I get your point about cards that are just signed, but as a “words of affirmation” love languages person, I just LOVE cards/notes/letters/emails with personal, kind messages. I save them all. And re-read particularly encouraging things when I’m feeling down.
There have been MANY weddings that I have attended where I have had to wait a couple months to give a gift (most of the time because I had a high credit card bill after spending a bunch of cash on flights, hotel, etc). If you JUST got back from your honeymoon, it sounds like she is still in the clear. Give. Her. Time.
Get her something now? It’s never too late! Plus no one else is probably getting her a 8 year anniversary gift besides her spouse!
ETA: I shouldn’t say buying something off the registry is less thoughtful. I suppose if I had children or a crazy busy career, I wouldn’t be able to lend my time the way that I have.
But seriously, you’ve asked this woman to spend hundreds to look how you want her to look for your wedding and then you want to cause drama because she didnt get you a gift?
I purposely did not use the “gift” section of the APW spreadsheet and just kept a list of thank yous to write in a word document, because I don’t need to know if someone didn’t get us a gift. a friend just recently mentioned that he hadn’t gotten us something and I’d had no idea. plus, most people traveled for the wedding so that was plenty gift for me!
To be fair, LW did say “wedding card or gift.” I interpreted card as just a card, no cash/gc included. LW does say “wedding gift” elsewhere, but maybe she considers a card-sans-cash a gift. Personally, I don’t care so much about gifts of stuff or cash, but I would be pretty hurt if a close friend couldn’t be bothered to send me a card to wish me well. I agree, though, that “confronting” someone about a lack of gift is in poor taste.
I think it really depends on how you word it. And your audience. I am a thank you note sender pretty much at all times, and we had a destination wedding, so everyone got a thank you note. If we didn’t receive a thing as a gift, I thanked them what they did- helped set up, stood up with us as a member of the wedding party, came and danced with us and generally supported our fledgling marriage by coming.
Oh man this is the wedding I am MOH for right now. When I was asked to participate a year ago it was with the chill attitude of, “it will be no big deal! I don’t care what you wear, I just want you to come!” As this wedding gets closer I am realizing it is not at all the “chill” event it was presented to be. I am happy to participate, but I am constantly having to readjust my expectations (and budget!) around this wedding.
Though I agree with Lawyerette and others that gift giving is never an obligation, I feel compelled to offer a little redemption for the LW who is maybe a gift oriented person who was especially looking forward to receiving this gesture from her close friends and family. That said, I also find the tone and wording off putting.
In my family, we don’t even celebrate my parents’ anniversary with them. They do their thing. It is considered their anniversary, not ours; a private event, not a family event.
That’s such a good idea about 18ths and 21sts, Erin.
Yup, I made similar sacrifices (though probably not as extensive as yours) but since I had just moved 400 miles away before the wedding and was starting my first real job after grad school my friend said “I really don’t expect a gift.” Of course 8 years later I now wish I bought her something special.
We got an unsigned card with cash in it. We also tried to track down the giver, but had no luck. I make myself feel better by assuming they went anonymous on purpose…for some reason.
I WAS THIS BRIDESMAID!!!!!! I was a BM in my very best friend’s wedding a couple of years ago. She was an extremely difficult bride, and I talked to her for hours (hours) every. single. day. about her wedding for a year and a half.
If someone said no gifts, I probably wouldn’t get them a card. Because I just told them congratulations in person at their wedding. I’m not a big card person though, but I get that other people are. I give gifts at most weddings I attend, but I never give cards.
Agreeing with others. I’m the anon who talked about approaching her best friend about this exact same issue upthread (downthread? I haven’t refreshed so I’m not sure where it is), and it going very poorly, so I say don’t say anything and wait for gift-giver to approach you. But solidarity on being stressed about this – due to my terrible post office, I am stressed to this day that some people didn’t get thank-you notes for the wedding gifts they sent us!
When I got married, years ago, I gave my bridesmaids gifts to show my appreciation of them. Nothing extravagant, just little freshwater pearl earring and necklace sets. I did not expect them to give ME gifts, specifically because they had spent their money and time on my wedding.
less cards received means less for me to throw out.
He probably didn’t even realize it was his birthday. But how could you snub him like that?! (kidding)
But does anyone get into that paranoid situation where someone who usually is a gift-giver didn’t appear to send one, but you’re worried they may have and it never made it’s way to you? Our post office is TERRIBLE, and I would hate for someone to think I am ungrateful for not sending a thank you note… When really the gift never made it? Is there a good way to approach that situation?
And for all those that say that you don’t have to reciprocate with the same gift that you give and it’s all about the thought, BULL!!!!
I received THREE cards for my birthday this year, which I was incredibly surprised by. I don’t remember the last time I got a birthday card. (I’m 27.) One of my friends always brings a small present, but no one else would. I personally mostly hate gifts, but I will always write a check for a wedding.
Brought to you from a wee house in bonny Scotland, my thoughtful cards and gifts are designed to warm your heart. I create all of my designs in my old bedroom at my Mum and Dad’s house just o...
Engagement present for my auntie
I’m confused about the expectations here. My understanding of wedding etiquette is that the couple doesn’t receive gifts from the wedding party – those people have already given gifts of time, energy, skill and likely money as well in helping make the wedding happen. (All that travel and those clothes and helping with things like hen nights is not cheap!)
We decorate our tree on our anniversary, and I had envisioned pulling each ornament out of the box and thinking about the giver, and one day explaining to our kids that X ornament was a wedding gift from auntie so-and-so, and Y was a gift from cousin such-and-such.
No way! Don’t give your guests instructions you wouldn’t follow. Totes unfair :)
It’s absolutely possible to graciously request no gifts. You’ll still receive a few– graciously, of course.
No one, I repeat no one, who is this invited to your wedding is obligated to give you a gift. If they were required to do it then it wouldn’t be a gift, it would be a fee.
But if you aren’t planning to give a thing for a wedding, giving just a card can be helpful for letting the couple know. From the other end, it was nice to be able to check someone off the list- I didn’t really care if people gave a thing, but it was helpful to know I hadn’t lost something or that nothing was lost in the mail.
We do the same! He likes giving money and I like picking random things off the registry (kitchen spoons and spatulas, measuring cups, etc.).
It’s hard not to compare, and its great that you can see that you’re doing it. But, do you want to stop? Are you willing to have a purely positive feeling about this friendship, without that sharp edge? Are you interested in seeing this person as the true friend that they are, and to see the actions that they take to be that whole, complete human? Or are they just a person who couldn’t be bothered to get a card?
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Other than that, I agree with you. A gift is never required. A confrontation is not appropriate. Some people I’m sure, gave more than you expected. Unless you are giving them a refund, don’t ask for a recount from the frugal bridesmaid.
Sure- the gift giver can contact you to confirm you received it when they don’t get a thank you, or you can check and see if a gift from an online registry has been lost in transit by sleuthing tracking numbers. But aside from that, no, I don’t think it’s appropriate to ask.
Finally I can say what I’ve been holding on to all these years. You’re a jerk for going off registry and I’m glad you didn’t get a TY note! ;-)
Yup!! My little sister who was a bridesmaid was like “So, I can afford to get you a shower gift or a wedding gift, which do you want?” I told her she didn’t have to get either, but shower would probably be more fun because then I get to open it in front of her.
I think there are lots of different ways to accomish goals of getting married/celebrated/etc, but you can’t necessarily decide that you’re both not going to include them in witnessing the legal part and expect them all the behave as though they have been included in everything.
The bachelorette party and bridal shower I planned was a gift. Cooking the food for the rehearsal dinner was a gift. Helping with decor and planning was a gift. IMO these gifts were a lot more thoughtful than grabbing something off of the registry.
Except, apparently, it is? Because people just did it to you?