Weddings are occasions of laughter, romance and good wishes for the lucky couple.
But putting forward your best side becomes truly difficult when you are invited to an ex’s wedding.
There is hardly any woman who will not, at least once, think that that woman up there with the groom might have been her if things had turned out differently.
Memories of regret and pain can struggle with feelings of envy and embarrassment on such occasions.
So if you have received an invitation to your ex-boyfriend’s wedding, should you go or excuse yourself?
The first thing to consider upon being invited to your ex-boyfriend’s wedding is how you feel about him – now.
It is obvious that your ex has moved on or else he wouldn’t have been getting married in the first place.
It is best you examine your feelings about your breakup and ask yourself if you feel emotionally ready to see him with another woman and that too getting married.
If you both had parted ways since more than a year back, chances are that each of you has come to terms with the breakup.
However if it is relatively recent like three months or less, you might need to be sincere with yourself whether you want to go through this at all.
If you and your ex-boyfriend had had an ugly breakup, maybe it would be better not to attend his wedding.
For instance if you had been physically or emotionally hurt by him or are still involved in a bitter legal conflict with the guy, then it is very unlikely that you would be in the right frame of mind to wish him well.
The very fact that he has sent you an invitation should not pressurize you to accept it or go along – he may simply be trying to psyche you up or trying to rub the fact that he has moved on.
Since you do not really know why he has extended the invitation to you, there is no point speculating about his reasons – it will only leave you emotionally exhausted.
Rather respond promptly with a brief note expressing your regret.
Sometimes the absence of a former partner can excite more gossip than his/her presence.
So if you are thinking of accepting your ex-boyfriend’s wedding invitation just to put to rest doubts about your ability to move on, maybe you should reconsider.
If you attend the wedding in a negative frame of mind, you are bound to feel ill at ease, not to mention suspect everyone present to pity your situation.
The only reason why you are attending your ex’s wedding should be because you have put the past firmly where it belongs and now wish him well.
If you are planning to use the wedding to show up and have it out with your ex or her bride, stop right there in your tracks.
While such scenes appear interesting in fiction and films, this kind of behavior is best avoided in real life.
They are bound to bring nothing but embarrassment and pain for you; and no matter how badly you have been treated by your ex, remember this is his day and you have no right to spoil it.
As long as you indulge in some harmless fantasy about upsetting the jerk’s apple-cart, it is OK, but doing anything more will show you up as childish, immature and one who has definitely not been able to move on since the breakup.
Yet another aspect to this conundrum could be presented about your current partner.
If you are in a steady relationship right now, it would be relevant to consider how your present partner feels about your being invited to an ex’s wedding, much less attend it.
Sound out your partner’s ideas on this – if he reacts with suspicion and alacrity, maybe it would be better to politely decline; unless of course you are ready to put your foot down and insist that if necessary you will go by yourself.
On the other hand if your current partner sees no harm in your attending an ex’s wedding, you are lucky not only to have been given a chance to make peace with your past, but even to have a nice date to keep you company in the present.
Once you have decided to attend your ex’s wedding, write a polite note accepting the it like you would for any other invitation.
Keep it brief since no one wants to hear about your new job or apartment in the letter. All the recipient wants is a simple yes or no and not your life-story.
On the other hand, if you feel that it is better that you stay away, courteously decline the invitation.
You need to conjure an elaborate excuse and you should definitely not bring up your relationship.
It is very unlikely that your ex wants to recall the painful details of your past, especially on occasion of his wedding.
When attending your ex-boyfriend’s wedding, by all means dress to look attractive but not in a way that is an obvious attempt to distract attention from the bride’s appearance.
Avoid wearing white since on this occasion that is the bride’s privilege. Wait for your turn to congratulate your ex well but don’t forget to include his bride in your wishes.
Adopt a polite but casual attitude to the groom as well as his parents. Appearing over-familiar with them is not warranted even if you were quite close to your ex’s family when you were dating him.
At the same time, don’t ignore them pointedly since it would be churlish and petty on your part to walk by without recognizing them.
Finally don’t bring up your relationship with your ex, if you can avoid it.
He will probably be pleased to notice that you have come to share his happiness on his big day, but stay away from pointing out how the band is playing “your” song or mentioning to the guests that he has a thing for beaches and you knew that once married, he would be honeymooning in Hawaii.
Such anecdotes might seem innocuous to you since you have got over the breakup but it may be embarrassing for the groom or leave others with different ideas.