Did a Woman Cancel Her Wedding Because Guests Refused to Pay $1,500 Each to Attend?

Purported screenshots of a Facebook rant by an unhappy ex-bride prompted a global wave of curiosity and schadenfreude in August 2018.

  • Published 28 August 2018

Claim

A woman named Susan posted an angry tirade blaming the cancellation of her wedding on her guests' refusal to contribute $1,500 each towards it.

Rating

Origin

Weddings can be a rich source of logistical nightmares, high drama, and emotional breakdowns. As such, they are also a popular subject of viral social media content and news articles.

In August 2018, one particular wedding story prompted outrage and bemusement across the globe, as well as widespread coverage by some of the world’s most-read websites.

A purported Facebook “rant” by a woman named “Susan,” explaining why she and her fiancé had broken off their engagement, ended their relationship, and cancelled their wedding, provoked breathless headlines and generally credulous reports, such as the following by the Daily Mail:

A disgruntled bride-to-be has revealed she was forced to cancel her extravagant ‘fairytale’ wedding after her guests refused to pay $CAD 1,500 each to attend. The Canadian bride, who is known only as ‘Susan’, was due to tie the knot with her childhood sweetheart in a lavish $CAD 60,000 ($46,020) wedding. But the couple decided to call off the ceremony just four days before exchanging their vows after they struggled to foot the bill.

Taking to Facebook to explain their decision, the furious mother-of-one blamed her family and friends for the breakdown of her relationship as she vented her frustration in a lengthy post.

On 24 August, the following tirade about the reasons behind the wedding cancellation was posted to Twitter by a user with the handle @grumpstorm:

An update followed, purportedly from a cousin of “Susan,” which offered some supposed background information and a number of very personal criticisms of “Susan”:

Another version of the “cousin’s” contribution was posted to the image-hosting web site Imgur.

On 25 August, Twitter user @0lspicykeychain also posted screenshots of the Facebook rant which went viral after they were shared by the model Chrissy Teigen.

The 24 August tweets by @grumpstorm are the earliest instances of the “Susan” rant that we have found online so far. That Twitter user said the screengrabs were taken from a Facebook post, which appears to have originated in a Facebook group called “That’s It, I’m Wedding Shaming.”

That group was either hidden or deleted from Facebook as of 28 August 2018, so we were unable to further investigate the origins of either the screenshots of “Susan’s” rant or the additional detail posted by a person identified as her cousin.

Amid extensive online news coverage of “Susan’s” wedding cancellation, thousands of Facebook users flocked to a separate Facebook group with a similar name to “That’s It, I’m Wedding Shaming,” but that is not the group in which this episode originated online.

It’s not clear what the origins are of the claim that “Susan” is Canadian, as reported by the Daily Mail and other sites. The Facebook post written by a person described as being related to “Susan” notes that “This woman has never been outside the US …” which would effectively rule out the possibility that “Susan” is Canadian — although we cannot verify the authenticity of either “Susan’s” rant or the musings of her “cousin,” which were posted after the tirade first went viral.

We were also unable to verify the existence of Susan using the name of her child (included in one of the screenshots), nor were we able to find any GoFundMe campaign relating to “Susan’s” wedding despite the references to one found in the tirade. This might mean that no such campaign ever existed, or it might mean that it has simply since been deleted.

For now, it remains unclear whether the rant was authentic, whether “Susan” is a real person (Canadian or not), and whether the person who joined in the mockery and schadenfreude on Facebook was, in fact, related to her. Nonetheless, other news organizations and widely-read web sites throughout the world, including Fox News, the London Independent, the Daily Mirror, and Elle reported the episode at face value without documenting that they had made efforts (successful or otherwise) to verify key elements of the story.

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