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Bride Asks If She's Wrong For Forcing Her Mother-In-Law To Buy A New Dress After She Basically Bought A Wedding Dress

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There are certain protocol we're expected to follow at the standard American wedding.

Be on time, don't empty the open bar and absolutely do not wear a solid white dress.


But for one mother-in-law, apparently this last rule wasn't clear enough.

Though it may sound like something taken directly from a rom-com, a bride-to-be confided that her mother-in-law had, in fact, bought the closest thing possible to a bridal wedding gown to attend her big day.

The bride, Redditor "AITAthedress," turned to the "Am I the A**hole?" (AITA) subReddit and asked:

"[Am I the A**hole] for making my [mother-in-law] buy a different dress for my wedding?"

She explained that the whole family was really excited about her wedding at the beginning, planning all the way down to the color scheme.

"When my husband and I were getting married, both sides of the family were really excited. During the planning, one thing you do is coordinate what colors/outfits people in the wedding party will wear."
"I was talking to my MIL about our plans and told her our color schemes. She was excited to buy a dress and while I didn't really care if they matched the bridal party, she said she wanted to complement the color scheme."
"My bridesmaids were wearing Navy Blue and the groomsmen were wearing Grey suits. My MIL said she was going to let my mom pick her dress first and then go off of that."

But it turned out the bride and her mother-in-law weren't quite on the same page about choosing a dress.

"A few weeks later, out of the blue I got a text from her saying she picked her dress. I was surprised since she said she'd let my mom go first, I didn't even know she was going shopping. But then she sent a picture of her dress."

Her mother-in-law had chosen a real show-stopper.

"It was a freaking wedding dress!! It was an ivory color, lots of beading, and it even had a small train. She kept saying it was "cream champagne" colored, but it was basically a wedding dress. My own dress was ivory and they looked like the same color. Hers honestly had even more detail than mine."

The bride wasn't sure how to respond.

"I basically didn't respond to her text at first. I was so annoyed and I told my husband (then fiancé) to deal with it. I told her she needed to return it and she wouldn't be wearing it to the wedding. She needed to get something else."

It turned out to not be as simple as returning the dress, either.

"She wasn't able to return the dress because most dress places have a no-returns policy, so she had to eat the cost of it. She ended up buying another dress but she wasn't happy about it and was angry she had to spend double the money."

Since her mother-in-law got a second dress, friends and family have had their own opinions about it.

"Anyone I've told this story to has had one of two reactions: either she was totally not cool for doing that, or I was being a total bridezilla by making her buy a second dress."

Though she had already received those polarized opinions from her friends, the bride turned to Reddit for an objective perspective.

The anonymous onlookers voted on the Original Poster's (OP's) situation, based on the following scale:

NTA: "Not the A**hole"

YTA: "You're the A**hole"

ESH: "Everyone Sucks Here"

NAH: "No A**holes Here"

Some Redditors pointed out that wearing white, and any form of a bridal gown, should be an obvious enough offense.

Her mother-in-law should have just known to not choose that dress.

"NTA. She knew the colors were navy blue and grey. She went ahead and picked out a wedding dress. There is no reason why she needed a wedding dress other than she wanted to ruin your day and draw attention to herself."
"She wouldn't have had to spend double the money and buy a second dress if she hadn't bought a wedding dress instead of a normal dress."
"Also, congratulations on your wedding." - CrypticBogBadger
"NTA. Funny side note, my dress was blush/pink. My SIL also wore a dress that color. Hers was short and she was really pregnant though."
"I wasn't personally mad because she looked great and it was pretty obvious I was the bride, and how was she to know a light pink dress would match mine??"
"Your MIL should know better though. Ivory is a totally different deal, and as someone else pointed out, really only wedding shops don't refund on dresses." - RunnerofUltras

Others questioned her friends' and family members' use of the word "bridezilla."

"She bought her own wedding dress, for YOUR wedding day. NTA and the people calling you a 'total bridezilla' clearly don't actually know what a bridezilla looks or acts like, because a bridezilla would confronted her personally instead of letting the MIL's son deal with it first."
"She deserved having to buy a second dress because she clearly knew what she was doing." - helpfulDeathgod
"Who on this green Earth is telling you that you were a bridezilla for telling your MIL to not wear a wedding dress to your own GD wedding?"
"NTA. She was totally out of line, and I'm sure she knew it at her age. You don't wear white or shades of off-white to a wedding. It's the tackiest thing you can do." - QuarkWrites

One Redditor thought it would have been fun to let the mother-in-law show up in the dress and let the other guests deal with her.

"NTA. You should have let her wear the dress and watched everyone judge her, and let her look the fool."
"In all serious though, who wears anything even resembling a wedding dress to anyone elses wedding, let alone their sons" - hattie1399

Another Redditor pointed out what a red flag this situation was and how important it was for the newlyweds to set firm boundaries now.

"NTA. She tried it, it didn't work. I did not want my MIL at my wedding because she tried to sabotage it by having her entire side of the family boycott it, three times. Her consequence was having a table far in the back corner, in the dark, and she can't see any of the wedding pics because she's blocked on all my SM."
"My husband knows, if she had the nerve to come dressed in any version of a white dress, she would've been thrown out on her a**. No one thought I was wrong or tried to tell me otherwise. She had done enough."
"You should have a talk with her and your husband and set the boundaries now. Congrats on the wedding. Best advice I can give is set boundaries, now. You'll save yourself problems later." - jaywild

It's a good thing the bride knew about the dress before her mother-in-law could show up for the big day in an even flashier gown.

That being said, restating some boundaries may be in order, if not wearing white or ivory causes this much confusion.

*If you enjoyed this article, you can read more like it by clicking on the AITA link below.*

The book Emily Post's Wedding Etiquette is available here.