Always the Bridesmaid?

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By Eva Rutland. 21.06.2016

twobirds6
(Two Birds Bridesmaids)

Always the Bridesmaid?

Weddings are such a magical, joyful time, bringing all your loved ones together to bask in your happiness (unless you’re a character in EastEnders, in which case you’re probably just about to find out your sister’s your mother, your father’s your uncle and your groom is your long lost brother but I digress!!).

Post-engagement life is a heady whirlwind of congratulations, celebrations and smiling so much your face aches. Your family and friends are as thrilled as you are and it’s now time for the planning to begin. You always imagined your best and oldest childhood friend was going to be your chief bridesmaid / matron of honor. Okay, so you moved away for work a few years ago and you don’t get to see each other as much as you’d like, but there is no-one else you’d rather have by your side on the most important day of your life. So that’s that sorted, first box ticked, except… your mum thought you were going to ask your sister, your gran thought you were going to ask your sister and your sister thought you were going to ask her too.

And then there’s your work best friend / housemate / uni friend who you actually spend more time with than your real BFF. She’s the one who you ring at 3am when you can’t find your Uber app (let’s be honest, we’ve all been there!); who holds your hair back when you’re being sick after that ‘one quick drink after work’; who has lived through the minutiae of your everyday life – relationship worries, health scares, work problems, family dramas; who always has a cup of tea and almond croissant waiting on your desk when you race through the door with your latest tale of commuter rush hour woe. Of course, she’s far too good a friend to say anything but you can just feel those hurt vibes emanating from her. And all this is even before you make a decision on the rest of your bridesmaids – although truth be told you weren’t sure if you even wanted anymore! So how do you make the choice without upsetting anyone? Truthfully, you probably can’t, but there are things you can do to lessen the blow.

  1. Make like Monica Geller! If there’s a close knit group of you, why not alternate? Make a real evening of it by having some dinner together and then sticking your names into a hat, chance will dictate who gets who and everybody will get a turn
  2. Indisputable fact – blood is ultimately thicker than water. By the simple expedient of playing the family trump card, all other grievances are rendered null and void
  3. Go forth and multiply! Just because it isn’t the standard, there is no reason why you can’t be a trailblazer and have multiple CB’s / MOH’s. It’s your wedding and your call. Alternatively, have no CB / MOH and just have everyone as a bridesmaid with no hierarchy – democracy at its best!
  4. Give everyone a specific task dependent on their strengths and passions. Your friend who always looks fabulous – arm her with a clutch bag full of blotting paper, hair grips and lip gloss. She’ll be in charge of making sure you never look anything less than the Goddess you are on your big day. Your friend who the lost child in the supermarket gravitates towards is in charge of keeping an eye on all of the children. Party animal friend – hen night. Sister – emotional support and pre-empting any family friction. Everyone is in charge of something – all different, all equally vital.

As we always tell our brides when it comes down to it, it’s your day so you really must follow your heart. Your friends and family love you. Honesty, truth and an explanation usually dissipates any bad feelings (a life tip that a lot of men could do with taking on board!) as it allows people to understand why and how you made your decision. And if all else fails…

  1. Let them decide – you’ve seen the Hunger Games, right?!

Check out our Bridesmaids Board for more inspiration!

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