Husband on wife: "She said she would leave me if I walked my daughter down the aisle"

Amy Christie

*This article is a work of nonfiction based on actual events recounted to me by a friend who witnessed them firsthand; used with permission

Looking forward to your child's wedding is a unique time in most parents' lives, but sometimes things don't go as planned, particularly if it's not about both spouses' kids.

Being a stepparent can take away some of the joy while preparing for a wedding, and the big day may not seem that important when it's not your kid who's tying the knot.

My friend Dan has been married to his wife Kara for ten years. This is his second marriage. He used to be a widower before he met her, and he also has three daughters from his first marriage.

Kara and Dan didn't have kids, but his daughters always looked up to their stepmom as their good friend and someone whose opinion mattered to them.

"They all liked her, but she never felt comfortable being too close or having them call her mom. She's also disappointed because we didn't have kids, so she's constantly worried that asking my daughters to call her mom would be like covering for something she's lacking," Dan said.

When Kara got married to Dan, his daughters were in school. As time passed, they grew up, finished high school, and moved on to college.

Kara was definitely more comfortable once she and her husband had the house to themselves and generally tried to avoid big family get-togethers.

"She would ask the girls to come one at a time, maybe with a friend or two. She doesn't really like crowds, so I was ok with her wanting fewer people to visit. Unfortunately, she argued with my daughters whenever they wanted to stay overnight," the dad said.

While he kept telling his daughters that they were welcome to stay, Kara's reactions showed the opposite, and she found many reasons why they should shorten their trips home or just have a sleepover at a friend's house.

"That was the one thing that saddened me, that the girls would no longer stay over, but then they are all grown up, so maybe there's no need to, just like my wife says," Dan shared.

Annie, Emma, and Sonja all had boyfriends by the time they graduated from college. And Sonja was soon ready to take things further in her relationship.

Her boyfriend proposed six months after graduation, and she said yes.

"I was so excited when they came to let us know about the wedding date. I always thought about the day when I would see her in a white dress and walk her down the aisle. I'm so proud of her," Dan said.

Kara wasn't that interested in the wedding preparations, though. She left Dan and the groom's parents to figure out all the details about the cake, the menu, the decorations, and the guest list.

"She doesn't have much patience with these things, so I took over, and Shane's parents pitched in too. The three of us managed everything just fine. I didn't feel like I had to stress Kara with what was going on; there were so many catering questions and flower issues. I'm just happy we made it in time," Dan said.

Two weeks before the wedding, Kara told him they needed to talk. Dan thought she wanted to get a last-minute present for Sonja, but when he found out what it was about, he didn't know what to say.

"She said she would leave me if I walked my daughter down the aisle. Kara thinks it's an offense to her if I do that because we have no kids. She's ok with going to the wedding and taking photos, but not with the part about the aisle. But I already promised my daughter. I don't want a divorce either," Dan said.

He didn't agree when they talked but said he'd think about it. Still, he was confused about his wife's request, and the next day he asked her again if she had meant it.

"Kara said it was serious and that she couldn't accept that. I don't want a life without her, and I can't disappoint my daughter. Should I just say I'm not feeling well?" Dan said.

He's not sure what the best solution is, and as the wedding gets closer, his options get fewer. He hasn't told his daughter either because he's sure she would agree to skip going down the aisle just to avoid Kara divorcing him.

How do you think this should be handled? Did Kara make a fair request, or is it too late to demand that right before the wedding takes place? Should Dan put his wife first or do all he can to make his daughter's wedding day happy regardless of what his wife says?

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Amy Christie is a passionate writer and journalist, always striving to bring out the positive and create meaningful connections.

Dallas, TX

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