Friday, March 8, 2013

Should I Attend the Wedding of a Spoiled Niece?

Dear Jocelyn,
My niece, whom I've always gotten along with, asked if our daughter and son would be their flower girl and ringbearer. Shortly afterward, she emailed a picture of a flower girl dress that was beautiful, but very poofy with layers of tulle. My daughter throws a fit with anything poofy or itchy. We had a year and a half before the wedding, so I commented that hopefully she will outgrow this issue. I also commented that the dress was gorgeous. My niece did not respond to emails or phone calls for 7 months. She finally called when she found out she was pregnant. Things have seemed fine since then. I found out today from my mom that she is not having our daughter as a flower girl. I'm assuming our son will be excluded as well. She said, "I want to pick out the flower girl dress." I had no such intentions to ruin that. I'm very sad and upset about this. We're 2 months away from the wedding, and I've wondered what was going on, but didn't want to ruffle my niece's feathers again by asking. I've cried off and on all day. I have 2 months to accept this, but is it appropriate to go to a wedding when this sort of thing has happened? I should add that my niece is very spoiled. It's always been her way or the highway. There's no talking to her. If I did go to the wedding, I'd go for my brother, but I'm not even sure I want to do it for him. Thank you for your advice.

Dear Upset,
My, what a delicate situation! This doesn't sound like the sort of thing that would normally even be an issue, but some people have the ability to make the smallest slight into a big deal. Your niece sounds like one of them.

You have two options:

1) Try to clear the air by talking to your niece. Ask her why she is not using your daughter as the flower girl anymore, and don't let her turn it around on you. If she tries to say that you said your daughter wouldn't wear the dress, correct her with what you did say. She might or might not change her mind.

2) Just forget about it and don't bring it up. Attend the wedding if you wish, but don't feel obliged to go.

If she is truly the type that cannot be reasoned with, option one won't work. However, option two will most likely lead to more hard feelings on her part.

Either way, try to remember that you are not responsible for the rudeness of others. Your niece is spoiled, and that is not your fault or responsibility. By your account, you did nothing wrong. She is about to enter into marriage, which is impossible to make work without sacrifice and some degree of humility. Start praying for her now that she will learn those lessons before her flaws lead to trouble in her marriage.

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