Post # 1
So I’m in sort of a similar situation to the bride who had the "Bad Bad Bridesmaids" post. Here’s the background – sorry if this is long! I have one bridesmaid who has had issues throughout my wedding planning. I won’t go into everything but there have been previous issues here and there. Also, I truly feel that we just aren’t as close as we used to be and I feel that I may have made a mistake in asking her.
A couple of weeks ago my bridesmaid told me that she most likely can’t come to the rehearsal or rehearsal dinner on Friday and that she will be driving up the morning of the wedding and then leaving at the reception to drive back home. The reason: she has a "work conference" that is the weekend of my wedding. I had prepared myself for this because my Maid/Matron of Honor called me and told me she had talked with the bridesmaid who had told her she may not be coming to the wedding AT ALL anymore. But anyways, maybe I’m crazy but seriously, what work conferences fall on a weekend? She told me that her boss was "nice enough" to excuse her for my wedding on Saturday though. This just makes me so upset. I don’t believe her. 1) She has been at this new job for about 5 months. I figured she would have some leeway at this point. I honestly don’t quite believe that she actually even has a conference. 2) I’m shocked that her boss wouldn’t let her have that time off knowing that she is a bridesmaid and made this commitment a year ago. 3) I know in actuality it has everything to do with her boyfriend. Background: she cheated on her boyfriend with one of our groomsmen 2 years ago and is paranoid that someone will say something in front of her boyfriend. Also, she has been telling my other bridesmaids that her boyfriend is going to be bored at our wedding (we all went to school together by the way).
On top of this she is saying that she’s not going to know for sure whether or not she’ll be able to come to the rehearsal and dinner for at least a few weeks because her boss "doesn’t know the details". This is ridiculous and it is stressing me out. I have handled it with understanding and initially told her that we would figure it out. I also suggested that if she knows she can’t be there for the whole weekend and participate that I would still love it if she came as a guest and would understand if she would want to step down. That way she and her boyfriend didn’t have to be apart and she wouldn’t be stressed out about getting up there and I wouldn’t be stressed out wondering where she was. Also, she could drive up with her boyfriend the morning of and then leave the reception together after as well.
I just find this situation to be terribly annoying and rude. I wasn’t going to ask her to step down before but now I’m seriously considering it. We’re getting closer to the wedding and she’s not giving me any information to go on. I’m getting stressed out. I don’t want to be worrying the day of the wedding whether she knows what she’s supposed to do at the ceremony and if she’s going to even get there on time in the morning. Part of me feels badly because yes I know that she could still actually be in the wedding but I’m fed up with her, her unwillingness and inability to let me know what’s going on, her immaturity with the way she is handling the situation with her boyfriend. I feel that she is backing me into a wall and is pushing me to the point of being the bad guy and kicking her out. A part of me really thinks that she doesn’t want to be in the wedding (another bridesmaid confirmed this) but she won’t just tell me that because she doesn’t want me to think she’s a b*tch. It would be so much easier if she were just honest!
I hope this doesn’t sound so demanding of me but I just envisioned that my bridesmaids would share this weekend (Friday and Saturday) with me. I realize this is MY wedding and I care about it more than anyone but if I were a bridesmaid I just couldn’t imagine putting anyone in this position. In addition, I just don’t feel comfortable giving her the same recognition as the other girls. This bridesmaid never calls me, every time I’ve tried to make plans with her in the past year she has cancelled, and, this probably sounds lame, but really, I don’t want to give her the same gifts as my other bridesmaids who have done so much. That might be mean of me though. I just don’t think it’s fair that the other girls do all of these other things and then she can just show up the day of without helping at all. Obviously I don’t think she’s a slave or anything but seriously she has never offered to help at all.
I don’t know if any of this made any sense and I’m hoping no one is going to think I’m a bridezilla (I hate that word!). But I would love some advice as to what you other brides would do – would you ask her to just come as a guest or would you keep her as a bridesmaid? Am I in the wrong?
Post # 3
I would just ask her to come as a guest. It’s one thing to have conflicts – my Maid/Matron of Honor had a few, but we worked them all out. It’s another thing to be withholding information, or just not working towards a solution, which it sounds like is the case.
You’re going to have enough things to worry about right before the wedding. Part of the point of having bridesmaids is that they help take care of stuff – and of you. If one of them is actually additional stress, that’s just crazy, and completely not what you need.
If you were super close to her – for instance, if she was your sister, or absolutely your best friend – then it might make sense to adjust your plans to accomodate her issues. And it really just sounds like your wedding is not that important to her – she’s reduced it to some kind of photo opp, where she appears in time to stand up at the front of the church in a matching dress with a bouquet, and leaves as soon as you cut the cake. If that’s the case, why in the world would you want her standing up with your?
Of course, you probably don’t want to have that conversation with her. I would just tell her that it sounds like things are really complicated for her at the moment with her new job, her schedule seems crazy, and given all that it seems to you that expecting her to fulfill the responsibilities of a bridesmaid is really unfair. Tell her that, given that the time commitment she can make doesn’t allow her any extra time up front, and doesn’t even allow her to stay through the reception, it would be better (and less stressful all around) if she just came as a guest.
It doesn’t make you bridezilla, as long as you do it nicely. If you let this situation go on until she really pisses you off, and you end up screaming at her, THAT makes you bridezilla. I would go ahead and do it now.
Post # 4
I agree with suzanno, but how I think it depends on how close you are to your wedding date. Is the dress already ordered? You might have to try to work it out if she’s already invested some money. If you think it’s ok to let her go, then try to make it seem more like a discussion and a mutual decision. Good luck!! 🙂
Post # 5
Darn it just had a response and something happened to it.
Suzanno – thank you for your advice. I agree with you and do appreciate it. She isn’t a sister or even a best friend. She once was a good friend but at this point we don’t have much of a relationship except that she’s in my wedding.
proBM2008 – I’m 8 weeks out from my wedding. She did already purchase the dress. I’ve thought about what would happen if I asked her to step down. I don’t want to have to pay her for the dress because part of me feels like she put herself in this situation but I would definitely offer help on how to get her reimbursed – by way of ebay or this site, etc. I don’t even think she cares about the money at this point though. She was supposed to rent a house with two of my other bridesmaids and their SO’s. She called one of my bridesmaids and told her that she would still pay for her portion. It’s nice but at the same time it’s totally odd because they would have no problem finding another couple to take her and her bf’s place.
Post # 6
First off, depending on what kind of job she has, weekend conferences are very typical. My husband is an attorney and he travels to meetings on the weekends all the time, because lawyers are typically too busy to be away from the office on the weekdays. We’re leaving for NYC on Wednesday to attend a meeting that is Friday-Monday. Also, 5 months at a new job isn’t very much time at all and in today’s economy, people are having a hard time finding jobs, so I would imagine she doesn’t want to lose the one she has. If it’s really about her boyfriend, then that’s a different issue, but if it’s about her job, I would give her a break.
Post # 7
I have weekend work conferences all the time – in fact, nearly every conference I attend are over weekends. And I also often don’t get a choice in whether or not I go; my boss tells me I’m going. You may want to give her a break. Especially if she’s already had to buy a dress. My Maid/Matron of Honor missed our rehearsal dinner because of traffic (yes, she was literally caught in an extra 3 hours of traffic!), but it was fine! She was still there for my wedding, all smiles. I was just happy to have her there. There’s probably a reason you asked your friend to be your bridesmaid in the first place. Let it slide, and be happy that she’ll be there with you for as long as she can. It’s not like "demoting" her to being a guest will allow her to spend more time with you, so it’s kind of a moot point.
Post # 8
I also have work conferences all the time. They stink! I’ve had to miss weddings for them as well, and I’ve been at my new job for two years. So many people are willing to take your job if you aren’t doing what your boss asks, you have to be careful these days. My boss could not care less about weddings. If it’s not my wedding, to my boss, it’s not important (and since I’m taking a couple weeks off for my honeymoon I can’t argue!).