Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Single Girl’s Survival Guide: When Bridesmaids Can Say ‘No’ to a Bride(zilla)

(Recent bridesmaid duty in an adorable robe from the non-bridezilla bride)

A 4am wakeup for hair appointments on the big day, slow dancing with her creepy older brother and wearing a vomit green ball gown are all wedding situations you’ve got to get through with a big smile and a closed mouth. But, there are some situation that even the nicest bridesmaid shouldn’t grin and bear it for. When it comes to emptying your bank account or changing your personal routine, a bridesmaid can absolutely say ‘no’ to a bridezilla.

Enrolling in a mandatory diet or fitness plan. Sure, we all want to look our best when getting fitted for (read: stuffed into) a bridesmaid dress, but being told by the bride that you need to drop a few pounds (or can’t plan to have your first baby) before her big day is outrageous. The bride can live on protein shakes for the next six months, but her bridal party has their own lives and individual lifestyles. If you want to get toned before her big day, go ahead and adjust your normal eating habits and gym schedule. But, if a change in your lifestyle comes from a rude suggestion – or worse an order – from the bride, you need to establish what you are and are not willing to do when you agree to be a bridesmaid. While you can’t say, “I refuse to wear orange", you can be assertive about your own body, such as "I'm trying to get pregnant, and I'm not putting that off for the sake of your wedding album."

Purchasing a designer (read: over $500) bridesmaid gown. Thank God for David’s Bridal. For those of us who’ve been in more than 5 weddings, we can appreciate a $99 dress. Whether it’s on clearance or goes for $800 at a boutique in Soho, a bridesmaid dress is a bridesmaid dress. They really do all look the same. Tacky fabric, unflattering silhouettes and awkward lengths make almost every bridesmaid dress a runway no-no. There's maybe a 10 percent chance you will like the dress you end up walking down the aisle in, but you’ll have to let go of your personal style for the day. When it comes to the issue of the price tag, the bridesmaids must be considered. Let the bride know you’re excited to stand up for her, but when it comes to the dress, alterations and shoes, you’d like to stay within a reasonable budget.

Flying off to an exotic bachelorette getaway. Flight, hotel, car rental, dinners, cocktails, new bathing suits… Expecting bridesmaids to dish out a month’s rent to celebrate one of the bride’s last weekends as a single lady sounds fun in theory, but may actually put her friends in debt with their landlord. Don’t be afraid to be upfront with the bride or maid-of-honor when the bachelorette party is being planned. It’s more than okay to say ‘no’ to a full blown vacation. A more reasonable weekend away in the Hamptons or Atlantic City may still seem pricey, but at least there’s no airplane ticket involved!

Attending more than one bridal shower. If the bride and groom met in New York City, but grew up on opposite sides of the country, both the mother of the bride and her future mother-in-law may be planning showers for the women on their sides of the family. Be prepared to attend – and assist – at the bridal shower closest to where you live, but don’t sacrifice money and time to travel to a second shower, just to keep the bride in your good graces. Let her know that while you’ll be jotting down gifts, hosting bridal bingo and creating a festive bouquet out of ribbon and bows, your work schedule only allows for one weekend of bridal shower fun.

When do you think it's acceptable to say 'no' to a bride?

1 comment:

  1. I think a bridesmaid should be able to say NO to anything that they want. I think what most bridezillas forget is you are asking your BEST friends to stand up with you on your day. Bridesmaids are some of the most important people in their lives. They aren't a bride's slaves, and a bride has no right to ask them to do stupid things like lose weight or hold off on having a baby! These are people you love and care about and who have stood by you through the good and bad times! The bride should be grateful she has these lovely ladies to support and love her on her wedding day. I was so overwhelmed on my wedding day that without my lovely best friends to take care of me and to tell me what to do and guide me, I would've been lost!


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