Your wedding day is a time to celebrate. That celebration looks different to everyone, but we can agree the opinion of the happy couple is most important, right?
As Redditor smknmrrs00 is finding out, that becomes more difficult when the happy couple can’t agree. The original poster (OP) and her husband are debating whether they’ll have alcohol at their wedding.
The debate involves OP’s future sister-in-law and a lot of resentment. But OP can’t tell if she’s on the wrong side of the argument.
She decided to ask the “Am I the A**hole” (AITA) subReddit about her situation.
“AITA for refusing to have a ‘dry wedding’?”
But what led to the possibility of a dry wedding?
“For some backstory: my fiancé’s sister is an alcoholic, she’s struggled with alcohol abuse for the six years my fiancé and I have been together. She, like most addicts is a terribly manipulative person who refuses to get help.”
“She’s finally hit rock bottom I guess and is getting help for her alcoholism which I’m very happy about, by the time our wedding rolls around she’ll be 6 months sober.”
“But because of this, my fiancé doesn’t want any alcohol at the wedding. He thinks it would be too much temptation too soon.”
“I think that’s bullsh**, he and his family have always enabled her to keep her happy and I feel like this is another attempt at that. After they’ve spent upwards of 500,000 dollars on bailing her out of prison and new cars, I’m putting my foot down.”
“This is my day and I feel like I should be allowed to drink a glass of f***ing champagne at my own wedding. My fiancé on the other hand thinks that if she’s going to be there, we should be accommodating to her.”
“Because of this, our wedding planning has come to a halt and I feel like he’s choosing her over me. So am I the a**hole for refusing to have a dry wedding to appease my fiancés alcoholic sister?”
OP came back and provided a little more context for what is happening.
“ETA: I realized I wasn’t as clear as possible, she’s completely fine with not going to the wedding due to the temptation being too much for her to handle. My fiancé on the other hand really wants her there and is pushing for this, which I think is unfair to me.”
On Reddit, the users of the board judged OP’s refusal to have a dry wedding by including one of the following in their response:
- NTA – Not the A**hole
- YTA – You’re the A**hole
- NAH – No A**holes Here
- ESH – Everybody Sucks Here
OP’s situation is a difficult one for the board to pin down. While the husband’s request make sense, it’s also reasonable for OP to want to have her wedding her way.
The board voted that there were NAH.
“NAH. Feels like there’s room for compromise here.”
“For instance, maybe no alcohol before the reception, so his sister can attend the ceremony; you could even have the ceremony and reception at different locations so she’s not tempted to stay.”
“Or have a single bottle of champagne just for you and the groom. Or do a dry rehearsal dinner so she’s not totally excluded from the whole wedding.”
“If neither of you will compromise, ESH.” – Temporary_Badger
“NTA Usually they tell alcoholics to skip events if it would be too tempting when first in recovery. She could go to your wedding and skip the reception.”
“The day isn’t about her it’s about the two of you so should have the wedding you want. (If this was a family holiday or dinner I’d say skip the alcohol but your wedding is a bigger deal).” – blueberryxxoo
“Look at the edit. She’s fine not going, it’s the brother (the groom) that wants her there as part of his day.”
“Which makes it more complicated because it’s as much his wedding as it is hers.” – BooksAreLuv
“With your edit, the conflict is between the two primary people: you and your fiance. That’s not easy because it’s your (plural) wedding and you should get what you (plural) want: you want to have alcohol, which excludes his sister, and he wants to have his sister, which excludes alcohol.”
“This isn’t an AH situation. You guys need to talk this through. At the most flippant, you’re saying that your ‘glass of f***ing champagne’ is more important than his having a very close family member with him.”
“I know it’s way more complicated than that, there’s obviously a huge history and you are being asked to make a significant adjustment to your reception. You ‘feel like he’s choosing her over’ you, which is clearly an exaggeration – he’s choosing her presence over your preference for alcohol.”
“Is there no compromise?”
“-She comes to the wedding and not the reception”
“-There is champagne only for the toasts but other than that, no alcohol”
“-The reception is dry until some clear point where she can go and the alcohol can come out (kind of like how in some weddings kids stay until xyz time then they leave and the more adult party starts)”
“-Undoubtedly more options…”
“At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself if having alcohol at your wedding is more important than his having his sister. And if you ‘win’, at what cost to your relationship?”
“He’s got to do the same internal questioning. Because this has the potential to cause long term resentment through feeling like the other person just isn’t understanding them.”
“NAH, yet.” – NoiseProvesNothing
“This is the opposite of enabling her. This is actually an attempt to support her sobriety because she is incredibly vulnerable.”
“No one is more guilt ridden and ashamed than a recovering addict. It’s a minute to minute battle and it’s damn hard.”
“It’s not your responsibility to not have alcohol there, but honestly, if you could just split a bottle of champagne with your fiancé and keep the rest of the wedding dry, would that be so terrible?”
“I get where you’re coming from, and I don’t blame you. I just wish people could see it from the addict’s perspective without actually having to be one.”
“It sucks all the way around, I’m sorry.” – PinkGhostPandemic
Other commenters had deeper comments and discussions on dealing with alcoholics.
“NTA. I’m a former drunk, 16 months sober. That is my problem to deal with, no one else’s.”
“I don’t go to family parties and demand it alcohol free. I was a groomsman at a wedding, at my 9 month sober mark and there was tons of booze. I chose not to drink.”
“That is my responsibility and mine alone. If someone asked me if I’d like a beer, I simply told them I quit drinking and I’ll stick with soda and water.”
“During the toasts and speeches, I toasted with a can of Diet Coke instead of champaign. The groom was aware of my alcohol dependency and had no problems with me doing that.”
“Addiction is a disease. But we also have a choice. The choice can be extremely difficult at times, but at the end of the day, if I start drinking again, I have to choose to drink that beer or shot.”
“I have been through a lot of counseling with this and am comfortable around alcohol and know I can control myself. If I wasn’t comfortable around it, then I would have to choose to not go to the wedding if it would be that much of a problem.”
“Your future SIL is going to have to step up and make those hard choices. The world won’t revolve around her sobriety.”
“She has two options. Get counseling and gain the wisdom and strength to avoid alcohol when it’s around, or excuse herself from events with alcohol.” – thelistman1
“It’s not just your day, it’s his day as well and it’s clearly important to him that she is able to attend if it’s stopped your planning.”
“Ask yourself is it worth giving up your wedding over being able to have a glass of wine?” – BooksAreLuv
“ESH – I think there needs to be some compromise. It’s not just your day, it’s his too. But you also can’t change the entire wedding to accommodate one person’s potentially bad decisions.”
“What if she attended the ceremony and then leave before the reception? She can be included in the family pictures as well.”
“That way she’s there during one of the most important moments of his life, something he really wants to share with her. But then isn’t tempted into breaking her sobriety.” – BasisNo1493
After all the talk and discussion, OP decided she had to postpone the wedding.
There are deeper issues at play.
“EDIT2: Thank you everyone for your advice, but I think we’re going to postpone this wedding until I can sort out my feelings towards his sister.”
“I have nothing but love for my fiancé and his sister but after doing some thinking last night I realized I thought through marriage he would completely cut her off and ‘be mine’ which isn’t realistic.”
“I want nothing more than to marry this man and see his sister get sober, but right now it’s toxic for all of us. I’m going to have to figure out a way to tell my fiancé this.”
OP found her own solution, and thought through why it would cause her so much pain to not have alcohol at her wedding.
Now she just needs to explain to her fiancé without hurting his feelings.