Did you hear about the Minnesota mom who received an invoice for being a no-show at a wedding? Jessica Baker was invited to a “no kids allowed” wedding. When the best-laid babysitting plans fell through at the last minute, Jessica and her husband didn’t go. Two weeks later, she got a bill from the bride for $79.20, the cost of the herb-crusted walleye she would have enjoyed… you know, had she not been a dirty no-show.
Yes, I know. This tops the charts of rude behavior, doesn’t it? But that’s not all. The verbiage at the bottom of the bill suggests that the stray wedding guests owed the happy couple an explanation for the no-show. Insane, right? But yes, that happened.
Jessica had planned for her mom to babysit while she and her husband attended the nuptials and feasted on herb-crusted walleye… but while she was getting ready, her mom called and told her something came up and that she couldn’t watch the kids. And if your first response to that is “well, what came up?” then stop. It’s none of your business.
Moms can’t win as wedding guests this year. Aside from the tots in the wedding party who are bribed for good behavior at the altar, brides don’t want children at their weddings. I get that. If you don’t want that magic moment where you become Mr. and Mrs. interrupted by a little voice announcing “I just farted!” or have your four-foot custom centerpieces mauled by grubby little fingers, I get it. I really do. I have two 5-year-olds, and the thought of taking them to a formal wedding makes me twitchy.
If one of my friends invites me to a wedding and specifies “no kids,” I’m good with it. I’m excited by the prospect of getting dressed up, drinking free booze and enjoying some overpriced food on your dime. A night out with my husband where we (hopefully) don’t talk about T-ball or the PTA? Sign. Me. Up.
But that whole no-kids thing? That comes at a price for most of us. My babysitter charges 11 bucks an hour to keep my children from destroying our house while we’re out… and trust me, she earns every penny. Again, not complaining. But let me tell you, I’ve rocked a salon blowout and a cocktail dress while eating frozen pizza on my couch a time or two because the sitter canceled. It’s part of the mom territory.
In general, do what you say you’ll do. If you RSVP to a wedding, you go. Simple. In this day and age, we all understand that someone has to pay the catering bill and that turning in a headcount is obligating someone to pay for a $30.00 chicken dinner or whatever.
But give people a break, brides. Give them the benefit of the doubt. If you invited someone to be part of a day that means something to you, hopefully they mean something to you. Tell them you missed them after the fact, or find a way to express your disappointment that they weren’t there. But you’re not entitled to an explanation of what came up. With moms, it could be anything, and you might be sorry you asked: Explosive diarrhea. Lice. The baby flushed your keys down the toilet.
As a mom wedding guest, am I supposed to call the bride an hour before her wedding and give her the rundown on how my kid stuffed a raisin in his nostril and it takes two people to hold him down while I fish it out with my good tweezers? I’m thinking no.
That invoice and the accompanying memo were the rudest thing I’ve seen all year. The bridezilla who sent that is an insensitive ass, and I hope the internet backlash causes her to get over herself and apologize.
Maybe one day this bride will have a baby of her own. Maybe her little darling will surprise her with projectile spit-up… aimed at her perfectly styled hair… as she’s on her way out to attend someone else’s wedding. The karmic scales, people… you just never know which way they’ll tip.