A bride-to-be has taken the extreme step of disinviting her own mother from her wedding after she made a joke deemed so insensitive it prompted one social media user to brand her “a monster.”
Dark humor is very much the dish of the day in the world of comedy with research even suggesting an appreciation of jokes that tread a fine line between funny and offensive is an indicator of intelligence.
A 2016 study published in Cognitive Processing concluded that people who like “humor that treats sinister subjects like death, disease, deformity, handicap or warfare with bitter amusement and presents such tragic, distressing or morbid topics in humorous terms” may have higher IQs, lower levels of aggression and fewer negative feelings that those easily offended.
However, dark humor remains a tricky type of comedy to master with obvious pitfalls. Get it right and you’ll reap the plaudits but get it wrong and the consequences are severe.
For one misguided mother-of-the-bride, those consequences now include being absent from her daughter’s upcoming wedding after making a terrible joke at the expense of her disabled fiance.
Writing in a post upvoted 13,000 times on Reddit, a 29-year-old woman explained why she had taken the painful decision to exclude her mom from her upcoming nuptials.
According to the woman, her husband-to-be is confined to a wheelchair, having lost the use of his legs in an accident that resulted in the death of his mom. But while his mother is sadly absent from their lives together, her mom has been causing problems since the day she met him.
The woman said from day one, her mom has been a “bit rude” to her fiance and has persisted in “making jokes about him.” Things came to a head a month ago during the anniversary of his mom’s death, an occasion where the bride’s mother decided to crack a gag about him being “responsible for the accident” that killed her.
Her ill-advised attempt at humor resulted in a major bust-up that was only resolved when the mom came along to her fiance’s birthday to “apologize.” Initially the birthday went off without a hitch. The mom apologized for any previous “misunderstandings” and they enjoyed a pleasant dinner together. But things soon took a wild turn when the mom gave him his birthday gift.
“He opened it and what we saw was a pair of (Nike) running shoes,” the bride-to-be wrote. “He looked at her and she started laughing then said something about being optimistic and hoping he’d use them one day.”
Cue another massive bust-up with the woman accusing her mother of “utter humiliation.” Though the mom insisted she didn’t mean for things “to play out like that” and felt her daughter was being “too sensitive”, as a result she has now been banned from their wedding.
Her dad has since been in touch and “begged” her to re-invite her mom. Other members of the family have also contacted her acknowledging that while the joke was “offensive” she should still be allowed to come to the wedding.
The bride has so far refused to back down though and is being urged to reject any and all pleas by those commenting on social media.
Dogpauwse branded her mom “a monster” with lollypolly4 writing: “I still can’t get past the fact that she’d joke about being responsible for his mother’s death.” Amberle73 commented: “Your mum is a bully, plain and simple. I don’t see any ‘jokes’ here, only cruelty towards someone she looks down on.”
WigglyFrog wrote: “Your mom is incredibly cruel. Don’t back down unless you want a lifetime of horrible remarks to your husband” while Shastakine responded: “Make fun of people with disabilities who are grieving? That’s not a joke, that’s just bullying.”
Blucougar, meanwhile, accused the mom of “gaslighting” adding: “stick to your guns. God knows what sort of grief she’d cause at the actual wedding.”
Newsweek has contacted the original poster for comment.