Whenever we receive a wedding invitation, we go into the situation knowing that there are likely some stipulations involved, like no children allowed or no wearing of certain colors.
But spouses not being invited seems a bit extreme, insisted the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
But future bride and Redditor TAplusonedrama was adamant that each person who attended had to have a meaningful relationship with the bride and groom prior to the wedding, otherwise they would not be allowed to attend.
When there was an overwhelming number of declined invitations, the Original Poster (OP) wondered why they were siding against the happy couple.
They asked the sub:
“AITA for my reasons for no plus-ones at my wedding, causing
The OP had specific criteria in place for who would be invited to their wedding.
“I’m getting married and like every other bride, I too have certain rules I want for my wedding to go smoothly.”
“One of them is the no plus ones rule. Only people named in the invitation are invited.”
“The criteria I have for people who will get to bring their partners are:”
“1. BOTH my fiancé and I know of your partner and have met them. If I know your partner and my fiancé doesn’t, that disqualifies them and vice versa.”
“2. If I’d personally go to dinner with you and your partner.”
“3. If I’d invite your partner as a separate person anyway and not just because they’re your partner.”
“4. If your partner is also a friend of mine.”
“Those who meet that criteria get to bring their partners. If they don’t, then they don’t bring them. Simple.”
“That also excludes long-term relationships, engaged couples, and married couples as well.”
“We know it might seem harsh but those are the rules we’ve decided to set so we can be more comfortable.”
“It has nothing to do with budget or venue capacity. Purely our choice.”
Many people declined due to the specific rules.
“Several people have denied the invitation to our wedding due to these rules.”
“One of them is also my cousin. My cousin has been engaged to this girl for 1 year now and he was upset we didn’t include her.”
“The reason she was excluded was that my fiancé hasn’t met her and she’s not a person I’d personally be friends with either.”
“I told my cousin how heartbroken I am that he will not come to the wedding due to this.”
“I also expressed my distaste for the fact that he can’t be away from his fiancée for a few hours to honor me and my fiancé. Couples don’t have to be together the whole time.”
This led to an argument.
“Then he basically told me I’m being extremely disrespectful and a huge AH. I asked him to explain and he said word for word:”
“‘Let me get this clear. You want me to come to honor you at your wedding, honor your love story and all that, but you can’t respect me enough to invite my fiancée?'”
“He continued, ‘I can be without my fiancée for several hours. Heck, we even spend days apart on vacations with our own separate friend groups sometimes. What bothers me is not me being away from my fiancée for some hours, but the fact that you excluded her for those reasons.'”
“I told him those are the rules. Take it or leave it.”
“He says he finds my rules extremely disrespectful but since it’s my wedding, he has no say in it.”
“I told him good and to stop bulls**tting me then and show his support and respect by attending.”
“He said that while he respects my extremely exclusive and disrespectful rules, I am a fool to believe that he will care more about valuing my wedding over his fiancée.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes here
Some thought the bride’s rules were incredibly obnoxious.
“They obviously made the rules to exclude people, since it isn’t a budget or venue issue, so don’t be shocked when people don’t appreciate you playing mean girl with their partners.”
“They told your cousin that his partner doesn’t meet the qualification of being someone they would even WANT to be friends with. Your rules, your consequences. YTA.” – DakiLapin
“YTA. Your rules are obnoxious. I got exhausted just reading them.”
“But it’s even beyond that. It’s your wedding. You can make whatever shitty rules you want. it’s on you to then accept the fact that some people won’t attend. You told your cousin ‘take it or leave it,’ and then when he chose ‘leave it,’ you threw a tantrum.”
“You have a right to make rules. People have a right to not attend because of those rules. You reap what you sow. The world doesn’t revolve around you.” – ElizaThornberry4
“One of the rules is, ‘If I’d personally go to dinner with you and your partner.'”
“I’m just laughing at how according to the ‘rules,’ there are some couples who they have both met before but OP decided they would never go to dinner with them so they’re out!”
“Sorry, Mark, your wife can’t come as we’ve determined we would not wish to dine with her.” – not_all_kevins
“I’m also just confused as to how awkward this wedding will be if people choose to attend and follow the rules. Like, is there going to be dancing?”
“My husband would feel differently about going on a boys’ trip or a brother-sister vacation than he would about standing around awkwardly watching other couples slow dance because the bride and groom didn’t want to go to dinner with me.”
“I also am curious how she’s explaining this to other people because, ‘well, your fiancé isn’t someone I’d want to go to dinner with or be friends with’ is going to likely damage some relationships, regardless of OP’s surprised Pikachu reaction to choosing the option of ‘leave it.'”
“OP may have explained to guests, ‘you don’t get a plus one because we had specific criteria,’ which might be accepted broadly, but if she’s just walking around telling people that ‘I don’t like your wife or fiancé enough to allow them to attend my wedding,’ then she shouldn’t be surprised if people brand her as an a**hole.” – maidrey
“She’s also TA for planning a wedding that won’t be fun for the majority of its attendees. Weddings aren’t JUST about the bride and groom. Ideally, they should be fun for your guests, too.”
“Plus ones are there for guests to have the comfort of people they know and love present to enjoy and spend time with at a big event. No one wants to come alone to a huge party full of mostly strangers.”
“And her cousin is right, it IS disrespectful and rude to pick and choose like that and alienate the long-term partners and spouses of your friends and family.”
“Way to ensure you will never be included in their intimate lives and future events, either. YTA, OP.” – Predd1tor
Others also pointed out that potential guests had a right to decline due to those rules.
“You can have whatever rules you like, but you can’t act like you won’t have some people not coming.”
“You say ‘take it or leave it’ but also expect ‘..support and respect by attending.’ The disconnect there is so weird to me.”
“You want people unhappy with how you treat them to treat you with some kind of respect and show up?”
“If people were to think like you, there are quite a few weddings of people in your wedding that you wouldn’t be invited to. Do you feel that’s fair, or do you expect their respect to be invited?”
“YTA.” – haveitgood
“Cousin: I won’t attend because I find your rule offensive.”
“OP: My rules, my wedding.”
“Cousin: Cool. So I’m not attending.”
“OP: BUT WAHHHHHHH.”
“Actions, meet Consequences.” – elevatormusicjams
“You want people to come celebrate your marriage and your relationship by asking them to leave their spouse or long-term partner at home?”
“You are misusing the word plus one. That is intended for truly single people. Established couples are to be treated as a unit.”
“Sure. Your wedding and your rules and all that bullshit, but if you create bulls**t rules like this, you have to expect people to decline. If I had a relative tell me my spouse wasn’t invited because circumstances hadn’t allowed the two of them to meet yet, I’d decline, too.” – MaroonFahrenheit
“Forget just the invitation, don’t even expect gifts. If my husband wasn’t invited and I was told what the basis for his exclusion was, I would not be doing the ‘polite’ gesture of still sending a gift.”
“If my husband’s presence is so intolerable, that you’d rather have me not attend than him accompany me, then we won’t impose our presence in gift/money form, either.” – anglerfishtacos
“I can’t believe how many people still don’t understand how f**king boring weddings are. Especially for the people attending, but even the people in them. It’s a whirlwind for the bride and groom, and even the wedding party, but for everyone else? It’s a lot of sitting around doing absolutely nothing.”
“Let people bring a freaking friend, it will literally have zero bearing on your own enjoyment of the wedding, but it will ensure that the people don’t remember it as a terrible/boring event for them.”
“Also, ‘spouse’ isn’t a plus 1. If someone invited me to a wedding and said my wife can’t come, then neither of us will be there, and I’d be seriously reconsidering if I even consider you to be a friend.” – DifficultMinute
Some thought the OP was the epitome of a bridezilla.
“YTA. Please don’t destroy Tokyo.” – ZombieZookeeper
“The audacity of saying take it or leave it then getting mad when people leave it.”
“Get over yourself, bridezilla, YTA!” – GenX-IA
“YTA. What people will remember about your wedding is your rules. Family and friends will refer to you as a bridezilla. And by the way, don’t expect an invite to your cousin’s wedding.” – stargazer-02
“Not just invalidate but DEMAND they come without their fiance, even after a discussion on OP being TA.”
“YTA and you know it. You just want to control everyone’s relationships because it has nothing to do with headcount. You are such a snob that you think you get to decide whose relationship is important.”
“You wanted exclusive, you’ve got it. I hope you get about 10 people at your wedding.” – babcock27
The OP might have been correct that they had every right to make the rules for their wedding as specific as they wanted, the subReddit insisted those rules would not be without consequences.
The bride may have thought that a guest list that had been thoroughly weeded out would only create a fun experience for their wedding day, but this would surely lead to other problems.