"It's YOUR day, do what YOU want!"
I felt like slapping anyone who said that to me, it got so offensive. What kept me from doing it was that it was people who mean well, but just plain didn't understand.
I don't know about everyone else's family situation, but I feel my family deserves a lot more respect from me than some of the girls in weddingplans are showing their families.
My parents changed my diapers; took care of me when I had pneumonia as an infant; immigrated with me when I was 2 to a foreign country; built a life from scratch while learning a second language; provided for me, made sure I had food, clothes, shelter and books; encouraged me to excel academically, so that I could have a chance at University and a better life than they had.
They're not the best parents, they'll be the first to tell you that. But they did what they could, the best they knew how. And considering their situation, they did damned well.
I'm grateful to my family. I'm happy to be able to make them proud of the wedding I had. I didn't mind at all that a large majority of our guest list was friends of the family that my husband and I have never met. I'm happy that my parents could feel proud in front of all their friends that their daughter married a great man and has married into a good family. I'm happy that my husband's grandparents and parents got to brag about what a pretty and smart girl their son was bringing into the family. I'm happy to hear them exclaim "She does computer work!" to the impressed oohs and aahs of their friends. I'm happy to have been able to contribute to their bragging rights. Even if it wasn't everything I wanted.
I'm sure being stuck with a child and not being able to travel, or having to stay up several nights in a row with an ice bag on your baby's forehead so that she doesn't hemorrhage to death, or having to deal with Chinese School homework wars wasn't exactly everything they wanted either.
Yes, we opted to pay for the whole wedding ourselves for the veto power, but we used it carefully, sparingly and only when it was truly impossible, it became our trump card.
Life isn't always about what you want, money or not.