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Bride ghosts parents after they sabotage her wedding planning. AITA? UPDATED 3X.

Bride ghosts parents after they sabotage her wedding planning. AITA? UPDATED 3X.


When this woman is furious with her parents after her wedding, she asks Reddit:

"My parents behavior while planning my wedding has ruined our relationship. AITA?"

I got married to my long time partner last year and the way my parents acted while we were planning our wedding is still affecting our relationship.

We got engaged in summer 2020 and decided to wait to get married until covid (hopefully) slowed down in 2022 but issues with my parents started immediately.

I have a really big extended family, most of whom don't live in the country, so we aren't close. Considering we wanted a smaller wedding (tried to keep the invites to 80 people and my family would have been more than half of that) I mentioned that I might stick to only inviting up to aunts and uncles, and not inviting most cousins.

My dad absolutely lost it. We got into a screaming match where he said I was "discriminating against his family" and I responded that my wedding was not the time to try to repair relationships with estranged family members I've only met a few times. In the end, we caved and started planning a larger wedding than originally intended.

When we broke the news that we had decided on a barn venue the fights started again. It would be terrible, uncomfortable, and ugly, etc. It took months to convince them that we had thought about our guest's comfort and that it would look good, even if they couldn't visualize it.

While this was happening and shortly after we got engaged I started to have health issues. It took a year to find out I was chronically ill and I actually ended up hospitalized in critical condition in the fall of 2021 because of this.

When I was in the hospital, my parents treated my now husband horribly, claiming it was his fault it got so bad even though he is the only reason I'm still alive now. I told my parents how unacceptable that was and they gave one of the worst non-apologies I've ever heard.

I was bedridden for months and when I started to get better, my hair started falling out in clumps about 8 months before the wedding. It got to the point I wasn't sure I would have any hair left on the big day.

I looked into ways to preserve damaged hair and braids are one of the best styles to prevent damage so I decided I would do some sort of braided style on my wedding day.

When my parents found out, surprise surprise, they freaked out. They called me selfish for "not putting in the effort to look the part", claimed it probably wasn't as bad as I was saying it was...

told me to stop wearing a hard hat at work because that was probably what was causing my hair loss (I worked on a construction site and not wearing a hard hat would get me fired, not to mention it's wildly unsafe), etc.

It ended with my fiance yelling at them that I had almost died and they should be thankful that there will even be a wedding, before kicking them out of our house. They also didn't apologize for this.

After this I minimized contact as much as possible and straight up told them that the stress they were causing about the wedding was making my illness worse. Despite my best efforts, every time we talked they would say something hurtful again.

My dad looked my husband and I in the eye and said that our wedding was not about us.

My mom threatened not to come to the wedding because in an argument I, out of frustration, said I wanted a much smaller wedding than what we ended up with.

They kept calling me selfish over every decision we made and claimed we were catering to my husband's family even though we weren't. If anything, I had actually planned several things specifically for my parents' benefit.

To top it off, on the day before the wedding, right as I'm about to start packing everything up to bring to the venue, my mom decides to pull me aside to complain that she doesn't understand why we're not close anymore.

That left my husband to pack the car alone and me with no idea if we forgot things or not.

The wedding happened and everything went well but by then the whole thing had already been ruined for me. I can't think about the day without thinking about how much my parents put me through in the lead up.

To make matters worse, now they won't stop talking about how amazing everything was and acting like they didn't fight me every step of the way. I can't return to the way things were before because I have lost all respect for them.

I'm mainly venting but would use any advice on how to proceed. I don't think talking to them about this would help because I tried that several times while planning the wedding and it only made things worse. AITA?

Before we give you OP's updates, let's take a look at some of the top responses:

luceless writes:

Sounds like your parents might be narcissists. Especially if they deny what they did and are incapable of really apologising. Apologising are usually them saying sorry that YOU feel that way and never take accountability themselves.

You might want to read up about narcissists and get some insight on how to deal with them if the shoe fits. They tend to get worse, not better. It's best to set strict boundaries with them. It will be hard, just an fyi but use your support system like your husband to help you stick to it and break contact if you feel they can't respect your wishes.

And yes, they "won't understand" and will play the victim but in reality they are selfish and don't care about what's best for YOU. Stay strong. If you don't start setting boundaries now they will not stop and interfere a lot when you have kids as well.

interestingsky writes:

I have perfected the art of passive aggression because I hail from and authoritative family as well but my silent LC's and snap backs are sharp and quick witted. My folks know, once I stop contacting you will be the one to call first and fix it properly absolutely no rug sweeping and that's of I choose to respond.

I'm currently on LC with one of my aunts and when the flying monkeys come to knocking I flip on them too so they don't bother me.

I say all of that to say, develop your way of dealing with them because if you have children or can have children, it won't get any better. They do not see you as an adult and they will not respect you or your husband. Good luck OP

justlookreally writes:

Advice: completely cut contact (this is not meant to be permanent, but give yourself some time to process and heal and get your head together for setting boundaries).

They will reach out to you, block them. When you are ready, tell them you're willing to talk, but they have to listen to you, and be respectful, and if they can't manage that, the conversation will be over.

Then, when you do talk to them, start with something like "your behavior about my wedding and my illness and towards my husband was reprehensible and unacceptable. [List some examples, and state why it was out of line.

Yes, they should know, do it anyway] It was so horrible, I had to stop contact with you because of your bad choices and behavior and the stress you were causing. If you ever speak to me or my husband like that again, we will stop contact permanently. If you cannot treat us with respect, you will not be involved in our lives going forward"

You'll need to have some responses about how them raising you does not make them entitled to treat you badly, and it doesn't make them entitled to order you around or make choices for you, etc ready to go.

Make it clear there will be consequences for their actions. I don't know if you want kids, but if you do, also make it clear that you will never allow your children to be around toxic people.

Be prepared to walk out and cut them off again if you can't even get a word in or they won't respect you. You can always try again later. You might have to do this several times before they get the point that you will not be disrespected anymore and let you actually finish your first statement.

You may have to be prepared to really go no contact because they may just be toxic, and in that case it will hurt, but you will be better off in the long run, but most likely hard boundaries about treating you guys with respect and knowing there are consequences will clear things up very nicely, giving you a good foundation going forward

nonnispumoni writes:

You need therapy. You will NEVER get the answers or closure you need from your parents and you revert to a child as soon as you start communicating with them. It is an unequal power balance.

Perhaps the book Codependent Nomore would be beneficial, or some work on enmeshed families. But without you separating the child from the adult and being able to CALMLY disengage and make boundaries your entire existence will continue to be at the whims of your parents.

Are you planning on having children? Are they into a particular culture or religion that you aren't involved in as much anymore? Will there be pressure for you to raise the child in this culture or religion or, in general, just custodial interference from your parents.

What if they decide to come to the hospital while you give birth? Who is telling them no? Are boys more valued than girls? Will there be favoritism if you don't intervene?

Buying a house? Moving? Holidays? And if they bring up the wedding you have every right to say..."your behavior made it unpleasant for me." If they want to throw a tantrum, let them. Ignore it. Learn this. Ignoring tantrums is the ONLY way to deal with them. Negative attention is still attention. Don't give a fire air.

Look up the term grey rock. And take care of yourself. You matter. Old people need to learn it's not about them...signed, an old person.

coreysnap writes:

Most everyone has your parents handled with a lot of good advice. I'm going to tell you about my wedding. I got everything I wanted, so I'm not complaining.

However, my mom took care of a lot of it and I didn't mind at all because my husband and I went to a courthouse and got married 4 months before the wedding and didn't tell a soul unless we had to.

So, I was married in March and I had a wedding in July. I love that we had this small thing where it was just the two of us in comfy clothes with the JoP.

My wedding day is also full of happy memories, as well, but no drama from my mother could ruin my day because it already happened.

The wedding really was for them. My point is, do something for you. Find a close friend to do a vow renewal for just the two of you. Do a wedding photo shoot with a different photographer that's just the two of you.

Anything you can think of that would give you a "start of our lives" feel and make you happy. After that, the wedding loses it's grip on you because of them.

And now, OP's first update:

They had contributed some money towards the wedding. I was ready to give their money back and uninvited them but it would have really stretched the budget and my husband didn't think it was a good idea to light the final match that would burn our relationship fully to the ground right before the wedding.

As for why he had to kick them out, that particular visit happened on a weekday. They were berating me about my hair choices as I was getting ready for work and I had to leave quite early to get to my construction site.

They then continued to try to get my husband to "talk some sense into me" while he was trying to work from home so he kicked them out.

The why bother with a relationship... that part I'm still juggling with. I guess it's just harder to let go of a bad relationship than you realize until you're in it. Especially since I have a lot of good memories with my parents from when I was a kid. I'm currently much lower contact but haven't fully committed to no contact yet.

Update 2:

My parents are European immigrants and we live in North America. We are white. They may have been a little surprised by the barn wedding as that's very North American but there's no real excuse for everything else.

Update 3:

I have already tried bringing things up with them several times, and they deny any of it ever happening. I have definitely reduced contact and started sharing less with them. We luckily don't live in the same city so there's no unexpected drop ins but they are still trying to come for visits and call more often which I have been avoiding as much as possible.

Looks like OP is NTA here. Any advice for her?

Sources: Reddit
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