12/21 {Ask Liz} Your Wedding Guest List VS. Your FMIL’s Guest List. Go!

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Dear Liz,

Hi! My problem starts with the fact that my future hubs has a lot of guy friends from high school. All of the moms (including his) get together every month to catch up, which is super sweet. Apparently they also throw/host a bridal shower for each bride-to-be of their sons, which is also very kind of them. There are only 3 of these moms that I have met (their sons are the ones my fiance is closest to). There are 9 moms in total. When his mom sent me a rough draft list of their guest list, all of these moms (plus their husbands) are on there. She told me she doesn’t know the etiquette about inviting those who host showers. Neither do I. I’m not a stickler for Southern wedding etiquette, but I don’t want to be rude and just invite some moms and not all. But I don’t want to have to leave them all off because of this. Our guest list doesn’t need to exceed 100 and his side is almost 90!! This is all very frustrating.



Aww, she’s not going to be so tough! (Photo by Ryan Price Photography(

Dear S.O.S.,

Yeah, it’s time to have a conversation with your groom’s mom. My first instinct is to just invite the three moms that you’ve met, or just the mom(s) that threw a shower for you,  but if the others are women that your future MIL runs into all the time AND she put them on the list, then not so much.  So, start with figuring out how many people are coming from your side. Then, talk to you fiance about the situation if you haven’t already, and tell him you’re going to talk to his mom about it.

When you do talk to her, explain it like you did to me – you are trying to keep it under 100 people, her list is 90 people, you have (insert # here) people, are there ( relevant # between 20-40) that she can cut off the list? Emphasize that you don’t know most of her guests, so you can’t really choose without the risk of putting her in an awkward position with someone. If she tries to defer and tell you to choose anyway, insist, politely, that she does it. Give her a firm deadline, no more than a couple of weeks in the future. Thank her profusely and apologize for the hassle. Check in a week before the deadline if you haven’t heard from her.
I know, sounds like fun, right? It really is the easiest way to get it done. I would do it for you if I could. 🙂

So, whaddya think? Are you in the same dillema and/or how are you handling it? let me know in the comments below! And, Happy Holidays!

See you at the end of the aisle,

Liz Coopersmith is the owner of Silver Charm Events, a wedding planning service in Los Angeles. She's also a regular contributor to the Huffington Post and the author of "DIY Your DOC: Do-it Yourself Wedding Day Coordination." Follow her on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.