Post # 1
My brother just got engaged. We have a strained relationship. He is nice on the surface, but he has done some absolutely awful things. I would love to cut him out of my life, but I am polite out of respect for the rest of the family. I barely know his FI, who is nice but shallow.
I found out that she plans on asking me to be a bridesmaid. Obviously, I do not want to. I don’t know how much she knows about the strained relationship. I want to give a polite no as my answer. I am not willing to lie but don’t think it is a good idea to tell the full truth here. I know there are a lot of reasons people often give, but none of them apply to me. I haven’t been a bridesmaid in a while, but was one for another sibling. I have the time. I have the money. She knows all of these.
What would you say?
ETA: One other thing that makes me concerned about how this will go- I recently overheard her telling someone how she was once a bridesmaid for someone she barely know because, “No one ever says no when you ask them to be a bridesmaid!” I did a mental facepalm at that moment.
Post # 3
@guitargirl: I really appreciate the offer, but I think it would be better if you chose one of your closest friends instead. (Next sentence if you’re married) I remember how important it was to have my closest friends as my bridesmaids and I don’t want to deprive you of that experience. (Or if you’re not married) I know when I choose my bridesmaids I will want to have my closest friends with me and I think you should have yours with you. Thank you so much for the offer, but I just wouldn’t feel right being a bridesmaid for you when I’m sure there are close friends you would rather include.
Make longer or shorter as appropriate.
ETA: You can also mention that you don’t want her to feel obligated to ask you just because you are family. You are very happy for their marriage (ok maybe this part is a lie for you) but think there are better ways for you to show your support than by being a bridesmaid.
Post # 4
@asscherlover: I agree. Thanks but no thanks.
Post # 5
@asscherlover: Great answer!
I think that’s the best way to go.
Post # 6
Is it possible that she knows, but wants to take this opportunity for you to get to know each other, and possibly repair your relationship with your brother? I trust you when you say he’s done some horrible things…but, would it be worth it to you (and for the sake of family peace) to try to be the better person and make amends? If not, I would definitely lie. Telling the truth here sounds like it could just cause a big divide in the family, and it sounds like you want to avoid the drama as much as possible! Your lie doesn’t have to be super complex…how does she know you’re not busy? Maybe you have a huge project at work or your neighbor needs a lot of help with stuff and you’re a really nice person. Or, you’re working really hard to pay off your credit card debt/car/mortgage and need to save all your money. Or maybe you already have a commitment on the day of the wedding? Good luck! It sounds like a tough and emotional situation for you, but I hope that you’re able to confront it or get out of it as soon as possible, with as little drama as possible!
Post # 7
@asscherlover: I retract my previous response, this is perfect.
Post # 8
@Dialysate: @StuporDuck: @armychica06: Thanks! I’m hoping the bride doesn’t have no friends because if she does then I’m all out of ideas.
Post # 9
@guitargirl: I am in a similar situation as my brother is getting married shortly after me. I am not close to my brother and find him and his fiance extremly obnoxious (i’ve only met her once and wasn’t really a fan of her). I am just sucking it up and being a bridesmaid and will have her as a bridesmaid in mine. I was also trying to think of ways to get out of it but in the end i feel it’s better to just be a bridesmaid and let her be one then causing unnecessary drama with the other family members who will definatly ask “why are you not a bridesmaid”. I really wouldn’t want to be bothered answering this questions over and over again. I won’t be attending her shower or bachelorette party and already told her I will only be around the day before their wedding. (They live far away). All I am doing is buying the dress and I will do my own hair and makeup. Being in the wedding will cost me $170 and 20 minutes of my time for their ceremony to avoid the drama.
In the end it is your decision. If you decide to be in the wedding make sure you tell her how involved you plan to be.
Post # 10
You are certainly not obligated to be her bridesmaid, but to give her the benefit of the doubt, maybe she does know how strained your relationship with your brother is and this is her attempt at reconciliation?
Post # 11
@asscherlover: The only reason I disagree with this is that you’re telling her how she should pick her party. I don’t think you need to explain why you don’t think you’re a good match…that just sounds like family drama and hurt feelings to me. This might be a good time for a “can’t afford it” or “no time” white lie.
Post # 12
I would just say ” At this time in my life I really don’t feel like it is something I can do, but I really appreciate you asking me and am happy knowing that you will have other great friends standing up there with you.” I think that will keep her from asking questions and not make her feel like you hate her.