The dilemma is that there is bad blood in the family. Or just bad apples, depending on your point of view. Some rivalries are mutual and some are one-sided, but they are all tragic and petty. It's not a question of clever seating arrangements, it's a question of whether allowing these troublemakers into our home would ignite World War 3.
Alex and I pondered our options. We would feel badly if one person or another were excluded from the event. As annoying as these people's irrational hatreds are, they are tolerable in isolation. We decided that since we are now a family unit, we can make family rules. And since we want to raise Aiven in an open, honest and inclusive environment, we decided that we could indeed invite everyone if we damn well please. Everyone is welcome to come and love Aiven and be a part of his life. If their hatred is greater than their love, then they can uninvite themselves. And if anyone dares start trouble in our home, they will be shown the way out.
Unfortunately, this deeply offended family members who felt that we should choose sides. They could not accept our rule. We feel that we did not exclude them, they excluded themselves. They have yet to meet Aiven.
Alex and I stand by our decision to invite and include everyone to be a part of Aiven's life. Did this decision come at too high of a price? Will Aiven ever meet his whole family? Was there a better way?