Being asked to be a bridesmaid is considered a big honour, but it’s also a pretty big job.
That’s why it’s important that you don’t say yes without thinking about what you’re doing.
While it is polite to answer a bridesmaid offer in a relatively short window, it’s worth asking yourself these questions before you think about saying yes.
1. Consider Why & Be Honest
Before you worry about whether you need to say yes or no to the bridesmaid offer, have a think about why you might have been offered the position in the first place. Is this a matter of obligation more so than an intentional invitation? Or does the bride really want you there?
Also be honest with yourself about your relationship with the bride. She might consider you a close friend, but if you don’t consider her a close friend, things might get awkward down the line as stress mounts.
There’s no point pretending otherwise because weddings aren’t just expensive for the bride and groom. There are a number of financial outlays that are often expected of the bridesmaid, from clothing to activities, that you need to consider.
If the wedding party you’ve been invited to join is going all out, you can expect costs to be higher. If you aren’t sure if your budget will cover it, talk honestly with the bride about what is expected from you financially right from the start, so there’s no confusion.
3. Other Bridesmaids
When the person who has asked you to be their bridesmaid is a close friend, you’re likely to know some of the other people who will make up the bridal party. However, if there are people in the bridal party that you don’t know well, or really dislike, it’s important to think about what the overall effect might be on the wedding.
Rapport between bridesmaids makes a difference, so if you really can’t put your feelings about another bridesmaid aside, and the bride is unmovable in her need to include them, you might have to opt out. Or, just work hard to be pleasant, ignore those feelings, and move on.
4. Style Choices
If you’re a bridesmaid, this anger might be levelled towards you for gaining or losing right, cutting your hair, or changing your hair colour. Or you might disagree over her choice for the gown, particularly if you don’t find it flattering. However, once you’ve said yes to the bride to be a bridesmaid, you do pretty much need to go with their choices, so if you have any major concerns voice them before you’ve agreed to be included.
5. Pre-Wedding Events
As well as the money involved, there’s something else that you really need to think about before the wedding rolls around, and that is your availability. The pre-wedding events are often considered to be an integral part of being in the wedding ensemble, so attending them is rarely optional.
If you’re a bridesmaid, this means rehearsals, bridal parties, hens night and other things like dress fittings, as well as the big day. If you work full time, or have a family, you need to make sure that you have the time to commit to these events.
6. Wedding Talk
If weddings aren’t your thing, you should know that bridesmaids tend to listen to a lot of wedding talk. They’re pretty much the go-to girls for the bride, so they’ll hear all about the details of the wedding, from the flowers to the finger food.
As an extension of that, they’re also likely to hear all about the dramas. If your very best friend is the bride, you can usually motivate yourself to be involved in those discussions, but if you aren’t that close, you might find it hard to fake enthusiasm.
7. Not For You?
If at the end of the day, being a bridesmaid just isn’t something you want to do, or isn’t something you’re able to do, it’s important that you’re honest with the bride. Don’t stress, this is an offer you can refuse, providing you do it gently and with a bit of style.
Be honest about why you don’t think you’re a good fit for the bridal party, but make it clear that you’re absolutely celebrating the next step in her relationship. Even if you don’t want to be a bridesmaid, you could always offer to do something else on the big day like be an usher, or you could simply be a grateful and delighted guest.