You’ll Have Real PTSD From His Fake One

, , , , , , | Related | October 30, 2018

Many years ago, for my cousin’s wedding, my family got together at a beach house. My cousin’s father had passed away the previous year, so a family friend was called in to walk her down the aisle. Immediately things got awkward when the family friend’s 30-year-old son walked in with his 16-year-old girlfriend. We all had many suspicions about the son, starting with drugs and ending with murder, but it was all speculation. He just came across as that kind of person.

The night before the wedding, the bride decided she wanted one more night out. Her controlling and mentally abusive mother caused a huge scene about this. She said that her father would be disgusted with her, and that if the bride left she would disown her. Then my aunt turned to me, being 17 and impressionable, and said I was to tell her if they left the house.

We were all consoling my obviously upset cousin at this point, when suddenly the family friend’s son appeared. He said he talked to my aunt, and convinced her to let the bride go out with a few people who were of age. This included my brother, his girlfriend, the bride, and the son. I felt very strange about this, as my aunt is not the kind of person to change her mind. I said I wanted to talk to her, but the son got very confrontational, saying it was taken care of and that I didn’t need to cause anymore drama. So, against my better judgment, I let them go.

I stayed awake, restless, while all the adults slept. Finally, an hour later, the bride and my brother’s girlfriend returned in a panic. Apparently they met up with the groom and groomsmen while out for some extra fun. The son got drunk and started having “PTSD flashbacks of the war,” which caused him to become belligerent. One of the groomsmen stepped in to calm him down, and the son punched him and pulled a knife. My brother restrained the son and told everyone to get out, telling his girlfriend to take the bride home.

Now I was panicking, and my brother wasn’t answering his phone. He was out at night with an armed and psychotic drunk. So, I did something I really didn’t want to. I woke up my parents and told them what happened. Immediately, they leapt into action, jumping in the car with my brother’s girlfriend to look for him. My cousin and I were told to get in a room and lock the door. We were scared, holding each other, when we heard stomping and screaming upstairs. My aunt had woken up.

For the next half hour, we had no idea what was going on. We were trapped in a room, listening to the world blowing up around us. People were running around, no one was answering their phones, and my aunt was screaming at us through the door. I’ve blocked out most of the words my aunt spat at us that night, but I know she was yelling about leaving the family.

Eventually, my parents came back and told us to open the door. My brother was fine. He had managed to disarm and talk down the son, and they were walking around outside when my parents got there. The son’s father got him in the car, and they went home and put him to bed on the air mattress my parents brought. The next morning he was so embarrassed that he wouldn’t show his face to the family. The air mattress was ruined by multiple tears and fluids.

The 16-year-old girlfriend did make an appearance at the wedding, but it was brief. The son was nowhere to be found. His parents apologized profusely for his actions, and told us he had never been in the military, let alone a war. Still, the wedding went off without a problem. My aunt stayed for it all and apologized years down the line for how she acted. My cousin is still happily married, and has a small child now. I’m just hoping I don’t have to attend another wedding for a long, long time.

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