As much as we may love our closest friends, there’s a distinct possibility that we will not love their significant others.
In some cases, the strain can be so terrible, it can ruin the original friendship, or at least lead to spending far less time together, agreed the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor throwawaylefty56 tried to be understanding when his best friend wanted him to attend his wedding but decided to respect his wife’s wish to not invite him.
When it came time for his own wedding, the Original Poster (OP) decided he would handle the situation a little differently: to invite his best friend but not his wife.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for not giving my married friend a plus-one invitation to my wedding?”
The OP did not want his best friend’s wife to attend his wedding.
“I (33 Male) am getting married next summer.”
“I invited a friend from university to my wedding but intentionally did not give him a plus-one invitation for his wife.”
“His wife and I do not get along. She attended university with us, and we had our fair share of fights then and a rather large fuss some five-odd years ago.”
Previous events put a serious strain on their relationship.
“She cheated on my friend at university, and they broke up. I was not as warm to her after that but not outwardly mean.”
“She wanted him back, he asked for advice, and I said don’t do it. He took her back anyways (obviously, his right to do so), but I remained more distant from her.”
“Not sure if my friend told her that I advised they remain broken up (would not be surprised) or if it was just me not being as friendly, but she turned nasty on me.”
“Five years ago, I called her out for her b***hy behavior after she hurt me with multiple rude comments. Alcohol was involved, and admittedly, I could have handled the situation with more finesse.”
“Our interaction ruined a wonderful evening. Once we sobered up the following day, I apologized for my part and expected the same in return. Instead, she not only refused to apologize or accept any blame, but she also entirely rejected my apology.”
The OP rarely saw his friend’s wife, including at his best friend’s wedding.
“We live on opposite sides of our country and only see each other a couple of times a year (if that) for special occasions like other friends’ weddings. His wife and I can be generally cordial now but mostly avoid or ignore one another.”
“They got married around four years ago, and I was not invited to their wedding.”
“My friend told me (in no uncertain terms) that he wanted me there, but his wife did not, and that he chose to respect her wishes on her big day.”
“I was disappointed but understanding and never let it affect our friendship.”
The OP decided not to invite his best friend’s wife in return.
“I am having a big wedding and all guests with spouses, fiancés, and serious boyfriends or girlfriends are getting plus-one invitations, except for my friend.”
“It is not a numbers issue, I simply do not want his wife in attendance.”
“I have considered the likelihood that my friend will RSVP no given the lack of a plus-one, but I am okay with this outcome.”
“I have no intention of telling him ahead of time that most others are getting a plus one, but I’m aware that he is most likely going to find out.”
The OP’s other loved ones were torn over how he was handling the situation.
“My fiancé and I obviously discussed this matter, and she is fully supportive of this decision.”
“Other friends that I have spoken to tell me that I’m being ruthless and basically should not have even invited my friend if I wasn’t going to give him a plus one for his wife.”
“So… am I the a**hole?”
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 reassured the OP that it was his wedding, and he could invite who he wished.
“NTA. The only thing OP maybe could have done better is to be even more transparent with his friend, something like:”
“‘Look, you know the situation. I don’t know how you feel, but I would love for you to come to my wedding. But since it’s my wedding and I want people there that I’m comfortable with, that unfortunately means I’m not comfortable extending you a plus-one invitation. It’s not an act of revenge and I don’t want to be disrespectful. I just want my friend there and for everyone to have a good time. I’ll be happy if you come, but I’ll also understand if you decide not to.'”
“But maybe I’m biased because I’m usually surrounded by pretty mature people who can take this level of honesty.” – West-Leopard-3094
“NTA. You have direct evidence that she feels the same as you do, and it prevented you from going to a good friend’s wedding. It’s not like you’re shocking her with the fact that your feelings aren’t reciprocated. I would communicate with your friend, though, that she is not invited and that only his name on the invite wasn’t a mistake.” – DragoBrokeMe
“NTA… If she didn’t want you at her wedding, then it’s reasonable to not want her at yours… I don’t think your friend will be hurt or surprised that his wife isn’t invited…” – Queen_Queen420
“I was prepared to say OP is the AH (because normally you should always include spouses and serious significant others as plus-ones, even if you don’t like them) UNTIL I got halfway down and saw he was not invited to the friend’s wedding at the wife’s request.”
“Honestly, she is not gonna want to OP’s wedding anyway. This is justified under the circumstances.”
“NTA, OP.” – firefliesfly80
“OP is NTA with his current plan, but inviting her as well is a good olive branch, especially if you want your friend there.”
“It’s your wedding, so like there’s more than just this couple there. You give them a ‘hey, thanks for coming’ comment and hang out with your buddy, and his wife can sit off to the side and get to know Uncle Jerry or something.”
“But yeah, I think solely inviting his friend has the possibility to ice out the friendship. The friend already put one nail in the coffin by not even inviting OP to his wedding, but they’ve moved past that.”
“Up to you really, OP, you’ve got a good plan either way.” – Thatsaclevername
“NTA. I get it, but just understand that your friendship may not be the same.”
“Also, consider that inviting her allows you to keep the moral high ground. If the friendship survives, she’ll now be able to throw the ‘but he didn’t invite me, either!’ card.”
“If you don’t care about that or that the friendship possibly being damaged, then go for it.” – No-Investigator-6528
Others thought the OP was the AH for sending an invite without a discussion first.
“Mild YTA. You are under no obligation to invite her, and as you’ve said you’re expecting him to say no and you’re ok with that, so you’re not acting entitled.”
“However… You said, ‘I have no intention of telling him ahead of time that most others are getting a plus-one invitation, but I’m aware that he is most likely going to find out.'”
“This is where I think you’re in the wrong. Giving him a heads-up rather than him finding out either on the day or from somebody else makes it seem deceptive. I think a quick heads-up to explain the situation would be best.”
“Also, do you really want him to find out on the day itself and potentially cause a scene? Or for him to look/act annoyed the whole day and ruin the vibe? Surely it’s best to give him the full information up front and he can make an informed decision.” – UncleSnowstorm
“I’m going to say YTA, mainly because you invited him.”
“In this situation, I would have left them both off. I don’t care what the reasons are, but if you invite someone who’s married to a wedding, you invite their spouse. Period.”
“You just should have never extended the invite to either of them. Especially after you weren’t invited to their wedding. It wasn’t just her who didn’t invite you. It was his wedding too, and he went along with it.”
“Not sure what your intent was to invite just him. Just create more issues?” – djjsin
“NTA for not wanting someone you dislike at your wedding. Your big day, your big choice.”
“YTA for sending an invite to a married couple without the plus-one invitation.”
“As your friends stated, it would have been better to not invite him at all. Your invite can cause your friend headaches about how to handle you and your request (he will know for sure your friends have a plus-one) and troubles in his marriage.”
“You can dislike someone but you don’t have to cause trouble in their marriage. It’s petty.”
“Did you already send the invites? Sounds weird to mail invites a year in advance. Wedding invites are usually sent a few months before the wedding.”
“If the official invite was not mailed yet, don’t mail it. They made the right call by not inviting you to their wedding as you and his spouse don’t like each other. Return the favor.” – PunkYak
“You are right and I understand the thinking, but still unfortunately YTA. I wouldn’t want her there either, but by not inviting her, you are not recognizing your friend’s wife and someone who is important to him.”
“I had a somewhat similar situation where my friend’s wife did not like my wife (they had a history before we all got together but were cordial with each other and just didn’t interact).”
“I was invited with no plus-one invitation. I really wanted to go for my friend, but because my wife was not acknowledged, I declined. After that, it did affect my relationship with him since he wouldn’t stick up for me as his friend.” – sc61723529129
“YTA (softly because I understand why you are doing what you are doing).”
“This is an impossible situation you are in. You were hurt by your friend’s wife and do not want her at the wedding, but they are married, which means if you invite him, you invite her.”
“Probably the best course in an impossible situation is to not invite your friend. If/when he asks, just tell him you know how his wife feels about you, and you did not think she would want to attend… Not perfect, but better than not giving your friend a plus-one invitation and making it so clear that this is a vendetta issue that would force your friend to choose his wife and perhaps end things with you.” – TracklessTinder
The subReddit could completely understand why the OP didn’t like his best friend’s wife, and even why he didn’t want her to attend his wedding, especially after she specifically didn’t invite him to hers. That said, they were much more divided over the OP’s wedding invitation plan.
Not inviting the wife would certainly make a statement, but in the best case scenario, his friend wouldn’t attend his wedding, and in the worst case scenario, it might ruin their friendship for good, all in the opening of one piece of mail.