Ex's Wedding & Teen

I have plans to take my 16 yr old nephew to Atlanta for the Walking Dead convention. The kid is obsessed and it is literally the only thing he is looking forward to. I just found out his father is getting re-married that exact weekend. I asked the ex about the date when I heard the month through the grapevine. His father said it was disappointing it overlapped but that he knows the kid would rather be at the convention so it's okay. My nephew doesn't know about the wedding yet (his parents divorced about 1 year ago) so I can't yet ask him. 

Should I just leave it as is knowing the kid will miss the wedding? 

Should I switch everything so that we go for 1 day of the convention (he's miss 2 of 3 days and it'll cost me around $750 to switch flights)? 

Or should I wait a few weeks and let teen decide? 

I know teen will say convention- not for any malicious intent but just because a he's been making plans to meet people & dying to go for a year.  But, as much as I hate the whole situation, I am not sure I want to put the burden of the decision on the kid.


Could his father tell the kid that it is OK with him if he misses the wedding? That would take the burden of the decision off the child and not make him feel that he might be disappointing his father.  It's more like the father giving the child permission to go to the convention, which might make it easier for everyone.

eta: the boy might surprise you and decide he wants to go to the wedding, but at least he could make the decision without feeling the weight of parental disappointment.


When I was a teenager, I wanted to make my own decisions, and not have them made for me.


conandrob240 said:

I have plans to take my 16 yr old nephew to Atlanta for the Walking Dead convention. The kid is obsessed and it is literally the only thing he is looking forward to. I just found out his father is getting re-married that exact weekend. I asked the ex about the date when I heard the month through the grapevine. His father said it was disappointing it overlapped but that he knows the kid would rather be at the convention so it's okay. My nephew doesn't know about the wedding yet (his parents divorced about 1 year ago) so I can't yet ask him. 

Should I just leave it as is knowing the kid will miss the wedding? 

Should I switch everything so that we go for 1 day of the convention (he's miss 2 of 3 days and it'll cost me around $750 to switch flights)? 

Or should I wait a few weeks and let teen decide? 

I know teen will say convention- not for any malicious intent but just because a he's been making plans to meet people & dying to go for a year.  But, as much as I hate the whole situation, I am not sure I want to put the burden of the decision on the kid.

Caveat: I don't have kids. 

I would think the decision would be made by your nephew's parents, but what the hell do I know.  smile 


yeah, I am sure his dad will say that. But I guess I'm torn on whether it's really ok. maybe I'm over thinking it. If father says it's ok and teen really doesn't care. It just feels wrong to me especially if little siblings are going and maybe will need big brother. I don't think little ones especially will see this as a happy event at this point. They are still really hurting and don't know future stepmom yet. On other hand if teen is hurting and doesn't want to go, this gives him an out. 


he's not a decision-making kind of kid and I know with absolute certainty he'll pick the convention but that doesn't mean it's the right thing to do.

The father says it's ok. His mother will not be involved in the decision.


and I truly think if his father says it's ok there will be no guilt or second-guessing with that parent. He's a decent man from that perspective.


conandrob240 said:

yeah, I am sure his dad will say that. But I guess I'm torn on whether it's really ok. maybe I'm over thinking it. If father says it's ok and teen really doesn't care. It just feels wrong to me especially if little siblings are going and maybe will need big brother. I don't think little ones especially will see this as a happy event at this point. They are still really hurting and don't know future stepmom yet. On other hand if teen is hurting and doesn't want to go, this gives him an out. 

Yup, sounds like a complicated situation fraught with emotion, unfortunately.  


sprout said:

When I was a teenager, I wanted to make my own decisions, and not have them made for me.

Well, don't all teenagers?  The flip side is that many teenagers aren't the best decision makers, right?


that's why it's not so simple to just say "ok" to his fathers graciousness. I want to set teen up for success in his new family but this is a kid with no interest, no passions and few friends and the planning of this convention has been his lifeline


Is there a pre-wedding celebration you, nephew and siblings and  dad and new wife can have? or post-wedding celebration? Just thinking outside of the box here.


I'm not saying this is right, but maybe consider this wedding isn't the time and place for him to man up. Does he have a relationship with the new wife?  Do his siblings really look up to him as big brother? I agree with one of the girls...would there be an opportunity for him to see them outside to the actual wedding? 


Ooh, ooh,  send them all to a stay over at wolf lodge (?) as a wedding gift. It's a wonderful place for parents and kids!


mbaldwin said:
sprout said:

When I was a teenager, I wanted to make my own decisions, and not have them made for me.

Well, don't all teenagers?  The flip side is that many teenagers aren't the best decision makers, right?

Teenagers are often terrible decisionmakers. But you want him to grow up empowered to navigate his family, and be able to make his own good decisions. 

Good decisionmaking takes practice, and practice tends to be filled with learning from mistakes. In this case, it seems like an important decision, but at the same time, it doesn't sound like it will make or break his relationship with his dad either way. 

If that's the case, then it's probably a good time to give him all the information (as early as possible), including the pros and cons of each decision - so it feels like real choice -- not a trick question about whether he can figure out what he's supposed to answer. Tell him he should talk to his Dad (or that his Dad will probably tell him in a couple of weeks). And give him a deadline he needs to make a decision by so reservations can be adjusted. Then support his decision. 

And if he later thinks he made a mistake, you can frame it as he may feel he made a mistake, but he probably learned something about his family and himself that he might not have learned if he decided the other way. And that will help him be a better decisionmaker as he gets older.


good points and I don't think there will be any horrible repercussions. Bad part is I can't talk to him yet. Not my place to tell him about the wedding


conandrob240 said:

good points and I don't think there will be any horrible repercussions. Bad part is I can't talk to him yet. Not my place to tell him about the wedding

Well, I guess that's my point. Back to being the parental responsibility to work through this with the kid. 

Suppose you have to be patient, which I'm not that good at even though I'm three decades into being an adult.  cheese 


If the wedding is going to be painful for him, this might be a great diversion.  Missing the convention for a wedding that he does not want to happen might be remembered for a lifetime. 


yeah, this is what I'm thinking. He's very closed off and would never admit it but I have a hard time imagining a scenario where any of them are going to be happy about this at this point. They are still deeply in pain ( the little one still cries daily for his father) and no ones really met this woman yet so I can imagine it'll be really, really hard for them. Perhaps if they get to know her over the next few months and fall head over heels with her, maybe it'll be ok for them. But they miss their dad, see him little and they worry deeply about their fragile mother so I am very very worried about this for them. Even in best case where they love stepmom, needy mother will be waiting to make them feel bad about it. 

While it could be a great diversion for older one, it feels like throwing little ones into the deep end alone.


This kid is obviously depressed. Take him to the convention. He's got enough on his plate. I don't think he gains anything by attending this wedding. Hopefully over time he will develop a relationship and with dad and maybe stepmom. You be there for him....that's what is important for him at this time.


Agreed...I'd also say that the wedding may have been planned without any concern for pre-existing plans of the groom's children, which I find telling, in the wake of a painful recent divorce.  

Someone was not terribly concerned about making sure that the children were available if they didn't ask about possible conflicts before selecting a date.

I'd go forward with the assumption that the convention is on, since the father seems fine with it, unless the son really wants to change these plans. 

gerryl said:

This kid is obviously depressed. Take him to the convention. He's got enough on his plate. I don't think he gains anything by attending this wedding. Hopefully over time he will develop a relationship and with dad and maybe stepmom. You be there for him....that's what is important for him at this time.

Howcould the dad NOT know about the convention? It seems that the son has been fixated on it for months .

He appears to WANT to put the boy in a difficult place.  Take him to the convention


geez, if dad can't tell the kid about the wedding ....it seems like it wouldn't be good for the kid to be there....I"d let the kid know and make it his choice.


Oh my goodness. That darling nephew of yours is so blessed to have you for his aunt. Hang on auntie! This will all work out. You have the grace to deal and hopefully we on MOL have given you some input that might be helpful. I send you positive vibes.  >smile<  >smile<   >smile


I have two experiences of step moms:

My ex's who only thought of herself and two kids, not my ex's and my 3 kids.  tongue laugh 

My son's new wife whom HIS son fell in love with first and always reminds his dad.  question  question   question 


I can't help myself. This is a pic of the best step mom ever with my son's two older children with their step mom and new siblings. She just raises the bar for what is truly important in life. 


I don't think his dad knew the date of the convention so I don't think it was malicious.  But if he paid one ounce of attention though, he would have seen the kids daily countdown on his various social media pages. And, absolutely, they didn't even consider the kids availability at all. Not even a mention. I get that telling your ex-wife is weird but he sees my parents weekly and has a decent relationship with us so he could have easily asked someone. I saw a post on FB about their wedding being "in October" so that's why I asked. 

He and my sister had an agreement that since the kids are so broken right now, no one would introduce a SO until July which marks a year since he moved out. But what this means is that this woman was committed to w/o her ever meeting the kids. That says volumes to me about what's important to him. 

This is a full-blown wedding as it's  her first so it'll be even weirder for them, I think.


My thought is the dad needs to have his children meet her. July is too long to wait. move it up. The difference of thirty days can mean a lifetime of a kept secret. This is bigger than a SO. Marriage definitely involves his children. I would let dad know.

Eta: unless dad and SO are willing to change wedding from October 2016 to possible October 2017 when a relationship with the kids can be sought and a better picture understood. Some men. Some women.   question  question  question 


All he cares about is starting a new family with this woman. Apparently there's some huge rush I guess. like they are 18.


when they made the agreement there was just random dating. He has only know this woman since November and they got engaged in early Feb. People are wacky, really. 


conandrob240 said:



He and my sister had an agreement that since the kids are so broken right now, no one would introduce a SO until July which marks a year since he moved out. But what this means is that this woman was committed to w/o her ever meeting the kids. That says volumes to me about what's important to him. 

This is a full-blown wedding as it's  her first so it'll be even weirder for them, I think.

Does she know he has children? One of them 16? Is she planning on sharing her life with daddy with his children? Is daddy abandoning his children? Will he just sneak off and visit with them privately? 

Any scenario needs to be understood before the children are involved. May God bless the children and keep them protected from an unwise decision on daddy's part.


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