Post # 1
I am the divorced/ remarried, minister, father of a “to-be” groom, who’s mother has decided to host the rehersal dinner at her (our) old house. My wife & I would be very uncomfortable there, but our son has requested that we attend…even after we explained wht we would not be there. Help?? What should we do?
Post # 3
I think, for the sake of your son and his soon to be wife, you need to put your discomfort aside and go. The rehearsal dinner is a chance for a bride & groom to spend a bit more quality time with those who are most important in their lives before the wedding. You are his father and I imagine he would be hurt if you were not there.
Post # 4
Well, it’s his wedding… maybe just suck it up and be cordial? It’s one evening, and I’m sure it would mean the world to him. If you make it uncomfortable for you, it will be… if you realize it is what it is, then you can make the best of it!
Post # 5
I think that you should just go to the rehearsal. Several members of my family don’t get along very well and it’s very depressing for me that they can’t all grow up and be polite to each other for a few days.
I understand that you will be uncomfortable but would it really be that bad to be in that house for just a few hours? Do it for your son!
Post # 6
I agree this is a one time event in your son’s life and should attend and remember it is only one night.
Post # 7
JC, I have to take the stance of your son. As the child, it is very important that both of your parents be there for every step of your wedding. My father is not very involved in our (the children) lives but you better believe he better make time to be at every wedding event there will be. 🙂 I totally understand how uncomfortable it would be. This is also my 2nd marriage and have two boys with my ex-husband. There will be uncomfortble times. One example…I stayed in touch with my ex’s family and my ex-sil wanted us (me and fiance included) to attend her graduation party. Although we would both be very uncomfortable, my FH especially being my ex-husband’s family, we thought long and hard and decided to go. It was a special day in her life and one that we didn’t want to regret missing or sharing with her. Luckily, for us, everything turned out just fine and our plan to stay for a little bit and make a graceful escape was not even needed. Of course, her brother (my ex) did not show up anyway, but it was still akward being around his family again.
I hate to say this, but without knowing to much of your background with the ex, I have to say that you and your wife need to suck it up and attend and then try to come up with your graceful exit/escape. Its a few hours compared to your son’s hapiness.
Post # 8
Ditto what everyone else said. It’ll be awkward, but what divorced/remarried/etc family situation isn’t? Everyone’s attention will be on your son and his bride to be, not the relationship that used to be.
Post # 9
I’m sure it’s going to be a bit awkward for you, but the best thing you can do is go. It obviously means something to your son for you to be there. I’m sure he would really appreciate you being there, especially if you (and your ex-wife) can just be as cordial and polite as you can to one another. I’m sure it will mean a lot to your son to have both his parents there, celebrating his special day.
Post # 10
I think this is a case where you (as the father) need to be the big kid in the relationship. I’m sure it will be uncomfortable for you, your new wife and your ex-wife… but if your ex is being kind enough to extend the invitation, I’m sure she is going to be nothing but cordial… as you should be too.
This stuff is already hard enough for kids of divorce. So anything you can do to minimize the drama is great!
Post # 11
Well, it depends on how uncomfortable and awkward it’s going to be! I was in this situation….my husband’s parents are divorced and his father is remarried, with six little kids too. We invited them to the rehearsal dinner, but they did not attend. Everyone understood that this was the best choice. There is major bad blood between the father and the rest of the family, they would have been the only representatives of that part of the family there (no other dad’s side relatives were coming, so they would have had no one else to talk to except us), and they did not want to have to deal with entertaining the kids, several of whom are very young. At the wedding itself however, everyone ignored each other quite happily. There were also many more people present and more space for the kids.
Whether you go depends on a lot of factors. How many people are you going to be uncomfortable to see there? How many people will you be happy to see there? How many people will there be there period, so as to hide amongst them? Is the price you will pay for going just you being uncomfortable, or do you fear that someone else might start a scene?
Would it be possible for you (perhaps without your wife) to put in an appearance at the rehearsal dinner but not to stay long? I would try to find a way that you can go to the rehearsal dinner. My husbands parents hate each other with passion and even they got through both their children’s wedding days without showing us it was any trouble. That meant a lot to us. I think it will be not so bad as you think, and it will mean a lot to your son. Good luck!
Post # 12
I think not going would put a strain on your relationship with your son. I come from a divorced home & if my parents couldn’t get over their discomfort for one weekend– I’d be upset. It’s one day…
When it comes to split families, quite often we’re put into uncomfortable situations, but it doesn’t mean we can avoid them. Everyone is an adult… lets just hope (and pray!) that everyone acts accordingly!
Best of luck 🙂
Post # 13
You just….go. You be there because it’s important to your son.
You’re remarried. You’ve moved on. Presumably so has your ex-wife. What are you going to do when your ex-wife hosts your first grandchild’s basptism? First Birthday? If you set this precedent with yourself, your wife AND your ex-wife you will never be able to celebrate the milestones in your son’s life.
Be the bigger person. Show up. Bring a bottle of wine. Thank your ex-wife for hosting the party. Be Gracious. Be a Father.
(sidenote: if there are people from your wife’s side who will be less than cordial to you, ignore them. my mother in law dealt with some not so nice comments from her ex’s side of the family at our engagement party and she laughed if off for our sake. it was much appreciated)
Post # 14
I’m really glad you are writing in for a second opinion! 🙂 I understand that being in your old house and seeing your ex will be difficult and awkward, but it’s the right thing to do for your son. As a child of separated parents, weddings are already so difficult because it highlights the fact that your family is split– how to word the invitations, not putting out your parents’ old wedding photos, who to sit where, etc. While it sounds like you have made the right decision for yourself and moved forward (which is wonderful!), please realize it is likely still difficult for your son. A wedding is the one opportunity for both you and your ex to be proud and happy for your son– and being absent at the dinner sends out all the wrong messages.
So, my recommendation is to hold your current wife’s hand tightly and put on a brave face. Meet any negativity by redirecting the focus on how proud you are of your son. By the fact your son is putting himself out there enough to ask, I am sure this will mean the world to him.
Post # 15
go but don’t stay for a huge amount of time maybe just an hour or so.
Post # 16
I am also divorced and am able for the sake of my son (he’s 10) to endure sitting through graduations, church events, and school events for the sake of my son.
It is time to put any differences aside and put your son first. You’re a minister! This is what we’re to do with everybody! What’s the anacronism I learned in sunday school? J.O.Y. ! That’s the way to treat everybody!
Wishing you and your family a wonderful wedding and for bridges and fences to be healed and mended thru love!