in , , ,

Bride Sets Off Family By Publicly Excluding ‘Adopted Sister’ From Certain Wedding Photos

Wedding photographer taking family portrait
Kobus Louw/Getty Images

Throwaway Reddit account Reasonable_Read222 recently posted about their wedding photo set up.

The Original Poster (OP) recently got married and intentionally excluded their “adopted” sister from family wedding photos.

This caused quite a kerfuffle amongst her family members, driving the OP to subReddit “Am I the A**Hole?” (AITA).

She asked:

“AITA for excluding my “adopted sister” from family photos?”

She went on to explain:

“This is a throwaway and I’m using fake names.”

“I am [26-year-old Female] and my ‘adopted sister’ Ally is [14-year-old Female].”

“The way we’re ‘related’ is that my younger brother Michael [24-year-old Male] has been with his wife Maya [24-year-old Female] since their freshman year of high school.”

“Maya and Ally had a really bad home life and my mom is very much a ‘my home is open to everyone’ type of person…”

“…so over that year Maya began spending more and more time at our house, eventually bringing Ally over as well since she was always babysitting.”

“By the time Michael and Maya were 16 years old, Maya basically lived in the guest room and Ally spent after school, most weekends, holidays, and summer vacation at our house.”

“My mom and dad say that they love both Maya and Ally like their own children. My other siblings [18-year-old Male and 16-year-old Female] also treat her like she’s a part of the family.”

“Even after Maya and Michael moved out, Ally is still at their house the same amount, if not more than she was before.”

“Now to preface, I have nothing against Ally. She’s a good kid and I make an effort to be nice to her. However, I’ve never really liked how she was foisted into our lives.”

“She’s not actually adopted and she *still has parents and her own family*. Yet my parents spend so much time and resources on her, it’s ridiculous.”

“Everyone else has started unironically calling her their daughter or sister and I’ve refused. I just don’t consider her to be family.”

“Anyways, I got married recently, which is where the issues start. I invited Ally to the wedding, of course, and she came with all of my other family.”

“When we were doing pictures of the wedding parties, I decided that I wanted one with all of my immediate family (so my parents, my siblings, and Maya, and Maya and Michael’s daughter).”

“My mom brought Ally up to come take the picture with us and I was forced to tell her no. My mom started to get upset but then Ally said it was okay and sat down by herself.”

“My mom isn’t a very confrontational person so she didn’t make a big deal of it but then everyone else realized that Ally wasn’t there and they got mad as well.”

“Ultimately, we took the photo how I wanted it because they ‘didn’t want to do this at my wedding’ but my entire family is pissed at me now.”

“My mom said that Ally cried when she got home because I don’t love her, which I don’t. I feel like they forced into a position where I had to do an a**hole thing by forcing this kid onto me.”

“I don’t think I should have to consider her family if I don’t want to.”


The OP went on to make some clarifications on her original post.

“Edit: After the ceremony but before the reception, the wedding party and both of our close family’s took photos.”

“I did not include Ally in this photo session and she sat with the rest of the regular guests waiting for dinner. I did not intentionally exclude her from any of the photos taken.”

“I’m sure she’s in some of them from throughout the night especially because she was there with my family. I hope that clears some things up.”

Redditors weighed in by declaring:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Redditors decided:

“I’m so sorry but YTA.”

“Unless my math is failing me, this child entered your life when you were 16 and she was about 4 and you already had 3 other biological siblings younger than you but older than her.”

“Your words sound resentful as if you started being neglected at that time.”

“But you’re taking it out on Ally like her sister/babysitter removing her from her really bad home life as a preschooler was her fault. Like she had designs on worming her way into your family.”

“That’s not what happened. I hope you understand that. Perhaps therapy could help.”

“EDIT FOR CLARITY. YTA Because you were a dick to Ally at your wedding. You could have gotten your immediate family photos in a much nicer fashion.”

“EDIT 2 (because people keep trying to give me information that I already have):I know Ally is not adopted. I know she is not OP’s family.”

“I know that Maya is really Ally’s sister. I know that OP has every ‘right’ to exclude whoever she feels like on her wedding day. I know she owes Ally nothing.”

“I still think she’s an AH for the way she behaved. I’m not sure why everybody wants to change my mind about it.”

“EDIT 3: Michael and Maya’s relationship did not start when they were 16. I question my ‘math’ because I’m not sure how old people are when they’re freshmen.”

“I was 14/15 so I went with 14.” – Particular_Title42

“Against the grain a bit but NAH”

“Judging by the ages, you were practically out the house when Ally became a factor into your family’s lives.”

“It does seem like you didn’t have a chance to develop the same relationship with her as the rest of your family.”

“She is family to them. She is not family to you. That is not really anyone’s fault, but kinda how the circumstances came out.”

“You have no official relationship and no personal relationship.”

“While you could have taken the extra photograph to keep the peace the day of, the fact is, you would have felt weird…”

“…including someone neither you nor your fiance consider family in a photograph, and likely preferred the photograph without her as is.”

“If that’s the one you chose to display at any point, it’s just tabling the same fight for another time.”

“She was essentially invited to keep the peace, as is, not because you wanted to celebrate your wedding with her. You just didn’t mind her coming along.”

“It’s your wedding day and supposed to be celebrating with family and the people supportive of the couple- which Ally technically is not because you guys have no real relationship.”

“There might actually be a slight A H to the parents- if they want you to accept Ally as a sister, what have they actually done to build a relationship between you guys?”

“It kinda seems like they expected you to just have one, and it doesn’t work like that with older children.”

“We actually see a lot of that in this sub with step and half siblings- this is really the same scenario.”

“OP just has no personal relationship to Ally, so it makes sense OP would feel weird about a  stranger to her being in the wedding photos” – whichwitch9

“Wow, massively weird energy on this comment thread.”


“I think a bottom-line principle is that nobody should ever be forced to be family with anyone, PERIOD.”

“All these AITA commenters seem to grasp that just fine when a stepsibling or stepparent is forced onto someone. That framework applies here.”

“If you truly are kind to Ally, that’s all that you owe her. My god, you are allowed to take a family photo at your wedding.” – MaybeHughes

“NTA, she’s a good family friend, she is not a SIL, she is the sister in laws sister. She has parents, a family and a bedroom that she goes home to at night.”

“Although your parents are invested in her, she is not your sister, adopted or otherwise.” – newprairiegirl

“I’m gonna go against the grain and say NTA- is was your wedding and you and your husband should be who is in charge of who’s in the pictures.”

“It’s entirely your choice to take her on as a sister regardless of how your family feels about her and treats her” – EveningAd6728

The OP went on to update readers.

“Edit 2: Maya and Ally are sisters. Sorry, forgot to explicitly say that in my post.”

“Final edit:”

“The people who are agreeing with me are starting to convince me that I’m wrong.”

“To the people calling my parents nasty things in my pms or just saying that they aren’t good people: you’re dead wrong.”

“My mom is the most caring and kind-hearted woman in the world and I should have made that more clear in my post.”

“To be clear, I am also not a monster. I don’t mistreat Ally. I get her birthday and Christmas gifts every year.”

“However I am starting to understand that I did do a sh*tty thing by publicly excluding her at my wedding because I wanted it to be how exactly how I imagined…”

“…especially because my mom was apparently blindsided by my feelings.”

“I was 16-18 when Ally started coming around a lot and I didn’t form the same bond everyone else did.”

“I never super liked being around kids, including my sister who by all accounts behaved way worse than Ally ever did. But I recognize that she’s become a part of our family.”

“And I think I’m going to make more of an effort to get to know her properly, because I do know she is very mature and intelligent for her age.”

“Also, I don’t mean to minimize what Maya and Ally have gone through.”

“By saying she wasn’t physically abused, I more-so meant to explain why she hadn’t been legally removed from her mother’s house.”

“She does have extended family that actually cares about her but they live at minimum an hour away so she stays with my parents the majority of the time.”

“Thank you for all of your input.”

“Family” does not have a clear definition.

Written by B. Miller

B. is a creative multihyphenate who enjoys the power and versatility of the written word. She enjoys hiking, great food and drinks, traveling, and vulnerable conversation. Raised below the Mason Dixon, thriving above it. (she/her)