I had a difficult relationship with my in-laws from the get-go, but the biggest thing that sticks with me is my MIL’s behavior during our Catholic (my religion) ceremony. My husband and I are from different religious backgrounds, so we planned a lovely interfaith ceremony, incorporating both of our religions. MIL refused to come to the wedding unless we had the religious ceremony she wanted. To appease her, we agreed to two ceremonies. One, because she insisted on a ceremony in their religion. The second, because if I was going to give MIL a ceremony, I was sure as heck going to give my mom one. While I regret my reasons for having two ceremonies, I am thrilled that we did them both. It really was meaningful to have ceremonies for both of our religious backgrounds.
Anyway, MIL arrived about 15 minutes before the Catholic ceremony, even though we asked family to arrive an hour early for photos. She didn’t take off her jacket, and she was carrying two plastic grocery bags full of snacks. She was walked down the aisle at the start of the ceremony carrying bags of potato chips, wearing her winter jacket.
I was too busy getting married to notice the rest of this, but here is what MANY guests recounted to me about her behavior during the ceremony: She sat down, and promptly opened bags of cookies and chips, and started feeding herself, her husband, and her grandchildren.
Apparently she was chatting away with the grandkids during the ceremony, not really bothering to check her volume. I’m not really sure how I didn’t notice it, because apparently it was loud, but I honestly did not notice during the ceremony.
During the first hymn, she answered a phone call, and proceeded to chat loudly on the phone during the entire hymn. People around her noticed, but not the whole church until the hymn ended and everybody sat down. At that point, everybody noticed her chatting away on the phone and started staring at her. The priest stopped the ceremony and looked right at her until she hung up.
A few minutes later, while the priest was talking, the phone rang again. Loudly. Everybody heard. She picked up the phone, but only got a few words out before she noticed that the priest had stopped and was glaring at her, along with almost everybody else in the church. She got the hint at that point, and, as far as I know, took no more phone calls during the wedding ceremony. 1111-13