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Woman's friend messes up her wedding seating chart; friend spends entire night alone in separate room. AITA? UPDATED

Woman's friend messes up her wedding seating chart; friend spends entire night alone in separate room. AITA? UPDATED

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When this woman has a horrible time at her best friend's wedding, she asks the internet:

"My best friend from childhood invited me to her wedding but forgot to assign me a seat. AITA?"

My childhood best friend (23F) got married this weekend and I was so excited to be there to support her on her big day.

I’m a chocolatier, so the bride asked me if I could create the wedding favours and dessert table. I was ecstatic to help with the wedding and went above and beyond to create a gorgeous table that was a HUGE hit on the day.

I was told early on that the wedding was over-budget and to keep costs low, my boyfriend was not invited. I was extremely understanding and even reduced my rates for the sweet table as my present to the couple.

A couple weeks later, after reviewing the guest list, the bride informed me that my boyfriend could come as my plus one, but if he did, I would be moved from the head table.

My boyfriend is a wedding photographer and is looking to build his videography portfolio. Knowing that the couple didn’t have a videographer, he offered to film a professional wedding video free of charge.

The bride was ecstatic and offered to move us to the vendor table so that we could network with the other vendors. We loved the idea and it was confirmed that we would be sitting with the vendors.

The day of the wedding, we arrived 4 hours early to help with the event. My boyfriend spent the time filming while I set up the dessert table and helped the event coordinator set the dinner tables.

After the ceremony, guests were moved to the cocktail room while the original room was converted into the room for the reception. While helping convert the room, I noticed that our names were not on the seating chart.

I asked the event coordinator where we would be sitting and she said “good question” and left to find out. She came back to say that there was no vendor table and that if we were staying for dinner, my boyfriend and I would have to sit in a separate room as we were not on the list.

The room was closed off from the reception, so we couldn’t hear or see anything, let alone talk to anybody.

I told the event coordinator that we were in fact guests and that we should be moved into the reception room. The event coordinator herself was seated at one of the tables in the room.

I told her I was a long-time friend of the bride, and even originally meant to be seated at the head table. However, the event coordinator said she couldn’t do anything about it.

I approached the bride to explain the situation. She mentioned that it was definitely a mix-up and that we should be in the room. The bride mentioned that she didn’t want to undermine me as a businesswoman, so she never told the event coordinators that we were friends or that I was a guest.

She left the coordination of the vendor table to the event coordinator and left it off of the seating chart. The event coordinator was not made aware that any of the vendors (besides herself and the MC) were staying for the reception and therefore didn’t think to add us in.

Although I understand the mix-up, the bride did NOTHING to get us moved to the main room. My boyfriend and I were cut off from the reception with no one to speak to, no way to see or hear, and even had to ask to be fed.

As a result, I missed the entire wedding and spent the majority of the evening crying in the bathroom waiting to move the dessert table into the main room after dinner so that we could leave. My boyfriend continued to film everything as he was committed to getting a beautiful video for his portfolio.

The next morning I emailed the bride about the experience. She apologized profusely and said she was scatterbrained on the day and didn’t think to do anything about it. She feels extremely guilty and would still like to be friends. I would like to forgive her but I am still extremely hurt.

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

summitjunk writes:

I'm so sorry this happened to you, it sounds like a miserable time on a day that should have been really fun.

The bride removed you as a guest and treated you as a vendor, told the wedding coordinator you were a vendor and not a guest, took you off the guest seating chart. It would be fair to say to the bride...

"I was led to believe I was a guest, and as a guest I created the dessert table and favors as my gift to you. Now I understand that I was not a guest, but just a vendor. As a vendor, there is no common ethic to give you any kind of gift. As a vendor, my services cost $xxxx. I will be sending you an invoice."

You may or may not see any money from it, and you may or may not salvage any kind of friendship with this. But if she loves you, and this was an honest misunderstanding, she'll apologize, take responsibility, pay the bill, and try to repair the friendship.

And if she doesn't, then there is no friendship to be salvaged anyway. At the very least it will make it very clear to her the extent to which she mistreated you, and how you feel about it, and how she has taken advantage of you (even if it was completely unintentionally...??)

BTW, even as a vendor you were treated really poorly.

porcupine7 writes:

It's seems suspiciously unlikely that you were an important enough guest to originally be at the head table, but then "forgotten" about for the whole reception.

I would reflect on a few things: 1. Have you been accidentally"forgotten" or dismissed or left out in the past by this friend? 2. Have you felt un/underappreciated by this friend in the past?

3. Did her apology acknowledge the full shittiness of her behavior, or was it mostly making excuses and focusing only on how "scatterbrained" she was? 4. Has she hurt you deeply before, and if so how did the repair process go?

5. Does this seem way out of character for her? As in, do you truly understand the mix up, or does part of you feel betrayed or taken in by the way things played out?

While it can be helpful to get objective opinions from strangers on the internet, even that step suggests to me you don't feel right about any of this despite her apology. It may be too soon, but it may also be worth following your gut/heart/head to get clarity on what you feel is the truth here.

izzzu writes:

The bride used you and your boyfriend for free or cheap labor. Your boyfriend should give her a nice video with some lovely highlights, and use some OTHER really great footage for his portfolio. And you should use some stills of your work and some video of it for your portfolio.

Also, you and BF should ask anyone who comes to you for business how they learned about you. If this nasty-ass bride referred them, either decline, or charge them 50% more than your full rate.

And finally, never, ever volunteer to do something for a friend for free or at such a discount that you lose money. A real friend will pay you for your services because if you hire a professional, you should expect to pay. You can give them a discount, but never so much that you don’t make some money.

tiredaf20 writes:

Oh, OP. You remind me of me when I was younger. Arriving early to help with all that extra stuff, digging into your own pocket in addition to giving a big discount - you're a people pleaser. I'm almost 40 now and have zero fs left to give.

Here's what I think. Give them the video since that's what you agreed to - but unedited. And charge for shipping and supplies (whatever storage device(s) it's on). It's both petty and reasonable.

Then move on from this friendship without angry words (because she might retaliate). The profuse apology sounds like it was a show and you were being used. I'm sorry this happened to you and that you and your BF find success elsewhere.

And now, OP's update:

After reading everyone’s responses and doing some reflecting, I’ve come to the conclusion that she’s not my friend.

Our relationship in the past few months has mostly consisted of her blowing me off, and me interpreting it as though she was busy. She moved across the country 2 years ago, but flies here often.

Most of the couple’s friends and family still live here, which is why they decided to have their wedding here.

Every time she’s come to visit, we’ve tried to make plans, which would end with me being blown off. The excuse was always that some last minute thing came up, which is why she didn’t have time to see me.

She called me months before her engagement party to let me know that I would be invited to it, but I was never actually invited. I responded to pictures of it online (just saying “gorgeous!”) and she explained that I wasn’t invited because her MIL planned it and didn’t know her friends.

Moral of the story - the only time I‘ve seen her within the past year was to do a free tasting for her wedding after she mentioned that she would not finalize her order without a tasting. We had plans to meet up the same week of the tasting, which she blew!

I re-read her apologetic email and interpreted it differently the second time. The email mainly followed the structure of “[excuse] - but that’s not an excuse”. In one section, she wrote that although she would still like to be friends, she understands that I may not want to and that’s fine.

To me it seemed as though she was saying she wouldn’t care if we were to no longer be friends. At the end of the email, she added “PS - we would still like the video”, despite making it a POINT prior to the wedding to let my boyfriend and I know that she couldn’t care less about the wedding video.

Although she mentioned in her email that she would make it up to me, I haven’t heard a word from her since I responded back to her email naïvely accepting the apology the day after the wedding.

I watched my boyfriend’s rough edit of the wedding video this week and listened to her speech. She added a section where she thanked her friends for “transcending the lines of friends and family”.

She called out a long list of names from the friend group. Mine wasn’t included, which sealed the deal for me. Especially since I was so involved in the preparation of the wedding that she wouldn’t have just forgotten my name.

Moving forward, I will be a lot more cautious with my circle, and I’ll definitely be more strict with doing business with friends (no more paying out of pocket!).

My boyfriend has agreed to not go out of his way to send her the video. If she asks for it, he will send a link to a shortened version on his website. I couldn’t convince him to add a watermark, although that was my favourite solution.

Thanks everyone for your recommendations! So - we’ll see if she comes around in a month or so. I will definitely not be reaching out.

What do YOU make of OP's story? Any advice for her?

Sources: Reddit
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