“Didn’t Invite Me Because My Husband And I ‘Are Never Available’”: Brother Doesn’t Involve Sis In Wedding Plans Even Though She’s Paying For It.

Siblings’ bonds are truly special. When you lose both your parents you have your sibling as the only family. There will be ups and downs but speaking your heart out to your brother/sister is very important. (This story was sent to us by Eloise).

Source: Reddit

I (F31) have a brother (M29) and he is getting married next year. We lost our Mum in 2012 and our Dad in 2016. We are each other’s only living relatives. I have a good job, I earn a lot of money (£150,000 per year). My brother also has a good job, but doesn’t earn anywhere. near as much (£35,000). We were raised to always look after each other and share. My partner and I are child free.

Over the years I have paid for my brother’s Masters degree, paid the down payment on his house (our parents rented, so there is no family home). I will also be paying for my future SIL (F26) and my brother to have future rounds of IVF. SIL works part-time and earns about 15k a year, her parents are not well off.

My brother asked if I could contribute to the cost of the wedding. I said I’d pay for it, as it is small with 100 guests, and set up a wedding account for them into which I put £25,000 which they both have access to.

SIL’s entire family are involved as bridesmaids and groomsmen. My husband and I are guests. Brother and SIL have been going around venues with her family, and I get emailed the costing if it’s selected.

I told my brother I don’t mind paying for the wedding but I feel really weird that everyone else is involved in the decision and I’m just involved with paying. Brother has said that I’m not our parents, I can’t replace our parents and that’s why I’m not involved. Why can’t I just do something nice without making him feel sh**. I feel like an a**hole for causing drama, but also feel taken advantage of.

This is in the UK, in Northern Ireland to be exact. 35k is a good salary. I don’t have student debt to pay off because I didn’t go to uni. I was in the military before becoming a commercial pilot. My brother’s salary will increase as at his company, he needed a master’s to progress beyond his current rung. SIL works part-time because she has a medical issue, she will never be able to work full-time because of this.

Related – it is unclear if this is impacting fertility. In NI you get one round of IVF on the NHS which they did. They paid for two more at 8k each. SIL family paid for another and stipulated they wouldn’t be able to afford to pay for a wedding if that was the case. Brother and SIL have been emotionally through the wringer with fertility issues, it isn’t a cynical attempt to get money. For all of y’all talking about adoption, there is some serious BS about SIL’s illness meaning they aren’t “attractive candidates”.

I am close with my brother but do pay for things we do together, he has really been there for me emotionally, especially during some personal problems I experienced just before and after I left the military, future SIL was too. They didn’t plan the engagement party, SIL family did and they didn’t invite me because my husband and I “are never available”, we just have jobs that have us moving around a lot.

SIL and brother were horrified (no one told them we hadn’t been invited, they assumed we just didn’t show up) but that was resolved and we had a lovely meal together instead. My husband is supportive of our financial assistance, we are also helping his sister with her college costs (though why she had to go to the US when we have university educations that don’t cost an arm and a leg right here is beyond me – also any of you who have paid your way through an American degree – I salute you).

I still don’t know what to do, but I do think maybe I’m not setting him up for success as I hoped, and also that I do deserve some recognition even if it’s just privately from him.

This whole thing got really big, I spoke to my brother and SIL, and SIL was saying she’d planned this with her brothers and sisters since she was a little girl, her family knew her and what she wanted and traditionally weddings are about the bride and the bride’s family are heavily involved. I said that’s fine, but traditionally the bride’s family also pay and they are more than welcome to if tradition is so important. I said traditionally the groom’s family is also involved.

She said I was shaming her family for not being well off. I said that wasn’t my intention, and that my brother’s wedding is a big deal for my brother too and for me as his only family, and tbh we’ve had a sh** time of it so a nice occasion would be good. She said she understands that, but we don’t have the same taste and she didn’t want to feel pressured into changing anything she had planned.

I said I wouldn’t ask her to change anything I’d just like to come with so I didn’t feel like an ATM. As you can tell this conversation isn’t going anywhere. I said I’d like to give a speech at the reception in lieu of my Dad to welcome her to the family and she said “well my dad will be welcoming Steven to our family so that won’t be necessary. SIL isn’t interested in seeing me as, or treating me like family. This is clear.

So then. SIL’s mother calls me and is like, oh hey we were thinking you and your husband would like to help us send them on honeymoon, I think it would be nice if it came from both sides. I LOST it. I said did she not think me PAYING for THE ENTIRE WEDDING was enough. She said she had no idea that I was paying, she just assumed it was my brother. Which let’s be clear here, makes NO sense. Where they gonna find 25k lying around when they’ve been saving for each round of IVF. So at this point I’m raging, I mean wine in my pyjamas raging.

Call brother. Told him the situation. Says he didn’t know they hadn’t been told I was paying. I was like isn’t that just the default assumption at this point? Bank of Sister is paying. He said he appreciated everything I’ve done for him, and that SIL and SIL family just don’t realize how much I’ve done and continue to do. He says he will sort it.

Brother smooths things over and asks me how I would like to be involved. I said in all honesty the fact that it’s taken several rows and a thread on Reddit for him to realise (this got pretty big, there were YouTube videos!) that I wasn’t being treated with respect is hurtful and it should not take this level of drama to be included in my only family members wedding.

I said I would just attend as a guest. They can have SIL dream wedding, but that I will be taking a step back in general. I said I love him, I will always support him, I’ll continue to support with the IVF, but otherwise my financial assistance is done. Education, house, wedding. It’s over to them now.

Brother said that’s ok with him, and asked if stepping back means we won’t see each other as much. I said no, I’m still his sister, Of course we will, but this has really upset me and left me feeling like YOU and SIL don’t value our relationship. This went on for a while. I said I’m not trying to ruin his wedding, I’m not going NC, I’m just going to be a sister from now on, and stop trying to do what I think mum and dad would have done if they had the chance.

We got into it about the pressure and obligations I’ve felt since they passed. All very promising. I think I’m going to talk to a counsellor about all of this. Lots of it is unprocessed grief and an unreasonable thought in my mind that if my brother doesn’t want for anything then he won’t be sad and won’t feel the absence of our parents as much. We both agree this is for the best for us both.

How would you feel in that situation?


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