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Can I just say no?

I am being asked to participate in my sister-in-law-to-be's bachelorette party. Her maid of honor has planned the entire night which has a price tag at this point of over $200 for the night plus paying for the bride. I was not invited to participate in the wedding at all so I am a guest at my only sibling's wedding. Is there a way that I can just say no? I don't want to participate and I do not have the funds to pay over $200 in one night. What is a legitimate, polite way to say that I won't be coming?

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lilkimbo lilkimbo 5 years
I agree; you can absolutely say no. If you really want to participate since she is your future family, you could try to find a way to participate in one portion. (Of course, this isn't possible if the party is being held far away, etc., but if, say, they are doing dinner, a show, drinks, etc., etc., you could just go to dinner.)
Deidre Deidre 5 years
You can absolutely say no. Completely agree with Debbie, just be polite and vague (no one's going to press you for specific reasons!). If you want to show a little goodwill (she is your future family, after all), you can always send her a little gift. A cute nightie or 4 pack of mini-cans of Sofia sparkling wine are a lot less expensive, but still very apropos for the occasion.
Debbie5113 Debbie5113 5 years
You are not obligated to participate in anything you don't want to. You can just express your polite regrets that unfortunately you will not be able to attend without offering a specific reason. Or you can say be a bit more vague and say that sadly you won't be available to attend. Or you can be more straightforward and tell them that you can't attend because you just can't afford it right now. Politely saying no is just fine regardless of how many details you prefer to provide.

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