Post # 1
SO and I are trucking right along in our relationship on our way to an engagement and hopefully a wedding in the next few years.
But with all this talk it’s stirred up a lot of issues I’ve had in the past from not knowing my real father or anyone from that family. Long story short: my mom’s side of it was that they were a very proud family and highly esteemed in the church, and when their 18 year old son got his 18 year old girlfriend pregnant out of wed-lock, it was quite the issue. They wanted my mom and dad to wed right away and then move to a small neighboring town where I could be born in secret. My mom was to not go out into public pregnant, and she was to work to put their son through college. She said “F that”, and then his family worked pretty hard to shun us, while he made no effort to fight it. (This was 1988 btw, not like… 1942)
I reached out to his younger sister (who apparently babysat me as an infant and LOVED my mom) via Facebook earlier this year, and we’ve been emailing ever since. Turns out her and I have a LOT in common, and she was shocked to find out I didn’t know what my father looked like. Sheesh – let me tell you I apologized to my mother after seeing his pictures. She has had to see his face EVERY DAY since I was born. Anyways, I digress…. I haven’t asked her all of the super big questions, but I did get the family medical history (to include fertility problems), and a brief synopsis of her side of the story.
But – with emailing back and forth with her, and a few quips saying “if you come to the area, you have a place to stay”, it got me thinking… would she want to come to the wedding? What would the family think about their first grandchild (secret or not) getting married? What would my father think? …
So now, I’m compiling the dreaded “questions” to email to her and we shall see how it all goes. So far she has been very open and helpful, and I hope that it continues and I don’t scare her away.
Have you engaged/married/waiting bees had similar questions pop up amidst your future plannings?
Post # 3
While I am not dealing with anything similar…I do think it’s important for your family history that you find out relevant information about your paternal side. It’s not at all innapropriate to ask or contact people and let them know who you are so long as they are not uncomfortable. I certainly wouldn’t push the issue of getting together and discussing your father over lunch….but you get the idea. Sounds like his parents were pretty conservative for the time period in which you were concieved. Alot has changed since then and i’m sure the consensus on your paternal side is accepting and acknowledging nowadays.
My fiancee’ did not know his father (who is now deceased) and does not attempt to stay in contact with his fathers side of the family…though I do recall FI’s father’s sister sending a christmas card a few years back and she also did contact him to inform him his father had passed (about 5 years ago)…but the situation was a bit different.
My FI’s parents were married to eachother before he and his siblings were concieved/born….but it was still a huge scandal in his father’s family, because my FI’s mother is a native islander with a heavy accent and they did not approve (his dad’s side is apparently caucasian)…so the marriage broke down while him and his siblings were all toddlers….his father did not make an attempt to maintain any sort of relationship with his children (my FI)….and my Fiance did not seem one bit sad when he heard his father was murdered (by his own son from a second marriage no-less)…and has not reached back at his father’s sister’s attempts to be cordial towards him, even from afar.
Although I sorta wish he were interested in knowing that side of the family. They are obviously open to knowing us by those small gestures. It would be itneresting to see photos of his father, etc. I say keep those connections alive, because you may never know what could come of them.
Post # 4
My sister and I were in similar situations, but with different fathers (same mother). I chose to ignore my bio-father’s family, and she is not. If I were you, I’d ask your mom how she felt about all this. And then respect her wishes. If she doesn’t want them to come to the wedding, or doesn’t want to know about them, then I would meet them privately, but not bring them around your mom.
Good luck, and I hope it all goes well!
Post # 5
I would tell your mom and talk to her about her feelings. If you feel like you want to know your dad, I think it’s perfectly reasonable to meet him. I think it’s perfectly reasonable to also have a relationship with your Aunt. She especially had the least to do with anything.
If you want members of your father’s side of the family at your wedding and in your life, it is YOUR decision. And theirs of course lol. If you want them around, you have a right to have them around. I wouldn’t force everyone to come to thanksgiving or anything, but slowly getting to know the other side is perfectly okay if you’re okay with it.
If you’re not ready to meet other members of his side, then that’s okay. If you’re not ready to meet her, that’s okay. I think that if you want to invite her to the wedding, it’s up to you. I would just be open and honest about your decisions and intentions.