My marriage ended 10 years ago. My two daughters are now grown up and it’s time for the eldest to get married. My youngest does not like her sister’s fiancé at all (they had a falling-out over a year ago over something trivial and haven’t spoken since). My eldest is taking the side of her hubby-to-be, and each of my daughters is too stubborn to “give in” and apologise to the other. My youngest was to be her sister’s bridesmaid but has turned down that offer and now says she won’t even attend the wedding.
How can I get my girls to come around? Do I just be happy for the one and let the other make her own decision? It’s crushing to me to think one of them won’t be involved in a huge family thing like a wedding but both of my daughters are adults and they’ve made it clear that I cannot force them to get along. I fear this will be a decision they will regret for life if they don’t make up.
You are correct. These sisters need to broker some sort of truce before this wedding. Obviously your eldest isn’t going to find a new groom just to please her sister, so it is up to your youngest to compromise.
Explain as clearly as you can that this wedding is not about her or her petty arguments. This is your eldest daughter’s special day and she wants her sister to share it with her. Whatever tiff they have had, life is simply too short for this sort of behaviour. Ask your youngest daughter how she would feel if the tables were turned. Would she be upset if her sister refused to come to her wedding? At the end of the day you can’t force this young woman to do anything but I hope she realises that if she persists with this boycott she will be seen as mean-spirited and bratish. These are not attractive qualities. No one is asking her to marry this man herself, just to witness her sister’s happiness.
In a world where siblings and loved ones can be stolen from us in all manner of dark and random ways she should rejoice that she can be part of a day that celebrates the love her sister feels. The young often tend to see life as black and white. Their eyes have not yet seen enough to understand that most things are just various shades of grey. She can feel as wronged as she likes but what will anyone gain from her moral certainty?
The moral high ground can be a very lonely place. Try to talk her down to join the rest of us in the muddy playing fields where real life happens. Whatever grudge she holds, let her throw it away in a handful of confetti. And one more time for luck: this wedding – not about her!
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