Yes, we know she gave birth to the love of your life but to be perfectly honest, your mother-in-law’s (MIL) antics surely do- at least sometimes- drive you up the wall. Planning your wedding, what with never-ending expenses and countless vendor appointments, can be chaotic enough without her causing drama. When she does, life can be simply too much to handle.
Like it or not, she’s about to be family so you need to learn how to handle the issues that may come up. Here is some advice.
Give her some responsibility:
It’s always nice to involve your MIL in some kind of way. If you know she’s crafty get her to make something, whether it’s wedding favours, a stationery element, a welcome board, etc. If she’s not crafty, think of something you can put her in charge of like placing the name cards on the table or checking that the minister’s on time.
Even if you know your wedding coordinator is already taking care of this, she won’t know and will still feel that she has an important task. Remember, this is a big day for her as too and most of the time she only means well. She also likes telling her friends what her involvement was on the day.
It’s also important to communicate from the start how the planning process is going to work and who is in charge of what. Communication is key at all times! Let your MIL know how you feel before a big explosion happens. Tell her that advice is always welcome, but this is your special day and she must please respect your final decisions.
This is also where a wedding coordinator becomes very handy. Tell your wedding coordinator to relay a message over to your MIL without her knowing the message comes from you.
The money issue:
If your MIL is contributing a large amount of money to your wedding, that does not mean you must stand back and let her take over. This day is 100% about you and your fiancé, and later on in life you want to look back on your photos and still be wowed by the amazing day you had. You don’t want to look back and see your MIL’s style on your best day ever.
To ensure that your wedding is a true reflection of who you and your fiancé are as a couple, you could cut your guest list in half, and have a small and simple wedding for your absolute nearest and dearest, which you can afford to pay for yourselves. Rather do this than have a wedding including things that your MIL wants, yet which you don’t want at all.
Change of plans:
If your mother-in-law goes behind your back to arrange or change plans with a wedding vendor, you need to act quickly to end this. Make sure to inform the vendor that you had no knowledge of the order and it was done behind your back, but that they can cancel the order as it’s not going through. Once again: this is where a wedding coordinator comes in handy!
To prevent this from happening again, let your MIL know that if she sees something or would like something to be at the wedding, she needs to talk to you first. The two of you can then decide together whether it will fit in at your wedding or not.
Unfortunately, there is only so much you can do if people were formally invited to your wedding without your permission. To avoid this situation, make sure you and your fiancé are in charge of sending out the wedding invitations.
If you do find yourself in this predicament it looks worse to uninvite people, so it may be best to inform your wedding coordinator that there are going to be guests who you didn’t know were invited, and they could place these guests at a table right at the back.