Post # 1
I’ll try to make this as short as possible.
Long story short, my mother and I haven’t had a relationship for three years now due to her mental illness and emotional abuse towards me. When she doesn’t get what she wants from someone, she threatens suicide and tries every manipulative tactic there is out there and I got to the point where I wasn’t going to let it affect my mental being.
I’m getting ready to send out save the dates for my wedding and I’m really contemplating whether I should open that door back up. At the end of the day, I really don’t want her there. After everything she’s put me through I have no feelings toward my mother anymore. That may sound bitter, and that’s exactly what I am, bitter. It’s also a defense mechanism I’ve created for myself so that she cannot hurt me anymore. I just don’t want to regret not inviting her or regret not having there later on in life. I also don’t want to invite her and her ruin my one day celebrating me and the love of my life. In an ideal world, I would invite her and she just wouldn’t come. That way I wouldn’t be on pins and needles the day of my wedding worrying that she will cause stress, and I can feel like I did my part and at least tried. Unfortunately there’s no such thing as a half-a** invitation. You either invite someone or you don’t.
Another issue that makes me afraid she will lash out at my wedding is that my father (they are divorced and do not have a good relationship) will be there along with several family friends who have also cut her out of their lives.
Many people are encouraging that I invite her, for “my own sake” but I just don’t think I want her there. She left a voicemail last week telling me that she has nothing to live for and that she just wants to die, and this type of behavior pushes me farther away. She clearly needs to be in a psychatric facility but won’t go.
Any advice is appreciated!
Post # 2
Bg1309: I’m sorry you’re having to deal with this. Only you know how you feel, and no one else should be making this decision for you. If you do not want to invite her, you should not invite her and don’t let anyone make you feel bad about it.
Post # 3
Bg1309: for a long time, conventional wisdom has pushed people with abusive parents to maintain a relationship. But that’s changing now as it has become apparent that the endless cycle of ruined hope followed by devastating self blame is so damaging.
I say if there is a chance she is going to ruin your day, cause you angst, cause you anxiety, remind you of her endless suicide attempts (been there, done that, and I will never do it again), DO NOT INVITE HER.
You have a right to be happy. You don’t owe her anything. Until she gets treatment and apologizes and takes responsibility for her behavior, you do not need to question your right to be free of her emotional tyranny. You can have compassion from afar, but you don’t need to subject yourself to her abuse..
Post # 4
I’m so sorry you are in this situation. My personal feeling is that you should do whatever is going to make you feel happiest in these very difficult circumstances. There are different ways of looking at this – on the one hand if you invite her, there will be enough people there to ‘buffer’ her from you, and you will need to mingle with everyone so your time with her will be minimal. Also, you could ask any siblings/bridesmaids/ushers to keep an eye on her. However, if you think it is going to make you feel anxious or unhappy that she is there, don’t invite her. It’s not worth it – it’s your day to celebrate your love for your partner, there should only be two people that automtically get invited to a wedding, for everyone else it’s a privelege.
I really hope verything works out well for you Bg1309 xx
Post # 5
Don’t invite her! I know it’s brash of me to say that, but do you want the life back you had before?
My Fiance also has an emotionally abusive mother who will use everything against you if you make her mad, even if you’ve done as little as not answer your phone. Luckily, she’s never threatened committing suicide. We haven’t talked to her for almost a year… and there will be others at our wedding that have cut her out of their lives, as well. We didn’t invite her, no matter how much she’s tried to weasel her way back into our lives recently.
How comfortable would you be with her there? How comfortable would your guests be? Is it possible she changed? I would say forego the invitation. A reconnection should happen during lighter times.
Post # 6
“At the end of the day, I really don’t want her there. After everything she’s put me through I have no feelings toward my mother anymore.”
If you feel this strongly about her not being there now, I honestly don’t think you’ll regret it later in life. Furthermore, if you invited her and she came, you would be stressed out about it all day. Then the day becomes about her, not you and your fiance, which is what this joyous occassion is supposed to be all about.
My personal feelings on the matter is that a wedding is about the bride and the groom, and if there is any chance that someone will come and make the day about them, then that person should not be there. Just because you’re blood does not mean your family. No one needs that toxicity in their life.
“and I can feel like I did my part and at least tried.”
Why should you try if she doesn’t? I’m a firm believer in “you get what you give” and if she’s not trying to better her abuse towards you, than why should you give her the chance to continue her bad behavior. I think you did the right thing by cutting her out, and it should stay that way unless she makes a tremendous effort to change and shows improvement.
Good luck OP!
Post # 6
Bg1309: If you don’t want her there, have no relationship with her, and you feel she’ll make a scene..I would not.
Post # 8
Bg1309: I have a lot of mental illness in my family too. It sucks — sorry you’re in that same boat. Is there any reason why you’re sending Save-The-Date Cards out 14 months in advance though? That’s REALLY early even for a Destination Wedding, and especially when you’re conflicted on whether or not to invite your mom. Save-The-Date Cards are not required, but once you do send one, you’re pretty much locked in to inviting those who got one. You could buy yourself some time by not sending her an STD, but if she starts hearing about others getting one, she’ll understandably be confused and upset. It’s much more typical to send Save-The-Date Cards at 6 out and that’s what I recommend you do. Maybe reach out (without mentioning the wedding) and see how she responds. If it’s the same old same old, you’ll feel better about not inviting her. If she seems reasonable, as the time gets closer, you’ll have a better idea of whether you’d like to invite her or not.
Post # 9
Daisy_Mae: I’m not sending thm out or another two months, and yes, its a Destination Wedding. I plan to ivite her sisters and her mother so she would definitely find out.
Post # 10
Daisy_Mae: for another two months*
Post # 11
For what it’s worth, I invited my mentally ill, abusive, alcoholic dad to my wedding. We hadn’t spoken (except over the phone once) for over 5 years. He told me that he’d love to go, and I’d even limited the amount of alcohol purchased so he couldn’t have access to get drunk and ruin things. I thought it was time to give him another chance at being in my life, and I was cautiously excited about seeing him after so long.
He didn’t show up. My mom called his house that night and heard from his girlfriend that he had a funeral, or some other made-up place, to attend instead.
Only you can decide whether to invite your mom or not. Think about it and do what’s best for you. And remember, if she starts repeating her past behavior to you in the remaining time until the wedding, you can uninvite her. Etiquette is not all it’s cracked up to be, especially when you’re dealing with an abusive parent. And who knows, she might accept the invitation and bail on you anyway.
Post # 12
BalletParker: THIS x1000..
Go with your gut on this one OP, only you can determine what will make you the most happy, content and the least stressed or not worried.
Post # 13
Bg1309: Wow, I could have written this myself. My wedding is in 9 days. I did not invite my mother and she is threatening to show up anyways. As a child of a severely mentally ill parent, and as a mental health professional by practice, I would say to set healthy boundaries that keep you and your significant other happy and healthy. You are under no obligation to invite anyone, blood relative or not. At the end of the day it is about you marrying the person you love, and if you think she will ruin your day then she doesn’t have to be there. Good luck! xo
Post # 14
hl17burc: Good for you for not inviting her! I’m hoping I can do the same and just ignore everyone telling me that I should. Do you have other family on your mom’s side that you invited? If so, did they make it a big deal about you not inviting her? I’m not extremely close with my mom’s family because they don’t agree with me not speaking to her (because they all choose to enable her behavior and make themselves miserable) but I still plan to invite most of them and want them there, I just know she’s going to flip her s*** on me and on them if they’re invited and she’s not. How are you dealing with her threats of showing up (if you don’t mind me asking)?
Post # 15
Don’t invite her. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t “owe” it to her. Only have people around you who life you up and are positive. If she is not one of those people, she doesn’t deserve to be there.