To add one, or not to add one? That’s really an old question. I’ve seen friendships end, brides leave parties, and parties devolve into chaos because of open plus-size arguments. To be clear, I have been on both sides. I got involved in February of this year and spent the first two months fielding questions about the size of the guest list, plus others, the wedding party—of course if people were involved, I didn’t feel comfortable giving a solid answer. In fact, the words I have spoken over the years questioning my friend’s choice in marriage still haunt me to this day. It wasn’t until recently, when they were both planning my own wedding and the wedding of a close friend that I understand that bringing a stranger to your friend’s wedding is not only awkward for the couple, it will end up making you uncomfortable. In short: Don’t do it – here’s why:
Why you shouldn’t bring a guest to a wedding
Yes, a wedding is a party–but it’s an intimate affair
A wedding should be a dream-worthy celebration, where the couple is happy and bright and the company is good for their important time. But, if these ceremonies are really only about the couple getting married, the wedding industry will not exist. Weddings are gatherings where the guests tend to care more than the couple themselves. This is really normal, and I have heard many guests take it upon themselves to complain about everything from the decor to the parking situation as if it was a couple who caused the purpose to they are not good. The wedding industry makes the impression that the guests are very important on the day as the family joins – this is not true.
I promise you that the couple wants you to have fun. My fiancé and I have had many conversations about selecting vendors and customizing experiences for our sponsored guests over the years. The point is that the couple is inviting you, not someone they have never met. They’ve no doubt spent hours of stress narrowing down a guest list that doesn’t include your new Bumble date or your college buddy. Invited guests gather to watch one of the most important and intimate moments of two people’s lives, and inviting a complete stranger into that dynamic will cause a small awkward conversation or avoid it completely when you finally get a chance to congratulate the happy couple.
Of course, it makes sense to want to bring someone along. I’ve been in this situation many times, from weddings to corporate events – you name it. I often sit in the corner drinking crappy drinks or use my clothes to chat while trying to talk to strangers. Going alone isn’t always fun, and weddings are no exception. What I try to remind myself, however, is that there is a reason (people, loved ones, work) that I choose to be there. If this event sounds awful and I can’t bring myself to go alone, I’m not doing it.
The guest list is already confusing enough
Let’s break down the scary guest list even further. For me, putting together a playlist has proven to be one of the most difficult wedding planning tasks. I hate the idea of detailing the people I care about, but with event restrictions, venue specifications, and budgets, there must be limits.
First, you have to answer questions about family: Parents, siblings, uncles, aunts, step-relationships, grandparents, you know. We are both lucky enough to have families who earn a small portion, but for most of my friends that is not the case. In most duos, family makes up the majority of the guest list even if you don’t want them. Family friends are coming. This often results in a very mixed crowd that you hear stories about but can’t place. You know you’re friends on Facebook, but that’s about it. Then it’s time to think about friends. Between your friends, your mutual friends, and your friends, that’s probably the rest of your list (and you haven’t even started thinking about your significant other). For example, we have decided to invite other couples who are in long-term relationships. This includes engagements, marriages, live-in partners, and life partners in general.
For those who have not planned or been a part of planning a wedding, it is easy to feel if you are not given the option of extras. What you have to remember is that it may not be possible for many reasons. It can get worse if you spend a lot of time with your significant other but not long enough to meet the couple’s terms. I’ve seen this happen a few times, and it’s scary. What one person thinks is stable may not kill another, and this is where feelings can upset him. Think “So they don’t think my relationship is bad?” make a change. Yikes. In this case, it may be helpful to talk to someone who knows the couple (or the couple themselves if you are close) about why they made the decisions they did. have. This can help eliminate any ideas before they get out of hand or fake relationships.
They are not just pictures, they are memories
Wedding photography and videography have been a large part of the industry for decades, but with the rise of social media, this area of planning has completely exploded. We all know couples who look for any excuse to plaster wedding photos all over their social media accounts, and those who allocate large sums of their budget to make sure their beauty looks good. As I look back on these events, watching friends and family tearfully turn to their albums has completely changed my tone.
The truth is that wedding photos and videos are very important because they are memories. These types of media capture moments that can be recreated and live on for generations to come. Now imagine a stranger lurking around their fancy dress show or standing next to their parents at the reception—how awful would that be for a husband? and the wife? I completely understand the desire to wear sexy photo-ops with your new partner, but save on your next night out on the town… not your friend’s wedding in the air.
Everyone knows that weddings are expensive. Very expensive indeed, according to that Zola, The estimated cost of a wedding in 2023 is a whopping $29,000 (and that doesn’t even include state breakdowns). Of course, a wonderful wedding can be done at any price point, but it goes to show how much planning and investment is necessary to host an event of this size.
Everyone who attends the ceremony and reception is a bonus, so you might think that adding one person to your table is as easy as pulling up a chair, it’s not. Sellers will charge for additional and unexpected visitors, and the rules here will be strict. If the wedding goes beyond the right and space, the debt can be the burden of the couple or include the protection of everyone in the event.
Not Very Good
As someone who is in the middle of wedding planning right now, I want each of our invited guests to feel like they are a special addition to the wedding day because they are. If you are invited to a wedding and you are alone, the couple may think that you will know the other guests. If you’ve been given an extra and had that dreaded break-up conversation a few weeks ago, avoid inviting your new hinge game to step into your ex-partner’s shoes.
There are exceptions to every rule, but if you think it’s important to share your feelings with the couple, that’s up to you. But remember that these people care about you. They want you to celebrate their special day with them or you won’t be invited. If you think a lot in the arms about them and do not want two-day-Brad testifies that they are the fastest, maybe it is time to examine you in terms of subject.