Dear Wedding Diplomat: My fiancé and his family want me to wear his great grandmother’s dress—but I hate it
Dear Wedding Diplomat,
My fiancé’s mother and grandmother are pressuring me to wear his great grandmother’s dress from 1915, which has been worn by three generations of brides. This dress is as frumpy as a Mormon frock, with a chin-skimming neck and long sleeves that button up to the elbows. I can’t imagine walking down the aisle in it. When I suggested trying on new dresses, his mom nearly broke into tears and said I would be destroying a century-long tradition. To make matters worse, my fiancé agrees with her. What should I do?
—Dressed Down, Bayview
You’ll be making dozens of compromises as you plan this wedding. Let your future in-laws meddle with the menu, the centrepieces, the soundtrack—but not the dress. It’s the one thing that should be all yours. You want to feel radiant on the big day, not like a walking daguerreotype. Tell them you’re very honoured to be joining their line of ladies, but that the dress just isn’t your style. Then, quickly follow up with ways to include it in the ceremony. You could display it in the foyer, along with photos from their weddings. Or, if they don’t mind you cutting up the dress (something tells me they would), you could offer to incorporate some of the fabric into your gown or veil. And if all else fails, you could always wear it for the first dance at the reception. All brides love a costume change.
6 thoughts on “Dear Wedding Diplomat: My fiancé and his family want me to wear his great grandmother’s dress—but I hate it”
My advice? Run away. Fast. If his family is meddling about your OWN wedding dress (something you have probably dreamed about forever) and making you feel guilty about it, it does not bode well for your marriage (crazy in-laws). And the fact that your fiance is not taking your side is a HUGE red flag.
How about you cut all ties with your fiance and his family, before you get married? Otherwise, get used to giving in to all their ridiculous and selfish demands for the rest of your life.
unless his family is paying in full for your wedding, tell them where to shove their tradition. Seems like a bad start to a life together. Enjoy your pending nuptials and miserable life succumbing to the demands of your borderline insane in-laws!
Conflict with the family/in-laws is one of the top things that married couples fight about (along with finances, sex, etc.) So, use this as an opportunity to tackle this challenge as a team. Marriage is about compromise. Discuss it with your future spouse and determine what a suitable compromise might be.
This is a bad sign. If you are willing to do as his family pleases all your life, then by all means go ahead but if this is the case, I would run.
Are you ready for this for the rest of your life? If this is an issue now, better discuss this.
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