(Closed) Difficult Bridesmaid Dilemma. help!

posted 7 years ago in Bridesmaids
Post # 61
220 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

This is why, in the UK, we pay for all our bridesmaids dresses. Do I think $150 is a good price for a bridesmaids outfit? Sure. But scruitinising the expenditure of a close friend in relation to what you *think* they can afford and what you *think* their priorities should be just makes you look cheap.

Post # 62
284 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: February 2016

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xxmegbugxx:  In response to your reply to me, I understand that your feelings are hurt that she is not making your wedding a priority. She must also be feeling that same way. In your original post you stated:

If guess my question is, am I asking them to pay too much, or is she being super stubborn? Should I tell her not to be in my wedding or try to work something out where she can pay me back?

I’m not trying to make it seem as though you are complaining, I simply mean to answer your question: You aren’t necessarily asking them to pay too much, it really depends on your area and circle of friends. I don’t think she is being stubborn, but conscience of her budget. I’m not one to kick people out of weddings.. and I think you should try to work something out where she can pay you back.


Post # 63
163 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: May 2016

I don’t get it. I know she’s your best friend and all, but do you only support her because you can hang it over her head later? We brides can get so caught up in planning the perfect day we can sometimes forget that we are the only ones that care that much.

 Even to our nearest and dearest, our big day is one day out of many on their calendar. It will never have the same significance for them as it does for us. And that’s absolutely fine.

 You can’t assume, ever, how much is ok for another person to spend. Maybe its different in the UK, but we pay for our bridesmaids dresses and accessories. Its my big day so its my expense, is the general consensus on this side of the pond.

 She has every right to put her trips first, as everyone has said, its for school and even if it wasn’t she decides what she does with her life. 

 Try not to take it as a reflection on how she sees you, and maybe you could try to adjust your budget to help her to pay for her dresses and stuff.

  • This reply was modified 6 years, 8 months ago by MrsAK14.
Post # 64
924 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 2018

There’s some pretty harsh comments about you being unreasonable circulating here, which I think are unfair… 

my two cents.. no you are not asking too much. When she accepted responsibilities as a bridesmaid (having done it before) she knew what she was in for. Even weddings where I’ve had my dress, hair and makeup paid for, there were still costs. She shouldn’t have said yes.

HOWEVER. if you’ve known her for 20 years, she probably felt like she couldn’t say no (even with her budget constraints). You probably used to talk when you were 8 about how one day “when you were in each others weddings” and now that day is here, but she’s an adult with other priorities.

She probably doesn’t want to accept your help because she feels guilty about letting you down. And frankly, some of your upsetness about her trips is probably stemming from 20 years of picturing her there with you.

Help her with her costs but be understanding if she really can’t do it and make her a part of the day in some other way (have her do a reading etc.) At the end of the day, you really only need two people up there, you and your Fiance.

Post # 65
97 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

I think as a bride, it’s easy to get caught up in our own wedding planning and forget about other people have going on in their lives. On that same note, you’re not forcing anyone to be a bridesmaid. It’s no secret that being a bridesmaid costs $$$, and honestly $150 is very reasonable so if she can’t afford that then I would have a heart-to-heart with her and let her know that if she can’t afford to be in the wedding that she should probably just come as a guest.

I don’t think it’s fair for brides to feel bad about wanting their bridal party to look a certain way, it’s your day. You could always try asking her what she would be able to afford for a dress, and then maybe offer to pay the rest as her “bridesmaid gift”. Just a thought!

Post # 67
999 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: March 2016

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xxmegbugxx:  I’m sorry if my previous post came off as a little harsh. I do understand how you feel and it’s a crappy situation to be in. A few months ago I made a thread with almost the exact same title. I had a similar situation in which I wanted to pick my 3 best friends from school as my bridesmaids but one of them is unreliable and a total flake. I had a feeling that if I had my flaky friend as a bridesmaid she would just let me down and I didn’t want to put that stress on our friendship. I couldn’t ask my other friends and not her, so I eneded up asking my sister and 2 brothers to do it instead. This way I’m setting my friendship up for success by not having too many expectations of her for my wedding. You need to find the middle ground between what’s reasonable for you to expect out of your girls while not taking away an unreasonable amount of their time, money, and sanity.

The Bees can be really militant when it comes to too many expectations for BMs, but they do make some valid points. Like they always say, you can’t expect others to care as much about your wedding as you do. I think it would be unreasonable to expect your friend to miss out on educational advancing opportunities because you think she has to spend her money on an outfit she’s going to wear for just one day instead. $150 isn’t a whole lot, but it’s also not nothing, especially with all of the other expenses added on top of it. You said that it wouldn’t feel right in your heart to ask her to step down as a Bridesmaid or Best Man, so it sounds like you need to come to a compromise about what you expect from her, as well as the rest of the BMs. No, it’s not fair to have her be the only exception, but I’m sure the other BMs would be happy to benefit from a few additional costs being cut too! I know your wedding vision is important to you, but when you look back on the memories and photos, will you really care what those girls are wearing, whether they match exactly, etc? I doubt it! I think the real issue is that you feel like your friend isn’t making being a Bridesmaid or Best Man a priority or respecting your wishes.

Bottom line, IMO, you need to relax the dress code by either (1) finding cheaper outfits, (2) letting the BMs mix and match with something already in their closet, or (3) paying for a chunk of all of the girls outfits with no expectation of them having to pay you back. But, you also really need to just have an honest conversation with her about what you expect from her as a Bridesmaid or Best Man and get her feedback on whether or not she finds that reasonable.

Let us know what happens, and best of luck!

Post # 68
509 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

I don’t think you are necessarily wrong, but friendships are more important than money and if $150 is standing in the way between you having your best friend up there with you, then I think it’s right to pay it.  Don’t wory about the other ladies – they don’t have to know. 

Some people just don’t care about other people’s weddings very much, even close friends.  I’m one of those.  When my good friends get married, I am happy for them but I don’t necessarily like going to weddings.  I still go but I don’t like having to buy a new outfit, traveling, eating the requisite pasta vegetarian entree.  I don’t drink much, not a dancer.  Weddings just aren’t how I would ideally spend my weekends or my money.  I would never say anything to them about it but weddings aren’t a priority in my life.  The friendship is but the wedding is just a party to me. 

But I remember planning my own wedding and being confused why no one else seemed to care or wanted to talk about it 24/7 like I did.  🙂  It’s very easy to be sucked into it being the most important day ever and feeling hurt when no one else seems to care as much. 

Just try not to let her excitement, or lack thereof, be a reflection of the friendship.  Someone can absolutely value a friendship without caring much about the wedding. 

Post # 69
2125 posts
Buzzing bee

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xxmegbugxx:  Hi OP. I’m a little confused now that I’ve read through all of the posts. In the beginning of this thread you spoke a lot about the finances – you were upset that she wouldn’t spend $150 on dress/accessories/jacket. Now you seem to be saying that she’s not excited about your wedding. I’m not seeing the connection??

Are you saying that she’s not excited about your wedding because she doesn’t want to spend the money on the dress and jacket? That does seem like you’re placing a monetary value on her friendship. “If she was excited for me, she would spend this money.”

That’s just not the case. She can love you, value your friendship, be extremely excited for you, and still not want to spend $150 on your wedding on top of her educational and other priorities.

She’s told you up front and with plenty of time to spare that she can’t afford to be in the wedding. It’s your job to decide whether you want to pay for her to be there, or whether you would prefer her to be a guest because YOU can’t afford it either. But there’s nothing wrong with her telling you honestly that she can’t afford it.

And regarding the bachelorette party – NO one is required to “chip in” for your bachelorette party. In fact, you’re not guarenteed a party at all! If your friends want to be nice enough to throw you a party, great. Even in that case, I don’t think you should go into it with the expectation that it won’t cost you anything. Even at your own bachelorette, it’s not your friends’ reponsibility to pay for you. Sweet and nice and wonderful if they do – but NOT their job or responsibility.


Post # 71
2125 posts
Buzzing bee

View original reply
xxmegbugxx:  Thanks for your reply. 🙂 Yes, I think that $150 is too much to ask a bridesmaid to spend on a dress if you haven’t gotten buy-in from her regarding that amount first. If she says up front that she can spend $150, then that’s a totally different story.

I can understand why you would be hurt that your oldest friend isn’t more excited about your wedding. I would be hurt too. But unfortunately no one is ever going to be as excited about our weddings as we are. :/

I think you should seperate your hurt that she’s not more excited about your wedding from her inability (or lack of desire) to pay for all the extras that come along with being a bridesmaid. Planning weddings, just like buying houses, tends to skew our views of money temporarily. Whereas most of us would scoff at the idea of spending $1000 on a dress, for example, call it a WEDDING dress and all of a sudden we think that’s pretty reasonable. I think we all have to be careful not to project that onto other people. It may seem like $150 isn’t a ton of money to spend on your wedding, but for someone NOT in the wedding haze, a $150 dress is pretty darn expensive!

As for the bachelorette party – each person has their own thoughts and feelings about the etiquette of bachelorette parties, bridal showers, etc. Personally, I would plan to pay ALL of my expenses myself. If someone offers to pay for me – great! If not, I’ve already planned to pay for myself. Asking everyone to chip in doesn’t mean they’ll say yes, and I wouldn’t plan on even SOME of my expenses being covered (they probably will be, but I wouldn’t plan on it).

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