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Bride's parents decide to crash the elopement, 'they ruined my wedding.' AITA?

Bride's parents decide to crash the elopement, 'they ruined my wedding.' AITA?

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"AITA for telling my parents they ruined my wedding by showing up?"

I (27f) just married "Jerry"(37m) a week ago. We got engaged in October of 2023 and started planning the wedding. Pretty quickly we realized that we didn't want a big wedding and opted for an elopement, just 4 ppl total, two witnesses and us. I chose my brother (36m) to be my man of honor and Jerry chose his best friend to be his best man. There were some complications with planning because we decided to get married in 6 months, so lots of running around.

We took the full week of and decided that instead of a formal honeymoon we would come home and spend our first few days relaxing with our cats with the rest of our time off. In the beginning I started having problems with my brother and his willingness to contribute to my "planning." Honestly, the only thing I asked him to help me with was my wedding dress stuff and he always made a big problem about showing up, he never paid attention, always made jokes about my size (I wear a size 4, 28in waist), and was more focused on telling everyone about himself.

Anyways, around December I noticed his attitude started to change towards the wedding in general, but still huffed and puffed. We talked to one of our mutual friends and they said we needed to take it easy on him because "he's still single and everyone is moving on without him." Throughout the entire planning I explicitly told both our parents that they were, unfortunately, not invited. We wanted to keep it small, and understanding that this wedding was a 4 hour flight (min) from our respective parents we didn't want them to join us or feel obligated to spend that money. We did however say that we would be planning a "second wedding" to celebrate our marriage and they of course would be invited then.

Fast forward to a week before our wedding and the events planner at the venue changed, at first I was a little worried but she said everything was in order till she asked me about the additional room under a "John Smith." I told her I didn't know about this booking and that they were not part of my group, the catch is John Smith is the name of my dad. I immediately called my mum and asked her if the booking was them. I then reminded them that if they were to show up it would be a huge slight to Jerry's parents (they are divorced with new partners) and it wouldn't be fair to them.

She swore that it wasn't them and over the next week I called them every day begging them to not show up at my wedding. Two days before the wedding I called them again and my dad picked up, I told them again that if it was them I would be super upset with them and he said "[he] feels hurt that [I] would think they would ruin [my] wedding after I told them they were not to come."

At that point I dropped the topic because I thought he wouldn't have said that if he didn't mean it. We get to the day before and I made reservations at a local pub close to the lodge for 9 ppl, myself, Jerry, my photographer and her assistant, best man and his family. When we arrived my photographer noticed two additional seats, I looked at Jerry worried. My brother was already there waiting for us and right before we ordered drinks, my parents showed up. My heart sank. After telling them they were not to come, they completely disregard it.

As happy as I was to see them I was so hurt they showed up. I immediately put aside my feelings and tried my best to make due with the new changes. During dinner my brother explained the whole story. It started in November when he said he would feel better if mum and dad were at my wedding. He felt that it was important for them to be involved and that he wanted to make sure dad walked me down the aisle instead of him.

He felt that given they were almost in their 70's we couldn't take for granted their good health. I told my photographer that they were make sure to get photos without my parents so we had something to send to my in-laws. We all agreed that no one was to post my parents were at my wedding on social media till Jerry and I figured out how to tell his parents.

The wedding came and went and although there were some hiccups it did turn out fine. Jerry and I talked a few times about my parents surprise and he just said "well they're here now, and it's nice to see them." After the wedding my brother said that he made plans for all of us to drive all over BC to show my parents different spots starting the day after our wedding. After yet another early morning we packing to make check out at 11am, and the first drive was to a ski resort that had a fancy restaurant atop a mountain for lunch.

That was 1hr 45min drive. Then from there we drove 2hrs and 30mins to another resort for a single night stay. The next day, another early morning, we drove to a hot springs about a 40min drive. After a couple hours we drove back home so another 3hrs. The next day my new husband had plans that he took my brother and dad too and I took my mum to do a quick job and met back up for dinner that evening. Then came Sunday, when I woke up I knew I was upset but I didn't know why, Jerry immediately asked if I was okay and I kinda shrugged. We had to meet my brother and parent around 11am to go to a trade show and I just felt tired. Again, I pushed aside my feelings and continued on.

After the show, we decided to go out for lunch, and that's when it clicked for me. I had been married for 4 days and not one of them were spent with my husband and tomorrow we were going back to work. I tired suggesting a pub that was close by and my brother started a fight with me saying that we could walk to another pub that was over 30mins (by foot) away. Then the arguments started. I tried to walk away but my parents said not to, but my brother wouldn't back down I finally said to Jerry I wanted to go home and we started to walk away. My dad called me and said he would meet us at the original pub suggested and so we turned around.

When we got there my brother started up again saying that this pub wasn't even that good and that we shouldn't have come here. I know I should have stayed quiet but I said that maybe he should leave and he did. After he left, my dad asked my what I wanted to eat but I truly wasn't hungry because I was boiling with anger so I told him I wasn't hungry. He threw his hands up and said "I didn't fly out here for this." And told us we were leaving. I offered to drive them back to my brother's, they said no and we all walked away from each other. Later I got a text message saying that I ruined everything from my brother.

Jerry and I spent the remainder of our Sunday trying to relax but we were both very tried and very upset so it didn't go over well. The next day when I started work I felt like I couldn't get out of bed and then I had therapy half way through the day. There I was able to talk about everything that happened and finally I cried about how our wedding was hijacked and our honeymoon was spent with my family who completely disregard that it was our honeymoon.

I balled my eyes out when I realized that we would either have to lie to my in-laws or tell them what happened. I understand that everyone will say it's not like we invited them, we didn't know, but understand that if they thought there was a chance or where given the opportunity to surprise their son at his wedding they would have.

And knowing my MIL, she's going to be broken hearted when she finds out. Second to all of that, I finally realized that my parents are the monster-in-laws and that kills me. I called Jerry and I cried to him how horrible I felt and that we will never get back our wedding and never the time off back. It breaks my heart that our first week spent as a newlyweds has been prioritizing my parents.

I tried to get back to work but I kept crying. When Jerry got home I cried again when we talked about it. He completely agreed and that he felt that there was so many emotions that we didn’t have an opportunity to digest what happened. Today I got a call from my mother wondering why we haven't responded to any messages and why we've cancelled dinner plans.

I couldn't keep myself together and I blew up. Between the tears I tried to explain why we were so upset with them and that I felt betrayed that they would disregard the very clear line and how they would feel if Jerry's parents did this instead. I told her that I understood they thought it was a nice gesture but it ruined our wedding and that they didn’t fly out for me because if they did it for me they would have respected my wishes.

They did this because of how they felt and how my brother felt. My brother yelled from the background that "[how dare I] not take additional time off to spend with [my] parents" and that they didn’t spend all this money to fly out here for this. Her response was that they had every right to be at my wedding and that this is how "I felt" and I can "keep [my] boundaries [...] and [she's] done with me". I called Jerry crying that how could they not see what they did to us, he said that he would call them and see if he could make them see reason.

I feel defeated, I didn't want to come across as an ungrateful daughter but they really hurt me and I know my emotions are really high so blowing up was probably not the best choice. I get that they did this from a place of love and didn't think about the repercussions that would affect my new family. I just wish they would have respected our wishes. AITA?

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

Key-Ratio-7038 said:

Girl you have a family of aholes. Go nc and priotize yourself. They completely hijacked your wedding. What family would want to hang out with their newlywed daughter on what is technically their honeymoon? That's super weird behavior.

Also, your brother can get f-d. Who cares what he wants or how he feels? Especially on a day that was supposed to be about you and your new husband. When you do a vow renewal, surround yourself with the people who love you both instead of people who obviously don't respect you.

Lopsided_Intention57 said:

The biggest AH here is your brother. He should have told you to find another witness. Instead he lied, grumbled, gaslit, complained, and betrayed you. He orchestrated everything. He ruined your wedding. He ruined your honeymoon. He ruined every interaction because he was a selfish AH who decided he needed to be the star of the show. He’s bitter he’s not married yet, so he made sure he was the center of everything. And he got to play the “good child who just thought about his parents."

F that guy. He is at the core of everything that went wrong. Your parents are also massive AH here for blatantly lying about their reservation and plans, and continuing to disregard your feelings. But they couldn’t have done any of that if your brother hadn’t been happily facilitating every bit of that fiasco. I’m sorry OP, that sucks forever.

Cat_Lilac_Dog22 said:

ESH except for Jerry. Your brother sabotaged your wedding. Your parents completely disregarded your wishes and repeatedly lied to you. And you let your toxic family stomp all over your wedding which ruined it for you and your husband and insulted his parents. You should have walked out the moment your parents appeared. You need to learn boundaries. You need to go very LC or even NC with all 3 of your family members. And you need to apologize massively to your husband and his parents.

rationalboundaries said:

YTA to yourself, your new husband, & your in-laws. Stop making excuses for them! "...did it from place of love..." total b.s. They did it to show they are in control of you & your life choices. They do not see you as an adult with agency. Your poor husband.

canyonemoon said:

NTA. I am very sorry your wedding and honeymoon turned out like this. However, you've got your husband by your side, you've got in laws that respected your choices, and you've got a new sense of clarity and understanding when it comes to your family's priorities. You'll be okay, don't grovel for people that don't care about your feelings, your needs, your boundaries.

I don't need to repeat what your family's done because it already hurts you. From your story, it doesn't sound like they'll ever want to change or apologise. So I'd, with the help of therapy, cut them off and focus on making you and your husband's life the happiest it can be.

MissMurderpants said:

Op, put your folks on a break. Please take your husbands parents and spouses to a lovely place and have a celebratory meal with just them. Apologize to mil for how shitty your parents are and ask if she can forgive you. I’d gladly give her and Gil all your holidays going forward until you host your own. NTA.

While the opinions were slightly divided for this saga of wedding drama, most people were on OP's side. What's your advice for these newlyweds?

Sources: Reddit
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