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Groom bans future mother-in-law from wedding, 'It came to a head today.' AITA?

Groom bans future mother-in-law from wedding, 'It came to a head today.' AITA?


"AITA for banning my to-be-mother in law from the wedding?"

I (25M) am going to be marrying my lovely fiance (27F) in 6 months. Let's call her Gabrielle (G). She's fantastic, love her to bits, and am excited as hell for the wedding. Her mother (M) however, is (and this is mutually agreed upon by us), an abuser.

For as long as I've known G, every couple of months, they will get into a fight fabricated by M, culminating in M sending vile things to G. I encourage G to stand up for herself, however, she handwaves this abuse (after being incredibly upset for a time of course) since M is the only parent that she has.

Throughout wedding planning, M has flipped between helpful, to toxic. For brevity I'll avoid examples, but this oft has surrounded money, and how she has "put so much towards the wedding." But, this has almost always been contingent on doing what M wants with the money; often outside our budget and what we want at the wedding.

In most cases though, we just give in. It then gets lorded over us how much she is contributing. Any pushback over "ideas" that M has is immediately responded to with a tirade on 'disrespect' and how much she has contributed, how we should be grateful etc. This has mutually annoyed G and I to no end.

It came to a head today. M wanted to pay for a thing she really wanted, but then explicitly said that she wouldn't pay for something else that she wanted and we didn't. G, with my support, presented some pushback, which went down the familiar path of disrespect.

However, this time it got vile, personal, and about as abusive as you can get in text format. It was shared with me (by G) and was one of the most disgusting passages of text I've ever read. M said she wasn't going to come to the wedding, and demanded we give back the money she already provided.

My immediate response to G was that I don't want to negotiate with someone playing the emotional blackmail card. She could have the money back and that's that. G tended to agree, saying that if that's what the mother really wanted, she couldn't stop her...

However, M tried to wheel everything back a few hours later, pretending the abuse didn't happen. However, I was done with it at this point. We're this far out from the wedding, her behavior was spiralling. I have a personal gripe with bullies and abusers, so I was ropeable...

Previously I was only hanging on for G's sake. With this, I told G that I wouldn't accept this wheelback from M, and she wasn't to come. She can have her money back, that's that.

G understands where I'm coming from and is accepting of this, however of course is still somewhat upset that it has come to this, and that M, who as said is her only parent, cannot come to the wedding.

I refuse however to share a wedding with an out and out abuser who has for years, terrorized G to no end, and bringing no end of strife to the wedding planning process with her consistent emotional abuse of both of us. So, AITA?

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

000-Hotaru_Tomoe said:

NTA. But G might benefit from talking to a professional about her family situation. Victims of abuse often don't recognize that they are abused. By eviscerating the problem with a therapist, she may gain tools to fight this toxic dynamic back and stand up for herself.

PuzzleheadedRoyal559 said:

YTA. I totally get where you’re coming from but you don’t get to veto the mother of the bride attending. Only the bride does. Get mom the money back and let her know you’ll be doing your wedding the way you want.

Inconceivable76 said:

YTA. Even if you are right, this isn’t your decision to make. It’s the person whose parent it is.

1962Michael said:

ESH. Obviously M is an AH for how she is trying to control everything with her money and her abuse. It certainly makes sense to me that you should not accept and money or suggestions/demands from M.

And to ban M from the ceremony to make your point at least. But I think you would be AH to not allow G to decide for herself whether her mother can attend.

I still recall my brother's wedding being canceled because they had such an argument with the mother of the bride. She backed off, and they had the wedding they wanted, 2 months later.

baloo1970 said:

NTA I wish I'd banned my mother from attending our wedding. She made some horrible memories for me during planning and some horrible memories during the wedding. I wish those weren't part of my experience of what should have been a wonderful time for me and my husband.

After a few more years of her abuse, my husband stepped in and called her on it (like you have ). I finally realised that she didn't love me. Because no one that loved me could say those types of things to me. That was over a decade ago. She died 18 months ago and I hadn't spoken to her since my epiphany. I do not regret it for one second.

Your MIL does not love her daughter. Ask your fiancé to think of anyone she hates enough to say the same words to that her mother says to her. Get her to imagine talking like that to literally anyone. Ask her what she would do if someone was saying those things to someone she loved.

Ask her to picture saying those things to her own children. Really make her visualise it. Describe your child, describe a scenario, and then describe your wife looking at that child and saying those things. She needs to understand that this is not love and she owes that woman nothing.

LurkerByNatureGT said:

YTA- not for banning an abuser, and definitely not for having you fiancée’s back here, but because of this: “G understands where I'm coming from and is accepting of this, however of course is still somewhat upset that it has come to this…”

With all the best intentions, you are running the danger here of turning into the one making G fold instead of standing up for herself and what she wants, because she’s been conditioned her whole life to deny herself for other people’s demands to smooth things over.

I don’t think you want to be the one G is saying “if he really wants that I can’t stop him." G needs professional support to recover from growing up with an abusive parent. You should also have professional support, either on your own or together as a couple, to help you navigate this in a way healthy for both of you.

While the opinions were fairly divided for this one, most people were not on OP's side. What's your advice for this wedding drama?

Sources: Reddit
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