Reader Question: Should I Ask My Sister to be my Maid-of-Honor

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I got a REALLY interesting question from a reader while I was on maternity leave and I just knew that it was one I needed to answer. Why? Because I have personal past experience with this sort of issue and know how awful it can be. From Belinda:

I got a REALLY interesting question from a reader while I was on maternity leave and I just knew that it was one I needed to answer. Why? Because I have personal past experience with this sort of issue and know how awful it can be. From Belinda:

"Hello, I just
stumbled upon your site and love it! I actually must confess that I am
not even engaged yet, but it is on the horizon (hopefully!). The man is a
wonderful, caring person whose family has whole-heartedly been supportive and
loving. My concern enters with my sister. I love her so much, and
she is with an emotionally abusive man, lives far away, and is a very busy
(often overwhelmed) stay at home mom. She is an amazing person and I am
concerned about how to involve her in my wedding when it happens. We
would be having a very low-budget, DIY wedding. I am scared about how to
get her involved as we have never been able to spend much social time together,
and has never really met my friends. I feel obligated to ask her to be my
MOH, but I fear that she would have a difficult time being involved. I
know it is very early to be concerned about these details, but it has been on
my mind. Any suggestions? I apologize for the lengthy explanation.
Any help or thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
"

Florent_vidal_wedding_02
Image Courtesy of: Florent Vidal

There are several ways that I can see to tackle this tricky issue. First, emotionally abusive people are generally incredibly controlling – they want to make all that person's decisions all the time. If you really, really want your sister in your wedding, why not approach HIM and ask first. Icky, I know, but if it means everything to you to have her as your Maid-of-Honor… it might be worth.

My second suggestion is to tell her that you adore her and want her to be in the wedding as a bridesmaid. Let her know that you're having a super tightly budgeted wedding with TONS of DIY so you'll need lots of help. Let her know that you know she's busy and lives far away and would LOVE to help but you can't pull her away from her responsabilities. So, you've asked a close friend to be your MOH – since you'll be needing so much hands on help from her, you thought it was only appropriate.

My final idea is to give her a simple job that's special but not a must-have. Like, doing a reading at the ceremony or giving a speech at the rehearsal dinner. These really are special jobs and would be a wonderful moment for the both of you BUT… should Mr. Controlling decide she can't attend your wedding (a definite possibility in a relationship like that) you won't be rushing around at the last minute trying to fill her spot.

Belinda, I hope this helps you out a little. Watching someone you love be in a abusive relationship is very difficult. Good luck to you!

Anyone else want to offer a helpful suggestion or idea to help Belinda handle this issue?