To invite or not to invite, that is the question. It is easy to imagine a wedding where the couple and their guests all get on really well, despite recent divorces, failed romances, hurt feelings, gossip and lingering resentments about past relationships that still exist. Unfortunately, that may not be the reality of the day.

Man watching ex-partner as she walks with new lover

When considering whether you should invite an ex-partner to your wedding, first of all think about why you want to invite them. Are they friends with your partner? There are answers to these questions that would make it absolutely fine to have an ex at your wedding. However, unless your partner and your guests would see it in the same way as you, this may not be such a good idea.

So, if this is something you really want to do, ask your other half. They may say it’s fine, but do they really mean it or are they just saying what you want to hear? You need to discuss this answer quietly and with no pressure on them to agree. This is a time for openness and complete honesty, not a time for covering up true feelings with a false, tight lipped smile or putting on a brave face.

You may have moved on and your ex is merely a memory of another life. Does your partner feel the same though or do they think you still have covert feelings for them? Likewise, if you would rather your partner’s ex was on the other side of the world then you must say so.

Focus on the Future

Then ask yourself — where do you want the focus of the day to be; on the future, or in the past? Do you really want to walk down the aisle having eye-to-eye contact with a former lover before you marry?

This reminds me of the episode of ‘Friends’, where Ross is in a dilemma whether to invite his ex-partner Rachel to his wedding with Emily. And, as if to make things worse, he says Rachel’s name at the altar when exchanging marital vows!

I think that says it all. The past is the past and that is exactly where it should remain — for both of you.

Quick Tips:

  • The details of your old relationships need to be buried, and if they haven’t been and are getting in the way then talk to your partner and tell them that you need to have a conversation with your former partner in order to do so.
  • The most important thing is to have complete openness in your relationship so there is clarity on all sides.
  • Don’t waste time carrying a grudge. It is just going to eat away at your emotions and take up valuable time and energy.
  • You need to discuss how involved ex-girlfriends and ex-boyfriends will be in your new life together — if at all — once you have married.

Guest post by Carole Spiers, Love and Relationship Expert

Image from Flickr by Kurt Bauschardt (CC BY-SA 2.0 License)