Do you have to tell them everything?
wedding couple with parents

Some brides and grooms happily share wedding planning details with their parents, especially when their mothers and fathers accept everything with open minds and supportive hearts. Other couples prefer to keep their wedding details private, opting not to share much with anyone, even their parents, in favor of surprising everyone on the big day. But there's a whole gray area in between those two extremes. Here's what to do if that's where you are.

How much do you really need to tell them?

It depends on a few factors, like who's footing the bill. Let's say your parents are paying and gave you a budget. Though they left all the decisions up to you, they may still want to know how much you're spending on the centerpieces-and you should tell them. Their questioning is part parental concern ("Is she staying within the budget?" they wonder) and part curiosity (their daughter is getting married!). But if their questions become intrusive, let them know how you feel and come to a compromise.

If they're not paying, there's no obligation to share the wedding's costs with them unless you want to. But do give them a rundown of how planning is shaping up and some fun details like the menu you're considering or what the bridesmaids will wear. Another factor that influences how much to tell them is how involved you want them to be. Some parents are famous for giving unsolicited opinions, which may either be helpful when you're unsure of something or stressful if you feel they're pressuring you. You and the groom know your parents best and how they'll handle wedding news. It may be better to only answer their questions rather than offering an up-to-date summary of the planning.

Keep your parents updated with these tips.

Do you and Mom talk almost every night? If you're that close, it's highly likely that you're already chatting about the wedding. But if daily calls to Mom aren't your thing, send a weekly text or email to her, filling her in on your progress and, if you want, asking for her opinion. Be sure to make it a group text or email that includes Dad, too.

Make sure you include his parents, too.

By tradition, the groom's parents have had a less-active role in wedding planning, mainly because they weren't usually paying for anything but the rehearsal dinner. But there's no reason to keep them in the dark now. Every few weeks, give them an update on what's happening (call, text, or email). They'll appreciate you remembering them!


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