L
Just Said Yes May 2013

Groom's sisters as part of wedding?

luckygal79, on July 23, 2012 at 9:21 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 25
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My FMIL is upset that my fiancee's sisters are not being included in the wedding party, and aren't involved enough by just reading a prayer. I have 6 bridesmaids, he has 5 groomsmen, and she thinks that they should stand on his side. We are trying to make all sides happy. Everything I've read has said that having them do a reading is sufficient, but the FMIL doesn't think it is. We've reiterated that this is OUR wedding, not hers, and we will find a way to include them... I've read that having them take part in a special Unity ceremony is an idea too. Do others have suggestions for how to include them?

25 Comments

Latest activity by Ariel, on August 19, 2019 at 12:51 AM
  • Summer
    VIP October 2012
    Summer ·
    • Flag

    My FH's sisters are not in our wedding either. But his niece really wanted a part in it since her brother is in it so she is going to be our "helper" She will be there to help us with anything we need. Serve us our food and drinks. She loves the idea Smiley smile But she is 18. I'm going to make her a apron to wear too Smiley smile

    How old our your FH's sisters?

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  • Fawn
    Super October 2012
    Fawn ·
    • Flag

    It can be hard to put your foot down, especially with your FMIL but I think the reading is a nice thing. They can also help with the ceremony by handing out programs. Maybe they can wear a short version of your BM dresses or dresses in the same color.

    Other than standing up next to you all and making it look like a big mob, I'm not sure what else they can do.

    I would suggest doing a sweetheart table rather than a head table to minimize the difference between his sisters and your BMs... It may get her off your back a little bit.

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  • The New Mrs. B
    Master May 2013
    The New Mrs. B ·
    • Flag

    Maybe have them be ushers or pass our programs? I've been to a few weddings where women were ushers..

    Or if they are older, having their children in your wedding should be sufficient.. My fiance's sister is 9 years older than him, lives across the country, and they aren't close (I've only met her 4 times).. We included their "family" by asking his sister and her husband's daughter (my FH's niece) to be our flower girl..

    Good luck!

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  • krisalicious
    Master April 2012
    krisalicious ·
    • Flag

    Ditto on the sweetheart table.

    I think it's a nice gesture to include them but really it's up to your FH if he wants them on his side or not. Families do have different cultures around this - in my H's family, siblings and their spouses are expected to be in the WP or it's a major slap in the face. Whereas my family doesn't expect that. But I would think if it's a big deal in the family in general, your FH would be all for it. Since he's not, I would stay out of it and let him deal with it.

    Do you have any idea if his sisters even care? Or is it just his mom?

    One thing to be wary of is that lots of the drama-filled posts about bridesmaids on this site seemed to start with relationships that weren't all that close to begin with. It can make things awkward.

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  • dragonfly726
    Master October 2011
    dragonfly726 ·
    • Flag

    What is your specific reasoning for not wanting them in the bridal party? I only ask because although you might not want them, it would be a really nice gesture and a way to keep the peace as you join into this family. Both of my SILs were bridesmaids in our wedding and I really feel like that helped us to bond. My brother was also a GM.

    However, if you feel very strongly about not having them for whatever reason, that is yours and FS's call to make, not your FMIL. I just wonder what it would really hurt for them to be in the bridal party, why not let them buy the pretty dress and stand up front with you two on your wedding day?

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  • Cydney J (Cydney M)
    Master October 2011
    Cydney J (Cydney M) ·
    • Flag

    I'd tread lightly if I were in your shoes. I asked my SIL to be a BM in our wedding thinking it was the 'right' thing to do...it ended with DH kicking her out of the wedding and her not even coming. My other SIL (DH's half 12 year old sister) did a reading in the wedding....it was very special for us and her.

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  • 2d Bride
    Champion October 2009
    2d Bride ·
    • Flag

    I'd say this one is up to your FH, not you. It's his mother and his sisters, and his mother is asking that they be on his side. I'd leave it up to him to stand up to her, negotiate with her, or give in to her. That way, whatever happens, you aren't starting out with the family seeing you as the trouble-maker.

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  • Jennifer
    VIP September 2012
    Jennifer ·
    • Flag

    I think the more important issue is how do the sisters feel? Do they want to be in the wedding as readers or in the bridal party? I would think that if you sat down and had a conversation with them and work out something that all of you feel comfortable with, then it isn't going to matter what the FMIL wants. The sisters may be happy enough to just go the weddig at all or be invited to the bachelorette party. They might not even want to have to spend the money on expensive BM dresses and all that goes with being in the bridal party. Why don't you talk to them and see where it goes from there, let us know what they say.

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  • Mrs. Clark aka Mrs Awesomepants
    Master November 2011
    Mrs. Clark aka Mrs Awesomepants ·
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  • Now mrs. K
    VIP June 2013
    Now mrs. K ·
    • Flag

    Definitely talk to the sisters. I ran into this issue with cousins of MINE. Their mothers felt that they should be in the wedding party (we are only having three on each side, and I have four cousins). The cousins really didn't care, but since their mothers were in my mom and dad's wedding, they felt that their kids should be in mine (which is funny, they didn't think that when my brother got married last year). I sat down with my cousins, and they were fine with not being in the wedding (one is in two weddings already in the months leading up to it) I suggested to them that maybe we could find other things for them to do. The two oldest are hosting the guest book table before the wedding, and the two youngest are hosting the gift table at the reception.

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  • Jamie Q.
    Master May 2013
    Jamie Q. ·
    • Flag

    Yea, do the sisters want to be in the BP? I think most people say yes out of obligation in this type of situation unless you are very close. But I think it is up to your FH. If he really wants them there than fine but if it is just because of your FMIL, than talk to your future sisters in law and tell them you want to be involved in a different role which you are working on, or do the readings, escort his mom down the aisle, pass out programs, give a toast, or some other event throughout the evening. You did all you could with your FMIL so just let her get over it!

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  • Kathleen
    Master August 2012
    Kathleen ·
    • Flag

    I would not include someone in your bridal party that YOU don't want there. That just spells trouble later on... My FH has 3 sisters. One is reading during the ceremony, one is an assistant with odds and ends, and the other is doing nothing. I didn't ask them to be bridesmaids, but I gave them freedom to do however much, or little, they wanted outside of being in the actual bridal party, and that is what they chose.

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  • Kathleen
    Master August 2012
    Kathleen ·
    • Flag

    Also, as readers, you can have them as involved, or not involved, as you want. I went to a wedding where the readers were really treated like bridesmaids (they attended the bridal party luncheon, they were in all the bridal party pictures, they got ready with the bride, etc). Or you can literally just have them stand up to read.

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  • MrsO
    Master May 2012
    MrsO ·
    • Flag

    I've always been torn on this subject. I don't think it is absolutely necessary to include siblings, however I think it is a nice gesture. That is assuming that the siblings don't have a bad relationship.

    On one hand, my FSIL asked me to be a bridesmaid in her and my brother's wedding. I was happy to accept. While her and I are not super close, we are still friends and get along well. My brother and I have never had a close relationship, however we have never had a "bad" relationship. Despite not being super close, I would have been very hurt if I was not asked.

    On the other hand, my brother was not a groomsman in my wedding. However the reason for that was because we only had a MOH (my best friend from college) and BM (DH's brother). If we had included other people, I would have made sure that my DH asked my brother.

    We know what your FMIL wants. What does your FH and your FSILs want?

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  • Desarae
    VIP October 2022
    Desarae ·
    • Flag

    Hi date twin! I've had the same trouble with my FMIL. FH's sister is not in my BP and I don't think she really wants to be. We are not close at all and only see/talk to each other when we're doing something with the family. However, FMIL feels that she should be included since she's family. FMIL also is very concerned about what people will think because FSIL is not in the wedding. I stood firm in my decision to only have 2 of my closest friends involved who are like my family. I came to the conclusion that this is OUR wedding and we have the right to make our own decisions, especially since we are paying for everything. I know myself and I don't want to look back on my wedding day and remember being unhappy because I was forced to do something. FH is understanding of my decision and we both agreed to just keep moving forward. I suggest having her do a reading or help out as a day of coordinator?

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  • Tanashia & Robert
    Devoted August 2013
    Tanashia & Robert ·
    • Flag

    Oh wow........I have two sisters and we are close, my fh has one sister and we are also close, in fact she is more than a sis-in-law to me. She is playing a big part in my wedding. Both families get along great. She will be standing beside me along with my sisters !!

    • Reply
  • L
    Just Said Yes May 2013
    luckygal79 ·
    • Flag

    Wow, thank you everybody for all the feedback, this is super helpful! I knew I couldn't be the only one ever in this sticky situation. My FH and I plan to talk to his sisters about their involvement. I like the idea of putting them in similar BM dresses and making a point to include them in everything - readings, luncheons, bachelorette, making a toast, etc. They are 24 and 28 (I'm 32), and since I already have six of my best friends as BMs, two more would just be too big of a wedding party for my taste, and I won't do it because it's what the FMIL wants. As far as I know they aren't upset about not being BMs, this whole thing started from my FMIL.

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  • K
    Master October 2012
    Kat ·
    • Flag

    I am another bride who asked FSIL to be a BM and ended up regretting it. She accepted and then 10 months later, told me she was uncomfortable being in the wedding. I agree you should talk to the sisters and see how they feel about everything. Just because FMIL thinks they should be part of the wedding party doesn't mean they feel the same way.

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  • Ednabug
    Master December 2011
    Ednabug ·
    • Flag

    I wanted to include his sisters, so my husbands sisters were involved a little in the wedding. His father passed a year before we got married, so his sisters lit a candle in his memory...one of his sisters read a poem after we did our unity sand ceremony,and another sister was our MC at the reception.

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  • Mrs. Christie H~
    Super August 2012
    Mrs. Christie H~ ·
    • Flag

    For us, it was just understood that all siblings (he is one of 7, with four bothers and two sisters, and I am one of 6, with five bothers. Only one of my brothers will be in the bridal party, as one is deployed, and the other three are really young and we left it up to them if they wanted to be groomsmen our not and they chose not to be) would be included in the bridal party. I couldn't imagine fh's two sisters NOT being in my bridal party.

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