How to disinvite rude family members

I exchanged few emails with my sister. She’s been a royal pain in everything including hotels, attire, food, tables, transportation, time, photos and so forth. I’ve dealt with it all, but finally she replied to the invite by saying “I will attend your reception, but not ceremony”. The reception is in the next room to the ceremony room in a same building. The reception is 45 minutes after the ceremony. I clearly stated to her that “Reception room is in adjacent room to the ceremony”. And “Reception is for guests who are there to celebrate our marriage. Reception is part of the ceremony.”. She still replied back she’s not attending the ceremony. She claims her kids (9,11,13) are impossible to deal with. They do not have any mental problems that I am aware of.

This is a very small wedding (~40 people). I don’t really care about the money, but it’s meant for small party of close friends and family. I think it’s rude and I don’t want people who are there to make trouble. So I took her reponse as “No” and send her a thanks and it’s too bad she can’t make it email in a very polite tone.

My family is quite rude. (My father tells me that most marriage won’t last more then 3.5 years 2 months before my wedding.). And I really don’t want her there because of all the headaches she’s caused and she keeps throwing more curve balls. And my parents are just feeding her obnoxious behavior by saying if she doesn’t show up, then they won’t. I just don’t want any trouble, so accepted the fact that it’s best to have a wedding without my family.

Am I insane to disinvite my sister’s family to my wedding when she’s been so rude?



Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

Hi Iggy –

It would be rude of you to take back the invitation.

When you extend an invitation it is up to the guest to accept or decline as she sees fit. I agree that the ceremony is the important part of the wedding but obviously either she doesn’t share that sentiment or she really cannot handle these kids in that type of a setting. It’s unfortunate but it is her decision. If your sister says that her kids are not well behaved in church then it may be a blessing for you not to have them there.

In any case, you have invited her to both the ceremony and the reception and she has accepted the reception portion of the invitation. Imagine if she accepted and then just showed up for the reception? You would surely be upset. At least she came clean and told you the truth. Unless you think she is going to cause some sort of serious scene then just leave things as they are.

Good Luck,


Thank so much for you quick reponse!

Just out of curiosity, If I asked you from her side a question of “I don’t want to go to the ceremony for personal reasons, but I’d like to attend the reception should I respond as I’ll attend just the reception or not go at all?”. What would be your response?”



Donna, Wedding Queen, President; Top Wedding Sites, Inc

Many people do choose to only attend the reception and not the ceremony. It’s not what I think is best, or what I would do, but many do and it is considered acceptable for the guest to choose.

Try not to control these people. Just focus on what’s best for you and your groom and let them choose to do what they will as long as it doesn’t really affect you. I understand that you want your family to be there for the ceremony, I would too. But, the sooner you come to terms with the fact that you cannot control them you’ll be better off. Be as accepting as you can be without becoming a doormat.

Rebecca Black, Etiquette By Rebecca

I couldn’t agree more with all of this. Very well done.


Thanks for your quick response again!