Wedding Party

Bridesmaid Crisis & Unhappy Mother-In-Law

I need some advice!

My sister is the Maid of Honor, my brother's wife is a bridesmaid, followed by two college friends and two childhood friends. I like my fiance's sister, but I am not as close to her as the aforementioned ladies, and I have known her the least amount of time. My fiance did not choose my brother to be a groomsman for similar reasons, so we didn't think it would be a big deal. He has graciously agreed to be an usher. We have selected Fiance's Sister to do a reading for the ceremony, which she is fine with and said she would gladly do whatever we needed.

However, my mother-in-law was not pleased. She called my fiance in tears, wanting to know why her daughter was not a bridesmaid. She said she it was an unwritten rule that all siblings were supposed to be included in the wedding party. This was news to both me and my fiance.

Of course now I feel awful! I don't know what to do, but I have a few options:

1. ASK FIANCE'S SISTER TO BE A BRIDESMAID
I haven't asked all of my friends to be in the wedding yet, so no one would know if I replaced them with Fiance's Sister. However, I feel that extending an invitation now would be seen as disingenuous, and she would know she is taking a spot previously dedicated to one of my friends. Also, if I do this, my brother will then be the only sibling not in the bridal party.

2. SEVEN UP
I really don't want to do this, as I think 6 is pushing it, but we could include Fiance's Sister as well as my brother if we had seven bridesmaids and groomsmen. (Fiance has already asked his 6 groomsmen, so we can't do any replacing on his side.) I dislike uneven wedding parties.

3. LEAVE EVERYTHING AS IS
I feel the damage has already been done and there is no graceful way to fix it. I was planning on inviting Fiance's Sister to the "getting ready" portion of the day, so she would be included in a more exclusive group. Fiance is going to do the same with my brother. (Unless that is some sort of tacky faux pas!)

PLEASE HELP ME! I've been turning this over in my head for days. :(

Re: Bridesmaid Crisis & Unhappy Mother-In-Law

  • NYCMercedesNYCMercedes BOS, NYC, DC. Forever a city girl member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    edited August 2014
    I need some advice!

    My sister is the Maid of Honor, my brother's wife is a bridesmaid, followed by two college friends and two childhood friends. I like my fiance's sister, but I am not as close to her as the aforementioned ladies, and I have known her the least amount of time. My fiance did not choose my brother to be a groomsman for similar reasons, so we didn't think it would be a big deal. He has graciously agreed to be an usher. We have selected Fiance's Sister to do a reading for the ceremony, which she is fine with and said she would gladly do whatever we needed.

    However, my mother-in-law was not pleased. She called my fiance in tears, wanting to know why her daughter was not a bridesmaid. She said she it was an unwritten rule that all siblings were supposed to be included in the wedding party. This was news to both me and my fiance.

    Of course now I feel awful! I don't know what to do, but I have a few options:

    1. ASK FIANCE'S SISTER TO BE A BRIDESMAID
    I haven't asked all of my friends to be in the wedding yet, so no one would know if I replaced them with Fiance's Sister. However, I feel that extending an invitation now would be seen as disingenuous, and she would know she is taking a spot previously dedicated to one of my friends. Also, if I do this, my brother will then be the only sibling not in the bridal party.

    2. SEVEN UP
    I really don't want to do this, as I think 6 is pushing it, but we could include Fiance's Sister as well as my brother if we had seven bridesmaids and groomsmen. (Fiance has already asked his 6 groomsmen, so we can't do any replacing on his side.) I dislike uneven wedding parties.

    3. LEAVE EVERYTHING AS IS
    I feel the damage has already been done and there is no graceful way to fix it. I was planning on inviting Fiance's Sister to the "getting ready" portion of the day, so she would be included in a more exclusive group. Fiance is going to do the same with my brother. (Unless that is some sort of tacky faux pas!)

    PLEASE HELP ME! I've been turning this over in my head for days. :(

    #3. It's really more of an honor to be a reader than a bridesmaid as she will be standing alone and serving both the B&G. Would your FI like his sister to stand on his side?
    [Deleted User]
  • I'm voting for Leave Everything As Is.

    Your FMIL should get over it, especially if FSIL is fine with being a reader at the ceremony.
    PrettyGirlLost
  • I need some advice!

    My sister is the Maid of Honor, my brother's wife is a bridesmaid, followed by two college friends and two childhood friends. I like my fiance's sister, but I am not as close to her as the aforementioned ladies, and I have known her the least amount of time. My fiance did not choose my brother to be a groomsman for similar reasons, so we didn't think it would be a big deal. He has graciously agreed to be an usher. We have selected Fiance's Sister to do a reading for the ceremony, which she is fine with and said she would gladly do whatever we needed.

    However, my mother-in-law was not pleased. She called my fiance in tears, wanting to know why her daughter was not a bridesmaid. She sounds incredibly childish and immature. Tears? Over her little princess not being a BM? She needs to get a hold of herself... She said she it was an unwritten rule that all siblings were supposed to be included in the wedding party. She's wrong. This was news to both me and my fiance.

    Of course now I feel awful! I don't know what to do, but I have a few options:

    1. ASK FIANCE'S SISTER TO BE A BRIDESMAID No.
    I haven't asked all of my friends to be in the wedding yet, so no one would know if I replaced them with Fiance's Sister. However, I feel that extending an invitation now would be seen as disingenuous, and she would know she is taking a spot previously dedicated to one of my friends. Also, if I do this, my brother will then be the only sibling not in the bridal party.

    2. SEVEN UP You don't need to have even sides.
    I really don't want to do this, as I think 6 is pushing it, but we could include Fiance's Sister as well as my brother if we had seven bridesmaids and groomsmen. (Fiance has already asked his 6 groomsmen, so we can't do any replacing on his side.) I dislike uneven wedding parties.

    3. LEAVE EVERYTHING AS IS This. Do this.
    I feel the damage has already been done and there is no graceful way to fix it. I was planning on inviting Fiance's Sister to the "getting ready" portion of the day, so she would be included in a more exclusive group. Fiance is going to do the same with my brother. (Unless that is some sort of tacky faux pas!)

    PLEASE HELP ME! I've been turning this over in my head for days. :(
    Your FMIL is overly dramatic. I almost laughed out loud when I read she called your FI in tears.... seriously? 

    No, you don't need to have FSIL as a BM. She can attend as guest. 
    *********************************************************************************

    image
    PrettyGirlLostdoeydo
  • beachyone15beachyone15 TEXAS (the home of my exes) member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Second Anniversary First Answer
    #3 and have your FI tell his mom to calm the eff down!

    His sister is ok with it, so his mom should be too.


    Daisypath Anniversary tickers



    doeydo
  • Your FMIL sounds like she's got wedding crazy pants on. Number 3 for sure. Sides don't have to be even and only you get to decide who is in your bridal party.
    image
    doeydo
  • Just wanted to add: Agree with PP. Option number three. And I think it would help smooth the situation to remind her that it is not just FSIL who will not be in the wedding party, but also your brother, so it is clearly not a personal slight. 
    levioosa
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Option 3. Not only is the choice of wedding party members solely the business of the couple, not their family members, the couple is not obligated to choose any sibling or other family member. You might let your FMIL know this and that those who were not selected as bridesmaids or groomsmen are not feeling slighted.
    atlastmrsg
  • Just say no.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    ashley8918
  • Leave everything as is.  It's worse now because she will know/find out that the only reason you invited her is because of this situation.  That just screams "I didn't want to choose you, but I had to" whether intention was that or not.

    She'll get over it.
  • I just wanted to add that I also think Option 3 is the best.  She is a reader, and that is exactly what we tell people to do when they want to include someone who isn't already in the wedding party.

    FMIL needs to chill.  Tell her everyone is happy the way it is and move on.  Happy Planning!

  • Maybe you should just make FMIL happy, and put FSIL and your brother in the BP. It would be real family solidarity that way, and if you already have 6, 7 won't be much of a stretch. It could go a long way to family harmony. The 2 ladies are going to be in your life, for the rest of your life, and a little sweetness at the wedding could come back as good karma in the long run.
  • I think #2 or #3. Definitely don't replace someone you already wanted to ask! I say 3 for basically all the reasons that were said above. I say 2 because it seems better to include everyone then replace someone (over #1)
    image


    Anniversary
  • Well, here is something I don't understand. On this forum, when a bride says something about her own parents, everyone says "out of love and respect for your parents, do what they want so they will be comfortable and happy". But for her future husband's mother, it is "shut her down now, or you will put up with her bitching the rest of your life". Which is it?
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    danamw said:
    Maybe you should just make FMIL happy, and put FSIL and your brother in the BP. It would be real family solidarity that way, and if you already have 6, 7 won't be much of a stretch. It could go a long way to family harmony. The 2 ladies are going to be in your life, for the rest of your life, and a little sweetness at the wedding could come back as good karma in the long run.
    The point of the bridal party is not to make FMIL happy. 

    Besides, think about it this way.  Let's say you're FSIL and you have been asked to do a reading at your brother's wedding.  Then, out of the blue, the bride asks you to be a bridesmaid later on.  Chances are, the FSIL will find out that the mom bullied the bride into this.  How shitty would you feel to know that you're only a bridesmaid because your mommy made the bride do it?
    PrettyGirlLostashley8918
  • danamw said:
    Well, here is something I don't understand. On this forum, when a bride says something about her own parents, everyone says "out of love and respect for your parents, do what they want so they will be comfortable and happy". But for her future husband's mother, it is "shut her down now, or you will put up with her bitching the rest of your life". Which is it?
    There's a huge caveat that needs to come at the end of this: but it's ok to keep your boundaries.

    To me, the small things that aren't hills to die on is putting someone's name on the invitation, going with daffodil over lemon, giving MIL a rose corsage instead of orchids. The stupid small stuff that isn't worth anyone's energy to fight over. 

    However, in what way does including someone who 1. doesn't want to be in the bridal party and 2. would probably make the bridal party an awkward thing keep FMIL comfortable? It doesn't - it's not her bridal party. 

    Either way, if FMIL wants to throw a fit about this, she needs to be throwing a fit to her son to include her daughter as a groomswoman. The bridal party is in NO way FMIL's business; and if she's crying over it, she's got issues. Because it doesn't really matter to anyone in the long run except the bride - so the bride should get to decide. 
    image
    PrettyGirlLostKnottie72584342doeydo
  • danamw said:
    Well, here is something I don't understand. On this forum, when a bride says something about her own parents, everyone says "out of love and respect for your parents, do what they want so they will be comfortable and happy". But for her future husband's mother, it is "shut her down now, or you will put up with her bitching the rest of your life". Which is it?
    No they don't. You could have exchanged "your mom" for "your FMIL" in this and the advice would have been exactly the same.

    Also, I think there are expectations and boundaries that need to be established - especially in this girl's case. Her FMIL is overly dramatic - what grown woman calls their son sobbing because his sister isn't OP's BM? Seriously? This woman needs to get a hobby and grip. OP's BM's are HER choice - not her FI's, not her mom's and certainly not her FMIL's... 

    My thinking here is that if FMIL does shit like this and gets her way, she's going to keep doing it. Can you imagine how obnoxious holidays would be, splitting grandchild time, etc... *shudder* 
    *********************************************************************************

    image
    PrettyGirlLostOliveOilsMomdoeydo
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    danamw said:
    Well, here is something I don't understand. On this forum, when a bride says something about her own parents, everyone says "out of love and respect for your parents, do what they want so they will be comfortable and happy". But for her future husband's mother, it is "shut her down now, or you will put up with her bitching the rest of your life". Which is it?
    Um, what?  No, no we do not say that.  Not even close.

    PrettyGirlLostashley8918
  • PrettyGirlLostPrettyGirlLost A Land Filled with Unicorns and Cat Hair member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    danamw said:
    Maybe you should just make FMIL happy, and put FSIL and your brother in the BP. It would be real family solidarity that way, and if you already have 6, 7 won't be much of a stretch. It could go a long way to family harmony. The 2 ladies are going to be in your life, for the rest of your life, and a little sweetness at the wedding could come back as good karma in the long run.
    That's not really how karma works.

    "Love is the one thing we're capable of perceiving that transcends time and space."


    ashley8918
  • I need some advice!

    My sister is the Maid of Honor, my brother's wife is a bridesmaid, followed by two college friends and two childhood friends. I like my fiance's sister, but I am not as close to her as the aforementioned ladies, and I have known her the least amount of time. My fiance did not choose my brother to be a groomsman for similar reasons, so we didn't think it would be a big deal. He has graciously agreed to be an usher. We have selected Fiance's Sister to do a reading for the ceremony, which she is fine with and said she would gladly do whatever we needed.

    However, my mother-in-law was not pleased. She called my fiance in tears, wanting to know why her daughter was not a bridesmaid. She sounds incredibly childish and immature. Tears? Over her little princess not being a BM? She needs to get a hold of herself... She said she it was an unwritten rule that all siblings were supposed to be included in the wedding party. She's wrong. This was news to both me and my fiance.

    Of course now I feel awful! I don't know what to do, but I have a few options:

    1. ASK FIANCE'S SISTER TO BE A BRIDESMAID No.
    I haven't asked all of my friends to be in the wedding yet, so no one would know if I replaced them with Fiance's Sister. However, I feel that extending an invitation now would be seen as disingenuous, and she would know she is taking a spot previously dedicated to one of my friends. Also, if I do this, my brother will then be the only sibling not in the bridal party.

    2. SEVEN UP You don't need to have even sides.
    I really don't want to do this, as I think 6 is pushing it, but we could include Fiance's Sister as well as my brother if we had seven bridesmaids and groomsmen. (Fiance has already asked his 6 groomsmen, so we can't do any replacing on his side.) I dislike uneven wedding parties.

    3. LEAVE EVERYTHING AS IS This. Do this.
    I feel the damage has already been done and there is no graceful way to fix it. I was planning on inviting Fiance's Sister to the "getting ready" portion of the day, so she would be included in a more exclusive group. Fiance is going to do the same with my brother. (Unless that is some sort of tacky faux pas!)

    PLEASE HELP ME! I've been turning this over in my head for days. :(
    Your FMIL is overly dramatic. I almost laughed out loud when I read she called your FI in tears.... seriously? 

    No, you don't need to have FSIL as a BM. She can attend as guest. 
    Yep, this. I agree 100%. FMIL is out of line. It's your choice. My FSIL isn't a BM in my wedding, and no one is upset over it. Your wedding, your choice. 
    image
    PrettyGirlLost
  • Your FMIL is wrong.

    Our wedding party includes both my brother and sister but neither my fiances brother or step brother. And that was our decision. Honestly no one seems upset about it. If my FMIL called about this- I'd let FI handle it as it's his mom, and I'd think he'd just want to be gentle, tell her it's our decision and that we're still excited to share our day with his brothers as special guests seated at the reserved family tables. 
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    danamw said:
    Well, here is something I don't understand. On this forum, when a bride says something about her own parents, everyone says "out of love and respect for your parents, do what they want so they will be comfortable and happy". But for her future husband's mother, it is "shut her down now, or you will put up with her bitching the rest of your life". Which is it?
    Wait, what?  That is not what is said.  That might be what's said to a bridezilla demanding a toast be made (which is probably the post you're referring to), but otherwise we are all about boundaries.  Boundaries with In-laws and parents are a make or break your marriage kind of deal a lot of times.  This situation is completely different than telling your parents that even though they gave you 3K for the wedding you're not allowing them to invite a few friends, or demanding that a toast be made by someone who is terrified of public speaking. 

    FMIL is being dramatic.  This probably isn't the first time to pull a stunt like this, and it won't be the last.  

    FSIL probably doesn't even care and probably doesn't want to be a pity add bridesmaid.  A reader is just as much of an honor.  


    image
    doeydoPrettyGirlLost
  • My FMIL has done the same thing!  Cries at least three times a month to my fiance about how her family isn't being represented.  Um, it's not her wedding - so maybe that's why.  Do what you want and forget her.  It's only going to get worse from here if you don't put your foot down now. :)
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