Nasty breakup in wedding party…how to deal with +1s?!

posted 3 years ago in Emotional
Post # 16
292 posts
Helper bee

I know it’s against etiquette but I would not invite Z if I were you. I would do anything to protect my friends, and would want them to enjoy the night as much as I. I would feel terrible if I knew my good friend was emotionally suffering the entire evening because social niceties required me to invite a person I have never even met.

Yes, they’re adults, yes they should be able to handle it. But they clearly still have issues and I feel that there are instances when protecting your friend overrules etiquette. We’ve all been heartbroken and hurt, some people take a long time to get over it. I wouldn’t just tell A to suck it up, especially since it seems to benefit no one but B. In the long run, A will have to get over it, but if she’s not ready yet, I would bend the rules to help her out just this once.

Post # 17
367 posts
Helper bee

Maybe Z will do the right thing and make up a bogus excuse for why she can’t make it… Does she want to be at a wedding with her ex friend who’s boyfriend she had an emotional affair with and is now dating? 

Post # 18
355 posts
Helper bee

I wouldn’t invite Z, partially to help my friend and partially to avoid a scene at the wedding. If B is petty he might cause a scene anyway, but at least without Z there it’s slightly less likely. Honestly I’d also have a talk with your Fiance to come up with a game plan of what to do if there is an altercation/scene. If your venue has a security guard provided (that’s common where I live), you should give a picture or point out A and B to the security guard so he knows to watch out for any problems. Hopefully none of that is needed, but when tensions are high and you add in alcohol things tend to escalate.

Post # 19
29 posts
  • Wedding: December 2016


frankly i wouldn´t do anything, because B is still a groomsmen and has the right to bring his girlfriend and the breakup is already 8 month ago and it will be even longer when you actually get married. 

I learned and it is my experience that for a breakup, even if it is a really shitty one, there are always 2 people involved and not just one bad guy. A cried her heart out on the telephone, so nobody knows how B felt before the breakup. 

You wrote that A always had problems with her feeling not good enough, perhaps that was just her feeling and not his? I think it is natural that a partner looks for a friend to do some hobbies if the spouse is not available because of work. So what if the friend is from the opposite sex? I would have been hurt if my boyfriend told me to quit a frriendship because he feels that there might be more going on or that he feels insecure about himself or me if i would go spend some time with a friend, this is a serious trust issue for me and i would have been hurt if he would have left me beacause of it.

B might have been a shitty boyfriend in the end, but he was probably a good one for the first 4-5 years out of 6, so anywhere between must have happend anything between them, might have been a small thing, but people change and feelings change too. I think it´s natural that he seeks some solace in a close friend and it seems that Z was the only one available for him.

So let B be petty, if he´s such an ass, A should B happy that he isn´t her boyfriend anymore and she should look out for her own happiness and bring a plus one, male or female. 

Post # 20
6945 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

Nothing irritates me more than adults who can’t act like adults. She broke up with him, their relationship is over. I’m sure she still has hurt feelings over it, but bringing her drama into your wedding day isn’t appropriate. B should be allowed to bring his date, end of story. They are a unit and why should he be punished because A is upset about his new relationship? If he’s close enough to be part of your bridal party, his feelings should be respected just as much as A’s.

Frankly I’d help A find herself a smoking hott date and just roll with it. If B is as bad of a boyfriend and she thinks he is, she should be happy he’s someone else’s problem now.

Post # 21
2642 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: December 2016

This is one of those you’re damned if you do and you’re damned if you don’t situations. If you allow B to bring Z, A is going to be (understandably) hurt. If you don’t allow B to bring Z, he is going to be pretty peeved and it will affect his relationship with your Fiance.

In all honesty, I would probably just let B bring Z. This is the correct thing to do etiquette wise, plus it’s what your Fiance wants to do anyway. At the end of the day, if A and B run in the same social circles she’s going to need to get used to seeing him and Z – otherwise she needs to find herself a new set of friends. Of course, allowing B to bring Z doesn’t mean that they need to rub their relationship in A’s face. How are you planning the seating arrangements? Are you sitting with your bridal party? If so, put their dates/SO’s somewhere else. If you want your bridal party to sit with their dates/SO’s, make sure A and B/Z are on completely different tables. Don’t allow Z to be in any of the photos (she’s just the girlfriend of a groomsman, so she doesn’t need to be in them anyway).

Post # 22
89 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2017

I am going to go against the grain.  You do not need to invite anyone you do not want at your day.  If his feelings are hurt, he can step down as a groomsman.

Post # 23
29 posts
  • Wedding: December 2016

Well, if he´s not invited he can´t be a groomsmen…

What does your Fiance think? Does he want him to be there?

I mean it should be his desicion too, it´s his friend and groomesmen.

Post # 24
1470 posts
Bumble bee

It’s not “inviting the girlfriend”, it’s allowing him a +1.  If other wedding party members get a +1, then so does he – and he’s allowed to bring anyone he likes.  Sorry but that’s the way it is.  A broke up with B (sounds like rightfully so) and he’s allowed to date whomever he wants as a single man.

By getting involved and starting more drama, it’s only going to hurt your husband and potentially cause a fight between you.  She will be okay.  In my opinion it’s going to be worse taking group photos near him all day, not the recption.

Post # 25
9026 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

I agree with pp that the groomman should be allowed to bring his partner. If A wants to throw a tantrum and not come because of it then that is on her. I think that it is pretty shitty that A is doing this to you OP and she is being manipulative and petty. People break up, it sucks but to still be acting like this after so long indicates that there is a problem that A needs to address in therapy. As a pp said relationship breakdowns are rarely only one persons fault.

Post # 26
596 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2017

Nope. My friends feelings would trump that of two cheaters. I wouldn’t invite Z and if B can’t attend without her, then too bad so sad, I guess he won’t come either. 

B and Z obviously aren’t too concerned about everyday etiquette, so your wedding shouldn’t be any exception. 

Post # 27
265 posts
Helper bee

Yes, they are both adults but that doesn’t mean A is healed from the breakup. Especially being together 6 years and ending it on these terms.. that’s going to take more then 6 months to heal from. 

Because of that, I don’t think you should allow the groomsman his new girlfriend. 

karamellokoala :  said it perfectly… “B and Z obviously aren’t too concerned about everyday etiquette, so your wedding shouldn’t be any exception”. 

Post # 28
7645 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

I wouldn’t invite Z. I’m on record here, many times, of inviting new partners after a nasty breakup… but only after a suitable length of time. B and Z have only been dating a few months. You’ve never met Z, and you and Fiance are both aware of how badly B treated A. I wouldn’t invite Z, and be prepared for B to not attend.

To put it another way, you have two choices:

1. Invite Z, and be prepared for A to drop out.

2. Not invite Z, and be prepared for B to drop out.

And I don’t think losing B from your lives would be a great loss.

ETA: I also agree with the comment that B doesn’t seem to think much about etiquette. In weddings, etiquette is just a set of guidelines about how you treat friends. And it sounds like B doesn’t deserve the friendly treatment if he cheats on A (and he undoubtably cheated emotionally at the very least) and treats her badly during the breakup.

Post # 29
570 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: January 2018

Yes yes we’re all adults and should be able to be in the same room together… but I don’t really get what’s in it for Z? Why would she want to travel (at her own expense, maybe B’s but still) to spend a night near this person who she must also be made uncomfortable by? I feel like shit happens with love, but if I were her I would NOT want to attend this party. Are you sure she’s even coming? This might be a non-issue.

If she is coming… I don’t know, I guess to me that proves a pretty shady character. I know etiquette says otherwise but if she is petty enough to show, B and she are probably petty enough to create a scene. I think it’s fair that you’d want to avoid that. At the end of the day it’s your wedding. Screw ettiquette. You have a right to want to attention on your love not drama. And you also have a right to want the people you love to be able to joy your day with you. But whatever you decide, you have to have your Fiance on the same page. Don’t let your friends’ drama create a rift in your own relationship.

Post # 30
8173 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

I have to come down on the side of inviting Z as a normal plus 1/partner.

I would  work with  A as much  as possible to help her to show some pride and not publically display her loss and grief and inabilty to handle   what is , after all,  a  painful but fairly common life event .

I know its  clichéd   to say living well is the best revenge, but it is, and if you can at  least role play living well, that’s the next best thing.There must be someone of your aquaintance who she could bring as a ‘date’ , it’s only for the  day.

I think you have been very kind and loving and helpful to her so far and the best thing you can  do now is to help her show some backbone and not sink into a  slough  of self pity.  If it were you, I bet you could get it together and hold your head up with a smile or two at her  wedding couldn’t  you ! And so can she .


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