Did I commit a faux pas?


My first cousin’s son is getting married. When discussing the upcoming wedding with the groom’s mother by phone, she assured me that my kids would be invited also. (They’re 23, 19 & 17 years old.) When the invitation arrived, it was addressed to only me and my husband. It was an odd type of invitation, with no reply card–we’re supposed to RSVP on a wedding website. An e-mail address was given for the groom. (They live in another state, but the wedding will be here in our area.) So I e-mailed the groom to ask if my kids were included in the invitation. He wrote back to say that if they wanted to come they could. Now I feel kind of guilty for putting him on the spot like that. I don’t want to impose three extra people on the guest list, but, on the other hand, the groom doesn’t have very many relatives left in this area, and I would really like it if my kids could meet relatives on my side of the family. They’ve grown up virtually not knowing that there is another side to their family. So, did I make a social blunder?


**I don’t think you made a blunder. The blunder would have been if you just assumed your children were invited (without anyone in the family telling you that) and brought them anyway. Lots of people do that as we discovered at my sister’s wedding recently:rolleyes:.

If you are really concerned it couldn’t hurt to email back and let them know you are sorry if you put them on the spot and if adding 3 extras to the list would be a problem to let you know.

I don’t know how it works in your family but in mine all of the men are clueless about this kind of thing. The groom may have said yes without considering things like extra cost and seating… IF that was the case he could be in some trouble right now with the women of the family, lol. Giving him a way out would be very kind of you:)**


You were just being you. He would have figured out who you were eventually. Weddings are all about family. can you ask if I can go?


Not a real social blunder, if the bride / groom had wanted to be really specific, they should have sent out individual invitations. Otherwise these sort of scenarios are bound to occur.

You could always give the groom a side gift to cover the food expenses for 3 extra people ($150?) if you felt he really hadn’t wanted to invite them for cost reasons.


Nope… you just clarified the invite…


I agree that assuming they were included would have been a faux pas. Asking up front was the mature, adult, responsible way to handle it! You did just fine. If more people would just ask the questions straight out and get clear answers from one another, families would be a lot more peaceful… :thumbsup:


You just clarified. You did fine. Enjoy the wedding.


Speaking as a bride-to-be currently planning a wedding, if it was addressed to you and your husband, then 2 people, you and your husband were invited.
If they wanted to invite the kids they would have sent them separate ones or wrote"and Family". The groom was probably put on the spot when you called and asked and did not want to be “mean” by saying no. We’ve already had a person call my fiance’s mom (her cousin or something) and ask if she could come. FI’s mom said yes because she felt bad, and then told us about it. Also, his sister who is still living at home asked if she could bring her friend, and of course I was caught off guard and said “i guess”. It’s kind of annoying to get a +3, especially if it’s not in your budget. I apologize if I sound mean, but i’m just trying to be truthful. Right now, we’ve had a few people decline so if someone added a guest on i would just let it go, but I do think it’s rude to just add more people on.
Whatever you choose to do, send the RSVP back ASAP. Mine are due back in a week and I still haven’t received over half of them. That’s a lot of phone calls for my mom to make!


I agree with this. When we did our invites if it was to more than just the husband and wife we always put “and family” just so they knew. I would say if they did not put “and family” than most likely the kids were not invited. From what I remember this is the proper way to address invites.


I know what you mean; our daughter will be married in just over a week and there were about 30 people on the groom’s side who had to be called. It is time consuming and annoying.

And it is true that if the invitation is addressed to “Mr. and Mrs.”, then that is just what it means. However, the groom’s mother had confused the situation by saying the “kids” would be invited.

Now, if you want a real faux pas, come to our rehearsal dinner next week; the groom’s parents (who are giving the dinner) are using it to invite about 60+ employees who AREN’T invited to the wedding!!! Last I heard, there were 170 people invited to the rehearsal dinner, at least half of them strangers to the bride and groom. The groom’s mother was annoyed that we “limited” their invitations to the wedding to 150, due to budget and space limitations and the fact that my dd and future son-in-law wanted to have at least a vague idea of who the people at their wedding were.

I’m going to write a wedding etiquette book when this is over.


Another bride here, sending out invites this weekend (!!!). I totally agree with what OSUbride said.

Technically, it sounds like only you and your husband were invited. It would have said Mr & Mrs. Smith and Family on the invitation outside envelope, or would have included your children’s names on the inner envelope if all were invited. Since your children are all technically adults (well, except for the 17 y/o), they probably would have received their own invitations anyway.

A lot of people ask for clarification on invitations, but really brides use good old Emily Post and what she and her ilk have to say about clarity on wedding invitations. The message that is supposed to be politely conveyed by not including “and Family” or each family member’s name on an invitation is that not all are invited. Most people aren’t so keenly familiar with Emily Post, though…So yours is a common ‘faux pas’.

Also, from my perspective…it’s typically the bride and her family mailing out the invitations. I know my FMIL would probably similarly extend an invitation in that predicament without thinking about the guest list constraints. As tough as it is, there’s only so much money…and depending on the type of reception, you could be talking about $70 a plate per extra guest. It can quickly spiral out of control…Just something to be aware of.


The thing is, folks, that the the invitation was not properly addressed in the first place. Instead of being addressed to "Mr. & Mrs. John Doe, it read “Jane and John Doe.” The invitation looks like it was computer generated. It did not have a formal inner envelope with “Mr. & Mrs. John Doe” on it, either. So I figured if they’re clueless about the proper way to address their invations, maybe they were clueless about inviting our children. So I wanted to clarify the situation, especially since I was told specifically that the kids would be included.

To all you brides out there–best wishes.


No, I think it was fine.

As someone else alluded to, if you are able, I would give a larger gift to reflect that it is coming from 5 people not 2.

God Bless


I think it depends on the wedding. If the wedding is the type where there’s going to be a sit-down dinner…three extra people could be a HUGE deal. If it’s the type of wedding where there’s going to be a buffet with snacks (in other words, a more informal reception) I would think it wouldn’t matter at all.

I would also think that people planning a more formal reception would also have more formal invitations, though I could be wrong.


Than Jane and John Doe are the ones who are invited, not anyone else. If you really want to get to the bottom of this call the bride up, she will know better than anyone else. As we have already said the names on the invite are the names of the people who are invited. If your children’s names were no where on the invite and it did not say “and family” than your children are not invited. It’s really that simple. But like I said call the bride and clarify it with her.

For the record when I did my invites I was very specific. My invites read "Mr John and Mrs Jane Doe and family, or just simply Mr John and Mrs Jane Doe.


That’s different then. It’s their job to be clear, and if they weren’t, then you have every right to seek clarification!

An online RSVP doesn’t seem like something Emily Post would approve of, anyway ;).

Have fun at the wedding, and thanks for your good wishes!


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