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How to handle an obnoxious wedding guest

The simplest way to handle an obnoxious wedding guest is don’t invite her. Or him. Sadly, that’s not always possible. You know how family relationships can be! Your parents may insist that you invite ‘cousin Penelope’ even though she is the most obnoxious person you know. Just watch the Saturday Night Live skit below to see what we mean!

Kristen Wiig’s “Penelope” is hysterical. Most of us have been in the same, unpleasant situation as poor Taylor Swift at some point in our life.

Fortunately, most obnoxious wedding guests aren’t going to be as challenging as an SNL character. Nonetheless, you may desire that guests honor certain wedding traditions, standards and protocols, beginning with attire.

Spell out your attire preferences

You have several ways to communicate dress code for your wedding. The more formal your affair, the more formal your invitation should look. Makes sense. State preferences on an enclosure in your invitation, not on the invitation itself, and be direct. Let them know if your affair is formal, semi-formal, business casual, casual or something else.

Use your website and word-of-mouth to spread the word and clarify what you mean by “semi-formal.”

On the day of your wedding itself, the most common issue couples have with attendees is the obnoxious wedding guest who wants to dominate the bride or groom’s (or both!) attention. This can get tricky. You need to be diplomatic.

You have two techniques to control the time demands on you. The easiest is to simply say something like this:

“It is so much fun catching up with you. I look forward do it again when we have more time, but other guests are waiting! You know how that goes! Thanks again for being here. It means a lot to me.”

Try the ‘hand-off’ if you’re desperate

That’s all it takes with most guests. They understand how weddings work. On rare occasion, you’ll encounter a guest who sticks to you like glue and misses all of your cues. In those cases, you need to have an extraction strategy which allows you to gracefully slip away. The best approach is the ‘hand-off.’ Turn to a nearby guest and introduce them your ‘sticky’ guest, mention something they have in common, and move on. Don’t look back.

It might go something like this:

“Mrs. Smith, I have someone you might like to meet. This is my cousin Penelope! Her dad is an attorney at the firm where your God daughter’s great uncle used to be the janitor back in 1977. I bet you two will have a lot of catching up to do! In the meantime, I desperately need to powder my nose!”

Well, I’m being a little silly, but you get the idea.

Hopefully you don’t have a ‘Penelope’ at your Alabama wedding. But if you do, here’s another solution: go with DJ Brian Anderson for your wedding entertainment. We specialize in packing the dance floor and creating fun wedding receptions. The ‘Penelope’ in your life will be so busy dancing, you’ll barely know she’s there!