There’s a secret that no one tells you when your SO pops the question; you’re might lose a friend or two before the big day. There are so many reasons for this that we’ll get into below and hopefully help you mitigate any bad feelings or hurt friends.
When it’s time for bridal parties to get together in preparation for weddings, there are bound to be some disagreements between members, sometimes even physical blows. One wedding planner told us about how he witnessed two girls ripping out each other’s extensions just hours before a ceremony was set to take place – this is not something you want on your big day!
There are so many reasons why friendships fall out before the big day. Your friends who have already had their wedding may be disappointed or jealous because they’re no longer the bride or groom, AKA center of attention. They may be angry at someone for something unrelated to an upcoming wedding, feeling a little neglected by all this attention on your life partner, or not happy with who you picked to be your life partner. It could even be something as simple as a disagreement on budget and bridesmaid dresses!
As you embark on the wedding planning process, it’s natural to experience lots of emotions. Sometimes it can be hard to maintain friendships when feelings get hurt and people start arguing. The best way for these conflicts is resolved will determine whether or not you remain friends forever. Here are seven reasons why emotional issues arise during a wedding planning process and how you deal with them:
It’s good etiquette to allow your bridal party to have a plus one.
Since weddings are so expensive, many couples have to decide who they can cut from the guest list. Most people may be their friends or family members, but some might not even know what you look like and came only for free food! Do you want a guest’s recent friend with benefits coming? What about someone a guest met last week on Tinder and slept with twice – do they get an invite too?! Don’t feel bad if it seems crass; this is a decision every couple needs to make together to save money (and sanity)!
I think it’s a nice gesture to give your bridal party a plus one. They’re doing you a massive favor by participating and spending money at the wedding, so try to pay them back by ensuring they have a great time! But if you can’t afford another guest, then be honest about not accommodating them. They may even be willing to pay for their plus one to attend. If they make a big fuss about it and are making it about themselves, hopefully, they let it go if you talk it out. Otherwise, you might want to consider if that friend has your best interest in mind.
Let them say no to the dress!
It’s always a good idea to respect your bridesmaid’s (and friend’s) feelings and desires regarding their wedding attire. They may not like something about the bridesmaid dress you selected, or they might think that it costs too much money year after year for them to attend one of your weddings. If this is the case, there are some things you can do as a bride-to-be!
One thing could be changing up an accessory on the neckline. Another option would be asking what sort of help will make them feel more comfortable wearing whatever type of clothing item they don’t want (even if it’s just during pictures!). It’s also important that even though being overly detailed oriented with everything doesn’t work all times, sometimes putting their needs first will make sure that they are happy in the planning process and on the day of your wedding.
Bridesmaid, Maid of Honor, Man of Honor, or Guest?
Choosing a maid of honor can be highly stressful. There may be few friends or family members vying for the spot, especially if they’re your ride-or-die friend. Or perhaps someone thinks they would get asked to do bridesmaid duty but is invited as a guest instead. If your friend brings it up and is hurt, you have to soothe their emotional pain by telling them something genuine like, “I love you always no matter what; I’m not ranking my friends because this was just an honest decision on my part – please don’t take offense.” It would help if you also reassured them that being a guest may sound less fun at first glance. It’s more fun because you get to enjoy everything and not have any responsibilities!
Being a bridesmaid comes with a lot of responsibility; be wary of how much help you ask for!
Being a bridesmaid is not easy; it’s a tall order. Between addressing envelopes, DIYs, going to dress fittings, and planning, it’s likely that they’ll feel overwhelmed at some point or another! If possible, try limiting the amount of work on their plates – your crew should feel honored but never taken advantage of. If it seems like things are too overwhelming for one person to handle, ask someone close, like a family member or friend, if they can step in and help out.
Money can cause stress and issues.
It’s always a good idea to be mindful of how much money you and your bridesmaids are spending on the wedding, especially if one bridesmaid feels like she can’t keep up. Don’t let her feelings go unnoticed! Explain that it’s more important to have her threat the wedding than any of the expenses. If you can forgo her buying a matching pair of shoes or help her cover some costs, go for it! Friendships should never come down to cash flow.
You might disagree on hair and makeup.
The other important thing to remember about your bridesmaids is that they might not love the hair and makeup vision you have for them as much as you do. Again, compromise can solve this problem – offering up a few more hairstyles or makeover options would be helpful. Hair and makeup may seem like a big deal, but in reality, it doesn’t matter too much because your wedding is about celebrating your love, not choosing between a calm tone or warm tone eyeshadow. You always want to keep in mind how your friends feel when selecting their looks on the wedding day, so try making sure there are some extra choices available!
Jealousy can get the better of your bridesmaids; be empathetic.
Wedding season can be a challenging time for some women. Whether your bridesmaid is going through an emotional breakup or eagerly waiting to get engaged, don’t take her sometimes gloomy mood personally that’s just how she feels right now, and it has nothing to do with you! If things escalate into dramatic displays of sadness, though, have a heart-to-heart chat and offer the option that this may not be the best role in life for her at the moment.
Open up with an apology to see if that soothes tensions.
It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of planning your wedding and regret that you may have unintentionally hurt a friend. So, even if something was only half your fault and there are feelings on both sides, apologize for hurting their feeling with something like: “I’m sorry we got into an argument about my upcoming wedding. I want you at my ceremony and by my side during all those chaotic months leading up to it.” A small gift or card will go a long way!
Elizabeth Nelson has been a wedding venue marketing specialist at Mountain House Estate for over four years. She writes on wedding topics and supports the Mountain House Estate team in creating gorgeous, one-of-a-kind weddings. Her goal is for wedding couples in the Bay Area, Northern California, and beyond to plan a beautiful, Pinterest-worthy wedding without the stress or worry of traditional weddings.