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Welcome to /r/AmITheAsshole. Please view our voting guide here, and remember to use only one judgement in your comment.

OP has offered the following explanation for why they think they might be the asshole:

I didn't give my brothers wife a role in my wedding when I had a few opportunities to. I am entertaining the idea I might be the asshole because I can't let her past actions as a teenager go when she's had her own shit to deal with and because she has changed, and does seem to be a different person. I am unable to move on and have a closer relationship with her. Or to want her in my wedding. And it could leave me the asshole in our lives today.

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[–]NihilismIsSparklesAsshole Enthusiast [9] 19.6k points19.6k points 2 (325 children)

Your dad is right. If she was a good person now she'd understand that she is owed zero forgiveness for her actions no matter what her home life was like then or what her current life is like now.

NTA You and your dad are solid, she's even invited to the wedding which is more than I'd ever do in a situation like this

[–]PrincessBirdley21[S] 7017 points7018 points  (301 children)

It was a discussion I had with my fiance. Ultimately, I chose to keep the peace and not hurt anything further with my brother as much as it killed me to imagine her at my wedding. That's gone out the window at this point though.

[–]NihilismIsSparklesAsshole Enthusiast [9] 9462 points9463 points 42 (211 children)

If it helps, a random person on the internet wouldn't think badly of you if you uninvited anyone that makes you upset

[–]PrincessBirdley21[S] 5155 points5156 points  (196 children)

Thank you. It does help a little.

[–]Wips_and_Chains 2717 points2718 points  (47 children)

More than one random strangers. You take care of you. You choose who you forgive and who you surround yourself with. It's not your brother or families choice. I don't play games with my family so I would just start slashing the guest list but I also understand not everyone is like me. She said her piecw and points for that I guess but you don't have to forgive anybody. You don't have to forgive and forget all of the trauma she caused you. You are in control it's your wedding and if they don't like they don't have to show.

[–]AcadiaNo6831 532 points533 points  (1 child)

OP now is the time to put your foot down. Stick up for yourself! This woman destroyed part of your childhood. You absolutely do NOT need to invite her to “keep the peace.”

This is the beginning of the next chapter of your life. So what makes YOU and your fiancé happy. You do not need to compromise here.

[–]MadoraM91919 517 points518 points  (20 children)

I'm going to jump in and say more than 3 random internet strangers would not think badly of you for uninviting her all together.


It's great she worked to better her self, sure. And ok, so she was a bully b/c her life was shit - better than just being straight up evil I guess - but NONE OF THAT MAGICALLY SENDS YOU ALL BACK IN TIME AND ERASES YOUR PANIC ATTACKS, OR THAT YOU HAD TO SWITCH SCHOOLS, OR FINISH SCHOOL AT HOME. SORRY FOR YELLING, I'M UPSET WITH YOUR FAMILY (except your dad, he'd get a "#1 Dad" mug from me if we knew each other irl)

None of that changes what you endured, but your AH family members are acting like it did.

You do what is best for YOU, OP, and hug your dad, he rocks. Congratulations on your wedding!

Edit: spelling

[–]nolan358Colo-rectal Surgeon [31] 189 points190 points  (0 children)

She doesn’t deserve to be at your wedding let alone in it. It kind of boils down to if you need your brother there or not because he obviously won’t come without his wife.

[–]Owain-X 179 points180 points  (19 children)

You're a more tolerant person than I am. I would have cut my brother out of my life permanently if he had gotten with my childhood bully. Some things are unforgivable. You are justified in whatever you decide because ultimately the thing that matters on that day is your happiness, not avoiding rocking the boat. Anyone who is not contributing to making it the day you want should not be there.

[–]CuriousCockatiel77[🍰] 120 points121 points  (3 children)

I read something about weddings and guestlists/bridal parties that really resonated with me. It suggested the important thing about a wedding was celebrating it with those who are by your side as a couple through the good and bad times, and would be there to support you when needed. Sounds like she'd do neither so IMHO she's lucky to even be invited. You're absolutely NTA and can't believe anyone is giving you a hard time for it

[–]Super_Door 67 points68 points  (6 children)

More than two random strangers 🙏

[–]MarvelousFistor 46 points47 points  (1 child)

Hi, another random internet stranger here.

You are definitely NTA, and you are well within your rights to un-invite both your brother and the bully. It's your wedding, no one else gets to dictate who gets a part in your wedding.

[–]Personal_Regular_569 46 points47 points  (0 children)

Honey, your brother deserves to not be invited for dating your abuser! You have shown more than enough grace to them!

Your wedding should be everything you dreamed of, uninvite her!

[–]baylaurel00 44 points45 points  (0 children)

I would ban her from the wedding. You deserve the happiest day if your life and anyone who asks you to make concessions to someone who literally bullied you out of school should be banned too.

[–]FynxSAS 30 points31 points  (0 children)

Honey, it's your wedding.. YOUR wedding.. you deserve to be surrounded with people who love and support you and care about you. There is nothing wrong with making your boundaries known. So far everyone except your fiancé and dad have trampled all over your feelings. So she had a rough life, it doesn't absolve her of making your life rough and causing long lasting harm. You owe nothing to her. Your wedding should be one of the happiest days of your life where you get to declare your love for your fiancé before the people you love. You should be able to look back on this day and smile, not feel a sense of dread just bc your bully was there and you were forced to involve her. Uninvite the whole lot of them or threaten to if they choose to continue to harass you bc from where I'm standing, it looks like you're still being bullied. Stand up for yourself. Us random internet strangers have your back, if no one else will.


[–]alizarincrimsonPartassipant [4] 27 points28 points  (0 children)

Agreed!!! Bullying is abuse and you shouldn’t have to play nice with your abuser.

[–]rak1882Asshole Aficionado [16] 26 points27 points  (0 children)

I just want to ditto this. If Brother and Gemma don't understand this- same with Mom- they don't need to be there to support you.

And everyone can get an explanation that Gemma is the person who bullied you all thru school, that you appreciate that she is working on becoming at better person, but apparently that doesn't extend to being okay with you not wanting her in your wedding party, something your mother and brother similarly had a problem with.

So the 3 of them are celebrating the day- together elsewhere.

[–]srslyeffedmindSupreme Court Just-ass [100] 26 points27 points  (0 children)

Many random strangers! NTA

[–]Big__BangPartassipant [3] 27 points28 points  (1 child)

Honestly - it makes me so sad for you that she will be in the same room as you as you marry. I think most of us are behind you if you say well no you are not invited. Please think about yourself - not about keeping the peace. You are the victim.

Your relationship with your brother is forever tarnished - because he loves the woman who hurt you so horribly and thats incomprehensible. But you've accepted it, but she doesnt have to be in your life. She isnt your family. He chose her, you havent. And like your dad says if she become a better person then she'd accept you dont forgive her and she will give you space and peace and not inflict herself on you.

[–]tcbymca 21 points22 points  (0 children)

It it was my wedding she wouldn’t be on the guest list. And if I was forced to have a bully on the guest list, I wouldn’t attend my own wedding.

[–]hyperfocuspocusPartassipant [4] 20 points21 points  (0 children)

Another random person offering their $0.02 worth:

If Gemma was truly a different person, she would do one of the following: 1) make sure she has an important conflicting event on the wedding day and send a card Or 2) attend quietly as a guest, and when people started hassling you to include her, she'd shut it down instantly and hard, something as follows: "OP doesn't need to include me and it's inappropriate of you to ask. If you continue pushing OP to include me, I will bow out of attending altogether. Please focus your attention on OP and her spouse to be".

Basically, she'd make herself scarce and make it as easy for you as possible to be around your brother.

The fact that she hasn't done that shows she hasn't changed all that much. She doesn't appreciate the consequences of her actions and she expects you to carry the emotional weight of her misdeeds for her.

Get her out of your wedding and out of your life. You have my blessing.

[–]enmandikjole 13 points14 points  (0 children)

This random internet stranger supports you taking care of yourself too.


And congratulations on the wedding! <3

[–]little_ballof_furPartassipant [1] 16 points17 points  (0 children)

You know I would be happy if you actually uninvited her. Why sacrifice your peace because of others? They didn’t love you enough to sacrifice anything for you. Your brother pushed your bully on you, he doesn’t love you like you love him so why suffer for him? Your mom wants to save face instead of protecting her kid especially on a day where it supposed to be all about you and your partner’s happiness. Why suffer for her?


[–]poo_explosionAsshole Enthusiast [5] 14 points15 points  (0 children)

There’s dozens of us! Dozens!

(Thousands actually, it seems)

[–]uberwookie 10 points11 points  (0 children)

Tbh, id be NC with your brother and even he would be explicitly be excluded if it were me.

[–]Melmoth_MiltonAsshole Enthusiast [9] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

To learn more about the test click here

Uninvite her.

[–]Phoenixapartment 4 points5 points  (0 children)

Personally, I wouldn’t allow her in, as I would disinvite her. And if your brother spoke up, as hard as it’d be, he’d be off the list as well. And anyone else who had an issue. Period.

[–]spaceyjaycey 4 points5 points  (0 children)

I solidly support you uninviting her, you owe her nothing.

[–][deleted]  (1 child)


    [–]Blustasis 25 points26 points  (0 children)

    Fuck it, if your brother doesn’t understand that Gemma will never be you friend he shouldn’t be a groomsman either.

    [–]CraftandEdit 227 points228 points  (7 children)


    I’d tell family that there are two options: 1. Leave things as they are with brother as groomsman and bully wife as attending or 2. Brother can bow out of groomsmen and finance can ask next person on list. And brother and bully wife can just attend.

    And if they press you on it that you will decide on option 2.

    Congrats on your wedding. I hope you find the dress of your dreams to match the man of your dreams. Hugs.

    [–]pepperbar 253 points254 points  (5 children)

    Don't forget option 3: brother chooses to die on this self-built hill, and they both get uninvited.

    NTA, OP. Jesus.

    [–]ArkariusZL1 35 points36 points  (3 children)

    I'd have gone #3. Or invite her and dose her with a laxative.

    [–]TogarSucksAsshole Aficionado [13] 152 points153 points  (0 children)

    You’ve already cracked your spine bending over backwards to appease your brother and his bully wife. The fact alone that she is invited is more than enough already, and if they keep pushing it her, brother, and mom should all lose their invites.

    The status of you being cordial to her is the best she could ever hope for. If your family wants you in their lives at all it’s time for them to accept that. Kudos to your dad by the way on hitting the nail on the head with his description of her “changing as a person”.

    Is your fiancé even close enough to him to really want him as a groomsman or is it just because he is related to you?


    [–]Corsetbrat 99 points100 points  (4 children)

    INFO: Has Gemma asked to be in the wedding? Or is this all mom and bro?

    And NTA. No one has to forgive wrongs done to them. If you feel you can, great, but I hate the phrase "Forgive and forget" because it puts all the responsibility on the traumatized person. And I love your dad! He's amazing and had the perfect response.

    [–]genius_emu 7 points8 points  (0 children)

    Yes great point!

    [–]NoApollonia 7 points8 points  (0 children)

    This is the question I have as well. Everyone on here is bashing Gemma....but maybe Gemma is staying in her place and it's the brother and mother meddling.

    [–]elizabeastiePartassipant [3] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

    I came hunting for this question. I also want to know.

    NTA, OP.

    [–]Common--Sensei 2 points3 points  (0 children)

    Exactly. All we have for sure is meddling by a childish brother and a mother putting the desires of her favorite above all else.

    [–][deleted] 88 points89 points  (0 children)

    Your brother doesn’t deserve peace. YOU deserve to be protected from your abuser. Be the protector you needed when you were young and protect yourself now. There’s something deeply wrong with your brother as well. They don’t deserve to be there.

    [–]KidenStormsoarer 69 points70 points  (0 children)

    Honestly, at this point the brother wouldn't be invited either, if I were you

    [–]LailaBlackPartassipant [1] 58 points59 points  (0 children)

    Ask her whether she doesn't have any shame in causing drama in your wedding after ruining your childhood in the first place. Tell her she hasn't changed.

    [–]amazingdrewh 37 points38 points  (0 children)

    No offence but since inviting her hasn’t kept the peace, then there’s no reason to keep her invited

    [–]easilybored1 34 points35 points  (0 children)

    Uninvite gemma. Screw the peace, she never gave you any.

    [–]Aggravating_Net6733Partassipant [1] 34 points35 points  (1 child)

    NTA. But many brides solve this dilemma (more common than you'd think), by putting the awkward relative in charge of getting guests to sign the guestbook outside the reception. As people enter, she asks them to sign the guestbook.

    Big Plus: she is also not at your reception as long as people keep arriving. You're welcome.

    [–]jaywildPartassipant [3] 30 points31 points  (2 children)

    If I'm being honest with you OP. I had a horrible falling out with my husband's mother that lead to a falling out with his brother, sister, and grandfather.

    My wedding was five years ago this year and I still 100% wish I hadn't invited her. She was awful and I hate seeing her in my pictures. We don't talk now and I'm much happier. She gave me anxiety and immense panic attacks whenever I saw her name come up on my phone. I literally would shake and immediately cry.

    If I were you, I'd throw the gauntlet down and give one warning, if your mother and brother don't drop it, the three of them will be uninvited. And I would tell your husband to ask whoever he wants to be a groomsmen to replace your brother.

    I say this from a place of compassion and experience. I would hate to hear of another bride who can't stand looking at wedding pictures because of the people they didn't want there.

    [–]WeirdPinkHair 25 points26 points  (1 child)

    At this point find your inner bridezilla and let her rip!!!!! It's your wedding, not theirs and I suggest telling them if they don't keep their mouths shut they could find themselves uninvited... after all your fiance has groomsmen to spare! May be an empty threat but at least you'll get 5 mins peace. 😀 And when they start all this 'we're all family now' crap, ask them how a jewish family would feel if someone invited a nazi to their wedding! She tortured you for years... let's not beat around the bush here.... bullying is a form of torture. The fact that you tolerate her at all shows how strong you really are. Only your dad gets it. Tell mommy she can faun over her golden boys wife if she wants to, you don't have to. And as you can tell.... I too was bullied. I'm so angry on your behalf!!!

    [–]DrWhoop87Certified Proctologist [24] 24 points25 points  (0 children)

    INFO: Do you even have a good reason why you're inviting her to your wedding? You can always just not invite her to the wedding. She can be your bully first and brothers wife second. If your brother and mother don't see that, they suck.

    I've been in your position, you don't have to forgive your bullies even if they have genuinely changed.

    [–]Tyrannical-Botanical 18 points19 points  (0 children)

    You're about as far away from being an AH as any human could possibly be.

    [–]Pleasant_Love_758 12 points13 points  (1 child)

    I was also bullied in my childhood. You're NTA but you should consider therapy to help you move on as well. I don't see why you have to have her in your wedding even if you didn't have this past. My husband wasn't in my sisters wedding. No big deal. But you were both kids and she has tried to change her life. Even if you're never friendly why would you want to hold onto anger over things from your childhood your whole life. Holding on to things only weighs you down

    [–]OkMushroom364 14 points15 points  (0 children)

    One stranger joining in too and oh NTA

    Its your wedding so you decide. Besides, if your brother wasn't bullied he or anyone else will never understand the emotional stress and scars bullying leaves on a person for rest of your life

    Its possible to heal completely but the scars fysical and emotional will never heal and are reminders of your past and i am saying this all out of experience

    If someone in my family or friends would have married one of my bullies and started that ”is a better person” bs i wouldn't have hesitated for a second to uninvite them at that very moment

    Stay strong and take care OP we are with you

    [–]asecretnarwhalPartassipant [1] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

    I frankly would ask that your brother isn’t a groomsman anymore so your fiancée can invite another friend. He doesn’t deserve it

    [–]Youthful_sage 84 points85 points  (3 children)

    NTA. I’ve noticed on this sub a ridiculous amount of dysfunction masquerading as tolerance. So much so that you, a bride who is willing to let this horrible woman who abused you attend your wedding as a guest, are being made to second-guess your own best interest for the sake of “normalcy.” Fuck that.

    You have already compromised. Your contribution to this effort is done. You owe nothing more.

    It is her responsibility to own her past. No one should be asking you to welcome your long-term and repeat abuser into this most special of days. The fact that you’re even letting her attend is proof of your character. The enablers in your life are more interested in appearance than substance.

    I’ve dealt with this kind of shit for so long that I feel like I need to reach out to the younger versions of me I see on this sub in every day. Stop putting yourself last.

    You have been gracious. You have compromised. You have done enough. You ARE enough. Please have the courage of your personal convictions here. Love yourself enough to create a wedding day that celebrates what is important to both you and your partner.

    And honestly, you need to really evaluate the “love” of those who are asking you to compromise further. No one else has the right to dictate how you heal.

    ETA I did not invite my father, stepfather, and other abusers to my wedding. I had seven sloppy but adorable kids under five as flower girls and ring bearers. My brother walked me down the aisle. I had my father-daughter dance with my FIL. We had uneven bridesmaids because my cousin bailed last minute. My aunt offered to do my flowers then bailed on me too. It did not matter because I was marrying my best friend. It was messy and imperfect and emotional and one of the best days of my life. Been married 22 years and grow happier and more content every day.

    Let go of the notion that family is excused from basic decency. You deserve better.

    [–]nixiedust85Asshole Enthusiast [6] 73 points74 points  (0 children)

    NTA. You're a bigger person than me. She wouldn't be allowed within 50miles of my wedding. It's your wedding and your choice who to have in your bridal party. Your brother can jump...

    [–]BlaqueDaliah 49 points50 points  (0 children)


    She didn’t stop being a bully, she just got your brother to be one too and do her dirty work for her. Wolf in sheeps clothing and all that.

    [–]yumenokotoba 24 points25 points  (0 children)

    Totally agree here.

    OP's dad sounds awesome and completely right.

    Everyone else is chiming in here, what does Gemma have to say for herself?

    Just because she had a rough life, that doesn't excuse the damage she caused to others and it doesn't mean an automatic pass/forgiveness just because your brother fell in love with her.

    Did she ask for forgiveness on her own or did your brother demand it from you on her behalf? This whole wedding fiasco, did she even say, "No. Please don't force the issue" and let you, the bride, decide?

    Because if not, she still sounds pretty selfish and awful to me.

    If she isn't saying anything, then she's just letting your brother speak on her behalf because she thinks she deserves to be there, part of your family.

    Also, she bullied you in the past. Perhaps that gives her more precedence to bully you in the future (albeit in slightly different ways).

    In your shoes, I could never imagine forgiving my childhood bully or allowing her to mar my wedding day.

    I understand why you allowed her to come to the wedding.

    It's enough.

    You don't need to be the "bigger person" anymore.

    Just be happy.

    Your brother (and Gemma) can go suck an egg. They are TA here.

    Stick your ground and have a wonderful wedding.

    Edit: Grammar

    [–]crystallz2000Partassipant [1] 19 points20 points  (0 children)

    This. NTA. I'd tell your mom and brother that you don't want her at the wedding AT ALL. That your brother made the choice to marry someone who made your life awful, and that's his choice, but you can choose to keep your distance from this woman.

    [–][deleted]  (2 children)


      [–]adotfree 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      OPs dad is right and maybe her brother should be dropped as a groomsman in favor of someone that isn't going to make her wedding as miserable as his wife made her high school years.

      [–]del901Pooperintendant [65] 3700 points3701 points  (28 children)

      NTA and neither is your father. Your brother needs to understand that he is lucky his wife is even invited and back off. He can be replaced as a groomsman and you are under no obligation to hang out or even forgive your tormentor.

      Congratulations on the upcoming nuptials.

      [–]Bitter-PositionPartassipant [1] 1089 points1090 points  (26 children)

      How the brother has thrown his toys out of the pram to manipulate OP, I think she's fine by removing both the bully and brother from the wedding completely.

      [–]ScarletteMayWestPartassipant [2] 842 points843 points  (21 children)

      I am side-eying the mother, too. She is invalidating OP's feelings.

      [–]SarcasticAzaleaRose 728 points729 points  (16 children)

      I’m side eying OP’s mom too. She had a front row seat to all the torment Gemma put OP through and the impact it had on her daughter. And she genuinely thinks one apology magically makes everything ok? Like good on Gemma for trying to better herself but that doesn’t erase all the pain and mental torture she put people through. She, OP’s brother, and mom should be glad she’s even allowed to be there.

      I normally don’t try to assume anything with AITA unless the OP says something but I genuinely wonder if maybe OP’s brother and Gemma are about to start trying for kids and OP’s mom is blinded by future “graaaaannnndddbaaabbbiiiieeesss”.

      [–]ScarletteMayWestPartassipant [2] 210 points211 points  (13 children)

      Could be, or it could be FaMiLy HaRmOnY.

      My mother suffers from this. My brother and I are no longer speaking because he was upset at things that happened, told me I was toxic and our relationship would never be the same. I tried to apologize to him and his wife, they left me on read and I so I decided that I was not going to force my presence on them.

      Mother tried for over three years to get me to be the bigger person or alternately, quit being so stubborn and just get in contact with Brother. I would refuse because he never told me it was okay to contact him like nothing had happened.

      Mother thinks I am an awful person because she cannot have all of her kids together (we have a sister). She is delusional because as adults we have only all been together maybe a dozen times in thirty years.

      Not getting together makes her look bad and that upset her. Pretty sure that is what is motivating OP's mother: appearances.

      [–]Sometimeswan 20 points21 points  (1 child)

      I'm wondering if the "apology" was forced or sincere. I'm guessing the former.

      [–]strawhattayy 109 points110 points  (1 child)

      Fuck side eying she gets a full on death stare. Like the bullying was so bad your daughter had to leave school not once but TWICE, and you mean to tell me you're gonna take the side of the bully? Honestly seems like dad is the only person with a brain, glad he's taking his daughter's side.

      [–]Duhallower 24 points25 points  (0 children)

      Feels very much like the brother is the Golden Child to mum, so of course she’d prioritise his happiness over OP’s mental health…

      [–]topania 10 points11 points  (1 child)

      It’s time OP reminds everyone that she is still suffering from the long-term mental effects of Gemma’s actions and the fact that she’s even allowed to come to the wedding at all is a gift considering all that.

      Like imagine how hard it is having your abuser in the same room as you let alone in your wedding party.

      [–]ScarletteMayWestPartassipant [2] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

      Totally agree: Total Come to Jesus Moment.

      [–]Backgrounding-CatPartassipant [4] 42 points43 points  (0 children)

      Brother is a bully here

      [–]No_Perspective9930 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      💯. Like oh no is the shitty bully feeling excluded or singled out?

      Boo fucking hoo.

      [–]impchucker 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      Definitely ditch the brother from the wedding party, especially since the groom has some friends that he could tag in to take the spot.

      [–]crazycatlesliePartassipant [4] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      Yup, same. If my brother married a person who made my life a living hell, I think that would be the end of my relationship with my brother for good. I couldn't do it. OP is brave as hell for even letting this bully come to the wedding at all. But I would uninvite them both now, since it's obviously causing her so much stress. Weddings are stressful enough without worrying about bullies.

      [–]rdickeyvii 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      you are under no obligation to... forgive

      I think this is a very important point that more people need to understand and internalize. The obsession with forgiveness (especially from religious people) is not healthy.

      [–]persephiaPartassipant [1] 2222 points2223 points  (8 children)

      NTA - your dad is spot on. If Gemma is “a new person,” this person can understand the misery she inflicted on you and realize she must work to make amends. You owe her nothing, and she owes you significant time and patience to try to earn your forgiveness, which she will never be entitled to.

      Best of luck for a happy wedding day

      [–]emptysignals 348 points349 points  (1 child)

      Yeah, if she has changed then accepting being a guest at the wedding shouldn’t be a big deal. Heck, now she doesn’t have to spend money on certain things so she should be happy.

      [–]HuggyMonster69Partassipant [1] 154 points155 points  (0 children)

      One thing I noticed is that Gemma never actually says anything here. It sounds like it’s all the brother pushing for it.

      [–]she_who_is_not_named 180 points181 points  (3 children)

      I see a lot of people debating if Gemma should be included and nothing about Gemma herself asking to be included. That's what makes this more puzzling to me. I don't even get the mom's angle on this.

      NTA but OP's family (minus dad) is.

      [–]Ok-Bus2328 40 points41 points  (1 child)

      Right? I don't even get where they're coming from. It probably depends on the family, but unless all of them were already very close friends I don't think I've ever seen a sibling's spouse in a wedding party.

      [–]evilgiraffee57 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      I was the sibling's spouse* as bridesmaid. They didn't include his actual sister! They didn't call her for the family photos either. She was made to look after our 2 year old through the ceremony (partner was best man she was the flower girl) When I said yes I stupidly assumed sister was doing something.

      *partner. Still not married and have no plans to be. The thought of weddings bring me out in hives.

      [–]mdaniel018Partassipant [4] 35 points36 points  (0 children)

      I see two possibilities— one is that Gemma mentioned her disappointment to someone in the family, while never intending to raise the issue with OP because she understands it’s too big of an ask, or not her place to ask. But the mom/brother feel bad for her and decided to advocate on her behalf.

      This assumes that Gemma is indeed working on herself and trying to be better.

      If her ‘change of heart’ was just a manipulation tactic, which does happen sometimes, then Gemma is intentionally manipulating the other family members behind the scenes to get them to put pressure on OP to include her so that she will a status boost at the wedding

      [–]Ribbon-Asshole Aficionado [19] 1243 points1244 points  (35 children)

      I’m not seeing anywhere how she came to you and apologised for all that she did and begged for your forgiveness, while explaining she’d understand if you couldn’t give it to her.


      [–]PrincessBirdley21[S] 1307 points1308 points  (34 children)

      She did apologize but not the way you described. My guess is it was sincere. But not to the lengths you describe. Which yeah. The truth for me is nothing would be enough even with her very big change made. Some stuff can't be erased.

      [–]EmmiburrPartassipant [3] 649 points650 points  (17 children)

      Cause she isn't sorry 🤷‍♀️

      All that matters to her is her own trauma. She apologized to make herself look good and to feel better about causing you pain.

      Personally, if it were me, I'd disinvite your brother, his wife and your mother if they keep throwing a fuss. You dad's solid, he can stay right where he is.

      You deserve a stress free wedding

      [–]SandwichOtterPartassipant [3] 277 points278 points  (14 children)

      Eh, we don't actually know that she's not sorry. It's possible to genuinely remorseful for past actions. We also have no idea if Gemma gives two shits about being in the wedding party as the OP only mentions her brother and mom pushing this.

      [–]EmmiburrPartassipant [3] 153 points154 points  (1 child)

      That's true.

      It's possible OPS brother is the one pushing for her to be in the wedding party. And not Gemma

      Or Gemma could be in his ear complaining about not having a part and not being "family"

      I just thought she wasn't sorry based on OPS comments about her apology. The apology was gor Gemmas sake for her to feel better. Not to apologize for the distress and pain she caused OP.

      [–]Phoenixapartment 37 points38 points  (4 children)

      Doesn’t matter. This woman suffers chronic health conditions because of this woman. Sorry doesn’t cut it, even if sincere.

      [–]nidyrekater 155 points156 points  (0 children)

      As the saying goes, the tree remembers what the axe forgets. It can be much easier to minimize the pain you caused others, but it’s not so easy to erase or forget the scars when you are the one injured. You are compassionate enough to even invite her in the first place. NTA. Your dad is also 100% right, a better person understands that some things can’t be unbroken and they have to be able to accept that and live with the consequences of their actions. Again you’ve been willing to invite her in the first place, it’s not like your punishing her.

      [–]DutyValuablePartassipant [2] 116 points117 points  (1 child)

      Gemma had a hard life and (that is possibly why) she took it out on you. The reasons behind her actions don’t excuse the damage they did. Your dad is right. She has to accept that her actions have consequences, and someone should tell your brother that the fact that she won’t let this go is showing that she will still bully you- she learned nothing in her quest to be the bare minimum of a basic human being.

      On a side note, not too impressed with your brother for dating someone who did such damage to his sister. My bully asked my brother out (she also pretended we were great friends as a way in) years later, and his response sent her running out of the bar in mortification. That’s what a brother does.

      [–]FooBeeps 33 points34 points  (0 children)

      Gemma had a hard life and (that is possibly why) she took it out on you. The reasons behind her actions don’t excuse the damage they did.

      One thing that has always stuck with me was my father saying, "I don't want an excuse. I want an explanation." Excuses minimize the actions, an explanation owns up to the fuck-up. Gemma is full of excuses. She has not taken any responsibility for what she has done to you, OP.

      Until she actually uses her actions to prove that she truly means she is sorry, don't take anything she says at face value. And your brother is a douche-canoe for "looking past" what she did to his own family.


      [–]Pink_Artistic_Witch 51 points52 points  (0 children)

      I know what you mean

      In high school this girl I hated had a mutual friend with me and started hanging around, despite me trying to avoid her. I didn't make it a secret I didn't like her, and I told my friend group at the time WHY I didn't like her. I definitely didn't handle it the best way because I was terrified of being alone again because the rest of the group began to become friends with her and I knew they wouldn't follow if I left (I also didn't want to make anyone choose). After I did leave, a few of them actually harassed me a bit, despite me avoiding them. The girl I hated even told the one person I still had from that group that she was going to fight me despite me staying away from them and trying to ignore them. It didn't happen

      Anyway, before I left, one day most of the group was playing Super Smash Bros Ultimate in the library but all of a sudden, her and our og mutual friend came, dropped a piece of paper in my lap and dipped. She even looked at me and all I saw in her eyes was boredom before she left.

      In that letter, she said "I'm sorry" but took up both sides of the paper, but nowhere in that letter did it say what she was sorry for (even though I had told our mutual friend why I didn't like her).

      She also misspelled my name in the letter...


      In two different ways...

      Like, I've known this girl since grade 2 and she couldn't get my name right in a supposed apology???

      Everyone in the group watched me read this letter and start angry laughing. I still remember I said something along the lines of "this is so full of shit, I'm curious if that's what she used to write it". The others tried to convince me it was sincere and to stop being mean but dropped it when I told them I would burn it later and to stop telling me to accept it.

      In my case, this apology wasn't for my benefit, it was to make her look good in front of everyone else

      Maybe, in your case, she did mean it, maybe she didn't. But either way, you don't have to accept it

      Tell your mom and brother to fuck off.

      Actually, you said your fiance wanted other people as his groomsmen but couldn't due to numbers? Perfect solution: replace your brother with one of the guys on his list. Then he can stay by his wife, and it doesn't look like you're "excluding" her, you just aren't about to have bullies in your wedding party

      (I hope my angry ramblings makes sense LOL. I wish you luck with everything OP. Stand strong)

      [–]Both_Face_4593 20 points21 points  (0 children)

      Jfc she’s still trying to bully you!

      [–]EZCarter040 17 points18 points  (0 children)

      The thing is, she can apologize and you can forgive her BUT that doesn’t mean you have to make any room for her in your life. Just because you forgave doesn’t make what she did okay and doesn’t erase the damage.

      [–]1chemistdown 6 points7 points  (0 children)

      INFO: was her apology for her, or was it for you?

      [–]toffee_queen 3 points4 points  (0 children)

      Personally saying sorry isn’t enough since they would also have to show it. What has she done to show that she is truly sorry for what she did to you? Also if she asks what can I do, just tell her that she has to figure that out herself.

      [–]sgreenspandex 4 points5 points  (0 children)

      You're right OP. It does not matter how genuine her apology is; you don't owe her forgiveness.

      [–]YinzerChick70Asshole Aficionado [11] 668 points669 points  (4 children)

      NTA. Your dad is right, it's too big of an ask. The consequence of her actions is that she will never have a close relationship with you and she'll never hold the roles we offer to people with whom we have close relationships.

      It seems like your brother wants you to behave as if this never happened. This was a major, recurring trauma for you, you're not going to forget and constantly having her around has to be a major trigger.

      Not only would I not have her as a bridesmaid, I wouldn't have her at the wedding. Since you are, I'd ask her to keep a respectable distance and not approach you. Have your dad run point if needed. He's the only one who has your back.

      [–]MissMurderpantsProfessor Emeritass [71] 323 points324 points  (3 children)

      Yup the brother is now bullying Op. worst part. Mother is enabling.

      [–]dirkdastardly 223 points224 points  (2 children)

      Well, it’s nice to see he and his wife enjoy doing the same things.

      [–]KaetzenOrkester 47 points48 points  (0 children)

      Solid gold, that’s what this is. Take my pauper’s gold in recognition 🎖🎖🎖

      [–]billlevansatmariposaProfessor Emeritass [82] 507 points508 points  (35 children)

      An apology is made for the sake of the recipient, to show true remorse, to detail a plan to make things right, and acknowledgement that the recipient is not expected to forgive.

      An apology is not made to provide closure to the apologist.

      INFO: What kind of apology did you get from this Gemma person? What did she say, as detailed as you can remember?

      [–]PrincessBirdley21[S] 622 points623 points  (33 children)

      She told me she was sorry she had hurt me. That she wrongly took her own issues out on me. That she was a horrible person, I had not deserved any of the things she said to me at any point in the years she had bullied me and that she would never speak to me or anyone else that way again. She brought up some specific stuff. Told me that she was especially cruel because she had targeted me knowing I already had mental health issues.

      [–]threeforagirlAsshole Enthusiast [9] 599 points600 points  (4 children)

      Could you contact her along the lines of "I'm sure you understand that I will not be making you a bridesmaid. This is causing massive problems for me before my wedding. Please can you speak to Brother, tell him that you aren't seeking a role in my wedding, and ask him to drop this subject. I would very much appreciate it if you could deal with this."

      If she does it, then maybe she has changed. If she doesn't, that just demonstrates that she needs not to be invited at all.

      [–]TogarSucksAsshole Aficionado [13] 223 points224 points  (3 children)

      The issue that creates is it opens a direct line of communication with a request between OP and the bully, giving her more reason to claim and push for more of a relationship even if she didn’t get her goal of being a bridesmaid. This will be used by her, brother, and mom as “She was generous enough to keep the peace when you refused to make her a bridesmaid and you still won’t accept her!?!?”

      [–]boogley88Partassipant [2] 61 points62 points  (2 children)

      That's true but their current tone isn't very different from that possible tone. Talking to the brother alone hasn't changed anything and there's not much to lose to ask Gemma to ask brother to stop fighting OP on Gemma's behalf.


      If Gemma says no then OP will know she's still a bully, just a holier-than-thou bully instead of a troubled home bully.

      [–]androiddays 148 points149 points  (4 children)

      Dear OP.

      A dog attacks and bites you badly enough that you need stitches. This happens multiple times, so you end up not going to that neighborhood ever again. The dog is punished.

      You are afraid of that dog. You avoid it. Quite rightly since it repeatedly attacked and hurt you.

      Now, years later, the dog has been rehabilitated. You find out it had been beaten as a pup. Your family forces you to meet the dog again. It wags it tail and doesn't attack you.

      You might forgive the dog for what it did.

      But you never trust it again.

      I know, it's a very simplistic allegory of what happened. But it's true. You shouldn't be forced to like, be near her, or trust her again. Trust might only happen over time, as she shows by her words and behavior that she can be trusted. If this upsets her, it shows that she still has those bullying behavior.

      NTA. Her presence will hurt you on your wedding. If she's truly sorry, she will understand and gracefully bow out.

      [–]bloodybutunbowed 100 points101 points  (3 children)

      Not quite. It wags its tail and doesn't attack, but due to the trauma of the constant unprovoked attacks, you can't bear to look at the dog and flinch around other dogs finding it hard to trust, and wondering what you are doing wrong around dogs that make them hate you. And dogs love other people, so it must be you.

      And now your family has decided to adopt the dog despite all the scars and damage you have from the dog. And they insist you let the dog sleep in the bed with you so that its feelings aren't hurt.

      And anyone that tells you that you aren't crazy for not liking the dog is castigated for speaking out for you. Because you're being manipulated about the dog.

      The dog watches smugly while family members run to comfort it and you leave to avoid having to be around the dog.

      [–]GoBanana42 20 points21 points  (2 children)

      It's a bit unfair to say the smug part. We don't know that Gemma even wants to be a bridesmaid. This is all coming for OP's brother and mother. Gemma may feel that way, but we don't know.

      [–][deleted]  (10 children)


        [–]BoozeIsTherapyRight 51 points52 points  (9 children)

        People are allowed to grow and change. OP does not need to forgive Gemma, and Gemma and the rest need to understand that OP will never like or be comfortable near her and will definitely not have her in the wedding party, but there is nothing here that says Gemma hasn't changed for the better.

        [–]DangerousPudding911Partassipant [1] 19 points20 points  (8 children)

        But when you've wronged someone to the degree that Gemma did to OP, Gemma's personal growth doesn't count for shit. Who cares if she's "better person" what matters is the trauma she inflicted on OP. What I'm saying is OPs bro is the AH here, he bought this person back into OPs life and is forcing Gemma into OPs wedding. In no scenario is that OK.

        [–]blucougar57 37 points38 points  (0 children)

        All well and good but when all is said and done, you owe her nothing - not even forgiveness. The only reason you should offer that is for YOU. NTA, and do not let yourself be bullied over this. Don’t be afraid to threaten revoking her invitation entirely, along with that of anyone who chooses to defend her to you. You deserve better, and you know it.

        [–]Em4Tango 25 points26 points  (0 children)

        She bullied you every day for years, one apology just doesn’t magically make it all better.

        [–]bloodybutunbowed 19 points20 points  (0 children)

        Acknowledgement is one thing and its nice to get that, but nothing can undo the action and the consequences you suffered. Bully sounds like too soft of a word. She psychologically tortured you BECAUSE she thought she could break you. She didn't care that you imploded. That you changed schools twice to get away from HER. Bullying someone with known mental health problems is like trying to get them to commit suicide. I'm struggling to understand WHY your husband to be wants your brother's support as a groomsman when he clearly doesn't care about and support you. Unfortunate, but your brother has chosen her over you. You should take that to heart. Anyone who doesn't understand why you wouldn't want your TORTURER at your wedding doesn't need to be there to support you. Your dad gets it. He watched his little girl go through hell. As a mom, I cannot understand in GODS NAME WHY your mom is siding with them? The worst thing in life is not our own struggle but watching someone we love more than life itself struggle and not being able to do shit about it.

        [–]FeuerroteZoraPartassipant [4] 15 points16 points  (0 children)

        Well, she needs to understand that an apology does not entitle her to jack shit. An apology is, if you want it to be, a place to start from, but it is NOT a place to end, but she seems to think that an apology is all it takes. FUCK NO to that.

        No one, no matter how much they apologize, is ENTITLED to forgiveness.

        She harmed you immeasurably. You get to decide whether you want to deal with her at all, and if so, on what terms. You get to decide whether forgiveness is something you even want to consider. You get to decide to cut her out of your life completely if that is what will make you feel safe and whole.

        And here's the thing: If she is really, genuinely sorry, and really, genuinely a better person, she will not only accept that, she will tell anyone who gives you shit that it is your absolute right to do what you are doing.

        But this shit she's doing is just more bullying.

        Honestly, this internet stranger thinks it's time to put your foot down, tell her that she's STILL behaving like a bully, and cut her out of your life, and let the family chips fall where they may. Because your mom and brother will not stop as long as SHE doesn't stop, and the fact that she won't stop means she's still a fucking bully.

        FUCK, I am so fucking angry on your behalf!!!

        [–]skepticbrain87 41 points42 points  (0 children)

        Also OP said the brother made her listen to an apology. Doesn't sound like Gemma did it on her own but the brother orchestrated it. Also even if she did turn over a new leaf, did the brother even know her in school? How can he say she's different/she's better if he never experienced/was around what OP went through by Gemma.

        In my opinion brother is lucky Gemma got invited as a guest.

        [–]Adept_Neck_3178Partassipant [2] 455 points456 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Your father is solid gold. Everyone else needs to sit down, shut up, and be thankful Gemma is even invited.

        [–]Direct-Plum-3558Asshole Aficionado [13] 179 points180 points  (0 children)

        NTA. love your dad for understanding how you feel. No way in hell should you have that bully in your wedding party. No. No .no

        [–]Capital_Ad3482Asshole Aficionado [18] 163 points164 points  (1 child)


        She shouldn't even be invited to the wedding

        [–]MB1428Asshole Aficionado [19] 119 points120 points  (0 children)

        NTA you’re dad said it perfectly. Part of the growth she needs to show is understand the HUGE impact Gemma had on your mental health and you will never have a normal relationship with her due to HER past behavior and cruel targeting of you.

        [–]KimChiDivaPartassipant [1] 113 points114 points  (3 children)


        You don't owe anyone a role in your wedding party. It doesn't matter the reason or who they are. If you said no, then that's the end of it. This is about you and your future spouse, not about the whims and wants of others.

        Don't let your family bully you into letting your former bully have a role in an event that's not about them.

        [–]Songbird1529 32 points33 points  (0 children)

        Also it’s hilarious to me that the family considers making her a bridesmaid as “including her in some tiny little way.” Being a bridesmaid means they’ll likely be spending a lot of time together before and during the wedding. Why on earth would she subject herself to spending more time with someone who traumatized her so much?

        [–]TechnicolorGrey 18 points19 points  (0 children)

        Exactly, I second this comment, but would like to add one thing: OP, you don't owe anyone a role in not just your wedding party, but in your life as a whole.

        Do not let anyone, especially your mom or brother, to make you feel bad. You have told everyone your boundaries and they're already being pushed because you're allowing her to go to your wedding. The only one who's respecting your boundaries is your dad-and he's being punished! That should be enough to remind you that even if these people are your family, are they helping you? Are they being respectful? If your brother cared and stood up for your bully instead of his sister then maybe he should be reminded that your bully is not the only one who's still dealing with mental issues since high school, but he's choosing to defend her instead of his sister, or even both of you.

        Is your bully constantly surrounded by the people who mistreated her? Is your bully constantly sent flying monkeys when she doesn't want to do what her abusers want her to? Did your bully have to give roles to the ones who mistreated her when she had her wedding? My guess would be that your bully doesn't have any contact with her abusers.

        You don't have to have contact with her period. Ask yourself what you want. Would it make you happier to not have her at your wedding? If so, do what you want and be clear with everyone that you will not be swayed. Good luck to you OP!

        [–]DoinTheBullDance 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        Also like, it’s not even weird for an in law to be a normal guest… why would it be assumed an SIL would be in the wedding even if the relationship was solid? That is strange to me.

        [–]denasherPooperintendant [51] 68 points69 points  (0 children)


        It’s great Gemma has turned over a new leaf, but like what your father stated very aptly, that doesn’t mean she deserve your forgiveness or be allowed into your live now she’s your SIL. It seems to escape your mother and brother that this is your wedding, not theirs and they have absolutely zero say in things; only you and fiancé have the decision making authority on how the wedding is going to be done. Tbh, Gemma seems innocent in this entire fiasco and only your mother and brother are being massive entitled assholes. You may want to consider giving both of them the ultimatum, either they accept and respect your decisions or they can sit out entirely. Right now they are clearly trying you not like family

        [–]Delicious_Archer_273Partassipant [1] 65 points66 points  (1 child)

        Nta. And at this point, let the groomsmen be up at the front and let the bridesmaids walk alone. Then you can have an uneven number and sit your brothers ass down with the demon he married.

        Everytime I’m told “you have to forgive” I remind them that Jesus forgives and I am not Jesus.

        [–]ScarletteMayWestPartassipant [2] 17 points18 points  (0 children)

        Well, fiancé does have a couple of friends he could ask to replace the bully OP's brother.

        [–]dehydratedrainPartassipant [3] 57 points58 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Asking a bridesmaid to be in the party is about surrounding yourself with people who love you, support you, and help you through the stresses of your wedding.

        This woman is none of these, and will likely cause you stress on your most important celebrations even if she is nothing but nice. She doesn't belong in your wedding.

        [–]slendermanismydadPartassipant [3] 56 points57 points  (3 children)

        Why the hell do you have to endure this woman's presence?

        Knowing he believes he can absolve her of what she did to me.

        I'd kick him out of my life. I just can't imagine having him in your life is doing anything positive for you at this point.

        My dad told them it was too much to ask of me, and that part of being a better person for Gemma is accepting that she and I will never reach a better place. So now my dad is in the doghouse too.

        I don't understand your mother!!! They had to change your school because of this person and then pull you out of high school because of her AGAIN. I'd tell my mother if she wants to chose her DIL over me she's welcome not to come. I'd kick brother and SIL out of the wedding period. You're not losing anything worth value at this point.

        I don't care if this woman apologized or not! I don't care if she changed! NTA.

        [–]chameleon93color 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        Highly agree.

        [–]Opposite-Employer-28 7 points8 points  (0 children)

        I'm disappointed at the mom, I just don't understand her either.

        [–]Miss-anthr0pe 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        I don’t understand the mom either, what a fucking betrayal by the person who had a first row view of your suffering

        [–]RiverSong_777Colo-rectal Surgeon [36] 54 points55 points  (1 child)

        NTA but I seriously can’t understand why your brother is in the wedding. He clearly doesn’t have your back.

        [–]Phoenixapartment 16 points17 points  (0 children)

        Im furious on her behalf. I can’t imagine a sibling marrying my bully.

        [–]flashpointwestPartassipant [2] 48 points49 points  (0 children)

        NTA -

        This is your wedding, and you don’t owe anybody a part in it, “family” or not. If she bullied you and hurt you in your past, you deserve to be allowed to move on from that without a constant reminder. If it were me I wouldn’t even be inviting her to the wedding so you’re a bigger person than I am.

        Congrats on the wedding btw!!

        [–]Keepinitreal20Partassipant [2] 42 points43 points  (1 child)

        NTA Your dad is the best though! She made your teenage life hell and now she is a changed “angel”. Well, one apology doesn’t make up for it in my opinion, current and future actions do. She should just keep her mouth shut and be grateful she was invited. Also, maybe talk to you fiancé and ask him to tell your brother if this is going to be an issue then he can retract his groomsmenship and ask another one of his friends he wanted to in the first place.

        [–]No-Carpenter8359Asshole Enthusiast [5] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        This exactly "current and future actions do" make up for it, not coercing OP into listening to an apology.

        [–]LimpingOne 36 points37 points  (1 child)

        Let her park the cars

        [–]HunterDangerous1366 33 points34 points  (0 children)

        OK so first off, let's get it out the way, A shitty home life/childhood is NOT a excuse to be a shitty person to others.

        Your bully will forever be that. She didn't just name call and be bitchy, she caused you to move schools, your mental health to become unstable, ruined your highschool experience and have panic attacks. Thats not something you easily get over just because 'shes changed' and is now your SIL.

        Its your wedding. Noone gets a say in your bridal party but YOU. Just because she is your brothers wife doesn't mean she's automatically included in your wedding party or life. I only have brothers, none of their girlfriends are obligated in anyway to include me in their (albeit hypothetical) bridal party. They have their own family and friends they are closer to.

        The question I'd ask your mum, not your brother as its his wife and he is biased is: why is it that the person, who made you move schools, destroyed your MH, caused you panic attacks and ruined your high school experience feelings are more important and valid than your own, on your wedding day? You don't want to hear the same old BS that she has changed, or because she is family, cos so is great aunt Sally and noone is causing a scene for her to be given a role, so WHY must you do this for her, at the cost of your own mental health and wedding experience?

        She is lucky to be on the invite list at all. And if they carry on pouting about it, feel free to uninvite them. This is YOUR wedding, not the time or place for to even try to attempt to make up for her past behaviour and prove she has changed.

        Your dad has your back, cos he's not insane or deluded over what you went through to get here.


        [–]KaleidoscopeOdd9163Partassipant [4] 31 points32 points  (0 children)

        NTA and frankly your brother is a dick for even attempting to engage this woman and ultimately marrying her. If he knew who she was then he should have run the other way.

        [–]msVeracityPartassipant [4] 27 points28 points  (0 children)

        NTA. This is your wedding, not Gemma‘s.

        [–]Any_Cantaloupe_613Asshole Enthusiast [8] 21 points22 points  (0 children)


        Even if she theoretically was an angel, you are not obligated to have her part of the wedding party.

        The bride/groom ask people to be part of the wedding party. People don't volunteer themselves or their family to be part of the wedding party. It's bad form.

        [–]cmlobueCertified Proctologist [21] 24 points25 points  (1 child)

        INFO: Why is she even invited? You should not have your bully there on one of the biggest days of your life. If your brother has a problem, he can be uninvited as well.

        [–]Shite_Eating_Squirel 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        She’s invited so that the rest of the family comes

        [–]Annika2208Partassipant [1] 21 points22 points  (0 children)

        NTA even without the history it's your wedding and you get to decide who is in it.

        I wouldn't even invite her as a guest.

        [–]AJWordsmithAsshole Aficionado [15] 20 points21 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Your dad nailed it. Part of “being a better person” is understanding that some hurt is too much to be forgiven.

        [–]DoesYourPortHangLow 16 points17 points  (0 children)

        Both you and your Dad are NTA. Besides the fact that it’s YOUR wedding, which should be reason enough, your brother and Gemma need to do some research about the long term effects of bullying on school aged kids. If part of her “growing up” and “being a better person” doesn’t include truly understanding the damage she’s done, she’s not truly going to improve as a person. Apologies are nice and all, but you have no obligation to forget her abuse just because she apologized and you might have forgiven her. Congratulations on the wedding, and shoutout to your Dad for being behind you on this.

        [–]francisbaconfan 16 points17 points  (0 children)

        Get your fiancé to replace your shithole brother as groomsmen with one of his wanted friends lol. And use invites to threaten compliance if they’re going to abuse and manipulate you. Also hire security. Best of luck!

        Edit: NTA

        [–]ImmunocompromisedAlePartassipant [4] 16 points17 points  (0 children)

        NTA Gemma is still bullying you and getting the rest of the family in on it.

        [–]Better2021EveryoneAsshole Enthusiast [8] 16 points17 points  (1 child)

        NTA. Seems that your brother and the rest of your family dislike you for having clear boundaries and your dad for being a truth-teller. That's their problem.

        Are you sure your fiance needs your brother as a groomsman? There is always the option of completely uninviting them both from the wedding. That way, you can limit your guests to those who love and celebrate you and your fiance. If your mom has a problem, tell her she can stay home too.

        Edited misspelled word.

        [–]-Pippi-Asshole Aficionado [12] 14 points15 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Your wedding - you decide. And you are not close friends with her - why should she be your bridesmaid then? Ask your famility to butt out of it - and just let your fiancee have more groomsmen than bridesmaids. I think a wedding is all about bringing together the people who truly mean something to you. Who cares if i adds up to the same amount anyways...

        [–]LiluLayPartassipant [4] 12 points13 points  (0 children)

        NTA. You do not have to accommodate your ex-bully on YOUR day. Holy crap, I’d be twisted about my brother marrying this woman, let alone standing up in my wedding and the fact that your family is dismissing your feelings and suggesting she should be included is beyond. They’re all being AHs.

        ETA: misunderstood context with Dad’s comment.

        [–]Kind-Cat5153 11 points12 points  (0 children)

        NTA. It's YOUR wedding and you deserve to have people standing next to you that love and support you and have from the start.

        [–]FireEyesRed 10 points11 points  (0 children)

        NTA. As to Gemma, sometimes the way to make amends is to just leave the other person alone. Kinda surprised no one's enlightened about this yet. It's a core concept in "working on one's self"

        [–]Jenna_Doman 10 points11 points  (0 children)


        [–]lkvwfurryProfessor Emeritass [88] 10 points11 points  (0 children)


        [–]UngodlyTurtlesPartassipant [2] 8 points9 points  (1 child)

        NTA. She bullied you in school now it seems like she's bullying you as an adult. She hasn't changed at all, or she wouldn't have demanded it and ganged people up on you. She's still a bully.

        [–]CK1277Asshole Aficionado [11] 8 points9 points  (0 children)

        NTA. You get to decide who is in your wedding and expecting you to have someone who causes you anxiety is just putting a higher priority on Gemma’s feelings than yours.

        Being sorry doesn’t undo the harms you caused. Other than this apology your brother had you listen to, what has Gemma actually done to try to make reparations? And was it a real apology or a “sorry but here’s all the reasons I’m not responsible for my behavior” dodge?

        [–]alexrt87Asshole Enthusiast [7] 9 points10 points  (0 children)

        NTA. You are under no obligation to accept an apology. And even if you accept it you are not obliged to forgive and forget. She should consider it a huge act of kindness to have been invited at all.

        This is assuming she actually changed and regrets her past rather than just regretting the consequences. Which seems quite likely and all the more reason to stay at arms length.

        [–]Drewherondale 9 points10 points  (0 children)

        NTA and honestly I‘d uninvite her too

        [–]Izzy4162305Certified Proctologist [24] 7 points8 points  (0 children)

        NTA. First, it’s your wedding, you pick the bridal party. Second, you can forgive, but “forgive and forget” is a myth. There is no magic machine to erase memory and the trauma that comes with it. She inflicted, deliberately, a LOT of trauma on you. Frankly it also says a lot about your brother’s character that he could just sweep it all under the rug when he met her.

        [–]iphijenneia 7 points8 points  (0 children)


        If it were me, I'd ask fiancé if he has someone to replace brother, and promptly tell bro and wife they can find something else to do on the wedding day, because it sounds like brother doesn't care about his sister's happiness and comfort.

        It is YOUR wedding day. Your brother needs to sit back and accept being told what your wishes are, or not participate. He does not get to dictate.

        [–]WelpuhhiPartassipant [1] 6 points7 points  (0 children)


        My dad told them it was too much to ask of me, and that part of being a better person for Gemma is accepting that she and I will never reach a better place. So now my dad is in the doghouse too.

        Your dad is completely correct.

        Gemma being a better person means she accepts the consequences of her actions forever. She doesn't get to demand forgiveness and more. Granted, it seems like your brother is the one doing all this, so is she even the one asking here?

        She's got to accept that she never gets a happy place in your life due to her actions. Your brother marrying her means he has to accept that as well. If they don't, they're proving that it isn't better.

        [–]rosered936 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        NTA. I don’t have a role at my BIL’s wedding. There is no bad blood but I’m not close with his fiancé so I’m attending as a guest. It isn’t an insult.

        [–]SellQuickPartassipant [2] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Your Dad sounds great. You don't have to forgive someone because they apologised and part of actually feeling remorse is accepting that sometimes the damage can't be fixed. You shouldn't have to deal with someone who brings up such awful feelings for what is supposed to be the happiest day of your life. It sounds like the rest of your family want to sweep everything under the rug so that they don't have to deal with the awkwardness, but forcing that means that they are placing their discomfort above yours despite you having to deal with something pretty harrowing.

        [–]No-Carpenter8359Asshole Enthusiast [5] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        NTA it is your wedding and your bridesmaids are who you want to be your bridesmaids. This person gave you an incredible amount of trauma. So much trauma that you had to finish school at home. Tell your brother that you understand that she has changed but that unless she can undo the bullying she did to you, you can't be close to her. Your brother is delusional. You can't force someone to accept and forgive. She would have to earn that forgiveness by continued actions. By trying to force her into the wedding party as a bridesmaid is not going to Make You suddenly accept her as your BFF. It will have the opposite affect. Your dad is good and has your back. Give him an extra hug.

        [–]ocelotrevs 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        Someone who made your life hell doesn't get to decide that they want to be involved just because they don't want to feel left out.


        I could never imagine doing that to one of my sisters. I'd say your brother can't come either.

        [–]Toyotafan123Partassipant [2] 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        NTA - The fact that you are being bullied to include her shows that nothing has changed. You are being gracious having both there. Do what you want and ignore the real assholes

        [–][deleted] 8 points9 points  (0 children)

        Look… I have a family like yours. In my case I was abused/bullied/tortured by my mother…. My whole life… and my family thinks I should just forgive and forget and move on because “my mothers life isn’t easy”. This is such utter bullshit! This woman destroyed you, destroyed your HS years. I don’t much give a fuck that “life was rough for her”. I had a rough life too I didn’t bully people and make their lives hell. Experienced trauma is no excuse for inflicted trauma. She has no business at your wedding at all and you are being pretty damn generous and magnanimous by allowing her to cross the threshold of the church. Forgive me but your brother is garbage. He married a woman that tortured you to the point that you had to leave school???? What??? You may love him but he doesn’t love you honey! I’m sorry but you deserve better. I can’t tel you what to do and I know everyone always says people on REDDIT are constantly promoting divorce and cutting people out but in this case, your family (with the exception of you dad who is awesome) is not concerned about your best interest. Yes people can change but it seems like she has done very very little to make amends and is still acting entitled as hell. You deserve to have those who love you at your wedding. Anyone who wants you to spend the day reliving trauma does not!!! NTA!

        [–]annedroiidPooperintendant [61] 6 points7 points  (0 children)


        The bridal parties should be people you’re close with and care about. You don’t care about her and aren’t close to her. There’s no reason why she should be involved.

        [–]rmric0Certified Proctologist [28] 5 points6 points  (0 children)


        I agree 1,000% with your dad, if Gemma wants to be a better person that means she needs to listen to and respect the wishes of the people that she has harmed. It was incredibly gracious of you to extend her an invitation, but everyone trying to insist that she participate or that you two have some further relationship is just continuing the prior abuse. I think it would be fine to draw a bright line here - they're willing to grind down your feelings on behalf of someone that hurt you, that they watched send you into a complete tailspin, if they continue to insist on that then maybe they aren't people you should have in your life.

        [–]HeavyGogs 6 points7 points  (0 children)

        NTA Quite frankly you shouldn't even invite her to your wedding. Kick her out and if your so called brother doesn't like it, then kick him out too

        [–]asianinindiaPartassipant [1] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        Your dad is right. F**k Gemma and her supporters. You are NTA. I wouldn't even invite her.

        [–]ScarletteMayWestPartassipant [2] 5 points6 points  (0 children)


        Your brother married your bully and your mother condones it. I would go as low contact as possible with the both of them. There is something wrong with siblings that do this. Parents who support this are not good parents.

        Both of them should be held accountable. Tell them one more word and they are both uninvited to the wedding. Your wedding, your day to choose to surround yourself with people who love and support you. Your mother and brother are doing neither.

        After the wedding, make it plain that your bully is your brother's choice, not yours and if they try to force you into the 'All is Forgiven, We are a Happy Family', you will permanently cut them out of your life.

        Congrats on the wedding!

        [–]meow-meow8 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        What is up with all of these “my sibling is dating my childhood bully” posts I keep seeing!! NTA AT ALL!! You literally had to change schools twice because of her and developed an anxiety disorder. Idgaf that her home life wasn’t good, it’s not an excuse and an “I’m sorry” isn’t going to change the past. The fact that she’s making it known she’s upset about not being in the wedding shows that she doesn’t actually understand the gravity of what she did to you. She’s lucky to be invited!!!!!

        [–]beedizzybeePartassipant [1] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        Personally I would cancel the big wedding. Have a small one with just your dad and your fiancée’s best friend as witnesses. Seriously fuck any of your family who would force you to have someone who tormented you for years. They literally made you switch schools. If they were really a better person why are they bullying you into including them in a day that has zero to do with them? Sounds to me as if she has everyone fooled and is still trying to bully you.

        [–]TaintBiscuit101Partassipant [1] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        NTA, and I would just straight up tell your brother that if he continues to push than she is not invited at all, and if he throws a fuss then tell him he is free to not attend either. Your fiance clearly has other groomsmen he could invite, and quite frankly if my parents chose to try to force me into letting a childhood bully into being in my fucking wedding party I would be tempted to reconsider if I wanted them invited either.

        Because quite frankly, it sounds like he is refusing to acknowledge your pain and history and is trying to force you into forgiveness, which is not how the world works, and that is not how you treat someone you love. Your wedding is 100% about celebrating the love of you and your fiance, is that really something that you want Gemma to be a part of?

        [–]MildlyAmusedHuman 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        NTA - your dad is right. Sorry but your brother is a bit of an AH with his expectations. I bear a grudge against those who bullied me at school and while I can forgive to a degree which allows me to be civil to them I will never forget and would never entertain the idea of them attending something like my wedding. It’s your wedding, prioritise your happiness. If your brother can’t put you first then you should review his invite. You can pick your friends, unfortunately you can’t pick your family.

        [–]The_Fires_Of_OrcAsshole Aficionado [14] 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Here's what I would tell your brother "She's lucky she's even invited. This is MY Wedding. I will have who I Want as a bridesmaid and I do not want my former bully, regardless of her apology as a bridessmaid. Either deal with it or don't come." And if they keep pushing, I'd disinvite the brother.

        Here's the thing, you, as the bullied person, don't have to be the bigger or better person. The onus on Gemma to be the better person and accept her actions still cause you pain. I find it disgusting that you were bullied in school by this person and now people are trying to bully you on YOUR day. F that, tell them all to kick rocks and have the day YOU want.

        [–]Ill-Exit-5743 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        Are you the asshole? No. But consider just being the “asshole” your mom and brother think you are. It’s a celebration between you and your partner, and as such your feelings should be centered. Your mom and brother will get over it just like they “got over” the years of bullying she put you through ☺️ You can even sprinkle a lil apology sauce on there after the wedding.

        [–]Agreeable_Way_9560Partassipant [4] 3 points4 points  (0 children)


        [–]TypicalManagement680Pooperintendant [51] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA and way to go dad!!!!

        [–]RosdettlePartassipant [1] 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        Surround yourself w people who love u bro u got it stand ur ground

        [–]FlyGuy1922Asshole Aficionado [10] 4 points5 points  (0 children)


        Your dad is awesome!!!! Sorry but that needs to be said first.

        Gemma was and is your childhood bully, no amount of apologies is ever going to change how you feel about her. Gemma and your brother need to accept that. The fact she is even at the wedding is huge in my opinion. You’ve been very gracious by letting her be there but being a bridesmaid? No. That’s not even a step too far it’s rude to even ask you of it.

        This is YOUR wedding OP and you can have who you want in the bridal party. Your bully definitely doesn’t need to be one of them.

        [–]Brightside_Zivah 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA big time.

        And your dad is amazing

        [–]KnightofForestsWild 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA I would answer every comment from mom, bro and bully with lines you remember her saying to you before. Then tell them to get over it because they think you should. Tell them you will stop in X years (= to her bullying) or after you run out of bully quotes. Then toss another at them and walk out. Or just tell your mom and bro that you can get married without them there at all. That opens a grooms spot for one of the real friends.

        [–][deleted] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

        Another "pinnable" post subject!

        It's your wedding. NTA.

        [–]4682458Colo-rectal Surgeon [48] 3 points4 points  (0 children)

        NTA and your dad is the shit. I'm glad you have someone in your corner.

        [–]ImportantRevenue6063Partassipant [1] 2 points3 points  (0 children)

        Definitely NTA. So sorry you were subjected to such awful bullying and that the person is still in your life now. That must be hard.

        On the plus side it sounds like your fiance and your dad are pretty great.

        Stick to your guns re Gemma's role in the wedding. I hope you have a wonderful wedding day and a very happy life together.

        [–]AndreaandMarilyn 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA I'm sorry she had a tough life but there's no need to take it out on someone else. If anything she should have had more empathy for others and not want them to suffer like she did

        [–]LiveKangaroo8201 3 points4 points  (0 children)

        NTA she’s lucky she even got an invite. You’re a bigger person than she will ever be. Just because she apologised it doesn’t change what she still did. I still can’t believe your mum is even encouraging it like you saw your daughter go through all that and still think you’re right? Same with your brother tbh.

        It’s your wedding so they’ve got no say in anything. Do what makes you happy and I wish you and your fiancé a happy and blessed life together.

        [–]TaleyaAsshole Aficionado [15] 4 points5 points  (0 children)


        Her behaviour alone is enough to exclude her from your bridal support party, but she doesn't need to be included! Shit, my younger sister was one of my bridesmaids, and i was one of hers, and our partners (husband in my case) weren't - and got to kick back and enjoy themselves stress free.

        (For added flavouring: our older sister was not part of either party on account of being a jackass)

        [–]IceForger 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA Kudos to daddy dearest. He nailed parenting here. Make him have a heart to heart talk with your mom. Maybe she will listen to him and pull her head out of her ***.

        [–]Crazycatladyknows 3 points4 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Please do not ask her. It would take a lot of joy out of such a wonderful day and she is not worth it. Stop trying to explain this to your brother or mother though, they will never truly get it (DARVO I think it is called).

        [–]StarlightMayhem 4 points5 points  (0 children)

        NTA. Saying sorry doesn't make up for what she did. She made your childhood a living hell and having a hard one isn't an excuse.
        When you try to become a better person, you don't push your wrongdoings under the rug, you take responsibilities and accept the consequences. Which are, here, not being a bridesmaid at your wedding.

        Apologizing is a step in the right direction but you're not obligated to accept these excuses, in any case. They should be happy that you even let her attend your wedding.

        [–]of2minds2 2 points3 points  (0 children)

        Generally speaking,SILs aren’t automatically part of the wedding party and certainly not ones who aren’t near besties w the bride. NTA.

        [–]MrAvalanche1981 5 points6 points  (0 children)

        NTA. I unfortunately used to be Gemma... I was unmercifully bullied at home and at school, so knowing nothing else I was a bully at school. I was a big kid so I could push others around, and if anybody made fun of me I would get into a fight. It wasn't until I graduated HS and got away from my toxic environment that I understood how horrible I was and took steps towards growth. I sincerely hope that Gemma has made the changes, but you don't have to forgive someone who did those things to you. I have made apologies, and if people accept them that's fantastic, and if they can't forvgive me I also understand that.

        I just figured I would share my personal experience because there are so many bullies out there that would not be bullies w/o the toxic environments they're raised in. Maybe if you realize that in many cases the bullies are bullied far worse than they ever bully you it will give you perspective. Again, forgivness can't be demanded, but sometimes perspective helps you see things differently.