My Daughter Didn’t Invite Me to Her Wedding—What Should I Do?

Dear Newsweek,

I am the mother of four children – three girls and my son is the youngest. Our son has had some domestic trouble with an on/off girlfriend. Once, our youngest daughter tried to kick her girlfriend out of our house when she and her girlfriend would not follow our wishes and would leave our house. My daughter and son were arrested after me and his girlfriend called the police as the argument got physical and out of hand.

After this incident, for that daughter’s engagement last September, I held a special surprise engagement party for her with both sides of the family at a country club in February. Less than two weeks after that party, this daughter overheard our son in the background of our phone conversation (as he was at my house) and went unheeded, saying she was ending our relationship. .

The girl was seen arguing with the girl sitting on the sofa.
iStock/Getty Images Plus

He said that I never protected him and he is angry with me and asked me not to contact him anymore. I tried to tell her that I never thought she would be in the same room with my son or even talk to him.

A few weeks ago, she asked her two sisters to go wedding dress shopping with her and “a few other guys”, noting that she “didn’t expect mom to be there”. I can’t believe she would actually go this far. She stayed with us until she was 26 and we supported her through pharmacy school. I think he doesn’t need us anymore.

Carol, Connecticut

listen and accept each other’s feelings

Wendy Vanill is a clinical psychologist based in London, UK, working with individuals and families with emotional difficulties.

I am sorry to hear about your struggle with your daughter. I find this particularly painful and hurtful in light of the planning and preparation going on for her wedding and the suggestion that you may not be present at the upcoming wedding dress shopping.

Your daughter is in pain, and I wonder if she feels betrayed and surprised to hear her brother’s voice in the background. I hope your daughter feels that the break in her relationship with her brother was the result of her trying to protect you and your husband in the household. Perhaps she feels that you and your son are on the mend and she handles the incident on her own with her brother, which may have contributed to her feeling angry and expressing this to you by listening to her voice Are.

Planning a wedding is a very exciting time in a person’s life and I noticed the tentative language your daughter used in the lesson surrounding your absence. This makes me think that there may be an opening for your relationship to mend and she probably doesn’t think you want to be with her.

It seems to me that sitting down and listening to each other and acknowledging their feelings might justify this argument. If this seems too difficult to do at the moment, can you write her a letter explaining what happened and acknowledge how she must be feeling?

It can also be helpful to have someone neutral to mediate the conversation with the two of you.

Best wishes to you

Explore the root causes of family dynamics

Verelle Anne Worstman, a psychotherapist based in London, UK, with experience in family conflict and many other issues.

It sounds like you find yourself in a hurtful situation for both yourself and your family. You don’t feel appreciated, you’re not supported, and now you’ve been singled out. There seems to be confusion about the role and what is lacking is a healthy way of dealing with conflict in your family. Extroversion and physical fights are immature ways of coping that escalate things. You might find it interesting to read up on the “play triangle”.

There are two sides to the situation: a skills approach and a healing side. In my opinion, both require attention to achieve a more intense resolution.

On the skill side, it is important that parents are on the same page with regards to their children. Otherwise, children receive a lot of power, and this has happened. Your daughter is in charge – she divides, demands and makes decisions.

Another essential aspect for parents is to pursue and facilitate healthy ways of dealing with conflict. These include listening sympathetically to all and collaborating for a solution that is good for all. Strictly no barrage, no yelling, no physical approach, no stonewalling, no arguing. The “nonviolent communication” approach may be helpful here. It requires a lot of practice and in your case I would strongly suggest professional guidance to keep the boundaries clear.

In terms of healing, family members often unconsciously repeat dysfunctional patterns of their ancestors. These can be resolved by applying family constellation therapy, which eliminates the cause of the mobility and makes behavior change more spontaneous. This involves asking many of your questions—why did this pattern emerge in the first place? Why are there weak boundaries and power struggles in the family? Why are compassion, cooperation and connection missing? What separated you from your feminine wisdom and power?

Usually, there is an old trauma where it all began and being unresolved, it has been passed on for generations. You can prevent this by energetically releasing what is not yours, reconnecting to resources, and fixing what is yours. You, as a mother, can do a family constellation by yourself and free your offspring. It is powerful, efficient, deep, compassionate and much faster than talk therapy in cases like this. Hope this will help you.


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If you have a similar family dilemma, let us know via life@newsweek.com. We can ask experts for advice, and your story can be featured on Newsweek.

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