My girlfriend and her mom planned a wedding behind my back. What do I do?

March 30th, 2010

I was in the military and thought about staying in. Because we would need to be married for her to go with me, we talked about getting married. She asked me if it was ok if she could book a photograpgher just in case I stayed in the Air Force, and I said sure. I decided not to stay in and just finish my enlistment. So I thought that since I was not staying in we did not need to get married. I want everyone to know that I love her very much and that we have only been together for 18 months but, total time spent together is only 6 months. Anyway, I come back from Louisiana to find out that her and her mom have booked a reception hall, church, wedding date, put a guest list together, and told me where we are going on the honeymoon. The problem, is that I have never even proposed to her. She has no ring and I have been yelled at by her and her family about why she does not have a ring. I NEVER PROPOSED TO HER! I’m not ready to get married. What do I say so her family won’t hate me? Thanks.
For all the haters in here. She brought up the entire conversation for the wedding, NOT me. You don’t have to have a wedding date to reserve a photographer if the photographer is a family friend. She told me that she would not lose any money on the photographer. I said yes because I did not want to be mean. Once again it apears that my good nature has got my butt is a sling again. The only thing that I may have done wrong is to not say anything sooner. I let her mom get out of control. Oh, I forgot to mention that she was previously engaged two years ago and the wedding was called off. I never asked her why or for any details about it. To the person that said I left alot out of my story, they were correct. I left out stuff that would make her look even worse. I did not want to attack her to make me look right. She is 23 and I am 25 yrs old.

38 Responses to “My girlfriend and her mom planned a wedding behind my back. What do I do?”

  1. Melissa_1235 says:

    well it kinda sounds like you already told her you were getting married by telling her she could book a photographer. so looks like you mest up on that one. it seems you led heron hthinking you were getting married. sorry, but this is your fault.

  2. Deke says:


    Just run.

  3. Sally says:

    Don’t be such a wa nker. Stand up and be a man. Tell the family what you just wrote down here. Tell them that you want to make sure that everything with your relaltionship is going wonderfully before you jump into marriage. Of course if you have been living together, they may find this hard to understand. The fact is, you’re not married now, and it’s your free will to make decisions for what’s best for you.

  4. virginity buster says:

    Screw her, I would tell her the truth and let the chips fall where they may. If you think she and mom are pushy now, let her get married to you. I forsee hell for you if you do not run far and fast.

  5. Neal J says:

    RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN RUN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Pink Denial says:

    HA! Oh my, are you serious???

    Well, you need to set things straight right away. Who cares if her family gets upset and hates you? Talk to this girl and gently break the news to her that you never proposed to her, and you don’t want to marry her. You could suggest postponing the wedding if you really want to.

    She’ll cry, she’ll insist that you DID propose, and she’ll leave you. Probably. Let her deal with her family.

  7. Karin C says:

    You need to tell them exactly what you have told us here. Never mind if her family hates you! You are telling the truth and putting your true feelings out there. If they hate you for the way you really feel, what does that tell you? That they don’t value you and your feelings, that they will punish you for having those feelings, and that they would much rather you contort and distort yourself into something and someone you’re not.

    You really need to lay it on the line for these people: if they feel that you misled them, you can be sorry about that, but they have to be willing to admit that they erred also.

    Just tell them what you’ve told us and stand firm on it. Don’t let them use emotional blackmail or guilt to force you into a marriage you are not ready for yet, if you ever will be.

    Good luck and stand firm.

  8. legally blonde says:

    You need to speak up NOW! Tell her, and her alone, exactly how you feel: that you love her very much but you’re simply not ready to get married. If she feels that you mis-led her, apologize and remind her that you were thinking practically of how you could include her in your anticipated re-enlistment, etc.

    Your concern should be her…and you…NOT her family. But don’t delay any further. The longer you take mustering up your courage, the harder it’s going to be for the two of you to cancel the wedding, without destroying the relationship.

    Grow a set, and tell her.

  9. ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ says:

    There was definately miscommunication happening-if you told her to book a photographer and never told her to cancel or never told her that you were finishing your enlistment and no longer wanted to marry her right away than how would she know what you wanted? She was carrying out your original plan- get married so she could go with you if you stayed in the Air Force…

  10. lickit_suckit_slammit says:

    My friend this is hard , I can see you love this girl but if her family is intent onn this wedding I can say this : RUN LIKE HELL . If her family is exerting this much control over your life now then just imagine , it will be 10 times worse after a marriage . Make it clear that you never proposed and you will not have other people running your life , but no matter what , RUN away as fast as you can . oh be ready for her to say ” I ‘ m pregnant ” the first time you try to set things right, shes not pregnant , just a old trick used by some woman to controll a situation .

  11. Tonya says:

    Wow, you should explain that you aren’t ready for marriage now and you need more time dating. If they don’t understand that then you should move on. You don’t want her family running your life, do you?

  12. says:

    I would just tell this girl ” ADIOS” & say to my feet, ” DO YOUR DUTY !!”,and I would not care what her family thought, it’s your life, not your girl friend’s & certainly not her family’s. Find someone else who somewhere down the road will allow you the courtesy of asking if she would have you as her husband, besides, they out-lawed shot-gun weddings long ago. I would be away from her & her family so fast they’d think they never knew me !!

  13. erinrydgren says:

    It sounds pretty sketchy that her and her mom would do this…not to mention desperate. It’s not your fault. A conversation does not imply anything. It doesn’t sound like you misled her, it sounds like she got all excited at the prospect of being married and got caught up in the rush with her mom. I think that you should have a serious chat with her and tell her that you love her, but that you don’t think you are ready for marriage. Apologize for any inconvienance and if she throws a hissy fit, then you probably don’t want to be with someone so demanding and uncontrollable, not to mention immature, as that.

  14. Laura says:

    this was unfair of the family to do to you you have been put in an awkward situation so what you need to do is set her down, take her out to dinner or something so your alone together alone. explain that you love her very much and how this whole thing was a big surprise to you, tell her that you didn’t expect nor plan on getting married her so soon Tell her you rather get married when you are more ready. You also might want to say sorry her family has gone through so much trouble that you still want to be together and someday marry her just not right now. She most likely get upset this is unavoidable, so be honest be sensitive and gentle, good luck.

  15. stargirl says:

    Why would you agree to the photographer?? If you didn’t want to get married then why would you even consider it? I’d bet good money you are leaving out a huge chunk of this story b/c either you aren’t taking enough responsibility or this girl is nuts! Seems pretty simple to me if you don’t want to get married then be a MAN and tell her. It doesn’t matter how you do it or what you say everyone is going to be mad at you. Suck it up!

  16. M S says:

    You may not have proposed marriage, but you definitely implied marriage. Unfortunately, I don’t think there is any good fix to this, but you need to think about what it all means for your life, and not how she and her family will feel about you. I think it can only end badly if you go ahead and marry her to keep peace.

    I see 2 options: 1). if you are pretty sure you will want to marry her in the future, buy a ring and propose (for real) on the condition of a long engagement – then have the wedding when you are ready or 2). tell her what you said here, that you thought about marriage before so you two could be together, but that you aren’t ready yet. With option 2, be prepared for her to be really mad because she will see it as you were only willing to marry her before as a convenience.

    Good luck

  17. G says:

    Hey, I can understand how this may have happened, it is just a miscommunication between everyone, unfortunately, I think it is too late to do anything about it without destroying what you have, deep down if you feel love for this woman, and you can see your children in her eyes than get married and enjoy each other. All you need is each other, me and my wife have gotten through everything because of each other. So if you feel deep down love for her, than she is the one and this is the right thing to do.

    What you need to do if you want to get married, take her to a special place and propose to her, just you and her, then go get married, but make the proposal a special moment.

  18. weddrev says:

    Well, it does matter if her family hates you. Especially if you do decide to marry this girl.

    Why would you tell this girl she could book a photographer??? You do realize that she heard the words, “Yes, we’re going to get married”.
    What you need to do is find a nice, quite place, sit down with your girlfriend & tell her that you THOUGHT you were ready to get married, but you are not. Tell her since you are no longer staying in the AF, you’re really undecided about your life. Tell her you need time to get to know her again.
    Tell her she needs to contact the vendors & have them put all this on hold. It will give you time to think about whether this girl is ‘the one’ or not.

    There’s going to be tears & hurt & anger, but it’s better now than later. Do it today. The longer you wait, the worse it’s gonna be.

    Or you can propose.

  19. Consultant says:

    Take your time, marriage is for a LIFETIME. If you aren’t ready, let her know! Communication is very important, so practice talking to her over this. Be honest about wanting to propose properly. She should give you the time you need to be sure.

  20. Tally says:

    I think if you don’t go through with it, she and her family are not going to be happy with you. By you telling her she could book a photographer, it was as if you proposed in her head, at least, you gave the marriage idea a go ahead. If you seriously don’t want to get married you have to tell her, because with all these things booked, I’m sure money has been put down to reserve these things and who ever paid the money might lose it, because you don’t want to get married. Isn’t there a way to compromise? Tell her you’ll engage her, but you don’t want the wedding to be until June 2008 or a later date. Could that work? Then the date will be pushed back, you’ll just have to get her a ring, the family will still be ok with you, and you just bought yourself some more time.

  21. cynomyn g says:

    Wow I feel sorry for you.You need to tell them that it just don’t feel right if you don’t propose.Besides What Kind of person would want to get married without getting to make ANY decisions?Thats not very fair.What if you wanted to pick out something?If it too soon tell them.Just be honest.I don’t thing it was very fair.Who would want to get married after that anyway.If she truly loves you then she will understand.Good luck to you both.

  22. Fairy Dust :*:*: says:

    Poor girl, you have really led her up the garden path!!! You’ve made your bed now lie in it!!! That is SOOOOOO rude, to now say you do not want to get married. You say that you love her but, obviously you don’t if you could do that to her!!!! BOOO ! !

  23. lillian_ivy says:

    Drop her. She should never have planned a wedding behind your back. She should at least have the courage to tell he family that you haven’t proposed so they will leave you alone about a ring. Then you have to think about what she told her family? They had to get this idea from somewhere. Re-evaluate your relationship. .

  24. Susan B says:

    Wow.. this is a pickle. I know it will be difficult, but you need to sit down and talk with your girlfriend. Tell her you didn’t mean to mislead her and that you do love her and that you’re hoping that a marriage will come in the future, but that right now you want to spend time getting to know her better now that you are in close proximity. Assure her that you care deeply for her but that you aren’t ready for a wedding.

    It could cause the end of the relationship and it’s certain to embarrass her. Be sensitive and caring. It is possible the mother will want you to pay all the non refundable fees… so be prepared for that, even though legally you wouldn’t be responsible for them because you didn’t put the deposits down.

    Oh, wait, I have another idea. How about you propose to her now, and ask for a LONG engagement. That way you’re not telling her to call it off, you’re just asking her to postpone it… Just another idea that came to me. This could also help with the non-refundable fees. They could be just put off. Then if it doesn’t work out in 3-6 months, you can back out without looking like a complete heel.

    It’s a pickle.. I wish you the best.

  25. findyourbliss says:

    You need to talk with her now. Chances are she is not going to be happy, she might even kick you to the curb as they say. But if you marry her against your own wishes you will regret it, it will be the problem that causes all other problems in you marriage.

  26. Brittany B says:

    Granted I can’t decide this for you, I’m not so sure you two should be getting married. I mean, how could you two not have communicated in the least bit about this over the past months? I feel like there must be more to the story here.

    But let’s take a step back and look at this situation as objectively as possible. First of all, don’t think about the events that have transpired as a conspiracy, but rather as one big decision–made alone–that got out of hand. To book a photographer, of course she’d have to have a set date–I’m assuming you two would have at least discussed a range of dates, right? It follows that in order to book a date for the photographer, she’d have to make sure the church and reception site were available. I am in the process of currently planning a wedding, and I can tell you that booking one aspect of a wedding does not happen in a vacuum. Every decision depends on something else….which is why you’re seeing the domino effect right now. Now I’m not defending the fact that all these decisions where made in your absence. Just trying to point out a bit of the rationale as I can imagine none of this was done to intentionally go behind your back. No girl in her right mind would go to the lengths of spending all the money it takes to reserve receptions sites and photographers AND involve the family if she was just trying to deceive you into marrying her–I’m sure she loves you very much and honestly thought her desire for marriage was being reciprocated.

    As for what to do, you two need to sit down and talk–long and hard–about your communication skills and how they will affect your marriage. That needs to happen first and foremost before a decision is made to cancel the wedding (you should also take into account the imminence of the date that was chosen and whether or not all those guests on the list have been invited yet). Talk to her about the gaps in your communication thus far–make sure she understands your frustration, but try to acknowledge your own shortcomings in this department, too.

    The next step would be to decide on a joint plan of action to address the family situation. I can definitely see that her family might be a bit frustrated at a lack of wedding ring if they’ve already shelled out the money to reserve all these spaces. But they need to understand that a marriage–at it’s core–is about a lifelong commitment between two people (who happen to be their children). I’m sure they can see that this is a huge decision to make if one or both parties weren’t committed 100% from the start. In the end, I’m sure the lifelong happiness of their daughter will enable them to move past the events of the past few months (so don’t let them pressure you into a marriage you’re not ready for).

    Just remember: photographers and caterers can be easily canceled–marriages cannot (or should not).

  27. choose happiness says:

    First… it would be my guess that the mother jumped in when she shouldn’t have. Her family needs TO BUTT OUT!!!!
    Second… This is what your life would be like after you get married. You would come in last place next to her family.
    Third… her family NEEDS TO BUTT OUT!!!!
    Fourth… You didn’t mention your ages. She sounds very young. If she can’t act like an adult in this matter then she is too young to be married.
    Fifth… You are 100% right when u admit that 6 months is not a long time.
    Sixth… If you are certain that you want to be part of this family, arrange to be alone with her… NO FAMILY.
    Let her know your concerns. Tell her that you want a longer engagement to get to know her better; that is what engagements are for. Let her know that you love her and you want to postpone the wedding. Let her know that you will not be herded into a marriage by her family as this will always leave you feeling bitter and resentful. You worry about what it would do to your relationship together.
    Let her know that you love her, that you want to officially ask her to marry you, be engaged for ONE YEAR, pick a date together.
    Seven… Army life would have been benificial as it would probably have taken u away from her family. Distance yourself from them.
    Eight… Give her time to think about it. If she won’t agree to this, I would question her love for you, her maturity and the grip that her family has on her.
    Nine… You deserve a good life.

  28. meuamor0506 says:

    Well you should not have told her you would marry her so she can go with you. You are not ready to get married you should not have even suggested it, you don’t play with a girls emotions, if you told her that you were going to marry her, she is not going to think about it like oh well we don’t need to get married now b/c he is staying. That does not work with women! It is time to be honest and tell her you are not ready to get married and then you need to help her cancel everything

  29. Jill says:

    Tell em “Hey, put the brakes on already, I’m not ready for this.”

    Show them this well written letter from you that explains it all clearly. You need to be in charge of your own life while you can. These plans need to be canceled for now.
    They have jumped the gun here, and put you under pressure your not ready for. I don’t like the way this all took place with out more communication between the two of you. This may be a good sign for you, so keep your eyes open for more signs of what your future together might be like.It is important to grow old and still love & respect your mate. We do for 54 yrs.~~~Jill

  30. kbc says:

    It looks like you made a big mistake, but don’t get married because they wasted THEIR money on wedding stuff, cause at the end it will end up in a Divorce, which cost more money… Just be honest, tell her she misunderstood, and let things happen. If she leave you, she didn’t really love you. And next time think of what you tell your girlfriend… BUT please DONT get married if your not ready…Good luck

  31. Specsy says:

    Yes I think the other answerers are right – if her family yell at you because she hasn’t got an engagement ring, then (i) who do they think they are, telling you what to do? and (ii) simply tell them that she has no ring because she is not engaged – you haven’t asked her to marry you. If you don’t feel “on board” with this wedding, then they will have to cancel it. Speak privately to your girlfriend and explain that you love her very much but that you want your relationship to be something that develops at its own pace, with the two of you in step together, not you feeling that you’re being forced. I think your relationship, and ultimately your marriage, is far more likely to break down if it’s “forced”, whereas if you are left to get there in your own time, it will be able to unfold naturally and the two of you will stand a much greater chance of still being happy together in 20 years’ time. This is a time for being honest but gentle.

  32. Tara says:

    If you do actually marry her, definitely go see a premarital counselor together beforehand–It seems like you guys might have some communications issues to work out.
    (I’m kind of laughing, but I feel bad for you. Sticky situation there. Good Luck)

  33. Blunt says:

    I’m very sorry for what have hapenned to you. First of all, and now that you learned, never talk about “weddings” to a girl even if it’s just make believe. NEVER, Us girls take that very seriously. Yes, she overreacted, but you somewhat agreed to marry her verbally IF you were going to stay in the Air Force.

    With that said, the best that you can do is to tell her. Yes, it will be drama, emotional blackmail etc. but you have to. You cannot be “forced” into marriage just because you want to be polite. be careful of her getting pregnant or “making belive” that she is pregnant just so you go on with the wedding. Ive seen this happen many times, when women do desperate things to get their way.

    You have to tell her:

    Dear X:

    As you know, I am not staying in the Air Force and therefore there is no rush to get married. I care about you very much but this has snowballed out of control. I don’t feel confortable about all of those wedding arrangements being made behind my back without my consent or input. I ask you to please understand that we are both still young and that it’s not in my inmediate plans to get married, when I’m ready you’ll be the fisrt to know, but for now I don’t want to get married, not this way anyway. If you want to continue our relationship as bf/gf only that’s great, but marriage is out of the question right now. I’m sorry if I misled you or if you misunderstood, but this is not what I want right now and you should understand.

    If she doesn’t understand, then she is a looney and you should run as fast as I can. If she agrees to stay as is, then you’ll se later on if she marriage worthy, but she sounds as a nut case to me. Do not get her pregnat… I’ll guarantee you that she will try!

    Good luck

  34. Brandy says:

    I haven’t read other people’s responses yet, I wanted to add my input based strictly on what you wrote, including the additional details. The thing is, there isn’t enough space on answers for you to tell the whole story, so I’m sure there is a lot left out. We also don’t know her side of the story, only what you tell us here. So based on only what you wrote here, I think you’ve been ambushed – partly your fault and partly over zealousness of her (and probably more her mom). This happens a lot to guys in the military (remember Officer and a Gentleman? You may be too young but might consider renting the movie) they see a man in the military and see a perfect dollar sign and a bright future (well with your chances of going to Iraq, that future is more dim now than before). You should have never agreed to make any moves toward a wedding – photography, nada. Going into the military is NOT a reason to get married! So many of those marriages fail because the coulple think this way – if we marry I can go with him. Now, I’m quite sure that even though they probably just got way ahead of themselves, there was SOME communication between you and your psuedo-fiance about wedding plans? I’m constantly calling my fiance about this idea or that appointment – albeit he’s not away. But still, some kind of mentioning of “real” wedding plans have to have been made. Perhaps you felt you were stuck and had no choices since you were away and now that you are back home – and have freedom – you don’t want to be tied down? Who knows. The bottom line is if you don’t want to get married, then don’t get married. Yes, you are wrong for leading her on (or letting her lead herself on) so you aren’t totally innocent. But prolonging the “I don’t want to get married” conversation will NOT help. They are going to be mad regardless but if she loves you she’ll wait until you are ready too. If not, you break up and life goes on. I wish you both luck becaue you are in a tight spot. Just get it over with as soon as possible, the longer you wait, the worse it will be.

  35. superfly86 says:

    Kill ’em, no seriously just maim them

  36. Happily Engaged says:

    It looks like you guys’ wires got crossed somewhere. I think she jumped the gun way too soon. I don’t think it’s your fault at all. Even if you had of proposed, she still should have included you in the wedding plans (date, location, honeymoon, etc.) I don’t think she should have planned a wedding without a ring. That’s kind of crazy.

    I think the best solution for this problem is to say something before things get further out of hand. Tell her just because you discussed it did not mean you were proposing. Reassure her that you love her but that you’re just not ready to get married just yet. And the family is naturally going to be mad at you because they’re going to believe whatever she says because that’s her family but if I were you I wouldn’t too much worry about what the family is going to say or think about you. Just hope she understands and will continue a relationship with you but if she doesn’t she wasn’t the one for you to begin with.

    Oh and I were you I’d look a little deeper into why the first wedding was called off. It may be something you need t know.

    Good Luck

  37. Jule says:

    Oh my goodness! You need to speak up… this is your life too. Although she may be upset for the moment, you have to tell her. Explain to her exactly what you said here, how much you love her, etc. and tell her that you don’t want to rush… What’s the hurry? You’re both young. Can you see yourself marrying her? Why not talk about maybe getting her that engagement ring, but having a long engagement so that the two of you can spend more time together before making such a big commitment. Best of luck to you!!!

  38. srasaenz3406 says:

    Well, you certainly can’t get married because of a miscommunication, so you’ve got to clean this up. Tell the truth, pretty much the same way you did right here. Then see what happens. If it’s WWIII and everyone hates you then, hard though it would be, you’ll have dodged a bullet. If your girl understands (even if she feels a little embarrassed) and stays with you, then you’ll know you’ve got the right girl . . . for when the time is right.

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