First and foremost, I want to convey that both me and my 14 year old daughter love my step daughter. She is to be married next month. I am proud to say that I am a firm believer that this day belongs to the bride and groom and that no matter what, I will abide by their wishes. I am writing here simply as a means to vent and to see if there are other step moms or half sisters out there who also feel snubbed by the "brides-to-be" in their lives.
The most recent hurtful act of my step daughter is this: When creating the guest list, my step daughter allowed her brothers (biological and HALF)and her cousin (whom she never sees)to bring a guest to her wedding. My step daughter knows that my daughter suffers from social anxiety and is aware that she is very anxious about attending the wedding. When we (the bride's dad and I) asked the bride if her sister could bring a guest (like her brothers are being permitted to do!) to ease the anxiety, she told us, "No, We decided do save on expenses, we aren't permitting guests to bring dates."
My daughter is so sad about not being treated the same as the other siblings that she doesn't even want to go to the wedding. Daily, I remind my daughter that she should go to the wedding because "it's the right thing to do."
I think that my husband should talk to both his daughters about this and that he should be instructing his eldest daughter to treat her sister better.
If there's anyone out there who can relate to this subject, please feel free to weigh in. I'm saddened for all parties involved.
As a wedding planner I see situations like this and others that are much more complicated. In this instance I would agree with your step-daughter. Your daughter is only 14. Therefore, she isn't old enough to bring a date. Rather, she would be bringing another 14 year old friend to hang out with her. She can hang with you. There is no shame in spending an evening with parents.
You mention that your daughter has social anxiety. That comes with being 14. If you have spent much time with young teens, you will understand how self-conscious they are. Your daughter will outgrow it as she develops confidence in herself. You can use the wedding as a teaching time to help her see how an adult acts in a social situation. If you relax and enjoy yourself, she will too.
PS: My daughter isn't suffering from the "shyness" that a typical 14 year old would. She has Aspergar's Syndrome and is being treated for social anxiety. She is so anxious about how's she's going to feel at the wedding that if she can't bring a friend, she doesn't want to go. In her heart, she just wants to go and be part of her sister's day. She doesn't WANT to stay home; but I'm certain as the day approaches, she will become more anxious and will elect to stay home.
And lastly, in addition to already feeling more anxious than even some adults feel (re: Panic attacks, vomiting, etc.,) she is now hurt that her sister doesn't feel that she's as important to the bride as the brothers are.
I'd like my daughter to attend her sister's wedding and I will continue to encourage her to. But I'm not going to force her to. How are each of them going to feel the day after the wedding? If the bride would ponder that thought, perhaps 2 households wouldn't be in tears right now. Very sad. And very unfair.