We have a ton of constructive advice about conflict resolution and dealing with guestlist issues… but we get that sometimes you just need to vent! In that spirit, here's an unsent open letter from one frustrated bride.
Dear [friend/relative/loved one] that I am not inviting to my wedding,
We'll skip the awkward well-wishing and wellness inquiries. I know you are angry. You're probably hurting, maybe livid. You might be ready to cut me out of your life completely because you did not receive that magic little piece of paper in the mail that says “Yes! We are fine! Come to my wedding! All is water under the bridge!” You were not invited to my wedding, and therefore I am no longer part of your life.
But here is the grown-up, bare-bones, truth: Not getting invited to my wedding does not mean being uninvited to my life.
There is a reason you are not going to be there on the day of the wedding. Maybe we had a fight that didn't get resolved. Maybe I found out about the views you were spewing behind my back. Maybe we were once close, but then drifted apart. Maybe we were NEVER that close, but just always found a way to hang out.
Regardless, we had some sort of relationship that led you to believe you were a shoe-in. But that relationship is damaged.
So why didn't you get invited?
Wouldn't that be the ultimate “let's kiss and make up” gesture? If I truly cared about our relationship, I'd invite you, regardless of the hurt.
The reason is this: My wedding is not the time and place to resolve issues with you. My wedding is the day that I want to celebrate and remember as the 24 hours where my smile never left my face.
I am going to be marrying the love of my life and in the end, I don't want to care about anything else. My head will be so filled with happiness, worry about the caterer, anxiety over tripping on my dress, Uncle Barney getting drunk, the photographer taking a picture of me picking my nose, etc, that I won't have room in my head, in my SOUL, to try and make amends with you.
Maybe we can repair our relationship, but I'm not using my wedding dress as the bandage.
I'm sorry that our unresolved issues came to a head at one of the most important times of my life. I'm sorry that we weren't able to come to a resolution in between the cake-tastings and the dress-fittings. I'm sorry that you will not get to celebrate with me as I marry the person that means the most to me in this world.
Most of all, I'm sorry that this will hurt you. Because it isn't meant to. Right now we are not at a place where I feel comfortable celebrating with you.
I don't pretend to hope that you will attempt to reconcile with me after all is said and done, but please at least let the possibility enter your heart.