We've all heard nightmarish stories about wedding guests showing up in white, and even mothers-in-law trying to upstage the bride.

Well, romance author Amy Pennza recently shared a wedding horror story that combines the two.

Yes, Pennza's mother-in-law showed up to her wedding in a white dress looking straight from David's Bridal. It has to be seen to be believed, and luckily, Pennza posted receipts:



All of Twitter ground to a halt as people awaited the deets.



It amassed thousands of retweets as Pennza's adoring public speculated about how this tale could have ended.




After a bit more begging, Pennza finally returned to Twitter to bless us all with the full story — and it's kind of surprising. Here it is, slightly condensed:

So, a couple people have asked for the story behind The Dress. Sorry for the delay! I have four kids (yes, I married him) on summer break, so my permanent state of being is "frazzled." I called my daughter "mom" the other day.
I didn't know what my mother-in-law planned to wear. I didn't think to ask.

The morning of the wedding, all the women in the bridal party cram into a tiny room in the church. You know, body glitter and hairspray everywhere. Fifteen coats of mascara. Putting napkins under your pits so you don't sweat on your dress.

She walks in. I see it.don't remember much about the day. Most people say their wedding is a blur, and that's true for me, too.

But I know I said this: "You... You could be the bride..."

Later, my sister (matron of honor) said she didn't pull me aside and talk about it because she hoped I was too distracted to notice. My college roommate (bridesmaid) said the same thing.

But secretly, they both spent the reception looking at me, then each other, then MIL, then me, then the cop the venue made us hire—hoping I didn't go for his taser.

I'm happy to report the wedding unfolded without bloodshed, or anyone being shoved into the champagne fountain.


Then the story goes on and you realize Pennza might be the most understanding person alive:

Here's the thing: My mother-in-law is extremely frugal. And I don't mean she just enjoys a good bargain. To understand her, you have to know where she comes from.

She grew up in extreme poverty. As a child, she used to sneak into the kitchen and eat match heads. That's a pica craving, and kids do it when they're malnourished.

When you grow up with nothing, it stays with you. Forever, I think. No matter how much money you earn, there's always that little fear in the back of your mind that someone might take it all away.

But her upbringing didn't make her hard. Or cruel. Or selfish.

However, she's a bargain hunter to the bone. Her money saving strategies are legend—and often hilarious. At family gatherings, we amuse ourselves telling stories of crazy shit she's done to save money.
[...]
So when she spotted The Dress at an incredible bargain, she couldn't turn it down. If you ask her now, she says she feels terrible about it.

Although, she also told me, "I think I've still got it. We should raffle it off."

She's frugal. But she's also incredibly generous. When my twins were newborns, she drove across town every night, slept on the sofa, and did three feedings. For two babies.

Every night for months.She regularly shows up at my house with bags of new clothes for the kids. (Because she's a kick ass bargain hunter.)

When I got my first job, she hemmed all my work pants because I can't sew for shit. And because she was proud of me.

She never misses a band concert, sports event, talent show, science fair...you name it. She'd walk over hot coals for her grandchildren. She gives them everything. Because, you know, she grew up with nothing.

So, yeah, the wedding dress was a shock. But it gave me a pretty funny memory. No one who attended has ever forgotten it. And, you have to admit, weddings can be forgettable.

Sure, she wore a wedding dress to my wedding. But she has more than made up for it since. When I told her about this getting a lot of attention, and said I worried it might hurt her feelings, she waved it off. "Whatever makes me famous."


So Pennza's MIL bought the dress because it was a bargain, and Pennza accepted that. Very nice of her, as many of us might have wondered whether there were any, I don't know, non-bridal dresses on sale somewhere in the world. But sure, okay.


Lots of feelings were felt.


Pretty much everyone agreed Pennza is a champ for seeing things this way.


But also just FYI: if this happens to you, it's okay to be furious.


This article originally appeared on SomeeCards. You can read it here.