Moms and Maids

Should she back out?

My daughter called me for advice yesterday because she is thinking she may have to back out of a July wedding that is scheduled for 3 weeks after she is due to give birth to her first child. She accepted the role of bridesmaid before she got pregnant. (The good news is that there is a maternity version of the BM dress, which D will need, since she won't have lost the baby weight yet.)

I advised her to wait until the time gets closer, since she doesn't know how things will go, and it doesn't seem right to back out when there may not be a need and the bride really wants her to be there.

But I get her concerns. The bride is one of those women who has planned her wedding since childhood, and has all sorts of ideas about the festivities surrounding it. (She is from a fundamentalist Christian family, very sheltered, and even though she attends a different church now, weddings are still a huge deal in her community. I'm pretty sure they are why Pinterest was invented.) She told my D that she was planning a 3-day bachelorette thing at a lakeside cabin to take place less than a week before the wedding. D told her she was unlikely to be able to make the event, since she will be nursing a newborn, but her friend asked her to "just try" to come for part of it with the baby. It's clear that neither young woman really knows what to expect, since this is new to both of them.

D's husband cannot attend the wedding because of work, so the bride suggested that I come as D's plus one and hold the baby during the ceremony. I don't mind this at all, of course, but D is still not sure if she will be able to fully participate, since she has no idea how the birth and recovery will go.

If you were the bride, would you rather your BM back out now, or wait and hope for the best, even if you knew she was unlikely to be able to attend all of the pre-parties? 

Re: Should she back out?

  • It sounds to me like the bride is fine with whatever the maid needs to make this work. And as far as the bachelorette she said try to come to part of it - like stop by for an hour or something. I honestly didn't take this bride as being overbearing. 
    MesmrEwe
  • Casadena said:

    I would flat refuse the bachelorette, that's ridiculous to think she would attend.

    For the wedding I would just be clear to bride that I want to be there, and will plan to be, but 1) baby is first priority all day 2) depending on recovery those plans may change at any second. 

    That is, if she WANTS to participate.  If she doesn't, then I don't see a problem with backing out if she decides it would be too much or doesn't want to deal with it.

    ETF: spelling

    This is essentially what your daughter should make clear to the bride.

    If I were the bride, I wouldn't want my friend to make any decisions this soon (unless she already knew for her ownself she wanted to step down).  But then, I'm also a laidback, roll with the punches kind of person.  At least as far as this kind of thing goes.  I'd want her there standing up with me if she could, but a game day decision is fine.  If she's not feeling up to it or can't make the wedding at all, no judgements!

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    OurWildKingdom
  • MobKazMobKaz Chicago suburbs member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    In a perfect world, the bride would relieve your daughter of any thought or worry regarding the wedding.  "Friend, I am so excited for you.  I have no idea what's in store for you.  Please know that I want you to think of yourself and baby.  If there is a way you can attend the wedding, I will be thrilled.  If not, I look forward to sharing it all with you when I visit to see the new LO."

    If it were my daughter, I would suggest she consider attending only as a guest.  In that way there is no pressure on her to push herself needlessly.  Some people sail through baby #1 without a care in the world.  (A friend of DD's literally attended a Christmas dinner out at a restaurant with her 3 day old baby!!!  I thought it was insane on multiple levels, but clearly she did not.)  Others won't leave the house until the baby's first post birth appointment.  The last thing your daughter needs is to feel any pressure or burden one way or another.  Making that decision now relieves everyone of stress and anticipation of what will or won't happen on the wedding day.
    OurWildKingdomMairePoppy
  • ILoveBeachMusicILoveBeachMusic Indiana member
    Sixth Anniversary 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    If I were the bride, I would rather my friend wait and see how things go and make the decision at the time. I would be fine with that decision. I would not expect my friend to attend a bachelorette with a newborn baby. As the friend, I would want to be there but wouldn't want to take part in the BP or probably not the getting ready stuff. Your daughter should do whatever she is most comfortable doing. Granted my own DD had twins via C-section with some pretty major complications, but there was no way she could've attended much less been a bridesmaid in a wedding 1-4 weeks postpartum.
    MobKazcharlotte989875
  • Is this bride someone who is understanding?  It's one thing to be excited about your wedding but it's another to be unable to understand reason.   If she's excited and just not familiar with peers having babies then while I wrote a long tirade I'd play the entire thing by ear and would hope my friend is comfortable.  


    charlotte989875
  • I’d want to honor my friend; however she is comfortable. I think your daughter has the right instinct to decline the bachelorette weekend, and wait and see for the wedding. I’m assuming here the wedding is local to both you and your D? 

    I was in a wedding where the MOH had ~4 week old baby. The baby hung out with us during hair, the MOH came to things when she could, the father and grandparents  was there and taking the baby when she didn’t need to be with the MOH. But it was her 4th child, had no complications, and had a ton of support (they did have all 4 kids with them for the weekend).
  • Thanks so much for all of your helpful replies! To clarify, the bride is not selfish, just clueless about what a new mother goes through, and super excited about getting married. My daughter did decline the bachelorette party, but I think the bride hopes she can put in an appearance for part of it. She's just going to let that go until the baby is born. Really, this girl will be happy no matter what. It's my D, a type A person, who is anxious about managing expectations.

    My daughter lives a four hour drive from us and the festivities. She will have her baby up here (midwife and doula if all goes well), and then return home with her husband. They have jobs in both places and stay with us 1-2 days a week anyway. Or, depending on timing,  she may just stay up here for a bit until she's rested. 






    charlotte989875
  • maine7mob said:
    Thanks so much for all of your helpful replies! To clarify, the bride is not selfish, just clueless about what a new mother goes through, and super excited about getting married. My daughter did decline the bachelorette party, but I think the bride hopes she can put in an appearance for part of it. She's just going to let that go until the baby is born. Really, this girl will be happy no matter what. It's my D, a type A person, who is anxious about managing expectations.

    My daughter lives a four hour drive from us and the festivities. She will have her baby up here (midwife and doula if all goes well), and then return home with her husband. They have jobs in both places and stay with us 1-2 days a week anyway. Or, depending on timing,  she may just stay up here for a bit until she's rested. 






    I don’t think she sounds selfish, maybe a bit naive (except for the “putting in an appearance” part, that seems a little ridiculous IMO). 

    If your D is a planner/wants to manage her friends expectations I’d tell her to just talk to her friend; explain she’s not sure how she’s going to feel/if she’ll be up for traveling with the baby, etc. If your D is able maybe she buys the dress in the case she feels like she can go & participate, assuming you’re able to go with her and there are all the things she’ll need available. 

    But id just remind your D that it’s perfectly fine not to go and to put her health and the health of the baby first. If she’s not “up” for driving 4 hours to a wedding away from home potentially 1-3 (or more) weeks after having a child, she shouldn’t feel bad about staying home. 
    All of this! 

    Also, as a planner myself having kids has been an ongoing lesson in letting go.  Sometimes you can't make plans and that's OK.   
    maine7mobOurWildKingdomMesmrEwe
  • The potential issue is the baby could be a week old at the wedding and if she's planning to latch/pump/etc. that can complicate things because newborns are hungry when they're hungry and don't give a rip it's someone's wedding.  OTOH, the baby could be 4-6 weeks at the time of the wedding and your daughter is going to be leaving the "honeymoon" phase of having a first child.  

    The reality is that she needs to ask the bride what she wants/expects because there are a lot of unknowns.  Hormone variables (no one talks about, but going from producing a human to baby on the outside is a HUGE hormonal shift).  If the baby is a "Unicorn Baby" and sleeps through through the night immediately or the baby could be Colicy and be screaming their little head off with her on zero sleep, then add in c/s vs. vaginal delivery recovery, etc.  Then the dress which will literally need to be ordered at the LAST second (9th month) and bride needs to be open about the shoes (childbirth is heck on the feet!)..  PICU/NICU situations.  The bride needs to be fine with the variables and the understanding that this stuff is ALL out of your daughter's control.  I wouldn't recommend backing out, but I would HIGHLY recommend a "come to Jesus" on first born babies and that it could be much ado about nothing she'll be feeling wonderful after a few weeks PP, the baby isn't steeling the bride's thunder, and that she's going to need time to latch/pump/feed/change/etc. if things work out (reality 101, BF doesn't work for everyone and if that happens, it's not your daughter's fault, "FED is best!"  They all eat nuggets off the floor at some point and turn out just fine!) as she'll still be in that first initial healing window PP.  

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  • ^^LOL, @MesmrEwe, thanks for the reminder about the newborn feeding issues! My daughter (the one in the OP) had horrible issues with latching on, and even though I had a LLL consultant, I ended up bottle feeding her at 5 months when I could not get the pump to work. FED is indeed best. Oh, and she was my easy baby!
    MesmrEwe
  • maine7mob said:
    ^^LOL, @MesmrEwe, thanks for the reminder about the newborn feeding issues! My daughter (the one in the OP) had horrible issues with latching on, and even though I had a LLL consultant, I ended up bottle feeding her at 5 months when I could not get the pump to work. FED is indeed best. Oh, and she was my easy baby!
    I exclusively pumped which now is totally encouraged, but with my first LLL and LC's both HATED that anyone dare not want to latch!  I literally had zero support with figuring out the pump and when the pump had problems with the membranes (it wasn't ME!), they were downright cruel.  That said, I'm so glad Moms now benefit from our generations learning about such things!  

    Really, I hope things go smoothly for her, but it's the reality that she may be feeling wonderful, or run over by a Mack Truck, it's a "Game Day Decision" to go at that point PP, nothing more or less!  And, she may need the nudge to get out of the house of the wedding to feel human again!
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  • I didn't think of it until @MesmrEwe mentioned shoes, but my mom told me her shoe size permanently went up a 1/2 size after being pregnant.  Not sure if that was after pregnancy #1 or #2.

    Though my sister was pregnancy #2, so I'm sure it's her fault, lol.

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    MesmrEwe
  • FWIW my shoe size changed WHILE pregnant.  My feet and ankles swelled like proofing bread.
    MesmrEwe
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