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Is this mom wrong for refusing to let her daughter wear her wedding dress?

Mother zipping daughter up in wedding dress
SDI Productions/Getty

In some families, wedding dresses are heirlooms that get passed from generation to generation, worn by each new bride who gets to celebrate the history (and love) woven into the threads. But in other families, a wedding dress is a treasured relic from one special day, never to be worn again. There’s no right or wrong way to view your wedding dress. But one mom took to Reddit’s “AITA” forum to ask if she was in the wrong when she and her daughter didn’t see eye-to-eye on this.

“My(f45) daughter (f20) is getting married in a few months. She came to ask me about borrowing my wedding dress and I said absolutely no since it is my dress and I love it very much,” she wrote. “What makes me probably the [a**hole] is that it is something many women have done and apparently it is a beautiful tradition and mothers are often happy to do it. It is even an honor to the woman. But for me, I just can’t. I love this dress. I was the one who designed it and my mother, who was an excellent seamstress, made it for me, looking at my wardrobe, this is the last piece I have that she made.”

She continued, “My daughter wouldn’t just borrow it either. She is much bigger than me and she just wants to use the fabric and alter it, irreversibly because she’s a size 14 and the dress is a 4.”

To make matters worse, her daughter didn’t take this well.

“Now she is angry telling everyone that i am a cold-hearted hag who hates her. My sister thinks a dress isn’t worth making a bride sad. I don’t know. I love my daughter to the moon and back but I don’t understand why she shouldn’t hear a no just because she’s getting married,” the mom wrote. “Even if she was the right size and wouldn’t alter the dress, isn’t it odd not to respect other people’s property no matter if that is your mother. Since when did mothers stop being their own individuals and only became caterers for their children?”

Unsurprisingly, this mom was voted “not the a**hole,” because it’s her wedding dress, and she should get to decide what she does with it, her daughter’s entitlement notwithstanding!

“Your daughter sounds very young and unkind if she’s calling you names,” the top-voted comment reads. “She would remake your dress in a permanent way to fit her. It holds precious memories for you the way it is. You should preserve it and she is in the wrong to complain. If she were able to wear it without altering it, maybe but it’s still your call, entirely. She sounds like she might benefit from waiting to marry until she is more mature.”

Another highly voted comment says, “The dress is your property to do with as you please. But it’s also pretty much impossible to make a size 4 dress into a size 14 due to the difference in material requirements.”

The mom responded to this comment, adding some context: “I think it is mostly some embroidery that I have that they are interested in using. She had contacted a girl on Instagram who does these flippings.”

Another commenter responded back, writing, “Oh hell no, that’s not borrowing the dress that’s gutting it and using it for parts. Nta, especially with the sentimental value from your mum.”

What do you think about this mother-daughter dispute?