It’s Like Road Rage, Except I’m Sitting At My Desk

Someone sent me this article the other day. I read it, waiting for the “ha I’m just kidding!” line, but it never came.

What.
The.
Frack.

Now, I agree with the idea that you should discuss things like budget and what kind of things you expect from your bridal party at the beginning, but that is where any potential “oh I see their point” ends.

When you are discussing budget, the conversation should sound like this:

  • Bride: Hey Sally?  I was wondering what you would be comfortable with for a budget for the bridesmaids dress?
  • Sally: I would like to stay under $X for the dress.
  • Bride: Wonderful!  I’ll remember that when we start looking for dresses.

Not this:

  • Bride: Hey Sally, I’ve actually already picked a dress.  It’s $500.  You should order it.
  • Sally: Oh, that’s more money than I think I am able to spend.  Can we pick something else?
  • Bride: Hey I didn’t complain when you picked a dress I hated.  Suck it up and either buy it or just be a guest.

That conversation about what you expect?  That should look more like this:

  • Bride: Hey Sally!  I was wondering if you’d be willing to help out with setting stuff up for the wedding, or if you wanted to go dress shopping with us?

And this:

  • Sally: Hey Bride!  I was wondering if anyone had mentioned anything about planning a shower/bachelorette party for you, because I’d like to do it or help out with it.

And less like this:

  • Bride: Yo, Sally, if our friendship means absolutely anything to you you’ll come over and help me tie 500 bows, lick 200 envelopes, and essentially be my indentured servant.  Oh, while we’re on the subject, I want a bachelorette party where we all travel to Greece for a week.  You should get on planning that.  May I recommend taking out a second mortgage so you can pay for it?

That, in simple terms, is bullshit.  Weddings are not quid pro quo, they are not times to get even, and they are most certainly not a license to demand things of people you call your friends that in any other situation would be considered completely outrageous (to be clear, it’s still outrageous in this situation; my point is just that if you couldn’t justify it any other time, you can’t justify it now).  A bridesmaid is not your slave.  Your MOH is not your official party planner.

Talk about a budget, but talk about it in the sense that the bridal party tells you what they can afford, and you stick to it.  Throwing a shower is optional.  Throwing a bachelorette party is optional.  Helping is optional.  The only thing they need to do is get the dress and be there for your wedding.

I honestly have a hard time believing that people like this exist.  I thought this was the stuff of movies and badly scripted reality shows.  In what other scenario can someone possibly think it is okay to lay out terms and conditions of their friendship but on camera?  I truly feel sorry for the women who find themselves in a bridal party where the bride seems to have these expectations, because it is painfully obvious that such a bride is more interested in the bridesmaids being props and helpers rather than being honored witnesses to the wedding.

I almost feel worse for the bride that acts this way though, because it is painfully obvious that such a woman is more concerned about the party that is the wedding than the reason for it: the marriage.  And that, my friends, is why the divorce rate is through the roof.

On that happy (and completely opposite) note, this is officially my last weekend as a legally single lady!  I’m spending the weekend packing up everything that needs to migrate to MI with me on Wednesday and my parents on Friday, doing laundry, and trying to relax.  It feels almost kind of surreal…

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Posted on May 31, 2012, in Misc. Topics (Wedding), Priorities, Wedding Planning Isn't For Sissies and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. What a terrible article! If you want to blow a ton of money on your wedding, that’s fine, but expecting your entire bridal party to throw the same amount of money into your “special day” and calling them a cheapskate if they don’t is petty and ridiculous, especially in this economy.

    My maid of honor is getting her PhD, one of my bridesmaids is a single mother, and the other bridesmaid just got back from a stint in the Peace Corps – they’re all on tight budgets. I’m just happy they’re all going to be there – especially since my MOH has to fly down for the wedding – and I don’t want to burden them unnecessarily. I’m asking them to wear black dresses, because they all have them already. My requirements for shoes are pretty simple too – don’t wear sneakers. I may be on the other end of the spectrum from the woman who wrote that, but shouldn’t everyone’s main concern when choosing their bridal party be how close they are to the people and not how much money they’re willing to spend?

    • Eeeeeeeexactly. Thank you for being one of the reasonable ones. And major props to you for being so accommodating for your girls’ situations and letting them wear things they already own.

  2. Ughhhh… That is ridiculous! I hate that this person assumed that girls would be like that! I am like exactly the opposite. Most of my bridesmaids are in grad school/starting a family and Cobalt’s groomsmen are just starting to establish careers after undergrad/law school so Cobalt and I made sure that the dress I picked out and the tux he picked out were under $100 each. And then I took one of my bridesmaids with me to try on the dress I liked to make sure she liked it and she thought it was comfortable/made her look pretty. And same for the shoes (less than $50). As for makeup and hair, they know how to do those things best so I am leaving that up to them.

    As for my bachelorette party, my MOH and I are planning a day outing and a night outing for my bridesmaids and any other girls (especially the wives of Cobalt’s groomsmen) who get to CA early and want to spend some time frolicking. Obviously everyone will be invited to both outings but that way people can plan accordingly for what works for their schedules. Why do people make this so complicated? I would hate to be a bridesmaid for one of those brides… Actually I would hate to be one of those brides too because, like you said, I would be solely focused on the day and making my friends pay for me instead of celebrating my relationship with my guy… and that is depressing…

    • My girls had given me a budget for their dresses, and I was completely fine with it and wanted them to pick out their own dress. The one they fell in love with was over the budget they had originally said they wanted to stick to, but they insisted they were fine with the extra cost because they could wear this one again. I still felt awful about it, and it wasn’t even my doing! I told them a color shoe I would ideally like, knowing that they all already owned something in that family, and told them they could do whatever they wanted for hair and makeup, if they wanted to do anything at all. I figured that kind of sort of balanced it out, and I could feel less guilty about the budget thing, which my MOH thinks is hilarious since it was their choice to begin with so she says I’m being silly 🙂

      I just don’t get how some of these women can use their friends as props. I really don’t. I know the wedding planning stuff is complicated and stressful, but that’s no excuse to forget you’re planning a wedding, not staging a production.

      • Sometimes I worry that some women even use the groom as a prop. Like “Ohhhh I feel like I should be married by now… I guess you’ll do…” :-/ I guess if a girl thinks her groom is a prop, then she won’t mind treating her friends like that too. 😦

        • Unfortunately I think you hit the nail on the head. Weddings seem to no longer be about marriage, and marriage seems to no longer be about spending the rest of your life with this one person who fits you and completes you.

          • Exactly. I actually read an article today that was focused on basically how to get a man to marry you so you can have your dream wedding. It was pretty sickening, especially considering how many women seem to focus solely on the wedding and forget about the whole marriage thing. Don’t get me wrong, I’m really excited about the wedding and I think it will be great, but unless you’re religious, it’s really just a fun party where you get to celebrate your love with your family and friends. Too many people thing that marriage=love (instead of love potentially leading to marriage) or that their relationships will suddenly become fairy tales if they have that fairy tale wedding. The wedding is one day, but your marriage will (hopefully) be for the rest of your lives.

  3. Saaaaaaaaaad… but I agree. Well we (and sounds like Ariella42 too) will be different! Ahaha… 🙂

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