Hi Sasha, I need your help.  Here’s the situation – my mom is a drunk.  But that’s not the problem;  she has been for much of my life, we’ve tried to get her help, it doesn’t work,  I’ve given up on it, and I’ve come to terms with that.  The problem is I’m getting married in a couple of months and my mom wants to say something at the wedding.  I don’t need a crystal ball to know that this will go horribly, but I don’t know how to tell her I don’t want her doing a speech because that will cause its own problems.  I’m at a loss and I’m starting to get bridezilla!!! My finance has a wonderful family and I don’t want him to give up his family speeches for my drunk mom.  She ruins everything and I refuse to let her ruin this.   Any advice? D.



I wish I could be more positive here, but D, the truth is that every outcome in this situation is going to screw you in one way or another, so it comes down to which option will screw you less.  

There’s no doubt you’ve had to sacrifice a lot because of your mom’s addiction; I can’t imagine how draining and disappointing the years have been.  And sadly I don’t have to look into a crystal ball either to know that your mom isn’t going to get her sh-t together by the time your big day rolls around.

The way I see it, you have three choices:

 1. You let her make a speech.  Chances are she’ll embarrass herself which means no matter how great the rest of the night is, it’ll be the only memory that stands out. 

2. You bar her from doing a speech.  Family drama will ensue and by the time your wedding day arrives you’ll be emotionally spent and miserable.

3. You have zero speeches at your wedding.   

My advice is to go with #3.  As I mentioned before, your mom’s selfishness is going to once again force you to sacrifice something, but at least with this option you’ll get out of it fairly unscathed.   

Now, I know you don’t want to take anything away from your husband’s experience, so what I’d suggest is to set up a booth with a video camera.  Invite your guests to stop by at some point during the reception to say a few words.  This way everyone gets to express all the touching things they want, and damn D, your mom can do all the verbal damage she wants on that thing, but guess what?  You get the power to edit her out - it’s like it never even happened!  No harm, no foul.

I hope this helps and fingers crossed your wedding day is as close to perfect as it can get!

Thanks for writing in and keep your Life + Style questions coming my way here.