The problem is this: my girlfriend’s best friend is also in California, and as soon as I told her about the wedding, she immediately said, “Oh sweet, I get to visit so-n-so!” Well, I feel there won’t be enough time. I am a person who believes a wedding, especially with friends I see once every year if I’m lucky, is a weekend-long celebration. But she has her heart set on visiting her friend whom she rarely gets to see. I told her how important it is that we celebrate the wedding all weekend with my friends, and she is very set on seeing her friends, too. She thinks that the wedding and the reception are the only important activities.
So, when situations like this come up, and I tell her to go hang out with her friend, which I am not 100% happy with, I feel like I’m caving…but what am I to do? She isn’t making me ditch out on my friend’s activities, and I wouldn’t want her to resent me by keeping her from doing what she wants to do. But what do I tell my friends, with fear that they think their wedding events are not as important to her? (Let me clarify that wedding events are things like going out on the town and drinking or breakfast the day after the wedding with everyone). I also do not want to invite a stranger to my friend’s wedding activities (aka trying the whole combine both friends to stay together).
Is my lack of seeing her ability to compromise clouded by my selfishness? – Weddings are Weekend Events!
Well, first of all, when your girlfriend says that her friend “is in California, too,” what exactly does that mean? Because California is HUGE. Unless her friend lives in the same town or within an hour or two of where you’re staying, I don’t see how it would even be feasible for her to attend your friend’s wedding AND see her friend even if you were totally on board with the whole thing.
For argument’s sake, let’s say her friend lives in the very town you’ll be staying. In that case, you ARE being selfish by asking her to spend the entire weekend hanging out solely with your friends (even if you’re paying for her ticket, but ESPECIALLY if she’s paying her own way). Let’s be honest, the couple getting married isn’t going to find two shits to give that their out-of-town friend’s out-of-town girlfriend they hardly know isn’t at every single event throughout the weekend. Surrounded by all their other friends and family — whom they do know well and love — they’re not going to care if your girlfriend misses the morning-after brunch or doesn’t make it to one of the nights out on the town. I mean, really.
But if your concern is that you just want your group of friends to get to know your girlfriend (and vice versa), then you really are being incredibly selfish seeing as how she probably would like her local friend(s) to get to know you and yet she’s not asking you to give up time with your friends to make that happen.
So many of us live far away from friends and family, and, if we spend good money and use some of our precious vacation time, which all of us have too little of, to visit some of those out-of-town loved ones, we’d be foolish not to try to see as many of them in one trip as we can (within reason) especially if we have the opportunity to do so. I know that, for example, when I go to Chicago, where I have one or two dozen people I love seeing, I can’t devote an entire trip to just one or two people even if I’m there for a wedding (which I was on my last trip in September).
There was one day on our last trip to Chicago where we skipped the post-wedding brunch and parked ourselves at a local park for several hours while various groups of friends stopped by to say “hi.” One couple brought their dog for an hour before they had to rush off somewhere. Another couple brought their new baby for 45 minutes before we had to rush Jackson home for his nap. And in between that, an old friend of Drew’s whom he hadn’t seen in a few years, stopped by for an hour while we played with Jack in the playground. We tried to squeeze in as many people as we could and, luckily, they all accommodated us, too, so we got to see their faces and hug them and just connect in a way we can’t from several states away. We couldn’t have done that had we stuck to only wedding events while we were there. In fact, it didn’t even cross our minds to stick to only wedding events. Weekend-long wedding events are for people who either live locally and happen to be available for 48 hours, or for out-of-town guests who don’t have anyone or anything else they need or want to see.
Your girlfriend has a friend she could see while she’s there. Give her your blessing to do that. Don’t be a dick. She’ll still get to mix and mingle with your friends. She’ll still be at the wedding, of course. But she’ll also be able to take advantage of a rare opportunity to see someone — her best friend! — who lives on the other side of the country and to make that face-to-face connection that is so important in this age of constant screen communication.
Then again, if the wedding is in L.A. and the best friend lives in, like, San Diego, then, no. It’s not gonna happen.
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LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:14 am
WWS. If it’s feasible for her to spend an afternoon or evening with her best friend, then she should do it. She’s going to CA for YOUR friend’s wedding. She agreed to the wedding and the reception…unless the invitation specified other requested activities and she agreed to those. Going out at night for drinks is NOT a wedding centric activity. I doubt the whole wedding will be there (unless it’s a really small wedding). The breakfast the day after perhaps, and maybe if you weren’t so stuck on the rest of the weekend, she would agree to go. But with you it seems to be all or nothing, so no compromise will happen. And don’t you want a little time with your friends without having to clue her into everything? A night out at bars would be perfect for that.
Kay December 17, 2013, 9:15 am
WWS. I mean, if this was in Rhode Island, then she’d totally be right about you being a jerk. But California is one of those states where there’s so much ground to cover. You couldn’t go to Modesto, then Burbank, then back to Modesto in the same day – not if you were ever planning to get out of the car.
AmyP December 17, 2013, 9:16 am
Going to the wedding, the reception, and whatever else you’ve RSVPed for is quite enough. This idea of the wedding as a whole weekend event is a new one in our culture, and the girlfriend is not being a bad person to not want to spend the entire weekend socializing with strangers.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 9:23 am
Yeh the wedding as an entire weekend/week long affair kind of bugs me. I mean great for the people who can afford it an enjoy it, but I think it’s a ridiculous racket that was invented by The Knot. I’m in the midst of wedding planning and I keep reading “Oh you should have a wedding brunch. Why just have a rehearsal dinner? Throw a seperate party for the people who aren’t invited to the rehearsal dinner. Better yet, rent out a vacation house and throw a party every night!”. Oh and as a guest, I am TIRED after weddings, I don’t want to go to brunch the next day and socialize, thanks.
bethany December 17, 2013, 9:27 am
Yeah, I’m with you. For most of us, going to the wedding is enough. I can see if it’s a destination wedding, and every single person is traveling to get there, but really, most guests don’t want the pressure of attending so many events.
starpattern December 17, 2013, 9:40 am
I agree with all of you! I love my friends and family, but my god, I absolutely do not want to spend entire days on end going to one wedding event after another. I am always surprised when I hear of a couple who wants to do this, too – don’t they want to take a break from the chaos, too?
bagge72 December 17, 2013, 9:44 am
I feel like this happens when you are younger, like in your early 20’s, people want to act like it is a college reunion, and drink all weekend.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 9:56 am
I enjoy spending a whole weekend on wedding events, especially if it is a close friend. My family and friends are spread out all over the east coast, so a wedding is one of the few times everyone gets together. I love spending every minute I can with them.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:59 am
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 10:02 am
I enjoy extended socializing, too. Like an entire weekend of group activities sounds awesome to me. But I’m an extrovert.
starpattern December 17, 2013, 10:09 am
Maybe that’s the difference. I kind of sit on the fence of introverted and extroverted – so while I would enjoy most of it, I would need to get breakfast alone or turn in early one night to read for a couple hours to keep from going absolutely bonkers from sheer sensory overload.
gatecrashergirl December 17, 2013, 1:14 pm
I’m in the same boat. I’d love to spend the whole weekend with my friends from out of town but, unlike the LW, I wouldn’t expect a significant other to have the same desire.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:42 am
haha, I always liked those brunches the day after. Everyone gets to talk about the night before and recover together.
bagge72 December 17, 2013, 9:45 am
Yeah, and the food is awesome, so many versions of pig to eat.
Christy December 17, 2013, 9:47 am
I had an out-of-town wedding this fall where we stayed on-site in one of the guest rooms, and brunch was fun (and nice!) because we didn’t have to do anything other than go downstairs, and it was free. But coming for brunch from somewhere other than exactly where the brunch is held? No thank you.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:58 am
The last wedding brunch I went to I was so beyond hungover, but “couldn’t” miss it especially since it was in the same hotel, so I woke up looking like a swollen mess and realized I never brought my overnight bag in, so had to go to it in the dress from last night.
I bet the groom was wishing he’d married me instead. haha.
MMcG December 17, 2013, 1:49 pm
Not only do I love me some brunch, but in some circles a day-after brunch is considered customary just like the rehearsal dinner. I know in the south it is basically expected… then again it is also very informal, stop by or don’t kind of a thing too.
The notion that the bride and groom are going to be hurt that someone they’ve never met is going to ONLY attend the wedding and reception is cray cray… this LW sounds like he (or she) is going to be a heck of a groom/bridezilla some day!
Kate B. December 17, 2013, 10:44 am
Yeah, I would feel very pressured to spend the entire weekend with people I don’t know. But I am an introvert. If it were me, I would need to schedule some time away from the group, maybe play tourist for a day. See the sights. So, I wouldn’t be there the whole time even if I didn’t have a friend to visit. The wedding itself, the rehearsal dinner and breakfast the day after would be fine for me.
Taylor December 17, 2013, 11:54 am
I have a different perspective on this. For our wedding, I wanted to see our out of towners as much as possible – having my favorite people in town and then only seeing them for the reception seemed like a missed opportunity. A lot of them really wanted to see each other as well, since as there were a lot of people from the same HS/college/grad school/old jobs. We had an out of towners party the night before, but with the purpose of giving people a chance to mingle and catch up. We had it at the hotel where the reception was scheduled (and most people were staying at), got a bunch of snacks and drinks from Costco, and held it in a courtesy room from 6 to midnight. No obligations, not formal at all, and it was a blast (and cost us maybe 200$)! Same thing with the day after brunch – it was at the same hotel, people were in charge of their own meal (which was 10$), and we got to love up some good friends before they left for their home states (and countries). And pass out leftover cupcakes =) Our intention was to optimize facetime, and that’s what happened.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 12:10 pm
What I think is different about what you’re describing is that you hosted an event exclusively for your wedding guests (even if it was super casual). LW is saying he doesn’t even want his girlfriends friends to meet up for a not-hosted, post reception casual bar hang out (or like a hungover brunch meet up the next day). That’s what sucky.
(We also had the idea that we wanted to spend as much time as possible with our out of town guests, so I totally understand the perspective. I just think the events are different.)
MMcG December 17, 2013, 1:51 pm
Good catch GG… I mean if at some point folks are gathered to have drinks at a bar somewhere the LW isn’t going to play bouncer or check people’s invites on the way in ffs!
Taylor December 17, 2013, 2:20 pm
I don’t ever hit the correct reply link =) My original comment was a response to kerry’s comment about weddings as a weekend/week long affair – that it can be low key, and not Knot-ified.
CatsMeow December 17, 2013, 12:25 pm
I’ve never even heard of such a thing. The weddings I was IN (MOH) involved the rehearsal and dinner, hair/nails, wedding, reception, and brunch. That’s enough. Is there more??? Spending the weekend as an opportunity to catch up with friends who are also there for the wedding doesn’t strike me as a “wedding event.”
stickelet December 17, 2013, 12:56 pm
The LAST thing I want to do as a newly married couple is get up early the next morning and host a wedding brunch and open all my gifts. I will be sleeping in and hanging out with my new husband. And I want to open my gifts in private. I don’t like all that attention and the wedding day will exhaust me enough.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 12:58 pm
Silly stickelet. You open all the presents as soon as you get back to your room that night. That’s what the wedding night is for!
MMcG December 17, 2013, 1:53 pm
Presents at the wedding… almost all of mine were directly mailed to me so I didn’t have to deal (which was lovely)!?! Brunch is for hangover grub and gossip about who did what with whom at the reception 😉
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 1:56 pm
When are we smoking a doobie together? 😉
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 2:00 pm
Hey I want in! I get the urge like once every 10 years. I’m not due for another 6-7 years but I’ll suck it up. Just be prepared for very spastic AP who will just entertain herself in a corner for like 12 hours.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 2:02 pm
Fine, but we all have to use fake names. Mine is Addie Pray when I do drugs, so you’ll have to pick a new one.
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 2:44 pm
Well shit. I will be GGuy then. Haha.
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 2:44 pm
I mean Yesterday’s LW’s Husband!
mrmidtwenties December 17, 2013, 7:01 pm
Oh man, I would totes smoke some doobies with you guys, I get to be Diablo
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 9:17 am
WWS said all the way. I mean, this is a perfect opportunity for her to see her friend (assuming yeah, that the friend lives within feasible distance. If she doesn’t, your girlfriend will quickly figure that out, I’m sure).
Anyway—she’s going to be at the wedding ceremony, & the reception. She’ll have PLENTY of time to get to know your friends then, & really doesn’t need an entire weekend of… bonding? Like, personally, I find your whole “wedding weekend” plan exhausting (yes, I know it’s just brunch, going out on the town, etc. but keep in mind that your girlfriend doesn’t know any of these people, & maybe she feels it’s better for you to catch up with them on your own? Especially since she can conveniently use this time to catch up with her *own* friend, that she—in your own words— “rarely gets to see”?)
So yeah, sorry, I’m on her side here. It’s fine that you see weddings as weekend-long events, but that doesn’t mean your girlfriend does. And her point of view is as equally valid as yours. It’s not “caving in” to let her do what she wants without giving her shit about it; it’s called not being a dick.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:20 am
Thank you! The caving in part really bothered me!! You aren’t her parent caving to buy her something that she’s been throwing a tantrum about. She’s a fucking grown ass adult!
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 9:27 am
Yeah, that part made me CRINGE.
Also, Wendy covered this, but to just tack on—like, the friends are ~not~ gonna give a fuck? I’m sure they’ll understand, without even being given an explanation, that their friend’s girlfriend just wants to get the most out of the trip…
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 9:39 am
I was going to add this too! So often we’re concerned about what people think about us or our SO’s actions, when most people don’t give a second thought to it unless they’re Judgey McJudgersons.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:41 am
Yeah, and if they are such good friends of his and they happen to notice she isn’t there, I hope they would be good enough people to say “oh, I’m glad she got a chance to see her best friend!” And then leave it at that.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 9:19 am
WWS. I understand how you could feel this way, but I think if you both don’t get the opportunity to go to CA often then you should “let” her see her friend for a bit if she is close by (like Wendy said, if this involves a day of travel then its probably not a good idea). Your friends will get to know her at the wedding/reception and this isn’t the only time you’ll see your friends with your girlfriend in tow. Plus, it will probably be nice to hang out with your friends without your girlfriend for a bit. It’s great to have your SO around, but sometimes its nice to be able to just focus on your friends. Have you already bought your tickets? Could you extend your trip a day or two so that you have time to visit this friend specifically?
bethany December 17, 2013, 9:19 am
If your gf’s friend does in fact live super close to the wedding, I see nothing wrong with her hanging out with her friend for a little. There aren’t a few free hours in the weekend for them to grab coffee or lunch?
Is there any way you can add an extra day onto your trip, so maybe she could go to all the wedding stuff with you, and then you could go with her to spend some time with her friend?
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:34 am
I agree with Wendy, but I would probably also be kind of anxious about the gf not spending any time with my friends. There should be a balance with regard to how much time she spends with LW’s friends vs with her best friend. Agree on a minimum amount of time she will get to know your friends, and let her spend the rest of the time with her bff.
The wedding activities don’t really have much to do with it: You want her to get to know your friends, it’s inconsequential whether this happens at a wedding brunch.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:36 am
She’s going to the wedding and reception. It’s not like she’s saying fuck that, I’m spending the weekend with my best friend! She’s more trying to work with him than he her. He comes off as all or nothing and that’s not conducive to spending time with his friends outside what she has agreed to.
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:41 am
I dunno. LW is saying s/he might be selfish here. This is a LW with self awareness. I usually think that if someone has enough self awareness to consider they might be selfish, there’s something to their concerns. Admittedly I’m giving LW the benefit of the doubt.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:43 am
Fair enough…admittedly his use of “caving in” to ANYTHING related to her friend makes me so annoyed.
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:46 am
Yeah, I totally agree with you on “caving in” – but maybe it was just a bad word choice? IDK, just trying to counteract another “LW is in the wrong about everything” tendency in the comments…
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:47 am
I didn’t love that caving thing either, but I did understand why he felt a little off about this. I’m guessing he saw this as the wedding being the only reason they are going to CA, so that’s all they should be doing? idk.
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 9:51 am
Yeah…and perhaps he just really wants his friends to get to know her and all…but still. That is SUCH. BAD. WORDING. And thought. He knows her best friend lives out there and if it’s feasible he should understand that she wants at least a little time with someone she sees rarely. And if getting to know HIS friends are so important to him…well he should be understanding about her feelings in that case.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 9:49 am
Ok, this is random of me, but I imagined this couple as lesbians? Maybe its the writing style or the fact that so many women write into DW.
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:53 am
I did so, too. They are totally a lesbian couple.
bethany December 17, 2013, 10:00 am
KCL December 17, 2013, 10:01 am
I did too, not sure why.
Wendy December 17, 2013, 10:17 am
Pretty sure it’s a dude. Sounded like a male voice to me and based on my google search of the name, I am 99% sure I’m right.
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 10:19 am
OK, it’s funny how wrong one’s perception can be.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 10:58 am
Not like it matters though, advice is still the same.
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 9:52 am
Right, I did WANT to give him the benefit of the doubt, actually— but everything else in the letter sort of over-shadowed the glimmer of self-awareness? to me, as I was responding. And I think some light… shaking… here might do LW some good (although I always like your instinct to deflect pile-on, Sas 🙂 )
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:57 am
Yeah, I might be defending the wrong LW. I just want to defend the LW today after yesterday.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:45 am
My only thought was that if the closest friends are the ones getting married, the gf may not really get to hang out with them at all if she only attends the wedding. Everyone on here always says that the bride and groom get no time with their guests.
SasLinna December 17, 2013, 9:50 am
That’s what I was thinking. The ceremony itself leaves no room to talk to anyone, and the reception often just very little (especially as far at the groom and bride are concerned). It depends on the type of reception, obviously, but I could see how a brunch the morning after the wedding would be a better setting to introduce the girlfriend to the friends.
Liquid Luck December 17, 2013, 11:14 am
Eh, I get that, but even so I don’t think his close friends should trump *her* close friend, especially when she’s not impacting his ability to spend time with them. She doesn’t get to see her friend often, so it’s not as if she’s choosing someone she sees all the time over friends he rarely gets to see. I just don’t get why his girlfriend absolutely needs to be included in his friendships at the expense of her own.
But then again, as much as I want my partner to know my friends and to know his, we also have no problems maintaining friendships with people the other doesn’t know. I don’t think all friends need to be shared.
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 11:17 am
Yeah, this. I get wanting your friends & S/O to meet, but I don’t understand the ~need~ for them to get to know each other & spend time together over the course of a wedding, especially (like you said) at the expense of the girlfriend maintaining her own close friendships? I think maybe you’re onto something with what you said in your other comment @LL, that it’s like an image thing.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:18 am
Not that his friends “trump” her’s, but if he’s thinking the only reason they are going is to be able to attend the whole weekend wedding thing, then I could see why he thought the way he did. I’m not saying he’s right, I”m just kinda getting WHY he might’ve thought this way?
Liquid Luck December 17, 2013, 12:54 pm
I can see why he might have thought that initially and just been thrown off by her suggestion, but being put out about it enough to write in for advice as opposed to just internally re-adjusting expectations makes it seem like he doesn’t have a great grasp on this concept. So it’s not the idea itself that’s awful, just the insistence on sticking to it.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 12:56 pm
Very good point.
Sara December 17, 2013, 9:36 am
Your girlfriend and friends will get to spend time together, even if your girlfriend takes some time to catch up with one of her friends. Maybe you two can talk about when would be best for the two of them to meet up during such a busy weekend? And, if I were meeting a friend’s girlfriend for the first time, I’d be glad to learn that she has been able to maintain long-term, long-distance friendships, because that ability speaks to her personality and how kindly she treats people. I’d be so happy for my friend to have found such a caring person.
Callifax December 17, 2013, 9:40 am
Plus, it’s incredibly stressful and exhausting to have to be “on” (ie, energetic, personable, friendly, outgoing, making small-talk) with near or complete strangers all weekend long. Even after just a wedding and reception with my SO’s distant relatives, I’m beat. Seeing her best friend, someone who she can relax and just be herself with, will probably just be a way for her to unwind and de-stress after three straight days of extroverted activities.
But I’m quite introverted, so maybe that’s just me.
painted_lady December 17, 2013, 10:06 am
OH GOD YES.
Walter and I are headed out of town to visit his family for Christmas, and he doesn’t have a car, so we have to take mine. I love his family, but his mom’s house is tiny, and I’ve never met one of his brothers or that brothers son and girlfriend, and so there’s going to be a lot of “stuck in the house with strangers” going on (and no, we can’t afford a hotel because we have to board the dog because he’s not great with kids). I’m sort of pre-emptively panicking, and so I told Walter that, aside from the coat of boarding the dog, I can only handle so much packed-house-with-strangers. He was very understanding, thank goodness, because he knows how anxious the thought of being “on” all the time makes me.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 10:10 am
Sort of related, but we’re having 8 adults, 2 babies, and a dog at my parents house this holidays. It’s TOO MUCH! I’m going to make sure my fiance and I get out of the house just the two of us so I don’t get all moody. My family members talk all.the.time and debate about all.the.politics. I can’t handle it. Maybe you and Walter could go do stuff for a few hours just the two of you to help ease the anxiety?
painted_lady December 17, 2013, 10:20 am
Yeah, very likely. Intellectually, I know it’ll be okay – his mom is really awesome and understanding of the fact that I’m a little crazy, so she’s really good about arranging things in a way that doesn’t overload me.
bethany December 17, 2013, 10:19 am
My extended family is very close, and very loud. We can spend HOURS sitting around talking about nothing, and it’s awesome. But it’s too much for Dave. So when we go up there and stay over for a few days, I always make sure that either we get out of the house by ourselves for a bit, or he’ll go off mountain biking for a few hours. It makes a big difference to just know that you can get away for a little while.
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 10:39 am
Thats how my family is and I can handle it for a bit, but sometimes its annoying as hell. Also, I have 3 lawyers in my family and they’re really good at arguing and so they’ll “win” the debate even though I’m right and know more. Basically everyone’s a know-it-all and will just make shit up when I actually took a class on something or read a book on it. Family dynamics….
Liquid Luck December 17, 2013, 11:17 am
J is like that too. My family is awfully loud and just kind of crazy, which I love but he’s still getting used to. So sometimes he’ll take the dogs on a walk by himself or hole up in the basement alone playing video games so that he can relax and recharge. Luckily there are enough people around that nobody ever notices he’s missing (even me sometimes…oops), so he can have as much alone time as he wants.
bagge72 December 17, 2013, 9:40 am
You don’t have to spend everynight with them! Pick a night, and spend it with her, and her friends, and then spend the rest of the weekend with your wedding stuff. There has to be some comprimise in there instead of just being like oh hey, when we get to Cali, you go your way, and I will go mine, and I will meet you at the wedding.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 9:40 am
WWS. Also, why not compromise? If you are all actually in the same town/city- everyone go to the same bar post wedding; your friends and her friends. Everyone wins. We did this after a wedding last year and it worked out great.
mertlej December 17, 2013, 10:49 am
I was a little put off by the “i don’t want to invite a stranger to my friends’ wedding events” comment. I took that to mean he wouldn’t even want the gf’s friend to come to a bar where they were all out drinking. lame lack of compromise.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 10:54 am
Haha, I missed that line. That is a ridiculous idea. Who doesn’t want more cool people out at a bar with them??
katie December 17, 2013, 10:59 am
well it sounds like he feels that the “wedding party” would be offended by strangers coming to their wedding… but then, to my comment of my comment (haha), is he literally talking about wedding events or is this just hanging out with friends on a weekend that happens to also be a wedding weekend? is he in the wedding party? are his friends who i assume are probably in the wedding party even free for this stuff? how can someone get offended by people coming to a bar and hanging out with them, is it literally just because their wedding is THAT WEEKEND? thats weird.
i feel like he hasnt thought this through.
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 11:10 am
I feel like he’s thought this through TOO much, & just has all these ideas that won’t even apply to the situation once he & his girlfriend are in it? Like, the wedding friends won’t care about anything (repeating myself, but I’m launching into a rant so bear with me), they ~probably~ won’t care if gf’s friend came out to the bar with them, they aren’t gonna care if gf leaves, & they’re definitely *not* going to be like, “But LW, why isn’t your girlfriend partaking in all of our cool activities? Does she hate us?” Hell, maybe there won’t even BE as many activities as the LW thinks there will be? And finally, if he somehow convinces his girlfriend to stay for everything…he PROBABLY won’t be as thrilled with her constant company as he thinks. Basically, he needs to rearrange his entire thought process about the weekend.
katie December 17, 2013, 11:16 am
oh yea, i forgot to say that- but yes, LW, you will probably be SO HAPPY that your girlfriend leaves for some of the time and you get friend time without her.
Liquid Luck December 17, 2013, 11:22 am
I love it when J stays home and lets me get in time with my friends without him. It’s nice to pretend it’s the old days sometimes and to be able to reminisce without having to retell every story he doesn’t know or try to explain inside jokes, plus he doesn’t have to sit around feeling like a third wheel for a night. I’m truly baffled as to why the LW seems so averse to this plan.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 11:11 am
It’s a pretty shitty point of view if people think their wedding is that special that a guests friend can’t meet her at the bar post wedding since they might be there. It’s a bar, get over yourself.
mertlej December 17, 2013, 11:12 am
Yeah, I interpreted wedding events as the bar, going to breakfast, etc, because he said: “Let me clarify that wedding events are things like going out on the town and drinking or breakfast the day after the wedding with everyone.”
So basically, in his mind, he has every second of the weekend reserved exclusively for whatever he and his old friends decide to do. And lets be honest – the couple getting married are definitely not going to be at every random event they manage to pack in that weekend. He wants 100% of the weekend to be devoted to “celebrat[ing] the wedding all weekend with my friends”, which sounds super unreasonable and inflexible to me.
katie December 17, 2013, 11:17 am
so is this some weird new category of non-official-wedding but only exclusively wedding people related events that everyone in the wedding still has time for? wtf is that???
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 11:23 am
It’s ridiculous, that’s what it is. It’s a bar…anyone can come! Like it’s literally open to the public… It’s a very unrealistic (and a bit controlling) expectation to think she would want to do every single thing he did with his bros.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:30 am
Am I crazy? I don’t think that’s unrealistic or controlling to assume your gf will go to the same places you are going when you are going on a trip together, especially when the purpose of the trip is to do a wedding weekend. (not saying I don’t think she should be able to go see her friend, just that I don’t think it was weird of him to assume she’d only be doing the wedding stuff).
LadyinPurpleNotRed December 17, 2013, 11:31 am
It’s a little weird that he thinks she wouldn’t want to spend time with her best friend that she rarely sees if it’s possible.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:36 am
I guess. And like I said, I may be the nutty one here since I’m clearly in the minority, but I guess I’m just imagining being in this guy’s shoes and I’d also assume my boyfriend would just be doing whatever I’m doing. Obviously if he said ‘hey, I’d love to see Tom while we’re out there,’ I’d try to make that happen. And even if I were the gf, I could see not even thinking about trying to see my friend since I’d assume we’d be busy doing “his” stuff since its “his” trip that was planned.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:37 am
Oh, and I don’t think we’re super clingy or co-dependant, so I don’t think that’s playing into my stance. I wouldn’t have an issue being apart or anything.
rachel December 17, 2013, 12:33 pm
I can sort of see what you’re saying. If I planned a trip and brought Ross, I would kind of assume he was going along with what I was planning, and I could imagine being a bit taken aback if he brought up doing something else. But once the initial shock wore off, I’d think, oh, it won’t actually affect me that much. And I’d get over it. I think the LW just needs to get to that last point haha.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 12:50 pm
I don’t think you’re crazy, I would have the same assumption- we’re traveling for an event for your friends so we do your stuff. But I also don’t see the big deal in an extra friend stopping by the bar post wedding or say GF and friend grabbing lunch/brunch before getting ready for the wedding. He can’t spare her an hour or two? (and I am clingy and co-dependent!)
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 12:55 pm
haha, GG! I agree.
Yea, as long as he gets to the last part, like rachel said.
starpattern December 17, 2013, 12:59 pm
I also don’t think you’re nutty. I would probably assume the same thing, and yeah, probably be a little disappointed if I were in LW’s shoes and I had planned on my SO being with me the whole trip and he wanted to duck out for a little while. My feelings on this are just that – while LW might rather have her there the whole weekend and that’s understandable, and it’s ok for him to be disappointed about it, he just also needs to try to be understanding that she wants to do something else, because it’s something that makes her happy and he ultimately wants that for her. So anyway I agree with you that the original assumption is not out of line at all – I just want LW to be patient and understanding with his gf about this.
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 11:34 am
i don’t think it’s weird to think before you talk that you’ll just be going all the same places. but, when your SO says hey my friend lives there too it’d be a great chance to hang out with her too! you don’t say no way, this is my wedding weekend you’re only doing what i say so! i mean if she was asking to bail on the wedding or reception i would understand. but, just asking for a little time to herself. not weird.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:38 am
Yea, you’re right. Although I don’t think he was actually saying youre only doing what I say, just asking if its messed up to want her to stay with him? idk.
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 11:56 am
and not get to see a friend she rarely gets to see? kind of. i mean she’s not asking to skip everything. just have a chance to hang out with a friend.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 12:10 pm
I realize all of that. My point was that he was just asking whether its messed up of her to “ditch” him for a day or not. If you are a little clueless or maybe have a history is of messed up gfs doing things you didn’t realize were messed up at the time, I can understand simply asking. Its not like he said No, you are of course not permitted to leave my side ever.
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 12:13 pm
and i mean i think it’s not messed up to try and see another friend while there. and i mean he doesn’t even want to invite her friends out to activities outside of the wedding itself, like a bar! i mean yeah he’s kind of being unreasonable.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 12:26 pm
I totally agree jly. I don’t think its messed up of her to want to at all. If he said no to her, I’d say he’s unreasonable too. I guess I’m being nice thinking he’s just asking and truly isn’t sure. The not wanting to invite her friend to the bar is so silly I almost think this guy has completely overthunk everything and is losing it.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 11:37 am
Before the conversation about her friends being there, I think that’s a normal thought. But once it was realized/discussed she wanted to see the friend, then yea I think it’s weird.
Also, what if he wanted to like, stay out till 4 am at a bar, and she wanted to go to bed at 1? That’s pretty reasonable to me to think could happen.
katie December 17, 2013, 11:37 am
no, i dont think thats crazy. i would assume i was doing all that stuff as the girlfriend in this situation, actually. i mean i would also plan a night or a lunch or something with my friend, but no, i dont think thats weird.
also, this is my (as the girlfriend) opportunity to finally meet and get to know people that the LW says are very important to him. i would very willingly do all that stuff…
Fabelle December 17, 2013, 11:37 am
I think you’re crazy LBH 😉
ha no, it’s just— I dunno, even if she weren’t seeing her friend, what if she was just like, “Hey ALLLLLL these activities are a bit much for me, I’mma head off for a bit to the beach” (or whatever)—would he be mad then?
Like, my bf & I planned to go to VA recently to visit his friend, & I was like, “whoooo, I’m going to try to see muchacha” (we wound up not going, but Fabello was like, “alright, cool”) Like, isn’t it ESPECIALLY COOL to spend time apart when each member of the couple plans to see their own friends?
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:39 am
haha, yea, I agree.
Idunno December 17, 2013, 1:29 pm
I’m actually with lets_be_honest here, but that’s because I tend to be someone (and, yes, I’m aware of how inflexible this sounds, so bear with me) for whom the expectations of the event when initially planned matters a lot. So – for instance – to mention a similar situation. My girlfriend and I decided NOT to go home for the holidays this year, and instead to travel within our state. I asked her for thoughts on travel, thinking we could go spend some couples time together – and she immediately suggested we go spend the entire Xmas holiday with a friend she hasn’t seen in forever. For me, that was too much – I’m an extreme introvert, and spending the holiday season with people I don’t know – who aren’t even family – just sounds torturous. We talked it through and decided to see them after the actual holiday for a few hours, but not to stay at their home/spend the entire time with them. So, we compromised on that – but had we not, I would have felt completely penned in.
I also really get feeling like you’ve planned a big event – taken the time to put in the work because you really do want your sig other to get to know your friends (and maybe know that when she’s in a group of people, she tends to focus on the folks she already knows, as mine does) – and then to find out she’s going to ditch out on them can feel a little insulting. I understand he also might seem rigid in his ways (I tend to be a little myself), but I know I personally would feel kind of insulted. Like, this weekend is supposed to be about my friends and me, and now you’re bringing someone random into the mix? And does that mean I have to drive you to go see them? And how long are you planning to see them for? And can’t we spend another weekend specifically going out to see them – or even extend the trip 2 or 3 days so you have real time with them that doesn’t step on my plans? That’s how I’d feel, and I don’t really care if it sounds selfish or ridiculous – people ARE selfish and ridiculous, and sometimes there are reasons for that. But if it was a pre-planned event that included multiple pre-planned outings and it seemed like she was ok with that – and then last-minute changed it not because it even sounds like SHE suggested it, but because her FRIEND suggested it – I think I’d be a little miffed. I mean, at least she’s running it by him, but I know I’d feel somewhat insulted if I spent a long time planning/paying/talking someone up, and then they skipped out on things.
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 1:35 pm
yikes I mean she’s not asking for that much but to see a friend she RARELY sees as well. She still wants to go to the wedding, reception,etc and I’m guessing the only events she won’t attend will be during the time she sees her friend. So, what maybe either the night before or the morning after? I mean you said in your post you and your gf compromised. Shouldn’t this LW be suggested the same thing? Compromise and be comfortable with the gf seeing her friend AND attend the wedding/reception. I mean I can see being taken aback at first, but eventually not being willing to compromise at all is going to come back to bite him in the ass. Because, what when it’s her wedding weekend and suddenly she expects what he did of her? How is he going to feel?
katie December 17, 2013, 2:24 pm
this is actually a great point- what if the LW has spent considerable time/money/whatever planning out different activities for the specified reason of the girlfriend getting to know the friends? if thats the case, i feel for this LW. that sucks! but, she still should be able to see her friend.
also, i wonder how much time she wants to see her friend for? like im *assuming* a lunch or a dinner or something, but if she is actually going to skip out on everything but the literal wedding and the LW is all excited for her to meet his group of friends… i dunno. thats shitty too.
also, now im thinking that if this was the LW’s family the responses would be a ton different..
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 2:31 pm
really? like if it was family it would be crappy of her to do that? because i would feel the same way. if it’s not like skipping out on everything then why isn’t it ok to grab lunch/dinner/a coffee/etc to see someone you normally wouldn’t get to see?
m and i do that every year we’re home for Christmas. when we’re with my family he goes to see his friends and when we’re with his I get one block of time to see mine. otherwise there are some people we’d just logistically never get to see.
katie December 17, 2013, 2:44 pm
oh no, i still think its fine to go get lunch/dinner/coffee… but im thinking that if this was a letter of: my girlfriend of 2 years and i are going to a wedding with my side of the family, and im super excited for her to finally meet them and get to know them, as we hardly every get to see each other (“This group of friends is one that I rarely see, and I am excited for my girlfriend to get to know these people better as they are very important to me”). but now she doesnt want to see them other then the actual wedding, she wants to just go see her own friends.
i think people would then say that she is terrible for not wanting to meet and get to know this guys family, because family is so important, she is a part of your life now, bla bla bla. and i would agree. lol. i still think it would be fine for her to get lunch/dinner/coffee with her friend, but just the fact that he is excited to integrate her into his life should mean something, shouldnt it?
jlyfsh December 17, 2013, 2:47 pm
well yeah and i get where you’re coming from but her friends are ones she rarely sees too. why not use it as a chance to do both? i don’t know, i guess i’m not seeing it as rigid as either she spends all her time doing x with him or she’s being terrible.
Ele4phant December 18, 2013, 12:34 pm
Well, except that she indicated she wanted to see her friend as soon as she heard about the wedding. She isn’t backing out of any plans, because she didn’t know they existed. I could understand him being legitimately peeved if they agreed on a set of plans, but if he made all these plans and *didn’t* tell her about them, he really has no right to feel she’s ditching out on him, even if he did spend a lot of time planning their trip.
CatsMeow December 17, 2013, 12:28 pm
Yeah, taking a stranger to a rehearsal would be one thing, but if they’re just getting together at a bar? LIGHTEN UP, dude.
Matcha December 17, 2013, 2:03 pm
I just took that to mean that he thought that neither party would be really happy with that compromise. If they tried to integrate into the group (let’s introduce the two to everyone) I would get the feeling they would probably want to catch up rather than meet 15 new people. And then he’d have dragged them there just so they could want to do something else. Maybe I’m too charitable.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 10:59 am
I just re-read because clearly I glossed over some parts. LW, you sound like a total jerk. Seriously, you want to forbid your girlfriend from skipping extra, not required activities to see her friends and you ALSO won’t compromise? So it’s your way or no way? She will resent you if you keep it up.
starpattern December 17, 2013, 9:45 am
WWS. Also just to reiterate: it’s not “caving in” to agree to something your SO really wants to do, when you’d rather they do something else. It’s caring about their happiness. OK?
Holly December 17, 2013, 9:52 am
“Is my lack of seeing her ability to compromise clouded by my selfishness?”
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 11:35 am
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 9:54 am
I guess I’ll defend the caving comment. Maybe he was afraid that this actually wasn’t the Right Thing for the gf to do or even want to do and that he was getting walked all over for forcing himself to be ok with it. Obviously, its not the wrong thing to do to want to see your friends, but I’m just guessing he thought it wasn’t a normal/nice request of her’s and wanted to make sure we weren’t going to all agree with him and be ‘oh that’s so messed up she’s bailing on your friends’ wedding weekend.’
Miel December 17, 2013, 10:35 am
The only way I see “caving in” works is if she’s like “the wedding is in LA and my friends are in San Francisco ? I’m totally going to drive all night to see them just before the wedding !” “But darling…” “You STFU I’m doing what I want !” “Ok…. I’m going to keep quiet”. I guess that would be caving in because the girlfriend is crazy.
LW, I hope your girlfriend is not crazy.
Banana December 17, 2013, 12:12 pm
Yeah. I could go both ways.
On the one hand, the “caving” thing could also indicate that he feels like she walks all over him sometimes? And that’s why he has to be really firm with his boundaries/expectations? Which is not good, but is more her fault than his fault.
But the way I originally read it reminded me of the discussion we were having yesterday, about making “being right” more important than a healthy, respectful relationship. In other words, “caving” to him means admitting he was wrong about what her priorities should be or what the most courteous thing to do is. Which is not cool, because it shouldn’t be a competition to prove who was most “correct,” it should be about finding a compromise that works for both of you and respects both people’s wishes.
Lindsay December 17, 2013, 10:56 pm
“Caving” to me simply refers to whether it’s “weak” or whatever not to insist on it being your way or the highway. In some situations, that IS the appropriate response, but in one like this, I don’t think it is. Thus, it turns the idea of letting a partner compromise with you into a sign of weakness. At least that’s how I interpret this.
Bittergaymark December 17, 2013, 10:26 am
BUT she PROMISED she ‘d go to wedding and thus attend each and every event . To do otherwise makes her a “shitty” girlfriend! She now needs to made to feel like shit and blah blah blah because I am in my twenties and thus ONLY live my life in absurd absolutes. Nobody can EVER change their mind! A promise is a promise!! Especially those made without thinking about them as the other person simply won’t shut up about it…
I kid, I kid. The above is a grim satire to a series of posts to yesterday’s letter that simply made my skin crawl.
Okay, LW. I actually think you mean well — you don ‘t want others to misjudge your girlfriend if she skips prewedding breakfast number 3… But Wendy IS right. Nobody will give a fuck if she bails on a few of these events… Look, sure a wedding weekend IS a blast if you are an intimate friend of the couple and thus know everybody — but taxing as hell if you are a lover or spouse. Hell, having once brought a lover to a wedding weekend — I can attest that I would have been so stoked if Kevin had had somebody else to see or even a book to read. Hell, I’d have flown him across the state just for lunch myself if I’d known I would have a freaking break from trying to explain EVERY inside joke and reference… 😉 PS – As absurd as it sounds, I once did fly up to SF and back (from Burbank) just for a quick dinner, so yeah… It can be done.
rachel December 17, 2013, 10:36 am
Yeah, I’m with you all the way. A whole wedding weekend would be a lot of fun if it were my friends, but if it’s with a group of people I’e never met, that sounds exhausting.
theattack December 17, 2013, 12:02 pm
You’re such a nice person. I don’t write comments making fun of you.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 12:06 pm
It’s not worth your time to engage. Just ignore him.
theattack December 17, 2013, 12:38 pm
You’re right. He doesn’t care enough about anything or anyone to be nice so there’s no point. I’m just not in the mood to take shit.
Bittergaymark December 17, 2013, 1:02 pm
Did you even read your increasingly illogical posts yesterday? You honestly sounded very much like my over-the-top satire…
starpattern December 17, 2013, 1:11 pm
This is getting pretty mean. I know it’s the internet and all… but come on. 🙁
Bittergaymark December 17, 2013, 2:03 pm
Eh, ruthlessly pointing out that somebody is illogical — when they ARE being illogical isn’t exactly my definition of being mean.
theattack December 17, 2013, 2:07 pm
No, you are. You’re bringing up something that’s not even relevant right now just to make fun of someone for doing things differently than you do. You wrote an entire paragraph literally just making fun of me for no reason whatsoever.
GatorGirl December 17, 2013, 2:13 pm
Your way of thinking isn’t the ONLY way people can think. FFS. You are mean, and you relish in it.
theattack, please just let it go. It’s not worth our time to argue with someone who is so admittedly bitter.
theattack December 17, 2013, 2:16 pm
You’re right, it’s not worth it. It’s just so hard to stop. Especially right now because I’m already angrier today than I have been in months over some other crap.
theattack December 17, 2013, 2:20 pm
And the fact that he has 17 likes on such a mean-spirited, evil comment makes me want to punch the computer screen. I kind of can’t believe 17 DWers are basically seconding that about me. I don’t think I want to be here right now if that many people are so mean. Peace out, DW.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 2:35 pm
Maybe they are liking the other part of his comment? Just ignore him.
KCL December 17, 2013, 6:59 pm
I think they’re probably agreeing with the part of his comment that addresses the letter at hand, and might have missed the context he’s referring to with the snark.
kare December 18, 2013, 1:03 am
Yeah I definitely skimmed over the part that said it was a satire about posts on yesterday’s letter. I just went back to read it because of the replies. I wouldn’t have even known he was targeting anyone in particular if people hadn’t pointed it out. I didn’t follow yesterday’s column close enough to know which regular commenters said what.
Lindsay December 18, 2013, 6:25 pm
I doubt most people who liked it knew it was referring to you. Maybe it’s just because I’m out of the loop these days, but I still don’t really understand what’s going on. So, I don’t think everyone is “seconding” what he’s saying.
starpattern December 17, 2013, 3:06 pm
Well, you targeted a specific commenter or handful of commenters with no provocation on an irrelevant thread, for no other purpose I can see than to make fun of them or make them feel bad… that’s why it sounds mean to me.
Bittergaymark December 18, 2013, 1:52 am
Actually, it IS relevant in that both letters have caused the word “controlling” to be bandied about. It is hilarious to me that the same people who saw NOTHING wrong with a LW all but demanding her husband do as SHE says (or else!!) he must be a shitty husband and blah blah blah … are the VERY same people who find this LW incredibly controlling because he simply wishes his gf would actually — you know — attend all the events they are flying thousands of miles to attend.
Sorry, but the disconnect here is simply astounding.
Wendy December 18, 2013, 7:59 am
They are flying thousands of miles to attend a wedding and reception, which she is absolutely not protesting. I can’t believe YOU of all people think it’s reasonable that the boyfriend is practically demanding his gf go out for drinks with his old buddies — whom she’s already spending hours with during the wedding and reception and whatever else — rather than carve out a little time to see her best friend. Talk about double standard! If the roles were reversed, you’d be calling the woman all kinds of names. Fwiw, I think the LWs in both letters you’re referring to sound controlling but the dude in this letter is by far much more unreasonable, in my opinion.
Bittergaymark December 18, 2013, 5:22 pm
Wendy, in my original advice — I said he should let her go. I was ONLY chiming in here as it cracked me up that the same people jumping up and down about how controlling this LW is thought yesterday’s LW wasn’t.
PS — That said, I do think you ARE wayyyyy off about who is more controlling. This LW wants his GF to have a fun weekend meeting all of his friends. Yesterday’s wanted to control her husband’s pot comsumption FOREVER. And God knows — once he cuts down to twice a week — she will then demand one. Then none.
PS 2 — It would be INCREDIBLY tacky for the GF to invite one of her friends to ANY if these events. Who does that? Oh, right. The tacky members of the me.Me!ME!! generation. Sigh…
Wendy December 18, 2013, 5:36 pm
Agree with you on PS 2.
Lindsay December 18, 2013, 6:26 pm
Yeah, because all situations involving couples are exactly the same and everyone should have the same advice every day, like you.
LW December 18, 2013, 11:26 pm
Just wanted to say your post was more helpful to me then the original. The fact that everyone is jumping on my post about all the possible “wrongs”. Its not just “out to drinks at bars” she’d be missing. Its activities planned for the wedding party that significant others are invited to join in on.
If I was demanding her to do such things… why would I be asking people’s advice?! haha. I am simply here to better grasp the other side of the coin. Which constructive posts like yours have helped me do.
At first they got on my nerves. Then I read the posts on yesterday’s wall… And you were right!! Here I am not wanting to upset my SO and wanting her to be able to see her friends, but not wanting her to miss out on PLANNED activities. not just a random “hey lets all go to the bar”. Those who think that I wouldnt allow that are just idiotic. And people are defending the wife that is telling her husband he cannot do something that was a part of his life before her?! There is a huge disconnect!!
And for those who are jumping down my throat because they think im a guy… Im a lesbian. I wonder if that changes anyone’s perception on the issue.
So theres my rant. I will not be on DW any more. So much double standard and misunderstanding seen.
PS – girlfriend is now only attending he wedding. “stopping by” the reception afterwards. and hanging with her friend the rest of the time. Didnt want to come across as a monster, so I decided to let her re-vamp the entire weekend. She decided on this. At least I get to downgrade my hotel room now. Thanks everyone…….
bittergaymark December 29, 2013, 1:24 am
Hope this posts in the right place — but THANKS LW, for your feedback. People here were so fucking out to lunch with your letter. I think you were given horrible advice from far too many on here that day…
SasLinna December 29, 2013, 3:49 am
So LW is a lesbian after all! I knew it!
I agree that LW was treated a bit too harshly in the comments. We should give LW’s the benefit of the doubt more often IMO.
theattack December 17, 2013, 2:06 pm
That’s great. I don’t care. You’re still being mean, which I realize you don’t care about. I would rather sound illogical (by your standards, which I don’t care about, by the way) than to sound like a mean, cold hearted person. I don’t understand why you get off on just being so MEAN. It’s like your hobby or something.
iseeshiny December 17, 2013, 1:04 pm
I really think he just gets off on the attention. Ignoring him is the best thing you can do.
katie December 17, 2013, 10:43 am
HOW WEIRD- jake and i were just talking about our upcoming trip to cali for a wedding last night! (forum to follow)
LW, there is absolutely and totally a compromise here. its not weird for her to want to see her non-wedding related friend at a wedding weekend. not weird. its also not weird for you to want your girlfriend to meet and get to know (as much as you can at a wedding anyway…) your friends. not weird. you both are right. so, my advice would be to make a schedule…. i love schedules. i need to write one for the rest of christmas season and into the spring for my wedding cakes soon, actually. they are amazing tools. so, 1. figure out the events that are “very important” for you to have her there with you (not counting the actual wedding). 2. have her figure out what is “very important” for her to do with her friend while you are in CA. 3. write up a schedule, down to the hour, of the activities of the weekend. 4. enjoy! it can be done. you both have to give weight to the other’s needs, though… thats the only way it will work!
katie December 17, 2013, 10:45 am
oh also- be realistic about how much you will see people on the wedding weekend. are you in the wedding party? is the bride/groom in your friend circle? because if you are trying to plan extra nights out or whatever with anyone associated with the wedding you will probably be very disappointed. when jake and i were talking about our cali wedding trip, he was saying that he wants to get into san diego on like thurs for a saturday wedding to “hang out with them”. and i was like, unless we are in the wedding party, we are not going to see them. its not happening, dont count on it, if it does happen it will be a pleasant surprise. so be realistic with this whole thing as well…
MMcG December 17, 2013, 2:07 pm
I feel like the LW has a very odd sense of what weddings are… and he’s treating this as a reunion instead of realizing that people have stuff to do. Even if there were 3 events planned every single day that were for invited wedding guests only (say if they took over a big hotel or something) there should still be time in the day to do something non-wedding related. I mean it’s a weekend of fun and partying… not joining up for the military.
FFS if nothing else the wedding party will be taking photos and getting ready for the ceremony… when I was doing that (and we had the full schedule of events over a Fri night to Sun afternoon) people went swimming, sightseeing, grabbed something to eat. I wouldn’t have even known!!! Let the gf meet up for lunch or coffee the morning of the ceremony LW… the bride and groom need and get some downtime too… no biggie 🙂
starpattern December 17, 2013, 3:56 pm
“I mean it’s a weekend of fun and partying… not joining up for the military. ”
Liquid Luck December 17, 2013, 11:08 am
Yes, you’re being selfish. It might help you to remember that you are her partner, not her parent. You are not “caving,” because you do not have the authority to make this decision for her. She is allowed to decide how she spends her time, and she is choosing to split it between two very important people in her life (you and her best friend). She isn’t backing out on her agreement to actually attend the wedding and reception, nor is she asking you to give up time with your friends. There is no issue here at all that isn’t of your own making.
It concerns me that you are putting her want to see a very close friend second to your own desire of not wanting your friends to think badly about you. You are putting the image of your relationship above the happiness of your partner. I hope this is an isolated incident, but if it isn’t then you have a serious issue that needs to be resolved, and it has nothing to do with your girlfriend.
Lucy December 17, 2013, 1:28 pm
Yes. This. Go to a Control Freaks Anonymous meeting, LW. You are not the boss of your girl friend, and respecting her autonomy as an adult is not “caving.”
MMcG December 17, 2013, 2:09 pm
I also think it is mighty selfish that there is no mention of wanting to meet her best friend… I mean it’s like he wants to show off his woman to his friends (was he always the guy without a girl or something!?!) and it doesn’t occur to him that hey – I can meet my gf’s bestie for coffee while I’m here. Double bonus!!
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 11:35 am
You guys, I fell sleep in the puppy play pen last night – I slept with puppies on me – it was glorious! My puppies are better than everybody else’s puppies.
Sorry, I didn’t know where to share that.
Also, for fuck sake, what Wendy said, good God, what the hell.
lets_be_honest December 17, 2013, 11:42 am
Man, that sounds like a dream!
kerrycontrary December 17, 2013, 11:48 am
Hey! how are the puppies going? I remember having a puppy was such hard work. I mean that’s why they’re adorable so you don’t care. But taking them out all the time, puppy-proofing everything, finding a whole roll of toiletpaper shredded up in the bathroom…I just remember it was more work than anything else I had done. Do you have a dog-walker? Or are they just going on wee-wee pads cause they’re small? (my dog uses pee pads while I’m at work every day and its worked out great)
Addie Pray December 17, 2013, 12:13 pm
I’ll answer your questions in a new forum called “AP’s Doggies Are the Best”
muchachaenlaventana December 17, 2013, 12:24 pm
This is my dream.
quixoticbeatnik December 17, 2013, 11:55 am
I just wanted to chime in and say that the LW’s girlfriend and her best friend may be able to meet in the middle, too. So, LA and San Diego wouldn’t theoretically be too bad if they met in between. But yeah, I think the LW is being a little inflexible. If I had the chance to see my best friend on a trip by happy coincidence, I’d take it. It’s not like she’s choosing her over you. She’s trying to compromise.
MMcG December 17, 2013, 2:12 pm
I’m sad I can only like this once: “It’s not like she’s choosing her over you. She’s trying to compromise.”
LW, please read that sentence over and over again until it gets through to you.
muchachaenlaventana December 17, 2013, 12:32 pm
So I can’t really relate to this LW at all. There is no “problem,” your girlfriend is going to a wedding with you, and wants to see her best friend while out in CA. You should be happy she has the chance to see a friend she probably doesn’t get too very often. I assume the bf is somewhere close or your GF would probably not have suggested this (but if not then I guess its not as cut and dry). Anyways I will just say WWS! And add- since you don’t want your gf to go and “caved” and gave your permission (ew but this is how this reads regardless of your intentions) do not make your GF feel guilty with some passive aggressiveness when it comes time for her to see her friend. I know that I might have the tendency to do that if I told someone something is fine when it really upsets me, and I did not convey that to them, so this is maybe me projecting. She is still going to go to all the major events with you and if she misses one afternoon or evening to see her BEST FRIEND then I think it will still turn out A-OKAY. Also wouldn’t you sort of love the opportunity to go out and party with some of your best friends you haven’t seen in ages without a gf you have to introduce around and make sure she is comfortable/has people to talk to etc.? Try to put a positive spin on this, you know you are being selfish so stop and tell your GF that you are excited for her to see her friend and also get the chance to meet your buddies.
Lucy December 17, 2013, 1:26 pm
Did this LW really say in all seriousness that a wedding is a weekend long event? Ugh. Dude, you are part of the problem with weddings these days. And you’re being a selfish jerk.
sarolabelle December 17, 2013, 1:38 pm
Oh Wendy you should have made a better arguement. We went to a wedding in LA and went to San Diego for the day and went to the zoo. It is only an hour away. Hardly anything when you live in a large state. Maybe if you had said San Deigo and Oakland or something……
Matcha December 17, 2013, 2:05 pm
I guess it depends on the schedule. If the wedding’s on a Friday and they fly out Sunday I guess it’s okay. But if they fly in Friday, have the wedding Saturday afternoon/evening and fly out Sunday evening, a trip to San Diego would be difficult. That’s like 3-4 hours of driving plus whatever you want to do, and then getting back to the airport in time for their flight.
Ele4phant December 17, 2013, 8:07 pm
Whoa, hold the phone, are you telling me there are people out there who think they have claim to my *entire* weekend just because of a wedding?!?!?
If so, RSVP no in advance for every wedding invite I get for the rest of my life. Even if it was my dearest family member’s wedding with only people I know and love and it was being held in the middle of nowhere with nothing to do or see, I would not give my entire weekend up. No way, I just couldn’t handle it.
LW you are being unreasonable, she is going to the wedding, she will meet your friends, and she isn’t asking you to take *any* time away from your friends to be with hers. Seriously, you’re being a royal jerk about this.
Lindsay December 17, 2013, 10:54 pm
I feel like her going to the wedding but also seeing her friend IS a compromise. I mean, come on, going to a wedding of two strangers with a bunch of other strangers is not super fun. It is to you because they’re your friends, but you’re ignoring the fact that she’s already doing you a favor by going to the wedding. To me, the compromise is for you to understand that not everyone celebrates weddings for an entire weekend, and even if they prefer to, sometimes it isn’t feasible. I’ve had to fly in for weddings in which I probably could have gone to a brunch or something in addition, but because of time constraints, I couldn’t. Not the end of the world.
Sometimes you just have to let things that don’t matter go. You can’t always see YOU compromising as caving. Obviously, if she’s trying to travel four hours to see someone, then I can see why you’d be unsure that will work out, but if you two plan to be together for the long haul, then you’re going to have to get used to having to compromise sometimes.
LW December 18, 2013, 9:26 pm
Well, judging by some of your very harsh calls on this, I clearly did not write this very well. That being said, those that were more constrctive helped me a lot. As much as I want her to become closer to my friends, its downright selfish of me to keep her from hers. She is going to hang out with her friend all weekend and be there for just the wedding portion.
LW December 18, 2013, 9:30 pm
PS Lesbian! Kudos to those who got that hahaha. I know wikipedia says its masculine.
LW December 18, 2013, 10:16 pm
also (this wont pass moderation) but let it be known that i did NOT bold “weddings are weekend events”.
Wendy December 18, 2013, 10:28 pm
I think most people who read me regularly know that I assign a sign-off name for most LWs and that the sign-off name is always bolded.
LW December 18, 2013, 10:43 pm
Gotcha. well thank you for the advice. I was taken back by the amount of people that said I was being “controlling” over my SO.. But if thats people’s perception, I should work on that.
So we talked tonight and she’s going to drive down to her and spend the weekend with her, show up for the wedding, stay for the reception a little while, then meet back up with her after. Id be lying if I said i wasnt a little sad she will not get to mingle with the people dear to me so long, but I dont want her to think im a monster like some of these people on here do haha. at least I can downgrade my room and save some $!
Katie December 18, 2013, 11:11 pm
Honestly, that’s really shitty of your girlfriend.
I said in my comment that for a compromise to happen, you both needed to give weight to the others request. She majorly dropped the ball on that one.
LW December 18, 2013, 11:31 pm
I just let her steer the boat. Because according to the comments on DW, I am a controlling freak by wanting my girlfriend to share special moments in my life. And I dont understand why people keep saying “dude” or something!!?? Are these harsh responses seriously because people think I am a guy?!
comeoneileen December 18, 2013, 11:53 pm
I don’t think you’re being controlling. I would be seriously pissed off if I invited my boyfriend to an event that’s really important to me, and he ditched the majority of it. I don’t think it’s unreasonable for you to want your girlfriend to spend some time at the extra events. In my opinion it’s ridiculous she’s leaving the reception early and not even staying at the hotel with you. You’re attending the event as a couple. If she wanted to drive down and see her friend for a lunch or dinner or something and it works with the scheduling of wedding events etc. that’s fine, but the main reason for your trip is the wedding. It sounds like your girlfriend is looking at it the other way around and that’s really not fair to you.
Breezy AM December 28, 2013, 9:01 pm
Wow your GF sounds like a fucking bitch and I can’t believe no one has said this yet but it’s pretty obvious to me her out of town friend is more than a friend, and you’re less than a GF to her. If you can get out of taking this bitch, do so.
Bittergaymark December 19, 2013, 12:53 am
Truthfully? I’d say — Yes! Many gave you shit as they thought you were a man…
PS: Your GF seems rude and self-absorbed — to the extreme! (Even for a lesbian! I kid, I kid.) Honestly? Fuck yeah, I would NOT be pleased if I were you. Moreover, I probably wouldn’t put up with it either. Yeah. You deserve better. You deserve some one who is more than vaguely interested in your life. Find somebody HOT to fuck at the wedding, I say. Seriously.
jlyfsh December 19, 2013, 6:26 am
Honestly I didn’t read your letter with this being what your gf wanted. I read it as she wanted to see her friends at some point during the weekend. Not that she just wanted to show up for small parts of the wedding weekend. Those more clear details definitely would have affected the advice.
And I mean I know it’s easy to get hostile reading comments on DW but you have to remember the only details commenters have are what is in your letter. So if things aren’t clear in some parts, it’s going to be left up to individual interpretation to fill in the blanks. So I might read the gray area as going one way and the next commenter reads it as the other. It’s just the unfortunate reality of only having a letter to go off.
And I think that the majority of people probably weren’t assuming that your gf would want to take it this far in the other direction. There’s still time to compromise though. And find a way for her to still meet up with her friends for lunch, dinner or whatever and still be there for the majority of the wedding events.
Bittergaymark December 19, 2013, 12:14 pm
To me — so many people were projecting their own experiences onto this letter. I think MANY of the comments were simply way, way off. Worse, it appears this LW took everybody’s shitty advice and will now not only have a shitty time at the wedding… But yeah, all her old friends are going to justifiably think she’d dating a self absorbed brat.
Way to go, (most) everybody. Way to go.
jlyfsh December 19, 2013, 7:48 pm
well yeah but in general isn’t that what people to project their own experiences? and i mean unfortunately letters that are less than clear only make those projections more evident. because people aren’t necessarily sure where the LW is coming from.
CatsMeow December 19, 2013, 12:13 pm
Haha, oops. Some of us thought you were a lesbian, but then Wendy said you were a guy. I think you sounded controlling-ish solely because of the “caving in” comment. It just sounded bad. But now that you have clarified, I think your gf is the one that needs to compromise! We all thought that YOU were the one refusing to meet in the middle, but now it seems as though SHE is the stubborn one. (Also, any mention of weddings gets DWers riled up, if you didn’t know).
Ele4phant December 19, 2013, 12:11 am
Personally I feel it’s a good compromise, the girlfriend will be at the wedding, and the reception (even if it’s not for the whole time), and if I were in the LW’s shoes I’d be happy. The LW’s friends are important to her, but so is the girlfriend’s and neither gets to see these people very often, so making the most of the little time you have with those friends is legitimate to me.
*However* I don’t think it would be out of line for the LW to tell her girlfriend “It’d mean a lot to me if you stayed through the whole reception” and then let it drop if the girlfriend still wants to take off to meet back up with her bud. It’s one thing to ask graciously and accept whatever answer you get, and another to get upset, pouty, or guilt trippy if the girlfriend wants to squeeze in more time with a dear friend she never gets to see.
Fabelle December 19, 2013, 9:04 am
So with the update, yeah, I understand LW’s disappointment that the girlfriend is doing her own thing pretty much the whole time. But I’m still on the side of it being her call—she’s going to the wedding, & the reception still. It doesn’t matter that the other events were “planned”; if she doesn’t want to attend, she doesn’t want to attend. But yeah, cutting out of the reception early is kinda weird. It has a “bare minimum” feel that indicates… maybe… she doesn’t even want to go to the wedding at all? So maybe, LW, that’s the attitude you were picking up on when you wrote in?
I’m sorry you feel the responses were harsh, but that’s what happens on letters sometimes. We can only go by what’s written, & we like to debate here. SOOO yeah. Also, the “controlling” debate— I mean, only a handful even used that word. I wouldn’t put too much stock in it…
LW December 19, 2013, 12:07 pm
Ok I wont put stock into it haha. I do tend to overthink (which is probably what Im doing by thinking my friends will be offended. Thank you!
Bittergaymark December 19, 2013, 12:19 pm
No. Sadly, You are not overthinking by coming to the conclusion that your friends might be offended. They WILL be. They SHOULD be offended. As should you to be perfectly frank.
Christy December 19, 2013, 12:21 pm
Honestly, I’d be a little offended at someone leaving my wedding reception early UNLESS that was the only way she’d get to see her friend. Because like, why are you going to ditch my good friend (you, LW) to navigate a wedding alone? That’s pretty shitty.
Christy December 19, 2013, 12:22 pm
Does your girlfriend have wedding hangups? Could it relate to that?
Ele4phant December 19, 2013, 3:55 pm
What’s leaving after awhile though? Leaving after 15 minutes? Leaving before dinner is served? After the cake is cut? Or not staying until the LW is ready to pack it in for the night (assuming these is an old group of friends seeing each other after a long time they’ll probably make a long night of it)? Depending what “after a while” means, coming to the reception and leaving could be acceptable.
And ultimately, I think it’s still reasonable for the LW to ask the girlfriend to stay the whole time, but if it’s a demand or comes with some pressure, that isn’t fair. I think it’s okay for the girlfriend to want to get back to her friend. While the wedding instigated the trip, at its core it’s really about catching up with old friends, right?
Also, it was never clear to me if the LW was willing to give up some time to get to know the bestie? It seems to me to be unfair to ask the girlfriend to put in what she seems enough time to get to know her friends of she isn’t willing to return the favor. Maybe a good way to ask the girlfriend to stay for the reception the whole time would be to make it an even trade by giving up a few hours with the wedding crew to go have lunch or something with the best friend.
lets_be_honest December 19, 2013, 12:23 pm
I thnk you need to talk to your gf about this again and explain why its not cool of her to ditch YOUR entire planned weekend. Basically, you will spend an hour or two with her and she’s spending the rest elsewhere. Its fucked up. I hope you aren’t paying for her plane ticket.
Breezy AM December 28, 2013, 9:04 pm
I’m sorry I wouldn’t even take someone who intended to spend less time at the reception than I, their date, was planning to spend. You do not leave such an event without your date to go hang with someone else. Rude as all hell. LW should dump this bitch.
rachel December 19, 2013, 1:38 am
Who would want to leave a wedding reception early? That’s the best part! I get that now you feel defensive about people using the word “controlling”, but honestly I think this is too far in the other direction. I guess either way you’ll have fun with your friends.
Christy December 19, 2013, 12:18 pm
Yeah, that’s not the impression that your letter gave. I can’t believe she isn’t going to stay for the entire reception! The way your letter was written, it sounded like she just wanted to hang out with her friend for a short while, but you didn’t want her to see the friend at all. Clearly that’s not what it is.
starpattern December 19, 2013, 1:07 pm
Yeah, wow, I originally assumed that she would meet up with her friend for a meal or an evening (maybe in place of the mentioned bar outing or something?) This is pretty extreme and kind of rude of her – rude to *you* because she’s ditching you for the bulk of the trip. IMO, though, there’s not much you can do at this point, other than voice your disappointment one more time that she can’t attend the entire reception and X and Y events that are important to you (what ele4phant said).