Wedding RSVP ettiquette?

Jul!a Jul!a
So my family has some stupid issues, and among them is all the crap I've found out my mom has been getting about my wedding. Stuff like "why doesn't she have more of a say" and "why would she let me pick the date I did". Her response to that was that she never got a say in her own wedding and she's there if I need her for anything else, but otherwise it's my wedding and my call, which I thought was awesome. But there's something that my mom and I have a slight disagreement on, the RSVP's. I feel that everybody, even family, should take the time to send back the little note that I've already stamped for them if they want to go. It's not taking that much time out of anybody's day and my thinking is that if you can't be bothered to take 30 seconds to write your name and a number and drop it in the mail box, then I can't be bothered to try and seat you at my wedding. She thinks I should still have a spot for the family members that didn't reply.

Quite honestly, I know the few family members that haven't responded yet are responsible for most of the shit giving and I don't overly want them there anyway. What do you guys think?
11/16/2010
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DeliciousSurprise DeliciousSurprise
Weddings are expensive! Why should you have to pay for someone to be there who might not even show up? I would recommend that you suggest that your mother call them to ensure their attendance--if she is so concerned that they should be there, it won't be that hard for her to make those calls.
11/16/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
I'm going to give it until after Thanksgiving, since people seem so intent on "saving me/them" postage even tho the return envelope is already stamped...

She said she'd ask at Thanksgiving for me, but quite honestly as far as family is concerned, I'd think that'd be a priority to let them know.

Thanks for your input
11/16/2010
LicentiouslyYours LicentiouslyYours
I have a couple questions.

1. Are you serving a meal or food that you are charged for "by the head?"

2. Who is footing the bill? You or your parents?

If you are not being charged per plate and in need of a super accurate head count or if mom is paying for the reception costs anyway I'd say let it go... there's plenty to worry about without getting agitated over a group of people who, in spite of making it ridiculously easy for them, won't do the polite thing and RSVP. If your mom wants to pay for people who might not show, that's her deal.

If you have to pay, however, then it should be your call. One note, hotels and catering companies usually prepare 10% more than what you order. For example, if you give them a 100 person head count, there will be enough food for 110 people (approximately)so if a few rude people do show without RSVPing... you should be covered.

As far as the critics...there will always be some. Everybody has their own idea of how your wedding should be conducted. But it's YOUR wedding and it's a day entirely about YOU and your future husband. Nobody is entitled to complain about how you conduct your wedding (unless they are paying the bill and think you are spending too much money). They will, of course, but you are not required to listen to said complaints. If it were me, I'd ask my mom to keep the knowledge that some people don't like how you are doing things to herself.

Like I said, there's enough stress involved in wedding planning without people adding to it unnecessarily.
11/17/2010
ScottA ScottA
The sad thing is that many people don't RSVP but will still show up. What can you do? Unless you want to go to the trouble of delegating someone to be a bouncer and dealing with the potentially hurt feelings associated with this you'll probably not be able to do anything about it.


I'd say shoot those likely to come (or even all of the guests who haven't responded) an e-mail asking them to please respond. Not sure if you can point out that you would "like to have enough food for them, and if they do not respond you have no way of knowing to plan for them", but every bit helps.
11/17/2010
Anne Ardeur Anne Ardeur
We had a lot of people fail to RSVP if they weren't coming; we ended up deciding that if they didn't let us know they weren't coming, either through RSVP, phone, letting me/close family know, then we wouldn't count them. And none of them did show up. We also had a few people who did RSVP not show, mainly older relatives who weren't well enough to attend on the day, so even if a few extras had turned up we would have been okay.

From the other side of it, a lot of people don't know if they can get the time off work/if they can find a babysitter/if they have other plans at the time the invitations are sent out. And sometimes it just slips their mind. I know I've lost a wedding invitation before RSVPing, though we made sure to let the groom, who was a friend of my husband's, know that we were definitely going.

I know my husband's work won't let their employees book vacation time more than two months in advance. We've been screwed over a few times where we've had to book a vacation more than two months ahead, but by the time he was allowed to request the vacation time he couldn't get the time off.

So, basically (there is a point, I swear); it sucks when people don't RSVP, and yes, it's rude, but it's not the end of the world. If your mother is going to ride herd on the non-RSVPers at Thanksgiving, maybe have her make it clear (and make it clear to HER) that if you don't hear from them in some way before your RSVP deadline, you will be assuming they won't attend.
11/17/2010
Victoria Victoria
Quote:
Originally posted by LicentiouslyYours
I have a couple questions.

1. Are you serving a meal or food that you are charged for "by the head?"

2. Who is footing the bill? You or your parents?

If you are not being charged per plate and in need of a super ... More
Great advice, and pretty much what I would suggest as well.
11/17/2010
Not here Not here
I have to agree with you about this, Jul!a. If it were my wedding, I would expect anyone who planned to attend to have to courtesy to check off the proper box and slip it in a mailbox. You've already done the hard part, so what's the problem?

I mean, weddings aren't exactly a middle school birthday party! It's good to know exactly who will be attending so you can account for everyone.
11/17/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
Quote:
Originally posted by LicentiouslyYours
I have a couple questions.

1. Are you serving a meal or food that you are charged for "by the head?"

2. Who is footing the bill? You or your parents?

If you are not being charged per plate and in need of a super ... More
It's a per head count thing, and my fiance and I are footing the bill. We also seem to be the "black sheep" of the family, and I already know that my wedding isn't going to live up to other people's expectations, but honestly, I'm not concerned about that. And it's not so much the food I'm worried about, it's more the principle of the matter. Like, we get shit if we can't make it to one of this family branch's functions, but they almost never show up at ones they don't host. And my mom only brought it up because I caught wind of it somewhere else and asked her about it. I appreciated that she didn't tell me until I found out, but once I found out I kinda flipped a shit and told her to let me know if anybody else says anything else because it's very uncalled for.

I hope that made sense, lol
11/17/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
And I want to thank everybody that took the time to respond, I really appreciate the input
11/17/2010
JEM JEM
My mother and I had MANY arguments much like this. She made me invite EVERYONE in my HUGE Italian family....even those members I have not seen for many many many years....Since she was footing the bill I did not feel right arguing about it. BUT when I did not receive RSVP's I told her that if she wants them seated if they show then SHE needs to call them and ask them if they plan on attending my wedding. I had a lot more things to worry about than where I am going to seat my great great great cousin who did not have the courtesy to RSVP. So, my advice is if she wants them seated she can do the leg work....
11/17/2010
Victoria Victoria
Quote:
Originally posted by Jul!a
It's a per head count thing, and my fiance and I are footing the bill. We also seem to be the "black sheep" of the family, and I already know that my wedding isn't going to live up to other people's expectations, but honestly, ... More
DO NOT LET THESE PEOPLE MAKE YOU CRAZY. It's your wedding, and fuck them if they are not sincerely happy for you. Seriously. Would you care if they weren't related to you? No. So why does it matter what they say? Don't let the illusion of family make you nuts. The real family you have will be there - and that is all that matters - that the people who love you and are happy for you will be there to celebrate your marriage. You are better off not having the naysayers come and grumble on your beautiful day.
11/17/2010
Airen Wolf Airen Wolf
Quote:
Originally posted by Jul!a
So my family has some stupid issues, and among them is all the crap I've found out my mom has been getting about my wedding. Stuff like "why doesn't she have more of a say" and "why would she let me pick the date I did". ... More
You should look up what Emily Post has to say on the deal...I believe she says you should always respond promptly as a matter of courtesy. There is too much planning involved in a wedding for people to be idiots about responding! A simple phone call isn't too much to ask even!
11/17/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
I seriously all of you tons. At this point, I'm only missing RSVP's (I think) for one branch of my family that I'm not all that worried about seeing. I'm not terribly fond of them and don't care if they don't show. Even if I have to pay for their food, cuz I think this place lets us take extras home. Although now I do have to deal with my cranky grandma who is convinced I'm trying to not invite her even tho I sent the invite. I'm gonna go drop one in her mailbox in a few minutes, lol.
11/18/2010
J's Alley J's Alley
Quote:
Originally posted by Jul!a
So my family has some stupid issues, and among them is all the crap I've found out my mom has been getting about my wedding. Stuff like "why doesn't she have more of a say" and "why would she let me pick the date I did". ... More
Wedding etiquette 101:

1. If you receive an invite you RSVP...NO.MATTER.WHAT. Period. If you don't and they don't have a seat or meal for you: Tough shit, you should have RSVPed like you were supposed to.

2. If you get invited and are NOT attending...you send a gift anyway...because it is considered proper.

These are actual rules that are followed in formal wedding settings. My sister's mom didn't RSVP...there was no seat for her. My sister said "I guess we will get a folding chair and McDonald's." It is only right...when I get wedding invites the RSVP is sent back within 3 days TOPS. Weddings are hard work and no joke.

If it is per head and you're paying...do it YOUR way. It is YOUR day, no one else's.
11/18/2010
meganthomas meganthomas
So I started reading this post because it interested me, but I did not expect my reaction to it- at ALL. I'm not going to go into my own long pathetic story, but I just have to say that I got quite emotional reading all this, because I hate that crap like this is what people have to deal with just to celebrate their marriage. My favorite advice was from Laurel and Victoria, especially what Victoria said about not letting the illusion of family make you nuts. To be perfectly honest, I totally agree with what you said about not wanting to find (aka pay for) a seat at your wedding for the people who can't be bothered to drop a pre-stamped envelope in a goddamn mailbox, and this would make me want to rip my hair out! And I bet it WOULD have, because I see a lot of similarities between what you described here and my own family members- but that's why, after quite a bit of wedding planning (and feeling the stress come on), my hubby and I made the executive decision to completely nix the idea of a wedding. Completely. Best decision ever. Certainly not good advice for many, but perfect for us. A lot of girls would be disappointed about "missing out" of all of the wedding glitz and tradition, which is understandable, but I don't feel like I missed out on anything and it was the most stress-free, happiest day ever. Okay, I didn't even mean to get into all of those details... it just came out lol. In conclusion- please, try your very best to not even give it a second thought- because they aren't! If you need to rationalize it, especially to your mom, keep it simple: it's your wedding (not to mention that it's on your tab!). period. It'll make me sad if you let these people stress you out, so please don't!! good luck
11/18/2010
Annemarie Annemarie
Quote:
Originally posted by J's Alley
Wedding etiquette 101:

1. If you receive an invite you RSVP...NO.MATTER.WHAT. Period. If you don't and they don't have a seat or meal for you: Tough shit, you should have RSVPed like you were supposed to.

2. If you get ... More
Regarding your number 2.

Dear Abby says that you are in no way obligated to send a gift if you are invited but are not attending.
11/18/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
Quote:
Originally posted by J's Alley
Wedding etiquette 101:

1. If you receive an invite you RSVP...NO.MATTER.WHAT. Period. If you don't and they don't have a seat or meal for you: Tough shit, you should have RSVPed like you were supposed to.

2. If you get ... More
I think I you. NO, I definitely you.

I'm not too worried about gifts from those who can't make it, but a card might be nice.
11/18/2010
Jul!a Jul!a
Quote:
Originally posted by meganthomas
So I started reading this post because it interested me, but I did not expect my reaction to it- at ALL. I'm not going to go into my own long pathetic story, but I just have to say that I got quite emotional reading all this, because I hate that ... More
I totally would have felt like I "missed out". Part of me wanted to just go to the courthouse and sign the papers and move on with our lives, but the really girly part of me wanted to have my day in white, even if I don't like being the center of attention for that long, lol. And I wanted to thank you for sharing your story, and that I'm glad your day was worry free
11/18/2010
Total posts: 19
Unique posters: 12