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Wedding Woes

How far am I supposed to go?

I'm a little torn about how to handle this situation, and this post may only be good for a vent in the end, but I'd appreciate any advice or even just the time to read it. I realize this is long. I suppose the TL;DR is: Is it really my job to entertain this girl I don't like for the week leading up to my wedding? Am I out-of-line for being upset that she's inserting herself where she's not welcome? 

We're getting married in our home town, but a lot of our friends have moved away and so this is sort of a DW for them. We're late 20s and many are still underemployed etc. so we've tried to help by putting up as many people as we can in our apartments, picking them up from airport, arranging day-of transportation, etc. Many people are coming in 5 days or more before the wedding and staying for several days after, so, there's a lot involved and that means that this upcoming week is a crazy one. For the most part I don't mind as most are beloved mutual friends, but there is one person I am struggling with. This girl joined our friend group halfway through college, but I never considered her my friend. She very quickly took over the group, before I even knew what had happened, to the point where she was somehow dictating everything from when we'd go to dinner to where and when we'd study (to the point where, on occasions where FI and other friend and I, who were very close and in the same program, would go study on our own, she would get upset). If I didn't want to eat dinner at the time she chose or with her group of 10-15 other people, then I was eating alone. I realize this all sounds SO SO petty, and there is more to the story that would require too much detail, and I've tried really hard to move past it over the last 7 years, but I was dealing with a lot at the time and it has been hard to shake the feelings of extreme isolation and exclusion that I associate with her. She is definitely a 'busybody' but many things she's done and said over the years make me believe that her intentions are less than innocent. I really do not trust her. 

With that being said, she and FI and other friend (one of the GM) ARE on good terms, and while FI and GM admit that she has annoying tendencies, they love her anyway, and they don't see anything malicious about it. She also knows FI's family and they dote on her. FI and GM are well aware of my feelings and don't really understand them, but try to respect them. FI promised me many years ago that I had no obligation to have her in the BP, and when the time came I did not. However, she was obviously going to be invited, and unfortunately due to having only a limited number of people who are qualified to fulfill a particular religious role, she's part of our ceremony anyway. She's not going anywhere, so for a while, even with her coming into town last year and complaining about wedding things that I know we're going to do (nothing against etiquette, things like asking the DJ not to play explicit songs), I was making my peace with her. 

Then a few weeks ago she booked her travel plans for the wedding. She's coming 4 days before the wedding and staying for well over a week. She started by carrying on about how we need to have parties to celebrate this friend reunion. Then she started prying about a bachelorette -- not my right to plan and I didn't think I was having one anyway, so I blew her off nicely by saying I didn't think I was having one but anyway they're not really my thing. She responded by going around me to both FI AND FSIL (a BM) pestering them about how she wanted to plan one, which led to BP having to come back to me because, surprise, they WERE planning one, so then I had to be the bad guy and request that it be BP only. She hasn't decided yet where she plans to stay for any given point during this week, so she might be staying with FMIL or she might be staying with me or, more likely, her presence + space and entertainment issues will result in FI and GM and her moving to our new apartment for the week, leaving me alone. She wants to see other friends and FI has already had to tell her that he can't be driving her around all week, but she doesn't fully get that. Now I'm struggling to figure out how to balance other things we had planned with my parents, with my BP, etc. with her seeming expectation that we keep her entertained all week. 

I feel like she is taking over my wedding (and I'm not asking for much, just to not be catering to her whims when I have so many other obligations and am working 2 days this week too!). I ended up taking an extra day off of work just to avoid being left out of plans. I feel like she is demonstrating many of the reasons I can't stand her, but FI doesn't understand why I'm upset. He's made it clear over the years, btw, that there is nothing sketchy going on between them (well, on his part; I'm not convinced about her), but this is still driving me NUTS. 

Am I completely off my rocker? Am I obligated to keep her entertained when she voluntarily flew in days early? I would appreciate any advice. And if I am off my rocker, I'll try not to be bothered by anyone saying so. I'm just really lost and I really wouldn't be posting here if I had anywhere else to get this out. My family is just enraged and want me to yell at FI (which might not be helpful) and everyone else just loves this girl for reasons I am struggling to understand. 

Re: How far am I supposed to go?

  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited July 2015
    No, you aren't required to entertain her outside of your wedding.

    Tell her if she butts in about your plans, "We have decided to do X, Y, and Z. Our decisions are final and not open to discussion."
    CMGragainMesmrEweonefootinthebayouYogaSandy
  • Not sure why she was invited to the wedding if you feel so strongly about her. I get that your Fi considers her a friend, but if she causes you so much stress, she shouldn't have been invited and she sure as hell shouldn't have been made part of the ceremony. But whatever, that's all done.

    No, you're not obligated to entertain her in the least. I would tell her all your decisions are final and that's it and I would go about your business in getting last-minute things done.
    MesmrEweHeffalumpAmanderson1290
  • HeffalumpHeffalump member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited July 2015
    I'm not trying to be unkind, but I think you're underplaying how much choice you had/have in a lot of this.  There is absolutely no reason she had to be invited, let alone included in the ceremony, but as @snowywinter mentioned above, that ship has apparently sailed.

    Assuming that these people are all legal adults and mentally competent, I think you are way overinserting yourself in everyone's plans.  Transportation, accommodations--these are nice, but not required.  Especially if she knows other people who are also in town, with whom she can presumably make plans that don't involve you.  If driving and housing her are causing logistical headaches, then kindly but firmly tell this woman (and whoever else) that you're understandably swamped the week of your wedding, and you're sure she'll figure it all out.

    People can't "insert" (your word) themselves if you don't let them, so stop letting them.
    Amanderson1290*Barbie*VarunaTTYogaSandy
  • primafaba15primafaba15 member
    100 Comments 25 Love Its Name Dropper First Anniversary
    edited July 2015
    I appreciate the responses, everyone, and even the constructive feedback. I'm struggling to understand what the appropriate way to respond would have been, I guess.

    I hate this girl. Truly. But she is one of FI's best friends, a family friend...she comes with the package. I can't fault him for having a female friend when we have many (mutual) male friends. She's not an ex, most people think my reaction to her is 100% irrational...I just felt like it would have been wrong and selfish to insist on excluding her, to make him give up his friend for me (this girl tagged us on FB with a gushy music video and a note about wanting to be my bridesmaid THE DAY we started dating. Not inviting her would have been a friendship-ending move for him). But maybe I was wrong and that would have been okay? 

    I guess the bigger problem I should be focusing on is that FI and I aren't on the same page. I can't tell her I'm swamped and have too much to figure out when FI doesn't agree that that's the situation. As far as he's concerned "it will all work out" and if my parents weren't just being mean by saying they will not deal with her coming to dinner with all of us, coming to pick up tuxes, etc. (which they are doing to protect me), then we'd be all set. 

    I tried having another conversation with him about my feelings last night and evidently he did not know the extent of my feelings, but I'm regretting it because he doesn't feel like he can change anything now and mostly it just really hurt him. He says she is inserting herself because she believes that I am her friend. I have never been in a position to let her know how I really feel because all of my friends, my FILs, even my now-coworkers (she interned here as a student) adore her. I never got the impression that she particularly liked me even when I was trying to like her way back when, but FI never saw that. 

    She knows other people, but most are either friends who are already crashing with us or FI's family, who lives an hour away. Until a few weeks ago I had assumed she'd stay with FMIL, as she is for the night before and after the wedding, but evidently she won't do that anymore as FMIL works all day and none of her friends in that town want to see her. His family will be taking care of things for her the day of and part of the days before and after. She is not a homebody and is not someone who will be happy spending 3 days in front of the TV while I fold programs, which was my original plan for this week (not fun, but hey, it has to happen). 

    I've actually heard from several folks offline that this rushing around thing is crazy, but for this handful of our VIPs even plane tickets were a stretch and asking anything else would mean they couldn't be here. My family has been making a big deal about how expensive this is for them and other relatives to attend, so maybe I just kind of let that guilt spillover into friends. I also suppose it would not feel like an inconvenience if it were anyone else, but killing myself to spend the better part of 8 days in close quarters with a person I dislike so strongly is too much. 
  • You are well within your rights to say "I am too busy to entertain you" regardless of what your FI perceives!! (The week of the wedding is also about preparing for the marriage)  And no, she's not staying at your place if she's got a job...   You have too many details to attend to! ...  After the reception, you two shouldn't be needing to entertain/host everyone at your house and should be a time for the two of you to focus on the day alone together!!! 

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
    YogaSandy
  • You really need to refocus here.  The appropriate way to have responded is in the past and you need to deal with present.  

    You make a lot of excuses for her, the way she treats you (in your perception) and how everyone else is treating her.  Here's the thing: none of that matters.  Her expectations would be unreasonable even if you adored her.  

    I would tell her in one last conversation, "I'm so sorry, I won't be available for anything that week before my wedding."  You don't have to give an explanation of why and I would recommend NOT giving one.  Just leave it at the end of that sentence.  And then, don't take any more phone calls or respond to texts or e-mails.  You've given your answer, this is not a negotiation.  You're an adult, you don't have to care if anyone likes your answer or not.  

    If FI tries to say anything, I'd explain again that you are too busy, that you and he have [list of things to do] and you simply don't have time to deal with another person.  If he'd like to make time for her around [list of things to do] he's more than welcome to.  It sounds to me like he's already told her no, can't back up his no, so is sloughing it off to you.

    For the future, it sounds like you let yourself get manipulated and guilt tripped by people into doing things you can't do.  You need to firm up your spine and stand up for yourself.  I'm not saying be rude and refuse to do anything, or never give in.  But you really need to make decisions based on what you can/will do and stick to them.
    onefootinthebayoublueeyedkat

  • "She hasn't decided yet where she plans to stay for any given point during this week, so she might be staying with FMIL or she might be staying with me or, more likely, her presence + space and entertainment issues will result in FI and GM and her moving to our new apartment for the week, leaving me alone."

    Sorry, but if my FI even SUGGESTED this he would be sleeping on the back porch. Is it just me or does anyone else see a major problem with FI thinking it is okay to run off to slumber party with a bunch of friends while his bride spends the final days scrambling to finish wedding details??? Why isn't his ass sitting next to his bride at HER place (until all hours if necessary) helping her fold programs? This needy chick needs to deal with her own accommodations, and If FMIL's house doesn't meet her entertainment requirements, tough titties. Airbnb is a wonderful and inexpensive option for traveling on a budget. Anyone who chooses to come in days ahead of planned wedding activities needs to feed, house, and entertain themselves. You wouldn't show up 2 hours before a dinner party and then loiter around the kitchen demanding the hostess sing you show tunes while she is trying to finish dinner, it would be ridiculous. So is showing up to a wedding days early and expecting everyone to take care of you.

    Yes, as PPs have said it is too late to do anything about her being invited and in the wedding, but you CAN do something abut her week-of neediness. It is time your FI figures out if it is more important for him to be a FRIEND or a HUSBAND. This entire event is to celebrate him becoming a HUSBAND. It's time he started taking his WIFE'S feelings into consideration. While friends will always be important, they need to take a back seat to his marriage.
    The bolded bears repeating - in a marriage, your spouse needs to come first. As everyone has said, there's not much that you can do about her attending (short of uninviting her) but you don't need to turn hour house/apartment into a hotel for everyone that you know to attend your wedding. 

    My H and I got married when we were 23, and most of our friends were newer college grads - yet they managed to attend our wedding without us covering their transportation or lodging. They shared rides and hotel rooms and made it work. If your friends are so strapped for cash, I don't understand why they are treating your wedding like an excuse for a vacation and staying for several days before and after. I think you have enough to worry about without having to babysit a group of adults for a few days before and after your wedding. 

    As PP have said, I think that your more serious problem is with your FI and your lack of communication. He shouldn't be putting a friend before you, and *he* should be helping with the wedding stuff (even if it's folding programs).  
    MesmrEweYogaSandy
  • NowIAmSypNowIAmSyp East Hanover, NJ member
    500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 500 Comments First Answer

    "She hasn't decided yet where she plans to stay for any given point during this week, so she might be staying with FMIL or she might be staying with me or, more likely, her presence + space and entertainment issues will result in FI and GM and her moving to our new apartment for the week, leaving me alone."

    Sorry, but if my FI even SUGGESTED this he would be sleeping on the back porch. Is it just me or does anyone else see a major problem with FI thinking it is okay to run off to slumber party with a bunch of friends while his bride spends the final days scrambling to finish wedding details??? Why isn't his ass sitting next to his bride at HER place (until all hours if necessary) helping her fold programs? This needy chick needs to deal with her own accommodations, and If FMIL's house doesn't meet her entertainment requirements, tough titties. Airbnb is a wonderful and inexpensive option for traveling on a budget. Anyone who chooses to come in days ahead of planned wedding activities needs to feed, house, and entertain themselves. You wouldn't show up 2 hours before a dinner party and then loiter around the kitchen demanding the hostess sing you show tunes while she is trying to finish dinner, it would be ridiculous. So is showing up to a wedding days early and expecting everyone to take care of you.

    Yes, as PPs have said it is too late to do anything about her being invited and in the wedding, but you CAN do something abut her week-of neediness. It is time your FI figures out if it is more important for him to be a FRIEND or a HUSBAND. This entire event is to celebrate him becoming a HUSBAND. It's time he started taking his WIFE'S feelings into consideration. While friends will always be important, they need to take a back seat to his marriage.

    image
    VarunaTTprimafaba15MesmrEwe
  • Thanks everyone, and I really do mean that. I know I messed up here, but coming back to read this thread and know that I'm not crazy to be upset has been really helpful the past few days. 

     Is it just me or does anyone else see a major problem with FI thinking it is okay to run off to slumber party with a bunch of friends while his bride spends the final days scrambling to finish wedding details??? Why isn't his ass sitting next to his bride at HER place (until all hours if necessary) helping her fold programs?

    I think this is about where I was at, so thank you for putting this into words and for making it clear this is an okay reaction to have. FI is fed up with wedding planning so I wasn't sure if I was being a bridezilla expecting him to be around. 

    The good news is that the "slumber party" at our new apartment is not happening, although unfortunately this means that she will be staying in my apartment for the rest of her visit save the nights before and after the wedding.  The problem is that all of the communication is coming through FI so it's not really that I'm not saying no to her, rather it's that he's not saying no and I evidently didn't do a good enough job of conveying my discomfort. The plan had always been for her to stay with FILs and I didn't know there was a chance of anything different until she called FI with her already-booked flight information. 
    *Barbie* said:
    My H and I got married when we were 23, and most of our friends were newer college grads - yet they managed to attend our wedding without us covering their transportation or lodging. They shared rides and hotel rooms and made it work. If your friends are so strapped for cash, I don't understand why they are treating your wedding like an excuse for a vacation and staying for several days before and after. I think you have enough to worry about without having to babysit a group of adults for a few days before and after your wedding. 
    I think some of them are treating it like a vacation specifically because they are strapped for cash -- they don't get out to this coast often and so since they're investing in the plane ticket anyway they're trying to make the most of it. My friends may just be particularly stingy, or particularly aware of their student loans, or particularly trapped in the couch-surfing mindset, I don't know. A couple actually aren't currently insured to drive, so they'd have a hard time getting around. But they specifically asked, and we wanted them to be there, and well -- I think at the time (it's a dumb excuse, but) it seemed like a much smaller deal. 


    VarunaTT said:
    You make a lot of excuses for her, the way she treats you (in your perception) and how everyone else is treating her.  Here's the thing: none of that matters.  Her expectations would be unreasonable even if you adored her.  
    ...
    For the future, it sounds like you let yourself get manipulated and guilt tripped by people into doing things you can't do.  
    I think this is probably very true. I'm learning that I don't have a good instinct for when my 'needs' are rational or not, and a lot of times that results in me feeling like I'm a mean person for holding firm or not wanting to be friends with this person.  

    Physically, this is a thing I can do, with a lot of stress -- but I'm a workaholic and spent 4 months doing 2.5 jobs this year (to cover gaps), so I can make it work eventually. Emotionally, this is not where I wanted to be the week of my wedding (and I'm starting to break out a lot, probably from stress). 

    When I talked to FI about everything he was really hurt and basically said he knew she wasn't my favorite person but didn't think it was this bad (I don't understand how he's missed that for the past 6-7 years, but OK), and that unfortunately it was too late to make alternate arrangements. He did say that he will put a priority on getting things done for the wedding. I do not entirely believe him because this girl always, always seems to get her way, but, I guess I'll have to see how that goes.

    And...she's already here, will be in my apartment when I get home from work today, so at this point there isn't a whole lot that I can do I guess. 

    But thank you, again, everyone, for listening and for your suggestions. I bombed this miserably and however this goes down, I probably brought it on myself, but it helps to know that I'm not the only person who thinks this is outrageous. 
    VarunaTT
  • At this point, just let yourself have fun with the wedding.  You're not crazy, but you're stuck, so just do the best you can.

    And once this is over, I would cut this woman out of my life.  No one needs friends like that.
    Heffalumpprimafaba15MesmrEweOliveOilsMom
  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    10000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Why can't she get a hotel room? Why does your FI expect you to host in your own home someone you don't like before and after your wedding?

    I think your foot needs to come down again on that-hard.
    MesmrEweonefootinthebayoudoeydo
  • I had originally invited my 2 MOHs to stay at our apt the week before the wedding. As that week approached, we all realized it would be better for them to get a hotel so I could have some peace & rest before the wedding. I even offered to pay for the hotel but they refused. These are two people I love dearly and relish hosting any other week if the year, save my pre-wedding week.

    Point is, you need some space before the wedding. It sounds like you didn't have a lot of say in this decision but if I were you, I'd let her know you need some quiet time before the wedding and can't host house guests at this time. If you've previously agreed to it and now have to reneg, just offer to pay for her hotel for a couple of nights. You shouldn't have to, of course, and she should be embarrassed for imposing on you, but it sounds like she doesn't have the manners or sense to get her own accommodations like an adult.

    It may be an unplanned expense on your part and I don't know if you have the budget for it, but sometimes the best solution to a problem is to throw money at it, especially if it grants you some sanity as a result.

    I'm sorry this is happening & I hope she gets out of your hair!
    doeydo
  • Maggie0829Maggie0829 Ravens & Bohs & Crabs & O's member
    Eighth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    Since the plans are pretty much set, I will say that you do not owe her anything.  So don't feel like you have to take her places or do anything with her.  This is your FI friend so it is HIS responsibility, not yours.  Just be cordial but do not go out of your way to entertain her.  She is an adult and if she wants to do anything she can figure it out herself.

    So just focus on your wedding this weekend (exciting!!) and enjoying yourself and try your hardest to ignore any annoyances.

    MesmrEwedoeydo
  • Well if she is already in your apartment, put her needy butt to work. She can fold programs! :)

    Have a wonderful wedding, and let us know if you need help hiding bodies!
    MNNEBrideMesmrEwe
  • blueeyedkatblueeyedkat member
    25 Love Its 10 Comments First Anniversary Name Dropper
    edited July 2015
    Have a wonderful wedding, I know I'm late on this thread. But dang girl, I'm sorry you have to deal with all this crap. I'm glad that you're seeing that you doubt your needs, because it's something that is so fundamental to our happiness and health to have basic needs met. Not necessarily just food, but understanding, compassion, happiness, communication. All of that needs to be improved on in a partnership.

    That said, keep these expressions in mind when dealing with the "friend" or any other person that gets on your nerves this week:

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    So goodluck! Have fun! And congrats!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker

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    doeydoTheCheeseWench
  • Hi everyone, 

    I know it's been a couple of weeks but I just wanted to follow-up to say THANK YOU so much again for your support, and to share an update on how things went. 

    My unwanted guest...
    • Did stay in my apartment with GM, FI and I for most of her visit.
    • Usurped FI and my's pre-wedding visit to our priest for confession, slightly annoying because it added to the length of our visit and FI let her. Fr. did however give me some good advice for keeping calm and trying to let old wounds heal. 
    • Did wind up convincing FI to drag us around town for one of the days
    • Usurped FSIL + cousin plans to come keep me company the night before the wedding, which resulted in me cancelling those plans and spending the night alone. 
    • Was...ahem...really overdressed for the wedding (not that we specified a dress code obviously). But seriously, her tiara was bigger than mine!!
    • Caught the bouquet toss
    • Ruined via intentional photobombing a really nice picture of me, FI and GM together (which is of course the version the photographer chose for our proof album because he thought it was funny). 
    On the plus side: 
    • I found some very little common ground with her such that I could stand her (until the wedding day, anyway)
    • She did actually help fold my programs while FI + guy friends took coffee breaks every 15 minutes. They didn't get done until 2 hours before the rehearsal granted... but they did get done.
    • On the schadenfreude-side, she nearly tripped on her inappropriately-elaborate gown while climbing the podium.
    • Even GM and FI were annoyed with her about the picture situation. 
    • She did help with the packing and moving of my apartment (which had to happen within 5 days of the wedding) 
    • She left 2 days early to go see other friends, yay! 
    So, fortunately I didn't need help hiding bodies....I don't know that I can cut her entirely out of my life going forward because of FI, but if I can just forget about the little things that happened at the actual wedding I might be able to put up with her every once in awhile. 

    TheCheeseWenchMesmrEweOliveOilsMom
  • *Barbie**Barbie* member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited August 2015
    Glad you didn't need the bail-out fund, but you really need to learn to say "no" or "OH HELL, NO" as the situation warrants. 

    My H had a female friend that was always somewhat bitchy to me. I have no idea why, as I was never anything but cordial to her. I put up with hanging out with her (on occasion) for his sake, but eventually she had an epic meltdown and blew up at him. (We had made plans but had to back out last minute - I had a very severe migraine that day and the new meds I was taking amplified the situation. I told him he was still welcome to go, but he said he didn't feel comfortable leaving me alone and driving 2.5 hours to get to her town.) We offered to reschedule (and it's not like anyone had put out any money on this gtg.) She decided that the best course of action was to write him multiple e-mails tearing into me, him, and our relationship. He told her that given her feelings it was probably better that they didn't talk anymore because he was always going to pick me over her. 
    MesmrEwe
  • I'm glad she helped at least a little bit.  You definitely need to learn to say no, but I think now that your H now knows your feelings (and he has witnessed it knowing your feelings) it should get easier. 

    I had a similar experience with my FI and one of his friends from college.  She wanted to live with him whenever she was on her rotationals in our area (her parents live 30 minutes away, and FI and I do not live together).  She would always call before "being in the neighborhood" to make sure I wasn't there.  She called him lifemate etc.  When I explained to my FI that I was not comfortable with her, and that I thought she has a major crush on him, he made himself less available to her. It never occurred to him that her behavior had been indicative of something else, until it was brought to his attention. She no longer just "drops by to see the new place," and he is never alone with her. 

    Most of the time when this happens, these "friends" fade away as their position within a friend group is redefined (read everyone gets married/ gets their big kid job while they are still not moving forward).  I would almost think she is struggling with the changes happening in everyone's lives. Her behavior was a cry for attention/ way for her to state her presence.  It could also be she has had a crush on your H, but has never understood/ acted on it.

    If her behavior continues, which will be pretty hard if she is a plane ride away on a limited income, make sure to say "sorry, but we have prior commitments at that time," or level with her to an extent and tell her that while visiting you is a vacation for her, you still have commitments you have to maintain (jobs), and cannot play chauffeur/ host for her for extended periods of time, but would like to grab a bite to eat one night while she is in.  You cannot cut her out completely, as she is a close friend of your  H, but you can absolutely set boundaries  (Berlin Wall? DMZ? your choice).  Discuss with H what you are comfortable with (or better yet not comfortable with), and can afford, but I think you would be wise to agree to never be the ones who extend the invitation for a visit.
  • I'm glad it went well and you didn't have to kill anyone. Hopefully now FI will see what an AW she is, and take your feelings to heart and dial back the friendship. His wife should be more important.

    Now, PLEASEPLEASEPLEASE post the photobomb pic. I've got to see this bitch in her giant tiara. Ooh, I feel a meme contest lurking...
    VarunaTTGBCKOliveOilsMom
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