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Guy Accused Of ‘Ruining The Vibe’ After Refusing To Catch The Garter At His Sister’s Wedding

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We can all hope that when we invite someone to a gathering or a party, they will have a good time.

But parties are not for everyone, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor kingifshortkings felt awkward at his sister’s wedding, not knowing what to expect and not particularly wanting to participate in party games.

But when his sister was furious with him for how he behaved, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was wrong to show his awkwardness.

He asked the sub:

“AITA for dodging the garter at my sister’s wedding?”

The OP attended his first wedding.

“Friday was my (21 Male) older sister’s (27 Female) wedding. It was a nice wedding and I enjoyed the ceremony.”

“However, the reception I just found unpleasant. I have really bad social anxiety and it was like a big party and I just felt out of place, suffocated, and embarrassed.”

“After my sister did her bouquet toss, they did a game, and we started prepping for the garter toss.”

“I had never been to a wedding before, and really all I know about weddings are from TV and movies, which is why I knew about the bouquet toss but not this.”

The OP was weirded out at the reception.

“So they did this weird ceremony thing where my brother-in-law took off my sister’s garter.”

“He was blindfolded and had his hands tied behind his back so he did it with his teeth. Honestly, this was really gross to watch. Like it was weirdly sexual and it’s my sister.”

“So after that, they called up all the unmarried men for the garter toss.”

“I did NOT want to do this. It’s a kinda ‘sexy’ article of clothing that’s been tied to my sister’s sweaty thigh for an hour and a half.”

The OP was required to participate.

“However, as the men were going up and I tried to stay behind with my parents, my sister Kanye’d the mic from the DJ and called me out by name and said all unmarried men.”

“So I shambled over and was in the crowd like 15 men deep. I figured, there are like 6 guys here that are well above 6’ tall, and I’m barely average height, they’ll get it before I do.”

“So my brother-in-law throws it and it’s like the garter is attracted to me. It’s falling right towards me and I jump out of the way and it hits the ground.”

“Another guy dives for it and we move on.”

His sister called him out on his behavior.

“Now today, my sister is mad at me. She told me that it was a d**k move and I was being extremely dramatic to dive out the way of the garter.”

“She accused me of trying to kill the vibe at her wedding by not having fun and was really upset with me over this.”

“AITA?”

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 felt the OP’s feelings of apprehension and discomfort were valid.

“Totally NTA. You described it perfectly. Sexy item tied to your sister’s sweaty thigh. Don’t blame you one bit for dodging it.” – Waddymom

“I agree with NTA as he shouldn’t be ‘shamed’ to have participated. But for some clarification on the tradition in most cases both the bouquet and garter that are used in these games are not the actual bouquet and garter that the bride used for the day.”

“For the bouquet, most brides like to preserve their flowers so they buy a second cheap bouquet specifically for the toss. Same for the garter. Most women (if they even wear a garter during the ceremony) either buy a second cheap one to be tossed or only buy one and put it on right before the game.”

“Just wanted to provide some insight that it probably wasn’t sitting on his sister’s sweaty thigh all day.” – frostyfeet1050

“The whole garter thing is uncomfortable. I’ve been to a lot of weddings and can only remember one garter removal/toss, especially at more recent ones.” – Binky390

“I wasn’t expecting this at my wedding. My mother at the last possible moment forced it on me. The DJ was playing music, and my (ex) husband crawled on his hands and legs and took it off with his teeth.”

“I’m covering my face crying. It was so humiliating.”

“My husband threw it into the crowd that was laughing at my discomfort and that thing hit the grass, with men scrambling to get away from it. It made me feel like an obscene sex toy, discarded in a gutter.” – BunnyKerfluffle

“NTA.”

“It’s a very sexist tradition (while pretending to be equal to the bouquet toss). Not everyone wants to participate in it, either because of the gross sexual connotations you observed, or even just bc they don’t want to get married.”

“She should have respected your wish to not be part of this, she’s the one who killed the vibe by forcing you to do something you didn’t want to at what should have been a celebration.” – AceyAceyAcey

“NTA. I avoided catching the bouquet at one sister’s wedding. Your sister is the AH for yelling at you about this.”

“The absolute worst a**holes I’ve seen about things like this was at my older sister’s wedding. She married a cartoonishly sexist and misogynistic man.”

“When he went to take the garter off my sister’s leg, he shouted out to the crowd, ‘Hey, everybody! What do you think about my breeding stock?'”

“Yes, he called my sister his ‘breeding stock,’ and she just giggled and laughed like it was the most hilarious thing ever.” – NotMyRealName814

Others pointed out that the tradition, and the follow-up, were all gross.

“To add to the ick factor, the guy who catches the garter as to put it on the thigh of the woman who catches the bouquet.” – lorinabaninabanana

“The only time I’ve caught the bouquet at a wedding, the guy who caught the garter had to put it on my leg with everyone cheering that the higher up he went, the more luck for the wedding couple.”

“It was soooooo uncomfortable, the guy’s girlfriend was staring daggers at me the whole time and I reasonably don’t like strangers sticking their hands up my dress!” – flyntsy

“I hate this tradition. I had a bad experience at a wedding catching the bouquet and this old guy was supposed to put the garter on my leg. F**king awful.”

“Since, I’ve always tried to sit off to the side and not go in for the toss. Unfortunately, there’s often pressure to go try to catch it. I really hate it, I think it’s tacky. I don’t want to be in the spotlight if I catch it either.”

“Sorry if that offends anyone, but I really wish that tradition would die. Thankfully I’m married now, no more of this nonsense.”

“I’ve heard of people throwing out a stuffed dog toy and the one who catches it is going to be the next one to get a pet. That’s cute, but why is any of this necessary?” – Odd_Requirement_4933

“NTA and this is a really gross tradition. I’m glad it’s not as common as the bouquet toss.”

“As you say, it’s a very sexualized article of clothing that’s been tied to someone’s sweaty thigh for an hour and a half, the groom removes it and throws it to his bros? Gross. When the bride is your SISTER? Eeew.”

“And holy s**t, I just noticed the part where your BIL was blindfolded and did this with his TEETH? I need to go bleach my brain now.” – DiVitreousHumor

“We had a family member specifically call out at her wedding, ‘No, living together doesn’t count, you have to be MARRIED to get out of the bouquet toss!’ Just a gigantic f**k you to my partner and I who have been together for over a decade.”

“But we’re not married (and don’t care to be for a number of personal reasons) so I suppose it doesn’t matter. Disgusting and inconsiderate. Needless to say, I still did not get up.” – running_fool_

“Personally NTA, I don’t understand bouquet tosses, flowers are expensive and ultimately I think the garter toss, being something I haven’t seen at a wedding for 20+ years, is tacky as s**t!”

“You didn’t want to stand there, you tried to stay back, it was your sister that caused a scene and ruined the ‘vibe’ of her wedding by forcing you to participate.” – Character-Review6307

The subReddit was unanimously just as disturbed by these wedding traditions as the OP was, and they did not blame him at all for not wanting to participate in them, especially since they involved a family member as important as his sister.

Also, there was no reason for the sister to suggest that the OP’s lack of involvement in party games would ruin her wedding day or be a form of sabotage. While she might have enjoyed these games, the OP did not, and the best thing to do would have been to respect each other’s wishes.

Written by McKenzie Lynn Tozan

McKenzie Lynn Tozan lives in North Chicago, where she works as a poet, freelance writer, and editor. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, and her BA in English from Indiana University South Bend. Her poems have appeared in Rogue Agent, Whale Road Review, the James Franco Review, Thank You for Swallowing, and elsewhere; and her essays and book reviews have appeared with Memoir Mixtapes, The Rumpus, BookPage, and Motherly, among others. When she's not reading and writing, she's in her garden or spending time with her family. For more, visit www.mckenzielynntozan.com.