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Emo Teen Balks After Her Mom Refuses To Let Her Attend Sister’s Wedding Due To Her Outfit

Photo of an emo girl, black and pink hair and mouth rings
Lilly Roadstones/Getty Images

Oh, kids and their fashion choices.

The understanding that one’s choices in attire can be a flag of self-expression has become clearer over time.

But does that mean that people can wear anything, anywhere, whenever?

Or are there a few boundaries and caveats?

Case in point…

Redditor Salt_Path5157 wanted to discuss her experience and get some feedback. So naturally, she came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

She asked:

“AITA for not allowing my daughter go to her sister’s wedding because of her emo outfit?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“I have two daughters Ashley (26 F[emale]) and Alex (15 F).”

“I’m gonna start by saying they don’t get along that well, and it is due to the age difference.”

“Recently though they have been getting closer since Ashley let Alex help plan the wedding, it was really nice of her to include her in this.”

“Well the wedding was yesterday, and it was supposed to be formal attire, so before this, we both got long dresses.”

“Alex was supposed to wear the dress she got which was sage green.”

“Alex normally wears emo clothes at the moment, which is fine.”

“Well, she came down in the green dress and put a large slit in it that does up to her thigh.”

“She also added a skull necklace, earnings, punk rock boots, and really dark makeup.”

“I told her to take that jewelry off quickly and give me the dress so I could fit the slit or at least make it shorter.”

“Alex got mad and said it was fine and was in the dress code.”

“I told her no and that you will stand out.”

“She refused again, and I told her if she won’t fix it then she can stay home.”

“She refused again, and she missed the wedding.”

“Ashley understood why her sister wasn’t there, but my husband was furious with me and called me a jerk.”

“Alex is still not talking to me also.”

“So AITA?”

Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:

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

Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.

“NTA, it was attention seeking (even if that is her style) a wedding/formal event is not a time and place to express yourself.”

“You were looking out for the bride/your daughter.”  ~ Melon_Science

“I was beginning to doubt my own feelings until I read this.”

‘Alex can suck it up for one day.”

“She has 364 days to dress to her preferences.”

“OP is NTA.”  ~ FlagCityDiva

“Same here… even today, if I went to a relative’s wedding and dressed that way, I can’t imagine my mom being OK with it, and I’m a grown woman!”

“I dunno. I get ‘self-expression,’ but it’s one thing to choose what you wear to work and another when you’re going to a family wedding.”

“Growing up does mean learning to express yourself, but it also means learning when to put others first and consider others’ needs before your own.”  ~ Spotzie27

“Hello, fellow elder emos.”

“There are tons of ways of accessorizing a normal sage formal dress without it being too over the top for someone else’s wedding.”

“What she wanted to do was too much.”

“Someone’s big day, a funeral, and a few other big events that are about someone who isn’t you aren’t the places to do that.”

“If she gets married, she can go hog wild as the bride.”

“But a guest? Nah.” ~ ironically-spiders

“Being included means participating appropriately.”

“I don’t like the whole ‘center of attention’ dynamic, but it’s a thing.”

“The 15-year-old was shifting the attention to herself.”

“I would debate the not an idiot part of your comment.”

“Edgy teenagers quite often act a fool and either they learn from the consequences of their actions or become entitled adults.”

“OP did exactly right by BOTH of her daughters and even offered a reasonable out if she were to rethink her actions, she didn’t.”

“Clear case of f**k around and find out. NTA.”  ~ gratefullevi

“I was absolutely ready to side against OP until I got to the exit saying the slit was high enough to see underwear.”

“There’s a huge difference between self-expression and attention seeking.”

“She could have pulled off a goth look while still being appropriate for the event.”

“A shorter slit, toned down but still goth makeup, and a couple of smaller jewelry pieces, black fingernails.”

‘But this is not what she did.”

“She decided to push boundaries.”

“Maybe she didn’t want to go, but this was a way to get out of going and blame mom.”

“Who knows? But OP was NTA.”  ~ Particular-Studio-32

“I was very into goth stuff in High School (and still am, to be honest) but my parents wouldn’t let me go full goth.”

“I learned to add small details: smaller, daintier jewelry (velvet chokers are a cheap and classic choice), dark lipstick with an otherwise neutral makeup look, etc.”

“There’s a huge chasm between ‘not emo/goth at all’ and ‘extra in a Paramore video.'”

“NTA, OP.”  ~ throwawayoctopii

“She and everyone who attends a formal event ARE still able to express themselves/ourselves.”

“Outside of uniforms, every dress code allows for freedom of choice within the dress code.”

“I can’t wear jeans to the office, but I can pick the colors and patterns of my business casual pants and shirts.”

“It’s absurd for people (re: teenagers and young adults) to say events that require formal attire violate their right to self-expression.”

“Whether this was clueless teenage rebellion for the sake of rebellion based on ignorance of how rude it is to violate wedding dress codes or a malicious act of revenge against a sister for unrelated wrongs is irrelevant.”

“The couple deserved an event where all guests complied with the formal attire they chose for their event.”

“Guests don’t make the rules, hosts do — if you don’t like them, you don’t attend. NTA.”  ~ JuliaX1984

OP came back with some updates…

“Comments people said were relevant…”

“I got there really early before the wedding and brought the issue up in person.”

“Ashley was still getting ready, that’s when we had the conversation.”

“She agreed it would be best.”

“I also texted my daughter that if she changes the outfit, I could pick her up in time for the wedding, but no response.”

“I am fine with her expressing herself, she picked out the dress and she told me what she was gonna do for her makeup.”

“Then the day of the wedding she did all of this.”

“The slit was so high I could see her underwear as she walked fast, not to mention the jewelry was huge.”

“I just don’t get why she would do that, it was inappropriate to dress like that for the event, there is a time and place.”

“Not to mention my Ashley was fine with Alex missing the wedding, she didn’t want her there looking like that either.”

Reddit continued…

“The ‘My Ashley’ thing really stopped me in my tracks too.”

“And after rereading it, the whole thing has a mommy takeover vibe to it.”

“I am glad I’m not the only one who sensed this.”

“Yes children need to learn when to dress appropriately, but this whole thing has a weird; Mom’s way or the highway feel to it.”

“I’m going to have an unpopular vote on this.”

“But I think OP is TA.”

“And Alex is being a teen.”

“And actually sounded like Alex had it worked out with her sister until OP stuck her nose into it.”

“Instead of letting Ashley decide whether or not it was actually inappropriate for her wedding, OP did.”

“Just based on that… OP, YTA.”  ~ ZombyAnna

“Yes, all of this.”

“The ‘my Ashley’ really got me too.”

“I would also like to mention, my sister is 14, and I am 28 – we get on great.”

“Which makes me question, if the mum is saying ‘my Ashley’ does she have an awkward emo teen who feels like she’s not as loved as her big sister?”

“That could play a HUGE part in the sisters’ relationship with each other too.”

“This is irrelevant to the judgment, to be honest, but I agree there’s too much conflicting/vague info to make a decent decision.”  ~ McF**kin94

“NTA. I had a major emo/punk phase as a teen and still like the style as an adult and incorporate it into my style sometimes.”

“But you can definitely dress up nicely and subtly incorporate emo things into it.” ~ thaliagorgon

“NTA. If the bride didn’t want her there looking like that either why is everyone saying it’s your fault?”

“Yeah, maybe you could’ve compromised on smaller jewelry or something.”

“But I don’t think not letting your fifteen-year-old show a whole wedding her underwear because her dress is slit up so high makes you the bad guy.” ~ Odd_Business5830

“The slit up to the underwear is the absolute no-go issue for me.”

“Punk boots are not only fine I find it an adorable way to preserve your identity without ruining pictures.”

“Dark make-up is pushing it.”

“Giant skull necklace well at least it can be removed quickly.”

“Cutting your new formal dress so high you can see underwear between raw fraying fabric edges.”

“Mom saved her older daughter’s wedding and her younger daughter from what would hopefully become a lifelong embarrassment.” ~ Used-Situation

Well OP, Reddit seems with you.

You wanted to help everybody.

Maybe it could’ve been handled better, but there wasn’t exactly time with the impending nuptials.

Hopefully, you and Alex can get back to a good place.