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You Asked: She Invited Her Family to My Wedding!

Dear Sugar,

My fiancé and I are pulling together our wedding on our own with no help from a wedding planner and minimal financial help from our families. We are trying to keep our guest list reasonable so that we can stick to our budget. This has proven to be difficult since we both have large extended families, so we've had to pick and choose who we're inviting. So imagine my surprise when my fiancé's brother's wife called me to insist that her parents (who I've never met) be invited to the wedding to care for her 2-year-old child. It would be one thing if she was a direct family member, but they are a few degrees removed. To add insult to injury, my fiancé's brother's wife is already bringing a nanny, which makes her request even more outlandish.

When she first asked me about this, she did ask, however as I told her about our budgeting concerns, she became increasingly adamant, and ending up basically instructing me to invite them. Since we are paying for 90 percent of this wedding, I feel like I should be able to just say no, but I don't want to start off my marriage on the wrong foot, this is part of his family after all. I'm really told but most of all astounded by her query. Do you have any advice?
— Broke Bride Brooke

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Dear Broke Bride Brooke,

First and foremost, I must commend you and your fiancé for planning and hosting your wedding alone, I know that's not an easy task. Since you're sticking to a pretty tight budget here, I completely understand how you'd feel taken aback by this woman's request. Like you, I'd think having a nanny there to help care for her child would be more than enough, so something tells me there's more to her wanting her parents there. The etiquette for inviting quests is all very circumstantial, but at the end of the day, it's your wedding, not hers, so the choice is ultimately up to you and your fiancé.

Of course, starting off your marriage on the right foot is important, as is not burning any bridges, but it's even more important to not go into debt all because of one night — remember, it's about the marriage, not the wedding. So with that said, I'd talk it over with your fiancé, tell him how you feel and if you both see eye to eye, I advise you to say no to her. Now if your fiancé feels that it's important to have them there, unfortunately you're going to have to extend the invite — while this is your special day, it's his, too. I think we can agree that this was a pretty presumptuous request, but you should not, by any means, feel badly for saying no if that's the decision you make. I hope I was of some help, and good luck.

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