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Mother throws fit at daughter's wedding; says she ruined the most important day of her life.

Mother throws fit at daughter's wedding; says she ruined the most important day of her life.


"Mother Gothel left my wedding, taking gifts and her side of the family with her."


Hey, fellow Redditors, gather around for a story that reads like a reality TV show crossed with a soap opera – it's got drama, laughs, and a whole lot of 'what in the world is happening' moments. I'm sharing these stories now as a form of therapy after cutting ties with my biological mom, affectionately referred to as 'Mother Gothel.'

Our relationship has always been strained due to her overbearing nature and emotional manipulation. Therapy revealed that my self-esteem issues stemmed from her constant criticism and mental abuse. Whenever I made decisions, she disagreed with. It wasn't until I moved three hours away from her that I realized how dysfunctional and toxic her behavior was.

I still maintained contact because I loved her as my mother but disliked her as a person, if that makes sense. I distanced myself from her as much as I could because I couldn't bear having to defend my life choices every time we talked about anything in my life.

Quick backstory: my parents divorced over two decades ago .They've both beened remarried for at least 17 years. The divorce and everything surrounding it was nothing short of a spectacular disaster.

Both of them handled it poorly, but Mother Gothel, in particular, threw fuel on the fire by demanding a small fortune. She wanted more child support, despite having 50/50 custody and trying to turn my brother and me against our dad and kept my dad's last name despite him asking her not to. She also gave it to my half brother, whom we don't share a dad with.

Even now, they can't exchange a word without throwing shade. I tried to have a normal day when I graduated university and invited them both, and they both promised they would not act like kids. But, Mother Gothel later declined the invitation and asked to have a dinner “just the family” with me instead.

Mother Gothel has always struggled with a poor self-image, constantly obsessing over her appearance and constantly dieting. It was worse when Dad remarried my stepmom who is a personal trainer and looks amazing for her age. Mother Gothel's habit of oversharing adult issues with me and other body issues was definitely one of the main issues.

She was constantly talking about weight, weight loss and giving me “tips” on how to look thinner. It affected me so profoundly when I lived at home that I, at 19-years-old, developed an eating disorder because of her constant talk about weight and her encouragement for me to lose more.

I weighed myself daily, felt anger if the days number were not less than yesterday, survived on two eggs and water a day for six months while working a physically demanding job. All of which she seemingly failed to notice. She even gave me diet pills to 'help' me on my weight loss journey.

I moved away from her and got the help I needed to stop and get better. I was furious when the first thing she said to me after we set a wedding date was that it would be excellent motivation for me to lose weight. I asked her to not talk about weight with me again.

Now, let's dive into the wedding story.

Amidst the whirlwind of my 2023 wedding, it felt like a reality TV show with a soap opera twist, as I tried to figure out who among my friends was on 'Team Friendship.'

My husband and I had a non-traditional wedding with no white dress, bridesmaids in fiery red outfits, no priest, and even bunking together the night before. Our mantra was simple – no stress, great food, a fabulous party, and an uncomplicated ceremony.

Now, the mystery of why Mother Gothel left before the appetizers.

As you might have guessed from the back story, it didn't take long for Mother Gothel to start with her need for control again. I couldn't bear having to defend my husband and my choices every time we talked about anything in my life. I turned to Reddit for advice and I'd already shared the tea on some of Mother Gothel's antics during the wedding preparations.

The consensus of the advice I got was to put her on an 'information diet.' But oh boy, that only made her even more desperate for control. She bombarded me with wedding-related questions, giving 'tips' as if they were sacred wedding commandments I had to obey.

She conveniently 'forgot' our choices, like our wedding colors (burgundy and gray), insisting that dusty pink was the way to go. She flooded me with dusty pink suggestions, claiming they perfectly matched our 'theme.' Spoiler alert: they didn't.

The pettiness escalated. Like when my dad offered us a suite for the wedding as a wedding present, she bought two suites and asked the hotel to put them as close to ours as humanly possible. When I tried to intervene, I was told to handle it with her, but she wouldn't budge.

She had already chosen her outfit ten months before the wedding (dusty pink, but she also had a 'light gray' one that my husband and I thought looked awfully white and floor length for our taste and had to say no), and spent the remaining months repeatedly asking me what the other mother would wear and whether she would be the best-dressed of all (Not exaggerating).

She pestered my Maid of Honor and the Toastmaster with questions about the order of speeches, and she was far from pleased with my MOH's responses. According to Mother Gothel, my step dad should give his speech after my dad and my father-in-law.

We all thought that was a no-brainer, but she believed my MOH wasn't taking it seriously enough. So, she contacted me, demanding I talk to MOH about how grave the situation was. Again we are all in agreement but Gothel thought it wasn't being taken seriously enough.

Despite everything, I still thought she was just herself and in the end it was because she loves me and just wants me to have the best day of my life.

The day before the wedding, my husband and I made it clear to everyone: no fixed plans. We'd have to prepare for the wedding and it will be our first priority. The only thing we planned was to wind down in the hotel bar at the end of the day, open for anyone to swing by and say hi instead of us having to run around and meet people.

Of course, most of our family members and friends showed up. However, Mother Gothel had different plans and opted for her pre-wedding soirée in her suite at the hotel with her side of the family. I did pop in to greet everyone but then wanted to join the fun at the bar with our other loved ones. Later, I found out that Mother Gothel was irked that I hadn't spent the evening in her room with the others.

The wedding day dawned, and it began smoothly. All the pre-wedding jitters had melted away, and I just felt a “whatever happens, will happen and it's okay”-kind of calm. We headed to the venue where the ceremony was set, and since it was at a restaurant, some guests caught glimpses of me before showtime. No big deal.

Mother Gothel and her entourage arrived together, bearing gifts and flowers. I tried to be polite, but I wasn't in the right headspace to deal with them, so I asked the staff to handle the gifts and flower arrangements for me.

(We were 15 minutes until the ceremony would begin, and I was in my wedding dress—no time for floral artistry). Mother Gothel didn't take kindly to this, but she “graciously” decided to let it slide... for the time being.

The ceremony was a masterpiece, exceeding my wildest dreams. Self-written vows, a clifftop setting with a breathtaking view, and my best friend playing a beautiful violin piece. Everything was perfect.

Afterward, we took photos with family, and then my husband and I slipped away for more pictures. However, there was a miscommunication, and the staff thought we'd make a toast with the guests before our photo session. They hadn't served the toast when we returned, so almost all mingling time had evaporated, and no one had a drink for 1.5 hours.

My husband and I had very little time to spend with our guests, and Mother Gothel was once again displeased. This time, it was because I hadn't devoted my time to her and because I hadn't abandoned my own wedding to have photos taken with her family. And now, the grand finale of Mother Gothel's dramatic exit: if you guessed B, the seating arrangement. Give yourself a cookie.

My dad and Mother Gothel couldn't hold a conversation without it turning into a disaster, so I separated when I planned the seating arrangement. The table setup was supposed to be more intimate, with people facing each other.

However, at the last minute, the restaurant decided to switch things up for better seating, causing everyone to end up in a row. This arrangement placed Mother Gothel and my stepdad apart (like, Gothel, mother in law, father in law, husband, me, my dad, my step mom, my step dad). Strangely, Mother Gothel wasn't upset about being far from my stepdad; she was upset about not sitting next to my husband.

My in-laws offered to switch seats with her, but she declined. She sat there for a mere two minutes, then declared, 'no,I'm not okay with this,' stood up, and vanished. No one noticed her absence until the staff asked if they should serve the empty seats.

That's when I realized that she and my stepdad had bolted from the wedding, and my brother confirmed that she'd taken back her gifts, returned to the hotel, and refused to come back. I was furious, but I refused to let her steal my thunder. I soldiered on like a trooper, smiling like nothing had happened.

My Maid of Honor began her own investigation, quietly chatting with my aunt (Mother Gothel's sister).

MOH: 'It's insane how she (Gothel) can do this to her (me) on the biggest day of her life.'

Aunt: 'I agree, its her biggest day and now she's in the hotel room crying.'

This, see you next Tuesday, essentially meant that it was Mother Gothel's grand day, and I was cast as the villain in her soap opera.

From my table, I noticed my aunt walking up to family members on Mother Gothel's side. Almost everyone quietly got up and left before the appetizers were even served. I knew something was up, so I followed them. I caught up with them in the parking lot, clutching the gifts they had taken back from the gift table.

They “didn't want me to take it personally, but they had to console their sister”. They told me to “see it from her perspective—it was the biggest day of her life”. I won't drag this part out, but I felt crushed and betrayed.

I cried for 10 minutes while hugging my stepmom, then decided it was enough sad tears for today, had one of the bridesmaids touch up my makeup, and then returned, acting as if nothing had happened. The party afterward was an absolute blast. We partied like there was no tomorrow. My dad and stepmom even turned the bar into an open bar for us, and I danced until 2 in the morning.

Later, I found out that my awesome step sister had stormed into Mother Gothel's hotel room at 1 in the morning and gave her a piece of her mind. That prompted Mother Gothel to check out and drive three hours back to her hometown at 1am in the morning. She probably knew my stepsister was just one of the many people who would confront her soon.

So, after the wedding, despite all that drama, I consider my wedding day to be the happiest in my life. Now, I'm married to the love of my life and we will live happily ever after, side by side.

As for Gothel? At first I was boiling with rage, but now… I find myself rather numb about the whole situation. Some family members on her side have told me that I was cruel to her and should have included Gothel more in wedding preparations, but I haven't heard a word from her. Strangely, I feel oddly at peace with it.

Of course, there's still that lingering curiosity about what she might say, but deep down, I doubt it would bring me any more happiness. I'll continue to maintain no contact with her, and if anyone asks, I don't have a mother – just an incredibly awesome stepmom who more than fills that role for me. Here's to moving forward and cherishing the family we choose.

Here were the top rated comments from readers after this initial post:


I hate parents who take their child’s wedding and make it all about them. No, Karen, you had your wedding day 20/25/30 years ago, this is your son’s/daughter’s wedding day and you are not the centre of the universe. Move over and let the happy couple enjoy their limelight. Congratulations, OP, on your wedding. I hope you and your husband have a long and happy life together 🙂


Mothers are supposed to think their daughter's wedding day is special - FOR THEIR DAUGHTER (and daughter's new spouse, of course). It's not a day to celebrate the MOB. She's already had a wedding - two of them, in fact. You said you are NC with your mother -I hope that extends to all the uncouth members of her family that TOOK THEIR GIFTS and left.


What I'm most shocked about is your mother's family all leaving AND taking the gifts back. What your mother did is not surprising because she is who she is. She has a severe case of main character syndrome (or what I call SADD - self attention deficit disorder) and since the attention was on you and your husband and not her, she could not remain there.

After all how can she not be the main character at her daughter's wedding? Instead she had to flounce out AND take her gift. I imagine after that she went back to the hotel room and started texting her family. And amazingly they agreed with her, and TOOK BACK THEIR GIFTS TOO. That is the most shocking thing to me. No manners, no etiquette, and no class.

I'm really glad to see your father and step mother up for you and make your wedding the party you wanted. I know you said both he and your mother handled the divorce poorly but it seems he is much better off being away from your mother and found a good second wife.

Congrats on your wedding OP, I'm sorry your mother was so terrible growing up and at your wedding but now you're free of it all. Your best revenge is a life well lived without her in it.


YOUR wedding day is HER biggest day? Talk about Main Character syndrome. The whole bunch are insane gone berserk. I am so happy you have a supportive dad, stepmother and step sister, as well as good friends. Sounds like a good supportive group.

As for Mother Gothel et al, well f*** her with a cactus. Sideways. Just be careful if/when you get pregnant; like a shark scenting blood, she may scent another golden opportunity to bask in the spotlight. These idiots usually need the grandma points. I can see her swanning in because you Neeed her. Barf. That thing needs a garbage disposal.


So, none of those people will be invited to any baby showers right?

The OP responded here:


Nope. They are all blocked and gone. If the want to talk to me they can mail a letter and I can throw it in the recycling bin.

So, do you think the OP made the right choice regarding how she handled this situation? Should she continue to remail no contact with her mother?

Sources: Reddit
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