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Wedding Invitation from an Infertile Couple: Keep the Gift. Just Send Cash

a blog by Lori Shandle-Fox, February 7, 2013

Frequently when I read infertility forums I put in my two cents. So, this one woman posed the question last week:

"Is it okay to write on your wedding invitations that you would rather guests give donations to assist with your fertility treatment expenses instead of your usual wedding registry gifts?"

(As we enter head first into the issue of wedding invitations, I feel I must issue a small disclaimer: My wedding invitation, penned by me, honest to Gd began thusly:

"Mr. Jerome Shandle cordially invites you to the long awaited unloading of his daughter, Lori Allison..." I then proceeded in elegant engraved calligraphy to apologize for having the nuptials on a Sunday in the autumn, thus preempting football and that I, the bride, was probably the most miffed about it...(This only proves that a smartass is a smartass is a smartass and that she can't curtail her tendencies to be a smartass just because it's the most important day of her life.)

So I'm all for wedding invitees throwing cash at you instead of some dopey whatchamacallit they picked up (or found in their hall closet) at the last minute.

I just think that due to the sensitive nature of the subject, the invitations have to be done in a sensitive way. Here are some suggestions:

"Mr. and Mrs. James Smith cordially invite you to the wedding of their daughter, Melissa Susan... The couple asks if you would consider a cash donation to them in support of their efforts to conceive. Despite rumors, this is not a cheap ploy to avoid us getting back the cheese slicer that we bought for someone's anniversary six years ago and which has been circulating around the relatives via housewarming parties, birthdays, and weddings ever since. Although we do adamantly believe the cheese slicer madness must end! We as a family must come together to break the vicious cheese slicer cycle which has plagued us all for the better part of a decade!"

"...Our children would like to suggest that a donation be given to help defray the hefty costs of an egg/sperm donor or if necessary, an adoption. We assure you: The fact that they are seeking funds to support efforts which will almost guarantee their children have absolutely zero DNA in common with any of you is purely coincidental."

"Some of you may have heard that we may be in need of a sperm donor. Please keep in mind that at this time--- As far as wedding gifts go... We are only requesting cash. Refrigerators at the reception are strictly for buffet items only."

**And please, cousin Jeff... we graciously ask that in lieu of a monetary gift, neither you nor your mother offers your services as a medical professional. We all know you're a doctor. If our fertility specialist does not work out and we decide to seek alternative options, we promise you and your mother that podiatry will be among those considered.

And to close the invitations on a positive note perhaps try:

"Besides knowing that you will be a valuable part of our family-building efforts, you also should be pleased to know that if you give us money, the chances that your gift will be re-gifted are extremely slim."

(The sister post to this one is now playing at my Laughing IS Conceivable blog)

Comments (2)

Great suggestions. I'd say the way you ask depends on the personality types of your friends and family. You could also start a fertility registry and only point them in that direction. No Macy's, No Crate&Barrel, just Mission:Baby. I've seen this done for honeymoon money. It worked. I also had more fun sponsoring the couple's massage, first dinner and three rounds of pins coladas on the beach (all items on the cash collecting registry, just to make it fun).

Oh my heavens that was hysterical to read. I love the note to Jeff! And the reference to the refrigerators. Too funny. Sad though that people have to resort to this to conceive. I wish treatments were covered by insurance.

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