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The Bride and Groom are already married...

My sister got engaged back in September 2012. She immediately asked me to be her MOH. I, of course, said yes. She lives in California and I moved to Washington 2 years ago. Her wedding is in a week. 

It has been very difficult and expensive to plan the bridal shower and bachelorette. Thankfully, I have had some help from a couple of my sister's friends, one of whom my sister finally decided to be part of the wedding. Up until March, I was the only brides maid. I have spent all of my tax return on flights, parties, etc., not to mention tons of time looking for dresses (She has changed her mind several times and didn't land on anything solid until last Sunday!).

Then, at the bachelorette party last Saturday, my sister tells me that she and her guy already got married in December! She is keeping this a secret from the rest of my family and her friends. I don't mind that she is already married. What bothers me is that she kept it a secret and now wants me to keep it a secret myself. I feel terrible about keeping this from my family and even worse about standing up at a church and pretending that they are not married already. I would never tell my family, it is not my place to, and it would be more hurtful than helpful to say anything at this point. But I resent her for putting me in this situation. Is it wrong of me to pull out as MOH and just attend the "wedding?" I really don't know what to do!

Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...

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    Uh, yes. To be very honest, that is wrong of you. So wrong. This is your sister. I'm sure she had a reason to do what she did. This actually isn't even that uncommon, I know a few people who have done this for tax or health insurance reasons. And I'm sure she has a reason for not telling your family (ie: she wants your mom to have the moment of watching her daughter get married (or at least to believe she has), she doesn't want to offend your grandparents). Maybe she's not being as selfing as you think she is. It sounds like she probably told you because she needed someone to confide in. To deny her the happiness of having you stand at her side on her "official" wedding day is just rude. I also think you're over reacting. What is the big deal? It's just life, don't take it so seriously. 
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    edited April 2013
    Nutmeg an aRachel, her official wedding took place the day she legally married her husband.

    Niastone, I don't blame you for wanting to pull out. Your sister isn't being honest and she's asking you to lie in front of your family.The MOH official duty is to witness the marriage vows and, sometimes, sign the certificate. Since the wedding has already taken place, she doesn't need a MOH. 

    Your sister was wrong to take advantage of you. She shouldn't have allowed a shower and bp, when she was already married. If she married for health insurance or tax reasons, she should have been honest about it. Having an at home reception after the ceremony is fine. Staging a phony wedding so that she can dupe her parents and other guests is rotten. I wouldn't want to be part of it, either.
                       
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    AddieCakeAddieCake member
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    edited April 2013
    No, it's not wrong of you at all. As Maire said, it was wrong of your sister to take advantage of you like this, and I don't blame you for not wanting to be a part of it. 

    Nutmeg, just b/c it isn't uncommon to do doesn't make it ok. 


    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
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    Wow! I guess that having a concious and a little integrity is frowned upon in the world of weddings. I posted this to get a little sound advice, not to be called "rude" or to be told to keep my mouth shut. My intention is to keep my mouth shut because it is not my place to say anything to anyone. However, I do believe I have a right to choose whether or not I lie to the people I love just to keep up appearances. I don't feel right standing in a church and being a witness to, well, nothing! They already got married and chose to leave everyone out. I understand that there were reasons for them to get married when they did. However, if they feel good about their reasons, why keep a big secret? Why not just announce that they are married and have a big celebration instead of putting us all through the ringer to have the "perfect wedding?" And why tell me about it (four months later) and put me in this akward situation? I do take marriage and life seriously. And if I am being rude because I want to be honest, then, so be it. I am rude. But at least I can sleep at night...
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    Thank you MairePoppy and AddieL73. I thought I was going nuts! I also thought I was being a rotten person for not wanting to be part of a sham wedding. Thank you for the peace of mind :)
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:9d3bdbb1-17e2-47cb-a866-87d19802c4cb">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]No, it's not wrong of you at all. As Maire said, it was wrong of your sister to take advantage of you like this, and I don't blame you for not wanting to be a part of it.  Nutmeg, just b/c it isn't uncommon to do doesn't make it ok. 
    Posted by AddieL73[/QUOTE]

    P.S. I love the am/pm wedding pics. So cool!
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    If my sister pulled this, would my knee jerk reaction be to toss my dress at her and say "I'm OUT?" Yep. I don't think I'd actually have the balls to do it. I'd be so pissed that I spent money on a uniform for a PPD. 

    I don't believe in lying to keep someone's crappy secret. So I'd tell her she has until X date to inform our parents she's already hitched, or I will. And god help her if she's lied to the minister performing the ceremony. I would make sure the officiant is aware that they are performing a VR. Because if they don't know, I would be telling them. 
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    I'm curious, too: Is the minister aware that your sister and her fi are married?  I wonder how he/she plans to finesse the mock ceremony.
                       
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    Thanks Daria24.
    I don't think I have the balls to make her tell everyone, though. Really, I feel like it is her mess to deal with. When people start asking why I am not in the wedding, I intend to say that we had a difference of opinion and that there are no hard feelings. I still love my sister. I just know from experience that lies lead to more lies, etc. Also, I was, and am still, very hurt by all this and I would never want my family to feel the way I do. I think that telling everyone will just cause more pain. I will not, however, support the lie by standing there and pretending this is a real wedding. That's where I draw the line...

    P.S. Love your "excited" face! :)
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:3e9ca40c-2330-401a-a619-d896799445ea">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]I'm curious, too: Is the minister aware that your sister and her fi are married?  I wonder how he/she plans to finesse the mock ceremony.
    Posted by MairePoppy[/QUOTE]

    I have no idea. She told me at her bachelorette party after a few drinks. When I told her that I wished she hadn't told me, she said, "This isn't about you; It's about me," and stormed off. I am supposed to call her tonight to talk about it....
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    edited April 2013
    Nah, I'd let her worry about it. I was just wondering how she got a minister to go along with her lie. He might actually talk some sense in to her when her realizes they're already married.

    ETA - Nevermind - reading fail on my part. I thought you asked "Am I supposed to talk to her about it?"
                       
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    I would feel much like you, and I also think it's wrong for her to ask you to lie for her. Just with the post below that you wrote, my guess is that after a few drinks, the info slipped, and she didn't mean to tell you. I would think that if they kept it a secret for 4 months, they would've wanted to continue to keep it a secret. Drinking can loosen one's tongue for sure! Much luck with your phone call tonight, and keep us informed as to what happens.

    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:854f4a9e-d7f4-4337-849b-d909c4baf8b4">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]In Response to Re: The Bride and Groom are already married... : I have no idea. She told me at her bachelorette party after a few drinks. When I told her that I wished she hadn't told me, she said, "This isn't about you; It's about me," and stormed off. I am supposed to call her tonight to talk about it....
    Posted by niastone[/QUOTE]
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:0d1fc6c1-135f-46e4-817d-797008704d3b">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]Nah, I'd let her worry about it. I was just wondering how she got a minister to go along with her lie. He might actually talk some sense in to her when her realizes they're already married. ETA - Nevermind - reading fail on my part. I thought you asked "Am I supposed to talk to her about it?"
    Posted by MairePoppy[/QUOTE]

    No, I get it. I am going to tell her tonight that I am happy to help her with flowers and such, but I will be stepping down from being in the wedding. Thank you for your advice. I will surely keep you posted.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:0fee2535-8708-4b44-9892-f9648fd3ff16">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]I would feel much like you, and I also think it's wrong for her to ask you to lie for her. Just with the post below that you wrote, my guess is that after a few drinks, the info slipped, and she didn't mean to tell you. I would think that if they kept it a secret for 4 months, they would've wanted to continue to keep it a secret. Drinking can loosen one's tongue for sure! Much luck with your phone call tonight, and keep us informed as to what happens. In Response to Re: The Bride and Groom are already married... :
    Posted by Alesha1978[/QUOTE]

    It almost seems like she intended to tell me but needed the "liquid courage." Anyway, I will most definitely keep you posted. Thank you!
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    I'd be very tempted to demand reimbursement, at least partial, for everything you've shelled out for this little play she's putting on.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:fce5c70e-f790-4883-821d-7587db3cac74">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]NUTMEG is completely wrong.  It is the self-titled bride who is being rude here, not her sister.  She is being rude to her guests by lying to them, and rude to her sister by attempting to get her to lie for her. Nia, you are well within rights to step down as MOH, and I think you should.  This WILL get out eventually, and you will be guilty by association.  People will not understand any excuse she makes; they will only see that she lied to everyone, and will wonder what ELSE she has lied about in the past.  Trust will be forever destroyed. "Sis, I am not comfortable hiding this secret from our family and friends.  I must, in good conscience, back out of being Maid of Honor.  I can't keep your secret, but I won't tell anyone either, unless someone asks me directly.  If someone asks why I stepped out as your Maid of Honor, I'll say that it was no longer possible for me to commit to your wedding.  That's the truth, too." Be firm about it.  This is wrong on SO many levels. I admire your conscience and your integrity!
    Posted by RetreadBride[/QUOTE]

    Thank you so much for giving me guidelines as to what to say. This, for me, is very difficult to put into words. I really don't want to hurt my sister. I just want to do what is right. Thank you again!
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    One thing that really hit me in RetreadBride's post was this: "This WILL get out eventually, and you will be guilty by association." It hit me because when this does get out, some family members will probably be very hurt by this and angry at your sister. My gut reaction is: get out quickly. I agree with you, and you don't want to deal with family issues of this magnitude!
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    Ugh, I equate this kind of stuff with stealing from your own family.  For your sister to lie to them in such a way that they spend money on nothing?  Stealing.

    It's a disgusting way to start a marriage.  A foundation of lies, theft, and manipulation does not a stable marriage make. 

    If I were you, I'd not only tell the family ASAP, I'd also seriously re-consider standing in the wedding.  I don't know if I would realistically confront her, but I just might make up an excuse and bow out.  I certainly wouldn't talk to her much after.


    Don't make me mobilize OffensiveKitten

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    MoxieMickieMoxieMickie member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment
    edited October 2013

     

     

     

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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:f0e1a671-15e3-4b91-9b3b-7f644f34c7da">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]Uh, yes. To be very honest, that is wrong of you. So wrong. This is your sister. I'm sure she had a reason to do what she did. This actually isn't even that uncommon, I know a few people who have done this for tax or health insurance reasons. And I'm sure she has a reason for not telling your family (ie: she wants your mom to have the moment of watching her daughter get married (or at least to believe she has), she doesn't want to offend your grandparents). Maybe she's not being as selfing as you think she is. It sounds like she probably told you because she needed someone to confide in. To deny her the happiness of having you stand at her side on her "official" wedding day is just rude. I also think you're over reacting. What is the big deal? It's just life, don't take it so seriously. 
    Posted by nutmeg2222[/QUOTE]

    Part of being an adult is to make hard decisions.  If you want to marry for insurance or tax reasons, then just let that be your wedding.  My H had no insurance until we married and he was added onto mine.  But we made the conscious decision to wait for marriage so that we can be married in our Church.  Part of being an adult is living with the consequences of your actions.  Just because some people have been married quietly and then had a big "wedding" later, doesn't make it right that they are lying to their family and friends.

    OP - I'm glad that you have decided to tell your sister that you won't be standing up any more.  I know the conversation was a difficult one to have, but it will be the best thing for you.
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    If they are in CA, a marriage license expires in 90 days and if you are already married you cannot get another marriage license!  It would be impossible for someone to conduct another marriage ceremony without signing the marriage license, so I really do not see how she is going to get away with this.  She is going to have a bigger situation when whoever "marries" them asked for the marriage certificate!   She needs to tell your family and guests that they are already married and are saying vows for family and friends to witness.  I do not side eye people who get married in a private ceremony and want to celebrate with guests, but I want to at least know you are already married.

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    In Response to Re:The Bride and Groom are already married...:[QUOTE]If they are in CA, a marriage license expires in 90 days and if you are already married you cannot get another marriage license!nbsp; It would be impossible for someone to conduct another marriage ceremony without signing the marriage license, so I really do not see how she is going to get away with this.nbsp; She is going to have a bigger situation when whoever "marries" them asked for the marriage certificate! nbsp; She needs to tell your family and guests that they are already married and are saying vows for family and friends to witness.nbsp; I do not side eye people who get married in a private ceremony and want to celebrate with guests, but I want to at least know you are already married. Posted by erinlin25[/QUOTE]


    Its actually really easy. Now I'm not going to try to be like "OMG you guys are wrong" or anything but I've known literally tons of people who have done it. They just do the ceremony like normal. I've never actually seen the license used in the actual ceremony so I think its irrelevant. Obviously they don't re sign it since they're already married but the license literally plays no part in the ceremony anyway so the guests never see it. I'm not sure what went down with the priests but obviously they did it without the marriage license.
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    Anyway I'm sorry your sister lied to you that must really suck does she understand that she's done something wrong? I mean if she really doesn't I'd talk to her before dropping out.
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    All I'm going to say is this: I am the only person of a friend whom I know that got married 9months before her so called wedding. As much as it bothered me to actually be her wedding coordinator, I kept my mouth shut. Did I really want to be known as the person who let this secret out and caused some major family drama, even though I knew it was wrong in my heart of hearts?? No, I didn't. It wasn't my place. Granted, she is your sister and that would really piss me off and I think she is beyond rude for hiding this from her family, but make sure you are a million times over sure that you want to let the cat out of the bag. Not telling you what to do, at all, but just make sure you are confident in this decision.

     

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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_moms-maids_the-bride-and-groom-are-already-married?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:357Discussion:4a926e59-c273-4f59-b278-d05ed2fc98e8Post:bf696451-89fe-4a83-9c1b-e52c8e05385f">Re: The Bride and Groom are already married...</a>:
    [QUOTE]Its actually really easy. Now I'm not going to try to be like "OMG you guys are wrong" or anything but I've known literally tons of people who have done it. They just do the ceremony like normal. I've never actually seen the license used in the actual ceremony so I think its irrelevant. Obviously they don't re sign it since they're already married but the license literally plays no part in the ceremony anyway so the guests never see it. I'm not sure what went down with the priests but obviously they did it without the marriage license. Lots of people lie to their friends, which is what this is.  That doesn't make it right.
    Posted by RetreadBride[/QUOTE]

    <div>
    </div><div>No No i thought i made it clear i wasnt trying to make it right I get why its not Im just saying its really more ethics than logistics.</div>
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    In theory, I agree with backing out as MOH, but you are most likely going to get a lot of questions about your decision to do, so be fully prepared to answer those in a way that doesn't also make you a liar.
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