The drama-minimizing guide to not inviting family members to your wedding

Updated Sep 27 2019
Photo courtesy of Flickr Commons.
Photo courtesy of Flickr Commons.

Ug. This is a post no one wants to write, but that definitely needs to be written. Most of us really do wish our weddings could be sweet celebrations of love and family, commitment and community. Unfortunately, for a whole bunch of legitimate reasons ranging from addiction to abuse, crime to communication problems, some of you are going to face the challenge of not inviting certain family members (or ANY family members) to your wedding.

It's going to suck. Obviously, no one article can work for every tangled family situation, but let's see if we can help you make it suck a little less.

Be sure

We're not going to get into why you're not inviting given family members. We're just going to assume that you feel you've got a really, truly legitimate reason. It's not our place to judge the legitimacy, and ultimately it doesn't matter: if you feel it strongly, then that's your decision to make. You just need to be sure. Really, really sure. Talk to your partner. Talk to your friends. Possibly even talk to a counselor. This is going to be hard, so you need to be completely solid in your decision.

Be accountable

Once you've made the decision, you need to hold yourself completely accountable. This is not about what the other person did to you. This is about you feeling like you're making the best decision you can for yourself and your wedding.

As always, you can't control other people or their behavior. You can only control and take responsibility for your reaction. If not inviting family members feels like the best solution for a toxic situation, that's cool… but don't make it about what they did. Own your reaction, and be accountable for the fact that the decision not to invite family is going to hurt people's feelings, full stop. (Even if you think they hurt you first, it doesn't matter. The decision not to invite someone is all on you.)

Be honest

The worst thing you can do when there's drama approaching is propagate it by not being up-front in addressing it. Yes, it's going to suck, but you can't put it off. You need to confront the situation quickly and directly. Don't put it off, and don't use platitudes. You likely do not ever need to contact someone to tell them they're not invited to your wedding, but if they or another family member ask you about an invitation, we suggest you use straight-forward, un-charged language. Here are a few examples:

  • "I'm not comfortable having you/them attend our wedding. I'm sorry, but my decision has been made."
  • "I understand this will probably be upsetting, but I've made the difficult decision not to invite you/them to our wedding. I'm just not comfortable with you/them being there. I'm sorry."

If you want to discuss why you're not inviting the person, by all means do — but make it clear that the decision is final. We also fully support just drawing a boundary:

  • "It's hard for me talk about the reasons behind the decision, because they're emotional and painful. At this point, my decision has been made and it is final. I'm sorry. I'm done talking about this."

Stand your ground

When other family members hear that you're not inviting someone, they may threaten not to attend your wedding. As one Offbeat Bride Tribe member shared:

Do not cave to emotional blackmail, do not cave and fight with people over this — this is your choice and you have to stand firmly by it. "I'm sorry you won't be there but that's your decision" is your mantra, your rock, your hard place and your go to reply. If you can't not cave, don't start this. I cannot stress that enough.

My policy is to discuss my decision once with a person — and then no more. If someone presses, I give them a warning: "I am not going to talk about this any more." Then end the conversation if the warning is not heeded: "Well, I have to go now. Love you, talk to you later."

Refuse to fight over it

If someone starts debating your decision, give them a warning that it's not something you want to discuss. If they don't respect that, then politely end the conversation. Don't get triggered into arguing or rehashing old wounds. It's not worth your time. If your decision has made, then all fighting over it accomplishes is wasting time and energy better spent elsewhere. Be loving, but be firm.

If someone starts fishing for an invitation, politely refuse to do battle. Simply state that the person will not be receiving an invitation, and then respectfully decline to answer further questions.

  • "This has been a really difficult decision, but it's one I feel very firmly about. I don't want to talk about it any more, I'm sorry."

Focus on the family you ARE inviting

In getting ready for the wedding, focus on the people who you DO know love and support you. Find friends and family who you can count on and spend some time thinking about how awesome that is. Thank those who are involved in your life and find ways to recognize what they mean. You could even add a bit to your ceremony telling them that if they were there, they are family.

Try to minimize times that would highlight your family not being present, if possible. Be aware of all wedding moments where both families are usually included, and find ways to feel good about your friends and/or partner's family stepping in, or consider to minimize the family moments.

Allow yourself to grieve

It can be hugely valuable to take the time to acknowledge and grieve the loss of an important relationship (or any huge disappointment), regardless of how it happens. Yes, make this wedding your own and celebrate what you have, but also acknowledge to yourself that you are grieving some lost relationships, and that grieving will be an important part of letting go and moving on.

Be compassionate

Yeah, this is going to suck. Yeah, you're going to find yourself in truly awful conversations that could dredge up a lot of painful family history. But challenge yourself to find as many ways as possible to be loving, appreciative, and gracious in your conversations about not inviting family.

If family members push to come to the wedding, consider whether you're open to repairing your relationship with them separately from their attending the wedding. Obviously, estrangement is always an option — and in some situations, it may be your best option. Ultimately, there are relationship dynamics here that are much larger than just a wedding invitation, and it's worth considering carefully whether, once your wedding is over, you want to leave the door open to reconciliation.

Seek help

In certain situations, there may be issues like restraining orders involved. In some cities, the local family court may have helplines or a help desk where you can ask for legal advice related to extreme situations like restraining orders.

We'd love to hear from couples who've got through this challenge — what methods did you use to minimize drama? What language did you use to talk to both those who were not invited, as well as those who WERE invited and upset by your decisions?

  1. There's some really great advice going on here and I could use a dose. In a very long convoluted story, I'm being told to invite my ex-husband to my wedding. One of the multitude of reasons I'm being given is so that he can be supportive of our children, ages 23 & 17, who are crazy happy about my fiancée and will be my attendants. Another reason is that the ex and I are still part of the same Wiccan circle and not inviting him will be harmful to our community. I think it's not fair to my fiancée and totally inappropriate for the ex to be invited, much less actually attend. But it feels like the only people who are agreeing with my viewpoint are my fiancée and kids.

    Suggestions?

    • I can understand where the hesitation and wish to put your FH firmly in the spotlight comes from and it is a choice that the two of you need to make together – no matter the opinions of others.

      To play the Devil's advocate, have you discussed the situation and your feelings with your ex directly?

      If you two can share a Wiccan group/circle and remain on speaking and working terms, then I would imagine that you can have this conversation with him about it.

      If you opt to not have him attend the ceremony, would giving him the opportunity to attend the reception be an alternate option – to pacify your busy-bodies and let the kids get a nice picture with him.

      I found that biting the bullet on the close association non-invite was much more effective than trying to ignore the elephant in the room. My good friend (who is also my FH's ex of 4 years) always assumed that she would be one of my maids, but I didn't want to deal with the drama and potential hurt of someone else thinking that I was attempting to hurt her or worse his family being extra hateful to her.

      You have to do what feels right to you, but you may find out that he's dreading being invited – just as much as you don't want to invite him.

  2. My wedding day is nowhere near, nor am I even engaged. But I struggle with the thought regularly that in order to have a stress free wedding where I can truly be happy I will have to give up having my dad walk me down the isle as my step monster has always come before my sister and I.

  3. Im looking to exclude my step mom. My entire life we did nothing but fight. Oil and water and I know that it would really upset my mom and probably all 5 of her brothers to see this woman there and I would do nothing but worry about it all day. I think it would cause me stress to know that my mother has to face the woman who was sleeping with my dad. It also brings to the fact that I want my parents to sit up front in the ceremony together leaving my step mom sitting alone and she likes to cause drama and would probably try to convince my dad not to sit with my mom. I haven't spoken to this woman In 5 years. She doesn't know me. She doesnt know my fiance. So to me she's a stranger who happened to marry my father. I know this will hurt my dad but the good of the many. I don't want to hurt my mom and i don't want to deal with drama or worry about potential drama. However i know not inviting her will be a whole other set of drama but im just gonna have to take that one phone call at a time and stand my ground.

  4. This was a great article to read. We are in a similar situation of wanting to exclude certain family members. It's a little bit strange, but I have known a large portion of my fiancée's family for many years, before I even knew he existed. His father, stepmother and their three kids accepted me into their family and they were always "Uncle John and Auntie Brannuen". Their oldest daughter was a bridesmaid at my first wedding, and their second daughter was a groomsmaid. Anyway, fast forward several years, and I am divorced from my first husband, and run into the oldest daughter at a party. She introduces me to her older half-brother. The man with whom I ended up falling in love, moving in with, and am now planning to marry.

    Here's the problem. Very early in our relationship, said older daughter decided that she didn't approve of our relationship (yes, in spite of the fact that she pretty much set us up), and really didn't like the fact that the two of us had become very well liked and popular in a social circle she considered to be "hers". And she tried to dictate the rules of our relationship and how we interacted with "her" friends. When that didn't work, she launched a very public and slanderous campaign against us both, though it was mostly targeted at me, calling us both liars and me a lot of choice other things when we explained the truth to this circle of friends. The situation snowballed, and some things were said and done that were very hurtful on both sides, and basically no one on that side of my fiancée's family is speaking to me. I still have tenuous contact with the stepmother and second daughter (father passed away about 5 years ago).

    Now that we are engaged and planning a wedding, this is a very difficult situation for me. I want very much to invite my "Aunt" and her two younger children. As does my fiancée. I do not want to include the oldest half-sister or her husband (he makes me very uncomfortable, to the point where I fear for my personal safety when I am around him). I'm pretty sure that none of that side of the family will go unless they are all invited.

    What makes things even worse is something that my future stepmother-in-law said to my fiancée recently at a memorial/burial service for his dad; she said to my fiancée in no uncertain terms "You will make peace in this family so that we can all come and celebrate your wedding." I have no intention of apologizing for a wrong I did not do, nor will I just pretend like nothing ever happened and that everything is all okay, just so there can be "peace in the family". I also really don't want the oldest half-sister to start drama and behave in a rude, sullen, and hostile manner (which she will, as she has at every other social occasion where we have had to share space) on what is supposed to be a day filled with love and joy. I just have to accept the strong possibility of having no one from that family attending our wedding, and be able to console my fiancée whom I know is crushed by all this.

  5. I chose to not invite one particular relative to my wedding, and I did speak with my parents first, who fully supported me in my decision. Nothing more was said or asked about it. Sometimes, people choose to no longer be in someone's life. I accepted that he chose not to be in mine, so I chose to not be in his.

  6. I am having huge problems with this situation right now. I had sent out the Save the Dates, and on them said "please no children at the wedding." My brother got so irate about such a simple thing (even though the venue has a babysitting service, and he isn't the only guest we've invited who has kids) so now instead of having the constant worry about them still bringing my niece I'm thinking about just not inviting any of them.
    I understand the ways to break it to them (though I don't plan on telling them…I'll just wait for them to bring it up). But my brother is relentless, I have such a bad feeling that even if I say "it breaks my heart, but this is the decision that me and my FH have reached" it won't be good enough for him. There's no way that he won't make me feel like a complete pile of crap, and he's good about doing that too. It's just his wife and daughter cause so much drama…and I really don't need that on my wedding day. My niece doesn't understand how to behave and they don't reinforce discipline.
    I'm just in a huge "lose-lose situation" with this…but I have the feeling I will just have to be the bad-guy bouncer bride and tell him that it's the decision we made and he'll just have to get over it.
    He's so upset about the "no kid rule"…yet we weren't even invited to his own wedding…and when we showed up for their 10 year anniversary vow renewal we weren't even thanked or felt welcome…this is a nice example of "pot calling kettle black" I think….

    • If he didn't invite you to his wedding, why are you inviting him to yours? As a oreviously uninvited you have every right to revenge.

  7. I am watching, and hearing the struggling that my daughter is going through right now making out that dreaded list. It makes my heart ache. So many on it that will most likely bring unneeded drama. I pray she learns something from this article. That it is important to keep the drama away. If that means keeping the venue, and time of the celebration secret so that others don't know. Or even NOT inviting that grandmother, uncle, drunken father, and cousins that don't know how to act. This is YOUR day. Your wedding day. Drama does not need to be there at all. The only feelings should be of celebration and love for the joining of those 2 people. If you are having to warn people to stay away from each other. Or having to struggle with who can sit with whom at a table….you are making a stressful event even more stressful than it needs to be. Just don't invite them. If they love you, and care, they will respect your wishes and stay at home. They won't just threaten to show up whether you like it or not. That isn't loving, that is demanding, and selfish. I love my daughter. I would do anything for her. Help her with her dress, decorating, even cater. Anything to help her with this wedding. If she asked me to step aside. Yeah, it would hurt like crazy, but out of love for her. I would do so. Why? Because it is HER day. Not mine.

  8. One way that we are handling this issue is to only invite people who are playing an actual part in our day. For example: My crazy hippie aunt? She's doing our flowers. My best friend's/matron's of honor mom & dad? He's officiating, she's in charge of our brunch reception. This kept our guest list to the smaller size (around 50) that we prefer, AND it provides a simple answer for those who aren't invited. Only immediate family is invited (brother, parents, grandparents) unless they play a specific part in our day – that alone adds up to almost half of our list once you include spouses and families, so that is why we came to this decision. There are a few aunts, uncles, & their kids who aren't invited, but they would be unhappy either way.

  9. Don't forget sometimes the 'Uninvited for No reason' family members. If the wedding is small, fine, say it. Budget? Ok. But have the guts to say something! I was NOT invited to a family members wedding, when the rest of my (immediate) family was. After Months of anguish from Mom (especially since my brother had just gotten married and had a second reception back home for the people who couldn't attend) the months long silence made the whole thing worse and worse by the day, until now, I am pretty angry at my family for staying quiet and not asking questions when I asked them too, and the to-be-married family member is grumpy with me for NOT asking why I hadn't been invited, when my family said to 'not rock the boat'!

    Honesty and Open Communication matters!!

  10. Thank you for this story. I have had a massive falling out with my grandmother to the point where I, and my fiancé , told her to stay out of my life and that she's not welcome at our wedding.

      • No, not necessarily. In my case, I'd be more shocked to see a wedding photo with my grandmother in it, since she was willingly there for so little of my life despite the fact that we lived in the same town.

  11. I am so glad that I found this. I am going back and forth on whether or not to invite my SIL and my fiancee's brother to our wedding. We all never got along. We have been a part of a six year long feud . Part if it started because my husband and his brothers grandparents. There seems to be a competition as to whose kids get more time with them. When my hubby and I are with his grandparents, my SIL will call multiple times with a crisis. "One of the kids are sick" "I am so sad that my Army reserves husband is leaving me for weekend duty with four kids" Whatever it is the grandparents neglect my family to rescue hers. I want my day to be all about me. I am conflicted because she is passive aggressive and the expert victim. Therefore, she has half the family convinced that I bullied on her when in fact I am actually acting out about her attention seeking behavior. I just got on good terms with the entire family again over this. I have promised them that I will not war with her anymore. If I don't invite her I am afraid I will look petty and that she will use this to start it all over again. I am afraid that if I do invite her then she will have another crisis to take the attention from my day.

    • You will look petty, and be blamed restarting the war. Invite her. Find a babysitter to follow her through the wedding and sidetrack problems.

  12. Thank you so much for writing this! I'm trying to figure out if I invite my emotionally absent, manipulative and homophobic parents to our wedding. My partner and my partner's family keep saying no, my sister (who has a VERY different relationship with them) wants me to invite then, and I'm having a really hard time figuring out what on earth to do. Having them there will result in breakdowns and fights. Not having them there will be a lot of tears in advance, but also the opportunity to celebrate with the people who do truly love me and my partner. Beautiful advice, I just need to own the real problem: I do not feel comfortable having them there.

    • Don't do it!! This is about you and your partner. Why have people there that don't agree that will judge. Don't feel obligate. If they reach out to you wanting to support your day then maybe consider it. You can't make Everyone happy.

  13. I'm not inviting certain negative family members and have no problem with them Not coming. However my boss mentioned if I invite one person from our team I should invite them all. Pff! The nerve of her, she not paying for my wedding to tell me who I should n shouldn't invite. My finace not even inviting any co workers. Plus my venue is small. I have no problem telling people why they can't come.

  14. First thank you for the helpful article and comments, I appreciate the support. I've seen many posts about family you don't want coming to the wedding, but what about estranged family members that you still have a relationship with? My dad cut off all contact with his relatives as soon as he turned 18, but my mom made sure that I saw them on holidays (I'm pretty sure without his consent). I'm not especially close with them, but I like most of them and they have supported me and my SO when and how they can, like including him in wedding invites. However, my SO and I understand my dad's reasons for not wanting any contact with them, including at our wedding, and we care more about respecting my dad's wishes than my relatives. I just wish I didn't have to pick and choose like this, since there's no way to do this without hurting anyone. I'm thinking about having a special dinner for them without my dad in lieu of inviting them to the ceremony and reception. Anyone done anything like this before? Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!

    • A special dinner is not a wedding – definitely 2nd best. Tell your Dad to suck it up. He is an adult.

  15. So I am having a very particular non inviting issue. My sister has asked me not to invite one of our uncles for what turned out to be a very good reason. But I still want to invite our aunt(his wife). She is very dear to me and I can't imagine my big day without her. But I also need my sister there and she can't be around my uncle. How do I go about this tactfully?

  16. There are a few people from my family that won't be invited, including my dad, grandmothers and my older sister. I won't be letting them know either. If they need a reason why, then they have all forgotten my entire life. My fiance's sister also won't be invited. We both know that his mother is going to flip when she finds out. Neither of us like her, we've tried to be friends but she is arrogant, ignorant, nasty and uneducated. She is not the kind of person we want to be around, much less at our wedding. His mother is pretty fake when it comes to family. She trys to pretend we are all a big happy family, like a commercial. We aren't. My fiance and I have no interest in being fake or lying. inviting her would be nothing but trouble. Especially since we don't want children at our wedding either and she has a son. We've been screwed over enough that we have built a shield

    • Remember, you are going to have to live with these people and the rest of the family for a long time. Make it adult only; maybe that one won't come.

  17. I know this is an old post, but any advice on how to deal with not inviting a family member when it is over an issue not everyone in the family knows about? In this case, it is abuse, and the person it happened to has chosen to only tell certain family members (and is not my place to disclose this info). If I suddenly don't invite the family member with no explanation, shit will hit the fan with my family members who do know and those who don't know will probably just be confused and angry at me. Very strange situation that stresses me out.

    • I have a very similar situation. My younger sisters and I dealt with abuse from our father for basically the entirety of our childhood. It has just recently come out to our mother, and while she is pursuing charges, no one else knows. I definitely don't want him at my wedding, but I do want the rest of his family there (my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins). But how do you not invite him without it all going to hell? I'm afraid they will all be so angry with me over something they know nothing about. For this very reason, I'm considering eloping, even though I know it would make my fiance's family so upset. I can't win.

    • Exact same issue in my family, my sister was abused by my uncle and the family didn't know our entire childhood. Only recently in our late 20's has she slowly told some of our aunts who are devastated but trust that she is getting through it in the way she needs to – supporting her in the ways they can. The uncle was married to my aunt who is my mom's sister. They've recently divorced so it might be easy to not have him invited. I LOVE this aunt – like crazy. She's become like a second mom to me. I still see it possibly becoming an issue but because the family knows but it's not discussed openly, maybe they'll just be silent. Also, even before the family found out, no one really liked this uncle anyway – could be a non-issue.

      Regardless, I'm sticking to my decision of not having him there. When I send out the invites, all 4 of my aunts will get their invites. Only one of the 4 is married and I like that uncle so I'll invite him. (he's also helped me move in college and has been there for me in different ways – so he makes the list). I suppose I'll just specifically write who exactly is invited and trust that adults will react like adults. If they don't, I'll ignore their behavior and/or explain unapologetically that it's my decision and I hope they can respect the difficulty of the task at hand (i.e. the guest list).

  18. I know this post is a year old, but my *god* did I need it today. We just found out we're likely going to have to get married before we move next year or risk having my boyfriend move back to Canada every few months. I wasn't planning on getting married, especially after my mother and grandfather died within a few weeks of each other in December, but it looks like it's happening, and we're starting to look forward to it, despite everything.

    My mother's sister has been a huge disappointment to our family in the last few years. She has always lived in rural areas and about 10 years ago moved about an hour outside of town, and used that as an excuse to rarely visit or call my grandparents, even on major holidays. After my grandma died, my grandpa needed his family around him more than ever and she would only stop by once or maybe twice a year, leaving the extensive care of him up to my uncle and my mother (who had had three strokes). My family was very close and my grandfather was devastated that she wouldn't visit him or call, or even send him a card on his birthday (she makes cards for a living). She never visited my mother or my grandfather when they were in the hospital- even when my grandfather was in rehab for over a month.

    She didn't show up to her sister, my mom's visitation (she came to the funeral the next day though), has been in contact with my uncle only to find out when we can sell my grandparents' house so she can collect her money (she says she has some outstanding debts to settle), and the only words she said to me at my mom's funeral was "Do you miss her?". My sister and I didn't say a word to her at my grandfather's funeral, though we weren't unpleasant. My sister and I have written her off as a selfish, clueless jackass, but have been pleasant as we can to her in public because my uncle is still trying to keep in contact with his only family member and I'm friendly with my cousin, her daughter.

    I'd like to invite my cousin and her partner to my wedding, especially as someone for my uncle to talk to, but I don't know if she'll come if no one else in her immediate family is invited. I don't want to create any family drama, as I was invited to my aunt's kids' weddings, but I hate how she treated my mom and grandparents and don't respect her at all.

    Whew! Felt kind of good to get that all out, actually. Not sure what we'll do, but agree that with commenters who say "I'm sorry" isn't something that's on the table. She's made no effort to explain her position to any of us, she's a self-involved, pretentious, ungrateful person and I have no desire to have her at my wedding. Best case scenario? She keeps ignoring us as per usual and we never have to deal with confrontation.

    • That sounds like you made the right decision not to invite her. I think you can still invite her kids. I personally don't believe that they should be punished for her horrid behaviour. So if you want to invite them do and if anyone asks just say that you feel upset with her about how she treated your grandparents. End of drama. Then people can take it or leave it.

      At least that's what I did.

      • Thanks for the vote of confidence, Tessa – these things are so fraught with tension and meaning it's hard to know how to proceed – especially when I'm normally a very drama-free person. I like your no-nonsense approach. It's a weird thing being an adult – suddenly I realize I'm not really beholden to all these people just because we share a bloodline.

    • Sounds like she is self isolating – may be a symptom of depression. Needs medical help, not rejection.

      • If she does, she's very selective about it. She's the head of her classic car group and they take trips and outings all summer. She has a home business that takes her to shows and stuff all the time. Honestly, I'm sure there's something psychologically wrong there, but I have no desire to reach out to someone who has been absent when our family needed her most. She can continue to drop friends when it's convenient and head off to social events instead of family gatherings but I don't have to applaud it.

  19. So I know this is an old post, but it's reassuring to know that I'm not the only one dealing with this and I thought I'd put in my two cents.

    I have a relative who is toxic, spiteful, abusive and a narcissist who has never been able to attend any family function without doing everything possible to make sure all the attention is on her. She's also a self-proclaimed 'proud bigot' who used racial slurs in front of my FH the first time she met him, not knowing what his own feelings on the matter were (very much against them). Whenever I was direct about disliking that growing up, she would attempt to make me feel like crap for it. My FH and I both strongly dislike her and knew there was no way we wanted her anywhere near the wedding, although she naturally expected an invite.

    Luckily, our wedding is going to be super small, so we were able to (truthfully) say that due to the size of the venue and our limited budget, we would only be inviting immediate family and close friends. While I would have loved to be more direct, unfortunately personal circumstances didn't allow for it. In the run up to that, there was a lot of panic attacks, crying and agonizing on my part, but ultimately it was really freeing to make a decision to make FH and I happy and not worry about everyone else. Oh sure, I've had to deal with the ensuing emotional blackmail and passive-aggressive Facebook statuses, but it feels great to know that we'll be celebrating our big day without having to worry about what this woman is going to say or do to ruin it.

  20. I'm currently planning a wedding, and this has been the hardest, but most liberating decision. All my life I have struggled with my relationships with my family. I always thought there was something wrong with me. When my mom died, it was me and my dad. My sister's were from my mom's previous marriage, so they kept us in the loop for a while. But they have always had issues with my Dad. He's not a bad guy, socially awkward, yes, but not a bad guy. Anyways, between my one sister who will "tease you only if she likes you" and my other sister that lectures but never listens, I was never comfortable with my family. On top of all that my Mom's sister never really liked my dad, so she has been giving him a hard time ever since. She was told a while ago by my sisters that we're a package deal. She doesn't get them if she won't have my dad and I. Well, at first I was glad they said that, but now I know that I don't want to be some place I'm not wanted. Besides, if you would think that after the passing of her sister, she would want to reach out and get to know ALL her nieces. But I was my Dad's kid, the same age as her kids (which swear and curse at every family occasion, even though she calls herself the "church lady"), oh, and I didn't just have a baby. And with my cousins and nieces and nephews it has only gotten worse. I can tell that my aunt and my oldest sister has said negative things about my dad and I in front of them. I've tried to connect with my niece, but there is something there, and at first I thought it was just awkward teen syndrome, but my fiance noticed it too, that she only acts that way around me and my dad. Distant, and weirded out. My sister blames my dad for never coming to his granddaughters birthdays, but she never made it easy. We got invitations the week of, and sometimes only on Facebook. My dad doesn't go on Facebook! But yet my sister I insisted that it was all on my Dad. She never even brought my niece up to visit. Maybe once or twice, but she always brought her to my aunts. My cousins on the other hand have been awful. Even when we were little, the oldest one told me that she hated me. I've tried, but it's not worth it anymore. I've been thankful for my fiance, because he saw their behavior towards me, and tried to help, but was able to confirm that they just don't like me. It didn't help that my sisters teased me all the time in front of them. Their respect towards me as a person is gone. So, yea, that was my life. I was prepared to live with it, until my middle sister had lost her job and moved back in with me and my dad. At first it was okay, I thought "here is my chance to bond with my sister", but then it was just drama. He would ask her to clean up her dishes, or at least put them in the dishwasher. She would then talk to me about how mean he was being. I tried to reason with her, but she didn't see it that way. In the year that she lived here, she broke my futon couch, several dishes, and left Tupper ware full of food under her bed. Actually, it was Tupper ware that I bought dad, for the house, because he buys it and it always goes missing.
    He just threw it out. He tried really hard to not upset my sister. He constantly asked me how to deal with her. No matter how nice he was, she always looked at him like he was being a jerk. He did ask her to pay rent, but a few months went by and she said she couldn't afford it. My dad said they could figure something out, and then she up and went on a $600 vacation with my other sister and their friends. She had left one job for another, then lost that one. Then she had some medical complications and had to go to the hospital. They put her in a rehab facility, but wanted to bring her back to our house. They brought her by one day to check out if it was possible. It wasn't. Aside from all the modifications needed to my dad's small ranch house (made before 90 degree angles were invented…I kid but there isn't a perfect corner anywhere in this house) she would also need assistance getting around and doing things. Dad works, and I work. There would be no one home for her. So Dad made the call. He said it wasn't safe and there would be no way we could make the house the way it needed to be. Even the med staff agreed. So instead of understanding that and looking at other solutions, both my sister's cut my Dad out. They say that they can't forgive him for the "horrible" stuff he has done. I've tried so hard to figure if there is something I can't see, but it's making me doubt my dad. He hasn't done anything wrong that I know of. And he's tried so hard, it isn't fair for him to endure all this. He's old, and he had been through so much: Navy Veteran, lost a wife, just lost his mom, and has had to deal with this cruel set of people so that I would have a family. They'd make fun of him right in front of him. And he never knew it because he's socially awkward and doesn't understand that stuff. And I have been ridiculed for being his daughter and being like him. He raised me, of course I may be a bit like him! So after all this, I think I am making the right decision. I don't want to be at my wedding wondering what they are saying about my dad. Sorry if this was long. If you read it, do you mind giving me some feedback? My heart is breaking, because it shouldn't be this way. I should want my family at my wedding, but I don't. 🙁

  21. I am very happy to have found this website. I understand things more clearly now.

    My wife became adulterous and she split. A year later, my oldest daughter got married…but I found out about it by someone at work congratulating me on her wedding. I had not been invited, or even told about the wedding. This hurt me deeply.

    The hurt grew deeper when I discovered that everyone on the mother's side of the family, including the adulterers, were invited. The adulterer paid for the wedding, too. My other two daughters participated as bridesmaids, but were sworn to secrecy to keep the event from me.

    Consequently, I have estranged myself from my daughters. I never want to see or hear from them again. It is sad…so very sad, and the pain is likely to drive me mad…as I was the innocent and faithful one in the family. I was a great husband and father, and to be treated like this has destroyed me. I am a different person now. I am cynical and live alone. I feel bitter and hateful.

    Yet, thanks to your article, I now understand why my daughter made the decision she did to invite everyone but me. To me, it seems extremely selfish. She could have sent a clear message to EVERYONE on the mother's side of the family that ADULTERY will not be tolerated and those that embrace the unrepentant adulterer shall not be invited to a holy ceremony and a blessed sacrament.

    In my opinion, the kiddo blew it…just so she could have the perfect wedding. But how perfect could it have been? I was not there to walk her down the aisle. And then, there should have been questions. "Where's Brian? Why isn't he here?" I imagine that everyone who knew I was uninvited lied through their teeth to explain. In telling the truth, they would have had to reveal that the still married mother was an adulterer, and the guy she was with was an adulterer, too.

    To me, she and her sisters are sell-outs. We have nothing in common other than our DNA. That is reason enough to estrange myself from them.

    • My guess is that your daughters feel that their mother was justified in her actions by something you don't recognize in your behavior; perhaps something that interacts with their personalities in a negative way, and may not be a problem with others. Your daughters and wife have built a new family with the current spouse, and don't want the fairyland disturbed by your presence. Everyone knows the adultery was wrong, but it is easy to set aside in fairyland. You and your daughters need family counseling. You need each other in the long term.

  22. I will not be inviting my parents and all other family members associated with them as I wouldn't want to place extra guilt on them. Both my parents are narcissist and if they'd come, they would find every way to split our marriage if I don't be a slave to their control. And if it is, it would've been their wedding and not mine. They would probably blame me for not inviting them anyways like they've done my whole life. Example: During my convocation, my "father" said clearly to everyone that it was all his effort, while it was me who was going to pay for my tuition fee.

  23. I know that I am late coming into this conversation but I am so thankful that I found this website. My HTB and I have been together for 6 and a half years and we are finally going to be getting married. I am totally happy that we will finally be getting married but I know there is some heart ache involved in us planning this wedding. I am not inviting any of his family because of how they have treated me and I am not inviting any of my family because I do not wish to be embarrassed by their behavior as has been a problem in the past. I wish that things could some what be different but I have to agree with most of the things I have been reading online your wedding day is about the couple making a commitment to each other and if inviting or letting someone know that you are going to be getting married and it is just going to make the day horrible then don't invite them. My HTB and I are the only two paying for our wedding so ultimately it is up to us. I wish everyone the best of luck on their big day though no matter what.

  24. We have decided to not invite my brother. I waver on my choice often, but seeing as we have been engaged for three months now and he hasn't said congratulations (me, my feef and my folks reached out to him to try to tell him before posting on social media, but he refused to respond to any attempt to contact him), and we have now seen each other with still not a congratulations (or even acknowledgment) from him- I really feel like I'm making the right choice. If he isn't happy for us, then I don't want him to be there.
    A lot has gone wrong in my relationship with my brother, and as far as I know, my whole family knows that our relationship is strained at best. Sometimes, I'm not sure, but mostly just because he's my brother and I always wanted to celebrate with my family and friends, and I'm not sure really how I can possibly look at my wedding pictures without him in them. I'm not angry, I'm sad. I think if someone asked me about it, I would probably just start crying.

    • Invite him for your own sake. You will miss him the in pictures later. What if he is struck by lightening and killed shortly after the wedding date?

  25. My fiance and I have been together for 11, going on 12 years. We were on great terms with his family for 8 years, we all seemed to have a genuine concern for one another, despite our differences in life choices. We ended up having a falling out with his siblings 8.5 years into our relationship, where they jumped to conclusion, and assumed some terrible things about us. It felt like an attack, and a huge betrayal. We initially tried to put in some effort to reconcile our relationship with them, but they continuously met us with negativity and spiteful actions, talking poorly to us, behind our backs, and pretty much performed a character assassination on us. It has come to the point that we had to quit trying for our well being and mental health, because we were continuously met with spiteful actions, drama, negativity, and no way to have a reasonable conversation. We are now engaged, and are planning a destination wedding. If I had it my way, we would all get along, and have his siblings their to support us, but in reality, they don't..and they're genuinely not happy or supportive. They lack respect in general, and my fiance and I have talked about this multiple times. I feel like if they could be their to support his brother, and we could be civil and respectful adults, then I would have no problem inviting them. However, the likelihood of them being respectful/civil is extremely low, and I don't feel like we are obligated to invite them. My fiance agrees, even though I know that it hurts him. I've asked my fiance if he has any ideas on how to effectively communicate with them, and he really cannot find an effective communication technique to deal with them. I'm looking to see if anybody has any advice, or anybody that has been in a similar situation and how you handled it.

  26. Currently going through this and very appreciative of this post. While I anticipate a challenge telling my father that I don't think it's the right decision to have him at the wedding, the problem is actually with my mother. When I told her I was not planning to invite him, SHE is the one who threw a fit — screaming, crying, acting very childish. They've been divorced for 10 years but she still pines for him, even though he is not there for me, cheated on her, and the whole family detests him — she is the one who wants him there. How do I handle her push-back?

  27. We didn't invite my FIL. He barely had a relationship with my husband prior to the wedding and tried to pick a fight between my husband and I a month or two prior to the wedding itself. No one asked where he was – the majority of my family thought my husband's father dead. All in all, his absence helped to keep the drama out of our wedding entirely.

    Plenty of other folks couldn't be invited due to our tiny budget, and we had no drama about it. Everyone understood.

    I say do what you need to keep your day a happy one. If that means you have to prevent certain individuals from coming, then that's what it means. Just go into it with open eyes and acknowledge what may happen as a result of that decision.

  28. This article makes no mention of seeking advice. Yes we all ultimately get to make our own decisions but getting other's input is wise too. I've made decisions that I later regretted due to lack of foresight about consequences etc. Being empowered includes not only having the power to decide for ourselves but also that our 60-year-old self can look back and feel we did the right thing.

  29. I'm on the other side of this. My sister decided to get married abroad. My 7 year old son has severe autism and has a very hard time dealing with airports, train stations and etc. She didn't want to upset my parents by not inviting us outright or look like a bad person, but I know that she is doing this to keep him away. For me and her this is probably the end of our relationship. If you find enough love or care for us to share 1 of the most important days in your life because we may "interrupt" or "embarrass" because of disability then that's a real shame. But enjoy your wedding day.

  30. My niece is getting married and has chosen to not invite her aunt who happens to be the only living sister of her father. Now, my niece has not had a falling out with the aunt… the reason she is choosing to not invite her is because the aunt's daughter has told the bride, basically, "do what you want, but if you invite my mom I won't be there".
    I am not quite sure why my niece is feeling this loyalty to her cousin and none to her aunt… the cousin is one of her bridesmaids. Needless to say, this is stirring a whole lot of emotions/drama on the bride's father's side and many are saying they won't go if the aunt isn't invited.
    The bride's mother and grandmother (my sister-in-law and mother-in-law) both asked me to talk with the bride. We do have a good relationship but I only stressed her more, because I feel she should invite her aunt, as well as the cousin. The issues are between the aunt and cousin, not between the bride and aunt. I feel the cousin is trying to control a situation that she has no business in doing so.
    What can be suggested to a very stressed out bride right now. She is trying to send her invites out by the end of this coming week.

    • Yes sometimes third parties can destroy family dynamics. In fact in those cases the bride and cousins can be victim. ( Manipulators will love bomb the positive victim and destroy the negative victim. Classic distructions of entire families and communities) . I suspect that’s what happened with us. So far I have managed to stay out of the way, that can always change. No one is immune. I spent weeks after the wedding crying over it. And again siblings were not invited through no fault of their own. And there is a person who love bombs those who are successful or cool and treats a few relatives with contempt. My cousin gets love bombed my siblings and a couple other relatives are treated poorly. It’s very sad. Again I can’t make sense of it. It’s very painful.

  31. I don't want my mom to come to our son's wedding next May. I am able at most to have a long distance 'polite'relationship with her, in reality I can't stand her (for very good reasons) and I don't want the stress of her being there. If it were a local wedding, maybe I could handle it but she would have to travel up here and be underfoot for the whole weekend. I am dreading telling her however because I know her feelings will be hurt and she will think I'm just awful. I considered trying to keep the date a secret but now thinking I should just write her a honest letter.

  32. Thank you for this,
    I'm going through this too. Except it's with my whole family (parents and siblings). Long story short, it became mentally and emotionally unhealthy living in the same toxic home with them. Two years ago, I moved out and stayed with my best friend and her family for 6 months and cut off contact with my family. It was hard but it was worth it to start feeling happy and healthy again. My now-fiance (and his mom when she found out) has been incredibly loving and supportive.
    The one thing I felt pretty certain of since being engaged was that I didn't want my family to be at my wedding. I'm dreading the day I'll have to tell his family and the family I'm still close with this news but I know it's the right choice because I only want to be surrounded by people who add love and joy to my life.
    Thank you again for this article.

  33. The issue ultimately comes down to expectations. Some family members may be upset by not being invited because of feeling a sense of entitlement to be there. Often comparisons will be used too. "You can have your friends but not your family". I understand that it can be painful for those not invited, but they should not base the value of the relationship on the choice made for one day. The uninvited may never truly understand. You do not have to justify your choice. You only need to know it is the right one for you. You have nothing to prove. A wedding is one day. It will be a day the couple will remember forever, and guests dependent on who they are, will most likely not. We made the decision to just have parents, grandparents and siblings on the day. We decided we would celebrate with Aunts, Uncles and Cousins another day. Some of my extended family are extremely upset. Especially my Aunt who is also my Godmother. It has even impacted on my Mum's relationship with her sister as she has been so hurt by it. You can't make everyone happy. Some of my family have been great about it. In the end we decided to open the church up to everyone and have a buffet lunch the next day. My advice is: You have to be 100% behind your decision. Don't hide from it. Own, and be open about it. It is your day. The people that really matter will come around in the end, and those who don't maybe never really mattered.

  34. This annime is pretty much my obsession at this point.
    Featuring primarily voice actors, the following guests will host an array of panels, events and signings
    throughout the weekend. Sometimes this comes
    from feelings of low self esteem, but this is not always the case.

    • My sister is not inviting me to her wedding because my wife and my mom have not been getting along. We have a 2 year old and my wife does not want my mom alone with her. Basically because my mom doesnt like my wife. My mom made sure to hurt me and make my life hell due to me not backing her up. Mind you my mom is a narcissist and my siblings have sided with my mom and pushed me out because they think I side with my wife over my blood family. My mom always plays victim, I am the oldest and was always there for my siblings. So not being invited has been a major blow to me. I wish I did something terrible for her not to invite me. Her spite and vindictive heart is too strong.

  35. Please everyone, just elope.

    You are going to hurt the feelings of the people you exclude and the people who then have to negotiate the landmines you have set out.

    In a situation where it is just an inconvenience to have a couple around (say a first cousin and his wife with drug problems that don't and never have directly impacted you other than say, made you uncomfortable) you end up hurting their parents, siblings, grandparents and the poor other aunts and uncles who have to watch the whole thing in the background.

    I am sick just thinking about it and, yes, now trying to figure out how we respond knowing that others around us are really hurt by the whole thing.

    Just elope, please!

  36. Its nice knowing I'm not the only one with this sort of issue.

    I can't deal with my dad (have cut him out of my life cause of past abuse and not willing to stand for his trying to manipulate me into playing happy family with him when I don't trust or like him as a person). I have a brother and mother that I wouldn't mind inviting but I know if I do it will become all about him and how he is the victim of my cruel decision to not deal with his drama (like most abusive personalities he makes it about him and how i won't forgive him instead of the fact that I just don't have the mental/emotional energy to deal with the negativity of having him in my life or the stress of dealing with someone I don't trust). I also realized that if I invite them there's the odd chance that he might try to come with them if they decide to come despite not being invited. Thinking this through made me realize its just easier not to ask any of them. I might for my mother sake send video footage of the ceremony since I do care for her but I feel like her and my brothers decision long ago to keep trying to introduce my father in my life basically just adds up to them not understanding or caring about my mental well being with dealing with him… so if not inviting them hurts then I'm sorry but it was technically their decision in the first place that lead to this.

    But all this drama often means I have to field questions from people about things like roles in my wedding and my family members and who all I'm inviting. I become a little frustrated with the feeling of having to explain my actions/decisions/thoughts constantly even though its well meaning on most people's parts but despite that I have stuck to what I feel is the best. I just feel a little sad for my future Husband since he also has a troublesome (drama filled) family member that is not going to be part of the wedding party (probably invited for family's sake but not part of the wedding party) and he has to explain why to his mother who is a dear but thinks its awkward not having this person be in the wedding party when their child is a part of the wedding party… she's a bit traditional and we aren't (in fact half the wedding party is actually going to be children because I have quite a few close friends with children and he has two sons that we are thinking of making into his best men if their mother doesn't have one of her "going to be the evil ex" episodes and try to prevent it). I also let slip that the one we are thinking of letting officiate is a friend of mine and isn't christian and his grandmother is religious so my future mom in law is thinking of finding someone else. But we as a couple are more of a "believe there's more to life" but not necessarily leaning to any certain religion type so I feel having my friend officiate actually fits us better so I might broach the subject of my friend officiating again and reassure them that while the ceremony might not have all their leanings it will not have mention of anything that they feel is sacrilegious or troublesome either since my friend understands our personal views on religion and the fact that we have more conservative family members (since she also has the same kind of situation of a mix of conservative and not conservative leanings in her own family/marriage situation)… plus basically because of my bisexuality I wanted someone who is pro LGBT+ to officiate even though I'm marrying a man, my friend is open minded about such things so I felt like she would have the proper respect toward our viewpoint and who I am as an individual.

    So basically we are walking a tightrope on both ends but at lease if we stick to what we want the drama we aren't capable of dealing with will be avoided (people we don't care for and issues that have no need to be aired out during a wedding) and the drama we can't escape (people questioning our choices or being upset over things when it's not their wedding) will just be the things we can deal with .

  37. This article really helpful in telling me how to deal with not sending invites but how do I choose who to send an invite to because it's not me who has the problem with a family member it's family members that I love dearly on both sides that can't get along and I don't know if they can put aside their differences for my special day

  38. Honestly I would have rather not be invited at all over what my family did to me at my brother's wedding a year ago. I was invited and agreed to attend. I took time off work and spent money I barely had on a nice outfit. I looked forward to the wedding and seeing everyone.

    But apparently they didn't want me there at all because I was given the wrong address and my calls were ignored when I tried reaching them for directions. I was stranded at another church for an hour (because I left early in case I got lost) with no idea where to go. My other brother answered his phone a few minutes before the ceremony started and gave me the correct address and directions, but by the time I got there the wedding was already over.

    Please don't do this to family members or other guests. It really hurts. I still don't know what I did wrong to upset my family that they would do this. If you don't want someone to attend, just say that you want a small service and/or can't invite everyone

  39. This! I am running into this guest list drama, hardcore. I'm having a smaller wedding (less than 100) in three weeks and extended family is not on the guest list. Unfortunately my grandfather has just passed, so I saw a majority of them just a few days ago. Many decided to ask me how my wedding plans were coming along and when the BIG day was. I was upfront and told them it was next month. Lots of congratulations came way but also some hurt feelings. One of my father's cousins went so far as to accost me about why she wasn't invited, AT MY GRANDFATHER'S FUNERAL. I couldn't even remember her name when she approached me. Mind you, neither my fiance or I have seen these people in years. They don't know us as a couple. To add more fuel to the fire, these are my father's relatives and he hasn't pitched in a dime. I'm kind of worried the older generation will give me a lot of grief about not being invited and I don't need to be any more stressed out than I already am. Help! What should I do?!

  40. So I am looking for advice. I had to not invite my entire immediate family because of some major drama involving my future husband. Basically my parents told me they would not support my marriage and are starting to get hurt now that they realize the date is getting close. What I am worried about is the shower.
    I did not invite my mothers sisters out of respect for my mom. It is not her fault that she can't come to the wedding but my father's. My aunts were really upset especially because I invited some of my closest cousins. I had my first shower with his family and of course posted pictures of the shower because it was beautiful and I had one aunt making rude comments. Her daughter decided to throw a shower for me and invited the aunts and my mother. I am not worried about the shower, but what do I do when it comes to wedding questions. Would inviting them to the ceremony be enough? I dont have the money to invite them to the reception.

  41. This helps me a little bit but I'm in need of more advice. I've been with my partner for over 10 years and we just became engaged this week. The primary reason we've held off is because of his family dynamics,which are complicated at best:They all live across the country from us and my entire family, his mother has significant mental health issues and is prone to playing the victim and holding grudges for life,his step-father is now divorced from his mother and has falsely blamed my partner for everything wrong in his life, he is as unstable as you can get, and truthfully a possible safety risk, his biological father physically abused him as a child but is trying to make amends, and none of them can be in the same room together without creating major drama. Add to this that the presence of any of them triggers my partner's depression and anxiety.

    My gut is to elope but I can't imagine getting married without my family present. They are all very supportive and we are very close. But my partner doesn't want a wedding with only my family.

    I have no idea what to do. I want to get married and it feels like 3 unstable adults, who have very little to do with our lives are preventing it.

  42. Speaking as that cousin who got the invite. Even though I enjoyed the wedding. I felt like something was missing since my siblings were not included. My siblings were always kind and nice to our relatives. And for some reason they were not included. It’s hard to be the chosen one. I can’t talk about this beautiful wedding. I loved everyone there . I was grateful to be there. But I felt lonely without my sisters and brothers. Especially when sitting to eat. Felt like something was missing. My siblings are hurt and I can’t even share this with my closest family. It hurts . My sister is my best friend and she is good to everyone. Including relatives . I feel when I am home there is no one I can relive this wedding with. My brothers and sisters did so much more for and with my cousin. I have no clue why I was asked and none of my others, seriously none were invited. One other cousin and I were the only extended invited.
    I think when I get married, depending on my budget, I will invite all cousins or none. But it really is difficult to invite on sibling and not the others. Especially since I think some of my siblings deserved a invite more than I did. Please if you invite relatives do not split up siblings in particular. My siblings and I are still trying to heal from my going and them not being included. I am not able to be free and open. Just don’t do that to your cousins.
    Like the article said …. you need to have a good reason to exclude someone. And it has to be very serious issue.

  43. My 18 year old does not want to invite my husband (stepdad) to her graduation party that is being held at her aunts (my sister). They have a terrible history and cannot tolerate eachother. He tried to kick her out when she turned 18 because he felt her disrespect was ruining him. Our house has been a tension filled home for months.

    I agree whole heartedly that he should not be invited however since it is a big family event where extended family will be traveling to come as well as my daughters biological father and his family i have no clue how to tell him that. My family does not want him to there either because of his threat to kick her out and his childish behavior of not letting go.

    My hisband has previouslt stated if my daughter did not want to invite him to events (such as wedding or holidays) then it is my responsibility to tell her that he is my hisband and if he is not invited i will not go. He has told me, in these situations, if i decide to go i am choosing her over him. He also will not agree to me taking our sons (daughters half siblings) with me to events.

    I have no clue how to tell him he’s not invited. This article helps but how do you bring it up? I’m not putting that on my daughter to tell him but i have no clue how to do this…

  44. My family is currently dealing with the aftermath of such a situation and it has been a whole lot of drama and heartbreak. Here's the short version. My brother was married yesterday. The invitations were sent out quite late (end of March) and my sister who lives a 7 hr flight away booked a ticket to come for the wedding several months before that. My brother was aware. Well, every thing came to a head at the rehearsal and my sister was not on the seating plan so my mom asked my brother. He lost it on my mom, told her that my sister is dead to him and she is not invited. This is all 2 days before the wedding. The reason I am writing is because my brother is estranged from my father and he also was not invited to the wedding. I have been stuck in the middle for years and I refused to do his dirty work so I told my dad that he would have to ask my brother what is going on. I had really no idea about his feelings towards my sister. There had been some issues many years ago but to my knowledge everything had been fine. What I am not ok with is how my mom was trying to find out information he told her he wished she was dead and told her that my mom and her family were uninvited to the wedding. The way this was handled has my mother heartbroken. I'm sad I used to be very close to my brother. Now he wants nothing to do with any of us. Please if anyone else is in this situation do not wait communicate your wishes. Had we all known we would have respected that. My now sister in law told me off yesterday saying I was a bad sister and I wasn't showing love and support. I was uninvited, he didn't want my love and support.

    Now begins the grieving process. Please make your wishes known before causing pain. It would have been easier yet still difficult for my mom and the rest of us. 🙁

  45. I was abused by my biological sibling and have chosen to go no-contact upon reaching adulthood and realizing the extent of what happened growing up. My parents are very much about presenting a facade to the world (this includes to other family members) that everything is just fine with our nuclear family and if there's any issue, it resides solely with me. I have zero intention of inviting my sibling to the wedding but I know it'll result in questions and raised eyebrows. I've done my best to prep my mother that this is non-negotiable, but I have my doubts she will let it go and I feel pretty certain there's going to be a few family members/friends that would love to dig for dirt or attempt to make me feel bad for my decision. These responses to possible inquiries are great, both in the article and from a commenter on the first page. Thank you! 🙂

  46. My family juay doesn't have the money for my groom's big family, and my father is fighting cancer, so we can't force the stress on him. My groom fought with me about it, but once I reasoned with him, we brought down our guest numbers, and I now have to prepare for battle with his father about how important family is to them. My family is important, too. My father's health is important. Your family triples the size of my family, and you will not force me to change. I am not a doormat.

  47. I am making my guest list and have left off my abusive brother. I still get panic attacks when we are at family events, but my parents really want him to come. They are really wonderful in every way except when it comes to the boundaries I have set around him. I just don't know how to do this. I told them I would go to counselling to consider it but what if I still am not comfortable having him there? Any and all advice would be good. As even with the advice in the post, I feel lost.

  48. My problem isn't about drama or anything, it's just that I'm not that close with my family. I'm not even going to bother inviting my mother's side, cause they're on the other side of the world and would never be able to afford it. On my father's side we basically only see each other on big occasions like this, so I'm not sure what to do. My fiance doesn't want many from his family, so I wonder if I should limit it too. I haven't spoken to my parents about this yet though.

  49. I only read a few of the comments about how many of you agreed with the blogger and left out family members from the wedding. I just hope that each of those that made that decision will then accept that you will be left out of certain family gatherings which will include those same uninvited family members. Maybe the family dynamics is so bad invites to other functions isn’t an issue, but when you decide to exclude someone to an important event…you have set in motion a permanent divide in the family in certain situations in the future. Anyone who may not agree with your decision, may choose to exclude you from family events going forward so that they can enjoy the one that was excluded without the drama of the past uninvite. So, I would say be careful to think through carefully this very important decision.

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