Post # 1
When I got engaged (about 6 months ago now) I decided that I wasn’t going to ask my younger sister (17 & 15 at the time of the wedding) to be BMs because my FI had no one of similar age with them to walk with and felt it would look awkard. I also have a very large family (I am the oldest of 6) and I didn’t want a huge wedding party. I had been a BM in my dad’s second wedding at that age and found it very awkard to hang out with all the older woman and didn’t really enjoy the position so I thought they would feel the same. In addition I knew they could do very little to help with the planning of the bridal shower and bachelorette party at that age and it would put my current BMs in a position to make them feel included without them being able to take on many of the duties necessarry. I still wanted them to be involved as they are EXTREMELY important to me and so I gave them a few options of roles in the wedding and asked them which they would prefer to do. One of them wanted to be a reader and the other my personal attendant. Well I just found out that they are upset that they are not BMs and do not want to do the roles they have chosen. I am devastated to have upset them but also a little hurt that they aren’t just happy for me. How should I handle this situation?
Post # 2
future.mrs.gartland: I say stick to your guns. They can get over it, honestly. You’re still involving them – and in roles that will be much more special than a BM. I have two younger sisters as well (though they’d be 12/15 at the wedding). My mom really really pushed me to have them be BMs – but FI doesn’t have any younger siblings, and they wouldn’t even be able to participate in half the BM functions – they can’t go to most bachelorette parties, they can’t really help plan and host a shower, etc etc. Plus, I didn’t want a huge wedding party. We’re staying at 3 BM/GM, and my sisters will be usherettes. The youngest one is just excited overall, lol, but the oldest one is convinced she’ll still be a BM and still brings it up to me that she’s so excited to be a BM. We’ve had a few talks – both me and my sister and me and my mother – and hopefully she’ll understand at some point. If not, well, *shrug*. The wedding will be how FI and I plan it regardless. It’s not their wedding, so they’ll have to be mature and happy for you in other roles. Really push the individuallity of their particular roles – really push how important it is to you that they are involved, and in something that is more special than a cookie-cutter BM.
(Not saying that BM aren’t important – they are very important – but you’ll need to have them come to the thought that their roles are ‘better’)
Post # 3
I have 3 much older brothers. All 3 now SIL had me as bridesmaids at ages 13, 18 and 20. For the first 2 weddings I walked with grooms’ friends and with the bride’s brother for the last and never felt awkward. For all the showers (including baby showers) I did invitations, games and overall ran the whole the thing (welcome speech, intros, organize gift opening, etc, etc.). For bachelorette parties, I did not go at age 13. For the other two I went to dinner. Honestly, I would have been extremely upset if they excluded me while including the other siblings on both sides just because of my age.
That being said, it is totally your wedding and I’m not judging at all. If that’s what you want, they should keep their feelings quiet and respect your decision. But I guess I get their feelings.
Post # 4
It is totally up to you, but to me, not having someone the same age to walk with is irrelevant. I would invite them, and if necessary, explain they are not coming to bachelorette parties.
Post # 5
They might get over it with time, but you can’t expect to know exactly how they would feel as bridesmaid. Would you consider letting them be junior bridesmaids so they can be part of the group sometimes?
Post # 6
future.mrs.gartland: My feeling is: it’s usually best for family harmony to ask sisters to be bridesmaids. I think you made a mistake not asking them to be BMs in the first place. You should have asked how they felt about it, instead of assuming they wouldn’t want to.
From here, I think it might be best ask them to be BMs or Junior BMs, not paired with any groomsmen. There is no need for the other BMs to include them in anything. Yes it will make a bigger bridal party, but I think it’s worth it.
Post # 7
Junior Bridesmaids might be a good concession. I agree with the 15 year-old feeling awkward. The 17 year old might be ok, but it’s not fun for her if she needs to be left out of things. Perhaps you can say they can be Junior Bridesmaids with none of the associated costs or trips to the loo that are a part of the traditional role?
Post # 8
Make them your bridesmaids!!!!
It doesn’t matter how you and I felt at 15 and 17; it matters how they feel. They are your sisters and they love you. It is clearly important to them.
There are two of them and so they are much less likely to feel awkward than one person on her own..
In addition, being a bridesmaid is a rite of passage to womanhood. There is a certain glamour to it. They’ll enjoy the day and look forward to their own weddings.
Post # 9
I’d agree it’s a bit awkward. I’d be sure to include them, perhaps even givng them dresses, but not fully. They probably don’t realize that they’d have to walk down the isle with a 20-30yo man…which again the 17yo might be more ok with but I would of been super akward with at 15.
And, quite frankly, no matter how well-behaved your groomsmen are, it’s asking for trouble to let an over 21 escort a under 18, especally if that under 18 becomes enamored and the over 21 gets drunk or tipsy. It’s just the way things are today.
I would tell your mom this, that you’re uncomfortable pairing them up with older men. Perhaps they could walk together? I’d say continue to go with your gut but maybe give them the trappings of bridesmaid…
…I can’t immagine having a 15yo in the room when my maid of honor and I talked about things like sex….just wouldn’t be appropriate and may be a bit intimidating for the 15yo.
Post # 10
What do people think of honorary bridesmaids. They will wear dresses in the same color as the wedding party. I’ll give them corsages and name them in the program. I’ll have the ushers walk them up to sit in the front. Also they can take part in any of the bridal party things they are able.
Post # 11
How is it a problem to let groomsmen escort a 15YO up the aisle? What is going to happen at the wedding?
Post # 12
I don’t think anything would happen I only stated it would be awkard. My choosing for them not to be bridesmaids had many factors that being only one. I just feel that they are a little young to take on the role.
Post # 13
I chose my sister, cousins and best friend. They ranged in age from 17 to 35. The groomsmen ranged in age from 30 to 47. We had a groomswoman and the two sides were uneven in number (5 women on my side, 3 men and a woman on his side). There was nothing awkward or weird about it.
My cousins didn’t do any of the planning or other BM “duties” (sister and best friend maids of honor did, plus my mom and other friends) but they showed up and supported me and the wedding went off without a hitch. They were exicted to be a part of my day and I am glad to have shared it with them.
Post # 14
You can easily have them as junior bridesmaids, and not have them at bachelorette party. That you dont wan them to stand up front will say to people, “I care more about matchy-matchy appearances than I love my sisters.”
Post # 15
Just make them bridesmaids. Not honorary bridesmaids. Not junior bridesmaids. Not pretend bridesmaids. Real bridesmaids.
Clearly you can’t have them going to a wild bachelorette party and so you have two choices.
1. A toned down bachelorette party where you can invite your sisters.
2. A more adult bachelorette party on one date for you and the other bridesmaids and a special ‘just the three of you” sisterette party on another date.
Make the sisterette party special. Get dressed up. Go and see a film. Eat at a nice restaurant. When you go home open a small bottle of champagne and each have a glass.
This could start a family tradition. Just think what will happen when your sisters in turn get married. They may want you to be their bridesmaid or MOH, and they too might want a sisterette party as well as a bachelorette party..
So, think outside the box. Friends may come and go but loving sisters you will always have with you.