Wedding Woes

Should we include his kids? (Tough situation) XP

FI and I are getting married on 12/12/14. It's the second marriage for both of us. I don't have any kids, but he has 3...two girls (ages 6 and 8) and a 4 year old son. The idea was to have his 2 daughters be flower girls and his son be a ring bearer with my 3 year old nephew. His kids love me, and I love them as if they are my own. They stay with FI and I every weekend, and they always have fun. He and I are both worried about the girls, especially the 8 year old. She's very smart and understands what's going on. She took it very hard when her father told her about he and I being engaged. (Although FI and I are sure his ex wife put ideas in their heads too. She sometimes can be very good about it and other times be very jealous and spiteful.) It's been a tough situation for her, which I understand. I'm sure I would go back and forth like that also if I were in that position. We go back and forth about whether the girls should be at the wedding at all. Part of us both think that maybe they're too young and fragile to witness their father marrying someone else, even though they love me and know that I love them. Another part of me worries when they get older that they will be resentful that they were left out. Has anybody else gone through this? How did you handle it?

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Re: Should we include his kids? (Tough situation) XP

  • I would include them. 

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  • RebeccaB88RebeccaB88 Figment of Your Imagination member
    2500 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
     I don't see how this should even be a question. Of course they should be at their father's wedding. It's his job as their father to make sure they can talk to him about their feelings about the wedding and him getting married to you, and he should be able to reassure them, as well as fix any damage their mother might have done.
  • decembergrl2014decembergrl2014 NYC!!! member
    250 Love Its Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    Thank you ladies. I want them there more than anything. It doesn't matter to me if they are flower girls or not. It's just a matter of convincing FI to include them. I think if he doesn't have them there that he will regret it, especially when we get the pics back. I'll feel really bad too. To me it will seem like the day was incomplete without them, especially if his son is there. He also mentioned to me about doing a father/daughter dance with the 2 of them in lieu of a mother/son dance. (His mother passed away.) I think deep down he wants them there as well, he's just afraid of the girls saying no. I agree about letting them decide. They may change their minds back and forth between now and then. I just wish there were some "magic words" to say to convince them to come.

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  • I can see how you are concerned with the sensitive nature of the event on the kids.  Have you had a serious conversation with them on what they really want to do?  If you give them the opportunity to decide for themselves and don't feel forced one way or another I think it will be better in the long run because it will be their decision.  Do they have close friends that they could have at the wedding or something that would make them feel more excited about the whole event?
    decembergrl2014
  • Again with the creating problems. Jeez louise.
    mrsconn23Heffalump
  • decembergrl2014decembergrl2014 NYC!!! member
    250 Love Its Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    Xoangelxoabbs- I completely agree with you. FI and I haven't spoken about it in a while, but now after posting this I want to talk about it with him again. I think letting them decide for themselves is the way to go. The 3 of them were in their aunt's wedding over Memorial Day weekend and they said they had a lot of fun. There will be other kids there besides my nephew, and they are very social, so that won't be an issue. They make friends very easily. Aunt Flo- I am not "creating problems". I am asking for advice on how to deal with a problem. Big difference.

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  • mrsconn23mrsconn23 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited July 2014
    If I were in your position, I'd be upset that he is considering not having them there. You guys are becoming a family, which includes his kids. They may still be figuring out their relationship with you and how you fit into their lives, but for him to consider leaving them out is only going to hurt them and your relationship with them in the long-run. 

    Also, while he wants to be sensitive to his kid's feelings...I think that this is a non-negotiable situation. They should be there and I don't think it should be a choice for them. Unless you think they're going to cause a complete scene...but that's a whole other issue if that is the case. 

     FWIW, I'm a stepmom. My situation is a little different for a lot of reasons, but I also understand how you feel about not wanting to push things.
    VarunaTT
  • If I were in your position, I'd be upset that he is considering not having them there. You guys are becoming a family, which includes his kids. They may still be figuring out their relationship with you and how you fit into their lives, but for him to consider leaving them out is only going to hurt them and your relationship with them in the long-run. 

    Also, while he wants to be sensitive to his kid's feelings...I think that this is a non-negotiable situation. They should be there and I don't think it should be a choice for them. Unless you think they're going to cause a complete scene...but that's a whole other issue if that is the case. 

     FWIW, I'm a stepmom. My situation is a little different for a lot of reasons, but I also understand how you feel about not wanting to push things.
    I completely agree with mrs.conn. Kids at that age shouldn't be given choices like this - it's too heavy for them to deal with.  8 year old might say she doesn't want to go, but then the day of she may change her mind and cry all day.  In 10 years, she might not remember that she made the choice, just that she wasn't there for her dad's wedding.  That's just an awful lot of responsibility for a kid...
    And yes, by even considering not having the kids there, you guys are making it a problem.
    mrsconn23Heffalump
  • decembergrl2014decembergrl2014 NYC!!! member
    250 Love Its Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    And yes, by even considering not having the kids there, you guys are making it a problem. I think you and I will have to agree to disagree about your above statement.

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  • mrsconn23mrsconn23 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited July 2014
    And yes, by even considering not having the kids there, you guys are making it a problem. I think you and I will have to agree to disagree about your above statement.
    Did you read anything before that statement?  

    Because seriously, giving the kids this much autonomy right now is too much for so many reasons.  And kids are contrary by nature.  They don't know what is best for them and do not take future implications into account.  

    So yes, the fact that this is even a consideration is why people think you're 'creating a problem'.  
    GBCK*Barbie*
  • decembergrl2014decembergrl2014 NYC!!! member
    250 Love Its Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    I agree with xoangelxoabbs.

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    cupcake985
  • VarunaTTVarunaTT member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited July 2014
    So, you really just came looking for validation for what you want to do, not grown adult opinions who might have life experience already, giving their opinions on perhaps better tracks.

    Noted.  You've gotten the one, non-regular, comment validating you.  Good luck and come update us after this all goes now, m'kay?
    mrsconn23
  • cupcake985cupcake985 member
    Fifth Anniversary 10 Comments 5 Love Its
    edited July 2014
    I am an adult and have had many life experiences.  Yes, I am a "non-regular" on this forum, so what, that means my opinion doesn't deserve weight?  Everyone is allowed their own opinion...no need to make someone feel bad about an already sensitive topic.  She obviously wouldn't have wrote on this page if it didn't bother her. If you read her original post, my comment was not validating her, it was a completely different suggestion. If anything, it is better to get the opinions of many different people with a variety of backgrounds and decide what is right for yourself.
    decembergrl2014
  • Part of us both think that maybe they're too young and fragile to witness their father marrying someone else.
    I cannot say that I have any experience whatsoever with having stepchildren, being a stepchild, or marrying a stepchild; however, this is absolute BS.

    If you're concerned about putting the children and their welfare first, why are you rushing into a marriage if you think that said marriage will scar them? From your OP, you live with your FI and consistently spend time with them every weekend. If you're already living as a couple and parenting as a couple, then what real difference does a piece of paper make?

    If you're concerned that this engagement/wedding a wake-up call for the kids (at least the 8yo) that their dad has moved on and will not be getting back together with their mom, doing it now vs. 5 years from now isn't going to make that much of a difference. (.... and really, if you think about it, all that another marriage would do is put a roadblock in the way of that happening - he could always divorce you and remarry the ex - it would just be a bit more complicated.)

    I think your FI should sit down with his daughter(s) and ask what about the engagement is upsetting them and reassure them that just because he is marrying you, it does not mean that he loves them any less, that they are any less important to him, and that you are not replacing their bio mother, but will just be another person who will provide love and care for them. 

    I agree with the others who think you're creating your own problem here. 4-8yos should not have a choice in this matter, and should absolutely attend their parents' weddings. If you were marrying someone with adult offspring, it would be a completely different matter in letting them choose. 
    Heffalumpmrsconn23
  • Include them; my Dad didn't invite me to his second wedding ( I was 12) and it was incredibly hurtful 
  • decembergrl2014decembergrl2014 NYC!!! member
    250 Love Its Third Anniversary 100 Comments Name Dropper
    I did not post this dilemma for it to cause nasty responses to me or to other people who took time out of their own busy lives to help me with a delicate situation. I thank you all for your advice, and for sharing your experiences. If anyone else wants to share their advice or experiences that would be great, but I don't think that attacking each other or attacking me will be beneficial.

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    cupcake985
  • I agree with the others who think you're creating your own problem here. 4-8yos should not have a choice in this matter, and should absolutely attend their parents' weddings.
    ^^^ This.  My 5 y.o. would eat fruit snacks for every meal and stay up until midnight watching the Wild Kratts if she ran the world.  There's a very good reason that kids this age are not allowed to vote, sign contracts, etc.  Parents need to be the adults and set reasonable, firm guidelines in the best interests of their kids, because they simply don't have the intellectual or emotional development necessary to do it for themselves at this age.
    mrsconn23VarunaTTMegEn1
  • MegEn1MegEn1 member
    500 Love Its 500 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer
    If it were me, those kids would be there if they liked it or not. At such a young age they might be spiteful, or be little drama queens about the whole thing ... but 5 or 10 years later they may look back and really regret it. What's more, they may blame you and your FI about not including them (because kids aren't the most logical) even if it's their decision, and that might breed resentment.

    Drag them kicking and screaming to show them that no matter what, you guys are a family. In the best of times and the worst of times. 

    Achievement Unlocked: Survived Your Wedding! 
    VarunaTTMNNEBride
  • 6fsn6fsn member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    I fail to see this as a tough situation.  They are his CHILDREN and about to become YOUR CHILDREN.  Damn straight they should be included.
    mrsconn23VarunaTTMNNEBride
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