My future Mother in Law called me a fat pig in my dress, and said she was embarrassed to go with me… Needless to say, she's no longer invited. – Brittany
It must be a widely-held belief that it's perfectly okay to fat shame a bride about her wedding gown, because friends and family say atrocious, cruel things, like it's an acceptable thing to do. For the record, it's not.
I'm sure you remember the adage, "If you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all." Keeping that in mind, what would ever inspire someone to criticize a bride in her wedding gown? Think carefully before choosing who you will take dress shopping with you.
For girls with less-than-flawless figures, wedding gown shopping can be incredibly stressful. Brides who are not an easy fit don't look forward to visiting bridal shops like most women do. It can be stressful and humiliating if those closest people to the bride aren't supportive.
I told my supervisor at work that I was going wedding dress shopping. Just casually mentioned it when she asked if I had any weekend plans. She looked at me and said, "are you sure you don't wanna wait a few months? Give you some time to get into smaller sizes?" Uhhhhhh F you! - Natalie
From the minute a woman gets engaged, friends will start asking about her dress plans. That's perfectly fine. It's asking about a bride's plans for her weight that truly crosses a line. Even when the person is well-intentioned, the result is the same. Fat-shaming a bride is never okay.
I had my own experience with this when I got married. When I was trying to choose between two different gowns, the size 0 bridal consultant jumped into them one at a time so I could see how they'd really look, since the samples wouldn't begin to zip on me. OMG. My bridesmaids who were with me were horrified, too. Just a totally unnecessary thing to do.
Yes, wedding professionals can be as cruel and tasteless as your rude cousin or jealous sister. It's hard to believe they stay in business, but there are a lot of brides who allow themselves to be bullied.
When I was trying on wedding dresses the lady who worked there said – "it's great to have an Australian designer so you can start losing weight and continue losing weight right up until a few months away when we have to send in your final measurements". But I never said anything about losing weight. – Anonymous
At one of my fittings, my SEAMSTRESS told me to rub olive oil on my body, then wrap my entire body in cellophane, then go to sleep that way underneath electric blankets!!!!!!!!! Isn't that crazy!? Apparently it was a suggestion to melt away my "belly flab." – Mary
I've been told that I really don't look like a bride because of my weight. I looked at doing boudoir photos for my future husband and was laughed at... "You? Really? You though? You're the bride? You're not wanting a gift certificate???" – Danielle
While it sucks to encounter mean, or clueless, so-called professionals "assist," it's almost worse when loved ones make nasty comments AFTER you've already made the purchase. You've paid a deposit (probably non-refundable), and whether the dress flatters you or not, that's your wedding gown.
I'm a Latina and my mother and friends are very opinionated. They are not afraid to say what they are thinking. I went with my fiancé dress shopping to avoid the negative comments about my overweight body (5'4 172 lbs. at that time). I chose a backless mermaid dress. When I showed my mother the picture, the first thing she pointed it out was my fat arms, and how I need to lose weight. She even got me weight loss pills. My maid of honor said that dress gives me a nice silhouette but my back looks fat. I managed to lose 10 lbs. so far but I can't lose too much more or my dress will be too big (size 12). My fiancé loves me the way I am. - MJ
Hold up a minute. A bridal size 12 is actually a real person size 8. And they’re fat shaming her? Wow, these are certainly the kind of comments that make you question the motivations of the people saying them. I'm not even going to go into my feelings about the size disparity in real clothing versus bridal attire – that's a whole different rant – but those numbers certainly do absolutely nothing to boost a woman's confidence.
People who say mean things to brides about their wedding gowns (and you know who you are) have their own motives, and most of them are not altruistic. But fat shaming a bride has consequences. It can really take the sparkle off the big day for an excited bride.
Lots of women diet before their wedding for many different reasons. Some get bullied into it, and some want to feel better about themselves on their wedding day. It's always a good thing to lose weight to improve your health, if you need to lose weight. But you don't have to lose weight to get married. The marriage license application does not how much you weigh. Your fiancé didn't give you a ring and say, "You'll get the other one when you've lost 50 lbs." You're engaged because the person you're marrying loves you exactly as you are.
Until next time, happy wedding planning from Sandy Malone Weddings & Events!
Note: All of the quotes in this article came from real brides participating on an engagement Facebook page, with permission from the authors.