Originally Posted by NewYorkRanger
I have no idea, and I had a big one. My mother in law though is in competition to do things better than her sisters can...the fact that our families dropped almost $100,000 in two days baffles me (both families are middle class). The food was ok, catered, drinks were ok (how much alcohol can one really consume?), Band was great, my wife looked beautiful, I was a fat bastard. Everyone knew we were two teachers as well...no one was going to be making "baller $" in the future...it still pisses me off when we go see her family. Now we make ends meet, but things could have been so much easier if there wasn't so much fucking competition in the family. What particularly kills me, is that my folks got roped into it as well. My brother's getting married this summer...small, at a local restaurant...if it costs $5k it'll be a lot. But if you love the girl, and she ain't budging, you really only have two choices...do what she wants, or break it off, but whatever you do, make sure YOU are cool with it, and it sounds like you're not cool with paying $25k for a "party".
It's not even just about the money for me though because I i've accepted the fact that I can't be cheap on the ring. I just don't want to be around 100 people. I don't usually find big parties filled with people I barely know very enjoyable. I have 3 friends that actually mean anything to me plus a couple more from boarding school that i used to be best friends with but that I've lost touch with over the last 10 years. They and their guests combined with immediate family would put the number at 16-20 people from my side, but I'd still prefer to elope just the two of us + closest friends and their partners given a willing fiancee. It's amazing how quickly the number of people gets up to 50 or more so it's easy to see how costs can spiral out of control.
What gdl says about cost being relative is true for all things though.