(Please note the next post will feature both Jonathan and I in a video – that’ll be fun.)
So this is a touchy topic that I feel needs mentioning. It’s touchy because people don’t like to be told what to do. They feel that they should be able to bring or do whatever they want. It’s touchy because some people are going through a lot and money spending is a scary topic. We relate. So take it from me. I know. But it needs mentioning.
First, let me start by saying that you should do what feels comfortable for you, but you should not do whatever you want. I know the urge to regift that vase is real, but hold back.
Secondly, let me also mention that I understand sometimes coming in without a gift feels a little bit disheartening. You feel like you’re not being gracious unless you bring something material to the wedding. And whether it is monetary or boxed, you feel indebted to your hosts. I understand that.
I’m going to open this topic with an anecdote. It is a cultural anecdote. It is obvious that Jonathan and I are not of the same culture. But in this regard, he and I feel the same. In my culture, the parents usually provide the houseware and home appliances for the new couple. They do so to prepare them for their new lives together, so that all they will have to worry about are the basics and not the details. Even then, my parents have held back for their own financial reasons with buying appliances and major home devices.
But it is because of this reason that we do not necessarily require boxed gifts at the wedding. First of all, we understand that a gift is given and should be accepted. But again, having expressed that culturally those things are covered for us, please respect that.
Which is another way of saying we do not want boxed gifts. But it is not a way of saying we want your money instead.
If you can’t afford to give a monetary gift then please do not feel obligated to do so. We are more than happy to host a party for you. And we require nothing but your presence. Any gift you choose to make or do not choose to make is irrelevant.
We understand that these are difficult times financially for many people, and we are one of them. Hence why the tagline of this blog is that we are two broke people. And that is true. We are financing this wedding on her own. I have not asked my parents to help me and Jonathan has not asked his parents to help him.
We are doing this out of our love for each other and our compromise is that for two years we have been broke planning this wedding. But by no means is that a responsibility of yours to repay us.
The housing market has pretty much crapped all over our dreams right now. And it’s going to take us a substantial amount of time to acquire the money needed for a very good down payment. And we do not have a home right now. So buying us something that we have no room for or that does not coincide with our hopes and dreams and future plans, is not something we need.
Above all, I want you to know that any wedding you’ve been to where people shit talked how much money someone else brought is a wedding full of assholes.
It is not your business how much money someone has in their checking account and how much they can bring. You did not invite them to a bank, you invited them to a celebration. Whether it’s $50 or $200, it isn’t anything to spit at.
In my culture, monetary gifts are preferred. Jonathan prefers them, though his cultures do boxed gifts as well. But we as people do not expect anything out of you that you are not comfortable bringing or cannot bring.
So to answer the question whether you should bring them or not, in any wedding including ours, speak to the bride and groom and find out where they’re coming from. Understand their needs and understand how they feel about the situation. And if you don’t feel comfortable asking, just know that a heartfelt card has always meant more throughout history then something meaningless just purchased to appease a gift buying quota.
But please, we have a deep fryer. I have so many towels I could make a towel bed. I have a toaster. I think I even have a bathrobe or two. Don’t worry about that.
Come eat, drink, and dance with us. The drinks are on us, so is the food. I can’t dance so that’s a problem.
We’ll talk soon.