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Stress from who else??? Mom of course!!

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
I've been trying to keep calm and to take things a day at a time but things are starting to get out of hand.

We JUST got engaged a little over 2 months ago but we're making great strides already- we have our venue booked, the food, drinks and cake is all included, and we're starting to meet with other key vendors- we're chugging along. At first my mom was OK- she gave her opinion on a few venues and ultimately told us we should book ours. Then she got very finicky.

We must get seat covers. We must have a limo. We absolutely need the bridal suite. When I told her I wasn't very interested in any of that stuff (not saying no- just saying, I don't think so) she freaked out. Who's carrying the rings down the aisle if not a junior bride and ring bearer (Umm... the maid of honor and best man-- no biggie)? What other kinds of photographs are there if they're not posed (candid...)? When I told her I found an officiant who I liked (which by the way, hiring an officiant is so foreign to her) she asked me why I liked them. I told her I saw one of his videos on his website and I liked his style. I liked that he had a personality and that he played the guitar. She freaked out- he plays the guitar? Yes... he can play at the ceremony if we wanted... Well that sounds ridiculous to her. Then she went on to call my wedding "casual" and say that she was shopping for sun dresses to wear to the wedding. Why would she say that?

When I talked about gown shopping with her when I come to visit she said that she would "need to see"- that's her favorite line- "I'll need to see" or "we'll see". Last night I finally told her, there's nothing to see mom, there's no discussion- this is my wedding- my choice. I'd like her opinion but her snarky attitude has go to go. I asked her what about my wedding seemed casual? What makes you think that I'm throwing together some piecemeal of a wedding? She really had no answer and just kept saying that from what I had described to her it sounded casual. I was so angry. I've tried very hard to create an idea of a rustic/romantic wedding without the country vibe. We just decided that we could go either way for our venue and we wanted to keep it a little more on the refined rustic side (even though country would have been sooo fun to do- it's just not us). We even thought we might put a formal dress code on the invite because we wanted it to be a dressier affair but since it's a day event we thought that it wasn't fitting. I'm just super annoyed.

She's said things like "I don't have any other chances- you're the only one" or "I have to show my friends the pictures". It's rude, it's mean, it makes me feel like a child and like she doesn't trust my judgement. It's annoying and it's so hurtful. I want to call my mom and get excited about flowers but I don't want her to suggest that I just go with daisies since I'm having such a casuaaaaaal wedding (she said it just like that). I know at first I tried to shy away from a traditional wedding but you ladies really made me see that it wasn't about something being traditional or not- it's just about what you want and are comfortable with. I happen to hate limo's, big wedding parties, tossing the bouquet and the wedding cake smash (as I call it). But I love that the first time my FH will see me is when I walk down the aisle, I love sleeping in separate quarters the night before, and I love all the first dances and speeches. I want some typical wedding things but just not all. I just wish she would go more with the flow and not automatically think all my ideas are tacky or "casual".

I'll be seeing her this weekend (and trying to keep all wedding chatter until then on hold) and will be showing her a more "complete" picture of what I want for my wedding. But what happens if she hates it and starts being mean again? Do I not discuss the wedding with her? This is really making wedding planning such a drag for me... Sorry for the rant but I need support!!
 

chemgirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Sep 16, 2009
Messages
2,099
My parents sorta took off with what they thought my wedding should be like. They wanted me to get married in their church, have a sit down dinner in their country club, have formal posed pictures, a limo etc.

Rather than argue it, I started referring to that type of wedding as traditional and old fashioned (not that I think there's anything wrong with a more traditional wedding, I just needed some way of changing my parents attitude so they wouldn't see my wedding as something casual and thrown together). I wanted more of a rustic yet elegant vibe and I really wanted them on board. It was in a winery, was an afternoon ceremony with an officiant and then a buffet meal followed by a structured wine tasting and tour of the wine making process (we're engineers, lol). Anyway, at first they were horrified and did refer to it as casual, but I showed them pictures of the venue, swatches of fabric, flower samples and they eventually saw how it would come together into something elegant. Showing them inspiration pictures from bridal magazines helped a lot. My mom now thinks my wedding was "the new thing" and gets excited whenever she sees a winery wedding on tv. My dad even got in to it and drove my mom crazy collecting wild flowers and dried grass from the sides of the highway to make the centerpieces.

I realize I was really lucky, but maybe this approach will help? Your mom probably got married ages ago so she doesn't know about new trends. Maybe if she sees how weddings are now she'll get more excited about it? It can't hurt to show her what photographers can do with candid shots...those special moments always make the best pictures!
 

swingirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 6, 2006
Messages
5,655
Just from a parent's perspective, you have been dreaming/planning your wedding since the day you fell in love with your man. Your mother has probably been planning your wedding since the day she heard, "It's a girl!." I hope you can come to some agreement since no one needs the stress. It sounds like you are more casual and your mother more formal. I planned my own wedding, paid for it, and made my own choices. If you are footing the bill you can make any kind of wedding you want. If you want someone else to pay, they might expect you do things their way.

I will make one suggestion. Even if you don't like the idea of a photographer, the posed photos will look much nicer years from now. Candid shots with a hand held point-and-shot usually don't come out well compared to professional photographs.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
chemgirl|1306861977|2934549 said:
My parents sorta took off with what they thought my wedding should be like. They wanted me to get married in their church, have a sit down dinner in their country club, have formal posed pictures, a limo etc.

Rather than argue it, I started referring to that type of wedding as traditional and old fashioned (not that I think there's anything wrong with a more traditional wedding, I just needed some way of changing my parents attitude so they wouldn't see my wedding as something casual and thrown together). I wanted more of a rustic yet elegant vibe and I really wanted them on board. It was in a winery, was an afternoon ceremony with an officiant and then a buffet meal followed by a structured wine tasting and tour of the wine making process (we're engineers, lol). Anyway, at first they were horrified and did refer to it as casual, but I showed them pictures of the venue, swatches of fabric, flower samples and they eventually saw how it would come together into something elegant. Showing them inspiration pictures from bridal magazines helped a lot. My mom now thinks my wedding was "the new thing" and gets excited whenever she sees a winery wedding on tv. My dad even got in to it and drove my mom crazy collecting wild flowers and dried grass from the sides of the highway to make the centerpieces.

I realize I was really lucky, but maybe this approach will help? Your mom probably got married ages ago so she doesn't know about new trends. Maybe if she sees how weddings are now she'll get more excited about it? It can't hurt to show her what photographers can do with candid shots...those special moments always make the best pictures!
Yes- I think you're spot on. I tried explaining to her that everything she sees as part of a wedding is somewhat outdated but maybe she's seeing my ideas as too radical. I started to pull together inspiration and (don't laugh) I pulled together a PowerPoint I want to show her this weekend. I'm hoping once she sees my inspiration, then she'll be more on board. I'm just worried even after seeing it she won't be...
 

merilenda

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Apr 20, 2010
Messages
816
Can you sit her down and tell her that you appreciate her input, but that it's your wedding and it's hurts your feelings when she makes disparaging comments about what you want?

Also, are you paying for the wedding? My mom and I have a strained relationship, and when I've ever accepted financial help from her in the past, she's used that to try to control me. Once I realized that, I quickly made sure I was completely financially independent from her. I think it's a lot trickier when the parents are paying, because quite honestly, they do deserve a say. That doesn't mean that they should be rude about it, but you know.

FI and I are paying for the wedding ourselves and doing exactly what we want. No one is trying to tell us what to do because no one is contributing financially to it. If you guys are paying, then I would definitely sit her down and explain that it's your wedding and you are going to do what you two want, but welcome her to participate and offer input that's constructive.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
swingirl|1306863157|2934566 said:
Just from a parent's perspective, you have been dreaming/planning your wedding since the day you fell in love with your man. Your mother has probably been planning your wedding since the day she heard, "It's a girl!."
I know- it's why I've been so open to her suggestions. I even started considering seat covers (even though the space is rustic- seat covers takes away from it IMO). I know she's been planning this in her mind too- I just wish she wouldn't put down my ideas and that we could work together...

swingirl|1306863157|2934566 said:
I hope you can come to some agreement since no one needs the stress. It sounds like you are more casual and your mother more formal.
NO!!! I do want a very formal (well, semi-formal- it's a day wedding) event- it's just that in her mind formal means a limo, gloves, and big poofy hair. That's not formal to me- it's old!!

swingirl|1306863157|2934566 said:
I planned my own wedding, paid for it, and made my own choices. If you are footing the bill you can make any kind of wedding you want. If you want someone else to pay, they might expect you do things their way.
The parents have contributed what they wanted/could but the FH and I are putting in the biggest bulk. Ultimately, I'm not putting down her ideas- I'm encouraging them. I want her input, my FMIL's input, my dad's input, even my stepmom's input- I want them to feel like they helped create a special day for all of us- I just dont want to be berated for something I've been working hard to create.

swingirl|1306863157|2934566 said:
I will make one suggestion. Even if you don't like the idea of a photographer, the posed photos will look much nicer years from now. Candid shots with a hand held point-and-shot usually don't come out well compared to professional photographs.
We are planning to have a professional photographer, we just want their style to be photo-journalistic. I don't want to put down what anyone else does but I sincerely dislike overly-posed photos. I don't like being in them nor do I like looking at them after the fact. I want someone to take a million pictures of the day so I can remember the day as it happened- not as a cardboard cut out of what I want to remember in 10 years. I don't mean to be crude, it's just something I feel very strongly about.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
merilenda|1306863527|2934573 said:
Can you sit her down and tell her that you appreciate her input, but that it's your wedding and it's hurts your feelings when she makes disparaging comments about what you want?

Also, are you paying for the wedding? My mom and I have a strained relationship, and when I've ever accepted financial help from her in the past, she's used that to try to control me. Once I realized that, I quickly made sure I was completely financially independent from her. I think it's a lot trickier when the parents are paying, because quite honestly, they do deserve a say. That doesn't mean that they should be rude about it, but you know.

FI and I are paying for the wedding ourselves and doing exactly what we want. No one is trying to tell us what to do because no one is contributing financially to it. If you guys are paying, then I would definitely sit her down and explain that it's your wedding and you are going to do what you two want, but welcome her to participate and offer input that's constructive.
I've already told her that she's stressing me out, not making this fun for me, and just being mean.She says "oh, well". She's not a bad person, she can just be really rude about the dumbest things.

She is actually the last person to share what she's contributing but she says she will be giving us a "gift" to help pay for the wedding. She's not the type of person to hold money over me- as an example- when we got into it yesterday about the photographer I said- Mom, this is what I want and if you're not happy about it, maybe you should hire your own photographer (not my brightest moment but she was frustrating me). She says "Oh, I've already thought about it- I've already said to myself- you might have to hire your own photographer"....... Why???? Just because you want it your way? It's really borderline childish! So she's not the type to hold the money against me- it's a gift and she won't be petty- she'll just go get a limo anyway and have me take it the morning of. She's ridiculous.
 

slg47

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
9,667
ugh, I totally understand the stress. sorry to hear you are dealing with it...

what about getting just a few posed photos? it might ease things on your mom a bit...you don't have to do the whole posed photo thing but maybe one of bride and groom, one of bride and mom?

or you could let her have input on some really /small/ thing? that might make her feel more included/get her off your back a little :)

much **dust** to you!
 

Seattle SC

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jul 27, 2010
Messages
108
Just a small suggestion where I've known someone else that had this same issue -

Possibly ask your mom how much she loved her own wedding. If she says she loved everything about it, tell her that you want the chance to make your own choices that you know you'll love.

If she expresses regrets, let her know that your wedding isn't the time to make up for them because it's your day, not hers.

Won't work with all types of mom's but I do know it sometimes helps them put things in perspective.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
slg47|1306868888|2934630 said:
ugh, I totally understand the stress. sorry to hear you are dealing with it...

what about getting just a few posed photos? it might ease things on your mom a bit...you don't have to do the whole posed photo thing but maybe one of bride and groom, one of bride and mom?

or you could let her have input on some really /small/ thing? that might make her feel more included/get her off your back a little :)

much **dust** to you!
Oh, for sure- I already told her, we'll obviously do a few family photo's right after the ceremony- the FMIL is HUGEEEEE on posed photo's- but nothing will appease her.

And I feel like I have already shown her I can meet her half-way. I originally didn't want a veil and she was very much for it. Then a few weeks ago I told her I was falling in love with the lace trimmed veil's and she was thrilled.... for 30 seconds. She is so hard to please!!

BTW- thanks for the dust and the understanding- ultimately I can handle my mom but she really gets under my skin sometimes and the casual comment went too far for me. Even the FH was upset by that.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
Seattle SC|1306869732|2934640 said:
Just a small suggestion where I've known someone else that had this same issue -

Possibly ask your mom how much she loved her own wedding. If she says she loved everything about it, tell her that you want the chance to make your own choices that you know you'll love.

If she expresses regrets, let her know that your wedding isn't the time to make up for them because it's your day, not hers.

Won't work with all types of mom's but I do know it sometimes helps them put things in perspective.
Thanks!! I'll try that.
 

KittyGolightly

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 11, 2010
Messages
511
The sad fact of the matter is that not everyone will be as excited, supportive, helpful, etc. about your wedding as you might hope. I would not hold out hope that the situation will improve much as the wedding gets closer - in fact, it's likely to get worse as both of you are under more stress.

I found that some people were fantastic to talk to about wedding details, and other people really weren't. Hopefully there is someone else that you can talk to about these things. If I were in your shoes, I would not bother trying to convince your mom that your wedding will be fabulous (unless for some reason, you need her buy-in). Just let her see for herself on the big day.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
KittyGolightly|1306878932|2934759 said:
The sad fact of the matter is that not everyone will be as excited, supportive, helpful, etc. about your wedding as you might hope. I would not hold out hope that the situation will improve much as the wedding gets closer - in fact, it's likely to get worse as both of you are under more stress.

I found that some people were fantastic to talk to about wedding details, and other people really weren't. Hopefully there is someone else that you can talk to about these things. If I were in your shoes, I would not bother trying to convince your mom that your wedding will be fabulous (unless for some reason, you need her buy-in). Just let her see for herself on the big day.
Thanks- this is really the conclusion I've been coming to- I can only try so much before I just give up altogether. And it is sad- I always thought that planning my wedding would be fun with my mom but it's been anything but. Thanks for the honest words- they really mean so much to me!
 

monarch64

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Aug 12, 2005
Messages
17,859
I think your mom is just old-school. She remembers what was popular in her day, or even 10-20 years beyond that, and she has an idea in her mind of what your wedding "should" look like. My advice is to take her to a local (current, well-respected) wedding photographer's studio and look through the sample books with her. She'll get an idea then of what's en vogue now. Show her some wedding magazines. Heck, show her Pricescope wedding threads! If she's concerned about what her circle of friends will think, then she needs to know what's going on now in the wedding industry. Does she watch any of the wedding shows on television? Watch SYTTD with her a few times. Make it a mother/daughter bonding experience. She'll likely come around...she just needs to catch up on the times, imo.

Has she been to any weddings recently? If not, again...she probably still has older styles/traditions stuck in her head. You will just have to sell your ideas to her by getting creative. Do you have an online site of your ideas put together? A storyboard? Show her that kind of thing so she can see for herself what an elegant affair you've begun planning. Be a salesperson: your mom is the client and you need to sell her on the ideas you've been putting together for your dream wedding. You don't have to be patronizing, you can simply show her examples of what your thoughts are. No, she probably doesn't trust you and thinks she knows best because after all, you're her only daughter and she's been dreaming of your day a certain way for longer than you have, perhaps, but you can turn this around and get her in your corner, I am convinced.
 

swingirl

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Apr 6, 2006
Messages
5,655
rhbgirl24|1307041902|2936354 said:
Just remember, through all of this, its YOUR wedding. NOT hers, not his parents, not your best friend's. Just yours and your fiance's. Do what makes YOU happy.
Do what makes you happy and what you can afford.
 

Bleed Burnt Orange

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
Messages
765
You know what...I feel your pain. It's ironic that of all people to stress you out and make you feel like crap about your wedding, it's your mom. Well, ditto my mom. She's already accused me of not wanting to invite any family and therefore, "maybe she just won't go to THAT wedding". She called MY wedding, her daughter's wedding, THAT wedding! She also said she wouldn't want to come to my wedding and be around a bridezilla! :roll:
She has also has insulted my church choice as well. It will be on my fiance's and my university campus, which is a VERY nice church, but she's made her comments.

So, I feel your pain, and I do hope that you are able to have the wedding you'd love, and enjoy it to the best of your ability. Stick to your guns. In the end, and I believe the same may be true with my mom, she'll brag about you and it and enjoy herself!
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
Thanks for all the advice, everyone!!

@monarch - I think you're right. I've got my binder with magazine clippings as well as inspo boards for each part of the wedding (ceremony, cocktail hour, reception) all set to show her tonight, I'm just hoping she keeps an open mind about it. Crossing my fingers!!!!! I don't want to give up on her either!

@swingirl - ABSOLUTELY!! The FH are 100% set on not putting a penny on credit and not exceeding our budget. It's one of our top priorities- we want to get what we want within our means! Great advice!!

@BBOrange - Thanks- it's great to know I'm not alone. I have (successfully) not mentioned the wedding this week and hope to clear up this mess tonight. Either way, I'm going to have patience but draw my line. The best I can do is try and then protect myself afterwards. I don't want to resent my mom because she ruined my wedding planning- thats in my control.
 

blacksand

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2010
Messages
889
Moms have these ideas about their daughters' weddings that have been milling around in their brains for years. It's something they dream about, too. So it takes time to come around to the idea that things aren't going to be the way they've always envisioned them. I think a little patience on our part goes a long way. As others have suggested, try to show her your vision, make her feel like she's there, be be patient if she's not 100% on board with all of your ideas right away. I think most moms do come around eventually! I also try to throw my mom a bone here and there, too. I'll go see the reception hall she likes, check out her favorite florist (actually, I really liked him!), whatever. I'm not going to do everything the way she would, but I'm certainly open to her advice and suggestions, and I think that makes her feel a lot better about the event as a whole.

That said, I'm far more traditional than many of the ladies here on PS in my wedding ideas, it would seem (I still don't get when "traditional" became such a dirty word!), so my mom and I probably don't have as much of a gap to bridge as you may have.
 

gls

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Sep 27, 2009
Messages
222
Im so sorry to hear that you are having stress from your mom. They are the very last person you want to feel isnt supporting you at such an important time.
I've found that my mom has been quite similar to yours, by demanding I do things that I dont want to do, or not being happy when I do something she doesnt like.
If I'm guessing correctly from what you have said, you are an only child. I am too. I think that for my mom (not necessarily assuming your mom is the same) the resistance is not mean-hearted I think she is just trying to come to terms with the fact that her little girl is growing up and is at the age where she is getting married and becoming more independent. I think that its hard for them. So I kind of brush off what my mom says and for things that dont bother me much (hiring wedding cars for instance) I've done because I want her to feel as though she's still needed and appreciated.

Like I said, your mom might have other reasons for what she is doing, but it cant be easy for her either seeing her little girl getting married! Good luck and sometimes its best to nod and smile and dont forget that its ultimately your and your fiancee's day so do what you are comfortable with!
 

JulieN

Super_Ideal_Rock
Premium
Joined
Jul 25, 2005
Messages
13,324
Tell her it's informal (or semiformal,) but one of the happiest days of your life isn't going to be caaaasual.

So sorry for you. :( But... I'm a stickler about not confusing formal, semiformal, informal, and casual dress codes. Casual wedding: groom is not wearing shoes, and his chest hairs are visible from his open-necked collar. Formal: morning dress, royal wedding. Most American weddings are semiformal to informal.

BTW, I don't really think there's anything wrong with a sundress for an outdoor morning wedding where the officiant might play the guitar. I think it'd be cute.
 

confusedaisy

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Jan 4, 2011
Messages
362
Hi Ladies,

Thanks for the kind words and the support! The weekend went ok. I won't say it was a slam dunk but it certainly was an improvement. I gave her my presentation and even though she still didn't seem thrilled, at least she didn't say anything catty. She just kept saying- it's your wedding, its what you want. I then took some of your advice and showed her some more modern photography so she could see what a wedding is like in the 2000's- boy was she shocked!! "Why are there photo's with their head's cut off (bouquet photo's, shoe photos)" or "What's with all the jumping photos?" I also showed her some of the decor and tried to explain that I'm not trying to be different and that a lot of the ideas she thought were "out there" really were very ordinary now-a-days.

But I think the ultimate icing on the cake was having this conversation the next day around her best friend and my aunt. They asked me how the planning was going and, because we are a very honest family, I told them that it was a bit of a challenge to get mom to come around to some of my ideas for the wedding. I was gentle and diplomatic- hoping that we could work the conversation around compromises- but they really took my side. My aunt had just gone to a rustic wedding last year and kept telling me- "I get it- less is more now" and telling my mom- "Mom- things are different now- you need to trust her." They also told me to make sure to compromise and I let them know- I'm more than willing to compromise- nothing is set in stone- I just would like less of the mean comments. Which mean comments??- they asked. When I mentioned the casual comment they were so done with her- they just kept saying: "Oh, you're just being terrible!!". Again- we're an honest family so my mom definitely didn't take it personally, but I think that she's probably going to be a little more open to some of my "outlandish" suggestions (one can only hope...)
 
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