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by Abigail Van Buren

Expectant Mom Doesn't Expect Much From Father of Her Baby

DEAR ABBY: I am recently engaged and have started planning my wedding. The problem is, certain members of my family and my fiance's family bring extra people to events. We both come from large families and can't afford for each family member or friend of a family member to come to everything.

I have planned a breakfast and shopping day for a few female family members and close friends. Unfortunately, a few invitees are already trying to invite more people.

Is there a nice way to stop this from happening? Before planning anything, I worked very hard to decide whom I would like to attend, and why. I'm afraid if I don't nip this in the bud it will snowball by the time of my wedding. How does one politely explain to people that they are not planning the event -- they are guests? -- CONCERNED IN THOUSAND OAKS, CALIF.

DEAR CONCERNED: Be nonconfrontational and direct. Tell the offenders exactly what you have told me. Sometimes people do things without thinking them through, and the only antidote is to politely draw the line.