Author Topic: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date  (Read 18314 times)

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kitchcat

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Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« on: February 28, 2013, 11:30:54 AM »
In today's Dear Prudence there is a letter (the first one on the second page) that really made me wonder.

LW and her DH were recently married on May 11th. DH's brother has recently got engaged. They announce they'll be having their engagement party on May 11th this year and be married on May 11th the following year. LW is secretly upset that their having their party on their wedding anniversary.

Prudie's advice is basically to get over it and says it's "absurd" to skip the events because LW and her DH need to "exchange gifts in private."

I don't know about you, but I'd be upset too unless the date was of some significance to the family as a whole. What do you think?
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ScubaGirl

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #1 on: February 28, 2013, 11:32:23 AM »
I agreed with Prudence.  Maybe I'm just not as sentimental (?) as others. 

zyrs

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2013, 11:38:29 AM »
While I am not very sentimental, I do notice that this means the LW and husband will need to make their second anniversary all about husband's brothers wedding.

sparksals

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #3 on: February 28, 2013, 11:38:50 AM »
I am on my phone and the link desn't work.  There are some additional characters in the link.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 11:48:37 AM by sparksals »

Aeris

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #4 on: February 28, 2013, 11:39:31 AM »
I think it's silly to be upset by it, and I think it's petty and unreasonable to skip out on your own sibling's wedding over something like this. It's not an etiquette violation, but I'd think it was a pretty selfish way to behave, personally.

Perhaps that date has even more significance for the brother and his fiancee than for the LW and her DH. Perhaps they had always been planning on getting married on that date, if they did decide to get married, and when the LW and her DH took the exact same date THEY were surprised. Or perhaps the venue of their dreams was only available on May 11 during the period they wanted to marry, so they decided to make a thing of it. (If you want to be married on a weekend in the spring, there's only so many of those.)

Sometimes important things happen in the lives of those around us on dates like our anniversaries, our birthdays, etc. If we care about those people, we'll be willing to celebrate our birthday/anniversary the day before, or heck even the weekend before, in order to participate in the special event. If we don't care about the people in question that much, then it doesn't really matter.

I tend to be of the belief that current events trump anniversaries of past events. If everyone's anniversary/date of death/birthday/etc were off limits for everyone in the social circle, there would quickly be no dates left to do new things on.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 11:42:27 AM by Aeris »

Kaypeep

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #5 on: February 28, 2013, 11:39:49 AM »
I think Prudie is right.  It's not a significant date to the whole family, it's only significant to the couple.  Should family plan their conceptions accordingly so that cousins don't have to share the spotlight on their birthdays, too? 



audrey1962

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #6 on: February 28, 2013, 11:41:25 AM »
I wouldn't be upset by it.

MorgnsGrl

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #7 on: February 28, 2013, 11:42:10 AM »
I think it's unrealistic to think that one "owns" a date like a birthday or anniversary. You wouldn't expect no one to ever get married on your wedding anniversary, so why would you think you could prohibit a close relative from doing so?

FlyingBaconMouse

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #8 on: February 28, 2013, 11:43:12 AM »
Ideally, this would be a setup for maybe some minor inconvenience around the wedding, followed by a settling-down period where it no longer matters. And it's possible that I'm biased by years of my anniversary being the only time I got to travel somewhere that wasn't my parents' or my ILs' house...

However, maybe I've been reading this forum too long, but I could easily imagine a future post about a BIL and SIL who have lots of anniversary parties but never acknowledge the LW and her husband's same-date anniversary.  :(  I guess I agree with Prudie that it doesn't have to be a big problem, but I'd be keeping a close eye on those two for a while after that.
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NyaChan

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #9 on: February 28, 2013, 11:44:46 AM »
I don't think the Brother should have to keep their wedding anniversary in mind, but I also don't think that it is ridiculous of the couple to want to skip the engagement party - it is their first wedding anniversary and I think there are a lot of people who set store in that event and want to spend the evening together.  The second anniversary which lands on the wedding - though I understand their frustration, it isn't as big of a deal and they should go.

ETA:  Basically, I think Prudence was unnecessarily harsh to the LW and I disagree with her in part.
« Last Edit: February 28, 2013, 11:47:26 AM by NyaChan »

MindsEye

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #10 on: February 28, 2013, 11:45:05 AM »
I disagree with Prudence.

I would be upset.  I don't know about the wedding, but I would certainly skip the engagement party.

I also wonder what else there is to the backstory.  I admit that my knee-jerk reaction is to assume that there is a long history of the brother one-upping the husband and always having to be the center of attention.  Because, really... 365 days in the year and you just happened to pick the one that is your brother's wedding date?  And to plan a major all-about-you party on your brother's first anniversary?  Really?  It sets my hinky-meter off.

Aeris

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #11 on: February 28, 2013, 11:45:30 AM »
However, maybe I've been reading this forum too long, but I could easily imagine a future post about a BIL and SIL who have lots of anniversary parties but never acknowledge the LW and her husband's same-date anniversary.  :(  I guess I agree with Prudie that it doesn't have to be a big problem, but I'd be keeping a close eye on those two for a while after that.

I think this is taking it way too far down the road of 'what ifs'. There's no indication that the BIL and fiancee are terrible selfish people that want to make the universe all about them. It's possible, in the same way that *anything* is possible.

Deetee

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #12 on: February 28, 2013, 11:46:09 AM »
I am totally with Prudence.
Also there are a ridiculous number of factors that go into picking a date that works that an anniversary seems really minor. ( Also I don't know anyone else's anniversary date and I don't expect anyone to remember mine except my husband's parents as we married on his birthday)

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Judah

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #13 on: February 28, 2013, 11:46:26 AM »
I think it's unrealistic to think that one "owns" a date like a birthday or anniversary. You wouldn't expect no one to ever get married on your wedding anniversary, so why would you think you could prohibit a close relative from doing so?

I agree. I think this is a silly thing to be upset about.
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WillyNilly

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Re: Dear Prudence: sibling "stealing" wedding date
« Reply #14 on: February 28, 2013, 11:46:35 AM »
I understand the LW's stance to not attend the engagement party on their first anniversary.  Perhaps after years the date becomes less important, but the first is still special for many people. And its just my opinion but I think its tacky to have an engagement party months after announcing one's engagement.  Engagement parties IMHO should be small celebrations held very very soon after the actual engagement takes place, not large affairs months later.

As for the wedding date I do understand them being privately miffed.  But for me the bigger hassle would be a Sunday wedding (May 11 2014 is a Sunday) as unless its brunch reception or very small quick wedding, I find Sunday's to be an exhausting day for a big to-do.