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Scarlett

Ugh help

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So my almost 19 year old is questioning my decision. 

Would  you attend the wedding of a couple who you have not felt good about? Is your attendance approval and support?

where is your line?

Edited by Scarlett

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Goodness no. I’d just politely rsvp that I can’t attend and be done with it.  Going to a wedding I don’t want to go to isn’t good for anyone - it’s expense the bride and groom don’t need to pay and time I don’t need to waste.

The exception? Immediate family - my children, my siblings.  I would suck it up with a smile for them, out of love.  Otherwise, it has to be a wedding I am eager to attend or it’s a no.

Edited by Arctic Mama
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I am halfway between the two previous responses.  

It is so very very messy.  The girl is a year younger than my son and at one time so madly in love with him I was sure they would eventually marry. Then she met a ‘man’ 10 years older than her and suddenly they are dating and then quickly engaged.  So she is 17...almost 18 but her parents will have to sign...I do not agree with this match in the slightest.  Bit it is not immoral or illegal so I am hesitant to boycott it. 

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It would depend on what you mean by “not felt good about.”

Oops — never mind! You were explaining while I was posting.

Edited by Catwoman

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Oh that situation.  I wouldn’t go; does your son want to go?  I’d let him if he does, he’s an adult.  Or if you want to go and he doesn’t, then I’d say you can attend and he can stay home.  

Edited by Arctic Mama
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2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

I am halfway between the two previous responses.  

It is so very very messy.  The girl is a year younger than my son and at one time so madly in love with him I was sure they would eventually marry. Then she met a ‘man’ 10 years older than her and suddenly they are dating and then quickly engaged.  So she is 17...almost 18 but her parents will have to sign...I do not agree with this match in the slightest.  Bit it is not immoral or illegal so I am hesitant to boycott it. 

 

It sounds almost like you wish she was still interested in your son. 

Are you sure that isn’t coloring your view of the couple’s relationship?

 

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People don’t attend weddings for lots of reasons. If you’re not comfortable, I wouldn’t attend. But I wouldn’t share with anyone IRL that you are “boycotting” the wedding.

 

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I feel like I probably would in that case.  While I’d be uncomfortable with the situation it’s not so outrightly morally objectionable that I could justify a boycott. And given the past history not going could look like sour grapes.  I can understand your sons feelings but I think you still need to go.

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2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

The girl is 17.  He is 26. Almost 27.  He has no home for her....no real,way to suppor her. 

 

Are the girl’s parents okay with the relationship? Are you sure he can’t support her? 

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2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

The girl is 17.  He is 26. Almost 27.  He has no home for her....no real,way to suppor her. 

What parents in their right minds would sign off on this? If she’s almost 18, why wouldn’t they at least wait and let her take full responsibility for the decision?

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Is this the one who wasn’t close to her mom and talked to you? If it is, go.  She may need to have help with this marriage ( I am thinking could need to escape from abuse) and she may remember that you that you were there.  You don’t have to support the marriage but just be a face she remembers and could get help from. 

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If you don't want to go, then don't go.

This is sort of a general rule for me--If something is morally wrong,I won't participate. That's my line. But if I am uncomfortable, it's not enough for me to say no. I try to think, WHAT IS THE KIND THING TO DO. If it's kinder for me to go, then I go. Sometimes I have to go places or do things that my husband is doing. They are uncomfortable for me, but I do them most times, because it is just a preference, and it is kind to him for me to participate. He, of course, wouldn't ask me to support something I found morally wrong (he shares most of my morals and convictions and so probably wouldn't be involved in anything that I found objectionable anyway). 

So if you are just uncomfortable but you feel obligated, then go. It doesn't seem that hard a choice in this case, though, because you plainly don't want to. You will be bringing negativity to a space that should be all positive. Unless you are one hell of an actress, it will show that you don't want to be there. That is perfectly ok, to not go. 

 

ETA--Yeah, that was all over the place. LOL--What I mean is, if you are just a bit uncomfy, but think it kind to go, then go. If it is really bothering you and you couldn't help but be negative, either in your speech or your demeanor, then it's kinder not to go. Seems like, I wouldn't go, in your case. 

Edited by Chris in VA
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I think my thoughts on things like that have changed a bit over the years.  I didn't see your other thread, so I may be missing information.  But, unless something is terribly wrong -- such as, you know he is already abusing her, or you know he has a secret wife somewhere else, I wouldn't be able to support the marriage at all and therefore only extreme circumstances would get me there.  However, I'd probably be honest with the young lady and send her a card and let her know why I wasn't there, and that I was concerned about her and she could call me if she ever needed help.

But, if it's mostly thinking that the whole thing feels a little weird and awkward and you wonder about his intentions but so far everything seems okay, then I'd probably think, "How can I best show her that I care?" and, then I'd probably come to the conclusion that it would be to be there to support her.

On the other hand, if neither of them really liked you and you didn't care for them much either, and you were only invited because her mother invited you, then I'd probably come up with an excuse to not attend.

 

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I think I'd go, and here's why:  The wedding is likely to happen whether you are there or not, and I don't think that attending a wedding necessarily implies approval. At this point, she might not care whether you approve or not, but attending leaves the door open for you to be a support in the future. Shared experiences lay the foundation for relationships, imo and she might need you somewhere down the road. 

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1 minute ago, mom@shiloh said:

I think I'd go, and here's why:  The wedding is likely to happen whether you are there or not, and I don't think that attending a wedding necessarily implies approval. At this point, she might not care whether you approve or not, but attending leaves the door open for you to be a support in the future. Shared experiences lay the foundation for relationships, imo and she might need you somewhere down the road. 


This is my line of thinking.  I'd be there, I'd let the bride know that if she ever needs anything she can call me, but I would frame my response to the invitation as "I am doing what I need to so I can support her as a person and be there for her."

 

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I understand the disapproval of the match. If that were the only issue, I might go anyway, to support the bride, even though you don't support the union.

However, it seems that your son is having feelings about this, one way or the other, and that she was a potential spouse for him in the recent past (whether or not they were actually dating, the feelings were there). If it will be painful for your son to go to the wedding of someone who is essentially his ex-girlfriend, I would suggest honoring your son's feelings and declining the invitation.

ETA: If I remember correctly, she was never your son's official girlfriend. But the dynamics can still be sticky and painful.

Edited by Storygirl
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I guess I am not understanding the relationship with the bride. Why would you be invited to the wedding of your son's former girlfriend?  Do/did you have a particularly close relationship before they broke up?

In general though, I think people should go to weddings they want to go to. There's no obligation and not going to a wedding is not boycotting it. (Family weddings excepted here.)  

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I would go.  You have had a good relationship with her, so not going may feel like a rejection,  not of her marriage,  but of her.  She is going to do this, and she needs to know people care about her.  If this goes badly, feeling isolated would be the worst thing for her.

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She absolutely was not his girlfriend.  She did have feelings for him and possibly he for her, but they were like 14 and 15 and I don’t believe that is the reason at all that my son doesn’t want to go.  He believes the groom is creepy for wanting to marry such a young girl.  And he believes the groom is lazy and has no job skills and therefore shouldn’t be getting married.  He is not alone in those feelings.  Most of his friends feel the same way.  And honestly there is wide spread disapproval of it all. To the point I worry that many people will not go.  

I don’t think he is creepy.  I think he is majorly immature.  I believe they, including the parents who are allowing a minor to marry, get to make their own decisions and my approval is not required.  I want to be peaceable and kind.  

My son is very much a black and white thinker.  I told him if he doesn’t want to go, don’t go.  But that this hard nosed thinking won’t serve him well in life.  

I am going.  And I think I can convince my husband to go.  

I just needed a reality check because my son acts like I am doing something wrong.  

 

Thanks all. 

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27 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

I don’t think he is creepy.  I think he is majorly immature.  I believe they, including the parents who are allowing a minor to marry, get to make their own decisions and my approval is not required.  I want to be peaceable and kind.  

My son is very much a black and white thinker.  I told him if he doesn’t want to go, don’t go.  But that this hard nosed thinking won’t serve him well in life.  

I am going.  And I think I can convince my husband to go.  

I just needed a reality check because my son acts like I am doing something wrong.  

 

Thanks all. 

Many years ago, someone I love got engaged to a truly horrible person who displayed behavior around me that made me fear for the health and safety of my loved one. I asked the loved one’s mother how she could accept the horrible person in her child’s life. Editing to remove gender, she said, “This is my child. If I close my door, who else can my child turn to?”

When my loved one broke off the relationship, we were there to offer love and protection, both of which were needed when the horrible person’s depravity was exposed.

You’re keeping the door open. That is so important and will be remembered.

 

Edited by ErinE
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10 hours ago, Scarlett said:

So my almost 19 year old is questioning my decision. 

Would  you attend the wedding of a couple who you have not felt good about? Is your attendance approval and support?

where is your line?

 

23 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

She absolutely was not his girlfriend.  She did have feelings for him and possibly he for her, but they were like 14 and 15 and I don’t believe that is the reason at all that my son doesn’t want to go.  He believes the groom is creepy for wanting to marry such a young girl.  And he believes the groom is lazy and has no job skills and therefore shouldn’t be getting married.  He is not alone in those feelings.  Most of his friends feel the same way.  And honestly there is wide spread disapproval of it all. To the point I worry that many people will not go.  

I don’t think he is creepy.  I think he is majorly immature.  I believe they, including the parents who are allowing a minor to marry, get to make their own decisions and my approval is not required.  I want to be peaceable and kind.  

My son is very much a black and white thinker.  I told him if he doesn’t want to go, don’t go.  But that this hard nosed thinking won’t serve him well in life.  

I am going.  And I think I can convince my husband to go.  

I just needed a reality check because my son acts like I am doing something wrong.  

 

Thanks all. 

 

These 2 posts don't seem to match.  You already have decided to go, so why are you asking if you should go?  

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As she is not family and you are meh on the event, you should not feel obligated to go.  I would go if my absence would be noticed in a way that would affect the festivities (and if it was convenient for me to attend).  But it doesn't sound like that's the case here.

As for the marriage, I think it would help you if you talked yourself into accepting it and wishing them the best.

ETA:  Just realized it is your son who doesn't want you to go.  Well, it isn't up to him.  He himself does not need to go, whether you go or not.  You want to show love to the bride - there is nothing wrong with that at all.

Edited by SKL
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38 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

She absolutely was not his girlfriend.  She did have feelings for him and possibly he for her, but they were like 14 and 15 and I don’t believe that is the reason at all that my son doesn’t want to go.  He believes the groom is creepy for wanting to marry such a young girl.  And he believes the groom is lazy and has no job skills and therefore shouldn’t be getting married.  He is not alone in those feelings.  Most of his friends feel the same way.  And honestly there is wide spread disapproval of it all. To the point I worry that many people will not go.  

I don’t think he is creepy.  I think he is majorly immature.  I believe they, including the parents who are allowing a minor to marry, get to make their own decisions and my approval is not required.  I want to be peaceable and kind.  

My son is very much a black and white thinker.  I told him if he doesn’t want to go, don’t go.  But that this hard nosed thinking won’t serve him well in life.  

I am going.  And I think I can convince my husband to go.  

I just needed a reality check because my son acts like I am doing something wrong.  

 

Thanks all. 

OK, sorry for misunderstanding about your son's relationship with her.

I guess my question still is, who is this young woman to you that it matters that general disapproval of the marriage will lead many people not to attend?  I suspect I'm missing some backstory here that others know which is why I'm baffled.  If you and she were/are particularly close and you want to support her, then, go.   

I don't know why you are critical of your son's way of thinking about this though.  You and he disagree, sure. But his way of thinking is not necessarily wrong and yours right.

Edited by marbel
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This reminds me of when I was young and some acquaintances got pregnant in their mid-teens.  My mom was the first person to buy them lovely things for their babies.  Why?  Because they would need the things, and more importantly, they needed to feel like they and their baby were loved despite the circumstances.  It's not like you can undo what was done.  Best to make the best of it.

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Inviting your ex’s mother to your wedding is a little weird. Going to a teen wedding for your child’s ex-girlfriend is also a little odd especially when your son has objections. Your presence could add another layer of awkwardness to an already strange situation. If this were a peer friend of yours, or even a relative, I’d probably advise going to support the friendship. In this instance I’d send regrets and maybe a gift. 

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12 minutes ago, KungFuPanda said:

Inviting your ex’s mother to your wedding is a little weird. Going to a teen wedding for your child’s ex-girlfriend is also a little odd especially when your son has objections. Your presence could add another layer of awkwardness to an already strange situation. If this were a peer friend of yours, or even a relative, I’d probably advise going to support the friendship. In this instance I’d send regrets and maybe a gift. 

Maybe in her religion everyone in the local religious community is invited? I’m just guessing that this is why everyone is discussing this and has an opinion. 

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I don't have a super strong opinion - like, I don't think you're wrong no matter what you do - but I think in the case of a minor getting married, I wouldn't personally.

However, I'd absolutely let my teenage kids make their own decisions. And I would feel fine about a "I have another commitment that day" white lie for them to tell if they chose to or for them to say that I just didn't feel comfortable with it but wished them the best.

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1 hour ago, Scarlett said:

She absolutely was not his girlfriend.  She did have feelings for him and possibly he for her, but they were like 14 and 15 and I don’t believe that is the reason at all that my son doesn’t want to go.  He believes the groom is creepy for wanting to marry such a young girl.  And he believes the groom is lazy and has no job skills and therefore shouldn’t be getting married.  He is not alone in those feelings.  Most of his friends feel the same way.  And honestly there is wide spread disapproval of it all. To the point I worry that many people will not go.  

I don’t think he is creepy.  I think he is majorly immature.  I believe they, including the parents who are allowing a minor to marry, get to make their own decisions and my approval is not required.  I want to be peaceable and kind.  

My son is very much a black and white thinker.  I told him if he doesn’t want to go, don’t go.  But that this hard nosed thinking won’t serve him well in life.  

I am going.  And I think I can convince my husband to go.  

I just needed a reality check because my son acts like I am doing something wrong.  

 

Thanks all. 

 

It sounds like your son still has feelings for this girl, whether he wants to admit it or not, because he has awfully strong objections to her relationship. It sounds like a lot more than just a friend disapproving of another friend’s choices.

Unless you are somehow still exceptionally close to this girl, I’m not sure why you wouldn’t stay home and respect your son's feelings rather than go to the wedding. Do you anticipate having a close relationship with the girl and her new husband in the future? 

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I don't understand what the relationship was between her and your ds. You say they were 14 & 15 and she was absolutely not his girlfriend, but you were sure they would eventually marry??

It sounds like there is a lot of history and emotion wrapped up in this situation.

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I wouldn’t go unless I felt I could be nothing but supportive and happy for the couple on their wedding day. But having said that, since you want to go, you should go.

Your adult son is free to voice his opinion to you once -but you’re an adult and can make your own decisions. You don’t need your son to question your judgement, just as you won’t be badgering him to change his mind.  Our adult kids sometimes disagree with our choices, and sometimes we disagree with theirs. I think it’s healthy to have open communication but not healthy to be overly involved telling each other what to do.  Sometimes it’s a fine line. But not in this case. 

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I think you and your son should each do as you wish independently, and that you each should be supportive about the other while having different feelings or different decision about the marriage or whether or not to attend the wedding.  

You can’t force your son to be non-critical of your decision, but you can explain it and model support and non criticism of his different approach.

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The girl is not his ex. And I don’t believe he has romantic feelings for her. He feels exactly the same way about another couple (underage girl, mid 20s man). He thinks it is sick and that the men are pedophiles) both of these girls had young girl crushes on my son...I don’t remember saying I thought they would get married...but shrug—-I think it could have eventually happened—either girl— but that is not the issue here. 

We are all family friends. We have all been invited to the first wedding... not sure about the other one. 

I know my sons can make their own decisions. I have no problem with that. I just had a momentary question as to whether I was going to be supporting the marriage and would that be wrong. I am better now. 🙂 

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4 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

The girl is not his ex. And I don’t believe he has romantic feelings for her. He feels exactly the same way about another couple (underage girl, mid 20s man). He thinks it is sick and that the men are pedophiles) both of these girls had young girl crushes on my son...I don’t remember saying I thought they would get married...but shrug—-I think it could have eventually happened—either girl— but that is not the issue here. 

We are all family friends. We have all been invited to the first wedding... not sure about the other one. 

I know my sons can make their own decisions. I have no problem with that. I just had a momentary question as to whether I was going to be supporting the marriage and would that be wrong. I am better now. 🙂 

I thinks it’s definitely appropriate to draw boundaries and tell him “you’re an adult and your opinion on this is valid.  I’m going for me and my own feelings on the matter, to support ______.  You can choose not to go on the same grounds, as your own person with your own viewpoint.  It’s okay for us to make different choices about how we interact with and support this couple.  Really.”

 

Drive that point home ad nauseum.  His discomfort or disapprove shouldn’t control what another adult does, even his own mother, at this stage of his life.  There are times where showing solidarity is appropriate but it doesn’t sound like this rises to that level.

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2 minutes ago, Arctic Mama said:

I thinks it’s definitely appropriate to draw boundaries and tell him “you’re an adult and your opinion on this is valid.  I’m going for me and my own feelings on the matter, to support ______.  You can choose not to go on the same grounds, as your own person with your own viewpoint.  It’s okay for us to make different choices about how we interact with and support this couple.  Really.”

 

Drive that point home ad nauseum.  His discomfort or disapprove shouldn’t control what another adult does, even his own mother, at this stage of his life.  There are times where showing solidarity is appropriate but it doesn’t sound like this rises to that level.

Yes I agree. I gave says it a dozen times and will need to keep saying it. 

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I go to weddings in order to celebrate and give best wishes to the couple, not to express approval, so I'd definitely go. 

If the wedding is happening, I think it's a bit mean spirited of the church community to have an obviously large number of people not attend. What does that accomplish? Is she going to peek in the church and decide to leave him at the altar because attendance is scanty? No, she will still get married, but she'll probably feel a bit abandoned and hurt on her wedding day, which is so sad to me. Like another poster said, she will probably also feel like she can't go to any of those people for help or support when she needs it. 

2 hours ago, KungFuPanda said:

Inviting your ex’s mother to your wedding is a little weird. Going to a teen wedding for your child’s ex-girlfriend is also a little odd especially when your son has objections. Your presence could add another layer of awkwardness to an already strange situation. If this were a peer friend of yours, or even a relative, I’d probably advise going to support the friendship. In this instance I’d send regrets and maybe a gift. 

 

It's not her son's ex-girlfriend. Even if it was, I'm not ditching the wedding of a family friend because my kid went out with them at some point. And I don't think it's healthy for my young adult children to have that level of control over my decisions or my social life. They decide if they want to go, I decide if I want to go. Also, weddings would have much smaller attendance in general if this were a rule of thumb! Most weddings I've been to have plenty of guests who have dated the bride or groom in the past, lol. 

The invitation is in the context of being family friends and also being part of the same larger community/social circle. The young lady is not inviting someone she knows only as a consequence of having liked the son. 

Edited by katilac
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I agree that it's weird to give permission to a 17 year old to marry.  She should just wait until she's 18 because marriage is for adults even though our laws are woefully behind. If your mommy and daddy have to sign for you to get married, you're not old enough to get married. Yes, child marriage IS immoral in my book for all the same moral reasons we don't allow minors to enter into legally binding contracts, and hopefully it will be illegal in the US if we ever get enough sensible lawmakers in office.

Adults make their own individual decisions.  If one wants to attend and the other doesn't, shrug.  To each his own on that.

As a bride I certainly wouldn't want someone to attend my wedding if they were creeped out by it or opposed to it in any way.  What's the point of going if you're upset by it? What is anyone getting out of that?  I don't think society benefits when people feel obligated to go for the sake of a public show. Society is always better off when people feel free to decline for whatever reason.

I'm not convinced the bride is at risk for being socially isolated and stuck in a bad marriage if Scarlett, someone not close to her, declines the invitation.  If this were someone closer, then maybe.

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3 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

I agree that it's weird to give permission to a 17 year old to marry.  She should just wait until she's 18 because marriage is for adults even though our laws are woefully behind. If your mommy and daddy have to sign for you to get married, you're not old enough to get married.  

<snip>

I'm not convinced the bride is at risk for being socially isolated and stuck in a bad marriage if Scarlett, someone not close to her, declines the invitation.  If this were someone closer, then maybe.

 

The statistics for minors getting married in America are just appalling. 

Why do you think Scarlett is not close to her? Unless I missed it, she didn't say that. They are family friends and the girl has been mentioned in many other threads. I get the feeling that they are certainly close enough that the bride would notice if she didn't attend the wedding, but Scarlett can correct me if I'm wrong. 

I'm not convinced the bride will be stuck in a bad marriage if Scarlett does not attend, but I am convinced that she will be sad and hurt if a noticeable percentage of her guests decline to show (which Scarlett said is a definite possibility). What are people trying to prove? They can't change it, why not go and give best wishes? 

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2 minutes ago, katilac said:

 

The statistics for minors getting married in America are just appalling. 

Why do you think Scarlett is not close to her? Unless I missed it, she didn't say that. They are family friends and the girl has been mentioned in many other threads. I get the feeling that they are certainly close enough that the bride would notice if she didn't attend the wedding, but Scarlett can correct me if I'm wrong. 

I'm not convinced the bride will be stuck in a bad marriage if Scarlett does not attend, but I am convinced that she will be sad and hurt if a noticeable percentage of her guests decline to show (which Scarlett said is a definite possibility). What are people trying to prove? They can't change it, why not go and give best wishes? 

Because she didn't explain any close relationship, which would be a relevant thing to mention in this discussion.
Maybe if people stopped showing up to morally objectionable events that put girls in bad legal positions, clueless people would actually think twice about signing for their daughters rather and saying, "Honey, marriage is for adults.  When you're an adult you can choose your own spouse.  There's no reason in this day in age for a minor child to get married."

We whine that there are social circles where this happens, but we're not willing to have social behavior that matches the moral objection to it. So on and on and on it goes that we allow minors to get legally married.  Oh, a 17 year old felt hurt? That isn't as important as society saying, "No.  I'm not going to support this very bad idea. I'll just decline and say that I won't be able to attend."  If that's done a larger scale we might make some progress.

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38 minutes ago, katilac said:

 

The statistics for minors getting married in America are just appalling. 

Why do you think Scarlett is not close to her? Unless I missed it, she didn't say that. They are family friends and the girl has been mentioned in many other threads. I get the feeling that they are certainly close enough that the bride would notice if she didn't attend the wedding, but Scarlett can correct me if I'm wrong. 

<snip>

So I know people don't necessarily want to waste time in every thread rehashing old stuff, but not everyone has read or remembers those threads. So people coming into it without knowing details, and those details not laid out in the OP, means there are going to be some responses that don't fit the history and how it affects the current situation.

If the bride and groom are part of a small church congregation and everyone is invited, then it would be pretty awful if a lot of people didn't show up for it. If it's typical for everyone to go, then I guess going does not convey approval or anything other than "I'm here because this is the way we do things."  

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30 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

Because she didn't explain any close relationship, which would be a relevant thing to mention in this discussion.
Maybe if people stopped showing up to morally objectionable events that put girls in bad legal positions, clueless people would actually think twice about signing for their daughters rather and saying, "Honey, marriage is for adults.  When you're an adult you can choose your own spouse.  There's no reason in this day in age for a minor child to get married."

We whine that there are social circles where this happens, but we're not willing to have social behavior that matches the moral objection to it. So on and on and on it goes that we allow minors to get legally married.  Oh, a 17 year old felt hurt? That isn't as important as society saying, "No.  I'm not going to support this very bad idea. I'll just decline and say that I won't be able to attend."  If that's done a larger scale we might make some progress.

You make all the points my son does. 

I am choosing to err on the side of kindness. We would be missed if we don’t go. It will be an obvious show of disapproval . 

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Just now, Scarlett said:

You make all the points my son does. 

I am choosing to err on the side of kindness. We would be missed if we don’t go. It will be an obvious show of disapproval . 

I don't think it's kind to make the bride feel better in the moment.  I think the kind thing to do is to obviously disapprove.  It may be uncomfortable and tearful or everyone involved, but it's the kind thing to do in the long run. Like refusing to laugh along with a racist joke. Girls need a world where their clueless mothers know you won't get anyone to show up for a child bride wedding.

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My line is open sin and I don't think the situation you described falls into that category. I think you're doing the right thing, erring on the side of kindness. I would go.

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27 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

Oh, a 17 year old felt hurt? That isn't as important as society saying, "No.  I'm not going to support this very bad idea. I'll just decline and say that I won't be able to attend."  If that's done a larger scale we might make some progress.

 

We fundamentally differ on what attending a wedding signifies. You regard it as lending support to the marriage itself, I regard it as sending best wishes. And, yes, supporting the individuals involved even if I think they're making a mistake.  

I am also okay with participating in individual events that do not match my general personal beliefs. I attend weddings where I know 'obeying' is part of the vows, even though I don't agree with that. I attended an Eagle Scout ceremony even though I didn't agree with their stance (at the time) on LGBTQ. There are limits - I'm not going to watch you get a medal from the local Nazi party - but I despair of the idea that reasonable people can't disagree and be there for each other in that disagreement. 

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9 minutes ago, marbel said:

So I know people don't necessarily want to waste time in every thread rehashing old stuff, but not everyone has read or remembers those threads. 

 

Sure, but I don't know why one would assume that she is not close to the girl any more than they would assume that she is. 

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One of my friends married when she was 18 (or maybe 19?) and her husband was in his late 30's. They are still ridiculously happy twenty years later. They run an incredibly successful business. Their children are mature, intelligent, and kind.

My mom and dad married when they were 17 and 18. After a less-than-ideal start, they are still together almost 50 years later and very much in love. 

The bride's not going to instantly and magically change from a child to woman when her birthday rolls around. 

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4 minutes ago, katilac said:

 

We fundamentally differ on what attending a wedding signifies. You regard it as lending support to the marriage itself, I regard it as sending best wishes. And, yes, supporting the individuals involved even if I think they're making a mistake.  

I am also okay with participating in individual events that do not match my general personal beliefs. I attend weddings where I know 'obeying' is part of the vows, even though I don't agree with that. I attended an Eagle Scout ceremony even though I didn't agree with their stance (at the time) on LGBTQ. There are limits - I'm not going to watch you get a medal from the local Nazi party - but I despair of the idea that reasonable people can't disagree and be there for each other in that disagreement. 

And we fundamentally disagree on how serious a moral issue child brides are. It doesn't pass the consenting adults test which all legal contracts should and the age disparity is equivalent to pedophilia since a minor is involved.   No, I won't smile along with that kind of stuff that has such a terrible affect on children just so everyone else in the community feels emotionally comfortable in a tragic social event. 

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2 minutes ago, Homeschool Mom in AZ said:

And we fundamentally disagree on how serious a moral issue child brides are. It doesn't pass the consenting adults test which all legal contracts should and the age disparity is equivalent to pedophilia since a minor is involved.   No, I won't smile along with that kind of stuff that has such a terrible affect on children just so everyone else in the community feels emotionally comfortable in a tragic social event. 

 

The age disparity and her being a minor does not equate to pedophilia. Pedophilia is specifically about sexual attraction to prepubescent children, which means pedophile is the wrong word even if the minor is question is only 14 or 15. 

Parents, guardians, and the courts can and do sign contracts on behalf of minors in various circumstances. That's why minors can appear on television shows and publish books: someone signed a contract on their behalf that is enforceable in court. Good or bad, it is not limited to minors getting married. 

I think we do disagree on some fundamentals of minors getting married. I think it's usually quite a bad idea for a 17-yr-old to get married these days, but I don't have the moral qualms about it that I would if one of the participants were 12 or 15. I do know a fair number of people who married at that age and did just fine; overall, the track record is no worse than any other age group ime. Maturity is a continuum to me, there is no magical different between 2 months from 18 and 18. Some homes situations are so bad or just devoid of opportunity that a 17-yr-old with few resources actually is better off getting married than staying home. Our country simply does not have a strong safety net for kids and teens (or, y'know, anyone else, but particularly kids and teens). We can and should work to change that, but it is a current fact that is not going to be changed by not attending a 17-yr-old's wedding. 

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