Gransnet forums


AIBU to think they're spending too much?

(137 Posts)
granschemeofthings Wed 25-Jul-18 09:46:19

My son and his fiancee are planning on getting married next year. I understand the pressures these days to have the dream wedding day with all frills but I think it's getting out of hand and I don't know how to warn them without upsetting anyone. Both sets of parents are contributing an amount but the bulk of it is going to be down to the bride and groom. They have decent jobs but I know aren't on massive salaries and in slow-moving industries when it comes to promotions. Was reading this article today on how the average wedding is now over £30k and I'm worried they are heading in that direction. My son's jokingly said they're racking up the debt and credit cards and he'll have to take on weekend jobs. It's all very well, they're in love and I know it's not my place but would you stand by while your son made some fairly life-limiting decisions?

MissAdventure Wed 25-Jul-18 09:48:32

Yes, I think you have no other choice but to leave them to make theirs, as they see fit.
It would be a shame if the wedding day arrived and there was bad feeling already.

MissAdventure Wed 25-Jul-18 09:51:58

P.S, I would probably end up saying something though..

Googoogoo1 Wed 25-Jul-18 09:59:59

Really difficult, I think our generation were perhaps more frugal than the younger generation. If you are contributing what you planned then it's up to them if they want to put it on cards. I too would find it hard but suggest saying nothing as they could resent it. If they come back later asking for financial help, try to have a diplomatic answer at hand. These discussions easily lead to misunderstanding, which can go downhill from then on.

Alima Wed 25-Jul-18 10:04:33

No, I do not think you are being unreasonable at all to THINK that granschemeofthings! Whether or not you should voice your misgivings or not is another thing altogether.

paddyann Wed 25-Jul-18 10:13:31

maybe do some research and show them that the things they want can be bought for much less than they think.I was at a beautiful wedding recently ,they certainly didn't do without anything and I was told the cost of the whole thing came in under 10K.It is possible especially if you have friend s who can provide services like photography or who can make the cake as a gift

Grannyknot Wed 25-Jul-18 10:21:16

I honestly do not understand the massive wedding thing at all.

I was listening to a young family member talking the other day about wanting a "Destination Wedding" and in the next breath saying that they can't afford the deposit to buy their own house. hmm

I have to bite my tongue. I'm not saying don't have a "dream wedding" but there's "dream" and there's "nightmare!" grin

PECS Wed 25-Jul-18 10:31:14

Soo hard! DD1 & hubby had a home and baby first..then a fairly DIY wedding day which was magical. DD2 refused to get married.
But when you see the debt mounting up it is hard to keep quiet..but if you speak you may jeopardise realtionships. I am not sure what I would do

sorry I am no help at all!

Gone are the days of father of the bride controlling the budget!

Teetime Wed 25-Jul-18 10:33:14

I suppose its their money and their debt and you could advice but it would probably fall on deaf ears.

PamelaJ1 Wed 25-Jul-18 10:41:34

Where angels fear to tread comes to mind. I doubt if they would thank you for your extremely good advice.
Not yet anyway, maybe down the line they would see the wisdom of your words but by then they may not be speaking to you!

glammanana Wed 25-Jul-18 10:42:51

I have seen both sides of the equasion with my two boys and their fiancee's.
The eldest got married in LV and it entailed the cost of flights and hotel stays for all who attended (12) then another celebration for all those who didn't attend they held a coming home party for about 100 family and friends it cost us over 7.5k just for myself hubby & DD to go which included a lump sum towards their honeymoon,
they funded their own costs to the tune of £12k.
My second son paid for a package at a very nice Hotel in Liverpool for the whole day including ceremony/sit down reception and evening buffet and got the whole deal for less than £5k .
Both enjoyed their days and so did we but I know what I would have preferred for DS1 as he has only just finished paying off his CCs for the cost.

Grandma70s Wed 25-Jul-18 11:16:13

My son and DIL did similar. I think he knew what I thought, because my dislike of big weddings is well-known in my circles.

What annoyed me is that I had given them some money as a wedding present and I hate to think it was spent on the wedding, as opposed to ....something more sensible 😀, but I suspect it was. I didn’t say anything, at least not much. What can you do?

M0nica Wed 25-Jul-18 11:27:36

A significant number of marriages fail after the BIG wedding as a result of the pressure of the overhanging bills.

I would say something, but think carefully before you say it.

We went to a wedding a fortnight ago. It did not cost anything like £30,000. The couple were slightly older than average. They bought the house first, Then had a traditional wedding. Church service and reception in the adjoining church hall, There was a sit down reception for 90, a salad followed by a cold dessert. The bride wore a simple long dress in a pale colour from a High Street chain and flowers in her hair. It was a lovely happy family event and surely that is what a wedding ought to be.

I am suspicious of this £30,000 average, I think the source is usually a self-selected survey by a bridal magazine, which those spending a lot reply to and those spending a lot less do not.

JackyB Wed 25-Jul-18 11:29:35

LV? Latvia?

FarNorth Wed 25-Jul-18 11:36:26

If my DS was doing this, and he gave me an opportunity by commenting about his bills, I'd ask if the wedding needed to be quite so expensive.
If my comment wasn't well received, tho, I'd shut up about it after that.

It might be his fiancée who wants a big, expensive wedding and DS is going along with it.
If so, I don't think you'd get very far with any comments.

FarNorth Wed 25-Jul-18 11:37:04

LV = Las Vegas, I'd guess.

rubytut Wed 25-Jul-18 11:44:27

They know how much they are spending so do not need it pointing out to them. Personally I think it is a waste of money for one day but it is not my wedding.

Grandad1943 Wed 25-Jul-18 12:34:55

I cannot stand weddings and I did not even enjoy my own. However I am still married to that wonderful girl fifty years later.

Our wedding cost two hundred and twenty pounds in 1968 and that was a white wedding in a church. However, I would not know how much the equivalent cost of that would be today.

Surely marriage is thinking about the rest of both those peoples lives, not about one day. hmm

Grandma70s Wed 25-Jul-18 12:35:40

My son and DIL already had a house, and strictly speaking they could afford the wedding, but I still think it’s a massive waste of money that could be better spent.

They have been happily married for ten years now, with two gorgeous children.

jenpax Wed 25-Jul-18 12:39:44

I wouldn’t say anything. It’s their money and their wedding. Everyone has their own spending priorities and this is clearly theirs.

FlexibleFriend Wed 25-Jul-18 12:53:44

My son is getting married next year and their wedding is costing around 12 grand which is more than enough. We had the discussion ages ago that it's the marriage that's important and the wedding is just the trimmings so to speak. We've talked about the best ways to keep the costs down and they're saving for it rather than doing it on credit. They know what they're doing and what they can afford they're grown adults with good jobs but like me not too bothered by what others think. Also my son has already seen a few of his friends marriages end in divorce.

granschemeofthings Wed 25-Jul-18 12:56:36

Thanks for the responses. I think it's his fiancee who is pushing for the more extravagant details but my son's certainly not asking her to rein it in either. I don't want them not to have a wonderful day - I just worry that they'll come to regret this and might get themselves into trouble as a result. And troubled finances put such a strain on marriages. I want them to be happy.

muffinthemoo Wed 25-Jul-18 12:57:47

I wanted a very small affair or perhaps a short trip away.

Mum and MIL behaved so catastrophically poorly, and DH in response tightened the thumbscrews on me so badly, that we ended up with a 35 grand bill (neither set of parents contributed a brown penny) and I had a major depressive episode and was off work for months before hand.

I’d say it was a lovely day, but the harridans did their best to wreck it and I remember very little anyway, being heavily medicated to get through the day.

DH got what he wanted though, which was to suck up to his mummy. I mean, we have to focus on what’s really important, right?

(yes. I remain sore at heart about this. It was a fantastic amount of money and I was terribly unwell and treated abysmally by those who were supposed to care about me. If not for my little ones, I wish I had walked away from the whole thing and started my life over.)

sodapop Wed 25-Jul-18 13:03:54

Depends on how good your relationship with them is. I think I would have to sound a warning note in this case. It all seems to be getting competitive, the whole wedding,hen and stag weekends, getting married abroad etc. The emphasis seems to be the wedding and not the marriage. I mean in general terms not your son jools

harrigran Wed 25-Jul-18 13:04:35

DS and DIL had a very lavish wedding, we were not asked to contribute and I never asked about the cost but I suspect it would have amounted to a deposit for a house. Thankfully they had already bought a house.
I was married in the 60s and the reception cost £72 grin