It’s never easy for children of broken homes to immediately accept their step-parents.
Even if they don’t say or do anything to upset them, deliberately or not, they always serve as a reminder that their parents’ marriage didn’t work out.
In some cases, it just takes a little bit of time for children to grow to love them as if they were members of their family all along.
Unfortunately, not everyone develops a loving relationship with their step-parents.
Including Redditor imgettingmarried56, whose relationship with her stepmother was only further complicated by her lack of inclusion at her and her father’s wedding.
So when the original poster (OP)’s own wedding came around, she didn’t feel much guilt in not making her stepmother particularly prominent.
A decision that did not go unnoticed by her stepmother, who even threatened retaliation.
Wondering if she was being small, the OP took to the subReddit “Am I The A**hole” (AITA), where she asked fellow Redditors:
“AITA for not wanting my step mom to be involved in my wedding since I wasn’t involved in her and my dads?”
The OP explained how her less-than-affectionate relationship with her stepmother affected her decision as to how involved she would be in her upcoming wedding.
“My (24 F[emale]) parents got divorced back when I was 11 years old and shared custody of both myself and my younger brother (20 M[ale]).”
“A few months after the split, my dad introduced my brother and me to my now stepmom, who we’ll call ‘Mary’.”
“My dad never gave Mary any kinds of boundaries when it came to dealing with my brother and me.”
“So growing up she’d often cross the line, and my dad wouldn’t do anything to stand up for my brother and me… and ALWAYS sided with Mary.”
“I endured a lot of emotional and verbal abuse from both my dad and Mary going up.”
“Fast forward years later, my dad and I now have a pretty good relationship, and I’ve forgiven him.”
“I’ve forgiven Mary but don’t have a close relationship with her.”
“We’re cordial with each other but not close by any means.”
“I’ve never gotten an actual apology from either of them, I’ve just chosen to forgive and let it go.”
“But never forget.”
“My dad and Mary had their wedding in early 2020, right before COVID.”
“I was not involved at all in the wedding.”
“I wasn’t in the wedding party and my boyfriend and I sat at a table with other 4 people in total (including) us.”
“It was essentially like the leftover table IMO.”
“My younger brother was in the wedding party, as a groomsman, so he was sat at the head table, the whole situation just made me feel pretty sh*tty that I wasn’t really involved in the wedding at all, besides for a few pictures.”
“So now bf (or fiancée now) and I have been engaged for a year, and the wedding is next month.”
“My dad is going to be walking me down the aisle.”
“I sat my mom, dad, brother, and both my grandparents in the front row for the ceremony.”
“Mary is sat in the row behind them.”
“My dad asked me why Mary was sitting in the row behind him and why she can’t sit with him?”
“I told him that the front row is for my IMMEDIATE family only and that’s how I want it.”
“Apparently she is unhappy and uncomfortable with this, and feels that she should be more involved in the wedding.”
“I told my dad ok sucks for her?”
“I was unhappy and uncomfortable at her and my dad’s wedding, and I sucked it up for a day.”
“My dads financially pitching in to help for the wedding and Mary has threatened to take away the financial help from ‘my dad and her.'”
“I told her to do whatever she wants and that I frankly don’t really care.”
“She’s been bad-mouthing me to both my dad and my brother saying how I’m a major AH for doing and after ‘all she’s done for me.'”
“My brother thinks I’m in the right and it’s my day.”
“My dad is, of course, siding with Mary, and understands that it’s my day but feels like I should be considerate of her and her feelings.”
“If I was to sit Mary beside my dad I’d have to move either one of my grandparents, my mom, or my brother to the second row.”
“There is not room for all of them.”
“AITA for not sitting her with my dad and involving her more?”
Fellow Redditors weighed in on where they believed the OP fell in this particular situation by declaring:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- YTA: You’re the A**hole
- ESH: Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
The Reddit community agreed that the OP was not the a**hole for refusing to sit her stepmother with the rest of her family.
Everyone agreed that after being largely excluded from her father and step-mother’s wedding, she was under no obligation to make her stepmother more prominent on her own, with many even saying she shouldn’t even let her father walk her down the aisle, and others pointing out there was an easy solution to this problem.
“You should ask your father, since it was just 2 years ago, to seriously answer your question.”
“Why was it okay for Mary to not involve you as ‘family’ in her wedding, but not okay for you to do the same.”
“Why should you be ‘considerate’ of her feelings when he didn’t ask Mary to be considerate of yours.”
“Just sit quietly and wait for him to answer.”
“Don’t get distracted, don’t let him change the subject.”
“Ask him to please explain his thinking here.”
“You of course aren’t going to get an answer, but be patient.”
“Tell him if he can give you a reasonable explanation as to why he thinks differently about your wedding then he did about his own, you can solve this problem.”
“Then, enjoy watching him squirm and bluster and sidetrack the conversation, end the convo when you get bored, and put Mary at the kid’s table.”
“Oh, and be sure, Mary is gonna f*ck with you on your wedding day, so have a plan for that.”- mfruitfly
“Maybe your brother can walk you down the aisle, and your Dad and Mary can enjoy their view from the leftover table.”- furryoso
“NTA did your dad have an explanation for the difference in treatment between you and your brother at their wedding?”
“If that explanation hasn’t happened, then I think it’s long overdue.”- nuggets256
“The solution to this is simple: Your Dad, after walking you down the aisle, sits with Mary in the second row.”
“Everyone is happy.”
“Your dad doesn’t feel you slighted his wife, you get to make the point that she isn’t immediate family and you can ride off into the sunset as content as possible.”
“YNTA for wanting to sit her in the second row.”- Applesbabe
“NTA tell your Dad that if he wants to sit with Mary, he can join her in the second row.”
“Unfortunately there is no room in the first row.”
“Leave it up to him to decide where he wants to sit.”- winesis
“Your day, not theirs.”
“Honestly if was me I’d have both dad and his wife at the reject… I mean overflow table and have them seated in the nosebleed.”
“I mean somewhere else.”
“What goes around comes around.”
‘She apparently can dish it out but can’t handle it in return.”- craddddy
“Is this petty?”
“Are you the AH?”
“No, lol.”- Ok-Context1168
“The is NO way I’d move my mom, grandparents, or brother for her.”
“She needs to suck it up.”- LouisV25
“You should surround yourself with friendly and supportive people.”
“Stepmom isn’t one of those.”- TelephoneLow5829
“NTA because Mary literally did the same thing to you and set the tone you weren’t her family.”
“However, if you want full control, do not accept financial help from your father.”
“I also like the comment that if your dad decides to die on this hill, your brother can walk you down the aisle.”
‘Contingency plans will help keep them from hanging everything over your head.”- whichwitch9
“NTA, but it is weird that you’re seating her apart from her husband.”
“I don’t blame you for wanting to cut her and your dad out of the ceremony the way they did to you, but it’s strange that you’re allowing him to walk you down the aisle.”
“If I were in your position, I would be tempted to have my brother walk me.”
“Dad and his new wife can sit together in the second row.”
“As for the financial assistance, just drop it.”
“Your parents are going to hold financial assistance over your head forever if you allow yourself to remain dependent on it.”- SomeoneYouDontKnow70
Considering their rather fraught relationship, the OP’s stepmother should honestly consider herself lucky that she was included in the wedding at all.
Maybe sitting one row behind the rest of the family might allow the OP’s stepmother to see just how marginalized the OP felt at her wedding.
Which might finally urge her to make the first step in trying to improve their relationship.