12 Real Stories of People Who Were Left at the Altar

4 months ago

Some people have faced the painful experience of being left alone at the altar, watching their dreams of a “happily ever after” crumble. Whether due to a change of heart, infidelity, or hidden secrets, they had to endure the humiliation of a failed wedding in front of family and friends. In heartbreaking stories online, they told their truth.

  • My friend’s groom-to-be left her at the altar. He took the tickets to Hawaii for their honeymoon and instead went with his brother. She spent a year dating around before he begged her to take him back, saying that he was wrong. He — a very well-off young lawyer — bought her a huge rock and paid for a lavish wedding, and she agreed.
    They were married soon after and now have a baby daughter. © Anitsisqua / Reddit
  • My entire fourth grade class was in attendance at our teacher’s wedding, where she was left at the altar.
    The whole situation was ugly. My teacher was the bride and was about 3/4 down the aisle when the groom decided he couldn’t do it. He walked off to the side and at first my teacher and her father didn’t notice and kept walking, smiling radiantly. There was about a minute of really solid confusion (Last minute cold feet? Bathroom emergency?) before everyone realized what was going on. My teacher was whisked out of the church and an announcement was made that there was not going to be a wedding.
    This happened the second or third week of June; she didn’t come back for the last week of school. © Unknown author / Reddit
  • I wasn’t sure I wanted to marry her, I was confused. We went on vacation, and I was initially planning on proposing to her. I had bought a ring and everything. After much thought I decided not to go through with the proposal but while I was out of the hotel room she found the ring. I didn’t have the heart to explain that I’d changed my mind.
    After that, I just kind of went through the motions. On our wedding day, I ended up hiding in the upper gallery of the church with my best man/roommate. We just kind of hid up there while everyone looked for us until eventually he had to pee, and we got discovered.
    She was devastated. © phongduck / Reddit
  • I left a man at the altar. I was in my dress and getting ready to go to the chapel, when I realized I couldn’t. I froze. I didn’t love him as much as I craved the safety and security that being married would bring.
    I was fairly recently divorced and very young and scared. He eventually found a lovely woman, and they are very happy together. I don’t think either of us would have had that with each other. © Fluffledoodle / Reddit
  • It actually happened to me. The guy I was supposed to marry, just didn’t show up at all. He called all of his friends and family on his side, and told them not to bother showing up because he wouldn’t be there. We waited around until about an hour after the wedding started, and finally I got a text message saying he wasn’t coming.
    So I got to look like a jerk by telling my family, “Oh, sorry, there won’t be a wedding today.” It was mortifying. And to top things off, my son was asking me why his daddy didn’t want to marry mommy. Very hard to explain that to a 2-year-old.
    And he never gave me a reason. It was really sad. Now that it’s like 6 years later, I’m glad that I dodged that bullet. I would have been miserable with him. I was so blind, being young and in love, that I didn’t see him for who he really was. © theonlyjadegreen / Reddit
  • I was a guest on the bride’s side. Everything was going well. She started walking down the aisle, but then stopped halfway. Her father and mother came over. She whispered to them, then they all turned around and walked away. The groom immediately followed. Music kept playing, then slowly drifted away. We all just sat there in dead silence.
    A couple of minutes later, the father of the bride came back down the aisle and apologized, but there was going to be no wedding today. We all just got up and slowly left. There were a couple of angry family members on the groom’s side, but once they talked to the father of the bride, they immediately just left. At the door, the mother of the bride shook my hand and thanked us for coming, and told us that they would explain everything later, but for now we should just head home.
    The story is that the groom the night before the ceremony confessed to the bride that he was gay. He loved her. He still wanted to marry her, provide and raise children. But he needed her to know. She couldn’t let him live like that, and it wasn’t fair to either of them. © RoboticEnterprise / Reddit
  • This was sometime in the 70s. My uncle in India was attending the wedding of some not-so-close friends (totally common to have 1,000 people at a wedding, with many people that barely know the couple in attendance). The bride was left at the altar and literally standing on the stage and waiting while everyone was watching.
    My uncle stepped up and said he’d marry her. He must have felt some sudden rush of Bollywood go through him. Anyway, she said yes and they are happily married to this day. © agentkatsumoto / Reddit
  • It happened to a woman I knew.
    When it came to the part of “If anyone here has any objection, speak now or forever hold your peace,” a woman in the back stands up and says, “the groom can’t get married as he is my husband.”
    Turns out the woman, who objected, and the groom were in fact married and tried to get divorced, but the divorce was never completed. So technically the groom was still married, and the wedding did not proceed. © linux1970 / Reddit
  • A guy I knew did this. He was a nice, laid back guy marrying a toxic person. I can’t get into the details because I didn’t know him too well, but apparently his friends had been telling him to break it off from the beginning. They had a final intervention for him the morning of the wedding, and they finally convinced him to just leave.
    He showed up at this festival I was at during what was supposed to be his wedding. I saw him and said, “Hey man, aren’t you getting married today?” and he had this kind of far away look and said, “Yeah, that’s not happening anymore.” © Unknown author / Reddit
  • It happened to one of my friend’s sisters. It was a few years back. It was an arranged Indian wedding, and the lady was initially very accepting and happy with the groom. They talked and fell in love with each other, leading to the marriage. She was really looking forward to the wedding because she was very much involved in her wedding planning and preparation.
    About one month before her wedding, the lady met her high school crush and started to bond with him. Then she fell in love with him. Well, she eloped with the guy just hours before the wedding. © yakshan / Reddit
  • I was dating this girl for 5 years. I popped the question and she happily agreed. Ten months in and the day had come, everything was fine until that question from the priest. I didn’t notice at first, but someone walked in as a guest to watch, and at that moment she literally changed her tone and demeanor, so when the priest asked the question she said a loud NO. And she walked away with that someone.
    As it turns out, she had been cheating on me with some guy for one year. Apparently that guy knew about our wedding and walked in to scoop her out. © miloca1983 / Reddit
  • My pastor once officiated a wedding. He had done all the premarital counselling for the couple, they seemed good to go and fine. At the altar he got to the part when he said, “Do you take this woman to be your wife” and the guy looked at her, back at him and said “No.”
    Pastor laughed a little and repeated the question, thinking he misunderstood, but the guy stopped him and said, “No, I don’t.” He took the groom aside to a back room, where the guy essentially said that he couldn’t do it, that the bride and her mother had manipulated the whole wedding, and he had been too chicken to stand up to her before, but that he couldn’t throw his life away.
    They brought in both families, and had a very real conversation, and then the pastor had to go back out and explain to the very uncomfortable congregation that there would be no wedding today, that the guests could help themselves to some refreshments, but that the rest of the evening events were cancelled. © iRedditWhileP***ping / Reddit

People being left at the altar isn’t the only thing that can ruin a wedding. There are a huge number of things that can go wrong, from unexpected guests appearing to lack of planning. Some guests of failed weddings revealed online what happened exactly, and we gathered their stories in this article.


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