Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Anti-Bridezilla

We are so excited to share our first Feature Writer post! Thanks, Allison!
(If you would like us to share yours, click the link to the right.)

I planned my wedding by myself. I didn't have many friends. My bridesmaids, such as they were, were my mom and two co-workers that I was sort of close to. I wanted to go to Vegas. Hubby and his mother wanted The Traditional Wedding. Even though I was paying for 90% of it myself, I didn't have the balls to stand up for what I wanted. I was effectively the Anti-Bridezilla.

Being corned into the Traditional Bride Role that I had never dreamed or thought about, I studied every etiquette book, read the insipid magazines, glossed over the websites declaring that it would be the most important day of my life, and therefore worth at least $20K. I was 21-almost-22 years old. I did not spend $20K. But I did eat Ramen noodles for an entire year so that every spare penny could go to this singular day.

To pat my own back, I did pretty well etiquette-wise. My only faux paus was that I ordered the wedding invitations without consulting anyone - because nobody wanted to help with anything else, so why would I start asking for help then? - and inadvertently left my future in-law's names off the invite. I didn't even want to put my OWN parents' names on the damn thing, it didn't occur to me how hurt my future mother-in-law would be. I absolved myself of that guilt during the reception when one of her closest friends came up to me, stone sober, and said "what a simple, pretty dress! Why, you can wear it again sometime!" Yes. Really. And suprisingly, that is not my etiquette-related rant of today.

Having taken the time to learn all sorts of crap that I wasn't interested in to begin with, I am deeply bothered when I receive wedding invitations that break every single rule. If I had to handwrite outer - and inner - envelopes for 200 of my mother-in-law's closest friends and relatives, everyone else should to!

That, however, is completely forgiveable in light of the Offense of the "Here's Where We're Registered" Notes. It truly does bother me to receive an invitation and open it to a confetti of those obnoxious little cards.

And finally, Gentle Readers, I am to my real rant: The point of having your wedding is not to receive gifts. The point is to share your committment, love, undying devotion, yadda yadda yadda to your future spouse with your family and friends. The gifts are a perk. As we've all learned from being employed, perks are not entitlements. If I am invited to your wedding and care enough about you to want to show support in the form of a gift other than cash, I ought to be close enough to you to know *someone* who can tell me where you are registered. (The concept of "registering" also bothers me, but that's a topic for another day.)

Perhaps I am not the best voice on this topic, having been fairly anti-wedding. I even refused a bridal shower because I hate attending them, so didn't want people to attend one because of me - and to feel obligated to bring a gift. The in-laws threw one for me against my will. And they all ended up fighting about it. I was wise for my 21 years; they should have listened to me.

The hubs thinks I'm a complete fuddy duddy about this, but it's who I am.

Don't Call Me Kate Either,


Don't Call Us Kate said...

OMG ALLISON! I am with you! I hate bridal/baby/whatever showers of any sort.( it's not that I hate the person it's for, I hate all the crap with it! ) I didn't want one and my Mother in Law made me have one with all of her family and friends. Even spelled my name wrong on the cake. I eloped to avoid all of this sort of stuff! But never really did!

Pinkzombies said...

given i just got married myself 7 months ago, I can compare and give compassion to your experience. For my wedding invitations. I only put my mothers name as through the wedding. She was paying at least 80% of it and I thought that was suiting. The fact that you alone were paying 90% of it would give me the impression that you alone should have been given the credit...not your in-laws. Sorry they made that experience so enjoyable.
I have my own opinions that differ on gifts, but this your blog, not mine. Thanks for a well written blog.
Wedding ones are on my favorite.