Ask Gretchen: Help Us With Our Guest List!

A Reader Asks:
We can’t decide whether to keep the wedding attendees limited to our immediate family or whether to include close friends and extended family. The problem is protocol with who to invite and who to not invite among extended family and friends. We want those there who will celebrate our union with us but my partner is concerned that some in this extended group may come to watch a freak show and does not want that to happen. Any suggestions?
A Mom Answers:
The fact that you are standing up in front of friends and family to make a life-long commitment to one another speaks volume to those close to you. Gay weddings can be transformational to those who come to celebrate with you. Suddenly their perspective shifts when they experience something first hand that has only lived in their thoughts previously.
Have your attendees be special in your life and who support you now. This is important for the two of you on this very momentous occasion.
My daughter and her partner chose to invite only those guests to their wedding who knew both of them with a very few exceptions. (This was tough on a Mom who wanted to invite many more!) This worked well as they decided to whom to send invitations. I later gave them a reception in Dallas (the wedding was in Maryland) and invited all my friends whether they knew the two of them or not. Not everyone was sure what to expect, but most of my invitees attended and had a wonderful time. I am sure most of my guests have never been to a gay function, much less a party celebrating a gay union!
The best advice is follow your hearts and make certain you both support your decision. My vote goes to include friends and extended family. Those who are really against it will probably choose not to come anyway.

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