Battling the Inner Bridezilla: An M.I.A. Bridesmaid

Well, it’s been about three weeks since my last Bridezilla entry, so I guess I’m about due to tell you about my latest wedding related freak out.

As many of you know, my fiancé and I are in the midst of planning our destination wedding set to take place in Mexico this fall. And as you can imagine, we’ve already hit a few snags along the way. Last time, I ranted about dealing with the overall stress of planning a wedding, but today, I have a more specific issue to address that perhaps some of you can relate to…

My bridesmaid isn’t coming to my wedding!

Oh, yes. It’s likely what all of us thought about and tried to avoid while carefully choosing our bridesmaids. They’re our sisters, our closest friends, our confidantes. They’re the ones we trust the most. So how could this happen?

I’ve heard the horror stories of bridesmaids dropping out or, even worse, just not showing up, but I never thought it could happen to me.

Sound familiar?

Well, as it turns out, my M.I.A. Bridesmaid just couldn’t afford it. And because I’m having a destination wedding, my girls not only have to fork over cash for their dresses, they also have to pay for the trip itself, and that kind of cash is sometimes not always easy to scrounge up. Fair enough.

So what do you do when something like this happens? Get Angry? Freak out? You could, but really, what good will that do besides make you even more upset and make her feel guilty?

No matter what the circumstances, your first instinct will be to get angry, and that’s OK. Allow yourself a few moments to fume (alone). Then move on.

I’ll admit it, I was angry. But then I thought about it and assured myself that she wasn’t trying to hurt me and she was probably just as upset about it as I was.

As cheesy as it sounds, I had to force myself to look at the big picture. Is this really important? No, not really. Is this going to ruin my wedding? No, it won’t.

Needless to say, there’s no hard feelings between us, we’ve moved passed it, and if by some miracle she is able to come after all, great! And over the next few months I’m going to try to come up with ways to include her in some of the pre-wedding celebrations so she still feels like part of my special day.

So, I guess the thing to take away from situations like this is just to breathe, think rationally and work through it…because you will get through it. I didn’t spend a lot of my time and energy trying to convince my M.I.A. Bridesmaid to reconsider or guilt her into changing her mind. Instead, I focused on possible alternatives.

Remember: as hard as it may seem, never place blame and don’t freak out. Come up with simple, quick and attainable solutions that has everyone’s best interests in mind.

It worked out for me. Not only have I maintain a strong relationship with the M.I.A. Bridesmaid, but I was also able to find a wonderful bridesmaid substitution who is so excited to be part of my bridal party — a win-win!

Happy weddings!

So, my fellow brides, tell me about your wedding planning snags and how you’ve battled your inner bridezilla, I’d love to hear all about it!

Photos courtesy of: Noelle Franzen and Benjamin Earwicker.

5 thoughts on “Battling the Inner Bridezilla: An M.I.A. Bridesmaid

  1. I am having problems with a bridesmaid who loves the honour of the title but is not wanting to participate. I have plenty of time until the wedding but almost every single part of this wedding is DIY. So, even though there is still 10 months, they are going to be crazy busy. I am lost and not sure what to do. I want to have her be a part of my day but if she is not going to help then I do not think she should have that honour… What do you think?

  2. Wow, great question, Nicki, and honestly I sort of felt the same way about my M.I.A. Bridesmaid (so I guess it was a blessing in disguise that she dropped out). I can totally relate to your frustrations, and what I found out, and fairly quickly, is that some of your bridesmaids will be super excited about your wedding and willing to help you out whenever you need it, and some just won’t. Unfortunately, unless you’re one of the lucky ones, that’s the harsh reality.
    I personally don’t believe in kicking someone out of your bridal party after they’ve already committed, so you and your other bridesmaids may have to pick up the slack and trudge along without her. Remember, your hard working bridesmaids will be able to experience that rewarding “I made that” feeling of satisfaction and pride at your wedding, whereas she will miss out on that. Maybe that is one consolation? And who knows, maybe she’ll come around in the next few months and start pitching in.

    Does anyone else have any suggestions?

  3. @Nicki,

    I had the same problem with one of my bridesmaids! Her sister is getting married this year too, and she’s a MOH for her. So she ended up siding with her sister ALL the time, and wouldn’t make the time of day for me. She even flaked out when we all went bridesmaid dress shopping, because her sister decided to change her plans for the weekend at the last minute. So I finally straight up asked her if she is going to be able to split her time 50/50, and she made the decision to drop out. I suggest it. You just have to make sure you’re tactful about it so you don’t hurt her feelings permanently. The earlier she decides to either pull up her socks or drop out, it will make it easier for you to find a replacement if needed. 🙂

  4. I’m having my wedding over here in Canada where we emmigrated to four years ago. My family and some of my closest friends live in England (where we are originally from). I had planned for my sister and my best friend to be my bridesmaids but totally understood if they could not make it due to financial restraints or unable to get time off work. My sister unfortunatley can’t be here for our special day and it looks like my best friend may not be able to attend either. I wasn’t angry nor upset. I still treat them as if they are part of the wedding party by emailing them all my ideas and plans and getting their feedback. They both have bridesmaids gifts that I will be sending them and a wedding photo book showing them how thay helped design the theme and mood of the wedding. At the end of the day I am marrying my fiance and that means the most to me. Even if no one attended, it is the union of him and I that I care about. Yes it would be lovely to have everyone here to share our special day but in reality that doesn’t always happen. It doesn’t mean that your guests don’t love or care about you. They are probably feeling terrible that they can’t make it and that your letting them down. I feel that if you share with them the planning of your wedding they will be there in spirit with you on the day and they will still be a very special part of your wedding.

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