Bridesmaids - How to Deal with Difficult Bridesmaids
Every bride needs help on how to deal with difficult bridesmaids. Here's our advice for keeping things on a happy playing field for everyone.
Bridesmaids are supposed to be there through the craziness of getting married from the annoying in-laws to being there for you during the bridal fittings. But sometimes, even your best support systems can break under all the stress. From bridesmaid dress distress to gripes about expenses, keeping a bridal party happy can be as demanding as the wedding planning itself. Every bride needs to know how to manage complaints from the entire bridal party. Here are our top tips to common problems that may arise.
Problem: A bridesmaid says “NO!” to the dress that you love
Solution: You selected your bridesmaids to be honest with you so listen to what they have to say about the bridesmaid dress. Are they complaining about the price, the color or the style – figuring out what they are opposed to will make it easier for you to compromise with your bridal party. Sure it’s your wedding, but it’s their self-esteem (and probably their money), and you need these ladies to love you long after your wedding. For instance, tell them you’ll pick the color and then let them choose the style. Have them all go through the same gown manufacturer so that the fabric is identical. Dye lots may not match if you pick different styles so keep that in mind if you go this route. There is no rule that the dresses need to be the same. If a bridesmaid is being unreasonable (make sure it’s not you being too demanding), let her know how important your vision is and that you will work together to find a dress that will make you both happy. Remember that ultimately it is your wedding and your decision but finding a happy medium will make it more pleasant for everyone.
Problem: Your bridesmaids are complaining about expenses
Solution: Be considerate. Most of your bridesmaids will only wear this dress for your wedding day so don’t make them take out a loan to be a part of your wedding party. Choose a dress that is reasonably priced -- have them tell you what price works for them -- or work together with your party to find a dress that’s both within their style and budget. Brides are not required to pay for the dresses, but if you want a dress that is really expensive, consider adding it on to your own budget or paying for half or part of the dress. Also if you are having a destination wedding try to mitigate their expenses – if they are paying for the dress don’t make them pay for makeup, hair or shoes.
Problem: One or more of your bridesmaids are being less than helpful
Solution: The job of a good bridesmaid is to be a great friend. She should be there with emotional support, encouragement and, at this stage of your life, a willingness to help with tasks that have to do with your wedding day from the fun to the boring. If one of your bridesmaids is not doing her part, it’s important that you be honest with her and clearly communicate your needs. Once you’ve both cleared the air you should be able to move ahead and not have any tension. Just remember to thank them openly and often throughout the process so they feel appreciated.
Problem: One of your bridesmaids does not fit in
Solution: Sometimes there are pressures to ask people to be in your party who you would just rather not ask -- a family member that you are not close to for example. No one can force you to include these people in your party, but if you have included a person that you are not close with and they are having a hard time fitting in and playing nice with the others be considerate. Be aware that they may also feel like and outsider and need your support to get along with the others.