Your bridesmaids are your go-to female team as you prepare for your big day. Sometimes your 'maids can disappoint you with bad attitudes or general rudeness, which can put a damper on this exciting time. Here are some strategies for dealing with a diva-like bridesmaid—and how to not create a maid-zilla with too many demands.
1. Don't overwhelm your 'maids with costs.
Some bridesmaids act out because they feel astounded by how much they have to spend on wedding-related duties. While they should come to you with their concerns, it is up to you to make sure you're not asking them to go broke in the process. (This will only make them resent you.)
Keep bad attitudes at bay by trying to help out your bridesmaids financially, if you can. I have always preferred when the bride picks up the entire tab, but that is not always the case. At the very least, hair and makeup should be paid for by the bride (if you have a certain look you're seeking, or simply wants everyone to look their best), as should the shipping of the dresses (to the attendant or to the event) and the bridesmaids' shoes (if you want them all to match). Also note that $100-$300 is a fair price for a bridesmaid's dress.
2. Be reasonable about your wedding-related requirements.
Another way you can keep bad attitudes in check before they begin is by being realistic about how much time you expect your 'maids to devote to your big day before the main event. Weddings can bond people for life or destroy relationships that went on for years, so be careful about being overly demanding, which will spark animosity among your friends. Attending the dress fitting, a shower, the rehearsal dinner and a one-night stay (or two maximum) in a hotel is acceptable to ask from your 'maids. If you'd like them to help you with favors and other planning duties, great, but tasks related to your wedding shouldn't become weekly requirements.
3. Speak up right away in the face of diva-dom.
If you've done everything you can to make the bridesmaid experience fun and affordable, then poor behavior from your 'maids is pretty inexcusable. So, if you get push-back from your bridal party about perfectly reasonable costs and requirements, speak up right away to address the situation. This is not something that should be relegated to your 'maid of honor or your mother—these people should not have to play mediator. Plus, the message will mean more coming from you. Besides, if you are mature enough to get married, you should be mature enough to speak your mind like a lady.
4. Don't tolerate a bridesmaid taking over the dress appointment.
I've seen 'maids throw fits during the dress shopping appointment—doing things like throwing dresses on the floor rather than placing them upon the hanger, refusing to acknowledge the presence of the stylist, and clearly ignoring the bride's requests in terms of dress style. If this happens to you, gently but firmly make it clear that this day is your day and, when it is her wedding day, you will gladly return the gesture.
5. Dismiss your bridesmaid-zilla.
This is a worst-case scenario and a drastic measure but, if one of your 'maids is making your pre-wedding life miserable, this has to be done. When a bridesmaid is being uncooperative and causing undo stress by complaining about finances (which can be understandable), she simply should bow out. But sometimes it is up to the bride—not the maid of honor!—to formally ask her to not be part of the festivities. In most cases, the 'maid will be relieved to be unburdened by your wedding—and you certainly don't want anyone in your wedding party who would consider your special day to be a burden anyway.
*Huffington Post contributor Renee Strauss is a bridal stylist who currently stars in TLC's *Brides of Beverly Hills.
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