Post # 1
I have a different account here, but decided to create another one for obvious reasons. MY Fiance and I got engaged a few months ago and I was recently in a bad accident. Thank God there were no life threatening injuries, but I have a lot of pain every single day and so many things have changed in my life due to this (I also had to postpone the wedding planning).
Prior to the accident, I had been heavily involved with my Church and am deeply saddened by their lack of response. I’ve been in that Church for 6 years…serving God, loving my brethren and allowing Christ to mold me. I thought I had true, sincere friends there, but by their lack of compassion or love I have to think otherwise. Don’t true Christians love their neighbors and show love & compassion?? I thought they were just that…true Christians, sisters in Christ. Boy was I wrong!! I know the Bible says that he that does not love does not know God because God is love. I’m so confused and sad. Seems like they’re just so occupied with their lives that they failed to be that reflection of Christ.
MY Fiance and I had not sent out invites yet (which is good now that I think about it) and now I’m really reconsidering inviting a lot of people. These were people that I truly thought of as a friend (some of them I was thinking of including in the bridal party) and most of them never even sent me a message to see how I was feeling or I haven’t heard from them in over a month (due to my injuries I haven’t been back at Church for 2 months now). It just really makes me so sad because I thought they were my friends….but I guess they didn’t view me as a friend.
That just makes me NOT want to invite them….why should I have to waste money on them when they didn’t even care to call or send a card or…ANYTHING…if the accident had been worse I could have died. Maybe I’m just ranting…but I am soo upset.
What would you all do if you were in my situation? Would you just not invite those people or would your invite them anyway.
Post # 2
Sorry to hear you are experiencing this, it must be really difficult for you. I say, do what you want. I had people that were suprised they weren’t invited to my wedding…to which I said, why? They are people that I see maybe once a year and they never intitate any other effort to hang out. It is your wedding, so many people get hung up on other people’s feelings. I hear it from people around me too that are engaged. They don’t know how to pare down the guest list but it’s too big, but they don’t want people mad at them. So?! I’m going into Thanksgiving and probably going to see family that wasn’t invited. I’m not ashamed or embarassed, and am ready to defend my decision. The day is about you, just like you can’t imagine spending life without your soon to be husband, who can you not imagine having your wedding without? And go from there. Good luck!
Post # 3
sadbee43 : I didn’t answer the poll, because I think there are a lot of ways to answer this question. First, how many people are you talking about, i.e. does inviting them or not greatly affect your planning numbers? Your wedding is 10 months away (according to your profile), and a lot can happen in 10 months. The second thing to look at is the circumstances surrounding the situation. Is everyone very aware of what happened, what injuries you sustained, etc? If so, what is the normal response in your church community? Do people normally set up special prayers sessions or chains, or bring meals? If your church doesn’t have an infrastructure for that type of support, that may explain why you feel that you fell through the cracks. However, if there normally is a large outpouring of love and compassion and action from your community when someone is ill or injured, I can understand your frustration. Ultimately, I think you need to look at the next 10 months. When you are better, do you plan to jump back into church activities with gusto? If so, you are going to be seeing a lot of your fellow church members, and if all is forgiven in 10 months, will you regret having cut them from your wedding celebration?
Post # 4
I think that maybe now isn’t the best time to change your plan or invitation list. I would give yourself some more time to focus on you and recovery. I almost died in a car accident 6 weeks before my wedding too so my very sincere empathy and sympathy. I’m so sorry you went through that and I’m glad you’re okay overall.
From going through something similar, I have to admit that my judgment and emotions were not what they would have been normally for several months. With pain and anger and frustration and occasional bitterness plus add in the menta and emotional influence of pain pills and fear (like that I’d never be able to walk again or see well, etc), I just couldn’t handle things in the same way during that time. Everything seemed more personal and my focus was so much on myself but I have to realize my life and pain wasn’t going to be as big a deal to people who didn’t see me laying in the hospital as it was to myself and my fiancé and my family and 2 or 3 very close friends.
People have their own stuff and even Christians are still dealing with their own problems and might not have a clue how you’d like them to support you. I had several people who thought leaving me alone as much as possible to rest/recover was the right idea. And right now this is a huge traumatic thing for you and that can overwhelm how you’d normally handle things and make things feel more personal or insulting than they really are.
So I think you should not make a decision to cut anyone from your list right now. Wait a few months. You don’t only invite besties to your wedding and these people may be very good church-only friends that you would later regret cutting during a time where you were in maybe a temporary mood of “you’re not a real friend because you weren’t there how I would have wanted” bitterness.
Yes, it would have been great of them to reach out but you aren’t friends only for what you get from them, right? Try to be brave and contact them first and let them know you need support, prayer, some frozen meals, whatever. I bet you’d be amazed what happens when they know you have a need and how they can specifically help. And for those who don’t-it is a good moment to realize they may see your friendships differently than you do but I still wouldn’t cut them just yet because they didn’t meet your expectations during these circumstances. This is an overwhelming time for you and I think you should leave big decisions about friendships alone for a little bit longer until you’re sure you’re making them without pain and trauma affecting those decisions.
I wish you a speedy recovery and people to surround you who remind you are not alone and that you will feel loved and cared for.
Post # 5
sadbee43 : You’ve gotten some great advice here so far. And I am so sorry you’re suffering, my heart goes out to you.
My opinion is this, what do/did you expect from them? You said most of your church friends didn’t contact you after your accident. So, that means some of them did? Or even one of them did? How about appreciating who did contact you to wish you well?
Also, just because people haven’t reached out yet doesn’t mean they don’t care. They might be deep in prayer for you this very minute.
Forgive like a true Christian. And reach out to those who have contacted you so far and thank them from the bottom of your heart. Maybe you could mention you feel up to having more visitors now and ask if they can spread the word. It’s possible people are waiting to make sure you feel strong enough to have visitors. Just a thought.
And whoever you wanted to invite to your wedding prior to the accident, I think you should still invite. So, that was my vote.
Post # 6
Honestly…I feel like we live in a society today that is very self-absorbed, and Christians are not exempt from that. I think about back to my grandparents before their passing. They were completely devoted to their church (the SAME church) for over 40 years, spending countless hours volunteering and being involved. I remember being a kid and many members of their church family coming by when someone was ill to check on them, or just overall well wishes. Everyone was very involved with each other. Towards the end of their life it’s almost as if they fell off the face of the earth.
I think with your wedding 10 months out you’ve got plenty of time to really think about your guest list. You don’t need to be sending invites out until around 8 weeks prior. Wait and see how things go.
Post # 7
sadbee43 : First of all, I’m so sorry to hear about your accident. Glad you are okay and starting to recover.
I would stick to inviting only those who you feel you have a strong relationship with. If you feel like your accident has affected your relationship with some of these people – don’t invite them. I would probably be upset too if someone that I considered a friend hadn’t even tried to check up on me after going through something like that. Hopefully some of the people from your church have been supportive – and like PP said, make sure you sincerely thank them for being supportive.
In the church I attend, when a member(or even a non-member that attends semi-regularly) goes through something rough, the congregation comes together and supports said person. They do whatever they can to help out, through the good and the bad both! Though not every single person contributes in things like this, many people do. My Future Sister-In-Law had a kidney transplant years ago, and she’s spoken about how much everybody from her church was there for her during her sickness, dialysis, transplant, recovery, etc. That’s how I truly think a church family should be, especially for any members that are very involved in the church, like you’ve said you are. Maybe you can eventually speak your mind about this to some of your church friends, and it may help bring the congregation together.
As another PP said, I would probably wait awhile to finalize your list. I’m sure your emotions are high right now (rightfully so), and this may be something that you go back and forth on in your mind before you come to peace with a decision. Some people may also be waiting to contact you for fear of disturbing you – I would hope that others step up in the weeks to come. You do have plenty of time to finalize your guest list.
I hope the rest of your recovery goes well! Hugs!
Post # 8
Back in 2003 I was diagnosed with cancer. I had to have an operation, radiotherapy and chemotherapy. I can count the people from our Church (and it was a large church) who visited me over a time period of a year on one hand. Lots of people would rush up to my husband at church on a Sunday morning to ask how I was. A few even sent flowers. But they didn’t visit me. Eventually my husband made it obvious – “Supersleuth is on her own and would really welcome visitors” – but still no visitors.
At the time it hurt me very much. I could have died and the so-called Christians didn’t care. I was very angry.
They didn’t even make sure that my husband or little girl were okay. It was as though we suddenly didn’t exist.
The people who did visit and help were my SIL, a very, very small number of people from the church and a few of my secular friends.
It took me years to realise that in the large but repressed Scottish church that I attended people were so afraid of getting things wrong – saying or doing the wrong thing – that they didn’t do the right things. They were not prepared to come and visit and run the risk of embarassing silences or awkward moments and so they did nothing thus avoiding anything that would take them out of their comfort zones.
Strangely it didn’t stop them asking my husband to do church committee things even when they were told that if I became ill I had to get to the hospital within theee hours. (Some of the committee meetings went on for four hours and more.) This too was about avoidance of enbarassment. My husband is a nice man and was just easier to ask than the more difficult members of the Church.
We eventually left the Church.
I learned three important lessons:
The church has no monopoly on love and kindness. Jesus dwells as much, if not more, with secular people.
When you have a serious illness or injury you find out who your friends are and sometimes they are unlikely people.
You and I know what it is like to not be visited. We don’t have to be the same as these non-visiting church members. We know just how important it is to see people and support them through rough times. So we can be the ones that make sure that other people don’t have to face life-changing events alone.
As far as wedding invitations are concerned. Leave it a couple of months and see how you feel.
Post # 9
I’m so sorry you’ve been made to feel so alone. I hope you have some other great supports around you. Sadly some christians use the label to be horribly judgemental and I’ve met some of the unfriendliest and cliquey people through church groups.
Sometimes chirstian teachings and principles give a good and kind person a direction and they will be one of the best people you may ever meet but I often find good people are just good people, in or out of church.
Find some real friends and don’t be afraid to make them at work or a class. Less secrets and judgement.
Post # 10
Supersleuth : “The church has no monopoly on love and kindness. Jesus dwells as much, if not more, with secular people.”
Beautifully said and so, so true. I have seen more hate and judgement spewed from people in my old church and old southern Baptist private school than I’ve ever experienced in more “secular” crowds.
I am not a practicing Christian anymore, but to me it always seemed that one of the most Christlike things a person could do was to forgive. Look at Jesus–forgiving the people who gave him up to be crucified even as it happened. It is not “Christlike” to talk about how other people aren’t being Christlike. I understand you are hurting, but focusing on this negativity is only going to bring you down further. As a PP mentioned, instead try to focus on the good–like the few people who did come visit you, your loving partner, etc., and try to find it in your heart to forgive the people who let you down. After all, you never know what might be going on with them in their private lives either.
I hope you feel better soon!
Post # 11
tiffanybruiser : This was 13 years ago and yes I’ve managed to forgive them but I’m not going to pretend that it was at all easy.
The reason it took so long was that I cared but they didn’t. How can Christians not care after all those sermons and prayers and Bible reading? Well I still don’t have an answer to that one.
I’m not going to do some intellectal and emotional somersaults to sonehow see things in a good light. It was a bad time and many of the church people behaved badly. I’d rather embrace the truth of the matter. I did very much appreciate those who were there for me.
Post # 12
tiffanybruiser : This was 13 years ago and yes I’ve managed to forgive them but I’m not going to pretend that it was at all easy. The reason it took so long was that I cared but they didn’t. How can Christians not care after all those sermons and prayers and Bible reading? Well I still don’t have an answer to that one.
I’m not going to do some intellectual and emotional somersaults to somehow see things in a good light. It was a bad time and many of the church people behaved badly. I’d rather embrace the truth of the matter. I did very much appreciate those who were there for me. I’m sure the OP will too.