Monday, May 12, 2008

Weddings and Budgeting

Let me preface this by saying I love my family dearly and am very close to all of them. Now that has been said, I will proceed to rant over the fact that my sister's wedding planning is driving me crazy!!!

Several weekends ago, I (as Maid of Honor) had to endure Bridal Shower #1 (of 2) in which Sister opened up thousands of dollars worth of junk that she 1) does not need and 2) has no room for in her tiny studio apartment.

A little bit about Sister. She does not cook. She hates most food and is afraid of meat. She is profoundly materialistic. She has debt too but never speaks about it. In fact, NO ONE in my family EVER talks about money if they don't have to.

According to her registry, my sister has asked for no fewer than six pots and pans, all over $100 each.
This Williams Sonoma Stainless Steel Saute Pan can sit in my parent's garage indefinitely for only $255!

Not that I'm complaining. I'm not. Not really. It's just hard for me to sit next to her and watch her open all these things when I can't even afford anything to cook most of the time, much less stainless steel pots to cook them in. I even had to borrow money to take the bus to the shower!

And yet she sits there like a queen.

My Mom says when I get married the same thing will happen for me. I keep telling her that I will not, under any circumstances, request that my friends and family spend $255 on a PAN for me. She disagrees. I told her I don't value things like that. She just shakes her head. It's so frustrating and I'm beginning to be turned off by the ritualistic nature of marriage itself these days.

Not to parents are spending in excess of $25k for the single event.

Yes that's right. Twenty five thousand dollars is my conservative estimate of that they will be dishing out the day my thirty year old sister marches down the aisle.

On top of the rather extravagant Engagement Party my parents threw for her last summer, with a bill they revealed to me as over $5k. No expenses were spared - D.J., tent, food, bar. And that doesn't factor in the expenses they incurred getting our house ready for the party - they painted and landscaped and repaved the driveway!

All in all (minus gifts), they will be spending over $30k on my sister this year. And they are NOT rich people. Do you know what I could do with $30k?


Anonymous said...

Girl, you just need to suck it up and try to be happy for your sister at least act like one because your mom and eventually your sisetr might think you are just being jealous..Remember people learn things in life at their own pace and sometime there will be things we will never "get" it.

Anonymous said...

I totally understand. I've become bitter about weddings too. And it's sad because I wish I wasn't.
Most of the weddings/showers/teas I'm invited too are in the south and I live in nyc. I always feel pressure to go to them, but i just can't afford it.

Anonymous said...

I'm late to this post (found you thru Escape Brooklyn) but had to comment.

It seems to me there is an inverse relationship between the amount of gifts people ask for and how happy they about marrying their betrothed.

My friend got all kinds of fancy stuff (I know she hasn't used half of it) and she's getting divorced three years later.

My cousin had a modest if large list, but she got married right after college and it made sense as she needed help setting up a house. The registered for everyday dishes and household tools.

I'm getting married in October at 37 years old and didn't bother registering. Anything we want we can buy it ourselves. Not like we have a ton of money, but we have a small place and don't need anything else.

I'm just thrilled to be marrying my guy. The only reason we're having reception (which we are paying for ourselves) is because our families are so spread out and we'd love to share the day with them.

If people want to buy us something we'll graciously accept it. If people want to give us money we'll put it to practical use. If people don't want to give us anything I'm ok with that too. They are GIFTS not tickets to admission to the event!

I cheer you on and support your needing to vent here.