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Recovering Cancer Patient Balks After Sister Demands She Lose Weight And Wear Wig To Wedding

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Certain events just bring out the worst in people.

Weddings are at the top of that list.

So concerned with the presentation, party, and pomp that often the little things like love and kinship are forgotten along the way.

So, when your invitation to a wedding is accompanied by a litany of demands about how to present yourself on the day, what do you do?

That was the question facing Redditor and Original Poster (OP) tabby_cat13 when she came to the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit for judgment.

She asked:

“AITA for not attending my ‘sisters’ wedding?”

OP began with a quick background.

“I (female 32) and my sister (f 28) are not close anymore.”

“She’s getting married to a person I never met, only heard of him.”

“And the one time she said anything about him she said she had contracted chlamydia from him.”

“This was when they first started dating one year ago. So I didn’t get a very positive impression of him at all.”


They’re getting married.”

Then she got to the start of the problem.

“And the one time in a year my sister actually calls me is to tell me that I have to wear a wig at the wedding.”

“And she also told me to lose weight and instructed me what to say if I get any questions on what I do for a living.”

“I didn’t say anything and hung up.”

Then she explained why these requests ‘needed’ to be made.

“So, a little background story about me.”

“I had cancer last year and lost my hairdo to chemotherapy.”

“I also have gained weight because I haven’t been as active as I usually am.”

“I struggle with fatigue after treatment.”

“So, I have short hair and a few extra pounds and I also don’t work right now.”

“I am on disability benefits.”

“The reason she wanted me to do all this is that they didn’t want me to take her spotlight from her.”

“Like I mentioned I hung up when she called.”

“I was speechless.”

OP declined the invitation.

“So I texted her the day after and told her I wouldn’t be attending the wedding. She called me again and started to scream at me so I hung up on her and blocked her number.”

“I even got nasty messages from my sister’s partner’s sister and one of the parents.”

“I never even met them. Let alone know their names.”

“So, now one week later, I have gotten so many messages from my aunt, one of my cousins, and my grandmother.”

“Telling me I am selfish for not doing this for my sister. I don’t have my phone in my bedroom at night. So, when I woke up yesterday I had 25 messages and 12 missed calls.”

“I haven’t been bothered to answer any of them. And I am not going to.”

She tried to reach out to her family for guidance.

“I tried to talk to my mom, but she doesn’t want to be involved.”

“She’s just passive-aggressive kind of. My dad doesn’t say anything about it at all.”

“Luckily my other four cousins support me and are totally on my side. My uncle is also supporting me on this.”

OP was left to wonder,

“So AITA for not attending the wedding?”

Having explained the situation, OP turned to Reddit for judgment.

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: NTA

Some offered possible scripting. 

“She’s embarrassed that you had cancer, she’s embarrassed that you gained weight, she’s embarrassed that you are disabled…”

“Tell her you can’t go to the wedding because you are embarrassed that she is your sister … NTA” ~ ifnotnowtellmewhen

‘”I wish my sister and her fiance well and happiness in their wedding, however, I was told explicitly that my appearance as a result of recovering from cancer would be an embarrassment to her.”‘

“‘And in order to attend, I would need to lose weight, wear a wig, and lie to people about my job, to be considered acceptable.”‘

“‘This was deeply hurtful and not something I was comfortable doing.”‘

“‘I understand that everyone tries to look nice at weddings, but requiring that I lie to people and telling me my body and hair are unacceptable is fundamentally telling me that I am not wanted.”‘

“‘If my honest presence with my body is seen as disruptive and unacceptable to her day, then I don’t wish to disrupt it.”‘ ~ Irish_Whiskey

“I would have gone for something more passive-aggressive such as “‘I’m sorry that my getting cancer ruined my sister’s vision of perfect family wedding photos. “‘~ username-generica

“I’m quite b*tchy myself so I would probably have to add a line about how impressive it is that they were able to overcome their early challenges when her future husband gave her an STI.” ~ Mirabai503

Others assumed OP’s sister had lied to the rest of the family.

“Yeah, I definitely think she lied or omitted what she said to OP.”

“I don’t see how people wouldn’t be sympathetic to a cancer survivor who’s still recovering from chemo.”

“I also bet sis didn’t like the attention OP got while in treatment.” ~ WickedLilThing

“NTA … This was also my concern.”

“Hopefully the relatives that are upset don’t know yet OP’s side of the story.”

“In my experience, people like the sister tell lies to play the victim and the actual victim doesn’t talk about what actually happened because they are emotionally tired.”

“The sister should be happy OP is healthy enough to be able to attend her wedding.” ~ CandycaneConfetti

Commenters pointed out that family doesn’t mean blood.

“NTA, being blood-related doesn’t mean you have any obligation to someone and their wants/needs, especially when you aren’t even in contact with them enough to know the person they’re getting married to.”

“You don’t need to feel bad for doing right by yourself just because society says you have to be nice to blood relations.” ~ AxeKaila

“Exactly, I’m so sick of when people say ‘You have to love them, you’re family!”’

“Blood relations don’t inherently mean anything.”

“When you’re an adult, your friends can be your family.”

“I’m so sick of the idea that you have to forgive someone for screwing you over even when they aren’t sorry, just because you share the same parents.” ~ King-Rex420

OP did return with news and some answers to frequent questions.


“I just woke up.”

“And OMG… I can’t believe the response.”

“I just want to say thank you so much for all the support. I couldn’t even imagine it would actually mean so much with all the support from strangers on the internet❤️❤️ thank you ❤️❤️❤️”

“So I think I just gonna stay low for a few days.”

“Have all of the calm down for a bit and not make a big scene.”

“And I just texted one of my best friends that I recently reconnected with and asked her if we could do something that day of the wedding.”

“I told her how my sister’s fiancé”s family and my three other family members were treating me and she couldn’t even respond to it she was speechless.”

“She already knew what my sister said.”

“As for my mom, I texted her and she didn’t know what my sister had said (my sister had a totally different story) and is totally on my side now.”

“But she is still staying out of it. Which is totally fine.”

“This is my sister’s problem.”

“But for the rest of them( my aunt, one cousin, and grandmother) they just think I should do as my sister tells me still. One of my cousin’s siblings texted me but he is still on my side too.”

“It’s not so much cancer itself she is embarrassed by, but it is the way I look and have changed looks after treatment.”

“And there are a lot of people in the wedding who don’t know I’ve been sick.”

“Last time they saw my hair was down to my hips.”

“So if they saw me with only 5 cm hair they are going to ask some questions. So that’s what my sister wants to avoid.”

“And yes, she has ALWAYS been the golden child.”

“If she said something to me. And I responded if it wasn’t that nice, the millisecond I open my mouth a few family members would go at me.”

“So after a while, I just stopped.”

“And that is one of the reasons we are no longer close.”

“We do get along at family events and meet-ups but no more than that.”

“So the day of the wedding I am going to hang out with my childhood BFF and we are bringing our kitties for a kitty play date 😁 so now I have something to look forward to that day ❤️”

Of course, weddings aren’t the only place we find this sort of superficial nonsense.

Interviews, first dates, and birthday parties are also subject to these sorts of demands.

They do, however, become especially painful when someone you love forces them on you.

Remember that you are fine as you are, you are worthy of taking up whatever space you like, and your real family will see that.

Written by Frank Geier

Frank Geier (pronouns he/him) is a nerd and father of three who recently moved to Alabama. He is an avid roleplayer and storyteller occasionally masquerading as a rational human.