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Bride Furious After Mom Insists On Bringing Up Her Estranged Step-Siblings In Wedding Toast

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Weddings have a funny way of bringing out the worst in people.

The worst for some people is a lack of judgment, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.

Redditor ShyBabyDolphin found herself stuck in the middle of a family feud when her mom wanted to talk about her siblings’ estrangement, during a wedding toast of all times.

When they couldn’t see eye-to-eye on the situation, the Original Poster (OP) struggled to find a reasonable solution.

She asked the sub:

“AITA for drawing a line on what I will and won’t allow at my wedding?”

The OP was surprised while wedding planning.

“I’m getting married in a month and life has changed a bit since people got invited.”

“My older half-sisters and half-brother reached out to our mom and started to reconcile with her after an estrangement that lasted more than a decade.”

“My mom now wants me to invite them, which I said no to, and then she talked about including them in her toast, which I shut down.”

The OP didn’t have a positive upbringing with her half-siblings.

“My half-siblings were 11 [female], 10 [male], and 8 [female] when I was born.”

“Their dad passed away 3 years before I was born. My mom and dad were married 9ish months when I came along.”

“They hated me, wished I had never been born, or wished me dead on a number of occasions.”

“They hated mom for remarrying and hated my dad for stealing their family.”

“They rejected having anything to do with me over and over again, and said some things that can never be taken back until one by one they moved out and cut everyone off.”

The OP didn’t totally believe in the reunification.

“I don’t know whether this reconciliation is genuine or not.”

“They only appear to be speaking to mom, not my dad at all. She has met her grandkids but dad was not welcome.”

“And from what I can gather, I have not been someone they want to discuss.”

“My dad also admitted to me that mom said the kids had no idea they had another aunt (me).”

“They only seemed to know about her and her first husband, so my dad was also never mentioned.”

The OP didn’t want to be involved during her wedding.

“For this reason, and for the fact it’s so new, and no amount of true healing can happen in the 7/8 weeks from my wedding to when this all started, I don’t want them at my wedding and I don’t want them brought up in a toast given the history that is there.”

“On my wedding day, I do not want to be reminded of the fact a part of my family hates/hated me for being born and has refused any kind of relationship with me for things outside my control.”

The OP’s mom did not agree.

“My mom told me if I won’t invite them, that’s for me to decide, but I can’t censor her.”

“I told her I was asking her to do something for me on my wedding day, and if she can’t, she won’t be given a toast to make on the day.”

“She told me I am being a controlling bridezilla and that one of my grandparents or someone else in the family might bring them up.”

“I told her I had already talked to some of them about it because they approached me first.”

“She got so mad. She told me they are working hard to reconcile and I am holding onto childhood issues that should be forgiven.”

“My mom is adamant I am behaving inappropriately here.”

“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 warned the OP to take wedding toast rights away from her mother.

“Bridezilla??? Not at all. Mom is the MOBzilla here.”

“You’re totally right not to invite them and protect yours (and your Dad’s) feeling and peace of mind.”

“Also, giving Mom that toast is risky business. NTA OP, best wishes in your marriage.”duendepiecito

“This makes me leery of the mom’s speech in general. It wasn’t a case of, ‘Hey, I want to tell this cute relevant anecdote from when you were little, but it would have a passing mention of HalfSibling – is that ok?’ This sounds like she’s purposely LOOKING to include them in her speech.”

“It feels a lot like her chosen method of revenge for her request that they be invited getting denied. Very ‘I can’t make you invite them, but you can’t stop me from talking about them, so HA, I win.'”

“This family certainly has some weird dynamics. I wouldn’t trust ANY speeches, to be honest. She might successfully manipulate someone else into mentioning them so she can ‘get her way’ somehow. Yuck.”ReallyAViolinist

“I’m actually currently planning my wedding, I haven’t even thought about speeches yet. I’m not even sure who is traditionally ‘supposed’ to do speeches outside of the MOH (Maid of Honor) and BM (Best Man).”

“And maybe the Father of the Bride? Would your dad respect your wishes? Otherwise, leave it to your maid of honor and best man, and cut the rest.”

“In all honesty, in all the weddings I’ve been to in the past I’ve always found the speeches boring and usually, they’re before dinner so I’m hungry and they don’t get my full attention anyway.”

“If she puts up a fuss, tell her that’s why you’re cutting speeches.”

“I’d also warn your DJ or band ahead of time not to let anyone ask for the microphone for a speech that’s not in your schedule, just in case she tries to go rogue!”blobofdepression

Others were puzzled out by wanting to talk about this during a wedding toast.

“I’m a parent that was alienated from one of my children for 8 years, no contact for over a year of that. We reconciled 10 months ago.”

“I can tell you there was and still is some overcompensation in my relationship with her, but especially at the beginning. There’s still a lot of unprocessed grief I’m dealing with for all that lost time.”

“I talked about her a lot, sometimes to my eldest child who was still very hurt by the events of years past and she didn’t want to hear it. I had to notch it back by a lot.”

“Your mom sounds like she’s overcompensating as well. I understand her behavior to some degree.”

“HOWEVER, I’m not taking your mother’s side. I never pushed my other children into reconciliation with my previously alienated daughter before they were ready, and I corrected my behavior when I realized I was crossing boundaries with my eldest. I didn’t need a verbal cue from her to realize I was making her uncomfortable.”

“It’s good that your mom is no longer insisting they attend, anyway, but she’s still asking a lot. It takes a special kind of blindness for her to disregard how horribly your siblings treated you.”

“I just don’t understand what her reasoning is for insisting on carrying on with a toast that mentions people who not only won’t be in attendance, but also would trigger unhappy memories and make you very uncomfortable on what should be one of the happiest days of your life.”

“Have you spoken to your dad about the situation?”

“From the sounds of it, he wasn’t treated much better than you by his stepchildren. It seems he might share your sentiments and may possibly be able to help talk some sense into her?”

“You’re NTA in the slightest. You’ve made your boundaries. Don’t let her stomp on them or make you feel guilty for not allowing her to do so.”toddlersareevil

“I also don’t understand how not giving a speech about them would undermine her relationship with them? Especially when they’re not even going to be at the wedding?”ravencrowe

“I don’t even understand why she would even need to mention them in a speech at your wedding!”

“Like, you have no relationship with your half-siblings, and until recently, neither did she.”

“There would be absolutely no reason to even discuss them in her speech, I don’t understand how she could possibly be giving you a hard time about this!”

“I’d just cut her speech, if she’s going to argue with you over it.”blobofdepression

A few thought the mother should be uninvited from the wedding altogether. 

“NTA.”

“So your mom has no problem with all your half-siblings erasing yours and your dad’s existence from their children’s memories, but you have to be reminded of theirs because your mom has a grandchild fever?”

“Wonder who is selfish here…”

“Idk (I don’t know) the whole story, but from what is here, your mom sucks and if she continues this train wreck, threaten to uninvite her.”

“Does she not realize how awful that feels to have people wish you were never born? Also how immature are your half-siblings to still act like that now… Truly not mature enough to have kids of their own.”

“Stay strong OP, and I hope your wedding ends up as you want and without drama.”CatastronautOnDuty

“NTA. She’s trying to force you to be the one responsible for reaching out and making amends when you’re not the one who created the divide in the first place.”

“Why is she so eager to set you up for more rejection from your siblings? There is no evidence that reconciliation is even something they want for themselves. It’s just what your mom is claiming.”

“If she can’t respect your wishes, she can stay TF (the f**k) away and go be with her other kids on the day of your wedding since she’s clearly prioritizing their feelings over yours.”

“How are you even supposed to know if they want to attend or if your mother is pushing them to go the same way she’s pushing for you to invite them?”worryaboutYOUh*e

Despite the mother’s insistence that she was in the right about this, the subReddit didn’t think she deserved to give a wedding toast.

Not only was she blinded by her reunification with her children from her first marriage, but she was insisting on talking about it during a completely inappropriate time.

A wedding toast should be about that: the wedding and the happy couple being celebrated.

Anything more than that could easily feel like an agenda of some kind.

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.