Even though it’s almost 2022, the LGBTQ+ community continues to face criticism, sometimes especially from their own families.
Major life events, like weddings and baby showers, are significantly impacted by people who maintain their prejudices, pointed out the “Am I the A**hole?” (AITA) subReddit.
Redditor steph3620 made the tough decision to distance himself from his brother, because he prioritized the feelings of homophobic relatives at his wedding.
But when he was criticized for his response, the Original Poster (OP) wondered if he was being too critical of his brother.
He asked the sub:
“AITA for icing my brother out because he refused to invite my boyfriend to his wedding?”
The OP’s family was divided in their feelings about the LGBTQ+ community.
“I (25 [Male]) am bisexual and have been dating my boyfriend ‘Louis’ for almost two years.”
“While my parents and siblings are supportive, my extended family on my dad’s side can be very homophobic (think conservative Christian background), so I have not officially come out to them yet and have no plans to in the near future.”
“I, however, have some coupley pictures with my boyfriend on social media, so some of the most tech-savvy relatives might already know, although they have never brought it up.”
The issue came to the surface during wedding planning.
“Last year, my older brother ‘John’ (28 [Male]) got married to his girlfriend ‘Sarah.’ They invited everyone in our extended family to the wedding.”
“When I got the invite, I asked John if I could bring Louis as a +1.”
“However, John refused, saying that he supported my relationship 100% but the was supposed to be Sarah’s big day and he did not want her to potentially have to deal with family drama around my sexuality.”
“I clarified that I DID NOT intend to come out at the wedding – I wanted the spotlight to be on the newlyweds – and that, if asked, I would simply introduce Louis as my roommate (in my area sometimes single guests are allowed to bring friends/family members as plus-ones).”
“I also told John I would be extra careful to not act coupley or disclose information about the nature of our relationship to anyone but that Louis is an important part of my life and I wanted him there.”
John was too concerned about what would happen at the wedding.
“John still said no, citing concerns that our relatives might still somehow find out and make a big deal about it.”
“He was also afraid that some of them might have seen my social media already and would take advantage of the wedding to confront me in person since we don’t see them often (for reference I have not seen them since making those posts).”
“I personally think my relatives are more of the ‘giving you the side-eye, acting uncomfortable around you and lecturing you about going to Hell’ kind of homophobic rather than the ‘make a scene and interrupt the wedding’ kind of homophobic.”
“He said he did not take the decision lightly – he was literally on the verge of tears when he said this – but that unfortunately his decision was final and I was welcome to bring anyone else as my +1. He also personally apologized to Louis.”
The OP made a big decision after that.
“I attended the wedding without a plus-one and, since then, I have gone LC (low contact) with John.”
“I wish to keep things civil for the sake of my family but I’m not really interested in anything more than that.”
“Things escalated when I brought my boyfriend home to meet my parents and did not invite him.”
“He found out from my mom and called me crying and said that while he still thought he was right, he wanted to repair our relationship.”
“I said I was really hurt because it’s not like I was planning to steal the spotlight, and that if he prioritized the risk that a homophobic relative might have blown up at his wedding over supporting my relationship, then I had no interest in maintaining a relationship with him.”
“My mom and dad are not taking sides, but my sister says I am the a**hole and I should just move on.”
“Louis is also conflicted on this one.”
Fellow Redditors weighed in:
- NTA: Not the A**hole
- You’re the A**hole
- Everybody Sucks Here
- NAH: No A**holes Here
Some said the brother should have prioritized the OP over the extended relatives.
“NTA. I’m really sorry, this sucks. But if your brother didn’t want a homophobic outburst at his wedding, he could have chosen not to invite the homophobes.”
“It’s your decision what kind of relationship to have with your brother going forward, but ultimately when it came down to it, he didn’t stand up for you, and you are absolutely justified in going low contact if you feel it’s the right thing for you.” – Kaia455
“If you invite homophobes, you don’t blame the victim for any drama they cause. Only they should be blamed, so if you fear homophobes will make a scene but still invite them, then have security and a plan in place to deal with them.”
“Tell them at the first sign of any negativity, that if they make any further comments or issues (in any way at all), then THEY will immediately be removed.”
“Your wedding is not the time, and if they don’t respect that, THEY will be deciding to remove themselves from your family.”
“Why anyone thinks not inviting them at all isn’t the better option though, is beyond me.” – Lexia_extreme511
“If the groom was worried about someone else being an a**hole, it should not have been OP that got punished.”
“That very clearly communicates, ‘I chose an a**hole over you.’ He made a choice and that has consequences. OP owes him nothing.” – justchillinghbu87
Others pointed out the brother wasn’t as supportive as he claimed to be.
“I hate how so many people think choosing silence isn’t choosing a side. It is.”
“Silence speaks volumes.”
“Sometimes it’s someone saying no by not responding. Sometimes it’s someone siding with homophobes by inviting them over others. Sometimes it’s agreeing with someone because you won’t say they’re wrong.” – trilliumsummer
“Big bro made a choice and was even given alternatives. ‘But I’ll just say he’s my roommate?’ Nope – he ain’t coming… But now I expect nothing to change and will cry down the phone at you until you do the hard work and effort after I didn’t invite your partner.”
“Not only that, OP EVEN WENT TO THE WEDDING ALONE! And presumably had to lie every time some a**hole asked him about his dating life, or why he was there with nobody.” – trentraps
“‘I support you 100% but you can’t bring your partner to my wedding because it might bother people.’ Yeah, that’s the opposite of being 100% supportive.” – nolan358
Though his family was divided on how he handled the situation, the subReddit overwhelmingly supported the OP’s desire to attend important events with his partner, and to go low-contact if he felt the need to. His brother might still be his family, but until he was ready to be a true, unconditional ally, going low-contact might very well be best.