Wedding Woes

How to ask an alcoholic mother of the bride not to attend the wedding?

My mother is & always has been a functioning alcoholic & has gotten much worse in past year.  At social events, she gets hammered & embarrasses herself & my family.  I've considered asking her not to drink at my wedding, but there's no chance that will work.  I'm afraid I'II spend my whole wedding day worrying about when Mom is going to do something humiliating.  I feel that neither I, nor my sister, should have to babysit her.

How do I ask my own mother not to attend my wedding?  I'm not a hurtful person, but I am not afraid to put my foot down when needed, either.  Help, please?

Re: How to ask an alcoholic mother of the bride not to attend the wedding?

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    That's a tough one. I'm sorry you've had to deal with that your whole life.

    Could you consider having a dry wedding? Would that make it pretty much impossible for her to have alcohol?
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    It sounds like you want your mother there, just not stumbling around drunk. I would warn her that anyone who becomes intoxicated at your wedding will be escorted off the premises, then make sure you have someone(s) there to actually do it should the need arise.
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    If you are going to ask your mother not to attend your wedding, you need to be prepared for the fact that your relationship with her might never recover.  Is your concern something you could talk to her about before hand?  If you invite her, you could always give strict instructions to the bartenders to not serve her if she is getting out of hand.
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    I would ask someone (bartender, day of coordinator, hired security) to watch her for you, and inform her that if she makes a scene she will be escorted away. It definitely shouldn't fall to you or your family and friends to babysit her.

    But Arbo is right, excluding her entirely is a relationship-ending move. If her alcoholism has progressed to that point, then maybe it's a move you want to take.
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    I worked as a bartender for weddings in college.  We had this situation at several weddings and I've seen several approaches. 

    Having a dry wedding is an option, but someone will still have to make sure she isn't sneaking out to the car or the bathroom to drink from her flask.

    Alert management and staff to the situation ahead of time, find a family member or friend to help watch mom early in the day to make sure she isn't wasted before you even get to the church.

    Or don't do anything and be prepared to have her escorted out when she goes too far.  Shrug it off and keep having a good time, because lets face it, your friends and family probably already know she is a drunk.
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