Open Thread

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This open thread is your space to use as you like. We invite you to discuss current and traditional etiquette. Feel free to ask questions of each other and the community moderators here.


  1. Dana

    I’m attending a late in life wedding this weekend and in lieu of gifts donations are requested. Is it proper to include the check in the wedding card? Or should the check be sent directly to the charity?

    • Elizabeth

      I think you can do it either way. If they have given you the contact information for the charity, or you feel comfortable looking it up on your own, they it would probably be easier for all involved if you sent it directly to the charity, making sure that the donation is notated with “in celebration of the wedding of Mark and Jane Smith.” For the wedding, then, you should simply give the couple a card and note in it that $xxx has been donated in their name to Charity Z.”

  2. Liz

    I’m preparing our wedding program for our August wedding. I’m not listing any titles (Mr., Mrs., Dr., etc.); however, my mom thought the doctor needed some recognition. The doctor is the grooms father. If I’m not listing any titles in the program, should a doctor be called out? And, if so how should it read: Dr. Jon Smith and Jane? My parents would read: Mary and James Johnson.

    • Elizabeth

      If you’re not using titles, then that would go for everyone. Or, I suppose you could do Dr. John and Jane Smith.

  3. liz

    I was a guest at my long time friend’s beach cabin. I brought my book and swimsuit and assumed we would sit by the water a bit at the beach. She doesn’t like to do that so I sat by myself for awhile, but really like the company more then the activity so went and hung out with her.
    I teased her later that she didn’t get in her swim suit and sit by the beach on our beach vacation and she said I was a princess for complaining that we didn’t do what I like to do as her guest, and that It was not very gracious to bring it up.
    I apologized, but feeling wounded to be called a princess.

    • Jody

      It wasn’t very nice of your friend to call you a “princess” in this manner but it also depends on her tone of voice — was it light and intended to be a joke or was she serious? In any case, a gracious host will do things that her guest wants to do, and a gracious guest will not impose her schedule on the host (even though you did so politely). Sounds like there was a bit of fault on both sides in this case.

  4. Bryan

    I have been invited to a wedding reception as the couple has already been married overseas and are just having the reception as a celebration. What is the gift etiquette in this circumstance? There isn’t a registry listed on the invitation.

    • Winifred Rosenburg

      Calling it a wedding reception is not correct because receptions happen very shortly after the ceremony. You have actually been invited to a party honoring the newlyweds. (I’m not blaming you for this. I’m just pointing it out to give the right perspective.) Because you were not invited to the wedding, you are not required to give a gift. However giving a gift shows you care so if you would like to show you care you may want to give a gift.

    • Elizabeth

      Personally, I would give a gift as if this was a wedding reception. You can ask the bride or groom (or their parents) where they are registered. It is actually improper to include this information in the invitation. if you want to know, just ask.

  5. Beth

    We are planning a Gala and while planning a very prominent committee chair passed away. Do we leave her name on the committee or take it off? We don’t want to exhibit bad taste or hurt the feelings of her family and friends.

    • Alicia

      I would think the timing would be part of this. Is it right before the event or a year before she passed? How much of the planning did she do? Would she have wanted her name to remain or not? I think it is variable.

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