What to Do About Unhelpful Bridesmaids

You chose your bridesmaids. You proposed, and they said yes. You bought each of them the bridesmaid jewelry you thought they’d love best. Now you’re relying on them to be your Gal Fridays in the months and weeks leading up to the wedding. Most of your bridesmaids have really risen to the challenge of gown shopping, assembling wedding favors, and helping you pick out the perfect flowers for your bridal bouquet. But one bridesmaid? Well, she’s slacking.

Not that you have ridiculously high expectations. You went into wedding planning knowing you didn’t want to be a bridezilla, and reading this very blog has taught you that bridesmaids can’t be forced to put in a hard day’s work. Still, you’re wondering what’s up since your bestie seemed super psyched when she accepted your invitation to be in your wedding party and opened the pretty little bag with her bridesmaid jewelry and bridesmaid gift.

We can’t explain what’s going on in her head, of course, but we can help you figure out what she’s thinking.

First, ask yourself if this particular bridesmaid is just extra busy and you’ve been so wrapped up in wedding planning that you haven’t noticed. Maybe she’s in med school. Maybe she’s finishing up a jewelry making course. Could be that she’s been taking care of a sick loved one or is swamped at work. Consider tactfully asking your absentee bridesmaid why she hasn’t been able to make it to your group wedding planning activities.

Then, consider whether you’ve been asking too much of your bridesmaids. Bridesmaid jewelry isn’t a payment for services rendered, and bridesmaids-to-be need their weekends, too. It’s easy to let your own enthusiasm for stuff like cake tasting overwhelm your good sense when it comes to overworking your best girlfriends. Be sensitive to the fact that they have lives, too, and to-dos they need to take care of.

Finally, if you’re getting a really unenthusiastic vibe from the bridesmaid in question, think about whether she might have accepted the position out of a sense of obligation rather than excitement. We’re not saying that she doesn’t want to be in your wedding but as hard as it is to believe, not everyone finds the experience of taking on the usual bridesmaid duties a laugh riot.

Here’s one last suggestion: cut your slacker bridesmaid some… well, slack. There are so many reasons that a bridesmaid might not make it to all the pre-wedding activities, and the vast majority of them have nothing to do with how said bridesmaid feels about the bride.