Post # 1
My wonderful fiancé and I are getting married in January 2010. We both want a very small and intimate wedding ceremony. So we have decided to escape from San Francisco to the mountains in Tennessee. We each have selected two of our dearest friends and our immediate family. He has also included his godfather and godmother. We became engaged in March and since then have been planning this wonderful weekend. We booked a cabin that sleeps 26 guests and have placed our families all together in the cabin to bond over the five day event. We ask only that our guests pay $200 which goes to the cabin and all the food and wine they can eat and drink have for the entire stay. Everyone has been more than accepting of this…. everyone except one.
My bridesmaid first said she was okay with the cost and thought it was crazy low and agreed it was cheaper than a hotel. After two months, she tells me that she cannot afford the $200. Not wanting anyone to miss out due to finances, I tell her I will cover the cost for her. Three days later she booked a trip to England for a month. For the past two months, I have listened to her tell me how expensive things are for her. I have only asked our guests to share in the $200 cabin fee. She has told me she has to spend thousands for her MBA program because she failed two courses. I listen and try my best to uplift her spirits. I even tell her that if she cannot come to Tennessee, I completely understand. I don’t want our wedding to be a financial burden for anyone. She continues to insist that she wants to be there. I offer to pay for her room, her food, and even her dress to help out on the costs. Then last week after telling me again that she is in a financial pickle, she books a trip to Thailand.
I feel like a fool. I have been offering to help my friend just so she can take part in our wedding but am shocked that her elaborate vacations are coming before me. When I told her I was hurt and felt foolish, she tells me that she does not want to let down the friends she just met this past July by not going to Thailand with them. She pours her heart out by telling me that she does not want me to feel guilty over her finances but then throws it in my face in the next sentence how much she is spending just to come to the wedding.
This morning she emailed me and asked if she can invite the guy she just met to share in the $200. I tell her no and remind her that we have picked only 24 people to share our ceremony with us. I don’t want some stranger staying with my family and me during the happiest day of my life.
My fiancé and his mother want me to un-invite her. They say they have seen the stress, frustration, and heartache she has caused me and only believes she will continue to add stress to the wedding.
Am I a bridezilla? Should I let her bring a stranger? Note that if she brought someone it would cause us more expenses for the wedding. Should I just let her stay for free and pay her weekend for her? I need some bride support.
Post # 3
- Wedding: June 2010 - Ceremony - First United Methodist Church; Reception - My parents' house!
That’s so frustrating! It seems like you’re bending over backwards for her and she’s just walking all over you. I’d say no to the stranger invite, tbh.
Have you talked to her about how you feel? I think before un-inviting her it might be wise to explain all the problems you have, and how you feel that you’ve been taken advantage of. See what she says.
I’m sorry you’re having to deal with this. 🙁
Post # 4
I think you have done enough to help her. So just let her know that the cabin is full. Which it is so you’re not lying. Then send her a link to another cabin they can rent. If she wants to bring him then they can do their own thing. This will probably discourage her from wanting to bring him. So one of two things can happen now… 1) She comes to the wedding or 2) she doesn’t come to the wedding.
The bad part too is that you still have 5 months to the wedding. So try to stay cool. Chances are they won’t be seeing each other come Christmas problem avoided.
Post # 5
I did speak to her and told her how I felt. I told her how foolish I felt that I offer to pay for her way when she says she doesn’t have the money and then books two trips that cost over $3K. She told me she was sorry that she made me feel guilty about her money situation and did not want me to feel burdened. Then in the same paragraph she says she is spending $2K already in different travels that month, $15K in school, so what is another $200. HOW IS THAT TRYING NOT TO MAKE ME FEEL GUILTY! Ohhhh… I’m so sad. I have lost sleep and am having chest pains now. I am more sadden by the thought that my friend does not see me as I see her.
Post # 6
dude. uninvite her. if she was really a good friend, she would stop trying to pull you into her vortex of guilt. just tell her you have reconsidered and dotn have the $200 to lend her. if she still wants to come, she needs to come up with the money herself. if not, then hey, she made her choice.
Post # 7
Yuck! What a horrible situation to be in!
If I’m understanding your post – you are paying for all airfare, attire, etc. and the only thing they’d need to contribute is $200 ??
It sounds like something else is going on with your friend to make her not want to participate in your wedding. Since she obviously has money to spend on other things, I’d have a heart to heart with her and find out what is really going on. Be upfront with her and tell her that you feel like you are being taken advantage. It’s one thing if she really didn’t have money, but another thing to take your generosity and run with it. Hopefully, an honest conversation can transpire and you can figure out what’s really going on.
When you talk to her, just tell her how her behavior is making you feel and how it all doesn’t seem to add up. Hopefully, some clarity will be shed on the situation.
Also – when she emailed you about bringing they guy – it sounded like she’s willing to pay towards the $200 – did I read that incorrect? Maybe she thinks she’s contributing in the end….
EDIT: just read that you did talk to her. I’m so sad for you. I think you should tell her that based on her actions, it makes you think that your friendship is not valuable and she doesn’t want to be at your wedding. It sounds like she doesn’t have a clue how her actions are affecting you. Good luck to you.
Post # 8
oh, that sounds horrible. with such a small wedding, i understand that you don’t want a stranger there. there were so many other people that you didn’t invite, so why should he be there? and it’s not one of those situations where she needs a “plus one” since it’s such an intimate group. just tell her no, he can’t come (lots of brides have to explain this and while it’s difficult it’s fine), and then let her make up her mind. don’t offer her the money again, though, and please stop feeling guilty about whether she can pay. clearly she can pay but she is choosing to prioritize other things.
Post # 9
You have really done everything in your power to help minimize the costs for her to attend your wedding. What is probably concerning her is that five days is a long time for a wedding, and not everyone has a desire to stay in a cabin or fly from San Francisco to Tennessee (are there direct flights? I couldn’t get one from NY to Chattanooga a few months ago).
My guess is that the logistics of this wedding are what your bridesmaid dislikes, and she handled the situation all wrong. She should have been upfront with you, and politely declined the bridal party invitation and wedding invitation. It’s kind of a tough to turn down a wedding invitation when the bride asks you to be in her bridal party, so she is dragging her feet and trying to avoid telling you how she really feels. I’m guessing that if you politely give her an out, she will gladly take it.
I hope that my post doesn’t come off as a criticism of your decisions – I really do feel that you have the right to choose and design any kind of wedding you want, and that your guests should just decline if it is too expensive/too inconvenient for them to attend. I really do believe that your bridesmaid should have handled this differently and should have told you the truth from the start and you would have planned accordingly and been disappointed but not nearly as upset as now. Oh, and you absolutely should not let her bring a guest if you are having such a tiny wedding and especially not after all this stress.
Post # 10
When we planned our wedding, we did not want to have a bridal party. It was just so small. She kept telling me how great it would be to be a bridesmaid so I said I could use her and my other girlfriend as bridesmaids. She was excited and think kindly told me that she hoped not to upstage me at the wedding. She was dead serious. I just laughed to myself and dismissed it. I have done everything but beg her to just see me San Francisco and not worry about coming to Tennessee. When I tell her not to worry that I love her and we could celebrate with friends and family in SF, she tells me over and over that she wants to come to the ceremony and not the reception. The guy she wants to bring is someone she just met. And she goes through guys on a daily basis.
I appreciat you consider her side professorbee. I have been trying to do that for months now and am now feeling foolish.
Post # 11
I had tried to see this from her perspective, but if becoming a bridesmaid was her idea then her actions are really inexcusable. And the other comment about not upstaging the bride is quite strange. This is a sad and stressful way to end a friendship, but she doesn’t sound particularly stable or very nice. I’m really sorry that you are going through this.
Post # 12
I didn’t vote because your poll didn’t allow for a third option. Yes, she should be allowed to come but she IS unreasonable. I would just field her requests as you would with any other guests and try not to engage emotionally. No, she can’t bring a date, just like everyone else. You are probably on the hook for whatever you have offered to pay for so far, but do not offer to pick up anything else. If she can’t attend because she isn’t responsible with money, that will be regrettable but ultimately not detract from your day. Good luck.