Sunday, July 23, 2006

Q+A WITH THE WEDDING FAIRY (PART IV)

Here's a question from a reader about weddings/significant others, and a "where are they now" type of question:

"I scrolled through the archives to see whats been going on and the stories that caught my attention the most were on inviting guests and your friend not inviting TallGuy to her wedding. I know that wedding has past, so do you still keep in contact with her? You know when you get married you should just put her name on the invitation and leave her husband out, that would be hilarious. I really don't know what your friend was thinking leaving TallGuy out. It really didn't save them alot of money to do that, I know cause I'm getting married in 7 weeks! I am proud to say that every "single" (pun intended here) person invited to the wedding has an "and guest" on their invitation wether they are dating some one or not. They all have an opportunity to bring a person along. In this day in age, who said "and guest" had to be a date of the opposite sex? My childhood friend isn't dating any one, so she wants to bring her sister with her to the wedding, I said absolutely- it is your guest, and you can bring whoever you want. I must admit I have come across some inviting issues, and I hoped I handled them well."

This question came from a reader in early April. I was "saving" it, as I was curious myself as to what would happen--and whether Heather (see my prior posts from the "December" archive if you don't know the story) ever attempted to contact me or reconcile after her (in my opinion) inappropriate and rather classless behavior.

To be sure, I attended the wedding, as I said I would. I was there alone, and actually never even SAW HER. Could I have been the bigger person, walked up to her at her wedding, and congratulated her? Sure. Was I completely put off that she made absolutely no effort to stop at my table and say hello--particularly as I was alone at the wedding and knew hardly no one-and not a single soul at my table? Absolutely. After that, I felt as if the friendship was pretty much over. With Heather not contacting me thereafter, I figured correctly. So, to answer this reader's question, Heather and I no longer speak-- this is the first wedding casualty I've had since I've started seeing my friends become engaged and married.

This topic about inviting significant others engendered much debate among readers--and I think some thought I was overly critical about TallGuy not being invited--despite the fact that we pushed our trip back to the Greek Islands and lost our hotel reservations in order to be there.
I think it's interesting what this reader notes--that the cost isn't really that big of an issue with one additional person. I'm sure others would disagree. However, I would like to point out that with regard to this subject - as I said in December - it's not as much THAT she did it, but HOW she did it. Act graciously, is what I would say. Heather was neither gracious nor classy about her decision, and I think she knew it.

What I hope readers take out of this post about my long-lost friendship is that every detail of a wedding is important, but not as important as the friends and family that you surround yourself with. Heather forgot some of that as she attempted to plan, and was STILL forgetting while in the midst of celebration.

If you act in the same way that you wish others would, you'll be fine. Just keep that in mind as you go along, and you'll be happy you did.

Stay tuned!

4 comments:

Twistie said...

Amen.

I've been to weddings that clearly cost tens of thousands of dollars held in fancy hotels. I've been to weddings held in someone's backyard or living room in a rush on a couple hundred dollars. I've been to everything in between. How nice I think the wedding was depends entirely on two things: whether the celebration reflected the bride and groom's personalities, and whether the comfort of the guests was taken into consideration.

Whether you hold a huge blowout or an intimate backyard barbeque with wedding vows as entertainment, one of the most important things you have to do is be thoughtful of the people you invite. Try to make sure there's enough food and drink to go around, enough bathroom facilities, and enough shade if your wedding reception is held outdoors.

More importantly, do your best to at least say hello to everyone, and do it sincerely. Years from now, people will be able to laugh about the skimpy buffet spread or how sunburned Aunt Martha was at the end of the day. They won't forget being snubbed by the bride and/or the groom. Trust me, friendships have ended over this.

J said...

So true. I'm the first of my high school and college friends to get married, and not only is everyone getting an "and guest" but I'm trying to keep the list small enough to make meaningful conversation with all guests possible. When you attend a wedding and you're one of a list of hundreds and hundreds, it just gets so impersonal and ridiculous. Good advice!

Anonymous said...

Um. Just to add another perspective, although I tried very hard to say hello to everyone at my wedding, there were many people whom I would not have talked to had they not come up and talked to me first... a wedding is extraordinarily hectic, plus which there are *lots* of people I had to talk to. Including some that I would rather perhaps not have talked to, but whom I had to if I did not want to be dead (by my mom's hand) at the end of the day. We did try to go around to tables, but the best man was prompted by some of the parents with small children to start toasts before we were halfway through.

On the other hand, if I had previously had a similar disagreement with you (which I wouldn't have, as everyone had the opportunity to bring a guest), I'd probably be rather more motivated to make sure I talked to you. So I do see where you're coming from, too.

Anonymous said...

" I really don't know what your friend was thinking leaving TallGuy out. It really didn't save them alot of money to do that, I know cause I'm getting married in 7 weeks! I am proud to say that every "single" (pun intended here) person invited to the wedding has an "and guest" on their invitation wether they are dating some one or not. "

Perhapes inviting one more person would not add that much expense. However, putting "and guest" on every invitation would add a lot of money. If I put "and guest" on the invitations of my guests who I know are not seeing anyone, then it would add several thousand dollars to my wedding. The wedding is already costing quite a bit, even though I am doing a lot of the work myself to save money(making my own dress, doing the floral arrangements, making the favors, etc). If I put "and guest" on all of the invitations then I would have to cut down my guest list and would not be able to invite some of the people I know and care for and would like to celebrate my wedding with me. I am inviting dates for those people who are in relationships, but saying that it is rude not to put "and guest" on the invitations of those who aren't seems unreasonable. It is a huge cost difference(well how huge depends on how many single guests you have I guess).