Fiance's Ex's Invitation

ThadeousDecember 27, 2004


My fiance considers her ex-boyfriend to be a "good" friend. She asked if it would bother me if he got an invitation. Well, regardless of wether it's "my right" or not to be bothered isn't our issue. We can get past that. The issue is that I feel his presense would really make me uncomfortable all day long. I am not concerned with wether that's "right" or not just is. And I'd really like to enjoy my wedding day. My question is basically this: do you feel that it is unfair that in regards to friends (ie not family), any prospective invitee should be (at least mostly) happily agreed upon or not get invited? That's what I think, and want to know if (or how far) I'm off base on this. Additional thoughts or experiences would also be appreciated.



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I think he should not be invited if you will feel uncomfortable with him there.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2004 at 6:03AM
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I agree with Alicia. It's your wedding. There shouldn't be anyone there that either your or your fiancee are uncomfortable with.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2004 at 3:35PM
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Generally speaking, yes I think both people should be relativly happy with the guests at their wedding.

However, you have also put up some interesting points. Whether or not you have a "right" to be bothered about an issue is something you and your fiance "can get past". Golly, but I should hope you could "get past" the issue of your right to have feelings! The mere presence of one of your fiance's good friends makes you uncomfortable. Does this mean you do not feel uncomfortable if she and her friend hang out away from you?

Yea, I think both parties should feel good about the guest list, but it seems that might not actually be one of your big issues.

    Bookmark   December 27, 2004 at 7:26PM
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Have you ever met your fiancée's "good friend" or would the wedding/reception be the first time you would meet this guy? How often does your fiancée see/talk to this guy? Is this guy now involved with someone else? How long has it been since your fiancée and this guy split up? How long have your and your fiancée been together/been engaged?

I ask because there are a lot of factors that go into the total equation. One of my old boyfriends attended my wedding (with the woman he was married to at the time), and my husband didn't have a problem with it because he knew that this guy and I truly were friends and had stayed in touch over the years. We didn't/don't spend a lot of time together -- mostly just a phone call a couple of times each year. The situation probably would have been a lot different if my old boyfriend and I went out to dinner together once a month...

So, evaluate the total situation, and don't lose sight of the fact that it's YOU she's marrying. :-)

    Bookmark   December 27, 2004 at 8:12PM
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Another issue is how the ex might feel about attending the wedding. It is possible that he wouldn't come even if invited, but I do agree that both of you should have in-put to who is invited.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2004 at 12:23AM
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1) He is your fiance's friend.
2) You won't even notice that he's there on your wedding day.
3) He probably will feel uncomfortable and will politely decline the invitation.

Is this really something you want to debate with your fiance?

    Bookmark   December 29, 2004 at 10:22AM
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It's her friend. You can either show some trust for your fiancée or perhaps you might want to think about not attending the wedding yourself.

He WAS her boyfriend, and is not her boyfriend now. Not inviting him to the wedding isn't going to make him cease existence. Are you planning to forbid her to have this friend during your marriage? Obviously, you're the one she loves if she is marrying you and not him, but if you are not willing to accept your fiancée as having a legitimate right to have her own friends, you're better off rethinking this committment.

I'm sorry, but this seems to me a control issue that needs to be resolved before the wedding.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2004 at 8:42PM
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I think you should just talk it over with your fiancee in a reasonable way. Over the course of your marriage, you two will have to come to agreement/compromise on many, many things. May as well get started! Good luck and best wishes.

    Bookmark   December 29, 2004 at 10:27PM
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Why would his presense make you uncomfortable? Do you not like the guy, or are you just bothered by having an ex-BF of your fiancee out there in the congregation? If the former, don't invite him; anyone that specifically makes either of you uncomfortable need not be there (although this becomes a thorny issue if it's a close family member). But if he's a decent guy and you just can't get past that your fiancee is still friends with him, I think you need to accept that he still matters to her, and get over it. And invite him.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2005 at 3:25AM
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Does it make you feel uncomfortable when she talks to him or spends time with him? It sounds like you may need to get over this if he is a good friend to her  if you are in fact spending the rest of your life with this woman, he may be around for the rest of your life together also  how are you going to deal with this? Will you be so uncomfortable that you will not want to be around him in the future and therefore the only time she is with him is without you  does that sound like fun? Probably not because many times the only reason someone does not like their significant otherÂs ex is because they are jealous, immature, insecure, etc. do you fall in to this category?  IÂm not 100% sure of your situation, but I say get over it and welcome this person in to your life, do not be mad at someone because they had your future wife before you did, she is with you now.

    Bookmark   January 1, 2005 at 5:58PM
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I have a feeling you are trying to frame the issue as a general policy question ("do you feel that it is unfair that in regards to friends (ie not family), any prospective invitee should be (at least mostly) happily agreed upon or not get invited?") rather than a specific, personal one (like, "Do you think it's okay if I ask my fiancee not to invite her old boyfriend?") -- perhaps because you think she would take it better that way -- talking about abstracts instead of feelings.

Personally, I think you have it backward. You can argue forever about what is the "proper" way to decide on guest lists, or whether you have a "right" to feel uncomfortable. And choosing abstracts over feelings can really backfire: "What's wrong with you -- you think some stupid rule is more important than my friendship with Thaddeus!!" Can you see how that's a dead end?

Instead, I would tell your fiancee that you are feeling bad, and ask her to help you. "Petunia, I know Thaddeus is a good friend, so this is very hard for me to ask. At first I thought it really wouldn't bother me if we invited him to the wedding. I know that he is no longer a boyfriend. But I find that the idea of inviting him has been making me uncomfortable after all. I tried to shake it off, but it is really bothering me. Please try to understand; I tried, but I am just not comfortable having him at the wedding. Let's get together with him some other time, okay?"
Do you see what that says -- and what it doesn't say? It doesn't say you are trying to control her friendships or that you don't trust her. It doesn't give specific reasons for your discomfort (like, "I don't want people talking about him") that she could then argue about. It doesn't say that she can't be friends with him. It doesn't say that she has to agree with you that he should not be invited. It does say that you acknowledge her friendship with ol' Thad. It does say that you know she loves you enough for you to tell her your feelings with the expectation that she will understand and want you to feel comfortable at your own wedding. And that's the important part.

Many years ago, an old boyfriend of mine had become a friend (to my husband, as well), and we liked his fiancee, too. He was from another country, so very few of his family and friends could come to the wedding, which was in the US. He told us we would be invited, and we promised to attend, so he would have people from his "side." As the wedding day neared, though, he called and apologized and told us that his fiancee just wasn't comfortable having me there, even though she knew our relationship was long over, and even though she and I (and my husband) had become friendly the few times we'd met, too. We were surprised and a little disappointed, but we understood completely. I thought then and still think that he did exactly the right thing. Her feelings were a lot more important than our presence.

    Bookmark   January 2, 2005 at 1:34AM
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This is your wedding day and this guy is an ex-boyfriend.@@

No, he shouldn't come.

And yes, the guests in general should be 'happily agreed upon'.

Now there usually is some relative of someone who has an issue, or is a PITA on some level. Those should be suffered if the problems between them are not agregious. Family is family. Better to have crazy Uncle Joe there (with some other family member there to be a babysitter if he acts up), then to anger 10 family members who think Uncle Joe is just fine.

But this isn't family. This is an ex-lover. An ex-lover is a totally different category than whacky family. Ex-lovers should NEVER be invited to a wedding unless both the bride and groom feel completely comfortable with the scenario.

This is your wedding. Don't do it if it bothers you.

And if your bride has a huge problem with it or you, then you have bigger issues that need to be discussed than who's a guest at this party.

    Bookmark   January 3, 2005 at 4:15PM
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