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Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

New Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

It's going to be a very personal decision, and what works for one may not work for all (some friends and family may get seriously offended when not invited to a small wedding). I didn't want a stuffy orchestrated wedding, I wanted to have fun, and not worry about the organization of everything. We had a very small 'ceremony' at the courthouse with just closest friends and family, and the courtroom cop lol. Afterwards a backyard barbeque in normal attire. The county office covered the charge for the marriage license for being a veteran, so I only paid for the court costs and the bbq items. Couple hundred bucks total maybe? I have very fond memories of our day and wouldn't have done it any different, the people that mattered were there and everyone had a good time, including ourselves.

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Message 21 of 32
Regular Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

How can you expect people to value you, if you don't value yourself? DEMAND A DOWRY! A cool $35k. "Not a penny less, if you ever want to see your son get married! I can play the waiting game--time is on my side!" Call it being old fashioned. lol

Hmmm, does that company still exist where they'll pay for your entire wedding, but if you ever get divorced you have to pay it back? Nothing keeps a marriage intact like not wanting to repay $60k. o.O

Tip: when planning, avoid mentioning things are for a wedding. You'll get hit with the auto wedding price mark up. "Yea, I need food. For a party. Having some family & friends over."
Flowers? Party plants.
Venue? Party location.
Invitations? Party invitations.
Priest? Party guy. (Seriously, just have a friend get ordained online. It only takes as long as it does to enter your credit card info).
Message 22 of 32
Super Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

I didn't have a wedding.   When I got married we just went to a small wedding chapel in Vegas.   Weddings are for the families, not the bride and groom.  Save money an elope.  That will allow you to see who your true friends and family are.

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Message 23 of 32
Senior Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

The wedding to the 1st Mrs. Backwoods was a very large event and inthe social page of the paper.  I am sure even 40 years ago the production  cost over $10,000 in those dollars.   Her family paid it.   She got what she wanted.  We only paid for honeymoon.


The wedding with the second Mrs Backwoods was much smaller.   15 people.  We had it in Gatlinburg TN at one of the wedding chapels.

The reception was at a local restaraunt.   Total cost was probably under $2,000.  


DD tried to have a destination wedding in Bora Bora as her huband Mr deadbeat works for airline.   Due to costs and travel complications no one came. SIL messed up in arrangements and while going to Bora Bora after paying for Bora Bora hotel so forth they had to get married in Hawai.   They ended up paying for two of  every thing thanks to his errors total cost never disclosed.   Her weddding in Hawai was put together in less than 24 hours we did not get to attend but got to watch it live on video.   Any time they have a disagreement she gets to remind of of Bora Bora  disaster.   It appears the total cost was arround $15,000  

Message 24 of 32
Established Member

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

We had a decent sized wedding but did it as cheap as possible and it turned out great. 

I forget the exact total but we had somewhere between 150-200 people attend. We got married outside at a metro park and had the reception in a VFW hall. The fees for both places were minimal, I believe around $250 total. We found catering for $11 a head which included 2 meat choices, sides and salad. The food was your normal wedding food, and was just as good as pretty much any other food ive had at a wedding.  We also did  horderves, i dont remember the price on that but it wasnt bad. Other than that our only expenses were  decorations, the photographer, drinks and the DJ, we didnt bother with a limo as we did the photos at the metro park we were married at. 

My parents we nice enough to cover the drink tab, the rest was on us. We took our time planning and paid cash for everything except my wifes dress which was financed with a 0% offer and paid off early. 

You dont need to spend 30k+  for everyone to have a great time. We did the whole thing for under 10, my wifes dress was the most expensive thing and the biggest waste of money as she only wore it for a few hours and  changed into a more comfortable dress before dancing. 

Message 25 of 32
New Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

We are recently engaged and there have been talks of having a destination wedding which I've discussed with my fiance and future mother-in-law. She wants us to be frugal about our wedding because she thinks it's best we save our money in case of an emergency and for our future children. I'm inclined to have a destination wedding because we travel often and have plans of having 30 people or less invited. Might as well make it a vacation for everyone included! If I were to marry at home, I'd just want to marry at the courthouse but my fiance's views are generally more glamorous than mine lol. Ideally, I just want to do what would be right for us, what suits us as a couple but I also want to make my in-laws happy as well. Wedding planning is so stressful, sometimes I feel like just eloping. 

Message 26 of 32
Valued Member

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

home equity loan, a couple credit cards and a few thousand paid in cash. We spent way too much...maybe $40,000 on every last thing including clothes...decorations..tip money..rehearsal stuff


My wife and I loved the experience and we have amazing photos...but we'd literally be debt free had we just settled at the courthouse....(not including mortgage)


It depends how much you really want one special day. We had some things above average in expense...others that were a bargain. But a wedding nickel and dimes you regardless. And everything is taxed when you say the word "wedding". Some of my quotes came back different depending on if I said "party" or "wedding" in the emails

Message 27 of 32
Frequent Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

There's no such thing as not being able to afford getting married, unless the issue is the application fee. And there are even waivers for that. I can understand not being afford the wedding you were thinking of, but I wouldn't let that delay your marriage to someone you love. 

Holding each other accountable is key to reaching goals, especially years-long targets with chance for getting side tracked (sudden need for replacement vehicle). This applies both in and outside of marriage. 

I have always felt that parental gifts come with strings attached, or certain expectations such as there actually being a wedding and reception. If Vegas is what you want to do; I'd avoid taking their money if I could and just elope. 

Message 28 of 32
New Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

My cousin probably had the cheapest wedding ever. The venue was on the big property of a relative--with a creek and nice views of the mountains. It was a pot luck, so everyone brought a dish. The "DJ" was a Pandora station hooked up to some speakers. For photography, they got a bunch of disposable cameras and put them on tables for everyone to use as well as people all just using their phones and sending them after the wedding. The dress and tuxedos were hand-me-downs or gotten from thrift stores. The decorations were purchased from party city. The officiator was the pastor from their church. And the bouquet was purchased from the flower section at Kroger.


I don't know the exact budget, but they spent less than $200 on everything. We all still had a good time.


Oh yeah, and their honeymoon was at a Wyndham resort in Hawaii using my aunt's points. I think the only big cost they really had was their plane ticket to Hawaii.

Message 29 of 32
Senior Contributor

Re: Weddings & Awkward Parental Conversations

Now that's how you do it!! I've been to extravagant weddings and weddings like your cousins. The most memorable and fun were like your cousins!

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Message 30 of 32
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