Moms and Maids

Unreasonable MOB?

Some background- my relationship with my Mum has always been strained and I've always had to deal with her making events about her- my graduation, birthdays etc.  I moved away from home at 17, and have lived in other countries for most of my adult life.

She hated my ex with a passion and always said that if I married him, she wouldn't attend.

Anyway, after we split, I felt like maybe we could repair the relationship, and I introduced my fiance to them shortly after we met.

She was initially happy to hear we'd got engaged.  We're paying for everything, but I wanted her to feel involved and like her opinion mattered, so I consulted her on a lot of things, and also asked her to make the wedding dress.  She's picked out all the accessories and shoes etc. to go with it as well.  She's got great taste so I'm fine with all of that.

She's asked for some people to be added to the guest list, which I've done, and also demanded my ex (who I'm still close friends with, 3 years later) be removed from the list, or she wouldn't attend.  He was OK with this, so I did what she asked.

Anyway, for some reason, she had pictured me getting married in my hometown.  Well, actually, it's not even my hometown- we moved here when I was about 8.  I haven't lived here in over 10 years, and none of my friends live here.  Our extended family live in her hometown elsewhere, so it's not easy for them either.

After some consideration of locations near to her and to my extended family, we found the perfect place nearby where we live, which has special significance to my fiance.

Well, we've never heard the end of it.  

She started off by saying the venue was horrible (it's a rustic, outdoor wedding, and I think she was picturing a ballroom and a 3 course meal, which is really not "us" at all) and that all our plans sounded horrible, and everyone would have an awful time.

When we stuck to our guns, she started off with the guilt trip.  She's told everyone about how "humiliated" and "rejected" she feels, how she can't believe that I would not get married where they live, and that I'm being so inconsiderate and selfish.  (I'm actually thinking that since they are well off and most of my fiance's friends aren't, and also since there are only a handful of people coming from there, it is more considerate to have it where fewer people have to travel.)  She keeps telling anyone who will listen about how sorry everyone feels for her, and how embarrassed she is to admit that her daughter doesn't want her to be involved in the planning.

She has said repeatedly that it is "her" day, and doesn't seem to care at all what my fiance wants.  

She's even hinted that my fiance must be controlling and making me want to get married in his hometown- which is where we both live.  

She's now saying that she and my Dad will attend, but only as guests.  She said they will drive home the day of the wedding, and we should not think they will stay the night, make speeches or anything else.  

My Dad is refusing to mediate or discuss the subject, and has just sat silently through everything.  When I tried to ask his opinion today, my Mum said "If I'm not happy, he's not happy!"

I feel really upset, and like a lot of the fun has been taken out of the planning.  My fiance has no contact with his abusive parents, so we only have one set, and although we are getting married away from my hometown (it's about a 3 hour drive) I really did want to feel like I had my parents involvement and support.

I just feel like once again, this has become all about her, and even if it seems selfish, I did want to have one day where it was all about me and my fiance and not have her making a scene by walking out after the ceremony, which is pretty much what she's threatening to do.

Just to clarify, we are paying for everything, she is making my dress and has kindly bought accessories, she has offered to make the flower girl dress, and she also offered to grow some flowers for the tables, as we originally weren't having flowers (I'm allergic, but I can take an antihistamine if it makes her happy!), so we've accepted all her (non-monetary!) contributions- but if we're paying for venue, food etc., it should be our choice no?

Advice, sympathy or similar stories would be much appreciated!

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Re: Unreasonable MOB?

  • Jen4948Jen4948 Houston member
    Tenth Anniversary 10000 Comments 500 Love Its 25 Answers
    edited July 2016
    Well, she gets no say in anything she is not paying for, but she does in the things she is paying for or giving you.

    But I would stop discussing the wedding with her, return anything she has given you or the cost thereof, not accept any more "contributions" from her, and let her know, the next time she mouths off about something she has no say in, that since she has nothing positive to say about your wedding, it is a closed subject.
    OurWildKingdomernursej
  • I don't think I implied that at all.  I'm grateful for what she's contributing.  My point is that she's only contributed the things that she has asked to contribute, and in those things, of course she has a say.  We've both made it clear how grateful we are for those things, but also that we want to have the final say on the things we are paying for.
  • I've just read back through my post- I definitely didn't say she wasn't helping, just that she wasn't making monetary contributions.  I thought that by allowing her to get involved in the things I know she is good at- dress making, gardening- and telling her how much we appreciate that, which we have done, she would feel included without wanting to make every decision, but clearly it hasn't worked as well as I'd hoped, as she's still claiming to feel excluded and rejected. 
  • Yeh, sadly a big part of me expected it.  I was just hoping she might make an exception for my wedding.

  • AddieCakeAddieCake Beyond the Wall member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    I'm really sorry your mom is raining on your parade b/c that's such a bummer. PPs had good advice. I hope your wedding day is still a good one despite all this!
    What did you think would happen if you walked up to a group of internet strangers and told them to get shoehorned by their lady doc?~StageManager14
    image
    OurWildKingdomSP29Garewedding
  • Some background- my relationship with my Mum has always been strained and I've always had to deal with her making events about her- my graduation, birthdays etc.  I moved away from home at 17, and have lived in other countries for most of my adult life.

    She hated my ex with a passion and always said that if I married him, she wouldn't attend.

    Anyway, after we split, I felt like maybe we could repair the relationship, and I introduced my fiance to them shortly after we met.

    She was initially happy to hear we'd got engaged.  We're paying for everything, but I wanted her to feel involved and like her opinion mattered, so I consulted her on a lot of things, and also asked her to make the wedding dress.  She's picked out all the accessories and shoes etc. to go with it as well.  She's got great taste so I'm fine with all of that.

    She's asked for some people to be added to the guest list, which I've done, and also demanded my ex (who I'm still close friends with, 3 years later) be removed from the list, or she wouldn't attend.  He was OK with this, so I did what she asked.

    Anyway, for some reason, she had pictured me getting married in my hometown.  Well, actually, it's not even my hometown- we moved here when I was about 8.  I haven't lived here in over 10 years, and none of my friends live here.  Our extended family live in her hometown elsewhere, so it's not easy for them either.

    After some consideration of locations near to her and to my extended family, we found the perfect place nearby where we live, which has special significance to my fiance.

    Well, we've never heard the end of it.  

    She started off by saying the venue was horrible (it's a rustic, outdoor wedding, and I think she was picturing a ballroom and a 3 course meal, which is really not "us" at all) and that all our plans sounded horrible, and everyone would have an awful time.

    When we stuck to our guns, she started off with the guilt trip.  She's told everyone about how "humiliated" and "rejected" she feels, how she can't believe that I would not get married where they live, and that I'm being so inconsiderate and selfish.  (I'm actually thinking that since they are well off and most of my fiance's friends aren't, and also since there are only a handful of people coming from there, it is more considerate to have it where fewer people have to travel.)  She keeps telling anyone who will listen about how sorry everyone feels for her, and how embarrassed she is to admit that her daughter doesn't want her to be involved in the planning.

    She has said repeatedly that it is "her" day, and doesn't seem to care at all what my fiance wants.  

    She's even hinted that my fiance must be controlling and making me want to get married in his hometown- which is where we both live.  

    She's now saying that she and my Dad will attend, but only as guests.  She said they will drive home the day of the wedding, and we should not think they will stay the night, make speeches or anything else.  

    My Dad is refusing to mediate or discuss the subject, and has just sat silently through everything.  When I tried to ask his opinion today, my Mum said "If I'm not happy, he's not happy!"

    I feel really upset, and like a lot of the fun has been taken out of the planning.  My fiance has no contact with his abusive parents, so we only have one set, and although we are getting married away from my hometown (it's about a 3 hour drive) I really did want to feel like I had my parents involvement and support.

    I just feel like once again, this has become all about her, and even if it seems selfish, I did want to have one day where it was all about me and my fiance and not have her making a scene by walking out after the ceremony, which is pretty much what she's threatening to do.

    Just to clarify, we are paying for everything, she is making my dress and has kindly bought accessories, she has offered to make the flower girl dress, and she also offered to grow some flowers for the tables, as we originally weren't having flowers (I'm allergic, but I can take an antihistamine if it makes her happy!), so we've accepted all her (non-monetary!) contributions- but if we're paying for venue, food etc., it should be our choice no?

    Advice, sympathy or similar stories would be much appreciated!

    Again I must recommend this book:  Will I Ever Be Good Enough, by Dr. Karyl McBride. 

    https://www.amazon.com/Will-Ever-Good-Enough-Narcissistic/dp/1439129436/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1469598353&sr=1-1&keywords=will+i+ever+be+good+enough

    I think reading this book will help you more than all the sympathy in the world.

    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
    InLoveInQueensOliveOilsMomSP29sparklepants41
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers

    If your mom has always put herself first in everything, it is probably because she has some sort of personality disorder.  If you want to continue to have a relationship with your mom, then learn to set up boundaries that allow you to have the relationship you want with your mom.  When mom steps over the boundary, its time to use your words and push her back over the line.  If you are able, it might be helpful to talk this out with a therapist.  The therapist should also be able to provide you with some coping mechanisms in dealing with your mom.

    PP have great advice.  I want to add something about your dress.  Are you sure your mother will go ahead and make the dress?  Will she put off making the dress to try and control you and this wedding?  If you feel the answer could be your mom withholding the dress, then it might be good to start looking for a back-up item you can get quickly.

    Also, push her back over the boundary when it comes to the flowers.  You shouldn't have to take any medication just to get through your wedding day, if the easy thing to do is avoid flowers for the day.

    Also, it always seems like your dad will go along with whatever your mom wants because he has learned over the years it makes his life easier to go along with her.  That is his coping mechanism to dealing with your mom.  So stop trying to find an ally in him, it won't happen. 

    If you mom is also bad mouthing you and people are telling you, it would probably be best to tell them to stop.  "Aunt, I don't know why my mom is saying she is uninvolved.  I have asked her opinion about many things and she is even making my wedding dress.  She doesn't share the same wedding vision as FI and I, so I guess, to her, that means she isn't involved.  It hurts me to hear this, please refrain from passing this information along to me in the future.  Mom can say all that she wants, I just don't want to hear it."

    short+sassySP29Greenjinjo PaperTigersx
  • DrillSergeantCatDrillSergeantCat Oklahoma City, OK member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    What did she think she and your dad were attending as if not guests? 
    poodledoodleooo
  • As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.
  • DrillSergeantCatDrillSergeantCat Oklahoma City, OK member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.
    1) if you'll hit the quote button, it'll make it clear to whom you are replying.
    2) your mom sounds BSC, but you already knew that. 
    3) I know it's not your vision, but your BP will help you get ready. No one needs to make speeches although it's common for the BM & MOH to make a quick toast. And your guests don't really need to be greeted. 

    Please just try to remember this is just who your mother is, she's not going to change no matter what. It sucks, but it is what it is. 
    SP29
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.


    It sounds like you want them to also host the reception, which is a part of the speech and greeting guests.  But your mom is not happy with the reception you are planning.  But she also isn't paying for it, so she doesn't have to be happy with it.  But it also means that she can decline hosting the reception.  This is something that you will just have to accept and move on from.  Doesn't mean you have to like it or you can feel feelings because of it, it just means that it is something you need to accept and move on from for your own sanity.  But it also might be a very good thing you don't give your mom a microphone to say whatever she wants.

    I would also at this point play by ear whether they will help you get ready or even be in pictures.  Plan to have your closest friends or other close relatives there, so you can have people who love you and support you there.  Honestly, it would probably keep your calmer and less nervous keeping your mom away, from the sound of things.

    After the ceremony, do your best to have your parents around for pictures.  If there is a person your mom likes to impress, ask that person to hang around in the picture taking area, so that eventually mom &dad can be brought into the pictures.  If I were this person to your mom, I would have no problems doing this for you.  If I were even a close friend to you, I'd go and find your mom & dad and have them brought to the picture area.

    SP29charlotte989875
  • As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.
    1) if you'll hit the quote button, it'll make it clear to whom you are replying.
    2) your mom sounds BSC, but you already knew that. 
    3) I know it's not your vision, but your BP will help you get ready. No one needs to make speeches although it's common for the BM & MOH to make a quick toast. And your guests don't really need to be greeted. 

    Please just try to remember this is just who your mother is, she's not going to change no matter what. It sucks, but it is what it is. 
    Oh OK, didn't know how to do that.

    What is BSC and BP?

    I guess everyone is right in what they are saying.  I'm looking for a magic potion to cure a fairly toxic relationship :/

    You only get one mother though and I find the idea that I'll never have the mother/daughter relationship that I want too hard to swallow.
  • DrillSergeantCatDrillSergeantCat Oklahoma City, OK member
    2500 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    Oh OK, didn't know how to do that.

    What is BSC and BP?

    I guess everyone is right in what they are saying.  I'm looking for a magic potion to cure a fairly toxic relationship :/

    You only get one mother though and I find the idea that I'll never have the mother/daughter relationship that I want too hard to swallow.
    BSC = bat shit crazy
    BP = bridal party

    Unfortunately, there's no magic potion. We all wish there was. Trust me on this, it's better to remove toxic people from your life before they poison everything. 
    SP29
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    There is no magic cure for toxic relationships....because they are TOXIC.  The only thing that can help you is boundaries, or cutting off contact.  No is not a bad word.  In my experience, weddings only bring out the worst in people, so please don't expect your mom to change just because there is a wedding involved.  Stop sharing details with your mom, call her bluff, and be prepared to buy your own dress.  This is not new behavior for your mom, and she's never going to change.  The sooner you accept that and put boundaries into place, the happier you will be (long term).  It's not easy, but it's what is best for you and your marriage.  Also, just because someone is family does not mean they have cart blanche to trample you and treat you poorly.  That's not family.  That's not love.  Being blood does not make someone a family member.  

    And as far as the flower thing...girl, stop with the martyr act.  Don't have flowers.  You are allergic.  Period.  If you play the victim and refuse to put boundaries into place with your mom, you're going to have a really bad time.  


    image
    OliveOilsMomhuskypuppy14
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Tenth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.
    1) if you'll hit the quote button, it'll make it clear to whom you are replying.
    2) your mom sounds BSC, but you already knew that. 
    3) I know it's not your vision, but your BP will help you get ready. No one needs to make speeches although it's common for the BM & MOH to make a quick toast. And your guests don't really need to be greeted. 

    Please just try to remember this is just who your mother is, she's not going to change no matter what. It sucks, but it is what it is. 
    Oh OK, didn't know how to do that.

    What is BSC and BP?

    I guess everyone is right in what they are saying.  I'm looking for a magic potion to cure a fairly toxic relationship :/

    You only get one mother though and I find the idea that I'll never have the mother/daughter relationship that I want too hard to swallow.

    To the bolded: All the more reason to speak with a therapist.  Not everyone has a perfect home life growing up.  You already know that.  Just because you are an adult now, doesn't mean your relationship with your mom will change.  It can be hard to hear and process.  You may even go through a period of grieving at the mother/daughter relationship that will never happen.  AND THAT IS OK!

    The best way to have any relationship with your mom is to set boundaries.  I know I sound like a broken record, but if you make the relationship under your terms, your mom can't let you down.

    DrillSergeantCatSP29charlotte989875
  • I'm sorry things aren't turning out how you'd imagined. It's a tough pill to swallow. Especially when your dad won't step in.

    Sounds like your mom might have a reputation among family/friends for doing stuff like this. If so, I wouldn't worry about the things she's saying to people. They know her...

    You've compromised on stuff and made accommodations for her. You aren't moving the location of the wedding, so she'll just need to accept it. You aren't doing anything wrong, so carry on and continue on the high road.

    *********************************************************************************

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    short+sassySP29
  • As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.

    Generally speaking, parents are VIP guests.  But still just guests, with no responsibilities.

    Of the items you mentioned above, my mom did not do any of them except for the "greeting guests" part.  No bad blood or turmoil, it was just the way things worked out.  She was busy doing other things in prep for the wedding, so my aunt and cousin helped me get ready and into my dress.  Even my sister, my MOH, was busy with other things (totally fine).

    My point being, if your mom wants to be in a huff and say she is only going as a "guest", that's fine and it shouldn't affect your day one iota.

    From how you've described her, I suspect that when the time comes, she will be ALL OVER doing everything you described in your above post.  She sounds like an attention craver.  I mean, come on!  She's the MOB, that's golden for that personality type.  I'd guess she would make the most of that by being in as many pictures as possible, having all eyes on her while she makes a speech/toast, and talking to all the guests.  Especially having the opportunity to soak in the compliments when guests remark on how beautiful you are in your dress, ie "Thank you so much!  Doesn't Knottie#'s look exquisite?  I made her dress, you know."

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    SP29OliveOilsMom
  • CMGragainCMGragain member
    10000 Comments 500 Love Its Fourth Anniversary 25 Answers
    edited July 2016
    As mother and father of the bride- you know, expected to help me get ready,  take pictures with me getting into my wedding dress, make a speech, greet guests- all that sort of stuff which I always pictured them doing.
    My mother didn't do any of this.  (Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  Read the book I recommended earlier!) My wedding was unusual, but it was OK, and the guests were sympathetic.  I just held my head up and smiled because I was marrying DH, despite opposition from both families.  We have been happily married for 40 years.
    httpiimgurcomTCCjW0wjpg
  • LD1970LD1970 member
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 500 Love Its Name Dropper
    Since you have the type of mother who's threatening to storm out of your ceremony, I'll add this to everything everyone else has said:

    Make arrangements for a backup wedding dress and flower girl dresses, and whatever else your mother has offered to do (aside from flowers, ditch those).

    I have a toxic mother too.  I cut her out of my life entirely, finally, in 2014, and I've never had so little stress.  But the point is, I know what can happen, and I'm worried for you that your mother will retaliate by pulling the dresses at the last minute.  Don't give her that power.  Get a dress.  Get your flower girls dresses.  Don't rely on her for anything.
    You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. ~Mae West
    DrillSergeantCatGreenjinjo InLoveInQueens
  • Thanks all.  I'm thinking as a lot of money has been invested by her into a dressmakers dummy and she has started "practising" her skills by making more clothes for family and friends, she will probably make the dress, but I have a few ideas for what I could do if she did withhold it.

    She started asking this morning how I intended to get to the venue as she and my Dad wouldn't be helping out, so I just said it was up to her when she arrived, but my Dad would definitely be there.  Which he will, he has a habit of putting his foot down about these things at the last minute, to shorten the period of emotional blackmail.

    As to those being a little harsh about the whole "disney fairytale" vision...come on, don't we ALL want our weddings to be like that?  I'm not much of a princess; I'm most excited about marrying such a wonderful man for the rest of my life, but nevertheless, we're investing money, time, and care into making our wedding day beautiful, and whilst I know no-one can "fix" my mother, you can't blame me for needing a bit of comfort on the subject.
  • Thanks all.  I'm thinking as a lot of money has been invested by her into a dressmakers dummy and she has started "practising" her skills by making more clothes for family and friends, she will probably make the dress, but I have a few ideas for what I could do if she did withhold it.

    She started asking this morning how I intended to get to the venue as she and my Dad wouldn't be helping out, so I just said it was up to her when she arrived, but my Dad would definitely be there.  Which he will, he has a habit of putting his foot down about these things at the last minute, to shorten the period of emotional blackmail.

    As to those being a little harsh about the whole "disney fairytale" vision...come on, don't we ALL want our weddings to be like that?  I'm not much of a princess; I'm most excited about marrying such a wonderful man for the rest of my life, but nevertheless, we're investing money, time, and care into making our wedding day beautiful, and whilst I know no-one can "fix" my mother, you can't blame me for needing a bit of comfort on the subject.
    No. Not at all.
    InLoveInQueenslnixon8southernbelle0915


  • As to those being a little harsh about the whole "disney fairytale" vision...come on, don't we ALL want our weddings to be like that?  I'm not much of a princess; I'm most excited about marrying such a wonderful man for the rest of my life, but nevertheless, we're investing money, time, and care into making our wedding day beautiful, and whilst I know no-one can "fix" my mother, you can't blame me for needing a bit of comfort on the subject.
    I never once grew up dreaming of my wedding, nor did I once while engaged and planning my wedding dream of it as a Disney fairytale. I didn't even care much about having a wedding, but DH did, so I rolled with it. And my mother was far away and didn't help with planning bc she couldn't and apparently hates showers of any sort, so she didn't host one and everything was perfectly fine. 

    So, no. We DON'T all want a Disney fairytale. I like real life just fine. 
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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    InLoveInQueensDrillSergeantCat
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    Eighth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I used to want a lot of things for my future wedding.  And then I grew up.  I realized that the day was about hosting people well just as much as it was about an event of unification and love.  I realized that we don't always get what we want.  I realized that people are human, and nothing is perfect.  I realized that just because there is a special event occurring, it doesn't mean the world centers around that event, or that people will change their personalities.  It's called adulting.  It's reality.  Life is not a fairy tale, and if you continually expect a fairy tale, you will continually be disappointed.  It sounds harsh, but it's true.  It's life.  


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    OliveOilsMomGreenjinjo short+sassy
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