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How to Deal If Your Mom Is Trying to Take Over Wedding Planning

You love her but she's acting like it's her special day!

Contributing Writer
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Photography by: New Line Cinema/Courtesy Neal Peters Collection

Mothers trying to elbow their way into their daughter's wedding planning is nothing new. You've heard it before: Money equals power, and if your parents are paying for the wedding, they (really just Mom) may feel entitled to make all the decisions, or else she's planning the wedding she wanted but never had. Here's what you can do to calm the situation.

 

Related: For the Mother of the Bride: 6 Ways You're Making Wedding Planning Difficult (and How to Stop!)

 

Ask her for help.

Mom's dictatorial tendencies may stem from her feeling left out if you haven't been consulting her or asking for her advice. It may not be her wedding, but it's a major day in her life, too, so let her know her opinion counts.

 

Decide who has the final say.

Settle this as soon as your parents tell you they'll pick up the tab for the day. It's your wedding but their wallet, so it needs to be established who's the decider.

 

Share duties.

Decide which elements mean the most to you and handle those while leaving others to your mom. If you're into the wedding dress, bouquet, and music, ask your mom to choose a cake flavor and the favors, or any other details that you're not as passionate about. But be sure to ask her to show you her choices before committing; that way, if you absolutely hate them, she can try again. 

 

Remind your mom that it's not her wedding.

Some mothers just need a gentle reminder that it's your day, not hers. It can help if she takes some time to remember her own wedding. Maybe she wanted a big ten-piece band to play during the reception, but her own mom forced her to hire that smooth jazz quartet. If she realizes that she's becoming that person, she may back down. Even so, the two of you should learn to work as a team, share ideas, and be open-minded. 

 

Pay for the wedding yourselves.

If you don't have the money for the wedding your parents agreed to fund, have the wedding you can afford. You'll get to make every decision yourself without interference.