Addressing the Inevitable Wedding Woes

Addressing the Inevitable Wedding Woes

Wedding season is upon us this summer and before the bride says “I do,” there’s usually a lot of drama to deal with whether you’re the bride, in the wedding party or just attending as a guest. In this month’s column, we address some common wedding woes and how to deal with them so they don’t put a cloud over that special day.

Being a maid of honor encompasses an extensive amount of work other than just showing up for the wedding
Being a maid of honor encompasses an extensive amount of work other than just showing up for the wedding

My best friend of 20 years is getting married in May and I am very happy for her. We grew up together and are like sisters. Unfortunately, she’s decided to listen to her fiancée and make his sister the maid of honor, not me. Her soon-to-be sister in law lives in Manhattan and is only coming here the week before the wedding. So, in the meantime, my friend has leaned on me to do all the things a real maid of honor should do and it’s exhausting. I guess I’m just angry that her sister-in-law gets the honors and I do all the work as a bridesmaid. How do I handle this?

The best thing to always do is be honest. Tell your best friend that it hurt your feelings when she picked her soon-to-be sister-in-law over you. Explain to her how much you love helping her out, and would love to plan anything she needs, but you wish you could share the honor of standing up in her wedding as a maid of honor. Focus on how much you love her and want to be a part of her celebration rather than your feeling that the current maid of honor isn’t quite doing her job. If you feel your friend expresses how much she loves you and wishes you were a bigger part of her wedding suggest that you and the soon to be sister in law be co-maids of honor. She may be interested or she may not. However, she is the bride and this is her wedding so regardless of her decision you have to respect  it. That being said, just because you respect her decision does not mean you are not allowed to share your feelings. It’s better to be honest and open than to let this quietly destroy a friendship.

Seating guests together can be a challenge; take the worry out of it by letting them sit where they want.
Seating guests together can be a challenge; take the worry out of it by letting them sit where they want.

I’m getting married in late summer to a man who has been married before for twenty-five years and has two children. I met him when he was married and he left his wife for me, so his children are anything but warm towards me. My question is, do I invite them to the wedding? Or even have them involved in it? It’s a touchy situation and I’m not sure how to handle it.

You definitely need to invite his children to the wedding. Whether or not they choose to come is their decision. If they already have a bit of resentment towards you they might become more resentful if they believe the reason you did not invite them is because you want to tear the family apart. Parents separating is a hard thing to deal with, and a parent’s infidelity can make that harder. This is not something you should be going through alone. Your soon-to-be husband should be working with you to help mend these fences. Though times may seem hard, the children may begin to ease when they see that their father’s and your relationship is genuine.

I was invited to a friend’s bachelorette party last week. She and I are more like acquaintances but I know her fiancée very well as we work together. Well, let’s just say it was a wild night and the bride ended up taking the bartender at the club where we were to home and having sex…she actually bragged about it. I’ve been to bachelorette parties where there are male performers, etc., but no one has ever actually gone home and slept with one of them. I will have to see my friend/co-worker every day and all I can think about is his wife having sex with another man three days before their wedding. It’s driving me crazy. Do I tell him or not?

Even if the entertainment at your bachelorette party has six-pack abs like Channing Tatum, think twice before taking him home…it might come back to haunt you.
Even if the entertainment at your bachelorette party has six-pack abs like Channing Tatum, think twice before taking him home…it might come back to haunt you.

Cheating can be a tricky situation. However, things may not always be black and white. Society is constantly changing when it comes to the human relationship and you never truly know what goes on behind closed doors. When it comes to other’s relationships it is best to stay out of things. The truth often has a way of coming out. That being said, if you’re finding it hard to stay out of things it is best to talk to the bride to be about what happened. If you approach it from a caring and understanding angle rather than an accusatory one she will be more likely to understand why you believe this may have been inappropriate. It is better to get the full story before pointing fingers and getting yourself into drama that could have possibly been avoided.

Financially, I can’t handle being a bridesmaid at the moment. I’ll have to pay for the dress, travel and hotel and a gift. I don’t want to disappoint my longtime friend, but I’m looking at spending $1,000 that I don’t have at this time. How should I handle this?

If this friend of yours feels you have a close enough connection to ask you to be a part of her wedding than you should be able to explain to her your situation. Invite her to grab a coffee and explain to her about what is going on with you at this point in your life and although you love her, you are unable to be a bridesmaid due to other circumstances. Your friend will understand and she will be happier to hear your explanation than to think that you either turned her down for no reason or participated in something even though you couldn’t afford it. Though brides can get a bad rap as “bridezillas”, your friend will understand your situation.

Yes, being a bridesmaid can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life, but it also can be the most expensive.
Yes, being a bridesmaid can be one of the most rewarding experiences of your life, but it also can be the most expensive.

I’m a bride and have a conundrum with my wedding this June. I have two hundred guests and wonder who I am going to seat with whom. Is it good to seat singles with couples or all the singles at one table? Most of my friends are married and my single friends are friends with them so this seating chart is a monstrous effort. I want to make everyone happy…how do I do that?

There is a very easy solution to your problem: allow your guests to choose their own seating. Though it may seem chaotic and nerve racking to leave the decision up to the guests, it can work out quite well. If everyone is in charge of their own seating it allows you to step away from the hectic process of choosing a seating chart and allows your friends to all pick a spot in which they are most comfortable. Feel like no seating chart is too chaotic? It is never bad to intertwine your single and married friends. By creating singles-only and couples-only tables you leave yourself open to criticism for defining people based on their relationship status. If your married friends mix well with your single friends, mix them up!

If he calls off the wedding, let him worry about returning the gifts.
If he calls off the wedding, let him worry about returning the gifts.

My fiancée called off our wedding at the last minute and I received numerous gifts but don’t have the mental capacity to send them back. What happens when you’re not the one to call it off, but are responsible for returning gifts? I have no support network in New Orleans to help me and have to deal with a move out of our shared home. Any advice?

Break ups are tough, especially when it comes to engagements. Whether it is returning a box full of his movies and clothes or figuring out how to split up the furniture, the separation process is a struggle. If you do not want to deal with the gifts and you are the one moving out forget about the things that need returning. Leave them behind! Let your ex-fiancée figure out how they want to deal with it. Make the returns his responsibility and do not let yourself spend any more time worrying about it. What you should do is focus on yourself and let your ex worry about the rest.