Post # 1
Long story short – my Fiance has 4 siblings, 3 of them have kids. He is not close to his younger sister (who has 3 kids) because he doesn’t approve of her parenting style. She moved, with her children, halfway across the country from our hometown. He never talks to her. Recently she moved back to our hometown, but didn’t even tell him. She is flakey and often won’t come to family functions because she is in a disagreement with another sibling. I’ve only met her and her kids a few times.
We asked his other nieces and nephew to be in the wedding (jr. bridesmaid, flower girl and ring bearer). We are having a small short ceremony. Now the oldest of the other sister’s kids (pre-teen) called us to ask why she isn’t in the wedding. He asked to talk to her mom (his sister) and explained the reasons why he didn’t ask her kids. I’m sorry the kids are upset, but we honestly didn’t even know if they would come to the wedding when we planned our wedding party (it’s expensive travel and we know they don’t have a lot of money), plus we didn’t trust his sister to buy her dress, or to even show up. I know if give in to her, and ask his neice to be another jr. bridesmaid, then she will guilt us to find places in the wedding for her other two kids. We aren’t having a big wedding party and I don’t want to involve people out of guilt, but I also don’t want to hurt kids feelings and potentionally ruin the little relationship my fiance has with his niece.
Sorry this was so long – any one have advice, experience? Any ideas on how to make this all better?
Post # 3
Its your wedding. This is the day you get to do what you want. So do just that. Not what his sister wants you to do
Post # 4
I understand that the sister sucks but the kids are innocent, I wouldn’t want to hurt kids feelings. Inthink leaving her kids out may only make things worse. If youguys were ever hopeful to build a better relationship with her may would be a good start to be the better person and include her kids….
Post # 5
While I don’t think you should let the sister bully you, I also think it’s a shame that you aren’t closer to these kids because your Fiance doesn’t approve of her parenting style – which I’m sorry, but that’s really none of his business. And I’m sure the favoritism hurts the children, and like Amy said, the kids are innocent in this and I think that the right thing to do would be to try to build a relationship with them.
Post # 6
@Wonderstruck: I agree with this 100%.
Post # 7
That’s a dirty move by his sister – she could have easily taken care of that and explained to her daughter that’s it’s ok she wasn’t asked to be in the wedding. To let her call your Fiance and try to guilt-trip him was a mean thing to do to both your Fiance and his niece.
Personally, I wouldn’t let her bully you into doing what she wants, but now that she’s pulled her children into this (I can see why your Fiance disapproves of her parenting style), is there any way you can give them a small role? Handing out programs or bubbles/rice?
Post # 8
I should clarify what I mean by he doesn’t approve her parenting style – yes, it is none of his business but she has let harm come to her kids in the past and generally put them in unhealthy situations (authorities have been involved before). She won’t listen to anyone and when anyone disagrees with her, she uses her kids as a weapon – as in, you can’t see the kids unless you do what she wants. I hate that our refusal to give into her demands means we don’t have a relationship with them, and I realize the kids suffer, but I don’t know what else to do.
Post # 9
I agree with@hisgoosiegirl: It would be a good way to include the kids to give them small jobs, without having it making it something that could get out of hand if the mother flakes out. The kids won’t be completely left out that way, and the mom doesn’t get to manipulate the situation, or flake out.
Post # 10
I honestly wouldn’t worry about including them. This little girl probably had NO IDEA (nor did she probably care) that she wasn’t in your wedding. Her mother (your FSIL) is manipulative, obivously. I can guarantee she rubbed it into her daughter’s head about the other nieces being in the wedding and put her daughter up to calling your Fiance. If you make way for your FSIL’s kids, she’s likely to not even show up with them.
How does Fiance feel about this? Is he encouraging you to add his other niece, or is he just saying to forget about it?
Post # 11
I wouldn’t worry about it either. I have 35 cousins, yes 35 first cousins and I am the oldest. I chose 2 to be in the wedding because I am closest to them. It sucks that the other kids might have hurt feelings but it isn’t their fault that they aren’t close to you. This should be something that their parents should explain to them. It was in really poor taste of your FI’s sister to have their daughter call you about it, it puts you in a really awkward position. If you want to placate the situation, just have them give out programs. That way, they can wear whawt they want and if they don’t show it won’t be the end of the world. Hope this helps!
Post # 12
@Pinksapphire: Fiance says forget about it. He doesn’t like his sister or the way she is handling this situation.
The niece is ligit upset because she was with her cousin (the one in the wedding) this weekend and asking why she wasn’t in the wedding. But we do believe his sister made it into a bigger deal and then encouraged her daughter to call and ask him why.
I just told Fiance to call his niece and explain that he loves her and wants her at the wedding (FSIL told her she doesn’t have to go if she doesn’t want to). He’s going to tell her that we would like her to help in the wedding in another way and we’ll talk to her more about it when its closer. Hopefully that will keep relations civil, but I won’t be disappointed if they don’t show up.
Post # 13
It sucks that the SIL would put the kids in the middle. But I would stand your ground.