Etiquette

Bridesmaid Question?

Here's the deal, just the other day one of my bridesmaids texted me to let me know that she would not be getting us a "super-duper awesome" wedding gift till late in the summer (her words, btw) and pretty much implied that she wouldn't be able to afford one for the bridal shower either. I've pretty much tried to make things as easy on the bridesmaids as possible-they paid for their dress (159.00 and they all collectively chose it), told them they could wear any silver sandals that they wanted (just not flipflops), we'll be making their jewelry (which I am paying for), optional hair/make-up, my mom is hosting the bridal shower pretty much....they just needed to come up with 6 centerpieces for tables, games, and some small prizes which my MOH has actually handled all on her own (without an issue). I also know they plan to do a bachelorette party for me, but that will also be low-key due to financial reasons.
Now, I'm not upset that she can't afford a gift as we are not expecting gifts from 3/4 of our friends who attend the wedding. Most of them are on tight budgets so we already have our expectations set-even some of my friends who I invited to the bridal shower will probably not bring a gift. Yes, I KNOW its a gift so therefore there is never a requirement to give one :) However, it does irritate me when those same friends complain about the amount of alcohol we're going to be having at the wedding as some feel we won't have enough of what they like to drink specifically-we are having the recommended amount and we checked online, with the vendor, and with a beer distributor, lol.
My question is, should she have even said anything about not getting us a gift? If it was me I would not have even brought it up...just sent the gift later (which I doubt will happen anyways). When she told me this I just told her that her presence at wedding related events and her help with wedding stuff was gift enough....
Plus she even complained about taking time off of work for wedding stuff-which thus far the only wedding stuff that I would hope she would take off of work for will be bridal shower (4 hours max including set-up/clean-up), bachelorette party (one evening), rehearsal dinner, and wedding which is all spread out except for the rehearsal dinner/wedding (those are only about 6 days apart due to consideration for FMIL's schedule). Plus I know for a fact that she has turned down addtional work shifts because she preferred to go out or go to a concert-and yes, I know we are not supposed to judge how others spend their money, but don't complain about being broke then (and she does, on her facebook status-alot, lol). So did I handle the gift situation correctly and should one EVER tell someone that they are unable to bring a gift due to lack of funds?

Re: Bridesmaid Question?

  • she is your friend.  maybe whatever she want to give you is not available until later, maybe she feels bad and that's why she told you.  It isn't a big deal.  You do seem judgy of your friend and her lifestyle.  Everyone's work schedules are different, and yes people have different priorities.  I would much rather take off a day of work to see a concert I really want to see than for a shower or rehersal. 

    Take a deep breath, relax and don't worry about all this.
  • sparent2010sparent2010 member
    1000 Comments
    edited April 2012
    That was... long. C/N BM cannot afford present now and told that. OP told her that her being there for wedding/wedding related events is gift enough. Her questions are did she handle the situation correctly and should one ever mention that they cannot give a gift.

    1- Yes what you said is fine
    2- I don't think it matters maybe she wanted you to know that she is planning to give you something but cannot  afford it right now. Really it is no big deal.

    3- This you didn't ask but you don't need to judge people on how they spend their time or money. If she wants to take every day off to go party it up it really is none of your business. Is it annoying? Probably but it is still not your call.
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  • Should she have told you?  I suppose that depends.  If she hadn't given you a gift at the wedding, would you be sitting there wondering where it was?  Answer that question honestly.  If the answer is yes, then I'm glad she told you.  You are saving her from enduring another tantrum by you involving a gift.

    Be glad she's taking time off work to be there for you.  Her presence is all that is required (you say so yourself but I'm not sure you believe it), so just be happy with that.  Gift, no gift... whatever. 
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:cc401ca2-1ad6-49c4-84e9-227556615239">Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Here's the deal, just the other day one of my bridesmaids texted me to let me know that she would not be getting us a "super-duper awesome" wedding gift till late in the summer (her words, btw) and pretty much implied that she wouldn't be able to afford one for the bridal shower either. I've pretty much tried to make things as easy on the bridesmaids as possible-they paid for their dress (159.00 and they all collectively chose it), told them they could wear any silver sandals that they wanted (just not flipflops), we'll be making their jewelry (which I am paying for), optional hair/make-up, my mom is hosting the bridal shower pretty much....they just needed to come up with 6 centerpieces for tables, games, and some small prizes which my MOH has actually handled all on her own (without an issue). I also know they plan to do a bachelorette party for me, but that will also be low-key due to financial reasons. Now, I'm not upset that she can't afford a gift as we are not expecting gifts from 3/4 of our friends who attend the wedding. Most of them are on tight budgets so we already have our expectations set-even some of my friends who I invited to the bridal shower will probably not bring a gift. Yes, I KNOW its a gift so therefore there is never a requirement to give one :) However, it does irritate me when those same friends complain about the amount of alcohol we're going to be having at the wedding as some feel we won't have enough of what they like to drink specifically-we are having the recommended amount and we checked online, with the vendor, and with a beer distributor, lol.<strong> My question is, should she have even said anything about not getting us a gift? </strong>If it was me I would not have even brought it up...just sent the gift later (which I doubt will happen anyways). When she told me this I just told her that her presence at wedding related events and her help with wedding stuff was gift enough.... Plus she even complained about taking time off of work for wedding stuff-which thus far the only wedding stuff that I would hope she would take off of work for will be bridal shower (4 hours max including set-up/clean-up), bachelorette party (one evening), rehearsal dinner, and wedding which is all spread out except for the rehearsal dinner/wedding (those are only about 6 days apart due to consideration for FMIL's schedule). <strong>Plus I know for a fact that she has turned down addtional work shifts because she preferred to go out or go to a concert-and yes, I know we are not supposed to judge how others spend their money, but don't complain about being broke then (and she does, on her facebook status-alot, lol).</strong> So did I handle the gift situation correctly and should one EVER tell someone that they are unable to bring a gift due to lack of funds?
    Posted by ShyDreamer00[/QUOTE]

     I think she probably felt that you would wonder why she didn't bring a gift so she wanted to let you know why she would come empty handed.  I don't think she was being intentionally hurtful but instead, was trying to prevent you from getting upset. That's not what YOU would have done but she did so you just got to shake it off. 

    You've already said it yourself - don't judge.   I also honestly got to ask that if you're not really concerned about the gifts, then why post about it at all? If you know that gifts aren't required then why worry if you handled it correctly or try to analyze the situation?
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
    "So I sing a song of love, Julia"
    06.10.10

    BFAR:We Defined Our Own Success!
    image

  • Sorry-I know the post was long and venting, lol!
    Actually, her presence is all thats required although I will admit when I first started the planning process I had alot higher expectations-due to lurking on posts and such, I have found out much differently (thank you ladies). I have tried to re-adjust my expectations and done my best to move on. This is why I ask questions/vent on her because if I was to say such things to my friend I would possibly lose her friendship-plus I value your feedback.

    And to be honest, if she didn't complain about being broke all of time I wouldn't be so "judgy" as I can see where she is able to save money. Trust me, its not just one concert here or there, its about every other week plus bars during the week, etc. Alot of our friends are broke/don't have jobs/have kids/live at home with parents so we just stopped our expectations regarding the wedding, but if I have to hear one more complaint about alcohol for the wedding (along the lines of-ohhh, you're ONLY going to have 5 bottles of rum) then I will go off-lol!
    We all have different priorities in life and I know that she is at a different stage than what I'm at (I'm older, have a kid, etc). Sorry is there a vent forum on here? Maybe I will post there next time! lol
  • Mrs.B6302007-To answer your question about the gift, I have had to come to a wedding empty handed before and never said anything, but sent a gift later on. I felt horribly guilty for attending without a gift in hand (just how my parents raised me) in that if you can't afford a gift for a function that its "kind of" expected that you probably shouldn't attend. I have ALWAYS brought a gift as for me and my family its a breach of etiquette to not do so...I'm not trying to sound uppity or snobby, but that's just how I was raised. Like I said in my PP I have tried to adjust my expectations and thats why I wondered about the etiquette for such things.
  • Why do your friends know how many bottles of rum you're going to have?  Just don't tell them any more details about the wedding.
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
    "So I sing a song of love, Julia"
    06.10.10

    BFAR:We Defined Our Own Success!
    image

  • Mrs.B6302007-My friends were asking about the alcohol to see if their would be an open bar, so I explained that we were paying for our own alcohol and bringing it to the vendor for the reception (trust me, I realize now that it was a big mistake to share with them), especially since they were just trying to see how much free alcohol there would be. It was my fault for sharing and I WILL NOT be divulging any more details about that. However, it doesn't stop them from bringing it up on occasion :(
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:cfc4956c-4c6e-4cb6-80f5-1ff6fe9da4fe">Re: Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Mrs.B6302007 -To answer your question about the gift, I have had to come to a wedding empty handed before and never said anything, but sent a gift later on. I felt horribly guilty for attending without a gift in hand (just how my parents raised me) in that if you can't afford a gift for a function that its "kind of" expected that you probably shouldn't attend. I have ALWAYS brought a gift as for me and my family its a breach of etiquette to not do so...I'm not trying to sound uppity or snobby, but that's just how I was raised. Like I said in my PP I have tried to adjust my expectations and thats why I wondered about the etiquette for such things.
    Posted by ShyDreamer00[/QUOTE]

    I get that  but if you know that gifts aren't required and you've adjusted your expectations, then why question it at all?  I don't really think that there is an etiquette<em> </em>issue here.
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
    "So I sing a song of love, Julia"
    06.10.10

    BFAR:We Defined Our Own Success!
    image

  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:5447fe3c-498d-4b79-9b87-3468b020a26c">Re: Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Mrs.B6302007 -My friends were asking about the alcohol to see if their would be an open bar, so I explained that we were paying for our own alcohol and bringing it to the vendor for the reception (trust me, I realize now that it was a big mistake to share with them), especially since they were just trying to see how much free alcohol there would be. It was my fault for sharing and I WILL NOT be divulging any more details about that. However, it doesn't stop them from bringing it up on occasion :(
    Posted by ShyDreamer00[/QUOTE]

    Yeah, they need to MTOB.  Try not to let them get under your skin. =-)
    The Bee Hive Est. June 30, 2007
    "So I sing a song of love, Julia"
    06.10.10

    BFAR:We Defined Our Own Success!
    image

  • Megan+AdamMegan+Adam member
    10 Comments
    edited April 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:fb38cb37-2908-45f3-aa9d-3213e4577971">Re: Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]And to be honest, if she didn't complain about being broke all of time I wouldn't be so "judgy" as I can see where she is able to save money. Trust me, its not just one concert here or there, its about every other week plus bars during the week, etc.
    Posted by ShyDreamer00[/QUOTE]
    <div>This is none of your business. It's her money she can spend however she wants. Saying stuff like that just makes you look rude. </div><div>
    </div><div>[QUOTE] but if I have to hear one more complaint about alcohol for the wedding (along the lines of-ohhh, you're ONLY going to have 5 bottles of rum) then I will go off-lol! [/QUOTE]</div><div>
    </div><div>This would piss me off to no end too. I'd stop telling people how much of each bottle you're getting since it seems they're only going to complain anyway. </div><div>
    </div>
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:a54abb6d-dfcd-4e23-81de-0e8b1b542e7a">Re: Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Why do your friends know how many bottles of rum you're going to have?  Just don't tell them any more details about the wedding.
    Posted by Mrs.B6302007[/QUOTE]
    This.


    Everyone lives differently.  I have a friend that saves and scrimps and goes on family vacations often.  They don't have an income that would lead people to believe that they could afford it, but her saving on other things allows it and these vacations are what she values...time away with her family.

    People make comments about our cd collection and movie collections (they are rather large), but we don't go out and spend money at bars, like our other friends. 

    Everything is relative.  It seems like going to concerts is what your friend enjoys.  You enjoy other things.  Don't try to put your needs on others. 
  • AdeleDazeemAdeleDazeem member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 25 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited April 2012
    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:cfc4956c-4c6e-4cb6-80f5-1ff6fe9da4fe">Re: Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]. I have ALWAYS brought a gift as for me and my family its a breach of etiquette to not do so...I'm not trying to sound uppity or snobby, but that's just how I was raised.
    Posted by ShyDreamer00[/QUOTE]

    I was raised this way as well, but I would be heart broken if a friend turned down coming to my wedding because she couldn't afford a gift, especially if the host/bride and groom/whomever made her feel badly about it!

    I have long ago friends from the NYC area who keep spreadsheets on what people gave and comment if others don't give the same or don't give anything at all.  These people make me sick and are no longer my friends.  I'm just offering some perspective since you are host of sorts - don't judge if your friend can't bring a gift for whatever reason.  Be the bigger person.

    You're taking our comments well :-)  I understand that sometimes you just need to vent!
  • I have a few friends that complain a lot in general.  It sounds like that's what she does.  Just remember that if she complains about everything, it's not personal, and try to remember why you are such great friends with her to begin with.

  • Thank you ladies-I appreciate the feedback! The only etiquette part of the question was whether she should have said something to me about not being able to afford to bring a gift (and yes, she said that specifically also) or kept mum about it :) And I related to that since I had been unable to afford a wedding gift at or before the wedding I attended, but sent one afterwards. However, I didn't know whether I should have said anything or not about not being able to afford a gift at the time (like to the groom's mom prior to the event.) I didn't attend the bridal shower either due to the fact that I didn't have money for a gift, nor did I know the bride very well (FI side of the family-it was his first cousin's wife).

    Trust me, I would be upset if she didn't attend the wedding (especially since she is a bridesmaid) and I have a better understanding of things since joining this community :) I have never said anything that I've posted on here to her or anyone else, but I wanted to ask (and vent a little). I now realize I was being a little bit judgy, but I wanted some feedback regarding the situation and you graciously gave it-thanks!
  • Being a bridesmaid can really take a toll. All this time and money spent and the bride still expects more. She obviously doesn't have a lot of money, and she genuinely wanted you to know she can't get you a gift til later. Its none of your business if she doesn't take extra shifts and wants to go out instead. She doesn't have to work extra hours to afford YOUR wedding.
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  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_bridesmaid-question-5?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:de90d017-57b0-4006-ae01-8aa307fcc77dPost:8f1e3d8a-bc91-4dc9-8a5e-581c7ccec7b9">Re:Bridesmaid Question?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Being a bridesmaid can really take a toll. All this time and money spent and the bride still expects more. She obviously doesn't have a lot of money, and she genuinely wanted you to know she can't get you a gift til later. Its none of your business if she doesn't take extra shifts and wants to go out instead. She doesn't have to work extra hours to afford YOUR wedding.
    Posted by hannahmassey[/QUOTE]
     
    I agree to some extent with what you are saying, but in some sense she does have to be able to afford my wedding (not in the gift sense), but in the expenses tied into being a bridesmaid. Essentially a dress, shoes, and should they decide to pitch in with a shower/bachelorette party as that's on them. I've always thought and been taught that a bridal shower and bachelorette party falls on the shoulders of the bridesmaids-yes, I've been one before and did all of the above. Just to make things clear-I asked my bridesmaids to participate in the wedding in August 2011, I explained that we would probably go dress shopping in February 2012(around tax time for most of them), looked at some dresses a couple months beforehand with a variety of price-ranges so that they would know the different options (they picked the dress out of the ones I liked), making their jewelry/hair pieces for them (no, that is not their bridal party gift either), silver sandals (whatever fits in their price-range), alterations are being done by FMIL for free, and have tried to make everything as cheap as possible for them. I have also given each bridal party member the option to bring a guest or their SO. Now, my friend is choosing to bring a girlfriend that she wants to set up with one of our mutual friends at the wedding-so I said no problem.

    I told all of them ahead of time of the dates and what the expenses for the wedding would be on their part: This way I tried to avoid any drama or people dropping out, situations do change, but hers has not. My matron of honor dropped out in March due to financial reasons and that she's pregnant, but I have an awesome maid of honor. I'm asking for 4 days (not even full days for most of them) for them to participate in, which I really don't think is alot. As I said the only thing that she has paid for thus far is her dress and maybe her shoes. My MOH and one of our mutual friends bought and have done what is needed for the bridal shower (some centerpieces, games, and small prizes)...no expense for the other bridesmaids there either. So while she may not have ALOT of money, some of the responsibility does fall on her shoulders for accepting the role when I told her what to expect ahead of time. I have tried to make things as cheap or accommodating as possible for everyone involved-I even had the bridal shower date moved because with the original date picked she said she was planning to go to a weekend concert and I really wanted her to be there.

    I apologize for the rant, it does just irritate me when someone makes it seem like I am asking for alot, when I really don't see it that way (don't know if the comment was intended towards me as a bride or just brides in general). I don't have alot of help, except for the MOH who has tried to be with me every step of the way (she works and is in school full-time though). My parents are paying for the wedding, but both are exceptionally busy so they pretty much just hand me money to pay for stuff when I ask (I'm fortunate for that). I'm not trying to have a pity party for me either in this post, but trying to speak up for the brides who do try to be accommodating.
    And I already figure someone will see me as being a bridezilla with this post-ah well, I guess we all have different views, lol.
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