Grandma not coming to wedding.

posted 1 year ago in Destination Weddings
Post # 16
Member
14030 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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Anonymous1063 :  That was unfortunate, but I didn’t need anyone to tell me that our wedding should accomodate the grandparents with limitations if I wanted the very best chance for them to attend.

It sounds like either OP’s mom thought there was a chance but did not place a very high priority on the grandmother’s attendance or it’s since become very clear that she’s in no position to go. Either way if this was so important to OP, it should have been common sense to insist it be held locally. 

Post # 17
Member
1026 posts
Bumble bee

My maternal grandmother had dementia. Living several streets away, I not only watched her deterioration, I watched my parents, especially my mother, struggle with taking care of her (I was a single mother with two small kids at the time and helped when I could). Even early on, taking care of her began to be like corralling a small child and it was stressful and exhausting for my mother. My grandmother was no longer the woman we had known for years and taking care of her was demanding.

Having been through that, I empathize with your mother, honestly.  Her daughter is getting married – hopefully a once in a lifetime thing. I’m sure she would like to be present and experience the wedding of her child – not spend her time taking care of someone else (and yes, change of scenery can be agitating and confusing to those with dementia – which means your grandma’s behavior might be more difficult than usual). Life is. People get sick, people deteriorate. People have limits. Dementia is a horrible, cruel condition. Please don’t be angry at your mother for wanting to enjoy the wedding of her daughter and wanting a break from caregiving. 

Post # 18
Member
3422 posts
Sugar bee

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psyche1978 :  “Please don’t be angry at your mother for wanting to enjoy the wedding of her daughter and wanting a break from caregiving.” 

Exactly. Great advice that the OP would do well to follow.

Post # 19
Member
1089 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

I found out about an hour before the ceremony that my 102-year-old great aunt would not be able to come to the wedding — and that was with a nurse/caretaker arranged to bring her. Our wedding was only about an hour away from where she lives, but she lives in an assisted living facility with very fragile health, and had not been feeling well that day.

All my grandparents passed away by the time I was 13, so she is like a grandmother to me, and I spent the time before my ceremony having a good cry over her not being there… but then I was able to move on and enjoy the day.

I think maybe it just genuinely is going to be too much for her. Like I said, even with a caretaker arranged, my great aunt couldn’t make it. Things happen, especially when people are old and their health is fragile. I don’t think it’s that your grandmother doesn’t want to come or even that your mom doesn’t want to bring her — I just think they’re realizing it’s gonna be too much for her. And that really sucks. Trust me, I get it 🙁

Post # 20
Member
123 posts
Blushing bee

I don’t really have any specific advice but some empathy. My grandmother has to miss my wedding too because of the long distance and it’s difficult to know she won’t be there. We are having a family party close to her residence after the wedding and I’m going to wear my wedding dress again for her because she just really wants to see me in it. 

Post # 21
Member
511 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2019

My grandparents are long gone but I was also disappointed that my husband’s grandma could not come to the wedding. Going into the wedding planning, her presence was one of my highest priorities, and similar to your situation, we were also assured that family would be able to bring her to our venue. When we got closer to the day, though, it was apparent that much of the family did not think it a good idea, based on her health (and she is in very good health for being almost 90!) While I was disappointed, I realized quickly I could never fogive myself if she did attend and something bad happened. A wedding is a long day and I am sure it would have put a lot of strain on her. So, we did the next best thing and FaceTimed with her during the reception so she could see the venue, guests, etc. 

Post # 22
Member
9254 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

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docinlove484 :  “I get it that it’d be more work for my mom, but also feel like she’s blowing the excuses as to why my grandma can’t come out of proportion so she can get out of bringing her.” — Your disappointment is understandable, but the annoyance or resentment towards your mom is not. Until you have driven a 90-year-old with dementia and arthritis 7 hours roundtrip with a 6-12 hour party in between, you have no idea how much work it is and no right to call it an excuse or say she’s blowing it out of proportion.

Your wedding is ~4 months away. That’s plenty of time for you to plan a nice grandma-grandaughter day. Pick somewhere 3.5 hours away, drive grandma there, spend a few hours doing something pleasant together, and drive her back. Then evaluate whether it’s reasonable to expect your mom to do this on your wedding day, and whether she’s likely to enjoy your wedding and look back on it fondly or whether all she’ll remember is stress and worry. 

Post # 23
Member
2062 posts
Buzzing bee

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docinlove484 :  I went through similar. My grandma is in good health but at the time she was caring for my grandfather who had dementia (sadly, he just passed this week). She was unable to make the trip to my destination wedding. Even though I completely understood and was sort of expecting it, privately I was just heartbroken because she’s so important to me. Of course I wasn’t upset with her at all. It’s just that I have a special relationship with her and she’s probably made the biggest impact out of anyone in my life, and I never dreamed she wouldn’t be able to be there. I won’t lie, it was hard. But I spent lots of time with her on the phone discussing my wedding plans, I talked to her about it afterward, and I sent her pictures soon after. Sometimes these things happen. 

Post # 24
Member
14030 posts
Honey Beekeeper

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psyche1978 :   

“Please don’t be angry at your mother for wanting to enjoy the wedding of her daughter and wanting a break from caregiving.”

I completely agree with this in theory, but if it would have been much more feasible locally, I still say that is something that should have been considered by everyone involved.  

I would think OP’s mom would have given her a heads up if having her at the wedding was likely to be problematic regardless of venue. Of course it’s possible she’s deteriorated very recently and it wouldn’t have mattered where the wedding was. Or that her mom didn’t really think it all through. 

One issue I’m not sure has been addressed is how it came about that fiance’s wish not to be in that city superseded OP’s valid concerns about her grandmother. 

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