Here's the original post:
I (24F) am getting married to my fiancé (24M) and have been going over the guest list. We're planning on a bigger wedding so whoever we want there, we invite.
Before we got together, we were friends in separate romantic relationships. Mine ended decently and I'm still friends with my ex. His did not. She was horrible to him.
I see my ex like a brother/friend now and I want to invite him to my wedding. Originally when I brought this up my fiancé didn't make any comment on it. He's met my friend before and I thought he was fine with it.
A couple weeks later I got a call from my fiancé's sister. She told me that her brother has been asking her for advice because he doesn't want my friend there but doesn't want to come off as jealous. She said it's inappropriate that I even suggested inviting him and said it'd look like I wasn't over him. She even brought up that my friend might try and sabotage the wedding or try to win me back.
I told her it wasn't any of her business and my fiancé should come to me about this, not her. She pushed back saying that I wouldn't tolerate it if he invited his ex. I told her that it was different. His ex is a lying, manipulative bitch. My ex is my friend who I've known since high school, and we didn't work out.
She said, "It should go without saying you don't bring your ex to your wedding." "I'm inviting my friend. It should go without saying if my partner has an issue, he should come to me." We kept going back and forth until I told her that I will talk to Fiancé about this and hung up.
A part of me thinks his sister is exaggerating or that my fiancé is projecting his bad breakup onto me. But he's never brought this up before. I don't know what to do or say to him. Am I being too protective of a friendship vs my partnership? It's his day just as much as mine. WIBTA if I invited my ex to my wedding?
Here's what top commenters had to say:
YTA. The friend doesn't matter, the fiance does. If he is truly your friend, he will understand. Have some respect for your fiance and let him know he is more important. It matters for him to hear that. You are young and you are still learning to be candid with each other without hurting feelings. So it was probably easier for him to talk to his sister. I'm glad she said something but at the same time, she should have minded her own business. Let him know he needs to talk to you on things.
Sooooo you keep referring to the person as your “friend” but they aren’t. They are “your ex that you are friendly with” it’s very different. What’s more important, having your “friend” there or your fiancé? Because your fiancé already said that it makes them uncomfortable so the fact that you have to give it a second thought makes you TA
Purely on the facts, though, and without any background info, I would say YWBTA. You keep saying “my wedding”. Respectfully, it’s not “OP’s wedding”: it’s “OP and OP’s fiancé’s wedding”. You’re marrying your fiancé, not your ex. You also invite guests together. You don’t invite people in a silo, and you should absolutely not be finalizing anyone on the guest list without both of you being on board.
Is it appropriate that your fiancé got his sister involved (or that his sister got herself involved)? No. This should be something that you two discuss together. But your fiancé is afraid to talk to you about this. That should give you pause. You’re planning a wonderful event devoted to your love for each other, and you two won’t even talk to each other about something as simple as a guest list?!
And OP commented:
I'll give a timeline. Friend and I knew each other since 9th grade and got together in 11th grade. College 1st year we went to the same school and I became friends with Future Fiancé. Shortly before College 2nd year started, Future Fiance had a big breakup.
Friend and I drifted apart and broke it off a few months after that in September of 2020. Fiance and I got together that December. Fiance proposed last March. There was no cheating involved, but Friend and I realized we weren't as close as we used to be Summer 2020 when we went home for break so it was inevitable.
Last night we sat down and I asked about Sister's call. Fiance admitted he’d been venting and asking her for advice. He knew she was going to bring it up to me but didn’t know she’d bring up his ex or yell over the phone. I asked why he didn't talk to me about it. Fiance explained it was few things.
One, his ex cheated on him a lot with "friends' ' while dating. ("Just texting my friend. Hanging out with friend tonight." etc.) Second; he didn't realize how much it bothered him until he thought about it and by then we already agreed on Friend as a guest. Third, he’s known Friend a few years now and neither of us ever made a move.
He felt he was being paranoid and didn't want to come off controlling, especially since Friend is in our friend group and if he was the only one not invited Fiance worried he’d look insecure. Someone made a good point that we never established a boundary. Friend is still a friend, but I love my Fiance. I said I didn't want to cut out an entire friendship if I didn't have to and we compromised.
Since the whole friend group mainly sticks to groupchats, Friend can only talk to us via the groupchat, in person, or public socials. Fiance offered to do the same with a different friend of his that he used to have a crush on. (I didn't about that until he said it, but I told him he didn't have to). He also asked that I double check with him when Friend attends any group hangouts.
For the wedding, we might ask Friend to come to the reception but not the ceremony to avoid drama.
Friend has asked in the groupchat (no official invitations yet, but the whole group knows we're planning) if he can bring his girlfriend to the reception but not the ceremony since (his words) "don't think my friends' big day is the best place to bring a date, but if there's a good party afterwards, I'd love for you guys to get to know her."
We talked over how it all made Fiance feel and I do feel better going forward. He apologized for not coming to me and I apologized for making him feel like I couldn't be trusted to talk to. Ngl, I'm still little freaked out he's going to secretly hate everything I do now since he felt like he couldn’t talk to me. (But I'm just being a paranoid idiot)
Note: Some noted I was too fixated on Sister and I agree. It was unexpected and I got too defensive. Fiance didn't know she'd be so aggressive, but clearly the problem is with me. Something has to be wrong with me if he'd go to her instead of me about this.
It's shaken lots of confidence I've had, but I needed the reality check. Communication is crucial for marriage. Those that pointed out their exes-to-friends made me feel better too. Like most, I hope to keep most of my friends in my life, but my husband has to come first. Thank you for your kindness and advice.