The bridesmaid who didn't want to be there

Hello Brides xx

Some post wedding support here please for anyone who has time.  I don't have anyone else to speak to about it. 

1 week before the wedding one of my bridesmaids phoned me to tell me she had mixed up her dates and she couldn't make the wedding because she was going to a work thing instead. I asked her why she was choosing a work thing over our wedding and she just said she was sorry. I said I would find out if I could try & cancel everything id arranged for her. (flowers, personalised clutch, food, hair...!)

She hadnt come to anything wedding related - not even the hen do - excuse after excuse but she said she was ill so I didn't want to be unkind. My fiancé & I decided to write to her and ask her to sleep on it before she officially dropped out & we had to tell the others. 

We'd been friends for around 8 years, often long distance but we spoke on the phone a lot & would meet up when I went back. She'd always been really supportive & we'd had a laugh together. I thought I could rely on her & she seemed so excited to be asked to be a bridesmaid but a few months after that I heard very little and because I was so busy I don't think I realised she was distancing herself from me. I just accepted her excuses and stayed positive and excited about getting married. 

when she  phoned me to drop out and then later told me her friends & family had advised her to go to work over the wedding I felt really upset & almost stupid for asking her to be such an important part of our wedding. I told her I didn't want someone there who didn't want to be there and suggested she just come as a guest if at all. She came back and said she was going to be there and she was sorry - she would be there. I asked her to phone me which she didn't then the next time I saw her was the morning of our wedding much to the other bridesmaids bemusement and my surprise.

She did everything that she had to do which was great but in all she kept her distance from me that day. I felt her being there devalued the other bridesmaids place next to me who had all gone out of their way to be involved & truly deserved to  be getting spoilt. 

I don't have any sisters or cousins but I'm lucky to have lots of lovely supportive friends, I thought she was one of them and I wish I'd given her place to someone else. 

5 months have passed & I haven't seen her or spoken to her since the wedding but have tried to.  I wondered if she was unwell or something or just too busy so I discreetly asked her boyfriend if she was ok but he said she just didn't have time and maybe I should just give her space. He said the bridesmaid role had been more than she'd had time for and id asked for too much of her time - I'd asked for three days over 6 months. 

1. The dress fitting

2.  The hen do (which was shortened to one day because she wouldn't attend a weekend - then she didn't turn up!)

3. The wedding day itself 

under any other circumstances I would allow this friendship to just fizzle out but she lives on in my wedding album forever now and I hate to say she just doesn't deserve to be there. I was so kind to her and I now realise she didnt deserve it. 

another close friend of mine said that she thinks she is jealous & just cant be happy for me - it just seems too much of a coincidence that she began distancing herself after being asked to be involved in the wedding. 

she was there & she kept up appearances and was a bridesmaid and looked like she was having a great time but I bet any money I never see her again :( it's like dealing with a completely different person To the one I originally asked.

what would you do?


  • If her behavior is truly rooted in jealousy then from my experience I say cut her loose. Absolve yourself of her. I had a great friend/best friend/like a sister friend and roommate for five years. I had to move back to my hometown and shortly after I met my soul mate. My friend disagreed  (not because of him, she had never met him). She disagreed because she said I wasn't mature enough to handle a relationship. Well, that was almost six years ago. We have been married happily for almost four. I haven't been able to talk to her since the first year and only about six months ago did I stop holding out hope that she would want to reconcile. It was painful and it sucked, but when someone chooses to leave the friendship (whether outright and verbally or through actions) then you need to move on and enjoy your new life without them.

  • Thank you Rachel221 I know you are right and I'm sorry it happened to you too. x

  • That sounds like a truly horrible experience. I'm minded to agree with Rachel that perhaps this is someone not worth yout friendship. Weddings can sometimes bring out insecurities and lots of green eyed monsters, perhaps this 'friend' has done you a favour by distancing herself. I say that but I know when a very close friend of mine suddenly stopped really speaking to me (not wedding related but coincidently I had just moved in with my partner) I was heartbroken. I tried to instigate meeting up but she cancelled every time and eventually stopped even replying. I think in some ways the fact we hadn't argued or had any fallout made it worse as I didn't feel there was any closure. I also couldn't understand what I had supposedly done and took me a long time to realise that I'd done nothing! Sounds like your situation has some similarities. I heard from mutual friends sometime later that she felt i hadnt valued the friendship by fighting to try save it. Not that i agree you should have prove yourself like that, but looking back I wish I'd wrote to my friend. Maybe just asking if everything okay and explaining that I was feeling upset and confused by sudden distance between us. Maybe this would have helped us resolve things, maybe not but I think knowing I'd tried might have made me feel better. So I guess what I'm saying in a very long winded way... is might be time to walk away, but if a part of you does want to try rescure friendship or get closure, might be worth trying one last attempt and talking to your friend directly about situation x

  • Thank you Nina I think you're right too & I'm sorry that happened to you. I did speak to her at length nearer the wedding and we agreed that if she turned up on the day we could put it all behind us so I guess that's why I'm now quite confused. Her boyfriend has advised me to just let her contact me & he said she is very lucky to have such a thoughtful friend. I've never contacted him about anything like this so he did take it seriously. I think maybe in her head the wedding was a negative thing for her, even a burden so if turning up for one day and being thoroughly spoilt is something she holds against me then I should probably walk away X 

  • Ah Summer it sounds like you have done everything you can. Maybe one day she will come back in your life but for now don't let her spoil your happiness. As for the wedding photos, just remember the happy time for what it was and don't dwell on you friend. I know my friend was looking at her album just 4years after and said that there's actually quite a few people on pictures she's unlikely to ever see again for one reason or another. Doesn't take away from how special the day was x

  • You are very wise Nina! 

    I think you're right. Contacting her bf was my last resort. if it was the last day I'll ever spend with her then at least we were both happy & looked amazing! Xx

  • Anna22Anna22 Posts: 157

    Something seems odd about the fact that the boyfriend said that you were taking up too much of her time versus the 3 days you asked for.  Perhaps if she was unwell her energy levels were really low and even that amount of time was a lot.  Did she have to come a long way for the events? Was there something major going on in her job that took up a lot of time?

    If you do want to maintain the friendship, I would suggest to keep it low key.  Send a friendly text or e-mail, then leave it for her to respond.  Don't talk about the wedding or honeymoon at all.  Keep her on your Christmas card list (showing my age here!).

    I know the bfriend said that you should wait for her to make first contact, but I think you should (if you want to) reach out first and then wait.



  • Hi Anna 

    thank you for your opinion

    I was a bit confused by this too. I can only think that my bridesmaids tried to plan surprises for me - the others were super keen. I know one of them planned for us all to go away for a few days just in the next County but it ended up being cancelled & moved local to her So she could go - then she didn't come so they werent very happy.

    The wedding was a few hrs drive from her but she knew that from the outset and the dress fitting was an hr away. If she'd have said she wasn't going to the fitting or hen do then I wouldn't have been disappointed when she didnt appear.  

    Ive been in her area a few times recently & have told her but she's said she couldn't see me. I live a few hrs away. I haven't mentioned the wedding for a while. In my last message I said for her to let me know if she wanted to catch up and I've made it quite clear if there's something wrong she can tell me (or not!) 

    I agree with you that if its health then anything could be a problem but if I've not been told about it then it's hard to understand. One of my other bridesmaids was very ill near the wedding but was determined to be there so I arranged for her to have someone from the venue look after her all day & they even remembered to give her her medication etc and she had such a great time. 

    i will keep her on my Xmas card list of course I will but I'm not sure I will get her a gift this year. I've spent a lot of money on her already with no thank you. Sigh! xx

  • RubyCatRubyCat Posts: 272 New bride

     "I wondered if she was unwell or something or just too busy so I discreetly asked her boyfriend if she was ok but he said she just didn't have time and maybe I should just give her space. He said the bridesmaid role had been more than she'd had time for and id asked for too much of her time"


    I think this is your answer, it is to do with the wedding planning. You should wait a few weeks/maybe a month then go round and ask her what specifically upset her during the wedding preparations.

  • I can see your point. I'm not sure I will have the opportunity to speak to her again. Perhaps I've used up my time quota for this year, all one day of it. I was speaking to a mutual friend of ours today & she said she thinks she is fine, she's seen her regularly recently and she's really well & happy so if there's nothing wrong then the problem must be me and as the ladies above said perhaps I should walk away and accept it for what it is even if I don't understand it. x

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