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Dad Doesn't Want to Take COVID Precautions for a Family Wedding



"My father is very upset that a wedding he’s planning to attend is going to require vaccination or a negative COVID test. This wedding is coming up soon, and it’s for his granddaughter. The family wants no outbreaks from this gathering, so they set these parameters for attendance.

While my 90 year old father is very high risk, he is refusing COVID vaccination. He is also refusing to be tested. There is no logic that will convince him that vaccination might be in his best interest, and don’t even get me started about testing. He goes into a rant about his rights. We do agree that he has rights, but the right to die is the scariest one for us kids.

What do you recommend we do with this situation?"



It sounds like your father would like to attend this wedding, but his principles are getting in the way. It really puts him in tough situation. Up until now, he has likely been able to go about his life without having to make a hard choice during this pandemic. A granddaughter’s wedding is a dilemma, though.

So, what should he do? Personally, I think that he should either get the vaccination or be tested for COVID as those hosting the wedding have requested. He may not appreciate the choices, but it’s not his event to manage. Ask your father to look at it this way: no one wants to host an event that becomes known as a COVID spreader, especially if someone winds up in the hospital or dies. Imagine how the bride and groom would feel for the rest of their lives if their wedding was such an event.

I do realize that your father is taking a stand here, and he may feel that it is his right to go where he wants and do what he wants. That stand is really not true in our society. He cannot drive without a license. He must pay taxes. He must pay for things he wants at the store. I could go on, but I’m certain you see my point. There so are many rules in our society that we all abide by and appreciate, so to suggest that his free will is at stake and his rights are being impinged upon is not quite true.

His grandchild is merely trying to have a safe wedding. His choices are to attend and comply with their request, or stay home. If the parameters are too onerous for him, he should stay home. What he should not do is “raise a fuss” over this. By that I mean he should not complain incessantly, make a scene at the wedding, or confront his granddaughter about her wishes. 

I’m certain his presence will be missed if he chooses to stay home. It’s far better to do that, though, if making a scene at the wedding is his plan.

Weddings are joyous and memorable occasions for families. The family should celebrate with the couple and not do anything to make the day more stressful than it already is. 

I believe your father should simply comply with their request. They’re not requiring that he compromise his strong conviction not to be vaccinated. They are merely asking that he not come with the COVID virus. It all seems reasonable to me.

These are indeed tough times and we all have to make choices about vaccination and testing. I hope your father can make peace with the decision that he needs to make.


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