My Maid of Honour has been a close frined for almost 10 years, during that time, I've supported her through the breakdown of her own marriage, the birth of her child and various other unfortunate life events that she's needed a helping hand with. All of which, I've been happy to as she is my dear friend and I love her to bits. When I got engaged last year, she was the absolute one and ony choice as Maid of Honour, and to my delight, she accepted. It means a lot to have her there with me that day and she made all the right noises about being excited, ideas for things we could plan together etc... which was great. i felt very privelaged to have someone so willing to be involved.
Except now we're at the stage of actually starting to plan, it's starting to feel a bit like hot air. One of my bridesmaid's ;ives in Dubai (I'm in the UK) and so when she visited home at Christmas, we organised a get together so that the girls could all meet each other and say hi before the chaos starts. Maid of Honour bailed on this without much of an excuse, she also didn't make my engagement party as she went on a date with a guy she met online, and she can't come to look at dresses with me as she says she can't get the time off work. This would be fine if I'd even asked her to do any of this stuff, but she volunteered up front, and even suggested dates for things. i went ahead and booked and now she can't make any of it. We've still got a good while to go so I wasn't too worried, but she suggested visiting a bridal fair this coming weekend. Her childs father lives next door and he's off work that day, plus my fiance, my future sister in law, and two of my other bridesmaid's (all of whom she know well and are parents themselves) have offered to watch her 2 year old for a couple of hours (small fair by the way) while we go along and get some ideas, do some research. There's a particular vendor i'm interested in that makes wedding archways that i'd love to speak to, get some costings etc. However, it doesn't seem to have crossed her mind that it may not be the best place for a 2 year old? Aside from it being busy, hot and utterly boring for a small one, it falls right on lunchtime so she intends to feed her daughter whilst we go around (solids, sandwiches etc). I know from previous experience that the little girl hates being in a pushchair and will undoubtedly scream for a while, whilct dropping food all over the place, not to mention the hall is up two flights of stairs with no lift so it's going to be a logistical nightmare with a kid in tow! I love the kid, but I'm hurt that my Maid of Honour isn't really going to be able to focus on the day itself, and that we'll get next to nothing out of it with the distraction of an irritable fidgety toddler. Especially when there are at least half a dozen babysitters that are happy to help out free of charge.
I know it's not a big deal, but it would take me all day to list the ways i've gone out of my way to help her over the years and I didn't think her giving me a couple of hours of her time was a huge ask. She's a fabulous sales person and her negotiating skills would be invaluable at an event such as this. I could understand if I'd asked her to come with me, but it was her suggestion.
Am I being a meany, and should I just get over myself and stop being so whiny!!
"She's a fabulous sales person and her negotiating skills would be invaluable at an event such as this" Have you put it to her like this? It sounds like maybe she needs a gentle reminder of what the bridal fair is going to be like, and how genuinely helpful it would be to have her there and giving her full attention. Otherwise, could the 2 BMs who volunteered to babysit come with you as well? Gives you someone to hang with if mum ends up being distracted by child, and they could be a couple of helping hands with the kid. Kind of make an informal girlie day of it. Perhaps suggest a ladies' lunch or glass of wine after as an extra incentive to leave the little one happily elsewhere?
@andreae: Thanks so much for your reply, and yes, When she initailly mentioned the fair, she suggested herself about lunch after, I suppose it's my fault for jumping to the conclusion that she intended to leave her little girl at home. I'm just a bit suprised that someone who's been to bridal fair's before would think that was an ideal environment for a toddler.
great suggestion about asking the other two by the way. I will take that and run with it, that way, I'll still be able to have a bit of a browse if the little one needs tending to. I hope it didn't come across as though I'm a child hating monster, I'm certainly not, I just wouldn't have thought it was a great place to try and cope with a bored little one, and given that we have to pay admission (my treat) I would like to get something out of it.
Thanks agin for your reply, and for not bashing me as a complete cow! x
I get how you're feeling, but at the same time, she has a small child to take care of, plus other things going on in her life. Your wedding is still a year and a half away, so it's likely not on the top of her priority list yet. I'm not saying that's right, I'm just saying that's how it is. I started planning my wedding about 18 months out too, and no one really seemed to care or make an effort, but that's because it's just too far away for people to really plan for.
Perhaps she's not willing to use a babysitter (has she before?) or there is another issue behind the scenes that you don't know about. Regardless, I think that if you want her to attend, and she won't get a babysitter, you're either going to have to decide if having her there is the important part, or going alone/not at all is a better option.
@abbie017: Hi Abbie017, all of which I completely understand, which is why I never made any suggestion about going to the show. It was her idea and I gratefully accepted. I'd never have thought any less of the situation had she not brought it up. In fact, I probably wouldn't even have bothered going myself so early on as there's heaps of time to get bits and pieces done...
Our friends / Parents / families babysit for each other all the time so I don't think she has an issue with leaving the little one, I think it's more that she hasn't really thought through what the day is about, as andreae says. She's so clued up on all this sort of thing, I was really excited at having her there with me, then felt a little disappointed that we'd likley spend the day trying to keep her little one from getting too bored and fed up, which is understandable, but in this case, completely avoidable. x
@sazzle: Mmm...yeah, it doesn't sound like she is devoting a lot of time and effort to being your MIL. Yeah, she shouldn't have missed your engagement party and she should honour her commitments. But what you don't seem to be keeping in mind is that she has her own life. She's a working single mother with a small child to look after. I know excuses like 'I'm just REALLY busy' don't sound very true, but as the child of a single mum I can assure you this probably means she's swarmed under. You don't have a child and the commitments that she does so it's hard for you to understand how it is for her, I get that. It's also annyoing when you realise that nobody cares about your wedding nearly as much as you, your mum and your FI do.
As for not leaving her child with a babysitter, yeah that is annyoing and kind of rude too. Don't be afraid to be up front about it. Tell her that you know how much little Jayden hates being pushed in a stroller, point out the stairs issue and say that you're worried that her daughter will become irritable and disturb other patrons. If she insists her child will behave, tell her that it's fine and that you'll take your FSIL or mum if she really feels like she can't leave her child. PLEASE don't let her bring her baby though because I guarentee you that you're NOT going to get a warm reception from vendors or shoppers if you're toting a screaming, food throwing toddler with you.
So yeah, I don't think that your MIL is being thoughtless (at least not intentionally) she just has more important things in her life right now than your wedding. I know it's sometimes hard to read on WeddingBee about some 23 year old bride whose 7 sorority sister bridesmaids are just soooo excited to be making pre wedding scrapbooks and inspiration boards and could write the book on bachelorette parties and thinking 'why can't I have that?!'. But the reality is that if you're not a young twentysomething who's marrying her high school sweetheart straight out of school, then your BMs probably have busy schedules and a friend (even a BFF) getting married isn't the BFD-be-all-and-end-all it used to be. Sorry.
If you feel like your MOH is reluctant to get herself involved in the wedding or disinterested then have a talk with her about it. Tell her you understand she's busy and ask her if there's anything you could maybe do to help her out to free her up a bit or something. Ask her if you've done something wrong. DON'T make it about what she's doing wrong, because chances are she probably feels pretty bad about all of this.
Thank you so much for your honest responses. And I do genuinely take your comments on board. there are certainly ways in which I could be more understanding, as there are certainly more ways in which she perhaps could be more realistic. I have considered all of your suggestions and I would just like to stress that I asked her to be my maid of honour because of who she is and what our freindship means to us, not because i expected her to cater to my every need in the coming months. I really don't want our wedding to drive any sort of wedge between a solid friendship, so I suppose i cam on here just to get it off my chest rather than approach her.
And if she genuienly can't make stuff because of her own life and other commitments, that has absolutely no bearing or detrimenatl effect on our freindship, i'm just frustrated that she offered all these things, then failed to deliver. I expect nothing of my mates other than to show up on the day (I'm paying fro dress, shoes, hair, accomodation etc) and pretend they like their presents. That's it. If they would like to help me with the final details, then that's great, but no drama if they don't or can't. But to offer to take on these bits and pieces and then not is bound to make even the most laid back bride feel a bit disappointed.
And I do have kids, thye are a bit older so not a problem. But as a mother who adores my children, there is still no way I would think it appropriate to take a irritable baby to a bridal show. As has been mentioned, it's a big exciting day out for many brides. I would never want to be the person that intruded on that for other people.
Thanks again ladies. My other bridesmaid is now joining us and so if MOH needs to deal with little one, she can take care of her, or at least there are other pairs of hands to help. I don't want to offend her by asking her straight out if she could leave little one at home. I would've thought it was a given. Particularly as there is plenty of help available.
PS - First time marriage for me. MOH married three times so she understands better than most the processes, wheras I'm hugely intimidated by it all!
@andreae: Read my bridesmaids posts...I feel your pain.
I have considered all of your suggestions and I would just like to stress that I asked her to be my maid of honour because of who she is and what our freindship means to us, not because i expected her to cater to my every need in the coming months. I really don't want our wedding to drive any sort of wedge between a solid friendship, so I suppose i cam on here just to get it off my chest rather than approach her.
- yup...you sound just like me last year.
Nice that she got to go first, huh? And had all your attention then for her milestones...now that you need her and it's your turn she's MIA.
She's being a sh*tty friend in return. It's true. You will have to be the bigger person and I know exactly how you feel. You have every right to feel disappointed.
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