Family Drama And A Wedding Cake.

Decorating By lunawhisper0013 Updated 21 Jun 2015 , 12:41pm by MsGF

lunawhisper0013 Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 9:23am
post #1 of 106

Warning, severe family drama ahead!!!

 

So, I have been a cake decorator for 13 years and have been doing cakes for friends and family on the side at little to no cost (which has now been rectified as I spend more time on a cake at home than one at work) I have done birthday cakes for my brother as surprise gifts (the surprise being the theme) and I did his first wedding cake.

 

Enter the drama:

 

I am in a relationship with someone my brother doesn't approve of. Long story, short, they used to be best friends and the little sister was "off limits". Well, we have a lot in common and enjoy each other's company so the friendship turned into a relationship, unfortunately while he was in a relationship with someone else.  I'm not going to try and justify my actions or the timing but that is not the point of this thread. My boyfriend's ex is also a friend of my brother and has several unflattering things to say about me. My brother hasn't spoken to me in 2 years.

 

Fast forward to last week:

 

My brother has met someone and wants to get married. We are "friends" on facebook so that is pretty much how I have been keeping up with his life, was looking at (not responding to) his occasional posts. The wedding is in May of next year and he contacted me wanting me to make the wedding cake. They are going for a 3 tier Victorian/Gothic theme in burgundy, black and white. I have not officially been invited to the wedding and the ex is one of the bridesmaids. (boyfriend and I are still together btw)   

 

The Conflict:

 

Do I make this cake? On the one hand, he is my brother and I love him. On the other, he hasn't acted like much of a brother in the last 2 years. Even if he doesn't approve of my choices, cutting me off and then asking for something like this isn't sitting well with me. I haven;t even met his fiance'. Is it right to ask me to make a cake as a "gift" if I'm not even invited? (regardless of if I would go or not, if I was making the cake or not, I don't know if he even wants me there)

I've been starting to feel like I don't even have a brother and some random stranger on the street came up to me and said, " Hey, I heard you do wedding cakes. You should make me one for free.  You can just decorate it and deliver it and go on home. Thanks." So, do I suck it up and be the bigger person for a vacant sibling who has probably over stretched their wedding budget or tell him that the cake is contingent on an invitation?

 

Other issues:

 

My brother isn't a "share your feelings" kind of guy which is why he has avoided me for 2 years rather than talk about how he feels. When someone approaches him about something he doesn't want to hear, he clams up and either doesn't speak or changes the subject. "Talking it out" isn't really an option with him and it's easier to cut me out than deal with the issue.

105 replies
winniemog Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 10:08am
post #2 of 106

ASpeaking as someone whose sister has not spoken to me since her wedding 8 years, I see two options:

1. Don't do the cake (this is where I'd sit on this)

2. Send an invoice for full cost.

Hopefully you hear from someone less bitter than me....and they might have more generous advice than me. But for me, it's 78 times bitten, twice shy.

Good luck, feel confident in your gut choice and stick to your guns. It's about how you feel deep down on this. What can you live with?

-K8memphis Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 11:16am
post #3 of 106

Aif he didn't ask you to do the cake that would be upsetting too -- my gut says you should do it if you can be satisfied at this point with just being the little sister cake decorator -- it's a tremendous opportunity to mend fences -- with someone you're saying doesn't have a lot of tools --

milestone events are great opportunities to come together and move forward -- so are crisis points so right here you (and I) can be glad that it's not a crisis --

i'm seeing the cake request as an olive branch so there's three things you might do -- as you say you can use it to barter for an invitation or throw it out the window or decide to quietly make some magic for your brother and hope that sooner or later it will bring about more reconciliation and I would hope you'd get on the short list for an invite--

screw all the conflicting conflicted agendas -- be happy your brother wants you in his life for his big day -- do the cake -- may brides will hardly have their save the dates out yet much less the invitations --

do you not see it as an olive branch from a reticent person with surely an invitation to follow?

winniemog Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 11:59am
post #4 of 106

AYou're an amazing person K8, there's so much good in your heart. I should have known it would be you to give the advice of forgiveness.

kkmcmahan Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 12:11pm
post #5 of 106

I totally agree with K8...do the cake and do it with love, not resentment.  Make it a jester to show your brother you are still there for him and happy for him regardless of anything that has gone on in the past.  I know it will hurt if you are not invited to the wedding but if you don't make the cake it may become one of your biggest regrets.

 

Maybe this is an opportunity to get together with him and his fiancé to discuss what they want for the cake.  Who knows what doors that will open.  Even if it doesn't appear to make a difference, it will.

 

Just be sure to follow through with your heart and know that even if nothing changes, you showed your brother love.  It is something we all need, even when we don't deserve it.  I wish the best for you and your brother and hope this is a new beginning for you all.

MsGF Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 12:35pm
post #6 of 106

I'm with K8 & kkmcmahan.   The cake would be a gift of love and from the heart.  I have 2 son's that don't talk, and as the parent it's awful.  When I and their father are gone they are all they have and I would like them to work stuff out and get along.  They don't have to be best buds, just be there for each other.

 

Maybe things will get worked out while you sit down and with them to work out the cake design.  And maybe his wife to be will be a driving force in having the two of you work it out.  You will never know if you don't do the cake.

 

Think of the cake as a gift.  When we give someone a gift it is up to them how they will receive it and handle it.  A gift should contain no strings.

 

I wish you love and peace, do what makes you comfortable and what you can live with.  The world is full of hate and anger and we should hold our loved ones close and work things out.

 

Much love;

 

MsGF 

-K8memphis Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 12:49pm
post #7 of 106

Quote:

Originally Posted by winniemog 

Speaking as someone whose sister has not spoken to me since her wedding 8 years, I see two options:

1. Don't do the cake (this is where I'd sit on this)

2. Send an invoice for full cost.

Hopefully you hear from someone less bitter than me....and they might have more generous advice than me. But for me, it's 78 times bitten, twice shy.

Good luck, feel confident in your gut choice and stick to your guns. It's about how you feel deep down on this. What can you live with?

 

 

no i get it because at some point you just draw up the drawbridge and resort to the tower to protect yourself and prevent further hurt -- just too raw too long -- this is the best course of action for toxic relationships --a viable last ditch unfortunate but necessary  option -- i getcha

dukeswalker Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 3:30pm
post #8 of 106

Oh boy - this is a "dig down deep and go with your gut" situation.  I'm very big on doing what you think is right, despite what the people around you are doing.  If you can make a decision and go to sleep that night feeling good about it - then it is the right thing to do.  

 

Me?  I would make the cake.  I may not be invited, I may not get the thanks I was hoping for, but I would feel good about giving someone I love something made with love. What he chooses to do after that is on him.

Apti Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 5:06pm
post #9 of 106

You will have to make a most difficult decision and you will have to make it within the next 5-7 days.  It's a tough one. 

 

If you respond "yes, I will do the cake as the wedding gift to you and your bride", [make absolutely sure you are very, very clear that the cake IS the wedding gift],  you must be able to say it KNOWING that you may not be invited to the wedding--and that you will do the cake anyway.  You must be able to say it knowing that this is, perhaps, a one-sided forgiveness--your side--that may result in more hurt feelings and resentment about providing a free cake with no reciprocation from his side.  You must be able to say it knowing that that the ex- is in the bridal party and that this could cause some significant problems for the bride and groom.  I also suggest that you include your boyfriend in this decision since he is part of this entire scenario as well. 

 

On the bright side, as a long-time, very experienced cake decorator, this is a gift which you can make exceptionally well, regardless of your feelings.

 

Since he has contacted you (by facebook?  phone?), it also gives you the opportunity to avoid all the questions about whether or not to give a wedding gift, or wedding card.  Cards are REALLY tough in situations like this. 

 

If he accepts the cake as a wedding gift, then everything else is up to him.

 

Unconditional forgiveness is one of the toughest things in the world. 

KatieKake Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 6:18pm
post #10 of 106

Since your brother seems to have a hard time when confronted with a situation he is uncomfortable with, who reverts to changing the subject, or silence, his asking you to make the cake may be his way of  trying to breach the hard feelings of the past, with out having to come  right out and say it.  I think if you make the cake, no matter what you will feel better, if you don't you will always wonder if had you made it, that you and your brother would be if not great "friends" at least    confortable with each other again.

aprildaisy Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 10:16pm
post #11 of 106

Like others have said, the best thing to do is go with what you'd feel comfortable doing. Personally, I wouldn't make the cake. The whole time I'd try to make the cake, I'd be thinking of things that would upset me...like why didn't I get an invitation, why didn't I meet the bride, why didn't he contact me before now, is he really being sincere.... 

MBalaska Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 11:05pm
post #12 of 106
Quote:
Originally Posted by winniemog 
"............But for me, it's 78 times bitten, twice shy.

Good luck, feel confident in your gut choice and stick to your guns. It's about how you feel deep down on this. What can you live with?..................."

 

Too True @winniemog.  What ever you choose you will live with it.

 

You are following his life through a safety net of anonymity on the internet.  That will be gone when you take the job.  Life's future is a mystery.  It's your gamble - win or lose - if you voluntarily choose to pick up those dice and play.

 

Do you think that he wants you to be part of the wedding and his life, or just get a free $1500 custom cake?

maybenot Posted 20 Sep 2014 , 11:43pm
post #13 of 106

I don't buy giving someone the freedom to ask for a free cake, but to not discuss their lousy treatment of me over time.  I think it was a ballsy request that should never have been made.  Being "family" doesn't give anyone the right to trivialize another member.

 

He'd either sit down and talk it out with me, or he'd be invited to purchase a cake at full retail price, full contractual obligation for everything.

 

In this case, I could make the cake if it were a business scenario--they'd just be another customer.  I'd have no expectation to be invited to the wedding, no emotional feelings about the cake, etc. I'd make it right because it was my job.

 

For me, a relationship is a 2 way street and when someone unilaterally shuts down one side of it, they at least have to discuss the terms for taking down the roadblock.  Getting something free from me is NOT the way to do that.

 

Suppose after the free, elaborate wedding cake, he [and his now wife] are still treating you as a persona non grata?  How's that going to sit?  Nothing will have been solved. They'll just have gotten a nice, free cake.

 

You get to have "terms", too.  Let him know what yours are.  Be the big meanie and put the talking point in his court.  If he doesn't like it, he can lump it.

mattyeatscakes Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 12:18am
post #14 of 106

A

Original message sent by MsGF

I'm with K8 & kkmcmahan.   The cake would be a gift of love and from the heart.  I have 2 son's that don't talk, and as the parent it's awful.  When I and their father are gone they are all they have and I would like them to work stuff out and get along.  They don't have to be best buds, just be there for each other.

Maybe things will get worked out while you sit down and with them to work out the cake design.  And maybe his wife to be will be a driving force in having the two of you work it out.  You will never know if you don't do the cake.

Think of the cake as a gift.  When we give someone a gift it is up to them how they will receive it and handle it.  A gift should contain no strings.

I wish you love and peace, do what makes you comfortable and what you can live with.  The world is full of hate and anger and we should hold our loved ones close and work things out.

Much love;

MsGF 

Omg! I am such a sap.. This post made me tear up.. Beautifully said! I hope your sons will be able to patch things up..

Norasmom Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 12:35am
post #15 of 106

Well, he certainly needs to come over for a "consult," during which you can hopefully make amends.  I do hope, however, he is not just looking for a free cake, that would not be nice.  (I would do the cake for free if $$ is not a problem, but only if he is truly wanting to be a part of your life.)

kakeladi Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 3:50am
post #16 of 106

...........screw all the conflicting conflicted agendas -- be happy your brother wants you in his life for his big day -- do the cake -- may brides will hardly have their save the dates out yet much less the invitations --.........do you not see it as an olive branch from a reticent person with surely an invitation to follow?.........

 

As so many of the others have said K8 is right on w/this.

It amazes me how many of us have children who do not speak to us or one another.  My daughters don't and one of them won't speak to me.  It is very heart breaking.

Since she won't speak to me I cannot find out what caused this breach.

johnson6ofus Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 6:05am
post #17 of 106
Quote:

Originally Posted by MBalaska 

 

 

Do you think that he wants you to be part of the wedding and his life, or just get a free $1500 custom cake?

THIS! Are you being treated as a free, hired help???? Or is it reconciliation. You must determine what the gesture/ contact is to really feel good about what you will do. 

 

I would look for some sincerity. No way I would do the cake and NOT be invited--- what a rude slap! Sorry, I am not that much of a doormat, even for family. 

Pastrybaglady Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 6:21am
post #18 of 106

Quote:

Originally Posted by kakeladi 
 

...........screw all the conflicting conflicted agendas -- be happy your brother wants you in his life for his big day -- do the cake -- may brides will hardly have their save the dates out yet much less the invitations --.........do you not see it as an olive branch from a reticent person with surely an invitation to follow?.........

 

As so many of the others have said K8 is right on w/this.

It amazes me how many of us have children who do not speak to us or one another.  My daughters don't and one of them won't speak to me.  It is very heart breaking.

Since she won't speak to me I cannot find out what caused this breach.

 

Wow, kakeladi my heart goes out to you!  To not have communication and not even know the reason why, I can't even imagine. 

 

I think men in general, especially when they know they are wrong, would rather just pretend it didn't happen and try to get back on the right track without slogging through all that emotional stuff.  Is he the kind of person who would just use you for free cake or is he trying to skip over a bad incident and pick up where you left off?  If he doesn't have a history of being a user he's trying to connect with you the only way he knows how.  If you want a relationship with him do the cake.  In the end you will know you did all that YOU could do. 

julia1812 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 6:47am
post #19 of 106

AI agree with K8! And the fact that you post this story here, tells me he's still somehow important enough to you. Maybe it's his way of saying "Hey, let's get over our differences and start fresh". Why would he approach you otherwise? Well, unless he's completely broke and is hoping for a freebie

maisie73 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 10:25am
post #20 of 106

AI must be a sap as well cos I've had tears in my eyes reading some of these posts! Families are complicated, none are "normal".

You know your brother, you know deep down if he just wants a free cake and doesn't give a hoot about you. You know your own history with him and how much you've put up with from him in the past (or not). I'd like to think this is an olive branch from a man who doesn't do touchy, feely, "closure" conversations. Again, you know your brother best. If you make the cake you'll have to get together with him and/or his bride to discuss it. It might be a new beginning for you. What does your boyfriend and extended family think? Without scrolling back up to re read your post the thing that sticks in my mind is you said "he's my brother and I love him". That would be enough for me. If you don't make the cake things will go on like this indefinitely and you'll always wonder "what if". If you make it you might just get your brother back, at the very least you'll know "what if".

"He's my brother and I love him."

MsGF Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 1:37pm
post #21 of 106

After reading all the posts, I still stand by my own thoughts.   I can't imagine your brother would ask for a cake and then not invite you to his wedding.   That is really cold.

 

I would say yes, then stipulate that he must come over for a chat first, to talk about life and the cake.  Only then will you know where he stands on your relationship.   We can't help who we fall in love with even when it hurts others, but people need to keep moving forward.  Holding grudges forever is allowing these people to continually hold power over your life.  And that's not fair to anyone.  In this world we are all striving for the same things, to be loved, to be happy to have joy.   We all deserve that.

 

You said you love him and I think this is his way of reaching out, reach out to, with boundaries and an open heart and mind.  This could be the start of something great.

 

If you are still uncomfortable after you chat, then make a decision about the gift of your time and effort in the form of a cake.

 

I understand your feelings of "How dare he"  & "The nerve to ask for a cake", but I think he is trying and you should try back, because you never know how the story ends if you don't try.

 

Lots to think about.

Claire138 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 1:38pm
post #22 of 106

I would make the cake, your brother may be looking at this as a way to reconciliation. I agree with Pastrybaglady - men in general do not know how to come back & would rather pretend nothing is wrong then get into a whole discussion on "she said, he said". Ultimately the decision is yours, I feel your (& everyone else on here who has expressed problems with loved ones) pain but think that you will feel worse if you did not accept this rather time consuming and expensive olive branch.

remnant3333 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 3:08pm
post #23 of 106

If you do his cake, please keep us updated as to whether or not you and your brother have reconciled. I hate to see any family split apart. Good luck!! Just do what is in your heart. 

lunawhisper0013 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 4:51pm
post #24 of 106

Well, I have just learned through a mutual acquaintance  (NOT my brother) that they actually went down to the courthouse and got legally married months ago. He never bothered to mention that and it makes me feel like, for one reason or another, he didn't think I needed to know. The cake is for the ceremony that the fiance'...well, wife now, I guess...wants so she can preen in a wedding dress. This is giving me a bit of a clue to his intent (or maybe I'm just bitter that he didn't feel it necessary to tell his sister he was already married) This is turning into a particularly bitter olive branch.

Claire138 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 4:59pm
post #25 of 106

:(

Cevamal Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 6:33pm
post #26 of 106

AWhat about asking them both to sit down with you to discuss the details of the cake? Whether they'll do that, and if so their demeanor during the conversation, will speak volumes as to whether they're trying to reconcile or not. From there you can decide whether to make the cake or not.

Kadesan Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 6:45pm
post #27 of 106

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cevamal 

What about asking them both to sit down with you to discuss the details of the cake? Whether they'll do that, and if so their demeanor during the conversation, will speak volumes as to whether they're trying to reconcile or not. From there you can decide whether to make the cake or not.


Wow. Excellent idea! :smile:

Apti Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 7:01pm
post #28 of 106

lunawhisper~~My heart goes out to you. 

-K8memphis Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 7:58pm
post #29 of 106

you all haven't spoken for two years -- there's probably a few other things y'all haven't shared --

 

my brother went to visit my dad and there was a party going on and my brother said to the lady who answered the door ,

 

my bro -- what's the occasion? 

she -- a wedding

my bro -- oh who got married?

she -- my sister and your father 

 

:-D we were not any of us even estranged -- we all visited him regularly -- we weren't invited we weren't informed -- my brother crashed the reception inadvertently --  i missed it altogether -- my sister knew cause they flew out to her place to get married -- actually pop never even told me --  my brother gave me an earful though y'think -- we never get tired of this outlandish story --  and we got more too :lol:

 

you can pick your nose but you can't pick your family -- whadayah gonna do

lunawhisper0013 Posted 21 Sep 2014 , 8:15pm
post #30 of 106

AI appreciate what you are saying but I think that little detail might be of some relevance if I am being asked to make his "wedding cake". Why NOT tell me?

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