I have a very unique situation on my hand and not very much time to make a final choice for myself. I will do my best to explain important details leading up to this point. I'm sorry it is long and appreciate your time and advice.
My wedding is in 4 months and I am almost certain I do not want to invite my father. I am 25 and during most of my life I have never had a super close relationship with my father. It wasn't "terrible" but he was sort of just there and not really involved in my life. We do not text or call each other ever, even during my entire time at college. But he would make those fb posts about how proud he is of me and such and that he loves me. This never really bothered me I just sort of lived with it and we would talk when I visit home. I am the oldest of 5 and talk on the phone to my mom often so I never really felt like I was missing too much I guess.
In short, my parents marriage was never that great. I remember heated fights as a child/teen, a few that even got physical. So needless to say there were bad times, okay times, and a few good times. But mostly we all just kept on with our lives together.
My parents marriage really began to spiral when I went to college.
Fights get worse, my mom threatens to kick him out for months but it never happens. He'll leave for a few hours and come back. The word divorce gets thrown around but never taken seriously. Just messing with everyones emotions, including my younger sisters still living at home.
Right before the new year my mom finally makes him leave and he goes to stay with a family member who's house is practically empty because she is never there. This is when I become emotionally involved. During one of my parents fights I find out that my dad says "well if we get divorced then I am not going to the wedding and won't walk her down the isle"...
This infuriated me. Up until this point I was not involved in their marriage issues and he has the audacity to speak these words out loud? What kind of father does this? So right away in my mind I was like fine, he does not get to have that honor and will not walk me down the isle. I told my mother this as well.
Some time goes by and things stay bad. I eventually write a long message to my dad telling me how he made me feel and how his actions are affecting our family over all these years. I was trying to get him to wake up and want to make changes to save his life and his relationships. He basically responded by dismissing all of my emotions and blaming everything on my mother. We had some words back and forth and basically when I didn't take his side he responds with a text saying "Bye." Yes. just bye. like a child.
More time goes by and nothing is changing. I know because my mom vents to me every week. I am a good listener so I do listen and try to get her to see clearly that this man is a manipulator. For some reason she doesn't want to accept that.
Anyways part 2 happens when I receive a very insensitive apology TEXT message from my dad that was about 2 sentences after he attended one therapy session. For me, I needed more time and really wanted to see him make progress. Only because I've seen this toxic cycle repeat itself for years. And he said some really hurtful things to me and never acknowledged his comment about my wedding. So, I write another long emotional message explaining this to him and saying I need more time. In no way shutting him out immediately or anything. He responds with anger and sends multiple messages destroying my character and insulting me and using anything he knows that would hurt me. All because I didn't say "it's okay dad" right away.
So now my fiance and I do not want to invite him to the wedding. The way I see it is I have so many people who love and support us and that will do so that day. I do not want to risk an once of toxic energy that day. The kicker is my mom is still trying to fix their marriage, he's living back at home which is hard for my sisters, and I feel like my mom expects me to "put a bandaid" on this just for the wedding so she doesn't have to "do it alone" she says.
If you have read this super long essay I thank you. I was so sure about my choice to not invite my father. But will i regret it later on? I don't want it to be a big deal the day of either, even though most of the extended family already know how my dad is, including his siblings who he has ruined relationships as well too. If he attends the wedding and my brother walks me down the isle, will it be awkward? I have so many thoughts going on in my head and not really many people to go to about this very unusual situation.
If you had a similar situation, how did you handle it? How did you explain or not explain yourself when someone asked? Especially your other parent.