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Guy Balks After Fiancée Forbids Him From Having His Sister As ‘Groomsman’ Because It’s Not ‘Traditional’

Afif Kusuma/Unsplash

Planning a wedding is difficult enough as it is, let alone when members of you and your future spouse’s family don’t get along.

A guy on Reddit found himself in this position with his wife-to-be and his sister, who have a combative relationship.

And when he asked to include his sister as one of his groomsman so that she could be in the wedding, things turned very dramatic very fast.

He wasn’t sure about how he handled it, so he went to the AITA (Am I The A**hole) subReddit for perspective.

The Original Poster (OP), who goes by the username Few-Zebra2391 on the site, asked:

“AITA for asking my sister to be a groomswoman?”

He explained:

“sorry if the formatting sucks, i am on mobile while typing this.”

“so, my (25m[ale]) fiancée(24f[emale]) has never gotten along with my sister (18f). my fiancée has never liked how close i am with my sister, and it has been a cause of few arguments.”

“i proposed to fiancée (“sarah”) a few months ago, and things have been going smoothly. in fact, i would say our relationship has never been better.”

“a few days ago, sarah listed off to me all of the people she wanted as bridesmaids, and not surprisingly, my sister was not one of them. she said she was planning on asking them in a few more months to be in our wedding.”

“sarah then asked me if i knew who i wanted as groomsmen. i listed off a couple friends that sarah knew, ‘keegan, joe, sammy, etc.’ and then, i said i wanted my sister to be one of my groomsmen.”

“this made sarah upset. she said that it wasn’t traditional for a woman to be a groomsman, and that it would embarrass her. i explained to her that my sister was one of the most important people in my life, and she was going to be apart of our wedding.”

“this made sarah even more upset, and she accused me of trying to ruin her wedding day, and she locked herself in the bathroom.”

“it’s been a few days since this, and we haven’t spoken at all. many of her family members have reached out to me and asked me to not include my sister in the wedding at all, and that sarah should be the most important woman in my life, not my sister.”

“my mil even called me, telling me that i was making sarah depressed, and that i was a horrible person for doing this to my future wife.”

“my sister heard about all of this, and told me that it was okay to not invite her.”

“i stood my ground and told all of them that my sister would be included, no matter what.”

“aita for doing so?”

People on Reddit were then asked to judge who was in the wrong in this situation based on the following categories:

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

And for the most part, they agreed that OP’s fiancé was way out of line.

“why would you want to marry someone who is not only jealous of your little sister, but also seemingly implying that your relationship with her is inappropriate?”

“Edit to add real verdict: absolutely NTA. You sound like a great big brother, I’m sorry you’re going through this.” –YummayBread69

“I have a brother in law who married a woman like this. She’s slowly managed to encourage the destruction of the relationship with all of his siblings, especially the little sister.” –diamondtoothdennis

“Absolutely do not exclude your sister! Jealousy is a strong emotion that will lead to misery. Your fiancé is wrong about sis. Please take your time when someone literally wants to leave out your family” –bgalvan02

“Yeah, NTA. Fiancée’s implications here are kinda disturbing. How’s she going to react if they have kids? Will he be allowed to cuddle with them?” –UltradonLives

“Just to piggy back on a top comment, I’ve been to multiple weddings that have had opposite sex siblings or friends stand with the bride or groom.” –News_you_can_use2789

“NTA. No, it’s not traditional for a sister to be a ‘groomswoman’ just like it’s not traditional for a brother to be a ‘bridesman’. But both are happening these days and it shouldn’t be embarrassing at all.”

“And if Sarah had merely been startled by this, then I would have said N. A. H.”

“But for her to be having these ongoing, irrational emotional reactions to the fact that your sister is important enough to you that you want her at your side as you marry your fiancée… That’s a very different story.”

“If she truly thinks that she should be the most important person in your life to the point that you exclude other people from standing by your side, that is an extraordinarily insecure and controlling person.”

“I would be deeply concerned about spending your life with someone who thinks your sister should not be important to you.”

“And I would also take note of who respects you and wants you to be happy: your sister has already agreed to bow out, to placate someone who doesn’t even like her. She’s doing that because she loves you.”

“Your fiancée showing that she doesn’t respect your wishes and puts her desire to be center of attention above your desire to be supported. And your future MIL is supporting Sarah’s temper tantrum (rather than Sarah) and is trying to help manipulate you into acquiescing.”

“I would strongly recommend couples counseling before moving forward with the wedding process…” –DinaFelice

“I’ve been married for 25 years, I had a ‘couple of honor’ and my husband had ‘best people’.”

“I shamelessly stole the idea: my couple of honor each had their siblings (2 same gender, one opposite) stand up on their own sides and my husband was a bridesman for his best woman.”

“It’s not new, it’s not embarrassing, and you can still do the ‘all the ladies’ and ‘all the guys’ photos if you really need to.” –Substantial-Suit4686

After reading his fellow Redditors’ comments, OP came back to add some updates on his situation.

“edit: sarah’s dislike stems from her walking in on my sister and i cuddling. sister had her head on my shoulder, and my arm was wrapped around her, which made sarah upset.”

“2nd edit: my sister is a romantic, and told me when she first came out that she would most likely never get married, and that made her sad.”

“i told her she could be apart of my wedding, even if it wasn’t the same thing. i will never forget the look of joy on my sisters face. this is why i wont back down, for those wondering.”

And after some careful consideration, decided to make some major changes to his life and relationship.

“3rd edit: i am planning on calling off the engagement with sarah when i get home from work! my sister is more important to me than any miserable marriage. i will be home around 8 est, so lookout for an update around then”

“4th and final edit: hello reddit! this is gonna be a little long, so be patient with me.”

“i got home from work, and i told sarah we need to talk. she agreed, and we sat down in the living room.”

“i started off by asking her why she had such a problem with sister being a groomsman, and also (as many of you suggested) if she had been sad or had any trauma related to that. sarah told me that she hadn’t.”

“she went on to say that having sister as a groomsman was untraditional. she said, ‘men are groomsmen. woman are bridesmaids.’ sarah also said she was uncomfortable with how close i was with sister.”

“i asked her to elaborate on this, and sarah implied that we had more than a sibling relationship. she said cuddling between siblings was something she had never seen, and that it just didn’t seem like something normal siblings did.”

“i assured sarah that nothing like that was happening, but she just didn’t seem like she wanted to accept that, and it just let to more arguing.”

“i gave sarah an ultimatum. we could go to couples therapy, she could try to repair her relationship with sister, and tell her family to stop guilting me, or we were going to have to call of the engagement.”

“sarah blew up at me, and said she was going to stay with her mother.”

“family in law is now completely pissed at me, and are sending me hateful messages on facebook lol, so i guess that’s most likely the end of sarah and i.”

“but to wrap things up on a good note: sister is planning on moving in with me 🙂 her mental health was drained from this, so we decided to move in together.”

“thank you everyone for sticking through this with me, i appreciate all the kind messages. i ended up showing sister some of them and she was very delighted.”

Hopefully OP can quickly move forward after this.

Written by John Sundholm

John Sundholm is a writer, content producer and performer originally from Michigan. His writing has also appeared on YourTango, Delish and Medium, and he has produced content for NBC, The New York Times and The CW, among others. When not working, he can be found tripping over his own feet on a hiking trail while singing Madonna songs to ward off lurking bears.