Time to toss one of my own issues into the pot... long story, cliffs below: It's come down to a situation where I'm ready to move on to the next level with my girlfriend. We're in the early stages...I've yet to do the whole drop-knee thing with an engagement ring, but she's already aware that I intend to ask her sometime soon. So...being the excited bride-to-be she is, she's already started to play around with ideas about what our wedding may be like. Now I'm no stranger to this process. I've seen enough of my friends go through the situation where the couple agrees to do something "small" for their wedding...the guy's idea of "small" is to have just immediate family and a couple friends there. The girl's idea of "small" is "oh...I just need no more then 150 people there". More often then not the guy ends up giving in and they've spent thousands on their wedding. I have friends that ended up in debt for the first 2 or 3 years of their marriage because they spent in excess of $20k - $40k for their wedding So...that's what's happening here. While I can understand it might be a fulfillment of a woman's dream to have an elaborate wedding with a lot of guests, I just simply want to avoid being in debt that I struggled so hard to get out of over the past few years. Not to mention I'm depending on my new business...while from time to time, I may have months where I'm rolling in what seems like a lot of money, there are other times where that money can disappear fast when there are slow periods. My reluctance to go on a crazy spending spree for a wedding isn't because I'm a cheap ass...but I'm looking out for our future together where I don't want to be the loser with a stuggling business, no way to improve our living conditions, and no way to support any children we might have in the near future. Also, money isn't the issue. If I'm going to spend money, I'd rather spend it on her. Perhaps be able to buy her a nicer ring, fancier gown, or even plan a more elaborate honeymoon. To me, spending money on guests that would rather be somewhere else anyway is just a waste. I've expressed my point of view to her, and while she's not the type to argue and force her way on me about this issue, I can feel the dissapointment in her voice, if our wedding were not to turn out the way she imagined with her entire extended family there and a big celebration. It just makes me feel like such an ass for even mentioning it even though she isn't saying it. She's nice enough to tell me "Let's think about it" and tell me not to think about it. But just knowing this issue might be challenged again later on makes me pretty stressed about the whole affair. So please tell me ladies....what is it about a big wedding that could make an otherwise sensible & frugal woman even contemplate the idea of putting us in potential debt just because she wants to make everyone in her family happy? CLIFFS: Thinking ahead about marriage plans. Fiance wants to have a big wedding, but I would rather not have that. It's giving me anxiety & some unnecessary stress.