I received this email from a bride I didn’t know:
I came across your name when I searched online about ideas to tell your friends you aren’t having bridesmaids. I have been in several of my friends wedding’s and I also have some single friends. If I had a bridal party it would be around 12. The guy I am marrying has several siblings (half, step) and he was willing to have his friends but not his siblings but since I have 1 brother and I was in his wedding (as a bridesmaid) I said there is no way I won’t have him walk down (with my sister in law since they are married). He is not that close with his siblings but we have agreed to have all siblings walk down and have our 3 closest friends stand up there as our matrons of honor and best men.
Now to the tricky part… How do I tell my friends I am not having them? I know that they will understand but I still feel I owe them a letter, note, a phone call some sort of explanation. I know that my situation is different since he has a lot of siblings but I have another friend who is getting married a month after me who I believe is going to have a wedding party which means I will be included in it. Is that weird? Awkward?
Sorry for the long drawn out therapy session I just need some advice as to how to handle this.
And this was my response:
First, I agree that you will want to tell your friends the truth. BUT… Why not do something special and invite them to be part of your wedding party since they can’t be part of your Wedding Party?
I would suggest doing something special for these women. Maybe, a few weeks before the wedding, host a celebration just for them and you. It could be something simple… Like taking over a nail salon and having nails done together (with maybe a little food and maybe a little bubbly)… Or something more elaborate, like a luncheon or a spa day. The idea is to honor this group of women and let them know how appreciative you are of their friendship.
And/or… They can all be “honor attendants” and have special jobs on your wedding day… Like being hosts in the lobby of the hotel where guests are staying to welcome them…. Handing out ceremony programs… Ushering guests to their seats at the wedding ceremony… Doing readings at the ceremony… Being in charge of the guest book to make sure all the guests remember to sign in… Handling gifts and cards and making sure they are put in a secure place after the cocktail reception… You get the idea. If two women did each of these tasks, your twelve friends would all have something special to do on your big day.
You can still honor your friends, and they can still honor you.
photo courtesy of Tyler Boye Photography