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How to Handle Unwanted Wedding Opinions

Congratulations, you’re engaged!  It’s time for champagne, Pinterest parties, and… a whole lot of unsolicited opinions.  If the onslaught of wedding advice is driving you crazy, you’re not alone.  These six tips will help you determine whose opinions matter, handle the ones that don’t, and stay sane during your wedding planning adventure.

{Featured Image Photo Courtesy of Kaitie Bryant Photography}

  1. If they’re paying, their opinion matters.

It was so simple back in the day when the Mother of the Bride selected bridesmaids dresses and flowers in shades of peach, the Father of the Bride wrote the checks, and the Bride and Groom smiled whether they liked it or not.  But, the simple days are over and Brides are determined to personalize their weddings and tell their own love story rather than settle for a cookie cutter celebration (hooray for that!)

With most wedding budgets having multiple contributors (usually including some combination of the Bride and Groom and one or both sets of parents), determining who has final say in wedding planning decisions has become more complicated.

Parents who are contributing to the wedding costs are likely going to have plenty of opinions, and you should listen to them.  Listening to their input doesn’t mean you’ll include everything they suggest, but hear them out and make your best attempt at compromise unless you’re willing to fund the wedding solo and endure a family feud.

Your parents are probably going to share some opinions during the wedding planning journey that sound absolutely ludicrous to you.  The truth is, most families need a referee at some point during this process, and your wedding planner is the perfect person for the job!  I’m always happy to be the neutral third party and offer solutions for compromise that are etiquette appropriate and logistically reasonable.

2. If they’re not paying, but they raised you, their opinion matters on some things.

When you’re fed up with the flow of advice and input, it’s easy to go Bridezilla on a parent, whether their request is to attend the menu tasting or help select ceremony music.

But before you launch into the “it’s my wedding and I’m paying so I don’t want your opinions” rant, press pause and breathe for a minute.

A wedding is a celebration of your lifelong commitment to your groom, and in many cases it’s also a joining of two families.  If your parents or future in-laws make suggestions that work with your vision, including a few of them is a kind sentiment and starts your marriage off on a high note, regardless of who is footing the bill.

If a parent is becoming overbearing, set boundaries fast.  Clearly and gently point out where you do want their input, and where you don’t.  A simple “I’d love your help choosing between these three potential invitations, but we’re settled on the menu and flower choices”, will do.

3. Your married friends aren’t the authority on all things wedding. 

Your gal pals can be guilty of overwhelming you with opinions on the “right” and “wrong” way to do wedding planning.  From insisting that save the dates are a waste of money to persuading you that you should choose a garden wedding over a church wedding, it’s possible for them to lead you astray with all the best intentions.

The truth is, every Bride is different and every wedding is different.  You love your friend, but you may not have loved her wedding.  Even if you enjoyed her romantic candlelit garden ceremony, you may be more of the modern art gallery type of Bride, and that’s okay!

Your girls want to help, so prevent advice overload by asking them for specific information.  “I loved the string quartet you used and your caterer was awesome; would you mind sharing their contact info?” gets you the info you need without inviting a wedding planning manifesto.  But, feel free to say “we’re taking a break from wedding planning this week” when they’re driving you crazy with more opinions than you can handle.

4. When it comes to sharing your wedding details, sometimes less is more. 

Whether you like it or not, sharing the details of of your wedding as you decide them invites opinions and feedback from your listening audience. Before announcing to your friends or family that you’ve decided on an outdoor ceremony or a sushi station, know that you may hear some objections along with some approval.  If a negative response is going to bother you, keep the details to yourself and have a private high five with your fiancé about the decision you just checked off your to-do list.

5. If an opinion doesn’t matter, spend the minimum amount of time with it.  

You know what’s great about opinions that don’t matter to you? You really don’t have to do anything about them.  You’re a Bride, not a trial lawyer, so you aren’t obligated to disprove advice that feels wrong to you.  If people you know are spouting off opinions that don’t fall into the “opinions that matter” categories, just let them offer their advice and make a silent choice not to follow it.  No explanation necessary.

6. The best advice you receive is going to come from professionals. 

The advice that helps the most is going to come from your wedding planner and your professional vendor team.  They’re experts in their field; that’s why you’re paying them!  So, lean on them for advice and opinions and call them when you feel stuck. Remember, they can also help you separate the wedding myths you may be hearing from the real must-haves for a memorable and stress free day.

Have more questions about how to handle wedding planning opinions, or want to ask a question to be answered in a future blog post? I would love to hear from you! You can contact me through our website, and check out EEP Events on instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

Until next time, happy planning!

Leah Signature

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