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'AITA for leaving my son’s wedding reception early and discreetly?'

'AITA for leaving my son’s wedding reception early and discreetly?'


"AITA for leaving my son’s wedding reception early and discreetly?"

I (52M) have there sons (31,28, and lost youngest 7yrs ago when he was 20). I have been divorced since 2002 from their mother but until 2009 I had them every other weekend. Career required me to move out of state so we did the video chat thing and then in the summers they would come individually for 2 weeks.

Every time their mother called saying the boys needed something, I made sure she had the money for it in less than 24hrs. Every school event that I was invited to I would make the 12hr drive to be there, including high school graduations. When we lost the youngest in 2017 things became very strained between me and the two oldest. I made sure to send a text once a week to let them know that I loved them and that I was always a phone call away.

Last summer I lost my father to a long battle with dementia. During the funeral process I learned that both boys had made the drive down numerous times to see him in the nursing home yet never so much as let me know they were in town. During the funeral I was so proud of them because they stood and shook every hand of each person that came to pay their respects. I made sure to tell them that.

A couple of months later the oldest got married. They invited me, my brother, and my mother. We made the 8hr drive without hesitation. At the wedding ceremony no one acknowledged us. The three of us were seated on the bride side just behind the family section. Got through the service and went to the reception where we were seated at the very last “overfill” table where we sat far away from the wedding party and in the back.

The “babysitter” from when the boys were little sat at the table with us. I jokingly asked her what she did to be punished to have to sit with me. Dinner was a buffet and by the time our table got to go through the line, they were out of most of the food.

We sat through the wedding party entrances and listened to the speeches from the moms, the best man, and bridesmaid. At this point we had been at the reception for two hours. I felt unwanted and disrespected, but my feelings didn’t matter because to me it was their day and that was what mattered.

Anyway after the speeches, I looked at my mother and brother who felt the same way and told them I was ready to go. The only thing left on the agenda was the first dances and then it was going to be a big party into the night. So we quietly and discreetly snuck out the door and left.

30 mins later I got a very irate call from my youngest for leaving early and without saying good bye. I told him that tonight wasn’t about me and that he needed to focus on celebrating with his brother. We could talk later.

He claimed they wanted to get a pic with us and came looking for us and that is when he found out we left. I told him that NO ONE had told me this and that if I had known I would have sat there until 3am to make sure that pic happened. He hung up mad.

Since then, both boys refuse to talk to me. It has been 8 months. I still send a text but they are ignored. So am I the AH for leaving early? I stand by my decision, but I regret what it has cost me. So now I am questioning whether I am in the wrong or not. Thank you.

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

WaitUntilIDie said:

NTA, someone else suggested a detailed letter and I think it's a good idea. This must be incredibly difficult for you. Do your best to enjoy your life for what it is, hopefully they cool off and come around but something seems really off based on the timing of events.

Like did their mother blame you for the youngest passing or the divorce and other stuff that would alienate them from you? If she's been saying things that make them angrier with you I'm not sure how to change that kind of deception. Be yourself as you have been and hopefully they give your letter a read or hear what your mother has to say.

prevknamy said:

YTA. You left them for a job. Sending money and attending some milestone events doesn’t qualify as parenting. You abandoned them. They don’t owe you anything. In fact, the wedding gave you a taste of your own medicine - knowing how it feels to be a low priority to someone who is supposed to love you.

StnMtn_ said:

NTA for wanting to leave. YTA for not saying goodbye. My wife and I always try to say bye to the hosts at parties. In the case of a wedding of a relative, even more important to say hi as well as to say bye. Have you ever asked your kids why they drove to see their grandpa in a nursing home many times, but never visited you? You may get some much needed answers there.

Sea_Firefighter_4598 said:

NTA. You left discreetely and according to how you were treated how could you know a picture was wanted. Whatever problem they have with you there was no reason to treat their uncle and grandmother like that. Unfortunately your sons are now careless and maybe cruel people hopefully that will change. You have done what you could do.

zbornakingthestone said:

YTA. You abandoned them, and I guarantee there are a boatload of missing reasons in this post. Try and have a bit of agency about your relationship with your children.

Wanda_McMimzy said:

For my child, I would’ve stayed as long as they were there. I just can’t wrap my head around not doing the absolute most to be an active part of their life. We’re very close even though they’re an adult several states away. We talk several times a week and text and Snapchat daily. I don’t understand having a child and being so passive in the relationship.

While the opinions were fairly divided here, most people weren't on OP's side. What's your advice for this family wedding drama?

Sources: Reddit
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