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Old 07-23-2007, 02:31 PM   #2
kaplods
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Wausau, WI
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Yikes! My husband and I had only a tiny concern overy our family at our wedding (and it was bad enough). His parents' divorce had not been a friendly one, and he was concerned that they would not behave at the wedding. He sat down with each of them and told them what behavior he expected of them at the wedding, and if they couldn't follow through he didn't want them there. They both agreed, promised to be nice, and were.

Your situation is much tougher. If there's real animosity between the families, even if everyone does agree to behave (and even manages to in the end), planning a big wedding is going to be SOOOO stressful for you, as you spend months - and the big day - worrying about what people might do.

My advice is to plan a wedding that you can enjoy - both the planning of and the actual event, even if that means a smaller wedding. One suggestion might be a smaller, shorter reception. If you think alcohol might contribute to tensions, don't serve any or serve champagne at the table, not an open bar. If you think everyone can behave for a short period of time, but not all day, you might choose an early morning wedding with a champagne (or not) breakfast reception.

A friend in a similar circumstance handled it by choosing a destination wedding on the beach in Florida. All of the family and friends were invited, but there wasn't a full reception, just cake and champagne in the hotel after the ceremony. Not many people attended, but they could at least say it was because of the expense of travel, not because they hated the other family. Both sets of parents and grandparents attended (and had been given a similar lecture to the one my husband gave his parents - behave or don't come).
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