General Etiquette > Family and Children

No thanks Dad, I don't want to go to your third wedding

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I had breakfast with my Dad this morning, we are not very close. He was emotionally abusive to my mom during their 33 year marriage, and was a hoarder. My mom divorced him six months after she was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. When she was real bad, he would push her wheelchair into the wall and refuse to pick her up when she would stay in hospitals. He also takes a small pharmacy of drugs for mental illness and other health issues.

Today he told me he was getting married again in a month to a lady with eight kids and who is on government assistance. This is his third marriage. I personally have no desire to go, and would like to decline it. I've never met the lady, and my dad is pretty well off financially (he's worked for a very successful home improvement company for 35 years and currently works from home) so it sounds like to me he's getting played, but obviously I don't know the full situation.

Should I want to go? I just don't. Can I decline? I just started a new job and I am in grad school-I have a lot on my plate and I don't see any good in this. I'm fine with meeting her after the fact, but not at the wedding-a full church wedding and reception.

I don't have anything about whether you should go to the wedding. Any chance you could meet her before the weeding? That might help you make a decision.

However, I want to say a HUGE CONGRATS!!! to your mom for getting out of a horrible situation. I hope she has a happy life.

You say you and your dad are not close and he was abusive.  Sounds like you don't like him much (with good reason).

There is no law or rule that says you have to go to his wedding.  I can't imagine why you would want to.  Just don't go.

I chose to attend my dad's wedding (third, also) to a woman he'd known for less than three months; I was the only one of my three siblings to do so. The others have no regrets about not attending, and I am somewhat glad I attended as part of my miserably failed (haven't spoken to him in three years) "reconciliation plan" because I see it as a piece of the evidence that our relationship failed as a result of his actions, not as a result of my inaction.

The awkward mess of a wedding was a little entertaining to witness, in the way a rubbernecker enjoys a train wreck, but I'm not that type, so it was just awful.

So my advice is to do what feels right. You are under no obligation to attend or not attend. If he makes it an issue, remember that it's HIS issue, not yours.

(And just based on your disapproval of his treatment of others and your lack of ever having met this woman, I wouldn't bother in your shoes.)

I wouldn't go.  You don't know this woman and you don't have a good relationship with your dad (for a very good reason) so there isn't a whole lot of reason to go.  And if he pressures you to be a part of his 'family', don't give in to anything you don't want to.  This woman may be a gold digger, she may be just the thing he needs to straighten him out, but that is between them.


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