My In-laws Brought Their Friends to Our Wedding Without Telling Us Anything

6 months ago

wedding is a special day that we hope goes smoothly, but sometimes, small things can cause big disruptions. I suddenly discovered that my in-laws had invited extra people who weren’t on the guest list. The problem? The venue couldn’t accommodate these additional guests. It was a tough situation, but we had to think quickly and come up with a solution.

Last weekend, I got married to my husband after planning for about a year. The ceremony was wonderful, even with kids in the church.

Everything seemed great, except for one problem — my in-laws invited around ten extra people without letting us know. They weren’t family or anyone we knew. I didn’t even notice them during the ceremony. The issue arose at the reception.

There weren’t enough seats for them, so our best man and groomsmen arranged a folding table and chairs for them. Food was available as we had a buffet, but since we assigned tables for eating based on numbers, and these extra guests didn’t have a number, they had to wait until the end when most of the food had been taken.

My in-laws felt embarrassed by how their friends were treated. I politely questioned what they expected when they invited people without informing us, especially since we were the ones planning and paying for the wedding.

They asked us to apologize for how their guests were treated. I agreed but mentioned that I would also clarify that these guests weren’t formally invited. I suggested if they wanted any other explanation given, they should do it themselves.

They’re upset with me, but thankfully, my husband fully supports me. I feel like I could have handled it with more grace, but I also believe it wasn’t our responsibility to manage.

Many users on Reddit find this situation completely unacceptable. They agree it’s not right for people to attend a celebration they weren’t invited to. Unfortunately, cases like these happen more often than expected. Some Redditors have even shared their own stories.

  • Reminds me of my MIL. I asked her for a list of relatives to send out invites. I couldn’t recognize a lot of people on the list. It turns out she added a bunch of “friends” as a family because “it’s only fair since the bride’s side is huge.” No-Abies-1232 / Reddit
  • A friend’s son was a groomsman at a wedding. My friend “assumed” that because her son was at the wedding and she knew the groom, it was ok to drop in at the wedding. My friend’s husband asked my opinion on whether they should go, and I responded with, “Do you have an invitation? No? Then you are NOT invited.” She was not happy with either of us. Shutupandplayball / Reddit
  • My husband’s stepmom brought three young adult kids to our wedding, whom we were not expecting. I assumed that it was my husband’s half-brothers and one of their girlfriends. They ended up staying at the house I moved into the day I got married because they needed a “cheap motel,” and my husband didn’t have the heart to send them away.
    Later, I found out it was only one of his half-brothers and two random kids that the stepmom “adopted.” One of them took his shirt off at our reception because he got so hot! It was wild. greytgreyatx / Reddit

Including certain phrases in your invitations can help guests understand the limitations and restrictions regarding additional guests. Here are some phrases you can consider including:


  • “We regret to inform you that our guest list is limited due to budget constraints.”
  • “As our family generously contributes to our wedding expenses, we aim to keep the guest count minimal.”
  • “We’re working towards saving for our future home while managing wedding expenses, so we’re keeping our guest list small.”


  • “Unfortunately, our chosen venue has a limited capacity, necessitating us to keep the guest list small.”
  • “We regretfully inform you that our venue cannot accommodate additional guests, including plus ones or children.”
  • “Our cherished venue has a maximum capacity of [NUMBER], and as a result, our guest list is restricted.”

Сouples typically spend around 200 to 300 hours organizing their weddings, equivalent to about 20 to 38 working days full-time. Even after all that work, some weddings still don’t go as planned. You can read more stories about these mishaps to see how other couples dealt with similar situations.


Get notifications
Lucky you! This thread is empty,
which means you've got dibs on the first comment.
Go for it!

Related Reads