Didn't enjoy my Hen Do :-(

Hi Ladies,

I am getting married in 3 weeks time and had my Hen do this past weekend.

I am really sad because I didn't really have a good time. Usually I am someone that tries to put on a brave face and be grateful for stuff that people have organised me, as I know my Bridesmaids put in a lot of effort. However, part of it was just so awful I couldn't even pretend to enjoy it!

I am a very shy person with a lot of anxiety. I am blessed with so many amazing friends, but none of them are really like me and I don't think they really understand the anxious part of me (which I try to keep hidden). So Saturday morning they had arranged for me a pole dancing class. For someone with anxiety this was honestly my idea of my worst nightmare! Because I was the Hen I was made the centre of attention, positioned at the front and kept being filmed etc. I couldn't do any of the tricks (it was SO difficult!) and the class was taught by a man wearing tight underwear which made me feel uncomfortable (sorry I know I sound like a prude!)... I literally spent it blinking back tears because I felt so shy and uncomfortable. I am so embarrassed that my Bridesmaids saw how upset I was, because I really hate looking ungrateful and I know that it was arranged in good faith. I just couldn't even pretend to enjoy it.

The rest of the day was nice - we went to an amazing spa and had a lovely relaxing time there including a yummy afternoon tea. It was super chilled out and nice, but because the day had started with such anxiety I couldn't fully relax and kept finding myself on the brink of tears, and then felt awful that I wasn't enjoying myself, and then that made me more upset. It was really horrible.

We then went out for a nice dinner but because I'd got myself so worked up I ended up with a migraine coming on and had to take a rizatriptan tablet which meant I then couldn't have alcohol so we had to cancel plans to go for cocktails and basically cut the evening short. The girls had gone to a lot off effort to make things nice, they'd decorated the table really nicely, brought me a bag full of goodies plus flowers, fizz, choccies etc., they'd made cupcakes and got a game to play when we got back to my friend's house. We had to sleep on my friend's floor and I barely got any sleep. I think I just got overly tired as last week was super busy at work with lots of early starts which always makes my anxiety worse.

Several of the girls had travelled a long way to come and I know they spent a lot of money and effort and I feel so embarrassed that I didn't enjoy things as much as I should have. I don't know what was wrong, I just find it so hard to recover once I've got myself worked up.

I am now super worried about the wedding day, in case I cannot cope with the pressure of all the guests/being centre of attention - we have 80 people coming but half of them are my Fiance's extended family who I barely know and feel shy with :-( I am so scared of the same thing happening and me being unable to cope and getting a migraine. I won't be well rested beforehand as some of my Fiance's family from abroad are arriving to stay at ours for the 3 days before the wedding and need entertaining (its all agreed, I have said it is not the best idea, but I know it means a lot to my Fiance to have them stay with us as we wont see them much otherwise and he is close to them and never gets to see them).

Can anyone else relate to this or has any advice?!

Thanks ladies xx

 

 

Posts

  • OmRumOmRum Posts: 859 New bride

    I can relate. I felt terrible at my hen party because I suffer from anxiety. We went to a bar where we had to do a game to earn cocktails (something to do with the Enigma machine). I don't do games at the best of times due to the anxiety but in this scenario with all the noises and the crowded dark room, the anxiety just went pop and I had to walk out in the end. It didn't help that this was preceded by another game that I didn't enjoy! I was so angry with myself because I thought I had ruined the party and had let my ladies down. I spent the next day in tears for the same reason as you - I was so worried I would get the same panics on the wedding day.

    I know you have family staying before the wedding, but is it possible that you could go and stay somewhere else? Perhaps book yourself into a nice hotel or stay with a friend? You could cite the whole bride and groom not seeing each other as a reason. I know it's all already been agreed, but you could tell your fiance you really don't think you can cope due to the anxiety, and he will understand.

    Make sure you drink plenty of water to stave off headaches and migraines. I use an app on my phone that makes sure I have the right amount everyday, and I've literally not had a migraine since (it's a miracle!).

    Most importantly, if you've not already visited a doctor about the anxiety, do so. If it affects your day to day life, they might be able to help.

  • Hi OmRum,
    Thanks so much for taking the time to reply. I am sorry that you are also suffering with anxiety, but it does help me to know that I am not alone with this as sometimes you can feel so different to everyone else as I don't think any of my other friends or my Fiance seem to really understand how I feel!
    Games are definitely the worst for me too, you feel such an idiot with everyone watching you. I am sorry your hen party wasn't all that you had hoped :(
    Thank you for the water tip, I will try and look up that app that you use!
    I've previously been referred for CBT for anxiety but didn't find it very helpful, and I do have diazepam for when things get bad and triptans for my migraines. Is there anything else that you use?
    OmRum wrote (see post):

    I can relate. I felt terrible at my hen party because I suffer from anxiety. We went to a bar where we had to do a game to earn cocktails (something to do with the Enigma machine). I don't do games at the best of times due to the anxiety but in this scenario with all the noises and the crowded dark room, the anxiety just went pop and I had to walk out in the end. It didn't help that this was preceded by another game that I didn't enjoy! I was so angry with myself because I thought I had ruined the party and had let my ladies down. I spent the next day in tears for the same reason as you - I was so worried I would get the same panics on the wedding day.

    I know you have family staying before the wedding, but is it possible that you could go and stay somewhere else? Perhaps book yourself into a nice hotel or stay with a friend? You could cite the whole bride and groom not seeing each other as a reason. I know it's all already been agreed, but you could tell your fiance you really don't think you can cope due to the anxiety, and he will understand.

    Make sure you drink plenty of water to stave off headaches and migraines. I use an app on my phone that makes sure I have the right amount everyday, and I've literally not had a migraine since (it's a miracle!).

    Most importantly, if you've not already visited a doctor about the anxiety, do so. If it affects your day to day life, they might be able to help.

    Which date are you getting married? We are 10th Nov (19 days to go! eek!)

    x

     

  • OmRumOmRum Posts: 859 New bride

    Hi AnxiousBride.

    To be honest, the more I think back to the hen party, the more pleasant the memories become. I think about how lovely it was for everyone (some people I've not seen for years) to show up for me. I'm also thinking of how much fun everyone else seemed to have, which helps. Hopefully it will be the same for you - I expect you know that it takes a few days after an anxiety attack to start feeling like yourself again, so perhaps in the next few days you'll have a different perspective on things.

    I've been on various meds for both anxiety and depression but not found any that work yet. I also have had a lot of counselling, but I think that made it feel worse. I'm on a waiting list for CBT but not heard anything in a while so I think they've forgotten me.

    I've found that the best thing for me is to have a routine. It's difficult to always stick to, but I do find I wobble more at times of the years like Christmas and summer holidays when routine goes out of the window. I also use a lot of bath products for relaxation, and I try to do yoga when possible. I also know my triggers – alcohol being the main one, which probably didn’t help at the hen party! Another trigger is messy house, which is also a problem at the moment!

    I am getting married mid-December. Very excited for you that your wedding is so soon! I’ve found the planning thing far less stressful than I was expecting, and I think I will miss it when it’s over.

  • I think that would be embarrassing and awkward even for those without anxiety. A lot of hen do activities are really only going to be enjoyed by brides with a certain personality type, and I guess that's just not me!  I would seriously never do a pole dancing class, zip lining, pub games, male strippers, etc.  Sorry, nope, no way. I give you a WHOLE lot of credit for taking your BM's feelings into account and giving it your best try.  I don't think I could have done it. 

    I don't know if your anxiety varies by trigger, but your wedding day was presumably planned by you, and whilst you might be anxious, I would think it will be a happy kind of anxious.  I think everyone is anxious on their wedding day to some degree, I don't really think there is anyone that isn't.  Maybe short of adding a prescription to the mix, try some other anxiety relieving tricks in advance - like visualization, meditation, etc.  If you do decide to go done the prescription route, I'd make sure to start with something very, very low dose, and make sure to try it in advance.  I tried a drug like that once for a huge event and sadly, can't to this day remember very much about it. 

  • Please don’t worry about the wedding day sweetheart.  Yes you will be the centre of attention, but this will be together with your husband and bridal party for support.

    Also no one will expect you to put on some sort of sexual athletic performance while you are watched by everyone including some creep in tight shorts you met 20 minutes ago!  

  • Thank you all so much for the lovely comments, which have really made me feel much better. I was scared you would all say I had been awful for not being more grateful to my Bridesmaids and putting a brave face on, but instead you've made me feel reassured that I haven't reacted too wildly abnormally, and that the wedding will be OK as I am in control of it. Thank you xx

  • MrsCToBeeMrsCToBee Posts: 2,949 New bride

    I had to do a Dirty Dancing dance class on my SIL's hen do which I found mortifying, and I actually only attended 1 day of a 2 day hen for another friend because the activity just wasn't something I was comfortable with.

    Don't beat yourself up - to be honest, since these are meant to be your best friends, you would have thought they would have known it wasn't for you and would leave you squirming with embarrassment. 

  • I can totally sympathise as I would have hated having to do a pole dancing class! At least you put on a brave face and didn't let on to your friends that their plans weren't entirely to your tastes :) I think that your wedding day will be much more like the parts of the hen do that you did enjoy - not being obliged to do something embarrassing and just spending time with your loved ones :) I hope you have a great day!

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