Post # 1
Hello bees. First time poster. Very newly engaged. We’re planning a destination wedding in the Caribbean in October. It’s very much our style, and will save us a ton of money because my fiance’s guest list would be insane. We’re in our mid 30s and waited this long to find someone special. We want the event to be special, too. For simplicities sake, we’re inviting immediate family only, which will still be about 20 people. We had a discussion through email to gauge what month and what kind of price range everyone is comfortable with. Almost everyone was supportive. Except my father. He replied with a novel of an email, saying “Beaches are “not his cup of tea” and that he ” has no consuming desire to witness the event as that is all fun; the serious and rough stuff happens when somebody’s sick or someone loses their job.” What the heck kind of reasoning is that?! He doesn’t care if he’s there because it’s just a happy event?!
I knew he’d be the one stick in the mud in my large family. He likes woodsy vacations and tends to only travel in the states. Think grand canyon, Appalachian mountains, etc. Every family vacation, he just wants to rent a house by a lake for a week. That’s all well and good, but we’ve done that multiple times now. This is my wedding, and we are beach people who like an adventure.
My mother passed away. It would really sting if my father didn’t want to go just because it’s not his choice of vacation. When you chose a Destination Wedding, you kind of already accept that not everyone will go. But this isn’t some second cousin; it’s the person who’s supposed to walk me down the aisle.
How am I supposed to react to this? Accept it as part of a destination wedding? Or am I rightfully hurt?
Post # 2
If you know this is your father’s personality, I’m not sure why you would plan a destination wedding and then get upset that he doesn’t want to come.
Post # 3
Be honest with him about you feel. I would be hurt if my Dad didn’t want to come to my wedding. It’s not about where he wants to go!
Post # 4
I think you have a right to be hurt and will also need to accept his decision if he does not go.
He mightt cave though. Just talk to him and say how important it is for you for him to be there. Hopefully he will listen.
Post # 5
Your feelings are your feelings. They are never right or wrong. Your Dad, however is entitled to his feelings too.
Although I can’t personally imagine missing my daughter’s wedding, you picked your location knowing he would hate it.
How long are you expecting your guests to stay? Knowing that he considers triopical beach vacations a waste of time and money, could he fly in for just a couple of days? or could you cover his expenses? It may be the idea of a week at a typical all inclusive that is nauseating to him.
Post # 6
I disagree. I think her father is being selfish for not going, when his reason is that he just doesn’t want to. if he was physically incapable of traveling or financially unable to, I’d get it. but this reason? I’d be hurt and let him know it.
sess: I wouldn’t change the destination because.. well, my dad is like that. if you always give to him, he’ll never ever change his ways. he needs to know how you feel and how this kind of stuff truly has an impact on you.
I’m not sure this was a helpful response. just wanted to say I understand. I’ve been going through this with my dad since I left home 13 years ago.
Post # 7
Maybe he’s being a stick in the mud (in part) because of your mother’s death. His comment about it being about the hard times rather than the parties may hint at that. Maybe spending time alone at a ‘romantic’ all inclusive wedding sound more than not fun – maybe it sounds like a painful reminder of him missing his wife.
Ideally, he’d bite his tongue and go to your Destination Wedding. However as PP have mentioned, you know his personality. It sounds as if you decided about the Destination Wedding ignoring his input. It also sounds like you put concerns about making your FI’s family uncomfortable – not inviting some to keep guest list and costs manageable – above your own father’s preferences. It can’t be a surprise.
Maybe only ‘expecting’ him for the wedding day as others have mentioned. Maybe apologizing to him – letting him know that you understand it isn’t his choice and your sorry but that you felt you had to make it for the reasons you explained. You both have your own feelings and you are both entitled to them.
Post # 8
I think he’s being selfish as well, he has no real reason not to travel (not that he’s expressed to you anyway). That said, if you knew that was going to be his reaction and planned it anyway, you can’t really be surprised. I would try and sit him down for a heart to heart about how much it means to you for him to be there.
For what it’s worth, we also had an immediate family only Destination Wedding and Mother-In-Law refused to come since it wasn’t what she wanted. Like, literally did not mention the wedding once after we told her we were going overseas. Honestly, I felt really sorry for my husband but he still says it was her loss and he wouldn’t change a thing. The rest of our family came and we all had an amazing time. We did not miss her and her negativity on the day.
Post # 9
It’s unreasonable to expect people to spend their money and time to do something they truly do not enjoy doing just because it’s your wedding.
Post # 10
I’m so sorry bee, I can’t imagine how hurtful those words must be. It sounds like he is still grieving for your mother in some ways, as his comments about things getting tough reveal. I think he is being selfish. What kind of parent skips their kid’s wedding because of a personal preference like that? I guess now you just need to decide if you’d rather get married in your dream location or cater to your father.
Post # 11
It’s her father, not people. Love shows up.
Sorry, sess. I feel your pain.
Post # 12
exactly!! I totally get others not being into it and I wouldn’t expect many to go. but parents, siblings, children.. they’re not “just” people. they shouldn’t miss such events for selfish or ridiculous reasons such as this. or for a lack of reason, such as this. if that makes sense.
Post # 13
We wanted a destination wedding aswell.. My fiancé is very close to his grandpa and due to health reasons he couldn’t come, my mom and dad honestly said they wouldn’t come either, so we cried, laughed and got over it. we are having a home town wedding now and not inviting people we don’t want to be there.. Remember it’s your wedding, you choose who you want to invite… No matter what you do, feelings will be hurt
Post # 14
Perhaps I should clarify – my mother passed away 10 years ago, after they had already been divorced for 4 years. He is in a committed relationship with another woman, who actually loves beaches. His not wanting to go has nothing to do with my mother’s passing.
I am in no way surprised that he voiced his disapproval of the decision. Yes, i know his personality, but i also know i wasn’t willing to change our ideal, dream wedding that we are 100% paying for ourselves based on ONLY his differing opinion. Everyone else is in. I just thought he’d hem and haw but ultimately still go. I spent my PTO and money on the woodsy vacations he wanted to go to for 10 years now, even though they were definitely not my choice of locations. I offered to pay his way, if it was just a financial thing. I also told him not to buy me expensive Amish made furniture sets like he did for my 2 older sisters – sets that cost much more than his cost to attend – because we don’t need things; we’re all set up. We’d prefer experiences. But that doesn’t seem to make a difference.
If my 3 sisters and their SOs can make it, and all of his family can make it, I’ll just have to be happy with what I can get I guess! But my father and I are close. Out of all my sisters, him and I had a very strong bond. I worked with him side by side at his small company for 4 years. Being one of the middles, I’ve always been the peace maker to their drama (I say that lovingly). My father can be a frustrating, sensitive yet insensitive,complex man. I was the one who was always able to look past his flaws and keep things harmonious. But on a day as big as your wedding, I guess you kind of want people to actually do what you want to do for once. In a big family where everyone has their own lives, how often do you get that chance?
It is what it is. His absence will sting, most certainly, but the most important thing to me is making that solemn promise- and that will still happen regardless of the guest list.
Post # 15
thank you. I think that’s a good approach.