Wedding Committees: a quick way to lose friends

Has someone famous and respected ever said hi to you and you felt like you were walking on the moon? Or they shook your hand and you didn’t wash that hand for 2 days? Just raise your hand, no one is judging you. Well that’s how I felt when Mark Gungor, world renown speaker on marriage and family shared my post on 50 shades of nonsense. I’m still excited, saying hi to random people in the streets. Anyway, today’s post is about wedding committees. Yes, you read right.  Sit tight and let me tell you why wedding committees have been rubbing me off the wrong way nowadays. And I am not alone. I have asked a couple of friends whether I should write about this and they gave me the go ahead. One of my pals even offered to give me a paragraph, just in case I didn’t have enough content.  This post is mostly for those who are yet to get married. So, here goes. I know I will offend some of you but if you look past the offense you might learn something about friendship and etiquette.

I will start with the wedding committee invitations. Here are some things your friends think about but never have the guts to tell you.

We are not that close. I have close friends and I will easily drop what I’m doing to be there for these friends, even in the middle of the night. Now, these friends don’t need to write me a text to invite me for their wedding committee. I know who they’re dating and where their relationship is at. I will attend their ruracio (dowry ceremony), give my time and money without being asked. Why? Coz we’re close like that.

If I don’t know you very well, please don’t send me a text asking me for money. If I don’t have your phone number, chances are you fall into this category. If you’re a friend of a friend (whom I haven’t spoken to in ages), same category. If the only communication I have from you on my phone is that text then I’m sorry, again no money.  I say this with utmost politeness. You are putting me in an awkward position. And friends don’t do that to friends  How would you feel if someone you hadn’t seen since high school called you and asked you for money without as much as a “How do you do?”

Use some PR. This closely relates to the point above. If we haven’t been in touch for ages, it would be wise to use some PR. Call (don’t text) and let’s catch up.  Don’t bring up the issue on the first call. Reconnect first. Then, bring up the matter. I might see through the facade but I will appreciate the effort. Disclaimer: Use this only with old friends, not people who barely know you.

Is this the right time? This is something you would know if we were close friends. The week I was discharged from hospital after losing my baby, I got a text asking for financial support for a wedding. Seriously? Chances are that guy had no intentions of offending me. It’s just that he had no idea how terrible his timing was. Here’s the thing, my close friends knew that I was grieving and I no longer had a job. In actual sense, I could very easily have been the one needing financial support at that time.

Mode of communication: You never ever ask for someone’s help on sms, Twitter DM, and Facebook inbox. You call. If it’s official business, drop that person an email and possibly follow it with a phone call. As you air your request, consider all the above points.

Say, you have have talked and they finally come for your wedding committee meeting. Here are some things to note. I interviewed a few people and this is what is what I got.

The wedding is yours, do your part. The work of the committee is to help you out not do everything. It is your work to get service providers, arrange transport for your families and anything else that comes with planning a wedding. Please note that this will also minimize the power the committee will have. I remember being exasperated when we recommended a photographer to a “friend” and then two nights before the wedding, the committee decided they wanted a different photographer!

We will not fund your luxurious wedding. Most of the time, committees come to help you raise money to cater for the budget. Don’t take advantage of people to get yourself some expensive wedding. If you want a luxurious day, save the money. Don’t plan for a sh 500,000 and your contribution as a couple is sh 100,000. Be a good steward of resources, both yours and those belonging to others. Don’t force people to pledge. Calling and texting someone every week does not qualify as a gentle reminder.

Balance out. Help can come in two ways; people will either give you money or their time. The younger generation might not have a lot of money but they will be available to run errands for you the big day. Allocate them duties like ushering, transport management and other things you want done. The older guys will most likely give you money but not time. Appreciate both dimensions.

Duration: Have you been invited to be part of a wedding committee and during the first meeting you heard that there would be meetings every 2 weeks and the wedding is 6 months away? How did you feel when the meeting ended 2 hours later? If you have experienced this then you know what I mean. Dear bride and groom please, value people’s time.

Well, that’s it for today. Feel free to share your thoughts on this issue on the comments section. Have a splendid day!



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