Weddings are celebrations of love, life, and laughter. They can also be incredibly expensive to host, so it’s only natural that some happy couples want everything to go perfectly. If you’re spending tens (and possibly even hundreds) of thousands of dollars on something, you want a proper event that’s going to leave a lasting impression. But the material things—though important—pale in comparison to the soft stuff that really matters: family, friends, and delicious cake.
However, not everyone’s able to embrace the idea that something might go awry during their wedding. They need everything, absolutely everything, to be P-E-R-F-E-C-T. So much so that they go a bit off the rails. Case in point, one man told the AITA community how he decided not to attend his sister’s wedding at all due to how ridiculous the ‘requirements’ for her guests were.
Check out the redditor’s story below, Pandas. Let us know what you think of the whole family/wedding/materialism drama. Oh, and we’d love to hear all about your recent wedding experiences, too. Have you been to any celebrations of love this year? What did you love and loathe the most about them? Drop by the comment section and let us get you a slice of cake and a glass of whatever you enjoy the most.
Anna and Sarah, Team Leaders at The Wedding Society, shared their thoughts on the dynamic between couples and their guests with Bored Panda. Scroll down to read what they had to say.
Some brides want to control every tiny little thing and even go as far as micromanaging their guests
Image credits: JudahArt (not the actual photo)
One man shared how he reacted when he realized his sister, the bride-to-be, made a massive list of requirements for everyone attending
Image credits: Mikhail Nilov (not the actual photo)
Can we just take a moment and acknowledge how on-point the OP’s throwaway account username, u/MoneyMoneyMoney300, is considering how hyperfocused his sister is on the superficial and the material? Ok, good.
Though the story is a few years old, the discussion itself is timeless. The post touches upon some of the most important wedding-related issues. How we can’t expect to be able to control everything that happens during the celebration (though we might want to and, heck, we might even try!). How we can’t see the forest for the trees because minor details irk us so much. And how we sometimes ask too much from people without realizing it because we care far too much about what we want and our appearances.
Relaxing a bit, learning to go with the flow, showing flexibility, and finding fun and even joy in the unexpected are all things that make life special. Trying to control every aspect of a wedding is akin to trying to tame Nature and her forces. You can’t dictate how others will react or feel during the ceremony and reception. You can’t prohibit people from taking photos of your special day. And you certainly can’t demand that all the guys will shave off their beards and that the women can’t have hair longer than their shoulders (unless they wear them in ponytails). That’s the kind of soulless micromanagement you’d expect in a semi-dystopian corporation, not an event celebrating the union of two souls.
Don’t get us wrong, some structure is fine. Heck, you can even have a dress code and ask the guests to wear a certain range of colors or materials. But you cannot expect that everyone will adhere to these rules (there’s bound to be at least one maverick at every wedding) or that each individual is willing to put in the time, energy, and money to match your expectations.
Anna and Sarah, from The Wedding Society, were kind enough to answer our questions about what couples can do to ensure they’re not asking too much of their guests, as well, how they can focus less on the superficial details of the wedding, and how much money guests ‘should’ bring the happy couple.
“Couples can ask trusted close friends and family whether they’re being reasonable with their request. Be prepared to take on honest feedback and adjust your expectations to be guided by what you hear from those you rely on,” Anna, from The Wedding Society, explained to us.
“It’s hard not to get caught up in the details of the day but it’s important to remember that when it’s all happening, it’s really not going to matter very much to you. After it’s all over, you’ll remember the feel of the day and not the minute details,” they shared.
According to Anna and Sarah, there’s “no real formula” for the right amount of money that guests ought to gift a marrying couple.
“The best etiquette is to try and cover your own expenses for the event as well as a little extra if your budget allows,” the wedding industry experts said.
“At the end of the day, gifts should be meaningful and authentic rather than meeting the expectations of the couple. If the couple are disappointed, it may not actually be your fault.”
A study conducted by The Knot found that the average cost of attending a wedding as a guest in 2021 was $460. That’s around $30 more than in 2019. Local weddings cost less (~$270) because guests saved on transportation and lodgings. However, going to out-of-town events cost $660 on average.
If you had to fly, you’d spend an average of $1,270. Wedding gifts cost around $160 and they’re all a part of this number. So with prices like these, adding more and more requirements for the guests can end up making them realize that it might just not be worth attending the wedding at all. And things are only getting more expensive in 2022 as inflation soars.
The AITA crowd mostly thought that the OP didn’t do anything wrong by skipping out on his sister’s wedding. After all, it was pretty clear that the woman valued money far more than the company of her family and friends. Though who knows, maybe in the three years since the wedding, the sister has become a totally different person and has learned what to prioritize. We like to be optimistic.