Being a bridesmaid isn’t always an easy thing. There are so many different things you have to think and worry about. There are parties, dresses, preparation … and the list goes on. To top it off, many friendships are ruined in the process because of misunderstandings, stress, and nervousness. Here are three pieces of advice that will get you through any wedding, no matter the circumstances, and keep your friendship in tact.
- Don’t complain about the cost of the dress to the bride. Hopefully the bride will be considerate in choosing her gown. If not, and the money is an issue, broach it carefully with the bride, but only as a last measure. You need to understand that this is just a cost you are going to have to suck up. Most likely, unless you are a going to military balls or official galas, you will not wear the dress again. I am a military spouse and I still didn’t wear them again. Accept this, and move on. It is like that for every bridesmaid. There is no sense in ruining a relationship over this issue.
- Do make sure that you are available to the bride on her wedding day and any other occasions attached to the wedding. Your sole purpose is to be there for the bride and help her with what she needs. I have personally experienced a time when the bridesmaids did not do this. Although I did not know the bride very well (I was a friend of the groom), I stepped in and helped her through some issues (ie – getting dressed, fixing a spot on the gown left by flower pollen, moving people through the photo shoot, etc). Her maid-of-honor definitely should have been on this, as well as her bridesmaid friends. Instead, they were more worried about how they would look than they were about how well the bride looked. This was causing the bride to be stressed out and have moments of breakdowns. She was so grateful when I stepped in and helped her, even with simple things. All in all, remember that this day is about the bride, not you. I was blessed to have friends who did this for me and my wedding was fantastic!
- Gift-giving, parties, and such are important. However, they are not most important. The most important thing is making this moment the best it can be for the bride. If she loves parties, throw one. If she loves gifts, have several bridal showers instead of one. Be open with the bride about what she wants. If you ask her lots of questions about what sort of things she expects, it will help you plan stellar activities as well as properly spend your money. Remember, not all brides are the same. They will like or not like different things. Do your best to accommodate what she wants, not what you want.
If you can keep these three rules in mind, you will succeed in being a great bridesmaid. Remember, no matter how stressed out the bride gets, she chose you for a reason. She wants you to be a part of one of the most important days in her life. Keep the focus on her and make her day memorable for the right reasons. She will forever remember you, and thank you, for it.