Wedding Party
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Difficult Bridal Party

So, I'm pretty strong willed, and as such, so are a good chunk of my friends. 

I love them dearly (but less-so lately), and I wanted to include them in my wedding, but they BUCK ME ON EVERYTHING.  I decide the dress, a big fat no.  I decide the favors, ummm, no.  I give them 5 options for bridesmaids dresses, ummm, no and beyond the no, I get a "nasty-gram" saying I refuse to buy a dress I hate, basically, an ultimatum.  Let me pick my dress or I want out. 

It's going to TEAR our relationships apart, it has already begun.  If I "fire" them it will make things worse. 

Yeah, I know, bad choices, but they are or were my group of tight knit friends.

What do I do? 

Re: Difficult Bridal Party

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    They are kind of right here...why make them pay for a dress that they hate? Give them a set of parameters (fabric, color, designer, length, etc) and let them choose what is comfortable and affordable for them. They don't have to be all matchy-matchy :)
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    Agreed with PP.  They should have a say on the dresses if they are buying.  

    Aside from that, don't ask for their opinions on things if you aren't going to respect their opinion.  That might be a good hint that those favors aren't a good idea if a few people are frowning towards them.  

    Why don't you ask for some guidelines on what they would like in a dress?  If you have girls with different sizes, heights, etc. they are all going to want something different.  Ask them to send you a few dresses that they like and try to find a common theme.  
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    Ditto pps.  Decide the color & length (& maybe material) & let them each pick their own dress.  Don't ask them anything else.  The only thing you need their opinion on is what they're wearing.
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    [QUOTE]So, I'm pretty strong willed, and as such, so are a good chunk of my friends.  I love them dearly (but less-so lately), and I wanted to include them in my wedding, but they BUCK ME ON EVERYTHING.  I decide the dress, a big fat no.  I decide the favors, ummm, no.  I give them 5 options for bridesmaids dresses, ummm, no and beyond the no, I get a "nasty-gram" saying I refuse to buy a dress I hate, basically, an ultimatum.  Let me pick my dress or I want out.  It's going to TEAR our relationships apart, it has already begun.  If I "fire" them it will make things worse.  Yeah, I know, bad choices, but they are or were my group of tight knit friends. What do I do? 
    Posted by boredincharleston[/QUOTE]
    Stop talking to them about wedding details.  The've obviously indicated that they don't agree with all of your choices.  Change the topic if they bring it up.

    Ask them what their criteria are for a dress - price, cuts they love or hate.  Choose new dress options based on those and let each choose their own dress from those options or from a set designer in a certain color, length and maybe fabric.  They should have some veto power on their dresses since they are probably the ones paying for and wearing them.
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    Why would you want them to buy dresses they hate?  You shouldn't be picking the dresses without their input.  It's also way too early to be shopping for BM dresses.  So wait a couple of months and then come back to it, asking for their budgets and input and go for there.  As for the other details, if you don't want criticism of your ideas, don't talk about them with people!  If they want to discuss your wedding, just say you want it to be a surprise and change the subject.
    Planning Our Wedding - Updated 04/11/11
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    "If you can't think of something nice to say, don't say something nice" - Stephen Colbert
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    I agree, first take a deep breath, and that the only real say your BMs have is in their own dress. 

    I know what it's like to have someone say No to your dress.  My aunt came with me to look at dresses, I walked out knowing it was the one.  She took one look and said "I hate it"  You know what, I bought it anyway.  It made me feel beautiful, and she wasnt buying it or wearing it.  So that's about where her opinion ceased to matter.  But it does hurt, and make you doubt your decision.  I doubted my for a while, but looking back at wedding pictures, I know without a shadow of a doubt I made the right decision.  You will too! 

    And favors are just one of the small details, if you like the favors, do it, it's really not going to matter in the long run. 

    Just put it all on hold for a while, get back to being just friends, and hopefully when it comes time to actually buy their dresses, it will go a little smoother.  Ask what they want to wear, like PP said, maybe just give them general guidelines, and let them take it from there. 

    Good luck!
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    Oh and one last thought...

    Do you really want a wedding, something that is supposed to be fun and happy, tear friendships apart.  I am going to assume the answer is no.  So don't let it.  You have that control and power.  Change it!

    Ok, now I'm really done!
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    For everything except the bridesmaid dresses, ignore them. Stop talking about those details around them, and they won't be able to criticize what they don't hear about.

    For the bridesmaid dresses, since they are the ones paying for them and wearing them, you need to work with them to find something they like. If the problem is that you want them in a matching dress and they all can't agree on one, then pick a designer/color/length/fabric and let them choose their own styles from there. That way, it still looks uniform, but everyone will be happy in her own style (and few guests, if any, will probably notice that they're not exactly alike).
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    The others have pretty well covered it.  Since the bridesmaids have to pay for and wear the dress, it SHOULD be something they're happy with, so you're going to have to work with them and come to some sort of compromise.  (Though I ditto Retread that it's far, far too early to be thinking about attire.)  If they'd rather not be in the wedding than wear a dress they don't like, well, that's entirely their prerogative.  Sorry, but when dealing with other people's bodies, the burden is on the bride to be flexible and accommodating, or else come across as a domineering bitch.

    And aside from what to wear and when to show up, they don't need to know a damn thing about the wedding.  They're not obligated to help you plan.  Hopefully you have more going on in your life than just wedding planning, so focus on that stuff when talking to them and try not bringing the wedding up at all.  I'll bet you'll be amazed at how quickly they start to resemble your friends again.
    This is a neglected planning bio.
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    Sometimes I feel like people think that brides are delicate little flower princesses who get all dressed up and pretty for one special moment of their dreams, when really they're just normal people who just happen to be getting married. Things shouldn't have to be sugar-coated for grown-ass women. -mstar284
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    It's a little difficult to understand the details of what happened with the bridesmaid dresses.  It sounds like you gave them options, so it's possible they're just being difficult and want exactly their way and no compromise will do.  Or maybe all the options you gave them had something specific the same about them that they hated?

    All that aside, I don't think you need to give them carte blanch to just have whatever dress they want.  Some brides are happy with the whole, pick a color and let the bridesmaids loose, thing, but some brides aren't, and you absolutely are not obligated to be one of those brides.

    As long as the dress is in their budget, and isn't offensive to the BM in some way (like, she's uncomfortable with how low, short, tight it is, or it compromises some kind of religious or cultural dress code, etc.) then I don't believe you have any further obligation to accommodate.

    Personally, I think the easiest solution is to pick a designer, fabric, color and length and then let them all pick their own style.  It's what I would do if I had it to do over again, because it would have saved me a lot of hassle.  If they're not willing to cooperate with that, well, I don't know what I'd do.  
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    First of all, it is important to remember that this is YOUR day. YOUR wedding, YOUR pictures, and YOUR big moment. Your friends are there to support YOU.

    Now, I am fortunate and my BM's (with the exception of 1, and I have 6. Those 6 range in height from 5'2" to 5'11" and in weight from 110 - 215) are all very flexible, within reason. I told them that I wanted them to wear the same dress and they are all okay with that, so long as they get to pick it. So, I bought a color swatch and we are going to David's Bridal to shop. They will choose a dress together that they all like and everyone will win, becaue I will have BM's with matching dresses and they will pick a style they all like.

    Have a sit down with your girls. Tell them that you are willing to compromise, but remind them that this is your big day and that you have certain visions about how you would like it to look. That is my advice. Good luck!
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_difficult-bridal-party?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:759ce869-61a2-424a-a65c-d6fd4ce06500Post:5789ffe4-4f1a-4564-a10b-000429175ff3">Re: Difficult Bridal Party</a>:
    [QUOTE]First of all, it is important to remember that this is YOUR day. YOUR wedding, YOUR pictures, and YOUR big moment. Your friends are there to support YOU. Now, I am fortunate and my BM's (with the exception of 1, and I have 6. Those 6 range in height from 5'2" to 5'11" and in weight from 110 - 215) are all very flexible, within reason. I told them that I wanted them to wear the same dress and they are all okay with that, so long as they get to pick it. So, I bought a color swatch and we are going to David's Bridal to shop. They will choose a dress together that they all like and everyone will win, becaue I will have BM's with matching dresses and they will pick a style they all like. Have a sit down with your girls. Tell them that you are willing to compromise, but remind them that this is your big day and that you have certain visions about how you would like it to look. That is my advice. Good luck!
    Posted by jen2187[/QUOTE]
    It is never just the bride's day. First, remember there's another person getting married.  Then you involved all these other people, and their comfort matters.<div>
    </div><div>I "knew" what dress I wanted my BMs to wear, but it looked terrible on them.  We wound up with a completely different style and color than I had envisioned, and I couldn't be happier about it.  They looked fantastic, and that's what I wanted.  15 months later, it means nothing.  The next day, it meant nothing.  They have to spend the money and wear the dress, you need to take their opinions into account.</div><div>
    </div><div>Stop boring them with the minutiae of your wedding.  No one else cares.  They care that you're getting married, they don't care what favors you're providing.  Sorry.  That's true of your wedding, that was true of my wedding, it's true of everyone's wedding.  No one wants to hear about the planning tidbits.  If you must share, your local board is a great place to do that.</div><div>
    </div><div>Finally, if ALL the BMs are acting weird, you need to look at yourself.  It's highly unlikely they're involved in some sort of conspiracy.  One BM acting up could be anyone's fault.  Two, maybe theirs.  But if ALL of them are acting this way, the common denominator is you and you need to take a step back and evaluate how you're treating them as friends.</div>
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_difficult-bridal-party?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:759ce869-61a2-424a-a65c-d6fd4ce06500Post:5789ffe4-4f1a-4564-a10b-000429175ff3">Re: Difficult Bridal Party</a>:
    [QUOTE]<strong>First of all, it is important to remember that this is YOUR day. YOUR wedding, YOUR pictures, and YOUR big moment. Your friends are there to support YOU. </strong>Now, I am fortunate and my BM's (with the exception of 1, and I have 6. Those 6 range in height from 5'2" to 5'11" and in weight from 110 - 215) are all very flexible, within reason. I told them that I wanted them to wear the same dress and they are all okay with that, so long as they get to pick it. So, I bought a color swatch and we are going to David's Bridal to shop. They will choose a dress together that they all like and everyone will win, becaue I will have BM's with matching dresses and they will pick a style they all like. Have a sit down with your girls. Tell them that you are willing to compromise, but remind them that this is your big day and that you have certain visions about how you would like it to look. That is my advice. Good luck!
    Posted by jen2187[/QUOTE]
    First of all, it actually takes TWO people to have a wedding.  It's not about HER, it's about THEM.  Second of all, when you involve other people, it stops being all about you and your FI, especially when you're asking other people to open up their wallets and wear what you tell them to.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_wedding-party_difficult-bridal-party?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:37Discussion:759ce869-61a2-424a-a65c-d6fd4ce06500Post:5789ffe4-4f1a-4564-a10b-000429175ff3">Re: Difficult Bridal Party</a>:
    [QUOTE]First of all, it is important to remember that this is YOUR day. YOUR wedding, YOUR pictures, and YOUR big moment. Your friends are there to support YOU. Now, I am fortunate and my BM's (with the exception of 1, and I have 6. Those 6 range in height from 5'2" to 5'11" and in weight from 110 - 215) are all very flexible, within reason. I told them that I wanted them to wear the same dress and they are all okay with that, so long as they get to pick it. So, I bought a color swatch and we are going to David's Bridal to shop. They will choose a dress together that they all like and everyone will win, becaue I will have BM's with matching dresses and they will pick a style they all like. Have a sit down with your girls. Tell them that you are willing to compromise, but remind them that this is your big day and that you have certain visions about how you would like it to look. That is my advice. Good luck!
    Posted by jen2187[/QUOTE]
    Please see my signature to understand why you lost all credibility with that first sentence.
    This is a neglected planning bio.
    This is a belated married bio, with no reviews yet because I'm lazy.

    image
    Sometimes I feel like people think that brides are delicate little flower princesses who get all dressed up and pretty for one special moment of their dreams, when really they're just normal people who just happen to be getting married. Things shouldn't have to be sugar-coated for grown-ass women. -mstar284
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    I don't disagree with you filaw, but if ALL her BMs are revolting, she's doing something wrong.  
    Courtesy of megk8oz
    image
    "I think bablingbrooke is the 13 yr old marring her cousin at the town hall. Lets all give her a big hand. And hope her inbred children can live normal lives." -tabs.

    A word of warning from your friends at Cracked.com: Remember that text is going to be how you make your first impression over the internet; if every third word you type is misspelled, people will automatically assume that you're a moron.
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