Wedding Etiquette

The Bridezilla Diaries: Inside The Mind of a Stressed-Out Bride

Picking out a wedding dress, making seating charts, coordinating wedding vendors, and more. It's no wonder so many brides have a meltdown at some point during the wedding-planning process. Is there any way to avoid it? One real bride tells her story.

I am not by nature a screamer. Nor am I a diva, or a drama queen, or a princess.

Yes, I get my hair colored every few months in a futile attempt to recapture those awesome sunny blond streaks from childhood; yes, I've been known to enjoy a mani-pedi from time to time—but honestly, I'm pretty low-maintenance. Half the time I walk around with dog hair on my shirt; empty water bottles roll freely in the back of my car; lipstick loves to melt in my purse. And I'm okay with that. It's life, right? Life is messy.

Or so I always thought, until about a week before my wedding, at which point I turned into a demon from hell. There I was: a sleep-deprived young woman who hadn't eaten in three weeks, standing in her parents' kitchen with an enormous three-ring binder in her hands, screaming at her half-asleep 20-year-old college-student sister for not having gotten up before dawn to write out place cards.

"Dude, you need to relax," Suzanne said.

"Relax?" I snapped, feeling my jaw begin to tremble, the blood rushing to my face. "Relax? Actually, what I need right now is a maid of honor who gives a shit about me and my wedding."

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A shouting match ensued. She was a lazy, self-involved child, according to me. I was a psychotic, self-involved bitch, according to her. Doors were slammed. Tears were shed. I remember thinking I was surrounded by the most selfish people in the world. I remember thinking nobody understood me. And then, about an hour later, I looked at myself in the mirror and thought: Oh, my God, I'm that girl. I have become the Bride from Hell.

We all know her. Movies have been made about her. Reality shows have trained their cameras on her mascara-streaked face and been rewarded with stellar ratings. And it would all be very funny, if it were just Kim Kardashian and the big-haired Jersey drama queens who went bananas over their weddings. But the truth is, most brides find themselves having a meltdown at some point in the planning process. Getting married may be one of the most exciting events of our lives, but studies show that it's also one of the most stressful.

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