No, You Can't Be My Bridesmaid

Bridesmaids, Etiquette
No You Can't Be My Bridesmaid

Photo: Getty Images

There is a conversation every bride dreads — and it begins with telling a good friend that she didn't make the final cut when it came to choosing your wedding party.

In a perfect world, weddings would never involve hurt feelings. But whether you made a practical decision (asking sisters to be bridesmaids before friends, for example) or this friend simply assumed she'd be chosen as a 'maid, this can be a painful chat for both of you. Here are some tips to take the edge off:

1. Tell her in person. It might be tempting to send off a quick text to avoid confrontation, but this tech-savvy move could actually amplify misunderstandings if she misreads your sentences or emotions. Offer to meet her for coffee or a glass of wine to have the talk.

2. Explain your decision-making process. She's less likely to take the cut personally if she understands your reasoning. For example, say, "With two sisters and only three bridesmaid slots, I chose my childhood friend because I've known her the longest."

See More: Who Should be Bridesmaid? Follow This Point System to Pick Your Bridal Party!

3. Remind her how much her friendship means to you. This was a tough decision — one that meant you had to leave out people who are very important to you, including her. But that doesn't mean you value her thoughtfulness, support, and up-for-anything attitude any less.

See More: The 10 Things a Bridesmaid Should Never Do — But Always Unknowingly Does

4. Offer her other ways to participate in your wedding day. Could she read a poem during the ceremony? Greet people at the door? Or perhaps you could honor her by asking her to wear a dress in a color that matches or complements the wedding party.

5. Invite her to pre-wedding parties and planning sessions. By including her in the big-day related activities, she's less likely to feel like she's been left out.

What other suggestions do you have for navigating this tricky conversation? Tweet us @BRIDES.

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