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I have a slew of stuff I could send about one of my relative's wedding but I'll refrain and just bring up an incident that happened at my own wedding. Everything went really well and it was simple and nice and everyone came up to me afterwards and told me how much fun they had had. (We had a small wedding, with a cozy reception afterwards). So everyone had a good time EXCEPT my DH's cousin (I'll call him "Joe"), who left the wedding early, taking his father (DH's uncle) with him, because he was so angry at our wedding.

Why was he so angry? First let me explain a bit of back story. Although my DH and I are non-practicing, his family is Jewish, and my family are Catholic. Because we wanted a ceremony that reflected our beliefs, we got married in a Unitarian church and wrote most of the text and added a couple of traditional things from both the Jewish and the Catholic ceremonies as a nod to both our families (the smashing the wine glass, and the unity candles, respectively). Neither my husband and I are Unitarians but we like their very inclusive beliefs and progressive attitudes, which is why we felt comfortable having the ceremony at this church. But essentially we were renting the space for the ceremony, and didn't really have any say over what went on at the church when we weren't there (as MOST people would realize).

For anyone who is not familiar with Unitarians, they are politically active and are very anti-war and also pro gay marriage. At this particular church, they had pamphlets in the pews about various upcoming events etc. Two pamphlets in particular enraged DH's cousin "Joe". Keep in mind that my own family, who are very conservative, and my mother's friend, a guest who is a fundamentalist Christian, were not offended, nor were any of my DH's family, who are all Jewish, offended. Just "Joe." The two pamphlets in question were one on a Palestinian peace rally (Joe is a Zionist) and the other was a pamphlet on gay marriage. Now, I had no idea the pamphlets were in the pews but even if I did, I can't tell a church to "viewpoint proof" their church before my guests arrive in case anybody sees something that might be different from their normal worldview. If they are that easily offended, they should stay home, in my opinion. One guest already did -- the fundamentalist's daughter -- because she felt it wasn't right for me to not get married in a Catholic church (never mind the fact that DH is not Catholic and has no intention of becoming Catholic), and she would have felt uncomfortable going to another church for a wedding (somehow I don't think Jesus would have done the same, but I digress.....).

Anyway, Joe went to the reception site with his uncle after the wedding, but only stayed for a maybe 20 minutes or half an hour, then left in a huff, taking his father with him. His elderly father had a legitimate excuse. His wife, who we had invited, was sick and so hadn't come, and he felt he should go home to be with her. That is perfectly understandable. However, Joe left, because he was angry at us, and then refused to talk to us after the wedding, except for one angry phone call to my husband, when we got back from honeymoon, to tell us off for being anti-Semitic and "pro gay" (I knew he had some issues prior to this -- he once sent me an email with a racial slur against Arab people in the subject header, and when I told him to please not send me racist emails, he got angry at me and told then FH something to the effect that I was anti-Semitic and pro-terrorism). So now he is angry with both of us. Never mind the fact that Joe is pretty much a hermit and has no friends and at 50 years of age or so he doesn't have any kind of girlfriend or someone in his life other than his father or mother. FH is the only person in the family who tries to include him in things and tries to hang out with him and was a good friend to him.

In the past year since we've been married, Joe has cut off all contact with us. DH's father died several months ago, and while Joe did show up to the funeral, he still ignored us. I pointedly went up to him and said "Hello Joe, how are you doing" to see if that would break the ice, and just chalk up to his past behavior as to his general lack of social grace, and he just sheepishly said "fine" but didn't continue the conversation and never offered his condolences to DH.

Several more months go by and DH wants to see if Joe will talk to him. I tell him it's up to him what he wants to do with his own family, but if it were me, I wouldn't bother since he never apologized or kept in touch with DH. But DH decides to contact Joe anyway, who then proceeds to berate him for hours on the phone over his treatment at the wedding and how we're either "for him or against him" and how he can't talk to anyone who threatens his way of life. Threatens????

So although DH says he'll call Joe some other time, when they hang up the phone, both he and I don't think we should bother as Joe obviously has some issues he needs to resolve. it's one thing to have different political beliefs (we had many different types of people at our wedding, with all different religious beliefs -- from pagans priestesses to fundamentalists -- all of whom got along), but to feel threatened and to cut people out of your life who have different viewpoints is excessive, in my opinion, especially over something that is supposed to bring people together, like a wedding.


My brother and sister-in-law defiantly had the guests from hell at their wedding reception.

My brother *J* and I had been estranged for a few years and the morning of his wedding had been forced by our mother and his fiancée *C* to sit down and discuss our issues. Come to find out that our step-siblings had been telling each of us different stories about things and building a huge rift between the two of us. We happily made up and were both looking forward to the wonderful union of him and his new wife.  The wedding itself went off flawlessly and was really a wonderful event.  The problems showed up at the reception.

The first guest from hell was no other than our stepmother. She didn't like the punch that was served or any of the choices of very good wines. She always drinks a really cheap jug wine and, "Your brother should know I don't drink that fancy stuff!! "  She and my father demanded that I leave the reception to go to the store to get her the kind of wine she likes. Remember that J and I had just made up after years of problems caused by HER kids!  J admitted afterwards that he was really mad when he saw my car drive off. He figured that our talk that morning had been all BS. Fortunately MOB had overheard everything and took J off to the side and explained it was not my choice or fault.  We have had a wonderful relationship since.

The second and more major group of guests from hell was actually J's co-workers.   They had gone to J beforehand and explained that as they did not have a lot of money the group of them wanted to stage a fundraising kidnapping.   Getting the other guests to fund their giftgiving. How creative! This is a tradition in their area and J & C were alright with this.  I suppose if it were a tradition in their area to jump off cliffs, J and C would be alright with that, too?  Note to self:  "J & C were alright with this." They explained that they would take C to our aunt's restaurant and hold her there for about 30 minutes while the token "ransom" was raised. They in turn would match the ransom as their gift. (This normally raises about $50 or so and nobody is expected to pitch in more than $1 ).  Well it didn't work out that way at all!!  

These kids are all in their very early 20s and thought this is fun to kidnap the boss's wife. And J, the groom and their boss, couldn't see that from a mile away? The time came for them to kidnap C and they did so. There was lots of laughing and jokes. Remember that this is a custom in their area so everyone was expecting this.  The "ransom note" was delivered and the collection taken up. My grandfather called over to the restaurant to let them know that the ransom had been collected and was told that the group had not shown up!  This is almost 20 minutes later and the restaurant is only 3 minutes away.

An hour passes, 2 hours pass. We are all REALLY worried that something has gone wrong. Our paternal grandmother lives in another state and our father's sister and her husband have a private plane that they had flown grandmother in on. The airport was about to close so they all three had to leave.  Mind you that the cake has not been cut yet, most of the pictures are not done yet. The "30 minutes" has now become almost 3 hours and then a police car shows up! 

What had actually happened was that the kids had taken her to one of their homes and locked her into a metal freight container that was in their backyard and served as a shed and went inside to watch a movie and get drunk! One of the kids had joked around about "spoiling" her for J and she was truly frightened for her life. But hey, J was "alright" with his knuckle dragging, snaggle toothed, pimply, juvenile employees kidnapping his bride.    This was a very hot summer day and she is still in her wedding gown. Fortunately the container had not sealed correctly and after about 2 hours she was able to get it open and get out.  She headed back towards town and the reception on foot when one of the local officers spotted her and knew that we were all looking for her. (Thank the gods for small towns and their wonderful police force!!)  By this time she was very ill from the heat and the stress and we women got her all cleaned up and had her lay down for a bit in the house with the AC on high. This totally ruined the rest of their reception and ended up ruining their honeymoon when she had a miscarriage that night of the child both her and J had been trying to conceive for almost 4 years.

The kids didn't even have the guts to show up at work and quit in a normal fashion or explain themselves. They simply wrote a note saying that they were sure that they were probably fired and slipped it into the mail slot at work.

J&C managed to have 3 wonderful little girls and are still very happily married and still very much in love after almost 10 years.


I'm sorry the bride had a terrifying, tiring experience that resulted in her miscarrying but as a wedding coordinator, I'd be freaking out at all the warning flags and would have been trying to dissuade anyone from doing this prank.  For the paltry sum of $50.00 more than the employees could afford to give, the bride and groom agreed to be willing participants in a stunt which further separates money from guests' wallets.  It wasn't worth it and ultimately they share the responsibility with their guests from hell.   

While planning our wedding my husband and I decided we would limit the number of "children" invited to our wedding.  We desperately wanted to keep cost down and felt it was only necessary to invite "immediate" family member's children (our siblings' children).  Several of our cousins have children and we were not sure how they would take the news that their children would not be invited to our wedding.  We started by passing the word on thru other family members so it would not come as a surprise to those cousins once they received the actual invitation excluding their children. 

On the invitations we wrote names of only the invited on the "inside" envelope (as suggested in all invitation guidelines).  We sent one to my second-cousin and her husband, excluding their daughter's name.  Well she sent their response card back noting THREE meals not two and writing a note inside stating that she, her husband, and their DAUGHTER were looking forward to attending the wedding!   I'm always one to follow etiquette so I thoroughly looked into how this ignorance should be handled and all information I could find suggested to simply ignore their rude behavior rather than confronting them and risking an argument between family members.  And sure enough, all three showed up to the wedding.   We certainly have nothing against this little girl, she's a joy, but she was not invited and this complete disregard (by her parents) for our wishes put us in an awkward position with our other cousins whose children were not invited and did not attend the wedding.  I'm sure those cousins had to be wondering why this little girl was at our wedding but their children were not permitted to be.


I attended my cousin's wedding a couple of month's before my own.  So we were both full into wedding planning and knew all about good wedding etiquette.  Her wedding was outdoors, and absolutely beautiful!  I attended with my fiancé, and we met up with my mother and brother.  My brother's old childhood friend had decided to come into town that weekend, and rather than turn him away, they brought this uninvited person to the wedding.  I told my mom that was very rude, and she really shouldn't have brought him at all.  She said it would be ok.  I never figured my mom was that out of touch, but that's not the worst of this story. 

The reception was held in a hall at the county fair grounds.  The town I'm from is mostly a farming community, and my cousin's family, and a lot of their friends know how to party.  It wasn't a sit down formal affair, and I was hoping that my brother's weird friend would get lost in the crowd.  I really hope my now husband and I were the only one's who had to witness his weirdness!   "Harry" is a bigger guy, and slightly lacking in common sense.  I've always thought he was a little off.  He spent most of the time that we were waiting to eat talking about his "girlfriend" and how great she is, and that he sings her songs and plays the guitar for her.  Yeah right.  People were now paying attention to him, I can't even fully describe how stupid he sounded.  

Then it was time to eat.  I lost count with how many times he went up for more food, more soda, more cake, etc...   It was unbelievable.  This was food that was prepared by the family.....and must I remind you he was UNINVITED?   Well, this kid has hyperactivity problems or something.  The sugar and caffeine was causing him to get a little jittery.  So he decides the best way to fix this problem is laps outside!  I'm serious!!!  I think he ran 4 or 5 laps before coming inside, breathing heavily and sweating everywhere.  I know we were embarrassed, as was my poor brother.  I don't think my mom ever had a clue as to how bad he was, even though we told her many times that day. 

The wedding and reception was wonderful, despite this terrible, uninvited guest.

And no, he was not invited to our wedding!  


 While in college I was asked by a friend (Bob) if I would go with him and his ex-girlfriend (Betty) to 2 weddings held in Ft. Worth (we were in Missouri at the time).  They had already purchased the tickets before breaking up, but were still friends.  Both had decided that adding another friend to the mix would be less uncomfortable for them both.   I thought I was doing a favor for my friends and how bad could it be?  Unfortunately, my friend didn’t mention the tension surrounding the 2 weddings.  Bob’s mom planned her wedding, and then Bob’s half-sister (Susan) planned hers for the same day.  Susan is older than Bob – Bob’s dad had an affair and she was conceived.  Bob’s parents eventually split and Bob’s dad married the mistress (Susan’s mom).  So the 2 halves of the families were warring that weekend.  So we went to Bob’s mom’s wedding, her reception, then Susan’s reception (much more fun, by the way).

Bob also didn’t mention to anyone in his family that he was no longer dating Betty!  His grandmother and mom kept making little snide comments.  This was a July wedding.  My dress for the rehearsal dinner was a tastefully floral navy with off-white sandals that matched the flowers in the dress.  At the rehearsal dinner, Bob’s grandma leaned over to Betty and said that she looked lovely and nudged her and said, loudly, “A lady never wears white shoes” and looked pointedly at me.  Bob’s sister cornered me in the restroom and asked why I was going after Bob when he was dating Betty.  I tried to explain to these people that I was friends with Bob and friends with Betty and I wasn’t dating him or trying to get him, but of course they love Bob and think he’s the greatest thing since sliced bread so they didn’t believe me. 

I’ve never been so happy to get home before.


Page Last Updated October 11, 2008