(Closed) Decline being a bridesmaid

posted 3 years ago in Bridesmaids
Post # 2
Member
4055 posts
Honey bee

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msblondiee : I’ve never had to decline being a BM; however, I would just be honest. “I would love to attend your wedding as a guest and even contribute in another way, such as doing a reading, if you’d like me to. However, because I financially cannot afford to, I can’t be a Bridesmaid or Best Man for your wedding. I hope you understand”

ETA – maybe once you mention that it’s a financial issue, she’ll offer to cover the cost of your attire. And if you’re upfront about not being able to host a shower, bachelorette, etc, and she’s ok with that, then maybe you could be a Bridesmaid or Best Man for her after all 🙂

Post # 3
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11376 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2015

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msblondiee :  I’d tell her how honored you are to be asked, but that you’re concerned you couldn’t be the bridesmaid she deserves, and would she understand if you supported her in another way?

I’m not sure I would being up the money esp right out of the gate, plus I got the feeling that might not be your only reason-  but if it’s just money you might mention it if she asks. 

Post # 4
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3356 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

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msblondiee :  you say you just had your wedding: was this girl a bridesmaid for you? While everyone will say “weddings aren’t tit for tat”, it would seem rather like a one-sided friendship if she had just been a bridesmaid for you and then you decline doing so for her. In that case – I don’t know if there is anyway you can decline politely and not have her upset. 

But if she wasn’t one of your bridesmaids, you should be able to decline without a problem – just tell her that you’re so honored to be asked to be included in her day, but right now you don’t have the time or finances to participate as much as she deserves, but you’d look forward to attending as a guest. 

Post # 5
Member
507 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

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msblondiee : Tell her as soon as possible, and offer to help in any way you want.

Being a Bridesmaid or Best Man is exhausting, time consuming, and expensive.

I got married last year, and I’m a Bridesmaid or Best Man this year! Just be honest with her, she should understand.

Weddings are a lot of work and to expect someone who just got married to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man is risky (on the bride’s part).

Post # 6
Member
2731 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2017

I’ve declined before. It did hurt the bride’s feelings. So then the next time, I wanted to decline, this time for money reasons, but I didn’t. I told my bff, who had me as the Maid/Matron of Honor in duties but her sister as Maid/Matron of Honor in title, that I wouldn’t be able to do all I that I wanted to because of my work schedule and finances. She was fine with it, and still wanted me to be a bridesmaid. 

I would be honest, if you’re close with this person, about why you don’t feel able to be a bridesmaid. If you’re not that close to her, just decline and tell her you’re not able to take on that responsibility so close after your own wedding she to finances. People understand finances. 

Post # 7
Member
271 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

I have declined before after accepting initially. I was asked to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man on the same night that I was engaged and I was just so excited about everything that I said yes without thinking about the implications. Now that I think back it was an inappropriate time and place for her to ask me to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man (we were all out and DH had literally just popped the question with all of my friends around). We had a shorter than average engagement and I was planning everything, and my wedding was before hers. Within a few weeks she was sending emails to plan a beach trip, girls night, sleepover planning sessions, dress shopping trips, etc. I didn’t have time or money to spend on her wedding and after ignoring several emails I got my courage together and told her nicely that I didn’t have the finances or time she deserved with planning my own wedding and buying a house. 

She understood and I’m not sure if it affected our friendship. We weren’t super close before so I was surprised she asked me to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man in the first place. 

Declining was the best thing I could have done. A lot of her pre-wedding celebrations conflicted with mine, our shower was on the same day and friends had to dart from hers to mine. I didn’t mind and I’m sure if I was a Bridesmaid or Best Man that wouldn’t have happened, but I wanted to spend time enjoying my engagement and not have to worry about hers as much…

if we were closer or family I would have remained as a Bridesmaid or Best Man. 

Post # 8
Member
2876 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

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msblondiee :  I’ve declined being a Bridesmaid or Best Man before.  In my case, it was one of my sorority sisters from college.  She lived out of state and I had recently started a new job and moved so financially I wasn’t in the best spot.  Plus, being a new employee I wasn’t able to get the time off of work I would have needed for all the pre wedding festivities.  I thought she would understand but she was pretty upset, as I found out later she had asked me over a cousin, then when she went to ask the cousin, the cousin felt like plan B.  I was surprised at how much it affected our friendship.  I was invited to the wedding but she was distant toward me after that and eventually we lost touch.

So I guess what I’m trying to say is be honest.  I think financial reasons are a big reason, and a legitimate reason, to decline.  However, one shouldn’t use that as just an excuse.  Is it you truly don’t have the money to be a bridesmaid, or really don’t want to spend it?  Only you can decide that.

Post # 9
Member
5627 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: July 2018

This thread is depressing, I’m so glad it’s only a US thing to attach so many financial strings to bring a bridesmaid.  I would be so sad if anyone declined when I asked them to be a Bridesmaid or Best Man.

Post # 10
Member
1127 posts
Bumble bee

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zzar45 :  I’m curious- how is it different outside of the US?  

Post # 11
Member
3883 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: April 2017 - City, State

I was a bridesmaids once. It was fine, but I have no desire to do it again and would decline every offer to be a bridesmaids outside of if my sisters asked me. My stance is not a mystery to my friends so hopefully none of them would ask, but if they did, I’d simply say that while I was honored to be asked, I’m not available to fill the role. Much like attending a wedding, being in a wedding party is not an obligation.

Post # 12
Member
507 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

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megrays :  I’m eager to see her response as well.

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zzar45 :  Please elaborate (not trying to be snarky).

Post # 13
Member
567 posts
Busy bee

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southernbride16 :  
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megrays :  I think in many other countries bridesmaids aren’t financially burdered to stand up in a wedding. Brides pay for attire, hair etc for their girls. So I think what she means is that it’s sad people have to decline because of finances

Post # 14
Member
507 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

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djbeats :  Oh ok, that makes sense! Thanks for the clarification.

Post # 15
Member
754 posts
Busy bee

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southernbride16 :  

In the UK for instance, the bride and groom foot the bill for all the wedding party expenses- clothes, hair/ makeup, often accommodation.

We also don’t have showers and our hen parties tend to be smaller scale and everyone Inc. Bride pays their way. 

Generally speaking, it’s not a financial burden at all to be a bridesmaid.

 

ETA- also our wedding parties are usually smaller. Maybe a couple of bridesmaids and groomsmen

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 5 months ago by  pond.

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