All I'm saying is your special day isn't your bridal party's special day. So, never forget the power of "Thank You," and always be considerate of your bridesmaids' time and money. Entitlement isn't pretty, but a gracious bride is classically gorgeous.
Of course anyone who agrees to stand by a bride on her wedding day must understand that there's a monetary obligation associated with being apart of the big day. But, what used to be agreeing to buy a dress has turned into a long list of contributions that can quickly drain a bank account.
As of 2011, Mint.com estimated the average cost of being a bridesmaid was $1,600 dollars. Which, to me, is an insane amount of money to drop on someone else's wedding. But, with the now trending weekend-getaway bachelorette parties, and long list of other bridal expectations, this figure has likely become even more shocking.
A simple night-out-on-the-town bachelorette has, for many bridal parties, turned into a full-fledged vacation to the beach, mountains, Vegas, or even Disney with matching shirts and coozies in tow. Sure, it sounds fun -- but lodging, meals, entertainment, gas/plane ticket, and splitting up the bride's portion (as is often expected from some of the exceptionally entitled) isn't cheap. Especially for the 20-something-year-old bridesmaids who naturally don't have much disposable income.
Many of my friends have aired their frustration towards the unreasonable amount of money they have spent to be a part of someone else's wedding. Dresses that cost 300+ dollars (which they will only be able to wear once), the requirement to pay to have their hair and make-up done on the wedding day, being asked to chip in towards a spa day for the bride (on top of their wedding and shower gifts), and other ridiculous expenditures that have often left my mouth hanging open at the insanity of it all.
Shame on the brides who expect -- and in some cases demand -- their bridesmaids shell out so much out to be in their wedding.
Of course, this is not to say that all brides who have destination bachelorette parties, or have their bridesmaids spend money on other non-essential wedding costs, are entitled and ungracious. There are many bridal parties who can more than afford, and truly want, to spend the money on trips and nails and makeup and kitschy bachelorette weekend accessories. And, of course many of these brides go above and beyond to show their gratitude.
The point to be made though is not all bridesmaids have the ability or desire to fund all the wedding "extras." So, brides would be well served to keep their expectations in check and be truly thankful, rather than demanding, to those who are selflessly standing by their side- and continually celebrating them- not only on their wedding day, but throughout the many other bridal events and all of the related planning.
On June 25th of this year I will be saying "I do." I have opted to only have two bridesmaids, my sister and my future sister-in-law, and I unequivocally know this:
Both of them are doing me a favor by participating in my wedding; Not the other way around.
Of course it is very special to be asked to be in someone else's wedding, and I know they are both happy to be involved. But still... they didn't have to agree to generously commit their time and expense to my big day.
I beyond appreciate the significant amount of time they have spent, and continue to spend, discussing all the details that go along with planning a wedding, helping me make a multitude of decisions, running various errands with me or on my behalf, and listening to me when I am having a bridal breakdown.
Even more so, I cannot thank them enough for paying for their bridesmaid's dress and alterations, contributing to my bridal shower, and all the many other things they are doing to make my wedding time memorable. They are generously partaking in my special day because they love me and my fiancé, so I am surely going to reciprocate the love by being the antithesis of a bridezilla: undemanding and appreciative.
Brides, your wedding is an extremely special, once-in-a-lifetime event, and you absolutely deserve for your commitment to be celebrated the way you have always dreamed. I'm simply suggesting you remain down-to-earth and grateful to those who are doing you the honor of being by your side when you tie the knot.
Note to Brides: Don't forget the importance of saying "Thank You" in the process of saying "I do."