Monday, May 29, 2006

The Final Hurdle (I Hope)

Wedding Post #2: Infuriated

I'm a pretty easygoing guy, as practically anyone that knows me could attest. One thing that is guaranteed to make me angry, though, is when I'm put into a position, through no fault of my own, where I end up disappointing or hurting the feelings of someone I'm close to. Unfortunately, this does happen occasionally.

Very early on in the wedding planning, Brandi and I had a discussion about how nice it would be if there were no kids at our wedding or reception. I thought we were speaking hypothetically, since there are children in both of our families and excluding them would create too much drama. Beyond that, I was thinking of little kids--I didn't have an age limit in mind, but if I had been asked, I probably would have said under ten. And it wouldn't have mattered because, as I said, I thought it was hypothetical.

Imagine my surprise, then, when shortly thereafter Brandi told me that her stepmom (Brandi's dad and stepmom are paying for this whole shebang) was running with the idea of "no kids," and that our guest list would have an age floor of 18. She said it was due to space concerns--our upper limit for guests was 150, and a preliminary guest list approached that number. She also said that her stepmom had gone ahead and informed their family and had dealt with the anger that had been aroused by it, and that I would have to do the same for my family.

Personally, I saw this as a prime example of jumping the gun. I knew not everyone we invited would be able to come, and so I figured once RSVPs started coming in and we saw that what the actual numbers looked like, we'd be able to open it up to the kids after all. So I held off on breaking the news to the people in my family who have kids, hoping it would never even need to be an issue.

As it turned out, I was right, but only partially right. Our final guest count, not including kids, was below 100, so there was plenty of room for them after all. Nevertheless, Brandi's stepmom refused to relent on the age limit, so I was stuck. I went ahead and abritrarily moved the limit down to 17 for one niece, who will turn 18 in October and has been very much looking forward to coming since well before this insipid age limit was put in place...but, unfortunately, there was nothing I could do for her younger sister. So I had to let my sister know that two of her daughters could come but one could not.

I think that was what irritated me most about this whole mess. I wasn't 100% opposed to the idea of "no kids," but I do think a better age limit could have been adopted so we at least didn't have to split up families. I mean, for me, the whole idea of leaving kids out is because little kids can be a pain in the ass and there's a higher probability of them disrupting the event or at least keeping those around them from fully enjoying it. Leaving out anyone younger than 18 is overkill in that regard. And situations like this are one reason why I think weddings in general are stupid. I see no reason why such a "joyous event" should also be a prime opportunity for disappointment and hurt feelings, which is what this age limit caused.

So I was absolutely furious about being backed into such a corner, and even now, a full week after the final verdict came down, I'm pretty prickly about it. Plenty of room to include everyone, but sure, let's go ahead and just kick them in the shins a little bit instead. Isn't that what weddings are for?

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