You’ve just heard the news. A squealing, emotional call rings through and it turns out there’s going to be a wedding
You’ve just heard the news. A squealing, emotional call rings through and it turns out there’s going to be a wedding. Her wedding. You are very happy for her. You somehow managed to cut in with a word of congratulations right before the call went dead and she’s off to share the news with another.
What you may or may not understand is that the bride is in a state of wedding
What you may or may not understand is that the bride is in a state of wedding bliss. A rush of emotions and expectations has just flooded her entire existence and she is now on top of the world. After all, she has been waiting for this moment her entire life. The shoebox that she filled with wedding articles, beautiful bridal gown pictures and flower arrangements will now come in handy. The days spent clunking along in her mother’s high heels, parading about the house with a plastic tiara on, was just practice for her soon to be wedding day. That call has been decades in the making.
Turning back to your magazine and tea, you smile, weddings are fun. Free food and drinks, you can’t wait. Weddings are always a great day to look forward to. This is where the buzzer sounds. You’ve just committed deadly wedding sin number one.
No matter if you are a bridesmaid, a friend, a sister or a mother
No matter if you are a bridesmaid, a friend, a sister or a mother when you catch wind of a wedding, be prepared to spring into action. Most people don’t realize that a wedding announcement, whether a verbal or actual engagement invitation, is a two-way conversation. While you may be looking forward to the wedding day itself, there are quite a few days in-between now and then that she desperately needs your help with.
Most weddings take a year to plan
Most weddings take a year to plan. This means that 365 days from the beginning of her engagement to the commencement of her vows, a full time job awaits completion. And she can’t do it alone. Even if it is a job that you never interviewed for, or one that you didn’t even want, as a part of the bride’s life you have certain obligations. Caring and showing interest in her big day is one of the best gifts you can give her. On the flip side, if you think that it’s not your obligation to ask questions or to act interested in her big day, be very aware that you are treading on very thin ice. The bride may not confront you, but she has noticed your behavior and her hurt feelings will not fade easily. If you don’t get it together, a strained relationship may await you after she becomes the Mrs., so don’t be shocked if you are left off the invitation list for future celebrations.
If you want to play nice and keep your relationship with the bride intact
If you want to play nice and keep your relationship with the bride intact, be sure that you don’t just throw your hands up in the air and nonchalantly say, “Whatever you want, I really don’t care.” Apathy is like poison to a bride. You have to show some form of interest. If she has a dress fitting ask if she needs someone to go along. If she has her seventeenth interview with a different wedding singer, offer to fall victim to the never-ending elimination process. Sometimes just asking is all that she truly wants. Most of the time she will turn down your offer, but will be grateful that you even cared to ask.
But weddings aren’t your thing, right?
But weddings aren’t your thing, right? Or maybe you don’t have the time to pitch in a few Saturdays and help her make wedding invitations. When it comes to celebrating an engagement and planning a wedding, you absolutely have to remember that it is all about the bride. It really does not have much to do with you. So what if you don’t like salmon or if you think that mashed potatoes as opposed to baked are much more wedding chic? It may be entirely true that the pink napkins clash with the red linens, but this is the one time to keep your mouth shut and just comply.
You see, to the bride, the color of the ribbon in the bridesmaid’s hair
You see, to the bride, the color of the ribbon in the bridesmaid’s hair to the flecks of blush in the groomsmen’s boutonniere, are all reflections of her. Supporting her in these little decisions, make her feel as if you care about who she is. To her, this wedding is not just a day in the year; it is the one moment in her life where everything comes together in a perfect array of her identity. Her wedding defines who she has become and who she is becoming. This wedding day is a metaphorical vehicle that provides a crossroads where her past, present and future convene.
Your support in helping the bride create her dream wedding
Your support in helping the bride create her dream wedding doesn’t mean that you can’t have opinions. In fact, she may appreciate a thoughtful addition here and there, just be careful to keep it within reason. This can get out of hand, especially with soon-to-be mother in laws and mothers of the bride. For some reason, moms feel as if this wedding is their last chance to amend what they hated about their own weddings. Times change, and just because a mother didn’t get to have the enormously puffy sleeves she had always wanted, doesn’t mean that forcing the bride to get them will change the past. No matter what your opinion is, mother or not, do not bombard the bride with your personal agenda.
Another common complaint about being a by-stander of the bride is the constant wedding chatter
Another common complaint about being a by-stander of the bride is the constant wedding chatter. No matter what the situation, be cautioned that you will have to talk about the wedding. A lot. You could be getting your oil changed and the bride-to-be can somehow work the wedding photographer, the flower girl dress, and the price of the caterer into casual conversation. By the time the wedding rolls around, she may have developed this ability to an art. It’s not that she doesn’t care about anything else going on in the world, it’s just that while she is in the matrimony coma, she might not notice. Your best bet is to graciously deal with all things leading back to the wedding. Just know that until her day has passed, her crab cake appetizers might be the highlight of your evening chats.
Let’s recap: Do not be a member of the Aloof Troop. Once the bride announces her engagement be willing to help and be interested in all the happenings of the wedding. Even if you are matrimonially clueless, make something up! Ask her questions, like “How’s the planning going?” or “Have you found your dress, yet?” These little morsels of interaction will go a long way. You will be surprised how appreciative the bride will be. While the bride may come off as wedding-centric be understanding that this day to her is the most important one of her life, and your interest in her wedding equates how much you care about her.
Show interest in helping this day be as seamless and easygoing as possible. Most wedding planning, on average, takes a year, so there is light at the end of the tunnel. If you want to make the bride happiest, just be attentive, caring and ready to spring into “wedding task” action if and when duty calls. If you unplug from the wedding planning, and don’t feel like it is your duty to appease the bride with thoughtful questions, don’t expect to have the same relationship with her after the wedding. The bride expects you to care as much as she does, or she wouldn’t have included you in the wedding at all. Live up to the bride’s expectations, or expect to be the source of her frustration and pain.