Question:

My daughter is getting married next summer. Her father had an affair and then left me when she was 3. He is still married to the woman he had the affair with. I also remarried when my daughter was 5. My husband and daughter get along great. She also has had a continuous relationship with her father, enthusiastically encouraged by me.

My husband has been very successful, and we are well-off financially. My ex has always paid the required child support, but no more, and stopped paying the day she turned 18. He does give her a small allowance while she is in college. He isn't as well-off; when he was married to me, he always spent just a little more than his income.

He is way better than deadbeat dads, but he also doesn't qualify for Dad of the Year.

I don't have issues with his attending the wedding. However, I think he should either help financially with it or let my husband walk her down the aisle and do the first dance. I just don't think I could take him acting like her father while my husband pays all the bills.

This wedding will be just as my daughter wishes. I couldn't talk her into something small, and we will probably spend about $20,000. I'm not expecting my ex to pay half, just more than a token - $3,000 or so.

I'm torn between forgetting about the whole thing for my daughter's peace of mind and letting him know how I feel. What do you think?

Answer: If you know you've done right by your ex, by your daughter and by yourself - apparently, you've flourished in your second marriage - then who gives a marzipan dove whether your lawnful of wedding guests know it? You might want to be careful about whom you accuse of being "all about" appearances. Your daughter's escorts are your daughter's decision, regardless.

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