If you’ve already began planning your wedding then you will know full well that there are a lot of external people giving you advice.
Perhaps it’s your Mom, Stepmom, future Mother-in-Law, Aunt, or Friend. & all their advice is conflicting to your own wedding desires. So what are you supposed to do?!
Lots of people might tell you “Who cares what people think?”, but these are the same people who don’t have to deal with the aftermath of offending or upsetting someone within close relational proximity. & trust me, you don’t want to enter your spouse’s family with an upset Mother-in-Law.
It’s a very fine line you walk between planning a your wedding the way you want it while being mindful (& considerate) of other people involved.
So here’s how to plan you wedding without pissing people off:
Figure Out Your Non-Negotiables
Determine (along with your future spouse) what things you both are set on having a certain way.
For instance, if you’re fronting your own wedding expenses then you may have already decided that you don’t want a full meal but rather would spend money on hor dourves. Or perhaps you’ve selected a wedding photographer that you love & will not consider other alternatives that your family/friends are pushing for.
It’s ok to have some things you’re set on doing. It’s not recommended that every single detail is a non-negotiable.
Listen to All Opinions
This one is tough. I believe that allowing for people to tell you their opinions is important because most of the time they mean well. They want to help & believe that giving advice does that.
What isn’t necessary in this step is accepting or choosing to heed their advice. You can be gracious with all feedback, but ultimately elect to plan things your way.
Whether or not you give them a reason as you why you didn’t go with their advice entirely depends on the type of relationship you have. You’re not apologizing but giving context to the outcome of your decision. This is out of respect more than obligation.
Being Mindful of Who Financially Supports Your Wedding
It’s an unspoken rule, but the whole idea is that if your parents (or future in-laws) are paying any amount or a sizeable amount then they will “rightfully” feel that they have a say in your wedding planning.
This is really dicey since most opinions on this range from “they have zero rights” to “I relinquish all control”. It’s not about control, but it’s about respect. But I firmly believe the respect goes both ways.
I think a middle approach works best in this instance.
If they give money as a way to manipulate the details of your wedding, you can 1.) refuse to accept and/or 2.) call them out for it. Likewise, you can’t pretend that they didn’t support you & at least hear them out on what advice they may have.
Most of the time, you can appease them by opting to do negotiable things they have mentioned. For instance, they might want to invite a few of their close friends or coworkers (that you don’t know).
Leave some wiggle room & areas for thoughtful dialogue- that’s usually all it takes.
The truth is that while it is YOUR wedding day, you’re often marrying two families.
I’m not saying they should have a firm stake in your wedding plans but you need to recognize that they’re part of it, too. In some ways, the wedding is a reflection of them & often they mean well (even if it comes out wrongly).
Much like parental boundaries are a sign of love, advice is a sign of care & concern. How you handle input is a sign of maturity.
(Caveat: If both of your families are non-supportive in every way or you have little to no relationship then it would be good to not lean in on their advice)