Post # 1
Sorry for the abrupt title.
My Fiances parents, and most of his family for that matter, passed away several years ago. Though it happened mostly around the same time their deaths were unrelated. The only family fiance has left is one aunt and uncle and a grandmother.
On his parents: Their abscence on the wedding will be conspicuous and i’d like to include them somehow. I met fiance about a year after they passed away so I never knew them. Fiance doesn’t talk about it much, he was only 15 when he was suddenly unexpectedly orphaned. He seems to have coped by blocking it out. Everyone expects a big moving tribute to his parents and some guests have asked about it but I’m worried about how Fiance will cope if there is and what guests will say if there isn’t…
On the remaining family
2 of the 3 family live in another country. They have very little contact with fiance (i’ve met them twice? In the seven years we’ve been a couple) and have not asked about the wedding though they will be attending. My family seem to assume they will pretty much assume the role of grooms parents but I don’t know…they don’t seem to like me very much.
The third family member, a grandmother, suffers from Alzheimers and does not recognise Fiance. She spends a lot of time with the other family members abroad. I met her once.
I’m very confused between what everyone seems to expect me to do. Thankyou in advance for your advice xxx
Post # 3
I am in the same boat. My Fiance has not close family members.
- His mother left his life when he was 2, after trying to drown him
- His grandparents passed when he was in his teens
- Shortly after his Aunty died
- His Dad passed when my Fiance was in his 30s
- He has no full siblings
- He has two different sets of steps siblings. One set is not interested in knowing him, and the younger set I have met all of twice in the 9 years I have known him.
I don’t think there is much you can do personally about the situation. I think the best thing you can do is let your Fiance know that you are his family now.
We talk about that all the time, how he now has a family (we have 2 kids together). And thats something he hasn’t really experienced before. His parents were teen parents, and not at all ready for the responsibility. He was raised by his grandparents until they were to sick to look after him. Then he went to his Aunty (who died young) and then to his father, who didnt want to be a father (and also died relatively young).
I have tried several times to extend the olive branch to his step siblings to try and form some sort of relationship with them. It does break my heart when the kids ask why they only have one set of grand parents and one Aunty. But I have come to realise that I can’t force it, and if they aren’t interested then its just not going to work.
Post # 4
@Firie: Thankyou for your lovely reply. It’s nice to hear from someone who has started to build their own unique family. I do sometimes feel a bit sad that any children we have won’t know their paternal granparents. I was very lucky, I knew two grandmothers, my only grandfather, and great grandparents on my mothers side. Pretty much a full set minus two absent fathers.
Coming from a large extended family I wish my Fiance could have a better relationship with his remaining family too but if they aren’t up for it I guess it’s all you can do. Xx
Post # 5
Been mulling this over a bit. I have seen several things done to pay tribute to passed family members.
Some things like
- A mention in the Service Program
- Photos on the altar
- Empty chair with a rose laid on it
- A candle lit in their memory
- A poem mentioning them
- A table at the reception with their photos
- A photo concealed in a pocket that only you know about
- A meaningful toast at the reception where they are mentioned
But in the end, it needs to be his decision. If this is something he doesn’t want to approach on his wedding day, then I wouldn’t push him into it because guests are expecting it. I think you need to have the conversation with him, just to find out where his comfort level is.
I had the same conversation with my other half, he still hasnt come back to me with an answer. I am hoping that he will before the day.
Post # 6
@Anardana: I know how you feel. I have one Grandmother left, and grew up knowing all my grandparents. Well I didn’t know my Mother’s Dad. But I knew her Step Dad, who was more of a Dad then her biological father. And I grew up not really knowing the difference.
Any children you have will grow up with so much love from your own family. While it is sad they won’t know his side, they won’t miss out on any love and affection.
When our first child was born we gave her his fathers name as a middle name. His name was Peiter and we changed it to Peita. That was my suggestion, I said that way even though his father won’t be part of her as she grows up, this way he can still be in her identity. I let him think it over for awhile, at first he said no. But by the time she was born he had warmed to it, and was glad that I had suggested it.
Post # 7
My Fiance family is the same. He and his mother do not see eye-to-eye, his ssiter is a nice person but causes too much drama. His father is not in the picture at all. So that leaves his set of proud gradparents all 3 in their 90’s.
We are newly engaged and with the ages of his grandparents (who are the most amazing people i’ve ever met) i almost wanted to push up our long enegagement so we can include them. Or so they could least be aware of it.
Its a tough decision but i think it up to your Fiance if any type of tribute is done in their honor.
Post # 8
Mines about the same. Only it’s me. I have my dad. and my sister. That’s it. All 4 grandparents are gone. my mom passed away. I don’t speak with aunts/uncles on either side.
I didn’t know any of the grandparents really except my moms dad. who I hated TBH.
We’re doing sunflowers in my boquet. They’ll go in a nice vase during the reception, not get tossed. And they’ll have a nice little saying on them, with something like, these flowers were picked for rememberance of both Mrs and Mr Giraffes mothers.
Post # 9
@Firie: That’s so lovely 🙂 I really like your ideas for memories at the wedding and I will be sure to bring them up gently to fiance. Thankyou! Xx