Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Family Dynamics

I grew up an only child. My mom was 1 of 4 and had three younger brothers. Two of her brothers, my uncles were close to my age when I was a kid. One of them being 8 years older than me and the other being 10 years older. So when I was a kid they would come over and babysit me. They'd like me watch 90210 when I was about 6 years old because they were teenagers and that's what they wanted to watch. So as I got older and they got married, naturally I went to their weddings, birth of their baby, etc.

As they got older, they moved away, moved back and then moved away again. They lived in Chicago, then Washington D.C. now New York City. One of my uncles still lives in my hometown of Huntington. Then of course, I moved across the country to California. Over the years, we've spent less time together but we still see each other for the holidays, group text now and keep up with each other over facebook etc. So when Beezy and I announced that we were getting married I let my family know first thing. I know that it's a long way to come for a wedding so I wanted to give them the most amount of time possible to plan. It's no easy trek coming from West Virginia to California. To get here by plane you have to make at least two connections, it's an all day flying and it's usually a little pricey.

I get it.

I have never asked my family for anything (well besides my mom of course). When one of my uncle got married, I was there... both times. When his baby was born, where was I? At the hospital. Thanksgiving and Christmas? Well I've never missed a Thanksgiving and this past year was the first Christmas I had ever missed. When my other uncle got married. I was there. I even drove 7 hours to get there. I literally had to turn around and drive back the next day. I travelled to see them when they lived in Chicago and Washington D.C. I send them Christmas cards, wish them Happy Birthday etc. So for me to ask them to come to my wedding was the first thing I've ever done. I don't even think I asked for them to come to my high school or college graduation. My cousin was in the hospital for over and week and I texted him everyday asking him how he was because I couldn't be there.

In February I had someone in my family telling me they can't make it to my wedding. Really? Let me hear the excuses. You can't afford it? Well if you get the flight now it's only about 500.00 a person. I paid 1000.00 for my Thanksgiving flight alone. I've given you 13 months to save. Put it on a credit card and pay it off. Then they had the nerve to tell me it's 500.00 plus luggage fees. Um you don't have to check a bag! You can carry on a suitcase. I know you aren't staying out here a month. A weekend worth of clothing will fit in a carry on.

I fully expect to hear more excuses as we get closer and closer. It just really disappoints me. I mean aren't families suppose to rally together for special occasions? I'm 30 years old and this is the first time I'm getting married. I mean come on. We are even going to feed them a 3 course meal, give them free drinks and a favor at the end of the night! We are even working on transportation to and from the hotel to the venue! I'm just really hoping that it all works out. I mean who doesn't want their family to come to their wedding. I really do! All of Beezy's family will be there that's for sure.

And before anyway says, well you chose to move away. Um... so has everyone else!

The wedding is coming, now will the family come too?


Anonymous said...

I Love your blog. I read it regularly but I have to say this post got to me. It's fantastic that you make such a huge effort to attend family events but not everyone is in the same position financially. The 500 could be the difference between making this months mortgage payment.....or eating for the month. You don't know what goes on behind closed doors. I'm sure if people could they would. If they are using finances as an excuse it's probably true.

Unknown said...

I really enjoy your blog and read regularly but I have to say this post really got to me. I think it's great that you have made such an effort to atrend family events and while I understand the desire to have your efforts reciprocated you never know what's going on behind closed doors. That 500 that you seem to think should be oh so easy to come accross may the difference between somone making a mortgage payment this month.....or even eating. I would hate to be in your uncles shoes and come accross this post that so publicly blasts them for admiting they can't justify such a big expense at the moment.

Anonymous said...

I can definitely relate! I got still feel hurt about the family who either a) didn't bother to come to my wedding, or b) said they would come and canceled just days before the wedding! And I was in the same boat as you - I was always supportive of them and traveled for all of their events! So sorry that you are experiencing that, too. :(

It is truly their loss because I know you will have an amazing, fun wedding! :)

Blessing to you!
Christine :)

Why Girls Are Weird said...

My family made me SO mad during my first wedding. Like you, I spent time and money seeing them. I begged for time off from work for holidays so we could go to Illinois (mind you we only lived 6 hours away but still, it's time and money). I went to wedding and holidays, funerals. So when I got married the first time I invited them all and assumed I would see them.

My dad's side is a big, extended family. Most of the family I'm talking about are his cousins and their families. Now, my aunts from that side came. And maybe two of his cousins. But that was it. A few even RSVP'd yes and then didn't show, which made me LIVID because I was paying for their meals.

I still haven't forgiven them. After all the times I've gone out there for them and they couldn't give up one weekend for a 6 hour drive. Ugh.

So I get where you're coming from. It's hard. Weddings bring out the worst in people, which is kind of sad.

Just remember that the people who truly love you will be there.

Anonymous said...

That sucks. Some people are just selfish twats who expect everyone to come to them yet they go to no one.

I can suggest never going to see them again but I don't think you're that kind of person.

Smiling is Good for Your Teeth said...

That is really frustrating. I think that weddings are something you shouldn't miss. I get that maybe they can't make it to the shower or bachelorette (sounds like they are boys...but maybe their significant others?) but the wedding, c'mon! You make that work, especially for family! I hope they come to their senses!

Deidre said...

This really resonates with me...big time. Although not about my wedding luckily my brothers didn't act like douchebags and say they couldn't make it...

However, I fly home every year to visit my family – from Australia so it's the ONLY time I'll see them in any given 12 month period - I usually buy my flights about a year in advance and I check with everyone to see if they have plans for the time i'm coming or if another time works better.

Some years, one of my brothers decides he won't come to our family holiday house while I'm there – he'll come a week or two after I've left the country or at another time. It's...unacceptable.

So I hear ya...is basically what I'm saying.