(Closed) The age-old dilemma: partners at weddings

posted 9 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 47
Member
319 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

Ok, so I’ve now read through all of the comments and am ready to announce my verdict!  lol  It sounded funny in my head and I’m hoping you take it that way too OP πŸ™‚

Inc. wall of text, feel free to skip it if you’re not interested.  I promise my feelings won’t be hurt, I do tend to ramble. πŸ˜›

Anyway, I do still stand by what I originally said.  You set the rules/boundries that you and your Fiance were comfortable with and I think you should either stick to them or allow exceptions for everyone.  If I were in your shoes I think I would stick to my guns on this one.  You should also be understanding if anyone (even your friend of 20 years) declines the invitation because they can’t bring a date (partner or otherwise, weddings can be no fun without a date) and not hold a grudge against them for it.

Now that I’ve said all of that I will give you my personal, somewhat biased, opinion of the situation that has nothing to do with etiquette.  πŸ™‚  I absolutely can’t stand cheaters, especially the married kind so keep that in mind as you’re reading all of this.  It seems to me like there may be more things wrong with your friendship with this girl (or maybe just with the girl) than just the fact that she can’t bring her BF to your wedding.  IMHO she sounds a little insecure since she feels compelled to date a married man and is so attached to him that she’d risk a 20 year friendship for him.  Quite possibly she has other issues as well, dating a married man is a pretty big deal IMO. I don’t agree with the idea that it’s ok to date someone who’s married.  However, as PP pointed out, maybe this guy is in the process of getting divorced and your friend is ok with that?  Maybe he’s told her he’ll leave his wife and she foolishly believes him?  Maybe she just likes the excitement that goes with having something forbidden?  Whatever the case may be with that, it’s obvious that you and your friend have different values on this particular subject.  Weather or not that is enough reason for you to reconsider your entire friendship is up to you, but I think I would be doing just that if I was in your shoes.  I completely understand why you wouldn’t want this guy at your weddnig and I don’t think I would feel comfortable with him being at mine either (let alone actually wanting him there… yuck!).  I don’t think I’d be comfortable being in the same room with him, and I would have a really hard time being around her to be honest knowing that she was doing something I’m so strongly opposed to.  Of course, my stance on this is a bit extreme for a lot of folks and that’s ok too.  It’s up to you how you feel about all this.

Definately listen to that little voice in the back of your head!  Those are there for a reason and I’ve learned over the years not to ignore mine.  I’m not sure that now is the time to bring all of this up with your friend (you’re the best judge of that) but I completely understand your POV and I would be tempted to address my concerns with her.  However, I would do it in a way that was completely unrelated to the wedding and guest list.  As far as the guest list goes (and thus, weather or not she can bring her BF) I would politely tell her that you and your Fiance want to have a small wedding and that unfortunately, that means he can’t come.  Tell her that you will miss her if she doesn’t attend, but that you understand and won’t be upset if she chooses not to come.  Try your best to mean it too and not let the fact that she’s missing your wedding be the only thing that ends your friendship (if it does end at all).  If you want to bring up her relationship and why you’re not ok with it, why you’re concerned about her, etc. feel free to do so, but keep it seperate from the conversation about wedding stuff if possible.  If your friendship with her does end, I think it should be because you have vastly different values and ultimately couldn’t respect her decisions enough to maintain a friendship, not because she didn’t attend your wedding.  Like I’ve said, I think her not attending is an understandable choice, as is you not inviting her BF.

I hope that all made sense and that you had the patience to make it to the end of that.  Sorry it was so long, but apparently I had a lot to say on the subject lol

P.S.  She sounds like the selfish biatch, not you!  I totally understand the feeling of wanting the whole situation to just go away, but I don’t think that’s likely to happen any time soon.  Go with your gut and don’t change your plans for her is my advice.  Stand your ground, but only once.  There’s no need to have the conversation again after that.  If she brings it up again, change the subject or just simply end the conversation.  There’s no reason to stress yourself out over it.  If she chooses not to come, fine.  If she chooses to come alone, that’s fine too.  Don’t give it any more thought once you tell her your decision.  Sometimes we need to avoid toxic people, and right now this girl sounds fairly toxic.  We’ve all got your back though so feel free to rant here if you need to. πŸ™‚  Now I think I’m finally done lol

Post # 48
Member
1135 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

Am I the only one who thinks that a married person should not be dating unless they a) have mutually agreed to a seperation, b) are living in different residences, and c) are in the processing of obtaining a divorce?

From what the OP has implied, this doesn’t seem like the case. The friend’s request is so incredibly inappropriate I can’t believe people are justifying it.

Post # 49
Member
317 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2013

I honestly did not know this was an age old question.  Every wedding I’ve been to has allowed whoever is invited to bring one guest unless of course you’re invited as a couple then the two of you just come together.  What if the person your inviting doesnt know anyone else at the wedding?

Post # 50
Member
2639 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - Baltimore Museum of Industry

@CuriousOne:  Yep, if you invite him, etiquette says his wife has to be invited, too! LOL!

OP: Stand your ground. You said this man is married, not separated- I think if he was, you would have told us. You DO have the right to judge that you don’t want an adulterous relationship represented at your WEDDING.

Your friend can’t be away from him for an afternoon? How does she handle going to work? Outside of the whole “he’s married” issue, doesn’t sound like a healthy one, anyway.

Post # 51
Member
319 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

@worldtraveler:  It looks to me like almost everyone who has commented after the OP said he was married agrees that a married man should not be dating.  The comments justifying letting him come look to me like they were all made before the OP mentioned that part. πŸ˜‰

ETA:  Ok, I do see a couple, but I think the vast majority would agree that married people should not be dating.  You’re hardly the “only one” as you put it.

Post # 52
Member
1135 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

AllTheGoodUsernamesAreTaken Yeah that was overly dramatic. Guess I was just surprised that there were people at all who thought it would still be appropriate for him to come.

Post # 53
Member
319 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

@worldtraveler:  It’s possible this is a case of “different strokes for different folks” but I think another likely possibility is that there’s a couple posters who are like me and might have posted their responses without reading all the comments ahead of them.  Thus, not realizing the BF is a married man.  That’s exactly what I did and didn’t realize it until the OP pointed it out.  I’m with you though, if they really do think it’s ok that might be a little odd.  Maybe not though, different people have different values.  I dunno, tough call there.  Anyway, I think I was a little harsh on you too.  Sorry bout that, I’ve been kinda grumpy today but that’s no excuse.

Post # 54
Member
79 posts
Worker bee

I’ve actually been on the other end of this sort of situation – my SO was invited to a friend’s wedding and I wasn’t. He wanted to attend and I thought he shouldn’t as I’d been excluded, which caused a huge argument which nearly ended in us breaking up.

I felt that these “friends” were disrespecting my relationship by inviting my SO but not me. Married and engaged friends had been given a +1… so my long term relationship is considered less serious just because he hasn’t given me an expensive ring?! Sorry but I feel that’s disrespectful to my relationship. We’re a serious couple, we’ve been together longer than the bride and groom have, and in a social sense we should be treated as a unit, i.e. invite both of us or neither of us. By inviting only him they were clearly stating that they considered him to be a friend but didn’t consider me to be a friend, and didn’t consider us to be a serious couple. I felt that my SO should decline the invitation to make a point that we ARE a serious couple and if we aren’t given the same respect as married/engaged couples then we simply won’t attend. He was torn because he wanted to celebrate his friends’ wedding but didn’t want to cause problems in his own relationship. Eventually we agreed he could attend as long as these “friends” are no longer welcome around us as a couple. 

I was so insulted that I haven’t spoken to the “friends” in question since this incident. My SO speaks to them when I’m not there but we no longer socialize as couples. If we’re at the same party I purposely stay away from them. They’re not welcome in my home so they’re excluded from any parties we host. They won’t be invited to my wedding because they didn’t invite me to theirs. I still question whether the permanent damage to our friendship was worth the money they saved by not inviting me to their wedding. To other brides, I suggest that you choose whether to invite both of a couple or neither – we would still be friends if these people had invited neither of us to their wedding.

Post # 55
Member
260 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

People make cuts in the wedding budget everyday. I’ve seen a lot of excuses for not even providing a meal at a reception to guests because “we simply couldn’t afford it.” Many people just can’t give plus ones to everyone because they have huge families, lots of siblings and cousins, and a big friends groups. Sometimes where you live, there aren’t even halls that have the capacity to manage your entire family + friends AND everyone’s plus one. And in GENERAL, plus ones get expensive period. I would not want a guy I’ve never met, or find to be without morals at my wedding just for the sake of giving a plus one! There are plenty of other people I’d rather give a plus one to before those categories.

Honestly, in my opinion, people who won’t attend weddings alone (when they will know at least a few others there) are insecure and over-dependent on another human being. It’s one day of your life and if you can’t function without another person or have a good time without another person, I feel sorry for you.

For those people saying its an insult to your relationship if the SO isn’t invited, honestly, in the end, your relationship doesn’t need to be recognized or validated by anyone but yourself and your SO. Period.

OP, so instead of attacking you when you have perfectly legitimate reasons for not giving a plus one to her, she should self reflect and see why she so badly needs someone there with her.

Post # 60
Member
319 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 2013

@shan_dyl:  Glad I could help πŸ™‚  I’m impressed you made it through my entire monologue to be honest lol  You’re doing the right thing and I’m sure the girls here on the bee will continue to support you if you have any more troubles with her and you need to vent, I know I’ll be here for ya.  This place probably is better for ranting about wedding stuff/friend struggles/life in general than putting our poor guys through too much of it. lol 

Speaking of moving to England… I’m moving to England from California in November (assuming all of the visa process goes smoothly and we aren’t delayed).  I would be up for grabbing coffee or something when I get there if you’re up for it, it’s always hard to meet new friends when you move to a new place so I know I’ll be keeping my eye out for positive people to hang out with.  There’s another bee who’s an expat in London (Maryaz) who was up for drinks at some point, maybe all three of us could get together sometime πŸ™‚

P.S.  I would be honored for you to print out my reply if that helps you feel better or reminds you that you’re doing the right thing, whatever it takes is what you should do! xD

Post # 61
Member
24 posts
Newbee

A true friend would come alone.  I’ve done it.  I was in the wedding and I didn’t get a plus 1 for my serious bf.  Not coming just because you’d have to come alone… isn’t something a friend would do.  JMO

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