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EDITED: step moms and weddings

Posted by on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:16 AM
  • 76 Replies

My sister is getting married.  We will call her A.  last year, my oldest sister, B, got married.  At B's wedding, A made a board game based off of another board game, and didn't include our SM because there just weren't enough characters in the game without excluding biological family.  SM flipped out, got our dad on her side, and deleted me, and my two sisters from facebook because of this.  Not that we care about facebook, but the message she sent.

So my sister A is planning her wedding and she called me today completely changing all her plans so that SM wouldn't be offended.  She kept saying things like "well, i don't want to have bridesmaids/corsages (sp?) etc because I don't want to unintentionally exclude SM"...things like that.

SM has been in our lives since I was in late high school, they were in college.

She has already told my dad that she is not asking for any money for the wedding.

Do you think that SM should have any say in what part she has in this wedding?  Should she just be happy she's invited and go with it?  How should my sister handle her negativity on her special day?  How can she reasonably discuss this with my dad without offending him and his wife? She's tried a few things, it hasn't worked.  Any ideas?

 ****SM was IN the wedding.  she walked down and was presented like family.  I wasn't even in the wedding procession.********

***My sister apologized twice already.  SM is still upset about it.  My sister explained that she didn't in any way mean to offend her or make her feel like she wasn't part of the family.  The game was a specific board game that my other sister (The one getting married) requested because it matched up with the hotel that she got married in.  There were only 6 characters and i'm pretty sure that I wasn't on the card.  I might have been, I honestly don't remember. 

SM has also been very petty before.  She already told me she doesn't consider my SD family?   She told us that she was so hurt by this board game, and that her daughters would never do something like that.  2 of her daughters didn't even come to the wedding, and at one of her daughters weddings, my sisters and I weren't even in one single wedding photo.  My dad was.  He even did a first dance with the daughter. 

My sister isn't happy about rearranging everything.  She's really nervous and doesn't want to lose our dad.  (there's a long story there, too).

Honestly, it feels like she is trying to make my sister look bad, so that my dad won't like her.  She already did it with me.  He still loves me of course, but he rarely sees me, calls me, anymore. 

SM has been in our lives since my oldest sisters were in college, and I was in senior year of high school.  She married my dad when I was in college.

by on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:16 AM
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Replies (1-10):
Seychelles1409
by Silver Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:35 AM
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I think it's a nice gesture that sister A is planning her wedding so her SM isn't excluded.  It sounds like she is trying to make up for the fact that she hurt your SM's feelings at B's wedding.   I can't tell from your post:  What has SM tried to have her say about in this wedding?  What has SM been negative about so far?  If she hasn't been negative, there is no reason to assume she will be.   I can understand how her feelings were hurt; mine would have been too had I been left out of the game when all the other family members were included.   You sent (in her eyes) a clear message that the "real family" was included in the game and she was not one of them.   That hurts.  How can A discuss this with your dad and SM without offending them?   Apologize for the mess she made with the game last year at B's wedding and do it sincerely, stressing how much she knows SM was hurt, how much SM means to her and how she wants to make up for what she did and how she would like to start fresh, etc.  Apologize to your dad for hurting him and his wife.   Mean it, too!  Should SM just be happy she's invited and go with it?   Would you be?  This sounds more like saying Cinderella should be happy she gets to go to the ball!  No, SM shouldn't be any more grateful than anyone else in your family because that's exactly what she is.....family!

MysticIceWater
by Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:41 AM

I have a solution! Dont invite the controlling all about me stepmom and be happy because its your special day and not hers!

BasketballMama8
by Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:46 AM
3 moms liked this

Its B's wedding. She doesnt want SM to feel offended (whether u agree or not) so go with it, dont question it. Its HER wedding to change around if she wants and thats what she did. 

Talis
by on Sep. 9, 2013 at 1:01 AM

Sm shouldnt have a say at all. Its not her big day.

Birdseed
by Platinum Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 7:59 AM
1 mom liked this

Hmmm.

I can understand why someone would feel left out in the board game example.  There's a lesson I learned in preschool--bring enough to share with all or share with no one.  I think that A is right to feel badly about that gaffe, but I bet that if she simply apologized to SM, the whole thing would be resolved.  SM should act like an adult and gracefully accept the apology and move on.

As far as A's wedding goes, I think that it's guilt driving her and it's silly at this point.  Surely SM doesn't expect to have a bridesmaid's corsage.  She didn't flip out about that at B's wedding.  I doubt that SM expects to be included in all aspects of the wedding, just doesn't want to be actively EXcluded.

It sounds like SM hasn't said a word about anything else, isn't offering input into A's wedding--this is all driven by A's guilty feelings about one mistake at B's wedding.

My vote?  Put yourself in someone else's shoes.  When making decisions about things like the corsages, think about how you would feel.

I had corsages.  I had one made for my SM too (we're not close).  I just tried to think of how I would feel were I in her shoes.  There's a difference between making decisions based on what you want vs making decisions based on "well, I'd like to save a buck here...who is disposable? Oh!  I know, SM!"


packermomof2
by on Sep. 9, 2013 at 9:31 AM

So, exclude a bio family member so the SM didn't feel excluded or else be made to feel guilty for it?  

I have a husband who does whatever it takes to please his SM and father -mostly his SM.  He has said to me "if we do not do this or that, SM will have our butts"... not dad.  If she gets upset, dad gets upset.  So he does his best not to rock the boat.  It pisses me off to no end and I don't think he is right for trying to make her happy when it means things like our family has to do something different to appease her or else face her wrath.

That could very well be what is going on here.  SM got her knickers in a twist, sister doesn't see the point in accommodating SM just so she doesn't have herself a fit that would rival a three year old, and other sister is just attempting to keep the peace even though she doesn't want much to do with the SM because she isn't acting like an adult.

USBrit
by Silver Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 9:52 AM
3 moms liked this

 I agree with the "you should have enough for everyone or nobody". It is very embarrassing to be the person excluded while standing there with everyone else who was included. That was very thoughtless and hurtful. "If" someone made it clear to me that I was excluded because I wasn't a blood relative.....that to me says I have no value in the important things......so, I would refuse to go to any further function unless something changed dramatically. Nobody should be treated poorly whether family or step. Remember the old saying "do unto others". 

Someone should have talked with Dad and SM about the plans before hand so that she could make a decision whether she wanted to go or not. She is important to your Dad and when you disrespect her, you are disrespecting your Dad. Would you want someone in your future husband's family to treat you badly and your husband not do or say anything about it. No, you want your husband to be your hero and stand up for you. 

Birdseed
by Platinum Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 9:55 AM
1 mom liked this



Quoting packermomof2:

So, exclude a bio family member so the SM didn't feel excluded or else be made to feel guilty for it?  

I have a husband who does whatever it takes to please his SM and father -mostly his SM.  He has said to me "if we do not do this or that, SM will have our butts"... not dad.  If she gets upset, dad gets upset.  So he does his best not to rock the boat.  It pisses me off to no end and I don't think he is right for trying to make her happy when it means things like our family has to do something different to appease her or else face her wrath.

That could very well be what is going on here.  SM got her knickers in a twist, sister doesn't see the point in accommodating SM just so she doesn't have herself a fit that would rival a three year old, and other sister is just attempting to keep the peace even though she doesn't want much to do with the SM because she isn't acting like an adult.

Regarding the part in red--No.  I'm not saying exclude anyone.  Make a modification. Find a different game.  Do something to make sure that everyone is included.  Else, have a convo ahead of time and explain.  It's very embarrassing to be left out so publicly without even a heads up.  It's hard enough being a step and trying to fit in to the established family.  Anyone with a hint of situational awareness and empathy could probably ascertain that it could be hurtful in a situation as described to just omit SM because well, there wasn't room. Modify the danged game.  Or find a different one. 

It doesn't sound like there's a history of pettiness on the part of SM in this situation.  It sounds like a case where someone's feelings were really hurt.



phoenixhuntress
by on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:22 PM

Sister A could apologize to SM for making her feel left out & hope that that would help to mend fences.  The apology should be sincere though.  That she's feeling like she should do things for her own wedding as to not offend SM shows that A realizes SM's feelings matter.  That's a great step forward for her to make.

In my case I would not have been upset if I were left off a board game because in the long run it wouldn't really matter; that day is for the bride & groom & not really anyone else (even BMs for that matter).  I would be upset though if one of my SDs invited DH ONLY to their wedding & didn't include me.  I don't expect to have anything to do/any say in their big day as they have a mom capable of helping them out; but I think to exclude me from attending would definitely be a slap in my face as well as DH's.  

EricaG87
by Bronze Member on Sep. 9, 2013 at 12:39 PM
1 mom liked this

While I think that SM overreacted a bit, I can also see why she would be hurt. Blood isn't everything. In fact in many cases it means nothing. How many years has SM been in your lives for? My SF has been in my life since I was in High School and I would never leave him out of something like that out of love and respect for him, just as he would never treat my children as though they aren't his own grandchildren.

If I were your sister I would worry less about changing a million plans in hopes of not offending SM, but rather I would make an apology to her and include her in something very special so that she is much less likely to get up in arms over something that could be percieved as a slight toward her.

I knew that DH's SM never had an children of her own and that she had never really had the whole "Mother of the groom/bride" experience. Because of that I tried to go out of my way to keep her included, one way that I did this was by inviting her to go wedding dress shopping with me and my mother.

"No one can make you feel inferior without your consent" ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

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