Weddings are wonderful occasions. They bring two families together and are often a celebration of joy and love. But leave it to the mother-of-the-bride to completely ruin her daughter’s special day. Because the bride had chosen a maid-of-honor who had a disability, the bride’s mother decided to write a bullying note to the young woman who has since infuriated the bride and everyone who read it.
Because the bride was outraged at the letter, she no longer speaks to her mother. So what happened exactly? The mother-of-the-bride ordered her daughter, the bride, to “fire” the maid of honor because of her disability. And the way she went out about telling her daughter what to do has offended thousands of people.
The offending mother wrote a letter to Slate’s advice column Dear Prudence. She wrote about why she does not want Katie, her daughter’s best friend, accompanying the bride down the aisle. Although Katie “is like a daughter to me,” the mother of the bride knows what she wants, and that does not include Katie.
“My 27-year-old daughter and her best friend, Katie, have been best friends since they were four. Katie practically grew up in our house and is like a daughter to me. My daughter recently got engaged to her fiancé and announced that Katie would be the maid of honor (Katie’s boyfriend is also a good friend of my future son-in-law),” the mother of the bride began to the letter.
Because she wants her daughter’s wedding to be perfect, it cannot include Katie in such a vital role. If Katie is part of the wedding party, it will be “unsightly” and not good enough for the bride’s mother. The reason she wants to “fire” Katie from her role as maid of honor is that “she walks with a pretty severe limp due to a birth defect (not an underlying medical issue).”
The mother then writes, “She has no problem wearing high heels and has already been fitted for the dress, but I still think it will look unsightly if she’s in the wedding procession limping ahead of my daughter.”
While that is offensive enough, the mother of the bride didn’t stop there.
“I mentioned this to my daughter and suggested that maybe Katie could take video or hand out programs (while sitting), so she doesn’t ruin the aesthetic aspect of the wedding. My daughter is no longer speaking to me (we were never that close), but this is her big wedding, and I want it to be perfect.”
The mother of the bride does not realize how horrible she sounds. She is completely ignorant of her prejudice against Katie and disabled people.
“All of the other bridesmaids will look gorgeous walking down the aisle with my daughter. Is it wrong to have her friend sit out?”
The writer behind Dear Prudence, Mallory Ortenberg, could not believe it.
“I’m having a hard time wrapping my mind around this letter. I encourage you to reread it and to ask yourself that time-honored question: ‘Do I sound like a villain in a Reese Witherspoon movie?’”
She certainly does.
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