Wedding Etiquette Forum

Honorary Bridesmaid

My friend was an 'honorary' bridesmaid for a couple this weekend.   She was close enough to the couple that they wanted to 'honor' her with a title, but adding her as a 'real' bridesmaid would've made the numbers uneven and look weird.   She was given the title and dutifully said nothing so as not to ruffle any feathers.

She's close enough to the couple that at the wedding many friends and family specifically asked her why she wasn't a bridesmaid.  She informed me that she bean dipped the heck out of those people. But the kicker was, when it came to the program, she was listed as a bridesmaid.  Didn't get the dress, didn't get to stand up with her friends, but was noted as one.  Now the bride and groom probably did this as a gesture of importance and kindness - however for the rude people of the crowd, it became a new question with which to bombard my friend with: 'Well it says your a BM, why aren't you up with the girls?'  'Are you not standing up and wearing the dress, because it didn't fit you in time?' 'Did you forget to order your dress?'   So then she had to inform the inquisitive group that although it states she's a BM she's just an honorary one.    Although she didn't say so to me, I gathered by the tone of her voice, having to state that, was more humiliating then anything, as the bean dipping was working earlier.

Note to brides:  If you have friends and family who you're close with and want to stand up with you - MAKE THEM YOUR BRIDESMAIDS. Don't degrade them or your relationship with them by tacking on 'honorary.'  If you must have those even numbers, then let it go, tell your friend you appreciate them, but don't lesson their friendship, by saying they're only good enough for 'honorary.'
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Re: Honorary Bridesmaid

  • Your poor friend! I had to choose between 2 or 7 bridesmaids and went with 2. The other 5 girls are wonderful friends but I'm not giving them a job or ridiculous title. They are invited to come and be a guest.
  • Your friend needs a back bone. It sucks, but she should have said no when she had the chance. I get not 'ruffling feathers' and there was no way of anticipating being listed as a bridesmaid, but if she felt uneasy, she should have said something. However, I'm pretty confrontational. 
  • @RebeccaFlower so is my friend.  I gathered that the idea of her being an 'honorary bridesmaid' was mentioned in casual passing at the previous wedding events.  IE at event where bride was present: Guest "Oh are you a bridesmaid?' Bride answers "Oh no, but she's an honorary bridesmaid.' in front of my friend and that's when she found out she was an 'honorary bridesmaid.'
  • Make your friend answer awkward questions, all because uneven sides would "look weird". Great idea. Do people count up the men and women in photos to make them symmetrical? No. Then why, on your wedding day, is symmetrical photos suddenly a concern?
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    dinnerparty3
  • "Well, I was a bridesmaid, but the bride got fed up with me for not caring enough about her wedding even though I have a nursing baby and job woes so couldn't really focus on her. Plus, I complained too much about the dress and refused to order it in a timely enough manner for her taste. I also didn't want to do craft nights on a weekly basis so, she demoted me! I'm surprised she kept me in the program." Based on the number of "Can I demote my bridesmaid?" posts on the Wedding Party board, I'm surprised she didn't bust out that explanation. I'm sorry that happened to her. Awkward city!
    ________________________________


  • Make your friend answer awkward questions, all because uneven sides would "look weird". Great idea. Do people count up the men and women in photos to make them symmetrical? No. Then why, on your wedding day, is symmetrical photos suddenly a concern?
    This. That was a stupid thing to do, and for a really stupid reason. The photos of the wedding party standing in a perfect line are always awkward anyway. Having 1 extra person on 1 side isn't going to spur the apocalypse. By "honoring" her it sounds like they kind of made her day a bit hellish and awkward. That sucks.
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    Liatris2010
  • I don't understand when people do this, and also when it happens with guys, when a groom asks a bunch of guys to be groomsmen and then a few other guys to be ushers. “Sorry, you’re going to have to come to all the rehearsal stuff, look nice at the ceremony and seat people, but you can’t sit with us.”
    Daisypath Anniversary tickers


    LakeR2014Knottie38787968
  • Honorary Bridesmaids is like Black tie option. You are either a bridesmaid or not. Just like your event is either black tie or it's not. Why make it more complicated than it needs to be?






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • peachy13 said:
    I don't understand when people do this, and also when it happens with guys, when a groom asks a bunch of guys to be groomsmen and then a few other guys to be ushers. “Sorry, you’re going to have to come to all the rehearsal stuff, look nice at the ceremony and seat people, but you can’t sit with us.”
    I never understood the point of ushers. It's so obviously a bitch chore.

    My groomsmen hung out by the entrance to the church and welcomed/ushered people and handed out programs. We didn't need separate ushers.
    Anniversary
  • Make your friend answer awkward questions, all because uneven sides would "look weird". Great idea. Do people count up the men and women in photos to make them symmetrical? No. Then why, on your wedding day, is symmetrical photos suddenly a concern?
    Wait, what? People don't count the bridesmaids?! Next you'll be telling me that my marriage will still be official if one of my guests wears white! Atrocious! Almost as preposterous as my bridesmaid who dared to wear the same color nail polish as me!
  • Your friend needs a back bone. It sucks, but she should have said no when she had the chance. I get not 'ruffling feathers' and there was no way of anticipating being listed as a bridesmaid, but if she felt uneasy, she should have said something. However, I'm pretty confrontational. 
    But most people won't say anything. That's the point. They love the bride and groom, so they reason "This is no big deal", and let it go, even if it makes them feel shitty.
  • SP29SP29 member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    Aw, I'm sorry for your friend!

    That was very rude of her friend, and I can imagine how humuliating that would be to answer all those questions. 
  • I feel terrible for your friend. It should have been a fun night for her. I mean, someone she cares about is getting married! Yay, celebrate! Instead she spent the night being bombarded with people wanting her to explain her role to them. How awkward. :(
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  • Jesus in heaven. How rude.
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  • Make your friend answer awkward questions, all because uneven sides would "look weird". Great idea.

    Do people count up the men and women in photos to make them symmetrical? No. Then why, on your wedding day, is symmetrical photos suddenly a concern?

    Wait, what? People don't count the bridesmaids?! Next you'll be telling me that my marriage will still be official if one of my guests wears white! Atrocious! Almost as preposterous as my bridesmaid who dared to wear the same color nail polish as me!

    But...

    You seem to have mistaken marriage requirements. You are focussing on the wrong bridesmaid, stating she wore the same colour nail varnish as you. In actual fact, you should have demoted the rest for NOT having the same nail varnish.

    Your marriage is invalid.
    Do-over.

    /sarcasm (just in case lurkers).
    ashleyep
  • twitterbird said: Your poor friend! I had to choose between 2 or 7 bridesmaids and went with 2. The other 5 girls are wonderful friends but I'm not giving them a job or ridiculous title. They are invited to come and be a guest.
    you
    HAD to choose?...Do tell.  Because I sense there is a story here..perhaps we can help problem solve for you as it seems like it shouldn't have been so black/white for you
  • I wish the girl who had asked me to be an "honorary"bridesmaid on her wedding had never even mentioned it. It BEYOND stunk. Every one of our friend group of 6 was in it, except for me. It made finding a table at the reception really awkward, and I finally sat down at the one reserved for bridesmaids, since they were my only friends at the entire wedding!! Just don't do it.
    holyguacamole79LakeR2014
  • WildMageletWildMagelet member
    First Anniversary 5 Love Its First Comment First Answer
    edited September 2014
    Your poor friend! I had to choose between 2 or 7 bridesmaids and went with 2. The other 5 girls are wonderful friends but I'm not giving them a job or ridiculous title. They are invited to come and be a guest.
    you HAD to choose?...Do tell.  Because I sense there is a story here..perhaps we can help problem solve for you as it seems like it shouldn't have been so black/white for you


    Not the poster, but it sounded like a case of 'circles' when I first read the comment.
    Formerly known as flutterbride2b
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