My sister-in-law has a large family and had been planning a large but low-key wedding when she set out to marry my brother several years ago. All seemed to be going smoothly until my sister-in-law’s stepmother announced that she planned to wear her old wedding dress to the wedding. She seemed to think it would be a fine idea for her to look like a bride on her stepdaughter’s wedding day!
My sister-in-law politely but firmly said that she didn’t think it was appropriate for her stepmother to wear the wedding dress, and asked that she would please choose different attire for the wedding day. The stepmother was somehow mortally offended by this sentiment and refused to attend the wedding unless she was allowed to wear the dress. My sister-in-law would not yield (good for her!). Unfortunately, my sister-in-law’s father refusd to attend the wedding as well in order to show solidarity with his wife. My sister-in-law was devastated that her father would not walk her down the aisle.
While to my side of the family and roughly half of my sister-in-law’s side of the family it was perfectly clear that it would be tacky and tasteless to wear your old wedding dress to somebody else’s wedding, several other members of my sister-in-law’s family disagreed and there were arguments about who was in the right.
My sister-in-law became so stressed and upset about the arguments that she ended up cancelling the wedding and reception she had planned and instead she and my brother were married in a different state with only my side of the family and some close friends in attendance. It still ended up being a lovely wedding, but I know my sister-in-law has never gotten over how she missed out on having her father walk her down the aisle because her “wicked stepmother” had to have things her way… on someone else’s special day. 10-14-08