Weddings

Should Meghan Markle Just Ban Her Father From Her Wedding? (UPDATED)

He's a drama queen. Does Thomas Markle deserve to attend?

UPDATE (May 17, 2018, 10:52 A.M.): Meghan Markle released a statement (via Kensington Palace) officially confirming that her father will not be attending the May 19 event

The original story continues below...

Meghan Markle’s dad is acting worse than any bridezilla ever has leading up to his daughter’s big day.

After conspiring with paparazzi just days before the royal wedding to shoot “candid” photos of himself preparing for the big day, the 73-year-old retiree was caught in the act by The Daily Mail.

The royal family had repeatedly asked paparazzi to leave the family alone, but Thomas Markle just couldn’t help himself. He then pulled out of the wedding altogether, leaving Meghan with no one to walk her down the aisle and suggested his ex-wife and Meghan’s mom, Doria Ragland give their daughter away at St. George's Chapel, Windsor. 

Reports say a very forgiving Meghan asked her father to reconsider but Thomas claims to have suffered a heart attack and says he wants to save her further embarrassment. Yet, despite saying he would not even be flying to the U.K now, he may have already changed his mind.

While the glitzy guest list to the May 19 affair is said to include many famous faces, Meghan has understandably banned some of her family from attending. She did not extend invitations to her older half-siblings, Samantha Grant and Thomas Jr., who both share a father with Meghan, because they publicly bashed her last year in the press. Samantha is also writing a tell-all book about Meghan called The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister. That pretty much guarantees you’re off the list.

But she does have a soft spot for her father, who, after all the drama, should seriously be considered as a guest, says national etiquette expert Diane Gottsman.

"If there is a betrayal or serious offense, removing a family member from the guest list is definitely an option," Diane says, adding, “While it’s always best to keep family relationships positive, when someone commits a significant betrayal, strong measures may be understandable and need to be taken."

How exactly do you tell your father he’s not welcome at your nationally televised wedding?

“When you must uninvite a guest, you call them personally or have someone do it on your behalf,” Gottsman says. “They will likely know what they did and explanation will not be necessary.”

And never explain it to the other guests.

“You don’t say anything. The more you say the worse it gets. There is power in silence,” says Gottsman.

It’s likely Meghan will discuss whether to invite or not invite her dad with Harry, who will likely support whatever Meghan decides to do.

“You both should be on the same page before making any kind of major decision, especially when it involves a wedding,” says Gottsman.

But if your family member is disinvited, know that the relationship is likely to change forever — maybe that’s a good thing.

“Disinviting them is the least of it,” Gottsman says. “When the person you uninvited has committed an egregious offense, or one you find inappropriate, often they have taken the first step and hurt the relationship. It should be up to them to apologize.

“Bottom line is a betrayal hurts. Especially when it comes from a family member or close friend. Forgiveness is important but premeditation and purposeful intent should be considered. Was it an accident, and a mistake or something that was deliberately meant to profit off the other person? These are questions one should ask before doing something drastic like uninviting someone to a wedding. Especially if it’s a close family member.”

If Thomas Markle does end up invited — and attending — the royal wedding, Meghan can always banish him to a back table.

Since the bride and groom typically sit at the middle of a head table, or alone at a smaller head table, Meghan and Harry can always surround themselves with her mom, his family, the bridal party and the groomsmen. Fathers are usually seated at that table as well, but since Thomas doesn’t know how to behave, Meghan can be sure to assign him a seat far, far away.

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