The Frugal Bridesmaid

by TTMK on September 17, 2012 · 4 comments

A Bridezilla is often a source of amusement and sometimes fear to onlookers.  A person who is so irrationally consumed with “her big day”, that she is overflowing with stress, emotions, and crazy behavior.  All, of course, wrapped up in excessive demands and attempts to micromanage and control everything.

I recently heard someone tell a story, at a group lunch, about how she had to deal with one of these types of controlling brides. Actually, it was a bride-to-be she was dealing with, but the situation was just as challenging. Except in this case, the issue was money, and the woman telling the story was a bridesmaid.

The bridesmaid was complaining about how her friend, who was the bride, didn’t understand how the cost of being a bridesmaid could be quite high.  Apparently, it was a big deal to her, since she had been asked to be in 4 weddings this year alone.  Must be a good friend, right?

Anyway, being a part of 4 weddings must have the potential to be very tough on cash flow.  This is what the woman was saying, as she rattled on a list of expenses that come with being in a wedding.  Ultimately, she ended up sharing what caused the specific conflict with her friend.

When asked to be in the wedding, she said “Yes!”.  Then, she nicely (I assume) told the friend that she was on a budget, since she had 3 other weddings that she was involved in this year.  So, she conveyed that she couldn’t participate in every single wedding-related function.  As in, she could do one wedding shower, a bachelorette party, and the wedding weekend festivities.

The friend didn’t like that.  She didn’t pull back her invitation to be in the wedding party, but was apparently quite snarky toward the new bridesmaid.  All over her proclamation that she didn’t want to be a part of every single extra event, due to cost concerns.

I’m on the side of the bridesmaid here.  I don’t think there is anything wrong with being honest and saying that you are on a budget.  Sure, perhaps she could have said this before accepting.  Nevertheless, her candor and legitimate reasons should have been understandable to the bride.  I think the bride was behaving like one of those toxic people we previously discussed here!

But, being a guy, I’ve never been a bridesmaid and never will.  Groomsman multiples times, yes  – but those expenses weren’t too crazy.  So given that, I ask you the following questions:

  1. Do you think the bridesmaid was reasonable in how she handled this? Or, do you think that the bride was justified in being upset.
  2. Do you think that the high cost of being a bridesmaid is enough of a reason to turn down the honor of participating?



{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Kathleen @ Frugal Portland September 17, 2012 at 11:51 am

The cost is absolutely high enough to say thanks but no thanks to a wedding party. Also I would not recommend ever being a bridesmaid for someone who thinks it’s appropriate to belittle you.


TTMK September 17, 2012 at 9:50 pm

Kathleen – yes, it wouldn’t be the best thing to be standing up in a wedding for someone who would belittle you. I agree. I wonder if the stress of planning a wedding causes some brides-to-be to become a bit unhinged and wildly sensitive toward things like this? Who knows.


Emily @ evolvingPF September 17, 2012 at 9:03 pm

I’m definitely on the side of the bridesmaid. And I do think the cost is a good reason to turn down being a bridesmaid, but I think if the woman could attend the wedding on her own dime the bride should consider paying for the dress and whatnot so her friend can be in the wedding party. Being a bridesmaid doesn’t have to entail a super high cost unless there is travel involved or the bride expects to have lavish parties thrown in her honor. When I asked my MOH to be in that position she accepted but clearly stated that she could only travel to our town for the wedding and not for any other parties, which I think was perfectly appropriate – in fact we did not have any showers or other events outside of the wedding weekend itself.


TTMK September 17, 2012 at 9:52 pm

Emily – that sounds fair what you’re sharing about your MOH. We all have different financial means, and good friends are supportive of each others’ individual situatins.


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