Post # 1
Alright Bees, this isn’t something I like to talk about, but I could really use some feedback.
My parents won’t be at my wedding. Our relationship has been rocky for a while, and my engagment just pushed it over the edge. It’s been a huge drain on all of us, and we’ve gone back in forth in this relationship countless times. We struggle to talk with each other at this point, and there’s not much connection between us currently.
My parents have missed the planning. I found my dress alone. I picked out everything without them. On my wedding day I will be without my mom to help me get ready and calm my nerves. There will be no father walking me down the aisle, nor a shared dance between the two of us.
It’s tragic and needless, but they have informed me they will not attend my wedding. It would be uncomfortable for them at this point, as they don’t really know my fiance and have never met his family, and they can’t be part of this. I’ve cried, I’ve been angry, and I’ve tried to greive this dream in my mind of what my wedding would look like with them there. Now, I’m just trying to keep moving forward. I’m getting married in 25 days, on their wedding anniversary, and I’m determined to remember the good we’re shared as a family and enjoy this day.
Has anyone been through this? Does anything really help? I could really used some support/feedback/encouragement/whatever. This is a tough time and also such a joyus time. It’s hard to find the balance.
Post # 3
@modernriot: ugh I’m sorry about your situation. Is there any way you can mend the relationship since it seems like you want them there? Other then that I donno, I’m not much help.
Post # 4
i’m so sorry that you’re going through this. i can relate to you in some ways because some of my family won’t be attending my wedding due to religious differences. it’s hard but ultimately, the union between you and your FI is just that. it’s about you and your FI joining your lives together in love and happiness. as hard as it is, if someone won’t support or rejoice on your day of love…it’s maybe best that they aren’t there. i’m sorry you’re going through this. i can tell you’re really hurt and for good reason. i hope things look up and your family comes around. chin up, xoxo
Post # 5
@modernriot: I’m sorry you’re dealing with this disappointment OP. I wish I had words of advice, but I can only sympathize. My mom has a very rare, bizarre illness and she never leavea her home now because of what she looks and feels like as a result. I know there’s a good possibility she won’t be able to attend my wedding and it breaks my heart. Best of luck to you- I hope you and your family can sound some peace.
Post # 6
Chin up lady, sometimes people do you a favor and let you know how much they suck, so you don’t have to spend catering money on them. 😉 At this point, my FI’s parents (nor any of his family/extended family) will be coming to our wedding. They don’t support our marriage now that he and I have called them out on their shit, and they called up everyone who received an invitation on their side and smeared us, to make sure no one from his family attends. It’s terrible and shitty. But: it just reinforces how much this day really IS about him and me and the new family we’re creating (that is the concept that made them flip their shit, after all – when we refused to kowtow to be a part of “their” family and said they had to respect us as a new family).
We, as brides/grooms, wish people (especially parents) would be adults. We wish people would put aside their own issues to be supportive or just, not-horrible, during a big time in our lives. But the problem is, big life events like this don’t seem to help people put aside their issues; they strengthen, highlight and ignite issues and personality problems. So my FI’s parents couldn’t help but become MORE controlling until they overplayed their hand. Your parents couldn’t help but be even MORE suck-tastic and self-centered and not able to be there for you. They had time to reach out and get to know your fiance and his family if that’s what they needed to do to support you. If that was important for them to do before the wedding, they knew they were in that time crunch and they’d have to make the effort sooner. They didn’t. They chose to act exactly how they’re acting. That’s on them.
Take time to grieve and don’t think of your wedding day as being on their anniversary. That’s now going to be YOUR anniversary of the day you made your new family. 🙂
Post # 7
@modernriot: First, congrats on finding your mr. right! Your wedding is almost here and this is a very happy time for you even if your parents want to act 100% horrible. I wish you all the best wishes and happy thoughts in the world on your special day. The best advice I have is when you are feeling really sad, mad, and upset about how aweful your parents are being call someone close to you (maid of honor?)vent to them and also tell them that it means the world to you to have them in your life. Try to focus(sometimes may be so hard) on all of the positive/ happy/ helpful/ genuine/loving people you have in your life. On the big day get some important people (an aunt? his mom?) to be there for pictures helping you into your dress. And who is walking you down isle? Someone important? Forget tradition. Dance with someone who means a lot to you and deserves a dance with you on your wedding day. Anyone who would even consider not being there on your day and hurting you so much doesnt derserve these honors. Sometimes the most unexpected people in our lives let us down, sometimes its not that surprising because they’re a-holes. Either way it’s still incredibly hurtful. Use this very hard lesson to be even more grateful for the amazing people in your life, the people who are really good to you, happy for you, and there for you. Best of luck and lots of love!!!
Post # 8
@modernriot: I deliberately didn’t invite either of my parents to my second wedding.
Their behavour during my first wedding made me realise that neither of them were capable of putting their own personal dramas aside, even for one day, to support me.
Was I sorry? Not really, the relief of knowing that I wouldn’t have the day ruined by petty grandstanding outweighed any other feelings.
Post # 9
@modernriot: I am so sorry you are going through this. My cousin’s wife’s family did not attend their wedding because of religious differences. Her only family member to attend was a cousin.
The best I could tell, she still had a wonderful time at her wedding. Instead of her parents and family, friends and my family stepped up to make sure she had a special day. If your relationship with your parents is that fractured, it may be best that they are not attending.
Again, I’m sorry they are behaving so badly.
Post # 10
@modernriot: My mother won’t be attending my wedding for similar reasons. When I invited her, I got a series of hateful emails calling me “spoiled” and listing out why I was a terrible daughter. …just for inviting her to my wedding. Awesome.
My father and my FI’s parents are attending, but none of them seem to give a crap. For months, my dad referred to my wedding as “that thing you want to do.” I know the only reason he’s contributed financially is so my wedding doesn’t look like a joke compared to my cousin’s wedding (AKA it’s a competition between him and his sister). My FI’s dad and stepmom act like our wedding is a giant hassle. Whenever we ask them for (non-financial) help, they go through this whole charade where they make it seem like we’re asking for huge and imposing favors, then ultimately agree in that “we make so many sacrifices to you” tone.
Aaaaaanyway, I found this article early in the stages of wedding planning, and it’s really helped me come to terms with it: The Motherless Bride
I just wanted to let you know that you’re not the only one going through things like this. I don’t really have anyone to turn to for wedding planning stuff that the parents traditionally help with, and it’s rough. To paraphrase the article I linked, your bridesmaids are not your parents, and your groom is not your parents. That sucks to deal with, when you really need someone to fill that role and you come up empty handed.
Post # 11
@modernriot: Oh no, this is sad. Do you still want them there? If so, perhaps you can still salvage the situation? You say them not having met your new parents-in-law is an issue. Why not try and arranged for them to meet now, before the wedding. My parents also hadn’t met my husband’s before as we were living abroad. My dad was keen to meet them, so we all had dinner together the night before. It worked well.
Having had long standing issues with my father, I was really happy and surprised when he totally stepped up for the wedding and actually gave me more help and support than my mum who I’ve always been close to.
Of course I don’t know your situation, but sometimes parents behave like children and you need to be the bigger person and spell it out: ‘I really want you at my wedding, this is a once in a lifetime event and it won’t be the same without you there, you can get to know the new family properly after the wedding etc’.
If however you don’t want them there anymore and/or are worried about how they will behave, then just try and let it go. You can’t choose your parents, but you do choose your husband and you are marrying the man you want to spend your life with – that’s what the day is all about. Get your best mates in with you getting ready instead and have a day of fun and laughter. don’t let them spoil it – it is your parents who will lose out the most by refusing to attend.
Post # 12
I’m in a very similar place as you right now. Basically, my father is so caught up in his religion that I know that he will never be okay with my marriage to a man who doesn’t follow the same religion. My mom, well shes just so self absorbed that she thinks this wedding is the biggest burden on her and is literally doing everything in her power to suck out happiness from everyones lives so they can be as miserable in their lives as she is in hers.
I’m to the point right now where I’m literally ready to cut off communication with my mother. My father and I have never really communicated, and he has sought to control my sister and me through his financial power.
I already felt like announcing my engagement to my family was going to be a nightmare. I almost cried when I did just because I was so afraid of their reaction. We’ve been engaged for almost 6 months now, and things have only gotten worse. My FI’s parents believese that certainly my parents would come around and eventually be happy for us. That hasn’t been the case and I don’t think it ever will be.
I’m conflicted by this daily, which has put a major damper on the wedding. I also get defensive whenever my FI and FI’s family bring up my family because, though I am extremely ambivalent towards them, I dont like feeling like other ppl are judging them. My saving grace has been my sister and my future mother-in-law, who have really helped me through difficult times. My sister is my MOH and I am so happy that she has really stepped up to the plate to communicate between my mother and i and work as a buffer between us.
It’s a horrible situation. I just keep thinking though that a marriage represents the day when you have to put your husband first before your family (and God before him if youre religious at all), and its time that my parents straighten up and stop insulting my FI to me. Sometimes people are incapable of being the more mature party, and we need to learn that no matter how many times we forgive our parents and try to look beyond our past, that they are who they are and theyre not likely to change. We either learn to MANAGE the relationship, or walk away from the negativity. Don’t let their negativity poison your life or ruin your day. It is about you and your FI and the creation of your new family. Nothing else.
Post # 12
I have just found your post from two years ago and can fully relate to it as I am going through this right now. I wonder and am curious as to how your day was and how you look back on it?
I can honestly say the last 18 months or so since I got engaged and more so the last 6 months, have been some of the most stressful of my life. The build up to your wedding should be so special whereas I feel so alone! My wedding is in February in Thailand and then I have a night do in March back at home. My family situation is very dysfunctional around my father and we have never had a good relationship or if we have it’s been inconsistent for all of my life… he has just this last day or let me know via a text message “I won’t be coming”. He wishes me well and hopes we’ll be very happy. This is turn means my mother will not come as she can’t face the questions and embarrassment of him not attending. Do I want to go ahead with this reception now? God only knows. A load of invites have gone out, deposits paid.. I am in such a quandary… I am still trying to make sense of the craziness of it all.
Any advice or chat would be gratefully received..
Post # 13
I have just found your post on here..I can fully relate to what to went through and I am too going through a very difficult time in the run up to my wedding?
How was your day and how do you look back on it? Sadly, the relationship with my parents has always been difficult and inconsistent throughout my life mainly down to my father and I doubt they will be attending. The run up to your wedding should be such a special occasion whereas I feel so alone with it all, the planning, the dress fittings, you name it!
It leaves you feeling heartbroken but at the same time you know you have to pull yourself together.
Any advice or chat then I would be grateful.
(sorry had to re type msg as it said server error but then my prev msg showed up! First time I have used this board I am a novice 🙂
Post # 14
I can relate. My mom effectively pushed me away with her drama and her demands. She’s had her highs and lows, (alcohol has been an issue) and suffice to say, last year she got pissed off at me for having inadvertantly introduced my fiance (then bf) to my friends mom, before her. It didn’t matter that she wasn’t around for him to meet anyways, and I explained to her that he and I had made plans to visit my friends, and the mom (her friend) was there visiting from her home which was 8 hrs away. Had no idea it would cause strife a year later, but I guess in her mind, I usurped some social protocol. A few weeks after that, she was drunk and was calling everyone because I hadn’t picked up my home phone (I keep my ringer off due to shift work – although she had my cell phone number and could have called but did not.) So I didn’t think about checking my msgs on my home phone. And I was working my full time job and going through labs and clinicals as well as it being my finals week for my second last semester of my nursing program. I was exhausted. Since I spoke with her not even two weeks before, plus sent her a card which she would have recieved not to long after that, I thought all was fine. Until I ended up getting a visit from the police at my work. My mom was drunk and called around and claimed that I was missing. Called all my friends. Pulled the same crap. Got a bunch of people worried about nothing. And when I went to call her, she miraculously wasn’t around to take my call. I called her back 30 days later (after I had cooled down) and she played the game of nothing had happened and, ‘I wasn’t drinking etc.” then tried to place blame for her actions on me. She slammed the phone in my ear because she didn’t like what I had to say. I called her back and I told her it was my stepdad that stated she had been drinking, and that I insisted she was to get help otherwise we wouldn’t be having a relationship. Fast forward three months later. I was just proposed to in Texas (yaay!) and back in Canada, getting ready for my final semester of nursing. I get a call a week later (this time on my cell) that my dad had died. They were divorced so my being the only child, I was the only next of kin. I was numb, but took down the contact people she gave me numbers for, and I told her I would call back in an hour or so….. well that was fine, and keep in mind, I was still in shock about my dad. When I called her back, she decided to pull another drama stunt about how she was snooping on my fb page and seen from pics and congratulatory posts that I got engaged and how it ‘tore her heart out’ and how dare I didn’t share it with her, and she demanded (yes her exact words ‘demanded’) that she meet his mom before we start planning the wedding, etc. I was shocked then absolutely horrified. Everything has always been about her. I told her hearing of my dad dying only a few hrs before now with her yellling at me about my keeping my happy news from her was in short ridiculous timing and she was absolutely selfish. She told me that I would never understand a ‘mothers love.’ Uh sorry, I was far from feeling it. I told her under no circumstances would she be a part of my future in any way shape or form if she was drinking. She got angry again and denied her addiction. I realized that on that day it wasn’t just my dad’s passing I would be mourning, but my I would be mourning the loss of the relationship I could no longer have with my mom. So needless to say, yes, sometimes it is better to have boundaries and don’t feel guilty for choices that you need to make for your own peace, happiness and well being of your future marriage.
Post # 15
I know this is an old thread that’s been revived but I just wanted to say that I’m sorry for the Bees going through this right now…getting married to the love of your life should be such a special, happy time so it’s really sad when family issues overshadow it.
I’ve never had a good relationship with my mother (divorced parents) and we’ve barely spoken at all for about 16/17 years. She is not invited to our wedding. Luckily, my father is amazing so more than makes up for her not being around but I have to admit to shedding a couple of tears during the planning process…not because I wish she was involved AT ALL but because I’m mourning something we’ve never had (and never will have). It must be so lovely to have that close bond and a mother beside you helping plan the big day, dress shopping, helping you get ready etc…I envy Bees who have this.
At the end of the day though, the wedding is about you and your husband (to be) and if something or someone is toxic and likely to bring you down, they shouldn’t be there. I’m fortunate that i know our wedding will be filled with love and laughter and we’ll be surrounded by amazing family and close friends. I wish the same for all the other Bees reading this!