(Closed) Bridesmaids bust!!! Totally bummed help!

posted 10 years ago in Bridesmaids
Post # 3
6391 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2011

I’m sorry you’re having such a difficult time with this :(. The truth is, though, that they would still have to pay about $300 for the hotel (I looked at your old post), and that’s hard for a lot of people. I know I couldn’t swing it. In addition to that, they would have to take time off of work, which would mean that they would be losing even more money. I doubt they’re not attending because they don’t love you; I’m guessing it’s just too much money.

Post # 4
10283 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

I’m sorry this is happening to you but you need to see where your friends are coming from. While they shouldn’t have agreed to go in the first place if they weren’t planning on following through, destination weddings are a burden on the guests. You may be offering to pay for their airfare but there are still ALOT of other aspects that they will have to cover on their own dime. Aside from the obvious (accommodations, food, entertainment, etc…) they will have to take time off of work, purchase a new wardrobe, make arrangements for furbabies, get passports, etc. It adds up very quickly. 

Fiance and I were originally planning a destination wedding. After getting some less than stellar reactions from my family we decided to forego our plans and get married here. I know this doesn’t help your situation but for us, deciding to have our wedding here was the best decision we could have made (and we’re still honeymooning in Bermuda).

This isn’t meant to sound snarky but as for this statement, “Nobody will ever get to Aruba cheaper than what I’ve made it for them”, did you ever think that they don’t have a desire to go to Aruba? I only say that because the same point was made to me with our Bermuda wedding. I made a similar comment to my friends and family about “never getting the opportunity to visit Bermuda again” (a bit dramatic but I was trying to make a point). My mother knocked me down a peg and said that she and my father never had a desire to visit Bermuda. So the fact that I was asking them to spend their hard earned money on a destination that they never wanted to visit anyway, was a reality check for me. While you may think Aruba is paradise and there isn’t a person on the planet who wouldn’t want to go there, I can assure you thats not the case. 

Your wedding is in 3 months so you’re obviously not going to change your plans now (atleast I would hope you don’t). Continue to plan your wedding the way you have been and have the best time possible. Also, don’t ruin your friendship with your ex bridesmaids because they bailed. I’m sure they all have a good reason. DW’s are very expensive and its not right to assume that they would want to spend a great deal of time and money on your wedding. 

Good luck with everything. I’m sure your Aruba wedding will be awesome!

Post # 5
6659 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2010

If this is still what you dream of for your wedding, then go for it. I promise it will still be just as magical and exciting and wonderful, even if you don’t have a lot of guests compared to your husband. Weddings for better or worse show you who your true friends are, if the guests who don’t choose to attend your wedding in an alternate universe attended your local wedding they would have done something else to disappoint you. 

All that matters is what you said above, that you are marrying the man of your dreams, your best friend. Less people is more of a bonus than you think you can focus more of your attention on him and it will be overall less stressful. If this is what you want then just go with it, hope that more of your loved ones will change thier minds and attend but don’t be disappointed if they dont.

Post # 6
218 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

Keep your head up, the most important thing is that you and your honey are going to marry each other. I’m sure they all care and still love you even if things have changed and they can’t be there physically. Financially alot of people are set back these days. I think you’ll still have a great day…its a destination wedding.

Good Luck and happy New Year Laughing

Post # 7
47445 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

Is your Fiance from Aruba?

If so, then it will be perfectly understandable to all attending why your family and friends weren’t able to attend. I’m sure their intentions were honorable when they said they would attend, but the reality is you are asking them to cross the world for your wedding, and being younger adults, life got in the way of their plans.

This could be an opportunity in disguise. Have you considered asking your mom to be your attendant?

Post # 8
967 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2008

I think that, for the majority of people, this is something that’s faced when you have a destination wedding in a resort area like Aruba.  It’s not that your friends don’t like you or care about you … they just cannot afford that expense.  And, what might’ve happened to some of these people in a year that they couldn’t afford to go?  Car repairs, medical bills, broken furnaces, etc. can all eat at money set aside for your wedding.

To be quite honest with you, even though they had a year to save, why do you think they should save for your wedding?  I certainly have a lot of other expenses in my life and my friend’s destination wedding would be the last thing I’d be saving up for.  Plus, your friends will have to take vacation time off of work to attend your wedding.  Maybe they don’t want to use their vacation time for your wedding or their vacation money to travel to your destination.  Maybe they want to spend their money and take their vacation where they want to take it?  

If you want people at your wedding and to participate, then you need to really consider having a local ceremony where it can be affordable for your friends to attend.  Travel expenses to a tropical destination far from home, in this economy, can be very difficult for some.  While you’ve told some you’d generously provide airfare, there’s still a hotel to pay for.  And, let’s face it … there aren’t any Red Roof Inn cheapie deals in Aruba.  They’re going to have to shell out a lot of money for a resort room.  And, if everyone’s going to Aruba, it’s not like they can go, spend the night, and head back home.  Going to a tropical destination like that is a week’s vacation. 

Let’s face it, your Aruba wedding would be considered their vacation.  I don’t know anyone who wants to be told where they have to vacation. 

My friends went through the same thing you did and wound up cancelling their Mexican Riviera destination wedding so that they could have guests at their wedding.  Everyone was excited at first and then, when the numbers came down, the expenses (airfare, hotel, wedding clothes, etc.), nobody could afford it for more than an overnight.  And, as I mentioned before, people were saying that if they were going, they’d have to do it as their vacation and that location was a spot that they had zero interest in vacationing at. 

I think that, it’s not that your friends don’t love you or dont’ want to be there for you.  I think it’s the fact that, in this economy, it’s unaffordable and money that they probably feel could be better spent elsewhere.  I would bet that they’re looking at that money and thinking of the other things that they could be doing with it. 

I hate to say it, but if one of my friends invited me to stand up in her destination wedding, I’d be saying no, too.  Not that I don’t love my friends and not that I wouldn’t want to be there but that there’s a lot more sensible ways for me to spend my money and someone’s destination wedding is not one of them.  If I can drive to the destination wedding, get a cheapie place to stay and can get home the next day, then I’d attend.  But to have to take a chunk of vacation time on a vacation I wouldn’t otherwise choose to take … forget it.


Post # 9
514 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2011

It’s really about the 2 of you getting married and when you stand up there, it should just feel like it’s the 2 of you. Don’t focus on who is watching and which side they are on.

Post # 11
10283 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011

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@graciousbride: Few things…

As far as their affordability I know them well enough they could if they wanted to: You may think you know all there is to know about your friends finances but I would bet you don’t. I’ve been best friends (like sisters) will my 3 best friends for more than 15 years and while I think I know what their financial situation is like, I’m sure I don’t know all of the details. 

I would like to know who has spent less than $400 when being a part of even a local wedding?: I have spent more than $1000 on each of the weddings that I have been in but all I am asking from my girls is for them to pay for their dresses and shoes (less than $150). While some could easily afford more, I refuse to ask my girls to invest their hard earned money into my wedding (as a side note, they didn’t ask me to spend as much money as I did. I choose to spend more than the other bridesmaids because I’m fortunate enough to HAVE more). I, too, am requesting that they do not give me any gifts for my local, at home wedding. As for shower/bachelorette parties, if they choose to throw me a bachelorette party then thats on them but I’m certainly not asking for one and my family is paying for my bridal shower. While your logic may work for some people, it doesn’t work for everyone. 

And you know what if you simply won’t spend a fraction of what you expect from other people when it was their time…. than what kind of friend are you: It may not have anything to do with the money spent but more than TIME invested. Myself as well as a few other PP’s have mentioned that DW’s require guests to take time out of their own lives to attend. If they choose to travel with you then thats awesome but its selfish to complain about them not attending when your asking your guests to travel extreme distances. I work my ass off all year long for those 3 weeks off and you best believe that I already have all of that time planned out before I even bank them. 

Like Bandit said, anything can happen in a year that would affect your friends ability to travel to your Destination Wedding. The fact that they aren’t there shouldn’t change the fact that you’re marrying the man you love in the location of your dreams. 

Post # 12
610 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

View original reply
@graciousbride: I can see how you would be hurt about her not being upfront about her not attending. It does seem like you have tried to accommodate them by taking care of most of the costs, and foregoing most of the bridal events (bachelorette party, shower etc) Maybe have a heart to heart with her and find out the reason she’s not attending.

I also understand how hard it is when you’ve put a lot of time, money, and effort into someone else’s wedding to make it special and memorable. I think you just have to remember, that you did all those things because you wanted to do it for them, and while it seems like it should be reciprocated, some people just won’t. 


Hope it all works out!

Post # 13
9050 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2010

I’m sorry this is happening to you, but I can see how things could kind of get away from people.

I think it’s hard to say no to an excited bride.  My husband’s sister just announced her destination wedding (Sept in Maui) at Christmas, and it was seriously awkward to be like… uh, yeah we don’t really know how we’re going to afford/get time off/plan our move and TTC schedule around that.  It would have felt so much better in the moment to just be excited with her and procrastinate disappointing her.  So I can definitely see how your friends might have wanted to keep it a “yes” as long as possible, hoping it would work out, even though the results were less than favourable. 

Post # 16
464 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2011

I’m sorry but I think you are reading too much into their decisions to not attend. I think it’s really sad that you are willing to reconsider your friendships and see this as a “sign” simply because they told you they can’t afford to attend your wedding, one that you say you realized many people wouldn’t be able to attend due to costs. Are you then considering every person who RSVP’ed with a no as someone who doesn’t deserve to be your friend?

I completely understand being bummed and upset and there is nothing wrong with that. However, I don’t think it’s fair to your friends that you are saying they suck and aren’t worth the energy because they can’t afford to attend your wedding. It’s very generous of you to offer to pay their airfare but a week long vacation still requires a ton of other expenses (which have been listed a few times above) and while it would be amazing if they could afford those, it isn’t up to you to decide what they spend their money on. I’m sure they were really excited and readily agreed to be part of the wedding, but unfortunately as they began to count up costs realized it wasn’t a financially responsible decision for them to attend. It sucks and it sucks they realized this later on, but I really think you need to seperate that disappointment from how you view your entire friendships with them. It’s great that you have been doing so much for these friends, but I think this is one situation where it isn’t fair to compare what you’ve done to what they’ve done as this is a huge expense for someone and not something that you should be judging them for.

I’m sorry you are in this situation and you have every right to be bummed and vent, but I just hope that you can try to be a bit easier on your friends as I’m sure they would have loved to attend and are also disappointed that they won’t be there. I’m sure that when you actually get there you will be so excited about marrying your Fiance and enjoying the moment that you won’t have time to be bummed. Everyone around you will be so happy for you and hopefully their love for both of you will ensure that you have a fantastic wedding! Good luck!

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