(Closed) How to tell a family member their special needs daughter is not invited…

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
  • poll: How would you handle this?
    Sit down and talk with her. : (80 votes)
    53 %
    Send one invite to her&husband, then a second invite to her other kids. : (2 votes)
    1 %
    Other. (Explain!) : (70 votes)
    46 %
  • Post # 47
    1733 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2012

    please don’t either all or none.

    Post # 48
    719 posts
    Busy bee

    I agree with those who say you need to invite all of the kids or none of them. We had a similar situation at our wedding where one of our guests who has special needs was allowed by his mother to run wild at the reception.  I had been assured he would be taken home if he got out of control and he was allowed to stay until the last minute.  He also had to be allowed to walk in with the bridal party when they were announced or he would have had a melt down.  He ended up in many of thep pictures that he didn’t belong in becasue his mother basically shrugged and walked away because she didn’t want to deal with his behavior.   I am still having a hard time letting go of how his behavior impacted our reception and I will have the pictures to remind me of it forever.   I can understand your concerns, but I think just inviting the 3 kids will cause even bigger problems.  

    Post # 49
    663 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: June 2017 - Vegas Wedings

    Im going to play the other side becuase I see 3 individuals in this situation who need an advocate.

    People are saying it either all or nothing with the 4 children. To me this sounds very unfair to the 3 non- special needs children. They wont be allowed to go to a wedding because of their siblings possible behavior? How is that remotely fair to them? They could be lovely children who would truly enjoy the event and be a blessing but they cant go because of their sister. This is tragic.

    Post # 50
    2107 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2012

    @Beautiful Bluegrass:  I get what you’re saying, and you’re absolutely right, because the other three kids are probably always having to deal with their sibling’s disability.  Unfortunately, there is no easy way to exclude just one member of a family.  I agree with PP’s, and think that the best solution is to either invite all four siblings, or none. 

    Post # 51
    923 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: January 2013

    Another thing that has to be taken into consideration is if are you inviting other nieces/nephews/cousins.  If you are, then your fiance’s sister is going to wonder why her children were not invited.  As the other posters have said, you can’t invite 3 out of the 4.  

    I don’t envy you.  This is a nightmare from a family politics standpoint.  This is not just some random guest.  This is a group of people who you see quite often and will continue to have connections with for the forseeable future.  I hate to say it, but you may have to suck it up and invite all four children and hope that the parents have the sense to know what to do with the special needs daughter. 

    Post # 52
    3771 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: December 1999

    I agree with PPs that you really should do all or none.

    Can I ask something. This is your FI’s niece you are talking about, correct? How is his relationship with his sister and/or his mom. Is there anyway that he could talk to her and ask how she feels the niece would handle the wedding before you make any decisions. I mean this is his sister, not just a family friend do they not talk about how she is doing regularly?

    Post # 53
    9916 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: June 2013

    Just invite all the kids.  Have your fiance talk to the mother and voice your concerns, but it’s not going to go over well unless he voices the concern as if it’s for the daughter, not for your precious day.  

    Post # 54
    50 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: February 2013

     I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that her parents are wise enough to know when to bring her and when to leave her home. I have a friend who’s son has neurological problems as well as ADHD and Oppositional Defiance Disorder and when I mentioned inviting her family to the wedding she said point blank she wasn’t sure she would bring him. They want to enjoy the event too. So invite them all. I am almost positive that they will be sensible enough to leave her home. You could even chat with them about it casually and state that you didn’t want to be rude but at the same time if they would prefer not to bring her daughter you would help her find arrangements for care. It sounds like you are close enough to talk about it with them

    Post # 55
    6040 posts
    Bee Keeper
    • Wedding: October 2019 - City, State

    @JoJoDahling:  I do not have a special needs child. I am a mother though. I can tell you that I would be pretty hurt to have someone that is close to my family sit me down and tell me that me and my other children and husband area invited but one of my kids isn’t. Special needs or not. I can understand your concerns but I think that it’s not going to go over well to invite every member of their family except the daughter. Plus, what are they going to do with her for the night even if they did choose to still come and leave her out?it would be better to invite them all and sit down and discuss your concerns about her behavior and whatnot and just talk about options for the day of to handle it the best way you can. If that is not an option, I suggest you invite only the parents. Im sorry OP, this seems like a very tricky situation, but as a parent I just do not think this will go over well. Its got to be all or none when it comes to their kids IMO.

    Post # 56
    8882 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper

    I understand where you are coming from, but if I received the invite for all my children except for 1 (regardless of special needs or not) I would be upset. 

    If the wedding is for close family and friends only, just invite the parents.  Don’t invite 3/4 children and single one out.

    Post # 57
    2555 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: May 2014

    Sorry, I think you’ve got to invite all the kids or none at all.  You can’t just exclude one of their children, special needs or not.  That’s rude.

    Post # 58
    2334 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: November 2012

    I’m honestly shocked by your suggestion of excluding a child just because they have a disability.  I would end my relationship with the bride and groom if I ever got an invitation like that.

    Please invite just the parents OR the entire family.  It is the parent’s decision on how to parent their own child…if you don’t think they’ll make a decision you are happy with, just invite the parents only.

    Post # 59
    4047 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: January 2014

    All or none. You cannot leave out just one family member, no matter who it is. If I were the parent or the other sibling, I would be offended. It’s discrimination based on a disability.

    Invite the whole family. Sit down with the parents and ask how you can help make the day go smoothly for their daughter with special needs. They may choose not to bring her, but you are not the one who should choose for them.

    Or make it a kid-free wedding altogether.

    Post # 60
    2285 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: Central Park

    The only tactful way to do this is to have an across the board no kids policy.

    Post # 61
    469 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: July 2013

    If I got an invite that excluded only my child who had special needs and not the other “normal” children, I would be very quick to put you in your place and not go myself and to be honest, I think it would burn a bridge. Family is family, need/disability/struggle…is this child loved any less because of having special needs? I sure hope not. I understand that you are not close with her and are with other three however people with special needs are surprisingly receptive to human emotion and empathy. Therefore, I’m going to bet that this person will be very hurt if they find out that they are the only one who is not included. I get that you want your wedding day to be perfect, but doesnt ‘perfect’ mean having all your family and friends there to witness your day? 

    I get that you are trying to be sensitive but I am put off by this post. I think that if you invite the other 3 then you have to invite the other one. This is a human we are talking about. 

    Basically, IMO, if you want to seem like you are accepting of all people no matter their situation/abilities, the only thing you can do is invite everyone. I would ask the mother if she is planning on bringing this child and then go on to ask how YOU can better accomodate for this child and their needs. If this were me, I would take it upon myself to make sure that I can help this person feel included and accomodated for if they choose to join in on that day. You did not say the specific special need but accomodations could include a more welcoming seating arrangement, maybe an area/room that this person can feel free to use that is not over stimulating so they can chill out for a little bit if they are having strong urges, etc. Tread lightly because this is a touchy subject and you will seem very offensive if you invite all but the one person who has special needs. 

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