Bride abandoned by groom on wedding day continues without him

An abandoned bride decided to continue her marriage without her groom when he failed to show up.

Kayley Stead, 27, found out she wasn’t going to marry her partner of nearly four years that morning. Despite the heartache, Kayley decided to go ahead with the big day, surrounded by loved ones around her, on September 15

Kayley went ahead with her wedding entrance, meal, speeches, dances and even posed for professional photos without her fiancé. She entered the party singing Lizzo’s “Good as Hell” along with her wedding party.

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Brave Kayley took down the top of her wedding cake and enjoyed her first dance with the groomsmen, her brothers and her father Brian, 71. Now living on her own, with her honeymoon cancelled, Kayley is thrilled to still have the party – so money and effort hasn’t been wasted.

Her friends rallied around her, barely leaving her and creating a GoFundMe page to try and recoup some costs. Insurance agent Kayley said: “I saw the groom around 4pm the day before the wedding and haven’t heard from him since.

“We tried to contact him, but I got no response from him, no reason. I got no explanation – not that I want one now, because it’s too far down the line.

“It was an absolute shock, I had no indication he was going to do this, but seeing my daughters so upset made me want to change the situation.

“I didn’t want to remember the day as utter sadness. All day we said it felt like an episode of Hollyoaks or EastEnders. It didn’t feel like a real situation.

“There were so many special moments, like entering my wedding, walking the sparklers, the first dance and punching the wedding cake – so there was still happiness in the day.

“I had spent all that money, I was looking forward to eating, dancing with my dad, spending time with my family, so why not?”

Kayley Stead on ‘her wedding day’

Kayley, who lives in Portmead, Swansea, and her ex started dating in December 2018 and got engaged when he proposed in August 2020. The night before the wedding, Kayley stayed at an AirBnB to celebrate with her bridesmaids groomsmen while the groom and his groomsmen stayed in a trailer near the site.

Kayley said: “The groom and I had already agreed not to talk the day before the wedding anyway, so I had no idea what was going on on his end, I had no idea. I was in a complete happiness – an unknown happiness.”

The groomsmen contacted the wedding party to tell them he was gone, she claims. Kayley said: “We woke up at a quarter past six when the makeup artist arrived, had breakfast together and then started getting ready.

“One of the groomsmen contacted my best friend to tell him the groom was gone, and the wedding party hid my phone so they could decide what was the best way to tell me and I wouldn’t know. not from anyone else.

“They wanted to make sure he was definitely gone before they freaked me out. I found my phone and saw I had a missed call from his mum. I called her back and she was crying and m said he had gone for a walk early in the morning, and he was gone.

“At that time I wasn’t nervous, I was still hopeful, because throughout our relationship he had occasionally gone for a walk or a drive to clear his head when he was nervous. For a few hours, I said he was going to be there, and I reassured the girls, I sincerely believed, hand on heart, that he was going to be there.

“I asked the girls, his family and the groomsmen to keep getting ready because I honestly believed he was going to be there.”

Kayley Stead on 'her wedding day'
Kayley Stead on ‘her wedding day’

At around 11am, Kayley had just sat down to get her hair done with her makeup done when she spoke to the groom’s father on the phone. She claims he told her that her partner would not attend the wedding.

Kayley said: “By then I was gone. I was sobbing. Once I told my parents, the hairdresser and the videographer, that’s when I had to say it wouldn’t happen.

“As a joke, the videographer said, ‘Why don’t you girls carry on? You spent all that money, you’re not getting it back, all your guests are here, why don’t you go?’

“My sister was redoing my makeup, because by then it was all gone, and she said, ‘Why don’t you do it, Kayley?’

“That’s when I said to myself, I’m going to do it. I had spent all this money, I couldn’t wait to eat, to dance with my father, to spend time with my family, so why not?”

The two nuptials headed to the ceremony room together and told the guests what had happened before asking them to go to the garden to meet Kayley instead.

Kayley said: “I didn’t want to see the ceremony room – I never saw what it looked like. When my sister and my best friend were explaining what had happened to the guests, everyone was crying because they were looking forward to that day.

“I asked for 10 minutes for myself before I saw my guests, then rather than walking down the aisle, I walked around the corner in my dress and everyone was looking at me. No one knew what to do, I think they were a little scared to say something, and then everyone started cheering me on and hugging me.”

Kayley Stead on 'her wedding day'
Kayley Stead on ‘her wedding day’

All of the groomsmen stayed, as well as all of his friends, family and loved ones. With their support, Kayley continued with the day she had planned without her husband and made changes throughout to turn a devastating day into a great one.

Instead of the traditional bride and groom entrance, Kayley was joined by the groomsmen and bridesmaids as they sang and danced to Lizzo’s “Good as Hell” as they made their way to the top table. She said: “We were just doing things off the cuff, really. It was all based on instinct, and we went for it.

“I still wanted photos because all the groomsmen and bridesmaids looked absolutely amazing, and I wanted them to have their photos as they normally would. The photographer also took a photo of me in my dress in the garden, then we did family photos and bridesmaid photos instead of the bride and groom.

“You can probably see a few tear marks on my face, but I love the photos. I was never going to give a speech, but I wanted to thank everyone for staying because they didn’t have to. It was a very delicate situation for them to be there, but they all stayed.

“I wanted to make sure everyone knew it wasn’t about sadness, we were going to get through this.

“Everyone kept saying sorry to me, but I wanted it to stop – they didn’t choose this path, they chose to stay, so let’s celebrate that.”

The photo booth originally displayed “Mr. and Mrs.’ with what would have been the couple’s married name, but was quickly replaced with a sign reading ‘Kayley’s Shindig’. Rather than sharing her first dance with the groom, Kayley instead danced with her dad, brothers and groomsmen to Dolly Parton’s “Love You To The Moon and Back.”

Kayley said: “It’s always been my dream to dance with my dad at my wedding. He’s 71 and I’ve always been worried that he and my mum, Dee, 63, won’t be at my wedding, so I always wanted to have my dance with him.

“My four brothers and the groomsmen joined me because I wanted to thank them for staying. They didn’t run away, and I would totally understand if they did, but they stayed by my side all day.”

Kayley Stead, 27
Kayley Stead, 27

Instead of walking through the sparkler tunnel with her groom, Kayley walked through alone and partied the night away with her guests before spending the night in the bridal suite with her bridesmaid and one of her best friends. friends. Kayley is now adjusting to a new single life without her husband and is not going on a honeymoon in Turkey.

She packed up her ex’s things from home and left them with her family without a word or explanation from him, she claims.

Kayley said: “My best friends haven’t left me since, they slept with me in the bedroom so I wasn’t alone because it was a weird space to be in without seeing all of your stuff. I ne’ I don’t believe in fighting fire with fire, I prefer to handle the situation as best I can and hold my head high.

“I don’t want anyone to think that I gave him a reason to leave me because I had no desire before he did this. I had no idea, no signal. He never showed me no reason why he would leave me that day.

“A few days before, we were going to eat together, he was talking about the honeymoon and he bought me a book last Christmas with a million reasons why he loved me inside, all handwritten with our special moments.

“After finding out he wasn’t coming to the wedding, I decided I didn’t want to remember that day as one of utter sadness. There were so many special moments, like the entrance to my wedding , the march of the sparklers, the first dance and the punches the wedding cake.There was still happiness in the day.

Kayley Stead on 'her wedding day'
Kayley Stead on ‘her wedding day’

Since the wedding, Kayley’s friends have set up a GoFundMe page to try and help Kayley recover some money after spending all of her savings that day. Kayley’s best friend and bridesmaid, Jordie Cullen, 27, who set up the GoFundMe page, said: “Kayley has a heart of gold and would do anything for anyone.

“She didn’t deserve to be left on her wedding morning with no explanation and no contact from the groom. We are now asking you to help us get our daughter back, dust herself off and move on.

“As best friends and family, we want to help her get a fresh start so she never has to suffer financially from the aftermath of this ordeal.”

The groom declined to comment.


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