Ana
Savvy October 2020

My Bridesmaids are more distant than ever

Ana, on January 28, 2019 at 10:28 PM Posted in Etiquette and Advice 0 42
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Help! I feel like I’m doing something wrong.

Timeline: I got engaged 8/18, I asked my bridesmaids and MOH to be bridesmaids in 10/18. I had my 1st choice MOH decline, and one of my bridesmaids choices decline.

Fine, I get it, it happens.

I now have had ANOTHER bridesmaid withdraw, my MOH has been hard to get a hold of for weeks, and the rest of my bridesmaids seem to care less about me or the role they accepted. I don’t feel I text them too much regarding wedding details, about twice a month. I asked their advice on dresses they want to wear and accessories as well as hairstyles and makeup! I have only asked for their opinion when it comes to them. We are at a point where no one texts me back, in a group chat or individual one, and I don’t hear from them - ever. What did I do wrong? Did I completely overthink my relationship with so many women? I thought I was closer than this with them! Should I just say screw it and not have a bridal party?

I thought they were suppose to ease my anxiety, not create it!

42 Comments

  • Nicole
    Rockstar July 2020
    Nicole ·
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    You've asked your bridal party much too early. It's recommended to wait until about 8 months out from the wedding as there really isn't anything they need to be doing until then (ordering dress, etc.) Since you've already asked, I would cool it on the wedding talk until you get to the 8 month out mark.

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  • Ana
    Savvy October 2020
    Ana ·
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    I’m having a destination wedding so I thought I needed to give them extra time. I’m asking for a lot financially so I wanted to make them feel like they have some say and aren’t dropping $$$ on ugly, uncomfortable clothing. I also am purchasing my dress in 10/19 in LA. I invited them all to come with me, and I know it’s 9 months away but ticket prices only go up as time passes. I guess I’m an over planner but it’s stressing me out!
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  • Sarah
    Dedicated April 2019
    Sarah ·
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    I am also having a destination wedding and my bridesmaids are coming in from all over. I honestly asked my bridesmaids probably a month or two after getting engaged like you did. Engaged April 5th, and mailed their boxes at the end of May. Wedding is this April. I don't think you are asking too much at all. It all has to do with them. But perhaps tackle one thing at a time. For instance, when it comes to dresses. Pick a store/website that has the colors and different styles they can choose from. That way you narrow it down and they have one place to choose from rather than having them have to decide on a style and where to get it from.

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  • MOB So Cal
    January 2019
    MOB So Cal ·
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    As soon as you said, "I'm asking for a lot financially," that was a red flag to me. Maybe that's why they dropped out and/or don't answer your messages. Did you ask them, individually, about their budget and what's reasonable for them? I also agree you asked way too early. The only responsibility BMs have is to stand by you at the wedding wearing a dress (that's within their budget). Group texts twice a month when the wedding is 18+ months away would scare me off, and it seems like a lot to suggest they fly in to go wedding dress shopping with you -- I wouldn't do that unless it was my daughter. Honestly? It sounds like you might have some pretty high expectations about the time and money they should be committing to your wedding. You might want to lower your expectations and give them a break for a while.

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  • Ana
    Savvy October 2020
    Ana ·
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    I mean that I am asking a lot financially due to our ages (mid 20’s) and the fact that it is a destination wedding. I have told them I am paying for their lodging and food while they are there as well as professional makeup for the wedding day. They are paying for transportation and their dress/accessories - that’s it. Dresses are $180 at the highest of my choices. Based on what I’ve read, that’s a lot less than most bridesmaids are asked to pay for - especially for destination weddings. I also asked for them to come to LA as a way for that to be my bachelorette party. I don’t want the standard strip club outing and figured - who doesn’t want to go to LA for a weekend? I also offered to help pay for tickets and rent us a beach house. I didn’t think that was usual of a bride to offer.

    It seems to be I’m expecting a dream bridal party rather than a realistic one...
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  • Ana
    Savvy October 2020
    Ana ·
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    I do try to keep communication a singular topic for that conversation as wel as narrow down choices that are reasonably priced. I guess I’m just hoping for a dream bridal party and need to accept the reality of it
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  • Sarah
    Dedicated April 2019
    Sarah ·
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    I’m sorry this is happening. Ideally you want everyone just as excited as you are. Maybe some space and try revisiting the topics in a few months
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  • Ana
    Savvy October 2020
    Ana ·
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    Thanks Sarah! I hope it turns around as time goes on
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  • MOB So Cal
    January 2019
    MOB So Cal ·
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    Yeah, those "dream bridal parties" are more often a fantasy. Generally, the bride shouldn't be planning her own bachelorette party -- and a full year in advance would be really early, even if someone else were planning it. Maybe that's part of what is turning your bridesmaids off? Let your BM's plan/host parties for you, if they choose to. What you see as proactive "over planning" they may see as micromanaging and overstepping. Also, especially with the costs of a destination wedding, expecting the BMs to travel for a bachelorette party you're planning may seem like too much.

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  • Dayna
    Savvy September 2019
    Dayna ·
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    Honestly my suggestion would be talking with each of them one on one in person or by phone. I disagree that you asked them to early! I would just address it and get to the root of the issue. If they are the friends you think they are, they’ll tell you. Just make sure you truly listen to what they say and process it with them. There is nothing worse than being blown off by a friend when you bring your concerns to them!
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  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
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    I have been in a lot of wedding parties over 20 years time. BM should be asked no earlier than 9-12 months before the wedding. Or if asked earlier, just that they will participate on a certain date at a certain date , and what your plans are for the wedding. Then all other plans for BM deferred until close to the wedding. You are 21 months out, and already pushing the limit, planning far to early on anything regarding the bridal party. There is nothing a BM needs to do until the last 5 months. Nothing. A bachelorette is never planned by the bride, it is in the bride's honor, and others decide where and when and what the budget is. If you want yo throw a party for yourself and friends or BP, you pick up all the costs of the party, the food and lodgings. And like any minor party of the wedding ( reception only major one) , bachelorette and shower parties should be dealt with, discussing times that are convenient, location, and budget that the planners ( not bride) are comfortable with , in the last 6 months or less. That is when people know their schedules, and what money they really have. Only the wedding date itself is set earlier, not showers and bachelorette parties. You are planning things that are up to others. That is like saying, as a gift to me, the bride, I want you to pay a load of money and come to LA for a bach. I the bride am planning for myself. I do not know anyone who would not think that Gimmee This, I Want It, behavior very rude.. Your BP might not want both a shower and a bachelorette, and you are not supposed to plan them. So they probably feel backed up against a wall, not wanting to fight you, but unhappy, and hoping that if they do not answer, you will back off. Wait until 6 months or until someone offers to throw a bachelorette party ir shower for you. They may not plan until 3 months out if the party is for a month before the wedding, earlier if at 3 months. But some people plan showers in a week, send invitations 3 weeks ahead, or just call people to invite them. You are more than a year early. Dresses for bridesmaids take 2-10 weeks to come in, and usually, if orders in the last 4 months, people's sizes fo not change and few alterations are needed. Since they do not need to order until 4 months before the wedding, have them shop later. Do not bring up dresses until 5 months ahead. Drop what you have been doing, or your entire BP may drop you. It does happen. As for people needing a year and a half or more to save up, that is a wrong assumption. People need to save that far ahead for their own wedding, or for a car or major purchase, like a house down payment. But someone else's wedding should be a small fraction of their income. Whether they have 5 years or 6 months to save, they need to cap the total dollars. And you are assuming they want to travel to LA for a multi-day party they may not even want to have, since they are paying travel to your destination wedding. Back off, and tend only to bride and groom things. Your destination venue and ceremony, your budget, menus and guest lists, invitations and any special clothing and accessories for yourself and the groom. Get back to planning that includes BM a year or more from now. And do not plan parties that others should offer to host. They ate not something you are entitled to, they are a gift from other people. And it is not polite to plan on having other people give you things, they make the choice to do it or not do it.
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  • Denah
    Savvy March 2019
    Denah ·
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    I honestly think you are doing just fine. I cant understand why your people are dropping like flies but I can hear the concern in your message. If worst come to worst, your wedding is so far out you do have time but I understand the haste due to the destination nature of it. My best advice would be talking to them and seeing if they can even front the bill for the trip. That may be why they are acting strange. Did they know right away that it was a destination wedding? Or...


    I wish you the absolute best of luck! And congratulations Smiley smile

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  • V
    Super April 2019
    Valerie ·
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    "Who doesn't want to go to LA for a weekend?" - my response to that would be who actually wants to go to LA for a weekend?? You are making a ton of assumptions about budget and cost and their wants that just shouldn't be made by you. If they want to throw you a bach party that is fine, but not required and you might not get because you are having a destination wedding. I've had two friends have destination weddings and neither of them had formal/traditional pre-wedding parties because it wasn't in anyone's budget. Neither bride was upset by this as it was part of what they knew would be the case when they made the choice for a destination wedding.

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  • Aubrie
    Dedicated September 2019
    Aubrie ·
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    Yes! Also if these bridesmaids are working, consider the time off they're already having to commit to. Another weekend away from everything they have going on, asking for another Friday off, even possibly taking plans they have for themselves off of the table to accommodate that trip.
    Some girls may be all in on things like that, but it sounds like an individual conversation with them is in order- but please don't talk like you're doing them favors😬 they will drop lile flies. Let them be honest with you about any concerns, time or budget constraints.
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  • Rayna
    Devoted July 2019
    Rayna ·
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    I think it is way too much to ask people to go to a destination wedding AND a destination bachelorette party. They may not be responding bc they don’t know how to tell you no. I’d back off for a bit and tend to the relationships without talk of the wedding for now.
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  • Future Mrs. K
    VIP June 2019
    Future Mrs. K ·
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    Totally agree with this. Couldn’t have said it better myself
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  • Victoria
    Dedicated October 2019
    Victoria ·
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    Hi Ana,

    I'm sorry you are going through this. Based on your post, it doesn't seem like you are overdoing it.


    Have to talked to them on the phone, just to say hey? Or seen them face-to-face or hung out outside of wedding planning? Like girls lunch or something lowkey where y'all can talk about other things?

    Sometimes letting your friends know that you still care for them outside of wedding planning is important & can re-energize relationships, even if you aren't jamming the wedding planning down their throats, if that makes sense. From that synergy, things can easily fall back into place
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  • J
    Master 0000
    Judith ·
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    This : "Who doesn't want to go to LA for a weekend?" - my response to that would be who actually wants to go to LA for a weekend?? " . . Big assumption. Any time I have been to LA , I have hated the area and been desperate to leave as soon as possible. I only have stayed to see people I otherwise could not see, or for work. You may be making a big assumption that others will want to pay to travel there for a mere bachelorette. ( or shower) party. And most people still think of a bachelorette as a single afternoon or evening out, in the local area, though tv and media for wedding industry push longer and moe expensive ones. . I also agree, with all the extra time , money, travel, and work time off for a destination wedding, often bridal party and family say, that is enough. And will neither host or travel more than 1 hour for minor parties, shower, bach.,, or rehearsal or rehearsal dinner.
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  • H
    Dedicated October 2019
    H ·
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    I’m confused how you know the exact date you are purchasing your dress. I have a best friend in CA and I know for a fact if she asked all of us if we WANTED to come out to be with her shop for a bridal gown I would definitely say no considering all of the other trips I’d have to take not only for her wedding but for others. It’s a lot.
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  • Shamika
    Dedicated June 2019
    Shamika ·
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    You’re not an over planner! If you stay ahead, you’ll never be behind so you’re on the right track. Reach out once more, if you get no feedback, sad to say but X out your entire list. Go marry the love of your life in your beautiful destination setting with whom ever accompanies you all as guests and enjoy yourself. We’d all love to share that moment with loved ones, but at the beginning and end of the day, that step and commitment is all about you 2! Less ppl, less stress!
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