Your wedding is supposed to be the happiest day in your life. But with all the pressure for it to be perfect, stress and sleepless nights, things more often than not go sour. Blame it on the bad weather, lack of planning, mercury in retrograde, or bridesmaids… speaking of whom, that’s who this post is really about.
You are probably familiar with the corner of Reddit called “Wedding Shaming” where people gather to roast failed weddings, from tacky dresses to indecent behavior. With 312k members, it’s Reddit’s destination to blow off that steam if you just returned from a wedding you’d much rather have missed. This time, brides are sharing the worst bridesmaid stories that happened during their weddings both on the subreddit and this Ask Reddit thread.
The stories below make you wonder how important it is to choose your close friends and family members so you don’t end up with a stolen spotlight and a bad memory.
To find out more about what it means to be a perfect bridesmaid and how common drama during wedding preparation is, as well as how to avoid it, Bored Panda spoke with the person who knows it all: Jen Glantz, the founder of Bridesmaid for Hire and The Newlywed Card Game, a 3x best-selling author, a voice of You’re Not Getting Any Younger podcast, and the brains behind Jen & Juice coaching, digital courses, & the Pick-Me-Up newsletter.
Glantz said that while we might think there’s unity and peace inside of bridal parties, they are actually filled with conflict and drama. “That’s because weddings are filled with decisions, pop-up challenges, and a lot of emotions. When you bring your friends and family into that equation and ask them to stand by your side, while also giving them a to-do list of things you expect them to do during your wedding adventure, it can bring a level of intensity that didn’t exist before the wedding within that relationship,” she explained.
A lot of conflicts happen because of lack of communication and expectations, Glantz argues. “So much can be avoided if the person getting married clearly states what they want from their bridal party and the people in the bridal party openly share what they are able and willing to do before the wedding process even starts.”When asked about what it takes to be the perfect bridesmaid for the bride, Glantz said it’s so much like being a good friend. “Before you even say yes to being a bridesmaid, have a game plan in mind,” she said.
Glantz’s advice is to reflect on a couple of things: “Understand how much time, money, and energy you can spend on this person’s wedding adventure. Say no to things you can’t afford or can’t do. Be upfront and don’t be scared to be honest about your expectations in the role.” Moreover, Glantz argues that “if the person getting married gets mad at you because you can’t afford to take three days off work and spend $1,500 on her bachelorette party, then the friendship has bigger issues.”
“Also, as a bridesmaid, it’s important to practice some selflessness in the tough moments. Be there for the person getting married and support them. Let things go that don’t really matter so you can help your friend get through the wedding. For example, if you’re getting your hair done on the morning of the wedding but it’s not perfect, rather than holding up the wedding timeline for you to get it re-done and bringing attention to it (which can stress the bride out), fix it privately yourself and move on,” the life coach and Bridesmaid for Hire explained.
When it comes to deciding who you want to have as a bridesmaid, Glantz suggests thinking about this: “who would you want to get stuck in an elevator with for 4 hours? Those are the people who should be your bridesmaids. Pick people who make you feel calm and loved.” She added that it’s not a good idea to pick people because you feel obligated to.
For the bride who feels very pressured to have the most perfect day in their life, Glantz reminds that no wedding is perfect, just like no day in your life is. “Instead, think about practicing ways to go with the flow, handle emotions, and rebalance expectations before your big day comes to life.”
“In the end, you’re celebrating a new step you’re taking in your relationship. That’s all that matters. If the flowers don’t look right or a bridesmaid is causing drama, let it go, focus on the good, and have a good time. You staying present and celebrating the good will outshine what goes wrong on your wedding day,” the life coach concluded.
I’ll try to keep this short. My supposed best friend “E” was a toxic friend but I was still in the 16yr friendship at the time of my wedding, urgh.
I didn’t want a hen do & my hubby didn’t want a stagger so we just had a wee pre-wedding party, it was just cheesey good natured fun including games and stuff. I totally understand that’s not everyone’s idea of fun but, y’know… it was our wedding. She sat apart from us all, audibly making fun of everything we did but I just ignored her because she was always nasty & insufferably ‘cool’ & I didn’t want drama when my sister had organised it & we were having fun.
“E” has stretched ear lobes so I asked her if she wouldn’t mind wearing flesh coloured plugs and earrings to match the other girls. She said yes but on the day she said she’d lost the plugs I’d bought her and had in obnoxiously large black things that really drew your eye but I’m not a maniac, these things happen & I didn’t really care that much…. until I found out she’d been making fun of how she loved throwing the plugs in the bin and that I’m such an idiot, I’d believe her. Why wouldn’t I since I’d only asked her to do it for me as a favour because I liked the earring I bought my bridesmaids, I would never demand someone change their appearance for me.
On my wedding day, she waltzed into breakfast at the venue in her pyjamas with a bucket, claiming she had a migraine and was going to be spewing all day. I knew she was faking because it’s nearly impossible to fake a full on migraine while you’re walking about talking to people & laughing. I suggested that she can go lie down in one of the bedrooms but she aggressively said “I guess I’ll just have to deal with it but I’ll need to have a bucket at the ceremony”. My sister told her that wasn’t an acceptable option and if she needed to go home that could be arranged for her but she didn’t go home nor show any further signs of a migraine. She was snippy for the whole rest of the day & made a scene on the dance floor at night by doing an unplanned choreographed dance with her new friend to a song that we used to dance to when we went out at weekends as kids. It was a kick in the teeth although I was too happy to get upset. Our friendship was never the same after that day & she ended up finishing the friendship in a storm of drama just after I had my first kid. She’s an awful person.
I chose my sisters, which was the biggest mistake.
They fought me on every single decision when it came to the dress. Everyone they chose looked too casual or was very inappropriate for a wedding (think either a faux leather peplum dress from Guess, or a casual Wilfred dress from Aritzia). After I searched for weeks online and at stores, they finally agreed on one from Nordstrom which I had to order and take care of. They fought me on any “duties” or helping with any sort of prep. They showed up for 4 hours the day before. Argued on any placement of decorations and took off after I begged everyone to do a short rehearsal. Even though I told them I needed help. (Keep in mind they did not have to travel for the wedding, my husband and I arranged it so WE were the only ones who had to travel far). No bridal shower, no bachelorette party. They claimed they were too busy. A friend offered to throw one and they told her no, they would plan one…they never did. Two nights before the wedding, I told them I booked reservations for us and my mom at a local pub just to have something. I ended up having to cancel because they didn’t want too. (My mom enabled and justified a lot of their behavior. And she wonders why I felt like they were the favourites growing up). The day of they did not help me at all get ready at all. My photographers were amazing who did everything from help me finish my hair and make up
(they even ran out to get me new lashes because mine got wrecked) and get me into my dress. And, at the reception, they made a toast…which was so awkward. It was basically about who should have been the maid of honour and basically being all about them. I remember looking out and peoples faces were just cringing. At the end I just focused on having fun the rest of the night and ignoring them.
Looking back, I should have not had them. I came pretty close to having a bridezilla moment, because I was just so fed up. All they did was go dress shopping with me once, they went out one afternoon to look for bridesmaid dresses which they didn’t find any, I had too. They showed up a the hall for 4 hours to set up, and they showed up at the wedding. That was it. Anything additional I asked, I got told no. Or, any plans I tried to make to have a bit of fun before I was told no. I had a couple friends who step up big time the weeks before, and I felt so shitty because I should have asked them.
I chose my best friend of 16 years to be my maid of honor. Big mistake on my part as she has a strong personality, can be very controlling, and is studying to be a lawyer, so she believes she can never be wrong.
About 4 months ago, my fiancé and I were thinking it over and decided it’d be cheaper and easier to just have a backyard wedding to save some money, as we were due to spend at least $16k at our current venue. I told my MOH about it, thinking she’d be supportive, but instead she just s**t all over the idea. She called it trashy and a “glorified graduation party”.
Thinking it would do no harm I asked her mom if it’d be a possibility for us to have the wedding in her backyard. Due to liability reasons she declined. The next day my MOH confronts me and calls me a sh**ty person and selfish for going behind her back and asking her mom. They don’t have the best relationship, but they still talk every now and then and I really thought it wouldn’t be an issue. I apologized over and over to my friend, while she repeatedly told me I was stupid and didn’t know how to use my f*****g brain and didn’t know what I was doing. I finally ended the conversation by basically kicking her out of the wedding party.
We’re now getting married in 3 months on the beach in Florida, with a small set of close friends and family. Either my friend doesn’t know, or she does and hasn’t bothered to confront me about it. I’ve only spoken to her once since our fight a few months ago – to wish her a happy birthday and she was a complete d**k to me. Sad to say I lost one of my best friends over my own wedding, because I didn’t agree with her.
And she called me the selfish one…
I was pretty young when I got married, got engaged my senior year of college and got married the summer out of college. We’re in the South, so it’s not uncommon for that to happen.
Had a bridesmaid who had been a somewhat close friend. Her boyfriend (of 6 months, but they “had known each other for longer”) had not proposed to her yet, and she would consistently take her frustration about that out on me. Saying things like how they “deserve” to get married first since they knew each other longer than my now husband and I (which, I might add was false), saying nasty, damning with faint praise things to me. Insulting my body, insulting me in general, little caustic comments that would just hurt honestly. It got really out of hand. She finally stopped talking to me and would purposely leave me out of things that our friend group would do. She was a very homely type of person, and a big part of a Church crowd which made things so much worse imo. She constantly acted holier than thou and many people saw her “innocence” as kindness and assumed she was nice just because she was Churchy.
About a month or so later, I confronted her about it. I told her that I felt like our friendship was dwindling and I didn’t understand why. I told her how I felt and that if it was something I had done that I’d do my best to amend it. She flipped out saying “she wasn’t jealous but she just knew what was right and wrong”, inferring that her relationship was “better” somehow. It was absolutely mad. I asked her if she even wanted to be in the wedding at this point. She said she did, she really did and never even apologized. Looking back on this situation I should’ve never asked her in the first place. She suddenly went cold-Turkey ignoring me. I finally asked if she and I could talk and she acquiesced. I “fired” her from being a bridesmaid. I felt horrible about it. I truly did. At the same time, I couldn’t handle all the straight up bullying I was taking. I never once yelled at her, never once called her any names. She told everyone I yelled at her and called her a b***h. 😂 Even if I had, that would’ve been nothing compared to the s**t I endured from her.
My other bridesmaids were amazing and really took my side on this. She finally got engaged and married to that dude and I hope she’s happy now. Jesus she made my life miserable for a solid 6 months.
tl;dr lesson – if you choose to have bridesmaids, pick only the people you know you’ll be close to for years to come. And don’t let people bully you!