Weddings are a beautiful thing. The union of two happy people, for the rest of their lives. A cultural symbol of happiness and fulfillment. But sometimes, they're not that. At some weddings, things are just so off that it's impossible to imagine the couple making it. Read the stories below to hear from people about the weddings they went to at which it was CLEAR that the couples would be splitting up in no time. Content has been edited for clarity.
Not Our Job
“I was at a wedding as a videographer. The bride was really happy and everything but the groom seemed disinterested and bored. I filmed the ceremony and everything and we needed some shots of the guests mingling. My buddy says he hasn’t got any footage of the groom and asks if I’ve seen him. I say no but offer to walk around and look.
I eventually find the groom way down by the lake sitting on a bench and chatting with one of the bridesmaids. They don’t notice me, but I see them share a kiss. Mentioned it to my buddy who just shrugged and said we were there to film the wedding so it’s not our concern.”
Listening Is A Must
“Had a friend, like, 30 years ago, get married to his longtime girlfriend. I was never sure why they were together. She was urbane, sophisticated, read a lot, well-educated, etc. He was essentially a farm hand. Totally a nice guy, I’m not putting either one of them down, just…I didn’t get what they saw in each other, or why they’d marry.
Anyway, she kept telling him, several times in my presence, that if he shoved the cake in her face at the reception it would not go over well for him. He said he wouldn’t, promised several times he wouldn’t, etc.
His friends, however, from back home caught wind of this and just started berating him with the ‘gotta show her who is boss’ and making whip-cracking sounds around him.
I was at the reception. Sure enough, cake time comes and he shoves it in her face. She calls him a name, storms out of the reception and had it annulled.”
Swearing At The Bride
“I knew a couple that stayed together, but they HATED each other.
A friend from long ago called me up to be a groomsman. I was his friend back when we were in elementary school and hadn’t thought about him in years, but okay. I get there and my friend has changed dramatically and for the worse. Or maybe it was that he hadn’t changed. He was still that elementary school kid, only bitter. I figure I’ll enjoy the party, see some old pals, and get through it. This isn’t my trainwreck to stop.
The first time I saw my pal interact with his soon-to-be wife, I knew there were gonna be problems. They swore at each other, in front of everyone, at their arranged parties. Not like ‘you’re so freaking hot’ and stuff, but ‘you’re a freaking dumb witch’ kind of stuff.
I admit, I went to the wedding just to see what would happen.
They have 2 kids, they hate each other, and I have no idea why they stay with each other. Maybe they just both like being angry all the time?”
“My step sister and her husband had an absolutely awful relationship. They met each other our junior year of high school and she moved in with him half way through our senior year. I never liked him and did not hide that fact. I especially didn’t like him after he hit on me while they were dating. Didn’t hide that fact either, but my sister brushed me off.
Before he popped the question, she found out he’d been texting other girls. He promised he’d change.
The wedding was a train wreck, honestly. It was a small affair in our back yard, with her aunt officiating. The aunt started crying midway through the ceremony.
My step mother read a poem about them she wrote halfway through the ceremony (she always wants to be the center of attention), the groom’s wasted father (who had been barred from the wedding) came stumbling in at some point during the vows to search for drinks, and I saw the groom grab one of the bridesmaid’s butts. I didn’t point that out to my deliriously happy step-sister. I should have.
A year later, it turned out the groom had been sending explicit texts to my step mom.
My sister somehow forgave both of them. She has low self esteem.
They got caught again a year after that.
At that point, my dad had divorced my step mother, so I have been distant from this whole shebang. But my sister (who I do still talk to) finally divorced that scum bag.
Divorce for everyone! Let’s pull an Oprah.”
That Baby Looks Different
“The bride ugly cried the entire reception until her, the groom and her mom got into a yelling fight about it. They both made it clear the only reason they got married was because she was pregnant with their second child. The best man (of a different race, it’s relevant…) seemed very jumpy the entire time…fast forward to 6 months later, and the baby is clearly biracial. Less than a year after the wedding, bride and groom are divorced and she’s with the best man.
Also I feel like I should add that the groom was not unhappy enough to get a divorce. General consensus was that he was probably as guilty as she was, she just had the misfortune that her infidelity was a lot more obvious.”
A Cold Reasoning For Matrimony
“My sister-in-law’s first wedding. Never really liked the groom from the first time I met him. After a year or so, he proposed. They started planning their wedding that was to take place in a year. But then, on a whim, they get married in a civil ceremony with plans to still have the big ceremony later in the year. A few months after the civil ceremony, the groom goes in for heart surgery (bad valve he’s had since he was born). The big ceremony finally comes except every major aspect of it has been stripped away. Less than a year into the marriage, my sister-in-law brings me a credit card bill and asks me if I know what this $600 charge her husband has on it. A little internet research and I find that he’s tipping cam girls. They’re officially divorced about a year after that.
In retrospect, it became obvious what had happened. My sister-in-law was grifted for a new heart valve. He didn’t have the insurance at his job to cover the surgery, so he convinced her to marry him – earlier than expected – to get on her insurance, get the heart surgery, and then split.”
Father-In-Law Learns The Hard Way
“My Father-In-Law was getting remarried in his late 60’s. His wife died 20 years earlier to cancer, she was married 3 times prior. She lost two husbands in divorce, one to death. When we met the new girlfriend at the time, 2/3 of the children told him point blank that she wasn’t a good match for dad. Of course, he couldn’t (didn’t want to) see it. In fact, he took out a loan of $20,000 to repair her house. The thing is, he’s super stubborn, as in even when he is clearly in the wrong with evidence supported, he will still argue for 20 mins. And he’s a yeller (If I raise my voice, then I’m more right!). She is also stubborn and extremely religious. (He is also religious, but she took it to an 11). Any time they would get together while my wife and I were there, there was always a screaming match going on. They would find the littlest thing and start going off at each other. Well it never did get better.
The weeks leading up to the wedding just added more fuel as they had more things to shout about. The day of the wedding it felt really tense. Very smiling through their teeth. They hardly came back from their honeymoon when he approached my wife and I asking for advice. She served the divorce papers 2 months later, and he’s still doing payments on her roof!”
Offloading The Responsibility
“I was a bridesmaid in my brother’s wedding a few years back. The bride was okay throughout their relationship, but it felt very superficial, and she had done small things that signaled that she wasn’t a very kind person – like refusing to take an obviously suffering pet cat to the vet because, ‘It’s just a cat.’ She had the money, she just didn’t care at all. My brother did it for her in the end and wound up keeping the cat, but back to the story.
Leading up to the wedding, she got snippier, which we all brushed off as nerves, but she was being straight mean to her other sister in law, who was literally doing everything. SIL planned the bachelorette party exactly as my bro’s wife wanted – bro’s wife pouts because we were talking to each other as well as her and just stands up and leaves. Just friggin leaves. Other SIL is clearly very hurt, and we did our best to cheer her up, but she had to share an awkward hotel room with bro’s wife, so yay.
The rehearsal comes, and bro’s wife sends SIL out to do all the last minute errands that bro’s wife was supposed to do, but didn’t because she decided it wasn’t her job but didn’t tell anyone. So flowers, decorations, tons of stuff was missing and SIL was blitzing to retrieve it. We didn’t know until bro’s wife both bragged about what she did, and then complained about how SIL was late, useless, etc. I told her SIL was doing everything for her, she should be grateful, and then left while she was screeching.
Day of the wedding, she’s miserable, barely smiles, tells everyone off for everything, refuses to dance at the reception beyond the first dance because she wanted to pout over unknown reasons, tears open the gifts to see who was cheap and who was worthy, and then flounced out while leaving trash everywhere.
I don’t know how, but she and my brother remained married for about 5 years. She was just nasty the whole time. My brother is also a turd, but dang, she really went all out to out-turd him.
So she’s gone, and we’re all much happier without her. Still keep in touch with her brother and his wife (other SIL) though, because they’re great folks.”
They’re Doing Suspiciously Well
“My cousin and her husband had a pretty lavish wedding, one that seems like it should have been out of their price range. The husband’s grandparents are wealthy so the assumption was that they had paid for it. Well, a couple months go by and on Facebook they are posting about their new Lamborghini they bought. My cousin is a college student and her husband is in ‘sales.’ After that they bought a brand new Mercedes and a yacht. Well, turns out they had been running a Ponzi scheme and had defrauded people out of more than a million dollars. After they got caught, they turned on each other. Husband got 9 years in federal prison, and my cousin got 2 years. Oh and she gave birth to their child in prison. Both of them are disgusting human beings so I’d hoped for more time in jail.”
My Ex Is SO Ready For Marriage
“All of my interesting stories came from my time as an event server. Honestly, I felt like a lot of the weddings I saw at that event hall represented the culmination of two people’s most expensive mistake of their lives. Coworkers and I routinely placed bets on which ones would last the year. Our manager even told us about one time when they called a couple to clear up some minor details regarding the wedding a few months prior, only to find that couple was no longer getting married.
I have to say, though, that the best (worst?) maid of honor speech I have ever heard was the one where the MOH had formerly dated the groom.
And she said this. In the speech.
And she also mentioned that it hadn’t worked out between them for a laundry list of reasons, which unfortunately for my nightly entertainment she did not delve into.
AND then she threw in a few wink-wink nudge-nudge comments about the groom’s performance in bed.
The bride looked furious the whole time this speech was happening, and made a beeline for the bar as soon as it was socially acceptable (can ya blame her?)
The groom, meanwhile, is super awkwardly (suspiciously?) avoiding eye contact with the MOH/his former lover, and the last thing I witnessed between the happy couple was a tense exchange interspersed with both of them chugging their drinks.
Yeah, I wouldn’t place any bets on that one.”
I Stand Corrected
“My best mate and his girlfriend. They were from polar opposite sides of the world with the bride some 10,000 miles from home. They were both located in a country that was not where they were born, they did not speak the language and they both were under immense strain. The Bride had other issues too that exacerbated the situation.
The wedding was a small and simple affair – a registry office and a pub lunch, followed by a few drinks by just very close family and a couple of friends. I was taking photographs.
The bride’s mood was annoyed at best describe it – her new husband would put his arm around her and she would push him away. She stated to me she just did not want to be there. More than once she just stared at me in total despair. As a result he looked despondent at times and almost heartbroken. I didn’t think they would see the year out.
15 years later they are still very much together, very much a team and happy. They worked it all out, they learned from each other and they stuck to it. And for me, I couldn’t be happier for them.”
For The Kids
“A couple I knew got married because she was pregnant and they wanted to give the kid a good foundation, yadda yadda. However, before she was pregnant, she was a heavy drinker and a little too reckless with heavy narcotics. There was a night they hung out with me before she got pregnant that made it clear that they had a lot to work on (not going to get into specifics, but it was a bad night…). A few weeks later she was pregnant.
All the friends pretty unanimously thought it would end badly, but she sobered up while she was pregnant and it really looked like things were looking up. The marriage was very sweet, everyone enjoyed themselves, and it felt like a wedding should feel. We were all remaining cautiously hopeful about them. Sometimes having a kid really does bring out the good in a couple and gives them something greater than themselves to focus on, but this time it didn’t.
After their son was born, she got right back into drinking and soon she wasn’t even staying at the house anymore. He tried to force it to work a few times, but it was over. Before they had been married a year, she overdosed and died at some new guy’s house. She was only 21.
It sucked because we did get to see a brief period of what they could have been while she was pregnant, but then it all went south. Also, I think we all still feel a little guilty that we assumed the relationship would fail in the beginning.
On a more positive note, the baby is awesome, he has a lot of people that will be there to support him in his life, and my friend is a kick butt dad.”
He’d Do Anything For Love, But He Won’t Do That
“I once knew a couple whose relationship was obviously going to end, but I went to the wedding anyway. It wasn’t so much only the wedding (fun fact, I was best man at it), it was obvious the whole relationship was doomed when I learned this:
(Important to note, the groom was a hardcore stoner)
They were divorced 9 months later after she caught him smoking in his car in the driveway. So stupid, the whole thing. Why people get into these relationships I have no idea.”
He was horrible at hiding it when he was stoned.
He had no intention of doing so, but was convinced he could hide it from her (so starting out with a lie, and one that was bound to be found out)
She demanded before they got married that he quit smoking weed — she was strenuously anti-weed.
Bad Things Happen In The Woods
“We went on a four day camping trip.
Wedding was the last day.
One of the brides (it was a same gender marriage) gave her daughter only two weeks of notice to travel to the site.
There was no flower basket, so the daughter made one out of tree branches and moss.
The daughter basically supplied anything missing from the wedding, despite the short notice.
The other bride spent the whole day leading up to the wedding trying and failing to be patient with the first bride while she insisted she would be ready in time.
The first bride spent the whole day going off into the forest to smoke pot and just wandering around, as far as anyone could tell.
The first bride’s daughter spent the whole day doing and helping with preparations that should have been done at least the day before but ideally months before.
Her son spent the whole day reminiscing with her daughter about how she had always been flaky like this.
Ceremony delayed to wait for an important guest.
First bride was then late to the wedding. After the delay.
Site is a bit of a hike from the camp. Several members of the wedding party are disabled.
Second bride just barely held her composure through the ceremony. Spent the rest of the day in her tent.
Immediately after the ceremony, someone in the wedding party started telling the first bride about how someone was ‘talking smack’ about her to her kids. (Nope. Your kids were talking about you. Good to know your friends know what your kids look like.)
And most of the guests seemed to at least dislike the daughter, if not outright hate her. The only guests who didn’t were her brother, the second bride, and the two who didn’t even know who she was.”
“I hadn’t seen my brother in years and he was getting married. He sent me a week notice to appear at his wedding. His soon-to-be wife was a bit odd. Really shy, quiet, and had ultra-conservative parents who you could tell didn’t agree with the wedding because they thought she should’ve of married a Christian white man and not an Atheist asian man. They always had a snarky comment to me or my mom that we looked like savages. My brother is on the weird side as well. Super frugal, but also super wealthy. I gave it 2 years.
They were married for 5 years, and she filed for divorce and ran off with another woman. Cut contact with her family and everything to be a lesbian. Fast forward to this year, and my brother finally opens up about the marriage saying that they never fought about anything, no arguments, no disagreements about money, children, future, etc. He assumed she was a closeted lesbian and wanted to be free from her family.”
Nursing School Had To Wait
“My stepbrother married his now ex-wife way too young. Besides the fact the wedding was dry due to her not being 21 at the time (she was 20, he was 21), she was just not a nice person. She rejected us every time we tried to be kind to her. They would always leave family gatherings early. There was a ton of family drama the day of the wedding about seating (so dumb) and the pastor almost didn’t marry them because he thought they weren’t ready. I was in the wedding party and when I was standing up there, I just had that feeling ‘this isn’t going to work.’
After 6 years of her changing jobs, relocating for those jobs, and dragging my stepbrother along, they got divorced. He had to transfer nursing schools 3 times because of all the moving around. My stepbrother gave and gave and she just took and took.”
Always Be Cautious Of The Self-Serve Bar
“I was at a backyard wedding between two missionaries. I got to the house for the rehearsal dinner the night before to hear screaming and crying as the pastor tried to calm each of them down long enough to get them to agree to move forward with the wedding the next day. Day of the wedding, the wedding party (including me) were told we were the ones responsible for setting the tables, making centerpieces, and doing signage 4 hours before the wedding while bride is still distraught.
Oh, also, self service bar plus lots of kids meant lots of wasted kids whose parents weren’t watching as they drank Long Island ice teas straight out of the dispensers. This culminated in the hammered two year old flower girl faceplanting off a trampoline conveniently placed on a concrete driveway and having to be rushed to the emergency room covered in blood during the speeches.
They moved out of state just after their wedding and I’ve only spoken to them a couple times, she has become something of a hermit and he’s gotten very into his job so I’m guessing they don’t talk much either.”
Something In The Air Tonight
“I went to a friend’s wedding a few years ago and while they were a nice enough couple, the wedding was so excruciating that it seemed like a series of signs from the universe that their relationship was doomed.
It was over 90° and incredibly muggy. The ceremony was outside and it started raining in the middle. The air conditioning in the reception hall didn’t work – or at least, it wasn’t enough for the huge number of guests. The food came out over two hours late and by then everyone was starving and a lot were messily sloshed.
What’s more, the hetero couple was polyamorous, and the bride’s girlfriend was at the wedding. Turned out, the girlfriend wasn’t really okay with her partner having another partner, and the two of them getting married — especially when the bride wasn’t out to her family about either being bi or being polyamorous — was too much for her. She was staring daggers at everyone the whole time.
I think about a year later they split up and moved to different states.”