My dad's drama- advice appreciated!-- CONCLUSION

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Rose217 Posts : 474 Registered: 8/9/08
My dad's drama- advice appreciated!-- CONCLUSION
Posted: May 24, 2010 9:51 PM

Hi ladies, it's been too long. :) With 12 days until the wedding, things are going pretty smoothly and I'm not too stressed, which is great. However, my dad just threw a fit and I need advice.

I'd like both of my parents to walk me down the aisle. I asked my dad tonight and he flipped out. My parents divorce was 8 years ago, but he hates my mom as much as ever, and he refuses to walk anywhere with her, including down the aisle for 34 seconds. (I knew this was possible, but I honestly, naiively, thought he'd put his hatred aside for a few minutes that day). He's not only refused to walk near her, but told me to let him know by the end of the week if she is walking with me, because if so he won't be coming to the wedding. Ten minutes later he announced that if my mom walks me down, he's also taking back his financial contributions to the wedding.

Now, my dad is known for blowing his top and cooling quickly. I'm hoping he turns a 180 in the next 2 weeks, but it's unlikely. I'm not sure how much is bluffing. Please help me figure out how to deal with him and/or plan for the worst case scenario.

I don't see a solution that will please everyone here. I probaby have to let my dad know that my request to both parents stands and he can reject his if he wants but my mom will still walk me, right? He will never forget it and almost certainly never forgive me. (That's his personality- a manipulator who always plays victim). I asked my mom yesterday and she teared up she was so touched, so telling her I'd rather walk alone or with my fiance than with one parent would hurt her greatly.



It's all so much fuss for a simple walk! I truly don't care that much about it, but I know it's important and symbolic to other people so it's in the ceremony. But in the end, trying to please people doesn't work out anyway. That about sums up all my wedding planning, lol.

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VšnTillBruden Posts : 353 Registered: 1/16/10
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 25, 2010 1:35 AM Go to message in response to: Rose217

I have no real words of advice, I'm just sending a ton of mental love your way.

My parents are the exact same way - they hate each other's guts, and when I graduated high school, they had to be sure to sit at complete opposite ends of the bleachers.

And they're the adults. Right...

I'm so sorry your dad is putting you in this bind. I think it is more than reasonable to have both walk down the aisle. You have not snubbed him by saying "Sorry, Dad, Mom is walking me down the aisle". You asked if both could walk, and at least in my mind, that seems like a fantastic compromise.

I wish I could tell you to say "Piss off" to your dad, but I know that's not possible, especially with financial commitments on the line (have your vendors already been paid in full?). I really hope your dad cools down in the next few days. It could just be that you caught him extremely off guard, and his defense mechanism is to blow up. I know that's how my father is, too. I also know that my father has said, since I was old enough to remember, that the only thing he really wants to live to see is walking me down the aisle, and then he can die a happy man. So I can understand why this is so important to men like your dad. But for God's sake, you're not trying to take it away from him. You're trying to share the moment with the woman who means the most to you! I don't think that's selfish at all.

If I were you, I'd stand my ground. Don't be mean or snarky about it, but be perfectly calm when answering his questions. Show him you're the bigger person. If walking you down the aisle means that much to your dad, I highly doubt he'd be willing to miss your wedding entirely.

Love me when I least deserve it, because that is when I need it the most. (Swedish proverb)

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jojolina Posts : 897 Registered: 2/28/07
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 25, 2010 8:00 AM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Rose, your father is being quite childish and insensitive to you, IMO. What you have requested is quite reasonable. In a divorce situation often both parents take on the role of each mom/dad at certain times, so I absolutely see why you would want both of them to walk you. If your dad would consider hurting you (taking back the money/not speaking to you) because of this, I just don't know what to say, except, I can see why your parents are no longer married. I'm so sorry this is happening to you. I hope you stick to your guns and expect your father to act like a man and a father. It is his choice what he does after that. Don't let him hold you emotionally or financially hostage.

 

www.mywedding.com/lorrieandchris

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 25, 2010 8:16 AM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Rose:

I know this is not the best option. However, since your dad is being a brat, here's my advice.

1. Let your mom know what your father has done. Tell her you love her, but since the wedding was planned with his financial backing, and you cannot afford to lose it at this point, you're going to walk in ALONE. (Technically, you are meeting his demand...you're not walking in with your mom.)

2. Tell your mom that when the minister asks "who gives this bride?" (if you're doing this), then SHE is the one who will answer. If you're doing "who blesses this marriage?" or whatever...she does. And let her know that you do feel held hostage, that you did want her to walk you in, and now you feel you cannot.

3. let your father know that since he cannot acceed to your request to have both of them walk you in, you have chosen to walk in alone. If he gives you any flack over it just say "Dad, it's nice to know that your feelings are the only ones which count. It was important to ME to walk in with both of you, but you can't put aside your disdain for mom for ONE MINUTE in your life to do something that is important to your daughter. ONE MINUTE. I'm not asking you to dance with her at the wedding. I'm not asking you to sit next to her or toast how wonderful she is."

Yeah...sometimes they are so not the adults.

Misty

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Agape14 Posts : 201 Registered: 12/31/08
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 26, 2010 10:25 AM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Rose, I have to preface this by saying that I have no relationship with my father (my choice), because he's a jerk. So my advice is VERY biased =)

When people try to manipulate/threaten me into doing what they want, my response is to fight back. If I was in your shoes, I would get a loan/use my credit cards/borrow money from a friend etc, let Mom walk me down the aisle alone, and tell Dad to keep his money. Plus, I would use Cat's lines, but in a more final way.

"Wow Dad, using money to manipulate your daughter is a really classy move. But if that's the way you feel, I'll have to figure out a way to make those payments myself because my wedding day is going to be about love and joy and not threats and hatred. And a word of advice, if you'd like a relationship with me in the future, I'd suggest revisiting your approach to situations because that's not the type of behaviour I want in my life."

Honestly, with what he's done, he barely deserves to be at the wedding (actually I wouldn't want him there...)let alone walk you down the aisle. But like I said, I'm very biased =)

 

 

~~Life's tough, wear a cup~~

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RyanandKelly2009 Posts : 32 Registered: 12/10/09
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 26, 2010 12:34 PM Go to message in response to: Agape14

I have to agree with the other posts that your father is being incredibly selfish and childish. I also think you should note that getting married can symbolize that you are now a full fledged adult who takes their parents requests in mind but no longer blindly obeys demands. If you stand up for reasonable desires this time if can show your father that yes you are an adult who makes your own decisions and sticks with them. Just think about the future. What's next...your father refuses to see his grandchildren for Christmas because you, hubby, and kids went over to see grandma's for the first half of the day?

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VšnTillBruden Posts : 353 Registered: 1/16/10
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 26, 2010 2:59 PM Go to message in response to: Agape14

I have to STRONGLY, STRONGLY, OH SO STRONGLY disagree with Agape on one major part of her advice: do not, under any circumstances, charge large wedding expenses to your credit card unless absolutely necessary, with no other options.

To quote the blog "DIY Bride" -

  • A credit card debt of $20,000 with the average interest rate of
18% will take you 219 YEARS to pay off with a minimum allowable payment
of $325 per month.

  • A debt of $10,000 with an “good” interest rate of 14% will take
you 32 Years 2 Months to pay off using the minimum allowable payment of
$200 per month.

  • A $5,000 debt with an interest rate of 21% will take you 73 Years 2 Months to pay off with a monthly minimum payment of $100.

Here's the rest of the blog on financial planning, if you are interested in reading more:

http://www.diybride.com/2005/01/10/avoid-the-wedding-debt-trap/




At any rate, OP, please do NOT charge something to your credit card unless you have no other options.

Love me when I least deserve it, because that is when I need it the most. (Swedish proverb)

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Lemoncakeface Posts : 33 Registered: 11/13/09
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 26, 2010 3:44 PM Go to message in response to: Rose217

This is such naughty advice but they started the bad behavior.

Tell your mom to not mention her walking you down the aisle until the big day. Keep it mum if you will . Pay your vendors. Usually a balance is supposed to be paid before the wedding day or on the wedding day. Pay them ahead of time anyways.

Then HAVE YOUR MOTHER WALK YOU DOWN THE AISLE.

Can't take back money that was already spent.

This could possibly result in your dad not speaking to you or not coming to the wedding, but that would be his choice and reflect badly on him.

Only do this if you are absolutly ok with giving him the business.

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communitynameis... Posts : 15 Registered: 5/13/10
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 27, 2010 3:17 PM Go to message in response to: Lemoncakeface

I've had some similar issues; my father cheated on my mother and it all came out not that long after the engagement, and they are not on speaking terms. I second whoever said do NOT put the bills on your credit card. Is it worth it to financially shackle yourselves for one day? Wouldn't you and your future husband rather be free of that debt?

But, as far as your dad goes, my father has made some pretty unreasonable requests (like bringing his mistress even though he's not engaged or married to her and even though I"ve never met her), and the most successful method I've had is to NOT get angry. I know that sounds really difficult, and it is, but men in these situations aren't thinking rationally: this is all about THEM, when in reality it's your wedding day and your wishes should be abided by.

Honestly, I would get yourself good and sad and haul your sad cute little self over to dad and say "Daddy. Please. I love you and mom both. I know that you guys aren't on good terms, and I"m not asking you to change that for me. But it would mean so much to me if I could share this moment with two people I love who brought me into the world. Please, Daddy, for me, can you just do this one thing, be there for me for this ONE moment?" (Make sure you look utterly devastated here).

It worked really well for me-and before people jump down my throat for being manipulative, I want to say that everything I said was true and I meant it-I just calculated the best WAY to deliver my message in terms of getting what I wanted for my wedding day. My Dad just rsvp'd last week for my wedding...ALONE, sans mistress.

Good luck!! And if he doesn't agree still, then he's pretty freaking heartless, and I would say do what your heart tells you. I would rather do things my way without his financial support. Or you could call some of your relatives, explain the situation, ask for some financial help with promises to pay them back. I think in this circumstance, wedding, where your father was SUPPOSED to help, that none of your loved ones would judge you for asking for some financial assistance.

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 27, 2010 3:27 PM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Dear Rose,

" he's also taking back his financial contributions to the wedding."

Where, exactly, is the money that constitutes his financial contribution to the wedding? Is that money in his bank? Or, has he given you (or paid your vendors) the money?

If the money is in your hands, or in the vendors' hands, there's not much he can do. You can refuse to give it back.

If the money is in his hands, then you have to plan for the worst case scenario. Can you pay your vendors with what money you have? Is your father's financial contribution absolutely necessary? If he pulls his contribution, do you have the ability to change things?

If someone says to me "If you do this, then I will not attend", my knee-jerk reaction is to say "I'm sorry to hear that. We will miss seeing you there." That would be totally OK if not for any dependence on your father's money.

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Agape14 Posts : 201 Registered: 12/31/08
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!
Posted: May 31, 2010 10:53 AM Go to message in response to: VšnTillBruden

(OP my apologies for going off topic, but I thought this was important to respond to and share another perspective with everyone)

VTB,

I also have to respectfully disagree. The advice from DIY Bride is good, but very generic and a bit sensational. I agree with them that anytime you're borrowing money it doesn't make sense to do it with a large interest rate attached, or to just make minimum payments. But just because you're using a credit card doesn't mean you'll be worse off than if you're borrowing from a bank. And yes, if you're just making minimum payments on a loan (credit card, bank, mortgage etc), you're doing yourself a major disservice because you're basically just paying off the interest. But that applies to any type of loan, not just credit cards.

If you're borrowing money (which should be a last resort at
all times), you should choose the most cost effective option, whatever that may be. When I went to buy my car a couple of years ago, the financing rate (and I have excellent credit) was higher than the rate on my credit card (which is currently at 5.15%. I don't remember what it was 2 years ago, but it wasn't much higher). So it actually made more sense to buy my car with a cheque from my credit card than it was to do financing with the bank. The only balance on my credit card is my car (anything else I buy with it I pay off immediately) and with my agressive payment schedule I'll have the entire car paid off in 2.5yrs from purchase. If I had done a traditional bank loan, with the higher interest rate, it would've taken me an extra 6mths-1year to pay that debt off.

So, blanket advice against using credit cards for large purchases doesn't
make sense. Credit cards in and of themselves aren't evil, and if you're looking to borrow money, they could be used to your advantage. It's just a matter of doing research and making the borrowing tool work for you.


 

 

~~Life's tough, wear a cup~~

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Rose217 Posts : 474 Registered: 8/9/08
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated! --CONCLUSION
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 5:44 PM Go to message in response to: Agape14

Thank you everyone for the advice and comments! The wedding was yesterday and I just wanted to duck back in and let you know how it all worked out.

In the end, I happily didn't have to make the decision of what to do-- my dad calmed down and agreed to walk down the aisle with me and my mom. I hugged and kissed her first, then him, and he put my hand in my FH's, through his tears.

My dad was the biggest naysayer throughout the wedding planning, but in the end, he had a blast and everything worked out great. EVERYONE enjoyed themselves. (And thank god, or it wouldn't have felt worth it to throw a big wedding in the first place, lol).

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated! --CONCLUSION
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 5:59 PM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Dear Rose,

I am so glad to hear it worked out!!! Thanks for letting us know.

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PharmToxGirl Posts : 5,446 Registered: 8/30/07
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated! --CONCLUSION
Posted: Jun 6, 2010 6:15 PM Go to message in response to: Rose217

Rose -
I'm so glad your Dad came around and your wedding was wonderful! Congratulations!

 

 

 

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2dBride Posts : 158 Registered: 3/16/09
Re: My dad's drama- advice appreciated!-- CONCLUSION
Posted: Jun 7, 2010 12:41 AM Go to message in response to: Rose217

I'm so glad your father saw reason! I have been divorced from the father of my children since 1996, and I am now remarried. Nevertheless, their father and I have both been there, and have been civil to each other, for every major event in their lives.

When my son recently proposed to his fiancee, the diamond he gave her was the one from my original engagement ring. As he put it, "To you, it may be a symbol of a relationship that ended, but to me it is a symbol of a relationship that produced me."

In Jewish tradition, both the bride and the groom are escorted by both of their parents. I have no doubt that my son's father and I will escort him, and that my new wife will not. He loves my wife, and she loves him, but she entered my life only after he was already grown. His parents are still the ones whose relationship led to his birth.


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