Maid of Honour disaster...

Okay so long story short, I asked my best friend of 21 years to be my Maid of Honour for my wedding. She was the first friend I called when I got engaged, and she is the one person I can be 100% myself around! We have been friends since we were three years old and she was so excited for me when I told her my news. she was so happy when I asked her to be my maid of honour and excited to help with the planning. She came with me to find my dress and that's when she dropped the bombshell she was going travelling!

I was in July she told me, she said she would be spending a few months in Australia and then was going to travel her way home and she said she would be back in The UK by March/April time.

Last week she dropped another bombshell, she said she has decided to stay in Australia for a full year, and not moving back to the UK until September. My wedding is in August!!! Whilst she has promised she will fly back for the wedding (apparently she has asked about time off at her new job for the wedding but hasn't heard back yet..) she will only arrive around a week before my wedding day.

I feel completely gutted and have been in tears so much over this. She is my BEST FRIEND and the one person I thought would support me out of anyone. I am not angry about her travelling and living her life, that is not the problem here at all, the problem I have is she accepted the job of being my maid of honour without being honest and telling me she was going to be away for the whole lead up until my wedding. I did see on Facebook just before she was leaving (before she told me it would be a whole year) her mum wrote 'it's going to be a long year', so I am very sure she knew exactly how long she was going for, she just didnt tell me, and i don't know why? Because we tell eachother everything!

Now I pretty much have no maid of honour, she isn't going to be able to organise anything from Australia so one of my sisters is helping me with all the organisation, and organising my hen party (which my maid of honour won't even be able to come too! grr). My fiance feels as though she shouldn't be able to come back for a week before the wedding and claim the special title of maid of honour on the day, but my friend and I have been talking about being eachothers maid of honour for as long as I can remember and I would be heart broken for her not to be it.

I just don't know what to do, I feel so let down! Has anyone else had these problems? I just feel so sad and like it has affected our friendship x

Posts

  • sooz84sooz84 Posts: 378

    I think at the end of the day you choose people to be your maid/bridesmaid because they mean so much to you and it's important to have them by your side. None of my bridesmaids helped me with anything, I even planned my own hen dos. But to have them there on the morning and day of the wedding was all I wanted. She's doing what she wants to do and if you want her to help you with the wedding, that would mean her putting her plans on hold, which I'm sure you wouldn't want?

    She probably didn't tell you how long she was staying for because she thought you would be upset. She is flying back for your wedding, which will cost her a lot of money so she obviously wants to be there. 

  • MrsTwizbeMrsTwizbe Posts: 3,352 New bride

    I'm with Sooz. Really a bridesmaids 'job' is to put on the dress and turn up on the day. Anything else is bonus.

    She has already helped you with quite a bit, and she can still give emotional support while she is away.

    It will also be costing her a fortune to fly bk for the wedding (flights to Aus can be anywhere from 500 - 1500 quid return!) This is even more impressive given she is expecting to return for good about a month later.

    Be happy for her adventure and be grateful that you have a friend who cares enough to travel that far to be with you on your big day.

     

  • Kitten2014Kitten2014 Posts: 1,489

    I agree with both of the ladies above. The title of "maid of honor" is simply that: a title. While it would be nice to think that this position carries certain duties & responsibilities, being adults with our own lives, that is a naive thought. You dubbed her maid of honor because of the place she holds in your heart from the years of friendship you have shared, not because you expect her to complete a checklist of tasks for you before your wedding day. And with technology, it won't be hard for her to stay in touch, stay in the loop on the wedding's progress, and offer emotional support.

    I can certainly appreciate your disappointment. I'm sure you had hoped & planned to share the experience of planning your wedding with her, just as you've shared so many other experiences with her throughout your life. But you are both adults, and her life isn't standing still anymore than yours is.  Keep in touch with her as much as you can, assuming you still value the friendship and want her to be part of the planning process, even if it is from afar. As one of the other ladies already posted, most of us brides end up doing the bulk of the actual planning and decision making ourselves anyway; just take the time if you can to share those updates with her via FB,Skype, etc. It might not be the planning process you envisioned with her, but you can include her just the same.

  • RubyCatRubyCat Posts: 271 New bride

    I think you are confused. The only duties of the bridesmaids are to turn up on the day wearing the nice dress you picked for them.

    I do think she shouldn't have lied about the year thing, weddings are stressful enough

    At least you have your sister so if she doesn't turn up you will still have a bridesmaid to stand up with you.

  • lubeslubes Posts: 1,555

    Hey Rosie,

    I can understand your upset. I too would feel betrayed if one of my bridesmaids hadn't been completely honest with me about something so significant! However, I think it's a good thing that you are getting this frustration out now - our weddings can make us a little emotionally sensitive and I think once you have had a cry and read our responses that you will be able to renew and move forward.

    Let's flip this situation a little bit. Of course, you have the right to feel upset that your MOH won't be around to help with your planning or be at your hen do, especially when you have imagined it for decades. However, it is her who is missing out on the excitement of your wedding planning and your hen party, not you. She is going to be the one who will feel left out when you talk about what a great time you had in the run up to your wedding; I'm sure she will feel some guilt about it - I think you wouldn't be human if you didn't. Also, looking at the bigger picture, at least she hasn't given a second thought to coming all the way back from Australia for your big day. Ultimately, that is when you need her to be there for you and that is being a pretty decent friend! 

    I can see where you're coming from in terms of whether she is worthy of the MOH title, but I think it will cause a lot more hassle than it's worth to revoke that from her. From her angle, she will probably think she deserves a medal for making the effort to come all the way from Australia so let her be MOH; it would be a pretty big insult to throw that back in her face and not worth losing your years of friendship over. As the other ladies have said, it is only a title! Let your sister know how grateful you are for her stepping in and helping out - an extra special present or a mention in the speeches perhaps.

    To give you a personal perspective, I was a 'regular' bridesmaid for one of my best friends recently; I took her out and paid for afternoon tea (after I couldn't make her planned hen do...even though only one friend went :/), wore the dress she had bought for me (she ended up eloping so just had an evening do) and spent a fair bit on a present: her MOH didn't bother wearing the dress, spent the money from my friend's H2B for the hen do on herself rather than my friend and made a wedding cake. She got flowers and a glowing thank you in the speeches. My nose was well out of place, but my friend mentioned privately how grateful she was for all my efforts! I guess the moral of the story is that as long as you let people know that you appreciate them, it doesn't matter if they are MOH or not! To me, it wasn't about the title, all that kept me sweet was knowing I had done everything I could to make my friend enjoy her celebrations and getting a simple 'thank you' - you will be amazed how far it goes :) x

  • Thanks everyone, your responses have been so helpful. I think the reason I have got so upset about it is the fact she wasn't honest from the beginning about how long she was going to be away for and we spoke about all the exciting things we would do during the planning etc, and because I just want her there with me in the lead up, not so she has to plan, but because it would be nice to share the whole experience with her. 

     

    Thanks everyone! x

  • Sal thanks for the response but you clearly didn't read the post properly. I don't feel betrayed she's gone away, I stated that I wouldn't want to stop her doing her thing. I felt betrayed she lied about it.

  • I agree with the other posters. You'd be surprised how easy it will be for your friend to be involved. One if my BMs went travelling and was intending to be back a couple of months before my wedding. Her plans changed and she got a job in NZ. I was upset, we were both upset, we both cried over Skype when she told me she couldn't come back for the wedding otherwise she'd lose her job. She even thought I would stop speaking to her! This was ridiculous after all, it's just one day. I know it's my wedding but years if friendship are far more valuable than her not being able to make my wedding.

    In the end she was actually really involved in all the planning on email, Skype, what's app etc. In fact, more involved than one of my other BMs who was in the UK. We Skyped on the morning of my wedding and she'd have been Skyped in to the day if only the Wi-Fi wasn't so non existent at my venue. 

    When she came home later in the year we watched the wedding DVD, drank champagne and we got to relive the whole day again, together and it was fab.

    X

  • Jenni8Jenni8 Posts: 3,201

    I understand your upset Rosie and I am not going to criticise your and make you feel even worse for it like some other posters have. However, I do think that some of them make a good point. Bridesmaids aren't *usually* as involved as you and your friend were thinking she would be.

    For example, I dont think it is suitable for your friend to come with you to see venues, meet photographers, design your cake or purchase your rings, as these sorts of things are for you to do with your fiance as much as we all forget, it is his day too! I am sure he would like some input even if he doesn't show it, and it will help him to get excited about the wedding as you are. 

    I guess what I am trying to say is..... try to turn it around and think about the wedding as something for you to get excited about with your fiance.

    And then, you can ensure you have regular skype conversations with friends, email her links to your pinterest etc. This is what I am doing with my maid of honour as we don't see each other much and she only lives 2 hours away in Birmingham! It sounds like she is still excited about your wedding as she is paying such a lot to come back for it so I am sure will appreciate you trying to get her involved from the other side of the world, whilst you also show interest and excitment for her adventures, as you have displayed on this thread :)

  • ignore sal 3 - this person seems to have wrote a lot of nasty messages on other threads I have read this afternoon.

  • lubeslubes Posts: 1,555
    Sal 3 wrote (see post):

    Rosie. . . I did read the post correctly. I was among reference to another poster 

    Sal, if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say it at all 

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