(Closed) My First, His Second

posted 8 years ago in Encore
Post # 3
Member
1585 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

My marriage will be my first but his second.   I really dont have any problems with it.  He got married at a “city hall” in Northern England.  His ex wife asked him to marry her.  They never had a wedding or a reception.  No big white dress etc.

I understand why you would be upset about his family.  It does not seem that they understand where you are coming from.  Have you asked your Fiance to talk to them?  His family should not be comparing you to his ex.  I honestly think that is very poor taste and he was divorced so long ago it is insane to me that they are still talking about it.  I think that your Fiance should set them all straight.

About being the first choice.  So he made a choice to get married before you.  Did you know him when he got married the first time?  The point is that you couldn’t possibly be his second choice.  People make mistakes all the time like marry the wrong person.  He is extremely lucky to have someone like you who will make him happy for his entire life and yours!  Good luck… in a little over 6 months you will be his wife and that is what counts!

Post # 4
Member
555 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Same here my first his 2nd it was a disaster they got married very young and had no wedding just city hall. His parents are completely non interacting with us really so there’s no issues there and most of his friends do the man you’re so much better than her thing and I actually take it as a compliment. I don’t find it that they’re comparing me to her but realizing how much of a better match we are together, at least that’s been my experience. As for being his 2nd marriage they were so young, everyone makes mistakes and things happen. The more important thing is that you learn from them and move on. To be honest this has always made me feel like he’s so much more sure then someone who hasn’t gone through it before. I feel like I’m the perfect choice, not the 1st or 2nd and he’s always telling me that or things like that. Have you talked to your Fiance about feeling like your his 2nd choice? It might help to hear some of the things he has to say for a little reassurance.

Post # 5
Member
1209 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

My Fiance and I have been together for 4 1/2 years, and I met him while he was still married to his ex. Of course we did not start dating seriously until well after the divorce. He married a girl that he dated all through highschool and college. They were married for only 2 years and figured out that they should not be together. They were younger and luckily had no children. Anyhow, I do know kind of what you are going through. His parents have never been nothing except for supportive and are actually offering to pay for a lot of things. They have told me that the first marriage was a mistake and this is the real thing, so they are happy to pay and help in any way that they can. I am VERY lucky. That being said, his friends and parents friends have made a few comments that make me cringe! For example, when announcing our engagement at his parents friends Christmas party someone asked my Fiance if he was having it (the wedding and reception) at the same location as before! Ugghhhh!! My Fiance smiled and said “no”! There have been a few other comments that have made me feel uncomfortable as well. I just try and shrug it off and act like it doesn’t bother me. I think that people in general do not think before they speak. I also know what you mean about the “you are cuter”; “you have a better personality” type of comments. Why do we even have to talk about it?? =)I hate that you are going through this. Can your Fiance talk to his parents and explain that it is hurting both of your feelings that they are not being more supportive?

As far as books, I have no suggestions. Hang in there! (((Hugs)))

Post # 6
Member
2641 posts
Sugar bee

Ahh I have a very similar situation as you, Meg.  My first, husband’s second.  I do not have any ideas for books you can read, but I will say this will get much easier for you, particularly since he has no children with his ex-wife.  Mine didn’t either.

I knew right away Dh’s family wasn’t paying for anything.  They just don’t have any money.  Couple that with his father acting like Dh was going to jail rather than getting married…eh.  I don’t know that it was anything personal to me.  I think he hoped Darling Husband knew what he was doing “this time”. Oh well.  Also, there were issues with who he’d invite.  He felt awkward about inviting people to come to a second wedding, when they already came to the first wedding, and bought a present.  He didn’t want them to feel obligated to buy another present.

Also, I hear you about the being compared thing.  I guess I didn’t get comments to my face too much.  But still.. On my wedding video someone accidentally started to say DH’s ex-wife’s name.  (BIG THANKS for that!!!)  “You have to understand we were together for quite awhile.”  (Yeah, thanks for that one too!)  Also, Darling Husband didn’t get married by a JOP.  He got married in the Church and had to get an annulment.  So that required people to talk about the first marriage.  I would hear things like, “They were so good together.  I don’t know what went wrong.”  Or an old friend saying, “You and (ex) broke up?  Who would have seen that coming?”   Ugggggg.

Darling Husband and I like to joke that that was his practice marriage.  He he!  And in a way, I think a previous marriage did help him learn some things and become who he is.

I ouldn’t expect too much in terms of help for the Rehearsal Dinner.  If the comparison bothers you, maybe Fiance can ask the offenders to stop.  He can sound breezy about it.  “Mom, enough about (ex).  We know Meg is so much better, but it’s annoying to keep hearing about her.”  But you can also look at it as, the family is probably so much happier with you.  And honestly, in time, I’m sure those comparisons will die away.

As for, “been there done that”, IDK.  Most guys aren’t as into the wedding as much as the marriage, first wedding or second.  I think he is more excited to marry you than his ex, because he has learned from his experience, and knows this relationship is so much better.  And like my Darling Husband, he might have awkward feelings because his family has already been through te “big wedding” thing with him before.  He might feel guilty having another one.

 

Good luck.  Keep us updated.

Post # 7
Member
453 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2010

Hi. I’m going through the same thing. There is nothing you can do. It’s natural for people to compare you. And that causes me so much anxiety, but I’m marrying him and he’s marry me. End of story.

I have a feeling his family might not give us the same gifts they gave for his first wedding…and some might not come because they don’t respect our marriage after how bad he messed up the first one…but oh well. They are wrong.

Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind!

Post # 8
Member
1205 posts
Bumble bee

Hi Meg – My situation is the opposite – I’m the encore, FI has never been married before. 

I just wanted to share somethings from my perspective.  I think that, above all, it is important to communicate.  You can’t change his past, and really, his experiences have made him the man you love.  My Fiance is really good about telling me if something I say (or someone else says) bothers him – and why.  I think generally people make the comparison without thinking and they are trying to compliment you by saying you are better in whatever way.  My X is still involved in my life because we have children – but I tolerate him and that’s it.

It totally sucks that people assume they don’t have to make a big (or as big of) a deal with a second wedding.  As a bride, this has been VERY frustrating for me.  I just keep reminding people that he’s never done this before and he deserves all of the hype and fun.  We are getting the short end of the financial stick too – as my parents are not paying for the wedding.

Keep your chin up and just remember that in the end – it will be the two of you.  I agree that the comparisons will taper off and people will come to know and love you for you – not because you are just better than her. 

Post # 11
Member
340 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2010

Thank you @Meg3805 for starting this dialog. I too am in the same situation. My Fiance was married for 3 years. We started dating right after they separated (in ny you have to be separate for 1 year prior to divorcing) – it was an amicable divorce, but I have gone through my fair share of troubles since dating, and now getting ready to marry my Fiance.

His mom wouldn’t even meet me for almost the first 2 years that we dated because she felt like him getting divorced was wrong (she doesn’t care that it was a mutually agreed upon divorce). When she did finally meet me, she would constantly feel the need to talk about his ex-wife. She still continues to try and maintain a friendship with his ex-wife (her justification is that she developed her own independant relationship with this woman, so the ex-wife is now a friend). I know that the ex-wife has tried to show my Future Mother-In-Law that this isn’t ok. (His ex-wife really is a good person, she has never interfered with our relationship, and whole-heartedly embraced the divorce once they realized they were not meant for each other).

My Fiance had the big wedding his first go-round, and as this is my first (and hopefully only) wedding, I too am planning the princess wedding. Sometimes my Fiance slips and compares our wedding to his first, but he is generally good about not doing that. The hardest part has been that the majority of his family has said that they won’t attend our wedding, because they traveled to the first one, bought gifts, etc – only to have him be divorced and remarrying 7 years later. When we got engaged, no one in his family even sent a congratulations card.

I feel like you just have to realize that that was a part of his past, and you are a part of his future. It can be hard, but sometimes you have to be selfish and plan the wedding that you have always dreamed of. The success of your marriage is what matters most.

Post # 12
Member
2641 posts
Sugar bee

“I understand his parents paid for his Rehearsal Dinner the first time. But it’s the gesture; it’s saying, He didn’t want to wait for you (his perfect woman) to make the plunge so now we don’t feel like we should pay the marriage that is going to last forever. My parents are contributing thousands upon thousands of dollars, and his parents can’t/won’t contribute a few hundred? How’s that for a welcome to the family? It just doesn’t feel good. It makes me feel like 2nd choice, like this isn’t a ‘real’ wedding because it’s his second. It’s not less important, and that’s how I feel they’re making it.”

I’d really try to look at this differently.  This has nothing to do with you.  (Unless you feel they otherwise seem to treat you like they don’t like you.)  Hey parents paying for anything is a gift.  Paying for it a second time? I don’t know if I’d do it twice.  Your parents are contributing a lot, because you’re the bride (tradition) and probably because it’s your first wedding.  They probably wouldn’t be willing to spend so much a second time.  I know you’re looking for His family to contribute much less $, but perhaps they’ve agreed to set aside a certain amount for each of their children, and Fiance used his up the first time.

Don’t hold this one against your Future In-Laws.  Your Fiance is the one who made the choice to marry the wrong person the first time.  He’s a scientist, and a big boy. (And part of that is making good on mistakes.)  He should be willing to just pay for it himself.  (And I’d go so far as to say, if his parents offered to pay, he should turn them down.  Just my opinion.)

Post # 14
Member
124 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2010

 

I’m a second time bride and this is my FH first wedding.

A little background,

 I was with my first husband for all of my teen years and most of my 20’s. We got married young (me 22 him 25). We were married for 5 years. and now have been divorced for over 4 years.

I met my FH a few months after getting divorced (but were friends) and didn’t get serious until later in the year. We now have a baby together. We have been together for a little over 3 years.

My parents are giving me 500 bucks and his parents are giving us nothing for the wedding. (I think my parents gave me $1,500 the first time around).

I totally understand your situation,

My friends have accidentally called my FH my ex-husbands name…A lot at the beginning. My dad will talk about my ex-husband to my FH and tell him stories of fishing and doing really fun things that my FH haven’t gotten to experience with them since he works alot and we have a baby.

People will say how more responsible he is and how my Ex was not. I was in a wedding last year with my Ex. I was also in my brothers wedding with my Ex’s brother. People will come out and ask me how I feel about Ex-H getting remarried in front of my FH. I’ll get friends that I haven’t seen or heard from in a long time post stuff on my Facebook about “missing the old days” and talking about my Ex. People call me and report to me all sorts of info on my Ex…I could go on and on and on about things either said to me or to my FH about my Ex.

Now that more years have gone by it’s getting a little better.. I have talked to my parents about not bringing up my Ex. I’ve told my friends that if they find out stuff about my ex, I don’t want to know and don’t bring it up around my FH.

I know alot of this stuff used to bother my FH, but he’s mostly over it.. I know I would of not been able to deal with it if I was him..It would of bothered me A LOT.

Like your FH and I we have a past..It’s not going to dissapear.

All I can suggest, is to talk to your FH and have him talk to his parents. And if you can do it, go see a counselor.

Post # 15
Member
1641 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

I’m going through this, too, to some degree. My Fiance has remarked a few times “well, when I did it before, we…”. But honestly, his knowledge and experience is also kind of helpful. He learned afew things and I’m taking full advantage!

Post # 16
Member
1641 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

As far as his family contributing to the rehearsal dinner, they are right. They don’t have to contribute. A lot of these “traditions” are a thing of the past. today, brides make their own money and pay for their own things a lot of the time. Be happy about this- yo don’t have to do it anyone’s way but your own

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