We’ve got wedding and beauty blogger of Confetti & Curves, Karen Rees to give you the low-down on how to avoid any in-law trouble in your wedding planning process…
The date has been confirmed, and almost instantaneously, your neatly arrange personal planner is bunged with dress appointments, wedding fair flyers and cake sampling sessions. Yet in the midst of all this creative carnage, there may be a few VIPs left feeling a tad isolated… the in-laws.
It’s so easy to forget that there’s an entire family unit (equally important as your own) that may be completely oblivious to the upcoming wedding plans; and although many in-laws are perfectly happy with this scenario for others, it can lead to feelings of rejection and sometimes even resentment if they don’t feel the same level of involvement.
Out of nowhere tensions rise and emotions flare as you’re left wondering why you’ve been lumbered with such a treacherous display of family feuding. Is this a tiny glimpse of what to expect during married life? A moody mother-in-law offloading her dismay to anyone who’ll listen? Or worse still, comparing you to her other daughter-in-law who is seen as the definition of perfection.
However all this drama is often easily avoidable. You may be juggling work, planning a wedding and extra hours spent at the gym in light of that fabulous fishtail gown you’ve had your eye on, but there a few simple and manageable ways to keep your future in-laws from becoming outlaws…
As we all know, a wedding day isn’t just about the pretty dress and elaborate selfies. It’s a time when two families become one, so make them feel that way before the big day. Organising fun family get-togethers can be a great way of helping everyone bond, relax and feel included. It’s always a good idea to start off with a neutral environment such as trying out a new restaurant together. If all goes well, keep up the momentum with joint barbeques, birthdays and regular catch-ups.
Dress it up
Inviting both mums along to help you pick a dress is a great way of making everyone feel extra special, particularly if your mother-in-law has no little girls of her own to coo over. However, if this seems a little too invasive then why not ask for her help with choosing the bridesmaids gowns or accessories? It will really help in making her feel a big part of the leading ladies.
Don’t forget Daddy
Seeing as many grooms enjoy mulling over the manly aspects of wedding planning such as choosing cars, then why not encourage your future hubby to invite his dad along for the day? The two men can spend an entire afternoon bonding over some vintage vehicles, maybe grab some grub and have a good old father-son catch up.
If your groom’s dad is a whizz in the kitchen or his mum’s an expert in arts and crafts, you have the perfect opportunity to include their input for the important finishing touches such as making little edible favours or creating artistic centre pieces for the guest tables. You’ll be amazing at how thrilled they’ll be to show off their creative skills!
Keep in touch
Many brides I’ve spoken to find the prospect of calling their in-laws for a chat rather daunting, which is completely understandable if you don’t socialise together often. However, it’s good to push the boundaries and make the effort. Why not start out with a chirpy text message or email? At least they’ll know you’re thinking about them and aren’t as likely to feel completely left out of the loop.
Being able to build and maintain healthy relationships is something we all struggle with at the best of times, however regular communication can help avoid many unwanted feelings of exclusion. As they say, prevention is better than a cure. Happy planning! And for more fabulous tips, check out more from the Wedding Planning section.