Wedding Etiquette Forum

Inviting FMIL's boyfriend - special situation

So for a little backstory: My FI's mother has a lot of issues: she has been in jail on multiple occasions for very serious crimes. She was never a present mother and skipped from boyfriend to boyfriend all of her children's' lives. Fortunately, she taught her children how NOT to be/act and most of them wound up becoming successful and put-together people. Since my FI and I met, FMIL has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, has been given medication, and has calmed down immensely. However, she is still homeless and drinks/does drugs. Because of her past (and her need for a roof over her head), her boyfriend-picking tendencies are not the best. Here is where it gets confusing: her current boyfriend is the uncle of my FI's nephews/her grandchildren - yes, Grandma is dating Uncle. To outline this further: My FI's sister (my FSIL) Ashley* had two children with Joe. Joe and Ashley broke up a few years ago. Joe's brother, Andrew, met FMIL during Ashley and Joe's relationship. A little over a year ago, FMIL and Andrew began dating (she is 51, he is 26). Andrew is not a nice person - he is very selfish and just an all-around bad egg. He cheats on FMIL, can't hold a job, and has taken advantage of every person he has ever come across. He has stolen from FI (and has taken money from my wallet, even). He is verbally abusive both to her and to everyone else in FI/FMIL's family. 

FI has expressed that he does not want Andrew at our wedding, for many, many reasons. What do we do? FMIL has expressed on multiple occasions that she loves Andrew more than her children and that he comes first in everything. When FI told his mother how he was feeling, she said she would not come to the wedding if Andrew was not invited (I have a feeling she would end up coming. She's very manipulative, but FI is her favorite child (yeah, I know... great thing to say to your other children) so I know she would not miss his wedding.)

I'm totally at a loss for what to do. FI really does not want Andrew there (nor does anyone else in FI's family). Do we have to invite FMIL's boyfriend? Do we have any other options?  Do these special circumstances warrant not inviting FMIL's SO, or are those rules non-negotiable? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

*Names changed because, well, you never know who is reading these boards.

Re: Inviting FMIL's boyfriend - special situation

  • NYCMercedesNYCMercedes member
    First Anniversary First Answer First Comment 5 Love Its
    edited June 2013
    If it's a long time before your invitations need to be mailed, pray they break up in the meantime.
    [Deleted User]
  • If he is a thief  you must protect your guests from him.  Call me judgey but he sounds like an alcoholic and/or addict.  They are rampant in my family.  I will not invite anyone, regardless of their standing as part of a couple, if they will potentially steal from my guests.

    Call her bluff and keep him away. 
    [Deleted User]r&c14OliveOilsMom
  • @kmmssg - Your judgement is right on point. Unfortunately, FMIL/his relationship is based solely on living in other people's homes and doing drugs/drinking - which is largely why FI and I refuse to let them live with us (and Andrew has never let us forget what horrible people FI and I are because of that). Thank you for your advice, I appreciate it! 
  • Just another example of why limiting "must invites" to spouses, fiancés (or optional long-term or live in partners) is a good idea.   The major etiquette books, like Miss Manners, Emily Post (all updated for current gay/lesbian, etc., relationships) limit the MUST invites.  Only this Knott Board says every BF/GF of a guest must be invited.


    First of all, your advice is again, ridiculous.  Second, it sounds like based on what OP said, FMIL is living with this guy. 

    Personally, because Andrew has stolen from your FI, this is the one of the very few exceptions I would make to the "invite all SOs" rule.  I would have your FI tell his mother that he is sorry she won't be attending, but that Andrew is not welcome, and he hopes she changes her mind and attends without him.

     

    snippet17Liatris2010MuppetFan
  • Regardless of Andrews relationship to FMIL, it's a higher priority to protect your guests from a known thief than it is to have her come stag.  Girls have a tendency to leave their purses at tables at weddings since everyone is friend/family.  She may throw a fit, but FI needs to be firm with her on this.
    jendemeyer
  • Given that he is known to have stolen from both you and your FI and that he is verbally abusive to multiple members of your FI's family, I think that you would be crazy to invite him. Your FI appears to have already made up his mind about the situation, so support him when he reiterates to his mother that her BF will not be invited to the wedding.
    image
  • I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
  • Thank you for your input, everyone. I appreciate it. For some reason it did not even click (at least not with me) that having Andrew at the wedding would pose a risk to our guests and the safety of their belongings. I was only thinking about him showing up high or getting ridiculously drunk and acting like an idiot. Now it's a definite no! Looks like FI will just have to put his foot down and we'll see if FMIL folds. Thanks again, everyone! 
  • niki&rob said:
    I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
    Having a wishing well is rude.  You never ask for money.

    Anyway, I agree with all the other PPs.  Not inviting a thief could keep multiple wedding guests from getting robbed, so I definitely wouldn't invite him.
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    jendemeyer
  • Personally I would tell his mother no.  If he is her favorite son, she will leave him at home even though in the beginning she may be upset and raise cane about it.  You got to think about your guests and being happy.  It's you and your fiancees day, if your mom can't understand then there is nothign you can do about it honestly. 
  • snippet17 said:
    niki&rob said:
    I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
    Having a wishing well is rude.  You never ask for money.

    Anyway, I agree with all the other PPs.  Not inviting a thief could keep multiple wedding guests from getting robbed, so I definitely wouldn't invite him.
    How is a place to put cards rude? I have always been to weddings that had a place for cards to go either a wishing well, a birdcage or something else.  The one wedding that did not have anywhere to put cards, everyone just started placing all of the cards onto random tables within the B&B since no one knew where to put the cards.
    You're are talking about different things. Anastasia means a box where guests can give actual coin money, usually with a cutesy poem attached. You means a card box (where the cards may or may not contain cash).
  • imimbles said:
    snippet17 said:
    niki&rob said:
    I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
    Having a wishing well is rude.  You never ask for money.

    Anyway, I agree with all the other PPs.  Not inviting a thief could keep multiple wedding guests from getting robbed, so I definitely wouldn't invite him.
    How is a place to put cards rude? I have always been to weddings that had a place for cards to go either a wishing well, a birdcage or something else.  The one wedding that did not have anywhere to put cards, everyone just started placing all of the cards onto random tables within the B&B since no one knew where to put the cards.
    You're are talking about different things. Anastasia means a box where guests can give actual coin money, usually with a cutesy poem attached. You means a card box (where the cards may or may not contain cash).
    Having this guest, a known thief, near any large sum of money - by the card box that may have cares, by wedding gifts, by unattended purses etc . . . - is a bad idea regardless. 

    I was thinking of doing a wishing well either as a card box, or more probably as an alternative "guest book".  The point is for guests to write a piece of wedding advice on a piece of paper, sign their name, and throw it in.  Now I'm worried that they'll think I'm asking for money if it can be seen as either/or. 

  • snippet17 said:
    niki&rob said:
    I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
    Having a wishing well is rude.  You never ask for money.

    Anyway, I agree with all the other PPs.  Not inviting a thief could keep multiple wedding guests from getting robbed, so I definitely wouldn't invite him.
    How is a place to put cards rude? I have always been to weddings that had a place for cards to go either a wishing well, a birdcage or something else.  The one wedding that did not have anywhere to put cards, everyone just started placing all of the cards onto random tables within the B&B since no one knew where to put the cards.
    Etiquette holds that you never assume that someone will give you a gift at a wedding, and that you never bring a gift to a wedding because then the couple or someone has to figure out how to get it home.  Instead, you send it before or after the wedding.  Therefore, you don't have "card boxes" or "gift boxes."

    This isn't necessarily something I agree with; it's just what etiquette has to say about it.
  •  wishing well, card box - same thing, I thought the right term for it was wishing well. And who doesn't have a card box at their wedding?  You have to have somewhere to keep cards, everyone brings one, and most everyone puts money inside.
    jenn5628
  • manateehuggermanateehugger member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited June 2013
    Jen4948 said:
    snippet17 said:
    niki&rob said:
    I would be worried about my wishing well if your FMIL and her boyfriend were attending!
    Having a wishing well is rude.  You never ask for money.

    Anyway, I agree with all the other PPs.  Not inviting a thief could keep multiple wedding guests from getting robbed, so I definitely wouldn't invite him.
    How is a place to put cards rude? I have always been to weddings that had a place for cards to go either a wishing well, a birdcage or something else.  The one wedding that did not have anywhere to put cards, everyone just started placing all of the cards onto random tables within the B&B since no one knew where to put the cards.
    Etiquette holds that you never assume that someone will give you a gift at a wedding, and that you never bring a gift to a wedding because then the couple or someone has to figure out how to get it home.  Instead, you send it before or after the wedding.  Therefore, you don't have "card boxes" or "gift boxes."

    This isn't necessarily something I agree with; it's just what etiquette has to say about it.
    Yes, ok fine, but most people show up to the wedding with a card or gift. I think it's more rude to make a guest hold onto a gift/card for the entirety of the ceremony or flounder around to find a family member to ask what to do with the gift. 

    Guests are welcome to breeze right by a discreetly placed gift table or cardholder. 
    image
  • I think This is what she is saying is rude.

    Also, someone needs to correct wiki.  60% of people?    
  • To clarify, I have never heard of card boxes being described as wishing wells.  What I was talking about were similar in idea to money trees, where guests are being solicited to give extra money.  Obviously, I don't see anything wrong with giving your guests a place to put their cards!
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • ewww

     

    Wishing wells suck

  • Make sure that you have someone at the door of the ceremony and reception to turn this guy away if FMIL decides to bring him....
  • etiquette is all about not offending people and making sure your guests have an enjoyable time.  Will MIL be offended if you don't invite her SO?  Maybe, but do you care? 

     

    With most SO discussions (my BFF's boyfriend is such a jerk so I HAVE to?) you still care about the friend/guest in question and their feelings more than the minor inconvenience of having an ass at your wedding.  But the comfort of ALL your guests definitely outweighs possibly irritating your MIL.

  • I agree not to give him an invite and express that he is not invited
    image   imageimage
    You'll never be subject to a cash bar, gap, potluck wedding, or b-list if you marry a Muppet Overlord.

  • I've always heard of card boxes referred to as card boxes, and wishing wells are a tacky item asking for money. 
  • IMO, neither a card box or wishing well is bad if they're not outright asking for money.   We had a card box and a small table at the wedding for those who left gifts.   There was no sign asking for things to be placed there and it was simply an easy way for guests to give cards.    There is NO way that we would have been able to hold all the cards in DH's tux jacket or at our table.   The card box alone was packed at the end of the reception. 
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