Pinings — Advice by Sherry Hughes

The Sad Bride

Dear Pinings,

I am getting married in eight months. So far, my mother has insisted on making most of the decisions about the wedding. Fred (my fiancťe) isnít very picky and I have certain things that I really want to do, but it just doesnít matter ó she insists on having the last word on everything. She even came over one day with a bagful of party favors that she bought. I hadnít even seen them!

Because she and my stepfather are paying for everything, they feel that they get a say in how everything is done. I say itís my wedding, and even though we might need to compromise on some things, itís my day and I should get to have what I want. We are having some major battles and Iím afraid itís going to get worse.

What can I do?

Sad Bride

Dear Sad Bride,

Iím sorry you are sad. Iím also sorry you arenít getting what you deserve and what every bride deserves: the wedding of their dreams. Money aside, it sounds like your views arenít being heard at all. Weddings are a family celebration so often the family works together to make the plans (read: the parents and the couple getting married.)

Iím sure youíve had a couple of conversations (fights) at this point. Those can really put a damper on the fun.

Are you sure you donít want to elope at this point? Sit down with your fiancťe and talk to him about two ideas: either paring the wedding down to a size that you can afford to pay for yourselves or eloping. Your relationship with your parents is important and this stuff can be a deal-breaker. A small wedding at city hall ó or in a friendís back yard followed by a  picnic or barbecue ó is just as effective as 250 people in a ballroom. Itís the marriage thatís important, not the wedding.

The other thing you might do is sit down with your parents and write a list of all the things left to do. Divide the list in half and give them half of the list of things to do. Agree that whatever they do is fine with you and that they wonít make a peep about things you decide on. Set a budget and stick to it. This plan will mean a lot of compromise (and tongue-biting) on your part, but it will at least separate you and your mom when it comes to making plans and thus cut down on the fighting.

Good luck.

Sherry Hughes welcomes letters from readers. Reach her at

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