Wedding Woes

No, just no

I am getting married next summer to my wonderful fiancé. We have asked his niece to be a flower girl along with my niece at the wedding. Just over two years ago, my sister-in-law lost “Baby Ella” at about 5 months. It was a very difficult time for all of them. Baby Ella is now in a small, sealed urn and travels with the family everywhere. It is sweet, and it helps them deal with the loss. I always figured that Baby Ella would come to the wedding but assumed that she would sit in the pew at the church. Over the holidays, my sister-in-law brought up how sweet it would be if my niece (her daughter) carried Baby Ella down the aisle! I don’t want to be a bridezilla but I’d much rather she carry a bouquet or basket of flowers than an urn of ashes. My sister-in-law had another baby this fall who will be too young to walk down the aisle. Am I a jerk for suggesting that maybe Baby Ella could stay with her and the new baby in the pew? I would get a small flower bouquet matching the wedding party’s flowers to set with the urn.
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Re: No, just no

  • If bringing Baby Ella everywhere is what helps them process the loss then that's their deal.  

    But SIL can't insert Baby Ella into the wedding anymore than she can insert herself.

    I would ask the FI to address his SIL, "The flower girl will be carrying flowers down the aisle." 

    The loss of a child is terrible but that does not mean that this child gets to be in the wedding anymore than the infant gets to be in it. 
    short+sassycharlotte989875OliveOilsMomei34
  • Yikes. 

    This would be a big no from me. If this is your husbands sister have him talk to her and explain the niece is invited to be in the wedding, carrying flowers. 
    MesmrEwe
  • @banana468, that's a good point.  The FI should be the one telling his sister that the niece will be carrying a bouquet of flowers (or whatever she will be carrying) and Baby Ella's urn can sit with the family.

    I find the whole idea morbid and inappropriate.  It's bizarre the SIL would even suggest it.  But, if it were me, I'd try to tamp down those feelings and be (have my FI be) as gentle and understanding as we can that this is not something we're comfortable with.
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    OliveOilsMomei34MyNameIsNot
  • @banana468, that's a good point.  The FI should be the one telling his sister that the niece will be carrying a bouquet of flowers (or whatever she will be carrying) and Baby Ella's urn can sit with the family.

    I find the whole idea morbid and inappropriate.  It's bizarre the SIL would even suggest it.  But, if it were me, I'd try to tamp down those feelings and be (have my FI be) as gentle and understanding as we can that this is not something we're comfortable with.
    Right?!?

    I think it's odd too and I say this knowing my niece lived for 32 minutes last year before she passed in her mom's arms.  My personal opinion is that ashes aren't travel companions. 

    This is going to need to be handled delicately.   If they want to bring the urn then bring it.  But the wedding gets to be as the couple wants it - not as the FG's mom wants it.


  • FI should gently explain to his sister that they do not feel comfortable with the niece carrying an urn down the aisle at the wedding and that she'll be carrying flowers and only flowers, but if sister wants, she can bring the urn with her that day and keep it at her seat. It's fine for sister to process her grief by taking the urn with her, but it's not appropriate for her to make her grief the centerpiece of another event, and I feel like that's kind of what she's trying to do here.
    image
    short+sassyOliveOilsMomMesmrEwe
  • OliveOilsMomOliveOilsMom South Jersey member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I feel so badly for the SIL.  She probably needs to see a grief counselor because carrying around the urn is just eyebrow raising and is not helping SIL "heal" mentally. (Heal in quotes because I know you can never be over losing a child)   But the FI needs to talk to his sister or brother and relay that while the urn is welcomed at the wedding, it will not be carried down the aisle.  This sounds so crazy, but maybe having a wristlet made for the urn may help SIL?
    ei34MesmrEwe
  • flantasticflantastic The Midwest member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Yeah, this isn't something you get to suggest.

    You can say, "I plan to bring the urn to the wedding and have her sit with the rest of the family," and you can accept or reject the couple's request to have the urn involved if they request.

    But suggesting this jumped way over the line. Hopefully the FI can say, "We'll be happy to have Ella sitting with the rest of the family, and happy that she can be there in that way" and have that go over well.

    You can't actually make up for the fact that your daughter doesn't get to be a flower girl in the wedding because she's dead. And if she were alive, she'd still have to be asked to be a flower girl. (That's really the key part - you wouldn't be any more entitled to insert your living child into the wedding.)
    short+sassyei34MesmrEwe
  • MesmrEweMesmrEwe member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited January 26
    I'm going to say "Disaster waiting to happen" Flower girls and ring bearers are little kids, little kids do what little kids do!  Baby Ella needs to stay with Mom & Dad to avoid the potential for disaster (i.e. urn drops/scattering of ashes outside while twirling in the FG dress)..  

    I'm also "team wristlet"... 
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