask for more later on down the line.

  13. Oh that's tough. My head says to just say that you don't have the money but I know it's a lot harder to do than it sounds. Realistically if I were in that position I may make the wrong decision and put the extra stuff on a charge card - which is what got me into this situation in the first place. I guess I'd hope and pray that I would find the courage to just tell it like it is and say I can't afford any more...


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