Perfect Responses To Every Person Who Expects To Be Invited To Your Wedding… But Isn’t

Posted By | May 2016

I get a lot of questions about guest list politics and etiquette. Couples always find it hard to tell friends, family or people they run into at the supermarket that they’re not going to be invited. Avoiding the question is the worst thing you can do. Speaking to couples I get a feel for what they want to say and what they should say. My advice generally falls into two camps:

 

The Political Response – The one you should send

The Honest Response – The one you would send if you gave zero fucks

 

The honest responses are purely for cathartic reasons – laugh with your SO or BFF at how you wish you were bad-ass enough to come out with it but I know you’re (probably) not mean enough to actually use them! I don’t encourage you to use any of the honest responses and hold no responsibility for any of the (terrible) things that will happen if you do!

 

Perfect Responses To Every Person Who Expects To Be Invited To Your Wedding... But Isn't

 

The ‘You were in my life, but now I have new friends’

The Political Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

It’s so good to hear from you, only the other day I was thinking about that <uni thing/travelling thing/thing in common>.

I can’t believe that it’s been so long since we’ve seen each other and that we probably both know very little about each other’s lives now (beyond the odd Facebook update).

You know you’ll always hold a space in my heart. The thing is, we’re trying to keep it to a small group of family and friends so it feels like a good reflection of our lives now (not that I wouldn’t love to spend all day reminiscing with you and <your other partner in crime> about our ridiculous days in <that place you spent a crazy summer in>, but I don’t think my future mother-in-law would be too impressed by the stories and the, let’s face it, inevitable Tequila shots we’d end up doing together!

I hope you can understand why we aren’t sending out many invitations. We’ll have to schedule in a night to remember together (although we’ll probably forget it by the morning!)

Love,

<You>

 

The Honest Response

 

Oh… <Their name(s)>?

I don’t know if anyone has ever told you this, but by 34 you really should have moved past the 24-7 student culture of ‘if you’re not out 3 nights a week, you’re not living’. It’s not that I don’t look back fondly at our unbreakable partnership from the ages of 18 to 22, it’s just that I’ve moved forward and you’re still living the same life.

There’s nothing wrong with wanting to have a dinner party instead of knocking back ‘ironic’ apple sourz. I was actually pretty hurt when you chastised me in front of my co-workers for not wanting to pull an ‘all-night-rager’ with you and your new party friends. That was not cool.

Thing is <their name(s)>, I have new friends, nice friends, friends who won’t try and pressure me into going to a warehouse rave on a Sunday afternoon when I’d rather be returning from a farmers market with an olive loaf and some Kent pork sausages.

So unfortunately for you, they’ll be invited to my wedding, not you. And when we’re having an awesome post-ceremony, post-dinner party, I won’t even think about you for a second.

Bye,

<You>

 

The ‘I wish I could invite you, but my budget doesn’t stretch that far’

The Political Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

If there’s one thing I wish in this world it’s that all puppies would get adopted, but failing that I wish I had enough spare cash to invite everyone that’s important to me to our wedding. Weddings are (really) expensive and the more people I try to invite the more expensive it gets. This means that I’ve had to make political decisions to prioritise family – unfortunately only a few friends will be able to make the list.

I know we’ve always had a bond and I know you’re one of the awesome people who won’t judge me or hold it against me that I can’t invite you to my wedding (because you’re great like that).

Let’s get together soon.

Love,

<You>

 

The Honest Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

I really do wish I could invite you, but when it comes to making the choice between having everyone I want there and sacrificing my dream dress or a photographer who doesn’t use flash just because the sun has gone behind a cloud then I’ve had to make sacrifices I don’t really want to.

I’m sure you understand that when planning a wedding we have to make difficult decisions – and even though I won’t admit it, it was relatively easy to cut you. Let’s face it, when I’m working with a budget of £100 per additional person, I’m afraid I’ve got to start somewhere and cutting out my dodgy cousins apparently won’t go down well with my family.

Soz!

<You>

 

The ‘I’ve got to make a choice between you and your arch-nemesis… and you drew the short straw’

The Political Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

It’s no secret that you and <their arch nemesis> don’t get along. I understand that there are always two sides to every story, we’ve moved past what happened and I totally get your point of view.

You have to understand that this isn’t <their arch nemesis> asking me not to invite you, in fact <their arch nemesis> has no idea who’s on my guest list but I’ve got to make some tough decisions and I’m sorry that I’m going to have to leave you off the list.

It’s not a reflection of our friendship, just a reflection of me wanting to have the most stress free day I possibly can (if that’s even a thing?) and let relax and enjoy <herself/himself>.

Let’s have our own day, together, just you, and me. We’ll celebrate in style without the drama and hassles of other people distracting us from each other. I really hope you can understand that it’s a difficult situation and I still love you.

Love,

<You>

 

The Honest Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

So I know you feel like everyone has moved on and we’re all being adults about it – but I’m just going to throw this out there: what you did was not OK.

In some ways we’ve all tried to move past it but the truth is <their arch nemesis> hasn’t, and honestly I don’t really blame <him/her>.

If there’s one thing I don’t want at my wedding it’s two people who might end up in a screaming match after a few drinks – come on, it’s a day to celebrate love not hate! In the grand scheme of things, you were in the wrong and it’s time to let <their arch nemesis> relax and get their flirt on without your smug mug in their face every five minutes.

I’ve had to make a choice and you, my friend, are the one on the chopping block.

Adios,

<You>

 

The ‘Genuinely… who are you?

The Political Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

Getting engaged and planning this wedding has been an absolute whirlwind and writing a guest list is quite possibly the largest and most difficult list of names that I’ve ever written.

In my rush to get these invitations out I may have missed out a few important people but I can’t be 100% certain because my mind feels like jelly at the moment.

I know this is probably hugely embarrassing (more for me than for you) but could you remind me how we know each other?

Thanks,

<You>

 

The Honest Response

 

Erm… <Their name(s)>?

I’ve spent the last 3 months meticulously drafting and redrafting our wedding guest list. It’s taken a long time and there isn’t a single person on this list who I haven’t considered the pro’s and con’s of and gone through a comprehensive rehash of our shared history.

In not one of those drafts did you name come up – I’m also pretty sure your name has never even made an appearance in my life.

To be honest I am kind of curious who you are and why you think you’re such an important part of my life that you feel the need to try and invite yourself, so please, go ahead and dig that hole a little deeper.

Good luck,

<You>

 

The ‘You have children and I don’t want them at my wedding’

The Political Response

 

Hi <Their name(s)>

Thanks so much for your enthusiasm about our wedding. We’re really looking forward to it so it’s great to hear that you’re excited too.

I know you’re such a close-knit family (don’t sue me if I spend the next 5 years trying to imitate you!) and I totally get that you want to make sure <kid’s name(s)> get to experience all the big moments they can with you in their younger years.

The thing is, it’s going to be a very adult oriented day (get your mind out of the gutter you rascal) and I don’t want to make you and your little ones feel out of place or make you have to struggle through a long day that would likely test both your and their patience.

Our venue is really not designed to be a place for children (we’re talking Indiana Jones style booby traps), I jest! But seriously, there’s a fast flowing river, plenty of levels for them to trip over and crack their heads on and generally it’s just not a place anyone would feel comfortable letting their kids have free reign in. I don’t want to:

a. Be responsible for causing them harm, or;
b. Make you spend 12 hours constantly looking out for their wellbeing and not enjoying yourself

So unfortunately, as a function of the kind of wedding we’re having we won’t be able to invite children and I know you wouldn’t want to come without them.

Love,

<You>

 

The Honest Response

 

<Their name(s)>

You’ll never hear me say this in real life, and nobody ever should have to say this, but nobody cares about your baby.

Yes it’s a miracle that you and your partner made this puke machine, but seriously, every single person in the history of the human race has been a baby. Don’t act like you’re the first person to discover baby shoes (seriously, baby shoes? That’s like buying suncream for an anglerfish).

While I’d love to invite you to our wedding I don’t want to give you more of an opportunity to take poor quality flash photos of your child being rude to my grandpa, it’s not funny.

You may say I’ll understand when I have one, you may say you can keep <kid’s name(s)> quiet, you may say it’ll be even cuter if I have one as a bridesmaid. But please, give me just this one day when I don’t have to bend to the whims of a child.

So no, unfortunately you shouldn’t expect a wedding invitation in the post any time soon.

<You>

 

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