Photo: Clane Gessel Photography
Whether you couldn't care less or you're feeling a little feisty about what your fiancée's bachelorette party will entail, the BRIDES team figured men could use a bit of unsolicited advice for handling the emotions and etiquette surrounding this important event. We tapped Janylle Radden, founder of Ball Before the Chain, a boutique bachelor/bachelorette planning service, for some expert (and super-easy) tips for grooms-to-be.
Send Her Some Bubbles
A memorable gesture that Radden highly recommends is to surprise the bride and her friends with a bottle of champagne while they're out at a restaurant or partying poolside. "I've seen this before and the whole crew loves it," Radden says. "Everyone thinks it's so nice and it also adds to the celebration. Plus, it's easy to do because girls usually don't just 'wing it.' If you need to, you can ask a bridesmaid when and where they'll be."
Tip: When you call in your covert operation, be prepared with all the necessary info: Be able to describe your girl's group in detail and any other identifying info. And have your credit card ready, of course.
Be Her Life Saver
And by that, we mean get crafty with a homemade survival kit. Think Tylenol, 5-Hour Energy, eye drops, maybe even a little roll of dollar bills for a laugh. But "know your audience," advises Radden. "If strippers totally freak her out, singles might be more funny to you than to her." It doesn't have to be extravagant, nor should it be bigger than a small Ziplock baggie; she's cramming enough stuff into her bag, after all.
Tip: If your kit is oversized (dude, can you not read?) or you are making kits for the entire bachelorette party (now we're talking!), be sure to get tracking info if you ship the goods. And if you're sending it to a hotel, know whose name is on the room since it may be someone like the maid of honor.
Give Her Some Encouraging Words
Your lady has probably spent her last few travels with you by her side — and as excited as she is to be with her friends, she's probably going to be thinking of you more than either of you might expect. "Right before she leaves, give her some encouraging words or sneak a little note in her suitcase or purse," Radden suggests. "Tell her to enjoy herself; this is a rare thing she gets to do with her friends. And when she's telling you their plans, don't be judgmental or like, 'Oh, so you guys are going to do THAT?'"
Tip: Maybe you think her bach party is child's play compared to how you and your friends turn up — but just remember she's the one spearheading the intricate, massive party of a lifetime in your very near future. So show some respect, man.
Keep It Real
Radden calls it an Honesty Pact: The gist of it is to vocalize your absolute farthest limits (how much money is spent, how much illegal activity happens, whatever) about each other's parties — and be honest with the other person if those lines are crossed. "It's worse to have to lie to each other," she says.
Tip: If it's possible, Raddens advises scheduling your parties for the same weekend. "This way, you'll both have your own distractions and will be with your own people — instead of one of you sitting at home wondering about the other."