Is a skipped wedding really "friendship ending"? (General discussion + poll)

posted 5 months ago in Guests
  • poll: Responding "No" to a wedding invite is ...
    ... rude and unforgivable in ALL circumstances. Automatic relationship killer. : (1 votes)
    0 %
    ... v. frowned upon, but acceptable with a true extenuating circumstance (ex: pregnancy due date). : (19 votes)
    8 %
    ... a completely acceptable option for destination weddings, but not OK for local ones. : (17 votes)
    7 %
    ... neutral, could be ok or not depending on the closeness of relationship. : (89 votes)
    39 %
    ... totally fine for any reason. It's not a summons! : (96 votes)
    42 %
    OTHER / I'll post in the comments : (9 votes)
    4 %
  • Post # 61
    Member
    1603 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2019 - City, State

    beepboopbop :  I won’t say I wasn’t hurt initially, but he and I have talked about it since then and I understood and agreed it was for the best given the circumstances. We’re still good friends and speak regularly. I don’t consider wedding invites alone to be make or break for my friendships.

    Post # 62
    Member
    374 posts
    Helper bee

    Great thread! Like many others said, it really depends.

    In OP’s case of an casual college friend, I think it’s fine to say no and send a card/gift. Likewise for international / destination weddings, family/date conflicts, moving, pregnancy, illness, death in the family, cost (maybe) etc. Anything major.

    But I can’t imagine saying no to a close/best friend simply because you were going through a breakup or some other situation in which you’re feeling down – especially if you were supposed to be in the bridal party. This day is not about you, it’s about showing up and being happy for your close friend for 6-8 hours. Sorry but being sad that your {hypotheticals} Boyfriend or Best Friend cheated on you? Idk man, it really depends but that would be hard for me to understand. And honestly dressing up and attending a fun event making memories with friends might help you feel better, if only for one weekend. 

    Also, I err on the side of always giving information. I hate being left in the lurch wondering why and would extend the same courtesy to someone else if they were a close friend as to why I couldn’t come (within reason…you could also keep it vague like “I’m dealing with a death in the family right now”). For acquaintances this might not be necessary. 

    Post # 63
    Member
    542 posts
    Busy bee

    Skipping a wedding is only friendship ending if it was done in a very inconsiderate way. 

    If a friend accepted a wedding invitation and then just didn’t show up on my wedding, I would be deeply offended barring a serious emergency. It’s not fair to make couples pay for food and drink and then not show up. 

    OP, your situation is entirely different and your former friend is being unreasonable. 

    Post # 64
    Member
    1149 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    glutton :  yup I totally agree! You worded what I was trying to get at much better. I think it says a lot about a person if you can’t put aside your issues for ONE day of your close friend/family members big day to support them. Part of being a good friend is looking beyond yourself and supporting your friends. Also like you pointed out a casual friend is different but I would never be vague with a close friend and leave them wondering why isn’t my close friend attending one of the biggest days of my life. I was also shocked at the other poster who literally said they chose a bday party over their best friends wedding. A bday literally happens every year and a wedding is a once in a lifetime thing.

    Post # 65
    Member
    1603 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2019 - City, State

    soexcited123 :  You’ve honestly got to be joking at this point. Her grandfather’s 90th birthday also only happens once, and at that age sadly it’s never certain that there will be another one next year to celebrate with him. YOU picked the wedding date, if it was really that crucial for her to be there you could ask if she’s available- it’s not like birthdays are a surprise. Friends will have other things going on the same day as your wedding, and you have no right to say your wedding should be more important. As another poster put it – the earth revolves around the sun, not you. I can’t even imagine being so entitled as to think that any one of my friends, regardless of closeness, should prioritize my wedding over all else, or that I am the judge of what is an “acceptable” reason to not attend my wedding. 

    Post # 66
    Member
    2585 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: December 2017 - Courthouse

    I truly believe you should try your best to go a close family member or friend’s wedding. But days off work, budgeting and life get in the way. Why throw away a great friendship for one day!?

    However, I personally wouldn’t pay $770 just for me for a wedding of someone I barely still talk to. 

    Post # 67
    Member
    1580 posts
    Bumble bee

    soexcited123 :  maybe you are lucky and haven’t been through something so debilitating emotionally that the thought of devoting even 6 to 8 hours to a wedding alone can make you break down in despair. If so, great. But keep in mind that you’re viewing things from your perspective and you just don’t know what anyone may be going through at any given time and their decision not to spend a given day with you may have nothing to do with you or the friendship.

    After my miscarriage, I was a literal wreck. I would wake up crying at night. I had irrational crying at random times. I would be at work and need to close my office door at times to bawl my eyes out. I’m getting really uncomfortable now even thinking about what I went through and it’s been over a year.

    That said…

    I love my friend. But there was no way in hell that I had the emotional stability at that time to buy a ticket, pack a bag, put on a happy face and dance with joy at her wedding. 

    Post # 68
    Member
    1361 posts
    Bumble bee

    glutton :  It’s not for you to dictate how deeply other people experience their feelings. It’s not for you to say that being cheated on or going through a breakup isn’t a “serious enough” experience to warrant saying no to a wedding. We each process grief in our own ways; how dare you deny others the right to their own experience of their grief. 

    Post # 69
    Member
    374 posts
    Helper bee

    A wedding is literally half a day. One weekend tops if it’s out of state. You have the entire month/season/year, or however long you want, to grieve your breakup. Again it depends how close you feel to this friend, but I wouldn’t miss my best friend’s once in a lifetime special event if I could help it. Sorry but I guess we don’t see eye to eye on this one…and I’ve mostly been to weddings where I knew a group of people so I never really had the “scared to go dancing by myself” situation – maybe that’s my bad but still, no one said you have to dance or even that you have to attend the whole reception. Some brides are chill and wouldn’t care, but I personally would hope my friend could put aside her issues for one evening to be there for me as my best friend, especially if she was part of the bridal party.

    Again, exceptions for severe situations like family obligations, international travel, illness, emergencies, pregnancy, etc etc. but smaller stuff would be harder for me personally to justify. Sometimes showing up is 90% of being successful. Friendship means different things to different people – for me it means showing up 🤷🏻‍♀️ .   DeniseSecunda :  

    Post # 70
    Member
    2169 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: March 2017

    It depends. How far away does the person live? How much travel is involved? Can you get the time off work? How close is the relationship? 

    I’m probably going to miss a wedding that is later this summer. It is hard for me to get off work because I am at a new job. I’d have to fly to the wedding, rent a car, etc. I don’t have much money, either, because we moved recently. 

    I certainly try my best to go to a wedding if it is within about a 3 hour drive from home. Otherwise, it might just not happen. It’s nothing personal to the person getting married. I work every other weekend and it is sometimes challenging for me to switch a whole weekend with a coworker. 

    Post # 71
    Member
    1149 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: July 2019

    glutton :  Yup I’m with you in tbat my best friend is family to me and anything barring the extreme circumstances you described I would have been there and I was. Another bee pointed out that clearly I havent been through anything so my life must be wonderful well 2 weeks before her wedding my grandmom (who i grew up with her living right behind me so super close to her) passed away and not only did i still shown up to the wedding but I was also her Maid/Matron of Honor. I still stand by that a bday party is not as important as a wedding.

    Post # 72
    Member
    1603 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: May 2019 - City, State

    All I can say is, I am so glad that I have understanding and empathetic friends who are not so entitled as to judge whether my reasons for not being able to attend their wedding are worthy of continuing the friendship. And if one of them were to decide that me choosing to attend my grandmother’s 90th birthday party is unacceptable and their wedding should be more important, they are a crappy friend and I clearly made the right choice in not attending.

    Post # 73
    Member
    1391 posts
    Bumble bee

    Honestly it depends for me, because if my best friend didn’t attend my wedding and gave vague reasons like “I have stuff going on” I would assume, like another bee, that they were just making excuses and didn’t want to attend.

    Maybe this is a regional or cultural thing, but where I’m from it’s not really polite and acceptable to decline an invite to an important event for a close friend or family member without a good reason. You don’t have to give someone the exact details of what is happening, but something better than “I have stuff going on” would be expected, as that sounds extremely vague and could be interpreted as dismissive and passive aggressive. I would liken it to calling in sick at work, you don’t have to give all the gory details of your illness, but something better than “I don’t feel well” is expected.

     

    Post # 74
    Member
    1105 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2017

    We had a destination wedding in a Zika area. 

    Our best best friends declined our wedding. Unbeknownst to us, they were TTC and it was taking awhile. Their agreement was, if she was pregnant by 2 weeks before our wedding, the husband could go. But if not, neither could attend. We fully understood! Unfortunately, she wasn’t pregnant so they both couldn’t come. But, she did get pregnant later that month 😊 this was not friendship ending. I just got back from running errands with her, her 8 month old and my 3 month old.  We’re still great friends.

     

    Life happens. I think brides also need to understand that their weddings ar super important to thmselves. But not as important to everyone else.

    Post # 75
    Member
    3446 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

    I think people are putting an emphasis on the wrong thing. I absolutely, 100% wanted all of the friends and family I invited to come to my wedding, and I was definitely bummed about the ones who couldn’t make it. But at the end of the day that wedding was about marrying Dh. I wanted an audience for that, but I didn’t need it. He was the only absolute in that day, the only one where it WAS a summons and not an invitation.

    I had a domestic destination wedding (in the states but at least 3hr+ away by car at a minimum for everyone) and about half of the people we invited couldn’t make it. Bummed? No question. Did I get an explanation from everyone? Nope. Has my relationship changed with any of those people? Absolutely not. My wedding was amazing and I had a great time with the people who attended. That’s all I wanted out of a wedding, a great time with people I cared about and I got that, despite the fact that everyone didn’t make it. I do not look back on that day and think about those who weren’t there, but I have awesome memories with those that were. Nothing to be salty about.

    Leave a comment


    Find Amazing Vendors