Here's the story:
My sister is having a Destination wedding in the Dominican Republic (all-inclusive). It'll cost me $2800 dollars to attend (there's no option to adjust the dates/costs. it's for a full week). My sister would be very upset if I don't attend. My parents say I should go, and that I'm being selfish for saying I'm not going.
My sister lives far away and we see eachother once a year due to cost/ busy schedules. I don't make a ton of money, but I have enough money to attend the wedding and my parents and my sister know it. While I really want to support her --and would attend a local/ more reasonabley priced destination wedding in a heartbeat-- $2800 just seems too much.
And less importantly, I have zero desire to go to an all-inclusive resort as I don't drink or enjoy suntanning. In my defence, I've worked hard for my money and I sacrificed quite a lot to be where I am financially. And while I have accumulated significant savings, it isn't because I earn a big salary.
But, because I work long hours, and very rarely spend money on anything beyond the bare essentials. The cost of this trip would exceed the value of my worldly possessions including my car. It would also require me using a full week of what little time I get off work.
I really don't know if I'm being selfish, cheap, and callous or if I'm being reasonable. Last night I almost booked the ticket out of guilt, but, I couldn't do it and have since resolved not to go. So what do you guys think? AITA not wanting to attend?
NTA - $2800 is incredibly unreasonable to expect anyone to spend unless they make really good money and can fully justify it. You are not being unreasonable at all, your family is.
The parents are being the major assholes for trying to guilt OP into going. If that were me in their shoes I would without a doubt be unable to go. Not everyone can afford to run away from everyday responsibilities of work and bills to get away for a week to a resort.
Nta, if you make people spend 3k to go to your wedding and complain about people not going you’re a major asshole.
I think destination weddings are really selfish. I’d send them a lovely present with a heartfelt letter, but I wouldn’t go. A week of vacation is a lot to ask from someone as well as several thousand dollars. Don’t go overboard explaining yourself. Just tell everyone a consistent, simple message, “I can’t attend
‘s wedding, but I wish them all the happiness in the world!”
NAH. It’s not really about whether you can afford it, it’s about whether it’s in line with your priorities. If it’s not, send your regrets with a thoughtful gift.
NTA. Anyone having a destination wedding should be prepared for people not wanting to go. When spending money on a vacation, people like to choose the location, not have it dictated by someone else. People want to save their vacation time for their vacation, not someone else 's.
NAH. She is allowed to plan a expensive destination wedding. Her friends or family are allowed to decline. Make it clear that you're not declining because you hate them. Send them a nice gift, or plan a trip to see them well after the wedding. "I'd love to congratulate you in person and hear all about when the dust has settled! You can share all your honeymoon pics! Have fun!"
Nta. I noticed you mentioned in a comment that you would be dipping into your retirement fund for the money. You used $ I'm assuming you're either USA or Canada. There's a MASSIVE tax penalty for taking that money out early. You shouldn't consider it like a savings account, and you definitely shouldn't tell your family that you kind of have it, if it's in a 401k or IRA you don't have the money
And emmmmme_in_wien said:
NTA. Anyone who plans a destination wedding without covering/offsetting costs is TA. If you had a couple years notice to save up that amount of cash I would find the situation slightly more reasonable (it doesn’t say in the OP whether you did or not), but then there would still be the risk of needing to use that money to cover an emergency before the wedding week.
It would be nice if you were able to support your sister’s marriage in person, but I (as a 3rd party) wouldn’t call you TA for not attending a $3000 week of stress.