Gift to Bride & Groom to Be

by Jilted Co-Worker
(United States)

A co-worker of mine was slated to get married and in support of her wedding, our staff decided to throw her and her husband-to-be a party/shower. We bought food, cupcakes, decorations, party games and signed a beautiful card enclosed with a nice sum of money. I even gave extra to round out the figure, as I often do when the opportunity presents itself.

I am a giver by nature and like to give within my means whenever possible.

Fast forward to several weeks before the wedding. I was verbally told months before that I was invited and would receive an invitation. The invitation never came, so I inquired within 2 week window before her wedding to confirm. She gave me a verbal confirmation and apologized for not sending me a formal invite. I followed with asking her to please send me the details to include address etc. when time permitted.

Approximately 3 days before her wedding, I checked her registry and purchased a beautiful wall mirror to represent the reflection of their new lives together. I had the gift sent directly to their home.

As I was making my way to attend the wedding, I got a strange feeling that something wasn't right, so I checked social media.... the bride had noted that she had forgotten her veil and had to rush to purchase before the ceremony. The ceremony would have begun within the hour, so I was worried that she would be severely late. So instead of rushing to the venue, I followed up with a few of my co-workers to check on whether they had arrived to the venue or not. I
received notice that the venue was closed and there was no sign of a wedding for that day. They were confused and very taken-aback on the lack of communication and inconvenience.

Later it was found out through the grapevine that things were up in the air with them and several excuses were made as to why the wedding did not take place. Several months have gone by and my now ex co-worker has not made any effort to apologize, nor has she made an effort to return gifts... let alone thank everyone for even giving them in the first place.

I honestly could not stomach the level of disrespect I felt and made it a point to email her to see where her head and heart were post wedding fiasco. I simply asked if she received my wedding gift and if their were plans to wed in the near future. Response - yes I did, thank you. We are trying to move forward, please pray for us. Presently they are no longer together and NO sign of marriage. Even though I feel used, I tried to put myself in her shoes and swallow my pride. How devastating things must have been... how embarrassed she must have felt.

Was I wrong for emailing her the questions that circled in my head? I needed some form of closure. I must say the experience, put a bad taste in my mouth but it has not dampened my giving. Is there an appropriate way to inquire about touchy situations? Should I have even inquired? Mind you I never heard from her again, not even as an associate or friend.....

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When Life Intervenes...
by: Ms P Etiquette

Hello Jilted,

​Interesting story you tell here if not a little confusing. However, after re-reading your question it hit me that you have made their unfortunate break up about yourself and your generosity. Life happens. Sometimes life isn't very neat, manners fall aside while more pressing matters take precedence and feelings get hurt. You have every right to email anyone you wish. I imagine an email saying how sad you were that things were not working out for your friend might have been more appropriate. But that isn't the most important aspect of this question.

The attitude about gift giving involves rules of etiquette. One should give a gift from the heart and within one's budget, not expecting to be paid. A gift is defined by Websters Dictionary as a ​"​thing given willingly to someone without payment​." Expecting a thank you, an invitation or explanation is a form of anticipated payment. That is poor manners. I hope your friend's story has a happy ending, for both of you.​​

Ms. Practical Etiquette​

Thank you for responding....
by: Anonymous

Maybe I gave a bit too much of the wrong information. I did ask about her well-being and I reached out to the groom as well. I think I have a fair attitude when it comes to giving. In this case In felt that the manners of the bride and groom were lacking. I dont always expect a thank you from others when I give... yet there are certain parameters around etiquette that should guide a bride and groom on their journey to marriage. Your lack of balancing your comment out to include your concerns with me and that of the actions of the couple is quite concerning. I think it would have been a great opportunity to teach others about humility and graciousness rather than pointing out what you feel to have been poor manners on my part. I never made the bride feel obligated to thank me in anyway. That would have been very poor form.

All in all, thank you for your insights. No man is an island and no one has all of the answers, but I do appreciate your efforts. If nothing else, my posting taught me to continue to look within and use better discernment when dealing with people. Best regards -

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