Ask Heather: Mother-in-law involvement

Wedding dress shopping with mom and mother in law

Dear Heather,

My future mother-in-law wants to be involved in everything related to the wedding. Do I have to include her when I go dress shopping? I really want it to be just me and my mom.

Still Mommy’s Girl

Dear Still,

Your FMIL will soon be your MIL, and therefore a part of your family. I totally understand wanting to only share the dress experience with your mom, but maybe you could schedule a couple of trips, the first with only your mom, and the second to show off the dress you and your mom chose together. Personally, I ended up going to three different dress shops, and making two trips to the one where I eventually bought my dress, so you could very well need to make more than one trip anyway. Or, perhaps you could include your FMIL using Skype or FaceTime. If you’re worried that your FMIL will be overbearing in regards to selecting the dress, you could also just invite her to your first fitting, so she has no other options except for the one you and your mom have already chosen.

As far as the rest of the wedding – are you open to your FMIL being involved in the details? If so, try to include her as much as possible. There’s definitely no harm in getting your relationship off on the right foot from the very start. On the other hand, if you need her to back off a little, give her a few things where she has total control and rein her in when it comes to everything else. For instance, if she’s gung ho about fashion, perhaps you could put her in charge of the outfits for the flower girl and ring bearer. Or if she’s passionate about music, ask for her help with your “must play” and “do not play” lists. Ideally, her preferences will lie where yours do not, which will mean that she’s essentially taking work you do not want off of your list of things to do!

Is your FMIL determined to play a big role in the wedding? Or is she content to let you run with whatever decisions you make? Let me know in the comments below!

Categories: Ask Heather, Wedding

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