My fiancé’s parents had a messy divorce. He's lived with his mum but they haven't gotten along for over seven years.
Both are at fault. She’s willing to fix things but says it needs more time. He doesn’t make much effort either.
Our wedding’s soon. I’m good with both his parents and want them present.
He refuses to invite his mum saying he “wouldn't want to talk to her, it’ll be awkward.”
I’m pressuring him to at least offer the invitation or he’ll ruin any chance of resolving things with her.
She’ll then not like me or my family.
You can’t force him to invite his mother. But a wedding isn’t the time for settling scores.
Tell him that he’ll be escalating their family “mess” by publicly humiliating her.
It’ll be even worse if he invites his father. He’s also making you and your family look bad.
If he doesn’t budge, it’s a red flag that should be worrying you.
Is he capable of dealing with the ups and downs of marriage? Will he ignore serious issues and refuse to see his own part, rather than work with you?
Encourage a pact between mother and son to get through the wedding amicably.
Then tell him to man up and deal with his mother’s presence.
Reader’s Commentary Regarding the woman keeping a pregnancy that happened when a condom broke during casual sex (Sept. 25):
Reader – “I’m a man/husband/father who’s been churned up and spit out by the family law system, and estranged from my grown daughter as a result.
“I fear a great prejudice towards men exists in family law, and I’m living proof that lying and cheating by a vindictive wife/mother can ruin a man financially and emotionally.
“My ex left me for my best friend. I paid for all the divorce and subsequent legal bills fighting for custody (I lost), fair access, and support.
“After reaching a legal settlement, she moved far away effectively cutting off access, but my payments still had to flow their way!
“I was promised visits that never happened – with me buying plane tickets and waiting at the airport to have no one call to say that my daughter wasn't coming.
“I last saw her at 17, she’s 34 now.
“Your advice to the writer to inform the would-be father is spot on, but also could be the beginning of the end for this guy, drawn into a situation not of his choosing.
“Why isn't the woman taking responsibility for her own actions and taking birth control herself to protect from unwanted pregnancy?
“I understand the condom use for STD protection for both, but to get pregnant accidentally today is inexcusable!
“She’s making all the choices and he gets dragged along to pay for the ride.”
Ellie – I’ve published your comments because they represent numbers of others I’ve received from men who feel they’ve been unjustly treated by the family court system.
Their experiences are similarly harsh, yet their stories are always specific to whatever happened in the relationship between the couple involved.
Who had an affair, and other aspects of blame, are not the family courts’ driving interest.
They have the mandate to protect children’s best interests, not either parent’s wallet, nor the resolution of anyone’s anger.
However, there’s a solid warning here: Condoms can break, women and men should be just as responsible for birth control.
Know that both parties in any sexual encounter may face unexpected consequences.
FEEDBACK Regarding the woman who’s torn between marrying a man she loves who lives in another city, or moving into a new-build townhouse she was excited to move into as a single woman (26):
Reader – “You should definitely give the relationship a chance. It's hard to come by love.
“In terms of your property, you can always rent it out and have the tenants sign a lease for whichever timeframe suits your needs.
“If, in case it doesn't work out, you can always come back and still have your house.”
Ellie – Here’s a couple drawn to each other since they were kids living nearby.
They’re now connected romantically at age 31, through daily long-distance contact. He can’t move from where his young daughter lives, because he has shared custody.
She’s unwisely letting her past break-up with an ex keep her fearful, while blocking her increasing emotions and clear chance for a love match.
Tip of the day:
Consider the message and fallout from your partner not inviting a parent to the wedding.