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[Nov. 16th, 2012|06:45 am]
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I'm getting married early next year, and plan to have a small, mostly family-only wedding. My best friend, who is invited to the ceremony, wants to throw me a bachelorette party and invite a couple of my acquaintances, who aren't.

Is it inappropriate to invite these people to a bachelorette party if they aren't invited to the actual wedding?


ETA: My god, getting married brings up a lot of invite/do not invite etiquette questions. This came up after I posted earlier today. I've been engaged for less than a month and my mom wants to throw a family engagement party for us on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. She wants to invite both of my fiance's parents. However, they're literally in the middle of a very unfriendly divorce. The engagement party isn't going to be a lot of people or at a large place so it's not like the two of them could reasonably avoid each other.

Whether or not his mom brings her new girlfriend (a very sore subject with her ex-husband) it would be extremely awkward to have both of them there. My fiance's opinion is basically "whatever" because he's tired of his parents acting like children about each other, but I really don't think it would be a good idea to have them both there.

Should we invite his mother because we'll have spent Thanksgiving with his father just a couple days beforehand? Or should we invite his father because my fiance has a SLIGHTLY better relationship with him? Neither? Both, because they're grown-ups and should be able to handle this shit?
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: cindyanne1
2012-11-16 11:49 am (UTC)

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I think so. The bachelorette party is about celebrating the end of your single-hood(dom?) and I think it's very appropriate to go out and share that with friends and then have your wedding with family.
[User Picture]From: kennapea
2012-11-16 12:00 pm (UTC)

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it's your wedding, do what you like! seriously. go out and have a good time with the girls and then share your big moment with family. it's not a big deal.
[User Picture]From: 67words
2012-11-16 12:16 pm (UTC)

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i don't think it's inappropriate. if you were having a big wedding with lots of friends, it would be tacky.
[User Picture]From: bottledjayme
2012-11-16 12:23 pm (UTC)

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I asked a lot of people about this and the general consensus was that if you are having a low key wedding, you invite the people to your bachelorette party, who you would have liked to invite to the wedding, had you had a bigger budget, or whatever - It's your way of celebrating with them, even though they won't be at the wedding.
[User Picture]From: wristtattoos
2012-11-16 01:15 pm (UTC)

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If you're happy with it, I'm sure its appropriate. If you aren't very close, they shouldn't expect to be invited.
[User Picture]From: kerbear85
2012-11-16 02:02 pm (UTC)

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I've been invited to a bachelorette party and wasn't invited to the wedding
[User Picture]From: hearts_of_hope
2012-11-16 02:13 pm (UTC)

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I think you have to invite both parents or else you risk someone feeling very hurt about not getting invited. It is possible that one or both of them won't show up to avoid the other one.
Or just don't have an engagement party if you are seeing your family at Thanksgiving anyway?
[User Picture]From: hikerpoet
2012-11-16 02:34 pm (UTC)

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I think in this case it is just best to be up front with all parties.

For the bachelorette thing, it would be in bad taste if you were inviting 75 people and they just barely missed the cut. But it is a super intimate family thing (and yes, your best friend counts as family!) it is sort of another story. But let them know that is the case, and I'd still keep it slightly more casual. For instance, for most bachelorette parties, the group treats the bride. If you only have a couple of beers, this is still appropriate. If you do end up making a bigger night of it and seeing a show or involving spas or whatever else, I would put less of a burden on them (not that you were gonna anyway!)

Invite both parents, but stress the other is invited too and stress that you won't feel insulted if they feel like they need to bow out because you get along well enough with both of them and understand the unusual situation. There are situations with divorced parents where they can't even get along twenty-five years later and it is still causing immediate major drama, but if the divorce is actually happening NOW it is a bit more understandable.
[User Picture]From: thirdsouza
2012-11-16 02:43 pm (UTC)

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I would say invite them to the bachelorette party. It's already been said here and it rings true that this gives them an opportunity to celebrate with you where they won't be able to at the wedding.

As far as your future in-laws, I assume they're both going to be invited to the wedding, so I would suggest inviting both to the engagement party. I would also suggest letting both of them know that the other will be there, and possibly asking both of them not to bring a date if you think it will cause a scene.
[User Picture]From: anthylorrel
2012-11-16 03:01 pm (UTC)

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I don't know about the bachelorette party, but both parents should be invited because they should be able to act like adults and not cause drama at a wedding. I would let them know in advance that if either starts drama that they will be removed.
[User Picture]From: amles80
2012-11-16 03:16 pm (UTC)

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Is it inappropriate to invite these people to a bachelorette party if they aren't invited to the actual wedding?
No. As far as I'm aware, that's pretty normal!

About that second question, more complicated!

I understand about your mother wanting to have a party to celebrate, but if a party is meant to be a fun thing for everybody to enjoy, then I'd say it's not such a good idea to bring both of your fiancé's parents together. That's what I would feel. (I suppose all of them are coming to the actual wedding, and that they can behave well around each other that time, but that's not the same, is it?)

If I were your mother, I would invite your fiancé's parents on two separate occasions. Like, have two smaller parties. Or, like you say, spend Thanksgiving with the father and invite the mother to the party. I guess it could be like Thanksgiving/engagement party! I assume the point of it all would be for all future the in-laws to get to know each other. It would probably be better for everyone involved if there was not a lot of tension. You're not getting married to your fiance's parents after all, and neither are your parents! ;) You'll just have to get along! It's true that one would think that the parents should "be able to handle this shit", like you say... but it's their problem and not your (family's) job to deal with it. It's not uncommon that divorces get ugly, after all, and it might take time. Hopefully they're acting better at the time for the wedding.
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[User Picture]From: mel_darcy
2012-11-18 09:05 am (UTC)

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I've been to my managers hens, and was not invited to the wedding.
My brother and now sis-in-law had a small wedding that they paid for themselves, so they were determined to only invite who they wanted.