Dear Bridal Becky,
I need your help quick! I am getting married in three weeks. My parents and I have paid for the entire wedding. I know that the bride’s family, traditionally pays for the majority of the wedding expenses. The problem is my parents feel that the groom’s parents should pay for the rehearsal dinner. My future mother-in- law wants to invite all the out of town guests she has invited to the rehearsal dinner. Becky, there is over 30. My future in-laws have complained about paying for the dinner for weeks now. They are ruining the most important event in their son’s life as well as mine. I don’t know what to do. When I tried to speak to them about this issue, they were mean and nasty, making rude remarks about how my parents should pay for the rehearsal dinner. My finance and I are miserable and now think that we should just elope. What should we do?
Calm down and take a few deep breathes. Every wedding has its drama. The rehearsal dinner is not a mandatory part of the wedding planning. The function of this event was simply to gather the members of the bridal party and immediate family members after the wedding rehearsal at the church. It is during this time that the bride and groom thank all the people in attendance for helping them over the last year, with the preparations for the wedding. You may even give your attendants their gifts at this time.
Traditionally, this dinner was hosted by the groom’s parents at a restaurant or family members home. Today, anyone can host this dinner, even the bride and groom themselves. The guest list for the rehearsal dinner can vary greatly, depending on the couple, their families wishes and finances. It is customary that the couples immediate family and their spouses be invited. Next, the entire bridal party, including spouses should attend. Don’t forget to invite the officiate and his wife or significant other. Now for the sticky part…. some parents feel that ALL out of town guests should be invited to the rehearsal dinner. In your case, all 30 of them will depend on your finances. My advice to you is to limit the number of out of town guests, maybe by how far they traveled or by special personal significance.
Lastly, let me stress, there is no need to break the bank with a rehearsal dinner.
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