Fear of family feuds

Something New

You can pick your friends, but you can't pick your family as they say, and you can pick which friends to invite to your wedding, but you can't necessarily do the same with your family (as we all know how touchy and deeply engrained that issue is).

All families have issues, all of them, from age-old grudges to fresh drama to divorces and estranged family members. A family isn't a family without drama.

So when you unite two families (sometimes more) at a big fete like a wedding, many of those unresolved or lingering issues will unite under one roof for your one Big Day. People who shouldn't be around each other - or don't want to be around each other - have no choice but to be in close quarters with one another, and we can't forget the wonders that liquid courage and a well-stocked bar can do.

These concerns, which are valid and at times extremely stressful ones, often hijack a bride and groom's attention for months before and on their wedding day.

It's nerve-wracking wondering whether or not family members are going to get along. Is so-and-so going to get drunk and go up to so-and-so and start something? Is Uncle Bob going to pick a fight with Uncle Sam who hasn't spoken to him in five years? Or are your divorced parents going to behave and leave each other's new spouses alone?

The list goes on and on.

And you know what? It shouldn't. In fact, it should just stop completely, just for that one day, then everyone can get back to their bantering and drama while the bride and groom sit on a sunny patio in the morning drinking champagne mimosas.

It's complete garbage that any bride and groom should have to stress so much over other people's problems, actions or behavior on their own wedding day when they've been dealing with their own stress and wedding planning for months. Yet time and time again, family members can't put aside their drama for a few hours and put the 'happy' couple first. It's aggravating beyond belief.

Like a friend said once, "Nothing brings the snakes out of the grass like a wedding," and how true when it comes to family drama.

Frankly, it's not up to the bride and groom to play mediator or problem solver; they're busy enough planning the wedding, and really the most they should do is organize their seating chart so that people who shouldn't sit near each other don't.

And that's where the couple's responsibility stops.

Unless it's the ring bearer or flower girl, the majority of family members who attend weddings are adults, so is it too much to ask that they act like grownups for one day? Just one day.

So, if you're attending a family member's wedding this year, and find yourself seething over another guest who will be there, or are considering complaining to the frazzled bride about a certain person's RSVP, stop yourself and say, "It's their wedding. Let it go."

And if you can't, even for that one day, then maybe instead you should be saying to yourself, "Maybe I should stay home."

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