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Mom refuses to let lesbian daughter alter her old wedding dress to be a suit. + Update

Mom refuses to let lesbian daughter alter her old wedding dress to be a suit. + Update


"AITA for not allowing my daughter to significantly alter my wedding dress"


My (44f) daughter (25f) is getting married later this year to her girlfriend (27f). I have always dreamed of walking her down the aisle (my husband passed when she was a child) and she enjoyed talking about a future wedding and playing bride when she was a child, picking flowers and colours and venues.

She loved watching the videos of my wedding and seeing me and her father get married and it was important in our bonding. When she was thirteen I promised her my wedding dress.

However her clothing style is more manly, she began refusing to wear dresses or skirts when she was in her late teens, even trying to demand her school allow her to wear trousers, and it was difficult convincing her to wear dresses to formal events.

She has gone through phases of wanting short hair, wanting to be a boy, and getting tattoos. I have always been very supportive of all of this, even when she met her girlfriend and proposed to her. I have encouraged her as much as I can. I am contributing significantly to the wedding.

I recently called and asked her when she wanted me to bring over the dress as it would likely need slight alterations and she dropped the bombshell on me that she wanted to wear a SUIT and have my wedding dress altered to remove the skirt portion so that the bodice could be worn with trousers.

At first I agreed but dragged my feet bringing the dress over. After a few weeks I changed my mind and told her that the dress was important to me and I didn't want her to ruin it. When I promised her the dress it was because I thought she would wear it as a dress, and she will only get to wear it if it is a dress.

I offered that her girlfriend could wear it as a dress instead but my daughter said that would still be ruining it (her girlfriend is a much larger woman than me so it would need more altering) and has since not been answering my messages except with saying that the dress would be a connection to her dad so she is disappointed not to have it.

I offered to go dress shopping with her for a replacement but apparently some of our family think I am stopping her having the dress because I disagree with her being masculine.

AITA for telling her she can have it as a dress or not have it at all? I may be the asshole because I promised it to her, but that was when she was very young and before I knew she wanted to change it.

Here were the top rated comments from readers after the OP's initial post:


NTA. You offered to 'lend' or let her 'use' your dress - not tear it apart in a way that destroys it forever. This dress is yours, with living, breathing memories attached to it. If it cannot be returned to you in it's original state, then NO, you are not the AH for changing your mind about this.

You might need to ask a professional seamstress about what is possible. I'm sure you have other possessions that actually belonged to her dad, and she may be able to incorporate one of them; or re-create your bouquet; cake, or something similar - if that connection is what she's seeking.


Why not recreate the bodice? It would be the same style that you wore, so she'd have that tie to her dad, but you would still have her dress. If you still have any of your husbands clothes, maybe you could even have a piece of one of them sewn into it.


Or, since the daughter likes to dress more masculine, why not wear something of her dad’s? That would be an even more direct connection than the dress.


Good idea. Especially because it confused me to read that Daughter thinks using the dress gives her a connection to her dad. What? Dad didn’t wear the dress, he stood next to it for a couple of hours - so what does that even mean?

Bottom line, though, is that temporarily borrowing a wedding dress that carries a lot of sentimental value is not the same thing as butchering it to meet someone else’s vision.

OP has every right not to want to let go of her property and her memories. Yikes to the daughter for the disrespect for people and property, and marshaling the troops for a propaganda campaign instead of just getting on with plan B.


Basically, you want your wedding dress to remain a dress. And your daughter would like to incorporate it into her wedding outfit, but she doesn't want it to be a dress anymore. If you allow her to alter it, it will still be a family heirloom -- but it won't be a vintage dress.

I think you're within your rights to simply tell her that the dress has terrific sentimental value to you and you'd like it to remain intact. Make sure her suit looks awesome though. NTA.

Four days later, the OP returned with an update.

"Update: AITA for not allowing my daughter to significantly alter my wedding dress"


I posted recently about my daughter surprising me by wanting to turn my wedding dress into a suit, which I refused despite having promised her because the reality hurt me. I was upset and it made me feel better to see people agree with me. But the comments that made me upset made me think the most about the future and helped me empathize with my daughter.

My daughter came over tonight and apologized for ignoring me, and explained that she had always thought she had been promised she could have the dress to own rather than borrow, so she was sad to have lost that dream.

I apologized for if I had ever come off as not supportive of her, as many comments said I sounded homophobic and I want to be clear that I am not. I respect and love my daughter.

We talked about many things, especially about my husband, how his presence could still be felt on the day, how my daughter felt jealous that her fiance would get to share the day with both of her parents while she has only a memory. We watched the wedding video again (it's been a few years) and cried a bit. We also had some wine so I apologize if this is not completely clear.

I told her that I hadn't realized how much giving up the dress would hurt and that I didn't think I could completely sacrifice it, and that I would talk to a tailor about if the dress could be separated and be put back together and returned to me, but if not then I would help her find a suit as alternative and give her some of the dress's lining to use in it.

I also surprised her with her father's wedding cuff links to wear, as suggested by many commenters, and my veil in case her fiance wanted to wear it, and she was extremely happy with this as a compromise.

She asked if she could try the dress on just to see what it would be like. I will admit I was hoping she would change her mind once she had it on. She let me do her hair and makeup however I felt like.

She was laughing so hard because it reminded her of when I did her braids for school. She picked out things for me to wear too in her style too just to see how I would look and we took pictures together and danced.

She looked beautiful in the dress, it was like I had always dreamed when she was my little girl, but she didn't look like herself. Suddenly I knew a lot of you had been right.

I hugged her and apologized and told her to take it and do whatever she wants. She has gone home now and some parts of me regret giving it to her, I have been teary putting away the photos.

But more than that I am thankful that I got to see what I thought would happen and realize it wasn't right, and that I can say goodbye to the expectations I had had for so long. My daughter is happy as herself and it is an honor that she wants to share that with me :)

Here were the top rated comments from readers after the OP's update:


Don't think of it as memories being altered along with the dress, think of it as a family memento with even more happy memories attached to it being passed down. Mementos are what you make them. You did the right thing.


"She looked beautiful in the dress, it was like I had always dreamed when she was my little girl, but she didn't look like herself."

This got me. It also tells me that you're a good mother and that you care about your daughter.


I love this update so much!! Well done Mama 🥰

So, do you think the OP is being rude or are they justified in wanting to keep their wedding dress intact? If you could give any advice or solutions, what would you say?

Sources: Reddit
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