Post # 1
So this is my first post and I hate it to be of this kind….
So my parents got divorced 6 years ago. My dad was ordered to pay spousal support but shortly after he lost his job. My dad has a drinking and money problem (part of the reason they got divorced). He has held a few short jobs but he thinks he is above them all. So now he hasn’t paid spousal support in 4 years. My parents went to court this week, and my mom was given the option to put him in prison for 6 months! She said yes! Now I am very close with my mom, and understand her point, my dad needs to pick his life up, but at some point give it up. But I am getting married in 7 months. Now my dad won’t be at engagement party, and my mom isn’t really welcome there because it is my dad’s sisters house. My shower will be a mess, and I am terrified about drama at the wedding. And my moms family is mad at her too they don’t agree. Is my mom being selfish about this? I am already so stressed with planning, work, etc this just puts me into nervous breakdown territory.
My FILs are paying for most of the wedding and my mom has been somewhat ungrateful about it. She hasn’t really thanked them. She is paying a very small amount when I know she can save more she just wants to shop! She had the nerve to tell me today (or first time talking after my dad going to jail) that I should elope to avoid the drama, and I shouldn’t have a engagement party. I think she just wants to avoid the drama. Why should I not have my special day. i have never asked fo anything. And I am now thinking about things over the years, and am realizing that everything is always about her (my brother has always said this). Any thoughts or suggestions on what I should do?
Post # 3
@Macintoshpeony: I know this is hard, but your mother has her own life to lead. If your dad deserves to go to jail then he should go to jail, regardless of whether there is an engagement party to attend. No, I do not think your mom is being selfish for exercising this option (of sending your dad to jail).
If your mother talks of eloping again, say something along the lines of, “Well everyone else wants to see us get married, so we’re not eloping”. If she threatens to not attend, call her bluff, i.e. say you’re doing the wedding as planned anyway. Assuming she attends the wedding, ensure people who don’t get along are seated well apart.
Post # 4
No, I don’t think your mom should “just give up” her legal right to support just so your dad could attend your engagement party. (FYI, the only way to get through to most addicts is to hold them accountable for their actions. Al-Anon 101.)
No, I don’t think your mom owes your FILs any gratitude for paying for your wedding.(It’s your wedding, not hers.)
No, I don’t think your mom should curtail her shopping because that way she could pay for more of your wedding. (See above.)
No, I don’t think you should cancel the wedding and elope as your mom suggested. (See above.)
No, I don’t think you should keep discussing the wedding with her.
Yes, I do think you should put extra care into the seating chart.
Post # 5
@geekspice: All of this.
I think you’re annoyed at the wrong person here. He had the choice to pay her or not. He knew jail time was a possibility. Don’t be annoyed with her because she is insisting he follow a court order. Be annoyed with him for refusing to do what he’s supposed to do.
Post # 6
I agree with everything geekspice said. If your FIL’s are helping pay for your wedding it is up to you and FI to thank them, not your mom. It isn’t anyone’s job to pay for your wedding but yours (unless someone offers).
Your mom has gone a very long time without the support your Dad was ordered to pay – why should she not hold him accountable? Because it doesn’t time out well with prewedding parties? Your father could have stepped up to the plate and taken care of this, but he chose not to. Alcoholism is rampant in my immediate family so I know the toll it takes.
Stop talking to family members about it and let it go. She had every right to do this and your father is accountable and responsible for him being in jail, not mom.
Post # 7
You are all right and I have been putting the blame anger towards him, but just had to vent a little and feel better now, thanks 🙂 I think I just need a little family distance for a week or two
Post # 8
Sometimes a really good vent can help get things out and clear your mind. Remember – NO ONE can ruin any party or event you have for your wedding unless you allow it. If someone tries to start something you have to CHOOSE to rise above it and not let someone else’s actions ruin your mood. Having alcoholism in your family truly sucks. If you have Al-Anon (for family and friends) I really encourage you to attend some meetings and get some support. It can do wonders!
Post # 9
I am going to agree with everyone else. The person responsible for your dad being in jail is your dad. As to everything being about her, am I right that she raised you without child support? Are you crazy? YOU should thank your inlaws, not her.
Post # 10
Everything geekspace said. And I get it, my parent’s cant contribute either. But it’s my wedding, not theirs.
Post # 11
Oh, and many hugs. I have been in your shoes on more situations than I will post on here.
Post # 12
i agree i agree i agree
people go to jail for not paying child support,he shouldnt get a free pass,maybe it will sober him up and give him time to think over his life choices with a clear head
Post # 14
I feel bad that your dad is in jail and will not be there for your engagement party. Will he be there for the wedding? I hope so! While it is his fault, I think that your mom could have been a little bit nicer about it and realized how stressed the situation is going to make you during the time leading up to your wedding. It is not exactly up to your mom how happy you are, but she does sound like she is being a little selfish here. I understand he did break the rules, but why did she not try to have him jailed sooner then? Why did she not try to get him help years ago? And also, why was he still expected to pay her money after he lost his job? I’m guessing he was laid off because it was a few years ago when all the lay-offs happened so that’s not cool, either.
*hugs* I hope everything works out for you.
Post # 15
Thanks for the support. The latest now, is that my mom is charging him with another count, so he might have to go to jail for another 6 months (year total!) and miss the wedding, which is just awful. I understand that he needs to pay, but it is tough. He was a great father for 25+ years took very good care of us and we had more then we can ever dreamed of, then he hit a hard time as much people did a few years ago, and my mom just bailed without trying to help. It is hard being in your 60s without a job, so he turned to drinking more. Her whole family and my dad’s whole family are trying to get my dad out and hiring lawyers to see what they can do. Thankfully my FH is being the best during this and being supportive everyday. We have yet to tell his family what is going on, I just want to get the full story when he goes back to court on Thursday, before I get them all concerned. When it all comes down to it, I just want my dad at my wedding 🙂