Wedding (and general family) drama..
December 15, 2008 3:51 AM   Subscribe

Wedding drama.. how do I cope with the aftermath of things said?

So we just had our wedding, which was small (less than 10 people).. In attendance were my mother and father (divorced when I was 8), 4 friends (2 of my significant other (SO) - he hadn't seen them in over 15 years, and 2 of mine - I hadn't seen in 5 years), my SO and I. And we all sat down to what was until then a beautiful dinner, and my mother decides to take the liberty of telling the story of how my SO (whom I will refer to as 'SO' from here forward) and I met, the details of which I have NOT shared with anyone except very close friends (none of whom were at the table that night) and my mother (unfortunately).

I am a very private person. The people that love ans respect me know and respect this. So, as the words, 'I would just LOVE to share how [SO] and my daughter met,' flew out of my mother's mouth, I stared her down, with a look that said, 'Don't breathe another word about my private life to ANYONE!' but she took it upon herself to continue, completely ignoring the horrified look on my face, "So, I heard about [SO] from my daughter, and you KNOW she was living with her boyfriend at the time that they met. And then she said so many wonderful things about [SO], about how spiritual he was and so on, and I said to myself, 'Oh so she and [SO] are just friends, hmf! That's a real laugh!' I said, 'But mom..' And she continued, 'Oh, it's true, I mean the relationship was long over by the time you and SO dated, and by that time you and [Ex bf] were practically just roommates,' she added with a smirk.

May I just add that the reason that I lived with my boyfriend at the time was because I HAD to get out of the house because my mother INSISTED upon having my older sister who is a COMPLETELY, destructive alcoholic and bulimic and anorexic moved in when I was living with my mother and I couldn't BEAR to live with her verbal and emotional ABUSIVENESS ANY LONGER, I couldn't DEAL with smelling the acrid alcohol and cigarette smell pouring off her body the next day after she had been out all night... that this whole time, I was trying to work on a master's degree and work and trying to stay focused and sane... that despite this, my sister while still drunk made me drive her to find her car which she 'LOST' the night before (we never found it).. that my sister finally got a DUI, that she was taken to the emergency room two other times, and had to be put in restraints on the ER bed because she was being so abusive to the nurses, that she had a concussion once after falling from drinking too much... I HAD to get out of my mother's house.

My Ex bf knew about the situation, and invited me to live with him. And I JUMPED at the opportunity to get a little sanity back into my life. Who the HELL wouldn't? My mother didn't seem to give a shit about how having my sister move in when I was already dealing with my own issues, including recovering from depression, was affecting me. It's true that I was living with my bf (now ex bf, obviously) at the time SO and I met. But god dammit, I don't want the whole GD WORLD to KNOW about my PRIVATE life (I don't care now, because am doing so 'anonymously').
Not only that, but she had NO RIGHT to tell these people (2 friends whom my I had not seen in 5 years+, the other 2, my SO had not seen in over 15 years, and who were dear friends in the past, but we had not seen them in so long) about this. I resent my mother greatly for doing this. It was actually an EXTRAORDINARILY painful breakup that I went through with my ex-bf, with my ex-bf sending me email after email about what a whore I was for dating this 'other guy', and other things I just cannot repeat, even though my Ex bf had both discussed together dating other people and agreed upon it, when we still lived together (granted we always had separate rooms the whole time we lived together and granted it was not a good idea, but I was YOUNG and didn't KNOW any better).

All of these very painful memories washed over me as she said these things, and I just sat there at the end of the table, ready to cry, and not saying a word for quite some time. I thought to myself, how could she do this to me, make me look so bad, bring out dirty laundry at my WEDDING, MY DAY when in reality, it is so GD complicated. I cried later that night in my SO's arms, when all I wanted to do was to be happy.

And weeks later, I am up at 5:30am still crying and upset about this. What do I do? I already confronted her about it. I told her in a calm manner, how much it upset me when she said all of these things. She apologized. But there is nothing that I can do to go back and repair my reputation in my friend's eyes, not that they said anything to me directly, but I could just imagine what they were thinking. And it still doesn't take back the effect that my mother made me look like a complete whore in public.. and how her words made me feel on what it supposed to be the most special day of my life. I couldn't explain the whole story and all the complexities, how my Ex bf and I had discussed and agreed to date other people, that he was working on his doctorate and would ignore my needs, and his own, and became furious at me when I just wanted to go on a walk outside when it was beautiful because he would work on math problems for hours on end, and kept gaining weight and ignoring his health, that he would keep all the blinds shut on sunny days, and would stay in his pajamas for days on end, and not bathe, and, and that I was MISERABLE for crying out loud. But God only knows WHAT was going through these people's minds and how they might see me differently now. I couldn't tell them these things.

Why is it that my mother takes it upon herself to constantly tear me down. Ever since I was a child. She even once said that I looked like a whore.. when I was just playing dress up as a child. God I felt so humiliated then and certainly now. Then later, my father starts to talk about the work he does now, and my mother turns to him in front of everyone and says, 'Oh, are the rates any BETTER than they were when you did a similar project 8 years ago?' She was being subtly bitchy. I know my mother, and I know the subtext of that question was, 'I am SO sure your projects are any more successful, because that one project you did 8 years ago fell flat on its face.' As if to oh so subtly REMIND him of a time when he FAILED. Even though she was ultimately put in charge of that project (it's complicated; they work in the same field, and although divorced, had worked on a project together).. but no one KNEW that she was put in charge of it, and my father is smart enough not to even start that conversation. What the hell is wrong with my mother?
posted by bleuberry to Human Relations (54 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
1) ask your friends what they think, don't imagine it
2) really nobody gives a shit what she said, I bet!
3) you re really emotional and upset because it's the day after your wedding. give this a few days
4) What the hell is wrong with your mother is that she obviously doesn't have a good sense of persepctive given the context you've shared here... just look at her as a person with a disability, have pity for her (as supercilious as you want!) and set boundaries. Work out a way for her to be able to stop her self telling a story when you give a code word for instance.
5) You should go coccoon with your new SO. Focus on your relationship and learn from past mistakes, don't dwell on the past.
posted by By The Grace of God at 4:02 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

What the hell is wrong with my mother?

It doesn't MATTER what's wrong with your mother. She is what she is. She said what she said. What MATTERS is how you deal with those unalterable facts. You can either continue to treat this as some kind of full blown SOAP OPERA and determine NEVER TO REST until some kind of JUSTICE or CLOSURE or RESOLUTION presents itself...

...or you can just get on with your life and trust your own friends to decide for themselves whether they're going to pay any attention to anything that comes out of the mad old dear's mouth.

I'm tipping they won't, but if they do, get better friends.
posted by flabdablet at 4:12 AM on December 15, 2008 [15 favorites]

Oh yeah. Couple more points.

I thought to myself, how could she do this to me, make me look so bad, bring out dirty laundry at my WEDDING

Airing the happy couple's dirty laundry in public is an ancient tradition. Happens at every wedding.


Oh my dear, are you still falling for that line? Weddings are not, and never have been, the bride's day; are not, and never have been, the groom's day; are, and always have been, for the benefit of the assembled multitude.

That's why you were never given any real choice about the dress, or the catering, or the venue, or the guest list (and if you truly believe you did have a choice about those things, that's probably because you didn't actually attempt to buck the system).
posted by flabdablet at 4:20 AM on December 15, 2008 [11 favorites]

Your question is "what the hell is wrong with my mother?". My question after reading what you wrote is: what the hell is wrong with you?

You seem to believe you are entitled to things you are not entitled to. You are entitled to decide where you live (within obvious limits). You are not entitled to decide who lives in your mother's home. You are entitled to invite guests to your wedding and decide whether there will be speeches. You are not entitled to dictate what your guests say.

I'm not sure what your mother's issues are. But your inflated sense of entitlement seems to me to be the root of your issues.
posted by McGuillicuddy at 4:23 AM on December 15, 2008 [38 favorites]

It sounds like you have a lot of issues with your mother and the wedding day events are just the latest example. But you should close your eyes for a moment, and take a deep breath. Remind yourself that it was only one day, and it's over. Remind yourself that what your mother says or does has no bearing on who you are, or what your friends think of you. Then let it go, and move on with your life.

If you can't do that, it's absolutely time for you to see a therapist.
posted by spockette at 4:25 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

What was the best thing about your wedding? What was the nicest thing someone said to you that day?

Was there a beautiful sunset? Did you feel beautiful? Did you feel loved by your husband?

You can choose your memories.

You can choose to remember your wedding day as a time of great love and commitment. You can remember it as the day you started a new family, with new dynamics, and also the day you left your past behind.

People say all sorts of stupid things for all sorts of reasons, but most of the time it really is thoughtlessness rather than maliciousness. Don't confront your mother, at least not now. Don't worry about what your friends thought. It's over - and rehashing every word, look and nuance will only make you distraught.

Spend the next few days trying to remember the beautiful parts of your wedding day, and make the memory that makes you happy.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 4:31 AM on December 15, 2008 [3 favorites]

What your mom did was annoying, and I can see how you would be upset. But it's over. You're an adult. People, unfortunately, have messy breakups that overlap with their new relationships all the time. Nobody is going to think you're a whore. If those old old friends of your spouse's become current friends, maybe one night when you're out to dinner with them you can make a joke of it, and give them a brief (not WITH THE DRAMA) explanation that your ex and you were not exclusive, or whatever.

If he's not going to see them for another 15 years, who cares?

You seem to worry a lot about what people think about you. You would be better off worrying about what you think about other people, and how to develop empathy and caring.
posted by miss tea at 4:31 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

Dear FSM, please can we get a sub-editor on this one. THat hurts my eyes in so many ways.

Now, to the question..

What has your mum said that's so hurtful? You met your SO (you're married, he's your husband now), whilst living with another man. Your mum made you look like a real whore? What did she do, show photos of you accepting money for sex? No. Grow up.

I'm sure no-one cares. If your friends do care, then they aren't really your friends. Any real friend would be happy, that you were happy.

Your anger at your sister seems to be a little misplaced. She has her issues, you have yours. Do you really think your mother should abandon your sister, when she was obviously going through some serious issues, in favour of you?

I think the fact that your mother apologised is enough, and you need to take this on the chin, and move on.
posted by the_epicurean at 4:34 AM on December 15, 2008

Also, these are friends you haven't seen in 5/15 years? At that rate, what makes you think they'll even remember this story the next time you see them? Do you think they are taking your private life and spilling the beans to everyone else in the world? I'll bet you anything they've already forgotten everything about that dinner other than 'hey, that was a nice dinner. good to see x again.' just remember that old quote: "worry is like a rocking chair--it gives you something to do but it doesn't get you anywhere."
posted by Mach5 at 4:37 AM on December 15, 2008 [3 favorites]

So you don't feel so alone: at MY wedding reception, which was slightly larger and included not just close friends (that I saw every day) but business contacts for both my husband and I AND my children from a previous marriage, MY mother raised her glass to make a toast and proceeded to say that she would pay my husband $1000 if we made it to our 10th anniversary. I was horrified, there was dead silence for a very long few moments and then everyone went on with their conversations.

I still see my mother and father, nobody ever has said anything to us about that comment, it was a non event in the long run. It's just a bitchy thing my mother did among hundreds of shitty bitchy things she's done in my lifeteime. She's still my mom and I have made the choice to remind myself of the good things she's done as well.

And if your wedding was that small-it seems that the friends you invited should have been pretty intimate friends, so I'm not sure why you have such an issue with them knowing details about how the 2 people (who's wedding they were attending) met. It's usually a legendary story told at weddings.
posted by hollygoheavy at 4:42 AM on December 15, 2008 [5 favorites]

Are you always the victim?

You sister is seriously ill, needing the support of her mother, and you're the one suffering? Anorexia/bulimia isn't a lifestyle choice. Your sister has serious medical problems. You lived with an ex, who was working on his doctorate, and thus didn't get dressed as often as he should and kept the blinds down, and you're the suffering one? It looks to me like you're making a big thing out of not much.

You made all these choices on your own; you are not an innocent victim. First, your living situation was one of your own choosing. If you're working on a master's degree, either you have funding from the program or you're eligible for student loans. You didn't need to live with your mother (a luxury) or with your ex-boyfriend, which was profoundly stupid, given how difficult you say the break up was. You could have looked up craigslist and got a regular roommate like everyone else if you needed to, at any time. You took the paths of least resistance and they weren't as rosy as you expected. You have to take some responsibility for that.

To me, it sounds absolutely bizarre that you didn't invite any of your closest friends to your wedding. You're surprised that details of your personal life came out during dinner? And not even very dramatic details. So you met your husband while you were living with someone else, big deal. You could very easily have interjected during that tirade and said, laughing, "Mom, I wasn't dating him at the time, yeah, I was stupidly living with my ex-boyfriend, haha, glad those days are over." And you invited your divorced parents; are you surprised that there's still some acrimony there? At least nothing more dramatic happened than a little ribbing. At my wedding dinner (also very small), my husband's stepfather announced that my husband had been single for so long that he had started to think he was gay. People say stupid and embarrassing things at weddings. So what?

Look: you're out of the stupid situation with your ex-boyfriend. I presume you're out of the house your sister lives in. You're married, presumably to a nice guy. Why on earth are you upset? These friends of yours at the wedding don't appear in your regular life anyway. You've confronted your mother, she apologized. Look at how lucky you are in your life and get on with it.

You seem super worried that people will think you're a whore. Perhaps this is something you should explore with a therapist.
posted by Hildegarde at 4:47 AM on December 15, 2008 [26 favorites]

1. You're completely over-reacting.
2. There is nothing wrong with your mother, telling embarrassing stories about their children and taking snipes at their ex-spouses is perfectly normal parental behavior
3. If your friend's think you're a whore because you were living with someone else when you met your husband theres something wrong with them. It happens all the time.
4. Get over yourself. I know you're upset but do you realise how incredibly self-involved you sound? You clearly have issues regarding your family that you should probably work through with a therapist. The fact that you think your mother did something wrong in letting your sister live with her suggest that you think you are superior/more important and deserving than she is. From the sounds of it, your sister needed parental assistance way more than you did.
5. Paragraphs

In all honesty, I find your reaction to your mother's rather tame story so very over the top and bizarre that I'm tempted to believe theres more going on than you're telling us. But we can really only base our responses on what you've told us.
posted by missmagenta at 4:54 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

Seriously? You had a wedding with only FOUR friends invited, and you think your mother should have realised that this was not made up of any of your very close friends? That they were people who weren't allowed to know an amusing story about how you met? That's you not being normal. Why didn't you invite any close friends?

And nthing bizarre victim/entitlement complex - it made life hard for you that your mother let your alcoholic sister live with her? Maybe she should have thrown you out of the house for being depressed, that can be tough for other people to live with. Were you paying rent to your ex? If so, that was stupid and you should have found somewhere else to pay rent. If not, then you had no right to complain that he kept the curtains closed and didn't dress.

You need therapy, because you sound like you have massive issues with your family. And if you don't deal with it you're going to make other people miserable, like crying on your new husband on your wedding night because you hate your mother and invited her to your wedding anyway and she upset you.
posted by jacalata at 5:12 AM on December 15, 2008 [3 favorites]

It's difficult to read your story and not come to the conclusion that there is more something up with you than with everyone in your story. I don't wanna do that, because it's obvious that you're really pretty upset by everything. I do want to point out some things that seem strange to some of us that maybe you could self-analyze:

1. The only people at your wedding were people you haven't seen in 5/15 years. This leads us to believe that you either don't have any other friends or that, for some reason, you didn't *want* to invite your every day friends.

2. You don't want your friends to know your private life. I mean nobody does, the secret stuff. How you met your husband? Come on, that's a great story that all your friends should know. You should be laughing about how you and your ex lived together when you met the man of your dreams. Regardless, total and complete over reaction here.

3. You made the decision to move in with your ex, with whom you obviously still had issues, especially following such a painful breakup. First, I can't blame the dude for thinking he was gonna get back with you after obviously being with you for a while and letting you live in his house, etc. Not saying that he SHOULD have thought that, but I can see it. There were 10,000 other possible conclusions to where you could live because...

4. You say you were working on your masters degree. I realize that people often live at home through their PhD's, and that circumstances are what they are---but if you're old enough to have a bachelors, and you're old enough to be working on a masters, then you're old enough to realize that the destructive lifestyle choices of your sister are both more important and NOT done to make you have a pain in the ass day, as WELL as to realize that there were other housing options for you all over the place.

That being said, I don't think that you're a preposessed little snot. I think that you've got too much going on inside your head, and for the sake of your new husband and yourself you NEED to get some counseling and you NEED to get some perspective. Your family sounds kinda wonky, but not any more wonky than the rest of us. Perhaps, and I don't mean this in a mean way, your obvious lack of distinct friends has left you with nobody to talk to and leaves everything bouncing around inside your own head, getting louder and louder and driving you nuts.

Also, one more thing about people and what they think: Fuck 'em. Fuck 'em and move on. Friends will always love you, enemies will always look for weakness. Most folks just won't care. Sad but true that the minutae of your life simply doesn't even register on most folks radar, even your friends.
posted by TomMelee at 5:15 AM on December 15, 2008 [16 favorites]

This will sound a bit harsh, but I think you need to try to gain some perspective. You can't even sort these problems into paragraphs. (That's not a judgment about your writing style/skills. You're well educated; I'm sure you can write.) It is an observation, that your mental state isn't allowing you to process this in an organized way. You're still in a me-me-me-me-me-me place with all this. You never even mentioned how this impacted your husband. It was his wedding day and his friends too. He had a hysterical, crying wife on his wedding night. Yet, you don't mention your husband's emotions at all.

Addressing your specific points, here are some observations.

• I'm not sure why you resent your mother trying to help your sister. It sounds as though your mother allowed you and your sister to live with her when you needed help. You had depression and financial issues; your sister had her own problems. Yet, you seem to absolutely hate your mother for providing your sister with a home because it disrupted your life. Maybe your sister is does have mental health and chemical dependence issues, but that's a reason she needs her family. There is a time when you cut people off for being toxic in your life. However, your mother was not there. It's her home, she can decide which of her adult children live with her.

• You don't dispute the facts of the story. I'm not sure why you invited these 10 people to your wedding (4 of who you hadn't seen in 5-15 years), but I'm going to make a leap here and say that you are close to them. Is there reason you'd want to lie to these people about the way you met your husband? You could split hairs and say you didn't want to lie, you just wanted to hide the truth from the 10 people you're closest to in life.

• Your mom's toast was essentially. "Love can find you at an inconvenient time. My daughter was with someone else when she met her husband. Her husband is good and spiritual and kind. I was hoping they'd get together and hinted about it. Now they are married." I don't see the horror. You were living with another man when you met your husband. I'm not judging you; I don't think you're a whore. I don't think your mother called you a whore in her wedding toast. Your mother may be a pill, but I don't see evidence she intended to be hurtful.

• Your divorced parents have a professional relationship and discussed a past (failed) project. They're divorced people stuck in a room for a few hours with no buffer. If they stayed to professional topics, then that's better than a rehash of their failed marriage. Did you expect that they'd spend the entire wedding taking about you? Or more correctly, talking about the sanitized story of you.

• It sounds as though you have a skewed perception of how often and how judgmentally people think about you. These 4 friends likely think, "Good for those two." At worst they may think, "Well, I wouldn't have picked her for him, but I hope they're happy." Most likely, they don't think about you at all. Even your wedding day you are not the center of everyone's universe.

Breathe deeply and try to get some perspective on this. Is this really as horrid as you are imagining? You've finished your degree, met a wonderful man and are starting a life together. I genuinely believe that when you're able to put this into perspective, you won't be as angry and shamed.
posted by 26.2 at 5:44 AM on December 15, 2008 [6 favorites]

you re really emotional and upset because it's the day after your wedding. give this a few days

Just wanted to point out that the OP says this is weeks after the event

And weeks later, I am up at 5:30am still crying and upset about this.
posted by missmagenta at 5:51 AM on December 15, 2008

You have major unresolved issues with your mother. Until you resolve them, she will continue to have an enormous impact on you simply by her presence.

Mind you, I don't think your mom is innocent, nobody should call their child "a whore" for playing dress up. But the thing about being a child is that it's in the past. You're an adult now and you need to come to terms with how your mother is, how it affected you and then move on.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:01 AM on December 15, 2008

Frankly, I don't see what's so wrong about the story, for one. And for two, you didn't even say anything to your mother! You just had what you call a 'horrified' look on your face and hoped that she would read your mind to stop talking.

This has nothing to do with your wedding. You know that, right?
posted by sugarfish at 6:01 AM on December 15, 2008

I don't think what your Mom said was so bad. OK, maybe it was something that you feel is a big deal and better left unsaid but hey, if I had a dime for every time my Mom said something embarrassing about me in front of friend I'd be a rich man. I've learned a long time ago to laugh them off.

Don't let such a minor incident spoil the memories of your wedding or, for that matter, your relationship with your Mom. It wasn't that bad, it's over and there's nothing you can do to change it now. Don't dwell on it.
posted by gfrobe at 6:08 AM on December 15, 2008

It's just a bitchy thing my mother did among hundreds of shitty bitchy things she's done in my lifeteime.

Highilighting this. People deal with stress and new situations in a lot of different ways. My guess is that this is not unusual behavior for your mom and my guess is that this is her coping strategy. Coming as someone with a similar parents I'd like to sympathize with you. It's awkward basically never knowing if your parent is going to come out and say something very inappropriate and uncaring especially when you're in a stressful and very you-focussed situation.

That said, one of the great thigns abotu being an adult is that creepy things other people say don't have to reflect badly on you. Your friends likely know that. When this has happened to me, I'd usually be horrified and try to overexplain things to my friends and they'd tend to be "Eh, too bad your Mom is crazy, that must be really stressful for you" They know I didn't choose her, they know I'm trying to maintain some sort of relationship with her and they know that in order to do that, I sometimes have to manage the fallout of her saying things that are totally not cool.

I used to react more like you did. "HOW could she DO this?!?!" and I just, at some point, realized that I would never
- know
- fix her
and I had a choice to make that was pretty binary. Take her as is and realize that was basically okaying the occasional crappy comment, or freeze her out and deal with the fallout from that. I chose to have her around and sometimes she tells people terrible "funny" stories about me because, I guess, she's nervous and self-centered and now I get a little more embarassed for her than aghast for myself because hey, she looks crazy and why is she embarassing me like that, that's really petty behavior. And I type out comments to AskMe basically reaffirming this sort of thing when I'm not all OMG about it and that really helps too.

So, I am sorry abot your wedding but honestly, go you, you're married, your Mom apologized, go live your life without her or decide to have her in your life on your terms. I think you've gone through a really stressful part of your life [weddings are stressful even perfect wonderful weddings] and you took a gamble on your mom that you thought might not pan out and you lost. That sucks but it's not "up at night crying weeks later" sucks. You probably need to work out your own feelings about your mom and why she has this level of power over you.

At the end of the day, no one knows what is wrong with your mom and there's a good chance you can't fix her. Knowing that, what to do next is in your court.
posted by jessamyn at 6:10 AM on December 15, 2008 [10 favorites]

Your mother's speech was totally normal for a wedding. None of the guests will think badly about you because of it.

Obviously you found it humiliating and upsetting because you knew the backstory. If your mother knew how you react to being reminded about that time, then yes it was a dick manouvre to bring it up in public, but believe us when we say your reputation is undamaged. The guests did not hear the same speech you did.

What you think they heard: Let me tell you about our fucked up family and how Sister's abuse issues drove a depressed Bleuberry into the arms of her unwashed, shut-in ex-boyfriend who shredded her self-esteem and called her a whore for dating SO. And today they're getting married, CONGRATULATIONS BLEU!

What they actually heard: Let me tell you about how much Bleuberry loves SO. Right from when they first met she used to talk endlessly about all his good qualities. Even before they were actually a couple it was obvious that they were made for each other. And today they're getting married, CONGRATULATIONS BLEU!

This should not be waking you at 5.30 weeks later. Seriously. If this continues to be traumatic for you, seek help.
posted by the latin mouse at 6:24 AM on December 15, 2008 [4 favorites]

Once upon a time, an ex-boyfriend became livid that I was seeing someone (we'd been broken up for months, and he'd already dated someone else, but whatever). He spread the nastiest, most vicious lies about me to all our friends and I was devastated at what they'd think of me. I frantically called one, pleading my innocence, and he stopped me cold.

He said, "Peanut, we're your friends, and we know you. Anyone who would believe terrible things about you isn't really your friend, so what do you care what they think. What Ex is doing is making HIM look bad, not you."

If your friends are adults, they understand that your mom was inappropriate and looking for attention, and that all relationships are more complicated than they appear to be on the surface.

Let it go, but be prepared to face her down the next time she starts telling an inappropriate story about you in public. Don't just stare at her, say something to her. You're an adult now, you can set boundaries and refuse to be treated a certain way, but not when you're whining about things after the fact.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 6:27 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

All I know is that if I heard the same story at a friend's wedding, I wouldn't think they were a "whore." It's not like you met your husband working in a brothel or something. It's never been uncommon for someone to fall in love with someone else while in a crumbling relationship, or while in an awkward living situation.
I'd probably think, "Hmm, her mom seems like kind of a mean bitch."

Nthing that you need to work out your issues with your mom. A lot of us have parents and other relatives who do or say rude/embarrassing things in front of our friends/SOs, etc. You said you hadn't seen these people in 5-15 years, so is it really crucial to your friendship that they know this small fact about you that really is not that weird?
posted by fructose at 6:28 AM on December 15, 2008

Hey, it can be difficult to explain just how acutely a mom can twist the knife and horrify a daughter, I get this. But I can't imagine why you feel that your friends would somehow have tapped into believing...what, insinuations that you think that your mother made about your morals? Honey, we've all got parents.

You seem to be carrying around an awful lot of contempt and anger for the people in your life. This is what you've communicated to us in a nutshell: Your father's stupid. Your mother is a malicious harpy. Your sister is disgusting. (Not ill and disturbed?) Your ex-boyfriend is a jerk who gave you a safe place to stay but then heaped verbal abuse upon you. Your friends are so judgmental that your reputation is ruined.

You may not want to hear this, but I think that the real answer to your question may be that you're paranoid. Your mother "made you look like a whore in public" -- by divulging that the beginning of your relationship with your SO was a little messy? How does that equal whore? At a small private dinner? How does that equal public? This doesn't add up.

I think you need to step back, calm down, and stop letting your frustration with your mother overwhelm your sense of reason and your emotions (you're giving her an awful lot of power!) What does your husband think? And what do you think of him? Is he going to turn into the bad guy if he doesn't agree that you should be dwelling on this?
posted by desuetude at 6:39 AM on December 15, 2008

Try not to be extremely embarrassed by what your mother said. I read about a similar situation in the Weddings section of the New York Times. It was actually in the how the couple met story and it wasn't that big of a deal.

I'm certain that most people were horrified by what your mother said and that she said it. They probably don't think any less of you or any differently of you. So don't worry anymore about it and keep a distance from your mother. She's obviously not trustworthy.
posted by anniecat at 6:47 AM on December 15, 2008

Nthing everyone that says that it was most likely very clear that your mother was saying things that were inappropriate. they were inappropriate because they made you uncomfortable not because they made you look like a whore. When I first read her comment, I thought that she was trying to say that she could tell you two were meant for each other. Obviously in a way that wasn't sensitive.

To me the real problem isn't that comment but your relationship with your mother. It sounds very trying for you. Communicating to her how you feel directly is healthy but doesn't guarantee that she is ever going to change.
posted by Gor-ella at 6:56 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

But god dammit, I don't want the whole GD WORLD to KNOW about my PRIVATE life (I don't care now, because am doing so 'anonymously').

The whole goddamned world doesn't know anything. A few of your friends might know a few more details about your life, but they clearly don't even know the whole story. And they're your friends. Quite frankly, acting ashamed and secretive when you have no reason to be either gives people power over you that they shouldn't have. Hold your head high and reassure yourself that you've done nothing wrong and have nothing to be ashamed of. And forgive your mother. She's already apologized.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 7:03 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

You aren't crying for what she did at the wedding. You're crying because of everything that she did back then. You need a therapist so you can learn to accept and deal with feelings of hurt, anger and betrayal towards your own mother. Its gonna take a while but you will be a lot better off when you work through it all.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:39 AM on December 15, 2008

the one thing in these comments that I disagree with is this right here:

Weddings are not, and never have been, the bride's day; are not, and never have been, the groom's day; are, and always have been, for the benefit of the assembled multitude.

No, the wedding day IS the bride and groom's day, flabdablet. Because everyone else is just at a party -- but the bride and groom are getting married. So their experience is somewhat more important.

However. My point also applies to bleuberry -- your wedding day was the day you married your husband. Yes, it's unfortunate that your mother told you a story you were embarrassed by (although, I think she saw it as far less embarrassing than it was), but -- you can look at it this way. You can choose to see your anniversary as "the day my mother told a story about me to eight people" or "the day I married my wonderful husband." Are you really going to let what your mother said overshadow the fact that this was also the day you married your husband? Is what your mother said really so hurtful that you are letting it completely overshadow the fact that "this man has promised to be by my side for the rest of both our lives because that's how much she loves me"?

Honestly, if someone loved me that much, I wouldn't GIVE a crap what my mother was saying about me. I'd grumble, sure, but I'd remind myself of the blessing I do have and realize how much, much better that was.

So I do think you are overreacting -- not because I don't think your mother didn't commit a faux pas. Because she sort of did. But -- what she did is in no way big enough to overshadow the fact that you are now married to a man you are supposed to love, and even though you actually are now married to the guy, that fact is taking second place to what your mother said. That's...rather a skewed perspective on things, and you may want to think about why "what my mother thinks of me" is a more important thing to you than "I am married now".
posted by EmpressCallipygos at 7:40 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

See a therapist, seriously. I am not trying to dismiss your very real feelings, but crying about it weeks later and the drama that you have heaped on this does not seem healthy at all (and I can't imagine your new husband is thrilled with it either---it was HIS day too and your obsession with how this (in my opinion) minor infraction ruined the otherwise great day isn't fair).

You seem to have made up stories in your head (i.e. But there is nothing that I can do to go back and repair my reputation in my friend's eyes, not that they said anything to me directly, but I could just imagine what they were thinking. And it still doesn't take back the effect that my mother made me look like a complete whore in public..) that do not bear much of a resemblance to reality. You are assuming your reputation is sullied. You are assuming your mom made you look like a complete whore. From what you described, these things do not appear to be true. They are just stories you have made up, IMO.

I, too, am a private person. I, too, have a mom that has said some things I wish she hadn't (I do not have a mom, however, who has EVER apologized). I, too, have made stories up in my head. I get it.

But I trust that my friends love me and would not believe anything unfair or untrue, I do not cry over the stories I conjure as I quickly recognize that they are just stories, not reality, and when all else fails, I have a therapist that helps me see that the stories I tell myself are about me, not someone else. And re-read PhoBWanKenobi's response. It has great insight.
posted by murrey at 7:44 AM on December 15, 2008

This is what you've communicated to us in a nutshell: Your father's stupid. Your mother is a malicious harpy. Your sister is disgusting. (Not ill and disturbed?) Your ex-boyfriend is a jerk who gave you a safe place to stay but then heaped verbal abuse upon you.

I'd say her description is actually spot on. When someone does those things to you when you are young, they are all of those bad things you called them. Its one thing to call a stranger or acquaintance you see abusing others as "ill and disturbed" but it is quite another to call one's own abuuser that. Desuetude has it exactly wrong. We have a defense mechanism called *anger* designed to help us protect ourselves. When we have to deploy it against the ones we are equally programmed to love, the psyche gets all twisted and turned around in all sorts of ways trying to cope.

So Bleuberry, ignore the pile-on above by a lot of folks. They do not understand. Go to a therapist and get in touch with all that grief and anger you feel so that you can stop reacting to it all of the time. I'm gonna also guess you might have anxiety issues too. It will help with those too.
posted by Ironmouth at 7:53 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

I wonder: are you genuinely embarrassed about or ashamed of the circumstances under which you met your husband? Considering how much your mother's story upset you, that seems a real possibility. I'm all for respecting privacy, but it seems odd that none of your close friends would know that you'd coincidentally met your now-husband while living with someone else - and, though it's not clear, it sounds like you guys were already exes, so no harm no foul. And it seems very strange that you'd insist on hiding that from the few people you invited to your wedding. How Did You Meet is a pretty common question for newlyweds, and from what you've told us your circumstances don't seem particularly scandalous - though, since your ex was verbally abusive toward you, they might certainly feel a lot worse.

I worry that if you really want to hide that part of your past - the part in which you began your relationship - you may not be being honest with yourself; you're trying to bury things instead of working through them. You've grown as a person since then, and you're wiser and more responsible. But maturity isn't about hiding or denying the mistakes you've made in the past; it's about acknowledging them and learning from them.

You seem very worried about other people thinking negatively of you, and I would guess this is why you don't like to talk about your personal life. If you do seek therapy, I'd suggest you work on this.
posted by Metroid Baby at 8:15 AM on December 15, 2008

Take a step back and say who cares! These friends of yours are/were a big part of your life. They obviously know how your mother is. They more than likely took your back ground story with a grain of salt.

My two cents on your mom is that she is jealous subconsciously of you and your marriage. If you look at it, the reason she didn't mind your drunken sister is because your mom might have seen herself as better than her. She might also see her as someone who needs her. You on the other hand have a grasp on life and have your head on straight. You got your degree, a good relationship, your own place, and you were getting married. She might have not directly felt inferior to you and told the story to make herself feel better. Does your mother love you? Yes. Was what she said on purpose? Maybe? Should you be focused on it for weeks to come and worry about it? No. Remember you are the one who is married and with someone you love. Focus on how happy that makes you.

Now I am not going to say "see a therapist!" but it might be a good idea if you had someone to listen to you while you vent. You cannot hold all these issues in. They are turning corrosive in your system. You need to get them out. I hope being able to come on here helped to relieve some of the stress. Well that's my two cents... I know it's not worth much but if you keep collecting it you might get a cup of coffee one day.
posted by Mastercheddaar at 8:26 AM on December 15, 2008

You know, you're all worried that your MOM blabbed about YOUR PRIVATE LIFE and now the WORLD knows it...not that any of us know you in real life, but you've spread the story much more by asking this question, than she ever did. So I'd gander that your issue is something else, not just your private life being public.

And really, who you were living with is pretty public anyway. It's not liek she spilled the beans that you've go herpes or something.
posted by notsnot at 8:34 AM on December 15, 2008

[comment removed - if you'd like to argue with other people you can MeMail them, thank you.]
posted by jessamyn at 8:41 AM on December 15, 2008

I have my own take on the_latin_mouse's "what people actually heard" section:

What they actually heard [and what they were thinking]: blah blah blah [I wonder if the dinner will be good?] blah blah blah [I hope it's not fish] blah blah blah [Oh crap, I got a spot of wine on my dress. Will it come out? Is it low enough that no one will notice?] blah blah blah [Susie has soccer practice on Monday the same time Bobby has trumpet lessons. Did John say he could pick Susie up? Must remember to ask him later.] blah blah blah CONGRATULATIONS BLEU [Oh, time to applaud as if I had been listening.]

Really, it would shock me if anyone other than you and your mother were even listening to the speech. Think back to other weddings you've been to recently. Can you even remember any of the speeches?
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 9:01 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

I too feel your main challenge is the tape looping inside your head. That's anxiety. I don't mean to be glib, but sometimes it helps to wallow a bit to break the logjam. Go see Rachel Getting Married if you can still find it in theaters near you.
posted by thinkpiece at 9:03 AM on December 15, 2008

Ironmouth, I think we basically agree. You feel that she needs to work through her anger and anxiety because it's controlling her life. So do I.

bleuberry, please don't take my response as disbelief. I didn't mean that your characterizations of her family and friends are completely erroneous, I was trying to point out that the perspective you're communicating about all of the players in this situation is terribly negative and pessimistic, so much so that you seem to interpret a whole lot of things (including the behavior of an out-of-control sister who is likely only thinking of herself, not you!) as evidence that the entire world is against against you. Seeing the world in this light is exhausting. Please consider getting some help.
posted by desuetude at 9:27 AM on December 15, 2008

You're having an extreme reaction to something really minor. You need to get some counselling so you can work on developing a healthier and more balanced perception of others and yourself. People do say insensitive things sometimes. You're probably no exception. You have to let it go for the sake of relationships with those you care about, for the sake of your own happiness, and because you can't expect others to forgive you if you're someone who never forgives.
posted by orange swan at 9:33 AM on December 15, 2008

bleuberry, I just want to pull out the common thread in these many answers in case you feel overwhelmed by them.

The clear consensus is that:
1. you are not a whore
2. the story your mother told would not make a reasonable person conclude that you are a whore
3. it is extremely unlikely that anyone at that table thought less of you because of the story

1. you sound very unhappy
2. you can avoid this unhappiness in the future, perhaps through therapy

And from me:

You describe yourself as very, very private. It's clear that you make a lot of assumptions about what people think about you. These seem pretty negative. If you don't share them with your friends, they can never correct you. If I were at your wedding (CONGRATULATIONS!) and you came up to me and said, "I can't believe my mom told that story! The way she put things really made me sound like a whore!" I would make saucer eyes at you and say, "are you kidding? That was a charming story, and I didn't hear anything in it that was whore-ish!" Then, you would know that there was no problem.

Give your friends the opportunity to correct your assumptions about their thoughts.
posted by prefpara at 9:49 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

I don't think you're overreacting, exactly. Given your history with your mother's behavior, you're understandably sensitive to her disregarding your feelings and subtly insulting you. It sounds like you're especially sensitive to her implying you're promiscuous, which given that she called you a whore as a child is an entirely appropriate reaction.

However, your other guests probably didn't even notice what happened: it's definitely not keeping them awake at night weeks later, so I don't think it should keep you up either. Is it more useful to you to hang on to this, or to let it go?

While I think it would be a good idea for you to stop lingering on that moment, I also think you can take one thing away from this. Don't tell your mother personal things any more, if you can help it. If this was her only slip, then fine, but it sounds like she has a long history of making sniping remarks at you and your family, and at a certain point she forfeits the right to know every detail of your life.

I would say to work on developing both a more superficial relationship with her and a deeper relationship with others who are more trustworthy. It sounds like you don't have close friends who live in your area: can you start trying to make new friends or to see the ones you already have more often?
posted by lemuria at 9:55 AM on December 15, 2008 [1 favorite]

I can kind of see why you were upset. That being said, I feel as you totally overreacted and it's a little odd that you are still fuming at this.

Maybe YOU were embarassed by what your mother said, but I am willing to bet your other guests didn't care about how you and your SO met. Seriously, they aren't up at night thinking about what a horrible person you are. I wouldn't even bring it up with the friends, it's not that big of a deal.

While I don't know your mother, it doesn't sound like she was trying to embarass or hurt you. Everyone LOVES to tell those proposal/how we met stories, so I really think that's all it was. Some people can be pretty private about them, but it all eventually comes out.

It seems like you are still mad at your mother over your previous living situation and probably many other things. Maybe that's why this situation is getting blown way out of proportion.

You're happy and you're married right? The story of how you met is actually kind of a cool and interesting story!! I would just own that story and run with it.
posted by pdx87 at 9:55 AM on December 15, 2008

Hey, Bleu: best wishes on your recent wedding.

Now, for what it's worth, since this has been a big "dog pile on the Blue" fest, here's what I'm hearing:

Planning this wedding was hell on earth. There were fights and arguments and yes I bought into the myth that it was my day, and didn't realize what saying "yes" was going to mean, and an alarming percentage of mothers and daughters have terrible fights either in the time leading up to the wedding, at the wedding, and AFTER the wedding, even.

Everyone expects someone to do something inappropriate at weddings, I think. I've yet been to one where it hasn't happened.

I think you are tired and stressed out and maybe having a little bit of cold feet, or are just plain scared even if you don't have cold feet, marriage is a commitment. And seeing old friends and relatives who haven't seen you in forever but still think of you as 5 or 8 or 22 or anything but what and who you are *right now*. And the wedding machine can and will take the strongest woman and squeeze her into a blubbering helpless mess.

I don't know why parents feel the need to invoke previous relationships at weddings, but they do. Either it's because they aren't sure their kid made the right choice now or because they are relieved their kid made the right choice now, I think it's one of those. I went to a wedding of a friend where her father invited business associates he had previously been trying to get her to date. What do you SAY in cases like that? I mean, why do that to the poor girl? But he did, and thought it was okay.

If you have issues with your mom, they're going to come out when you get married. If your mom has issues with her daughter, they're going to come out when she gets married. Lots of sound psychological reasons for this.

I'm not sure this is a 'OMG SHE HAS SERIOUS ISSUES WITH HER MOM, GO GET HELP NOW' but rather everything coming to the surface during an already stressful time. I bet planning your wedding was a tad hellish, and maybe you spent more money than you wanted to, and maybe the dress wasn't exactly the one that you wanted to wear, and you couldn't invite who you wanted to invite, etc. etc. etc.

It's a dreadful process, and now you're trying to figure out what it means to be Mrs. Bleu, instead of the former Ms. Bleu, too.

Give yourself a little time. Don't try to talk to anyone about this yet. Calm down, get back into reality, and then, if you still think it's a problem, you should go talk to a therapist and work out how to handle your family. But give yourself some time. you already just went through a crapload.
posted by micawber at 10:09 AM on December 15, 2008

I was trying to point out that the perspective you're communicating about all of the players in this situation is terribly negative and pessimistic, so much so that you seem to interpret a whole lot of things (including the behavior of an out-of-control sister who is likely only thinking of herself, not you!) as evidence that the entire world is against against you. Seeing the world in this light is exhausting.

Seconded. What happens when you are a kid and your parents attack rather than support you and fail to work to raise you is that the world (which is your family at that age) is against you. In that situation, your defense mechanisms make a lot of sense. The problems start in the outside world, because often those methods are counter-productive. That's why the "get over it" crowd doesn't provide the best advice. The problem isn't a single comment, its that the poster has a ton of unresolved issues with people who hurt her who should have been helping. The comment from your mom is just representing a ton of crap you haven't worked through.

For a long time I resisted therapy that sought to reach the past, because I felt it was in the past. Then it dawned on me that the problem wasn't that I needed catharsis, it was that I needed to discard ways of reacting to adversity from back then which were hurting my ability to cope with the world now.
posted by Ironmouth at 10:16 AM on December 15, 2008 [2 favorites]

I can sort of see why what your mom said upset you to some extent - you didn't want to have to think about your ex-bf on your wedding day, and you didn't want to be reminded of the bad choice you had made. But your reaction seems way over the top.

The thing that concerns me more, though, is that the only people outside your family who came to your wedding were people you hadn't seen in many years - and the same is true for your husband. To me this indicates that you may have some emotional problems that are causing you not to have friends in your life, and this in turn is making everything seem magnified because you don't have anyone you can turn to for a reality check (besides your husband) making things awfully insular and any warped thoughts that develop don't get straightened out by running them by others.

I'd say therapy would be a great idea, or else if you feel you can go ahead and do it, joining groups focused around a hobby or volunteering activity so that you can make friends. I may be way off base here, and maybe you didn't have other people at your wedding for a different reason, but that's what leapt out at me from your question. If I'm wrong, I apologize.
posted by hazyjane at 11:04 AM on December 15, 2008

Marriages are full of ups and downs, and the first year of marriage is filled with particularly stressful hurdles.

This is your first hurdle. No, I don't mean what your mom said or did; this isn't actually about your mom. Your first hurdle is your response. This event -- which to nearly every outsider seems pretty much a non-event -- clearly touched some very raw nerve in you, which has triggered a highly dramatic, negative response that has become the central emotion of your wedding and the first weeks of your marriage.

I would point out that this is happening not only to you, but also to your new husband -- because you are now a team. So now you need to play for your team by finding a way to stop a relatively small event from blowing up into the defining trauma of the first stage of your married life together. Given everything you've written, I'm going to nth everyone who suggests that you need to explore some significant issues with a therapist.
posted by scody at 11:09 AM on December 15, 2008

First, thanks so much to everyone who provided balanced, sometimes a little sassy, and empathetic comments. They have for the most part put things into perspective for me. I don't have too many close friends in this new town I can talk to.. My closest friends are all tied up with finals and working and I don't want to burden them with my issues right now. The great majority of you have been there for me the way a good friend would, very no holds barred, this is the way things are, and you need help kind of way. My sincerest thanks.

A few things, I did vacillate between feeling very sorry for my mother, having a great deal of empathy for her, and then being upset and feeling 'wounded'. And I was tired, very tired, during and after the wedding, and after that and a few toasts so to speak, well. It took at least a week before I felt normal again, and now am just sorting through those things that came up. I wonder if anxiety/depression issues are creeping back in and if that may be a component.

One day I hope to laugh this all off.. I kept trying to separate myself from the situation and think of it as a ridiculously funny and awkward screenplay. Per my sister, I certainly do NOT think I am entitled to decide who lives in my mother's house. I was venting and upset. My sister is in her late 40s, and refuses to get help for her issues. It is frustrating for me and my entire family... would have liked someone to look up to... feel/felt very alone/isolated. I have tried to have empathy for her, but it is difficult after someone has repeatedly violated your trust time and time again. Will probably go back into therapy (have had a good deal of therapy.. and apparently need a whole lot more.. maybe even Alanon).

By The Grace of God - Thank you for your beautiful, concise comments. 3) you re really emotional and upset because it's the day after your wedding. give this a few days -- You are completely right! Exhaustion can do amazing things to your perspective.

flabdablet - Although I do not completely agree with the fact that it was never 'my
day'.. I did get a good laugh from reading your posts.

Sweetie Darling - Thank you so much for reminding me to focus on the good times!!! You are right.

hollygoheavy - Oh my goodness. I am SO sorry that this happened. I don't feel so alone. Thank you for sharing your story. I don't know you, but a hug to you.

Hildegarde - I did not live with my Ex when we were Exs to begin with. He was my BF at the time that we lived together. I do not think you quite understand. And I certainly did not know about Craig's List.. and am not sure if that is a safe way for a young (and at the time, to an extent, sheltered and confused) woman to find a safe and good place to live. Was also dealing with depression while I lived with my mother, and although it is not an excuse, I think it may have affected the choices I made and the options I saw, but I learned from them. Please also remember my BF invited me to live with him. Please don't take this the wrong way, but I feel the tone of your answer to be somewhere between being judgmental and trying to sort out the facts and am sorting through how to analyze it. I did invite my closest friends.. they were not able to come because we planned the wedding in 6 weeks and it was very far from where they live unfortunately.

missmagenta - my sister is in her late 40s. I don't know about her needing parental assistance. But she certainly does need help. You see she is my older sister, someone I thought I could look up to but who has hurt me and other members of our family and herself through our lives.

TomMelee - Thank you SO MUCH for starting out your comments the way you did. Again, per your number 1, I did invite my closest friends, but they were not able to attend as the wedding was very far from where they live and the wedding was planned in only 6 weeks. 3. You made the decision to move in with your ex.. I did not move in with my Ex.. He was my boyfriend at the time when he invited me to live with him.. I'm sorry if I didn't make that clear.. I was having a moment when I wrote this.

gfrobe - That is SO WONDERFUL that you have the ability to laugh these things off now! Wow. I think I would like to set this as my long term goal. :)

Mastercheddaar - I was thinking that subconsciously, these may be some of the issues at hand, to a degree, and may have been, in part, some of the forces at work, so to speak. I am dealing with the issues, so I do not think that they are turning corrosive in my system. In FACT, I think that the simple process of getting this post out there and having a sounding board has been quite healing in a sense.

jessamyn - Wow, thank you so much. You are right. You are right. You are right. :)

thinkpiece - What you said about the tape looping inside of my head and anxiety is very true. Have dealt with anxiety issues since childhood. Thank you for the movie suggestion.

fructose - You really made me laugh.

Ironmouth - You are really sweet.. there are a lot of old issues floating about, including anxiety, grief and anger, and that I need (more) help. Thank you.

murrey - I didn't cry weeks later in front of my husband. I did it quietly, in the other room while he was sleeping. But you're right. I need help.

desuetude - I never said that my father was stupid, etcetc.

Again, all the best to everyone. Am continuing to heal in a good way every day.
posted by bleuberry at 11:17 AM on December 15, 2008

bleuberry, apologies, I misread (even despite multiple readings) the line about your dad "being smart enough not to even start that conversation."
posted by desuetude at 11:45 AM on December 15, 2008

bleuberry, your attitude in your follow-up is great -- it should serve you well! Best of luck.
posted by scody at 11:50 AM on December 15, 2008

bleu, i just wanted to say very quickly that it seems to me from reading your post that you carry a lot of guilt linked to the ex-BF situation (it shows through b/c of you trying to justify why you lived with him and why you left him). i think that his reaction to you leaving him may have a lot to do with the feelings of guilt you may be experiencing. i just wanted to say that it's perfectly ok to leave someone when you don't see a future with them. you shouldn't be ashamed or feel guilty, or need to justify it to anyone.... sometimes it just doesn't work out.
posted by barrakuda at 12:03 PM on December 15, 2008

Thanks lemuria. I think you understand the crux of the issue. And I will try to work on a few promising, beautiful relationships that are budding at the mo. Thanks for reminding me of the importance of this. :)

It's ok desuetude, everyone makes mistakes.

Thanks scody. :) I truly appreciate your positive feedback at the end and agree that am on a team now and need help for both of us. Am actively looking into more ways to help myself and us.
posted by bleuberry at 12:10 PM on December 15, 2008

Hey! Your mind has its paragraphs back! I bet that feels better.

Live long and prosper :-)
posted by flabdablet at 4:12 PM on December 15, 2008

But there is nothing that I can do to go back and repair my reputation in my friend's eyes, not that they said anything to me directly, but I could just imagine what they were thinking. And it still doesn't take back the effect that my mother made me look like a complete whore in public... But God only knows WHAT was going through these people's minds and how they might see me differently now. I couldn't tell them these things.

I'm not going to tell you "shouldn't" be upset about what happened, but I can say that given what you told us, I don't think most people would think less of you for it. You're imagining and projecting the worst, but it's very unlikely to be the truth of what they think of you. (And if they do think less of you for it, then they're not good friends in the first place-- not that it's pleasant to lose not-so-good friends, especially on your wedding day, but if they're people that are going to be so judgmental then honestly, good riddance!)

And I'm not going to say you shouldn't be angry with your mother, because your history and her tone of voice and facial expressions, etc, are a huge part of interpreting it. But I can say that "teasing the couple on their wedding day with embarassing stories" is actually a pretty common and accepted practice. I mean, she still should've known that you're particularly sensitive and private and so you'd find it very painful and uncomfortable, but it's not like the act itself is necessarily a bizarre, cruel, inappropriate thing to do. I'm not saying it wasn't cruel of her to do it in your particular circumstances. Just that to an outside observer, her telling that particular story at your wedding day sounds honestly like a pretty acceptable thing to do-- teasing you with a story that's a little bit embarassing but is ultimately about how highly you thought about SO from the time you first met him.
posted by EmilyClimbs at 8:42 PM on December 15, 2008

I can sympathize. Similar things happened at my wedding a few months back.

I have been in therapy about these issues, and was recommended this book which i found immensely helpful.

good luck!
posted by slagerst at 1:21 PM on December 16, 2008

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