In-Law Love

June 8, 2011 at 2:51 pm (Willow Writers)

Our Willow Room Bride, Susan, explains how she copes with In-Laws involvement in the wedding planning process.  As she explains it’s not always easy, but there are strategies to get your way and keep the peace!

In-Laws.  Can’t live with them, can’t kill them (a friend of mine once said).  Ok, so maybe I’m exaggerating, but in-laws can sometimes be a pain in the butt.  Whether you get along swimmingly with your fiancé’s family or you have glorious dreams about setting them on fire, you will eventually come to a point in the wedding planning process when you don’t agree and nothing can sway your opinion, (much to the dismay of your fiancé, although he will get over it, I promise).

So what do you do?  Well I guess that depends on the aspect you are disagreeing on.  It can be anything from the colors of the wedding, the location of the ceremony or even the BIG dispute over who is paying for what.  Personally speaking, most disagreements can be easily fixed.  Most of the time disagreements are about small things over which we start to get stubborn, such as the colors of the napkins.  You have to ask yourself in these times, “Who in their right mind is going to care about the color of the napkins?” Who is actually going to go home and say to their friends and family, “Did you see their napkins? They were awful.” NO ONE!  The only person who cares about things like that is you!  Honestly.  That’s why the first step in the disagreement is always figuring out whether it’s important enough to fight over.  If it isn’t, maybe you should let your in-laws have a say, especially if they are contributing to the wedding.  If you give them a small thing you DON’T really care about, then you have more chances to make the final decision on aspects that you actually DO care about.  If it is something important, such as the shape of the wedding cake (I always wanted round, and it was a big deal to me) or your dress, explain in an understanding, yet firm way, “I appreciate your thoughts and advice on my choices, but I’ve decided that I’m going with the round, delicious cake because it’s a better fit for myself and fiancé.”  Yeah, yeah, I know, easier said than done, but being polite but firm always works better than being a b****.  Most of the time, in the end, your in-laws won’t care.  If they do, they will most of the time get over it, even though it might take a while.  If they don’t, you might want to involve fiancé, not that he shouldn’t have been in the first place, but maybe have him talk to them.

One of the biggest arguments in any wedding is MONEY.  Now traditionally speaking you can always Google a list of who contributes what.  My thoughts?  It’s year 2011 Not 1950. This means you can mix up who pays.  Maybe your parents aren’t as well off as his, or maybe you and your fiancé want to contribute the majority of the bill.  Either way, be open and HONEST about your thoughts.  Your parents aren’t contributing?  His parents aren’t contributing?  Yeah, I won’t lie, it sucks.  Whether you wanted the actual money or just the gesture, it’s not easy when someone isn’t pulling their weight.  My advice? Have a discussion about it with your fiancé, and he might have an idea on how to go about bringing up the topic.   At the end of the day, it’s up to them on whether or not they are going to contribute.  A way to think of it, anything they give we will appreciate and if they don’t, they don’t.  Nothing will change that so you might as well not keep thinking about it.  I know it’s hard and at times you want to pull your hair out, or better yet, pull their hair out!  You might even daydream of making a speech at the wedding to thank yourself for all YOUR hard work, just to let everyone know, who DIDN’T help out.  (I have that wonderful dream sometimes, because you know when that day comes, everyone will want to eat YOUR great food, and drink YOUR open bar, and stuff their faces full of YOUR cookies, but in reality, they don’t deserve them!)

So at times like these, I appreciate wine and/or aspirin, and friends and my fiancé who understand that sometimes a wedding is HELL, but it’s my wedding none-the-less and it will be perfect, whether anyone helps out or not.  Remember, things can only get to you when you let them.  Stay calm, focused, and realize this is about love, not just cake and dresses.

 Wishing you luck in your wedding planning,

Susan

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