My old college roommate asked me to be her maid of honor but we’d grown apart. I wasn’t a fan of big weddings in the first place and the seven months of planning I had to endure seemed to drag on forever. I didn’t really want to be part of the wedding and after this experience, I’m pretty sure I don’t even want a wedding of my own in the future.
1. YOU HAVE TO PICK BETWEEN DEBT-FREE OR STRESS-FREE.
If I had all the money in the world, I could hire a wedding planner. I could book the most fabulous, all-inclusive venue in Malibu. I could bring in vendors to take care of food, music, flowers, and decorations, as well as all of the logistical details. However, if you don’t have $30,000 or more to spend on a wedding, all of the work falls on your shoulders—or worse, your friends’ shoulders.
2. YOU NEED TO HAVE A LOT OF FRIENDS.
Being the maid of honor in a wedding for a bride that doesn’t have a lot of friends was rough. Usually, the bride can rely on her bridal party to help throw her a bridal shower and plan the bachelorette party. However, if you’re introverted, antisocial, or simply can’t handle a lot of close friends, then relying on a wedding party to help you plan is not really possible.
3. YOU FORCE OTHERS TO DO WORK FOR YOU.
As the maid of honor, all of the work fell on my shoulders. I was asked to be the maid of honor with a RingPop and a card, then I was told that I needed to plan and pay for the entire bridal shower and bachelorette party. It was a responsibility that I didn’t want but felt forced into. I wasn’t even allowed to ask the other bridesmaids for help because the bride wasn’t close to them and didn’t want them to be burdened. The unfortunate thing about trying to plan a cheap wedding is that you need friends to help you do all the work. However, as someone who was in that position, I realized I never wanted to do that to any of my friends.
4. YOUR FRIENDS MAY NOT BE FRIENDS WITH EACH OTHER.
The bridal party tends to spend a lot of time with each other, especially those who do work together in the planning. As a bride, it’s important to remember that all of your friends may not get along with each other. I learned this the hard way when I had to work with the bride’s sister, who was very demanding, to say the least. Personalities clash and in the end, it just makes the bride’s life more miserable.
5. NOBODY HAS THE TIME.
People are busy. We all have our own lives and not everyone has the time to drop everything and help plan a wedding. Some of your bridesmaids might live in different towns, and others probably have full-time jobs and a social life that keeps them plenty busy. It can be hard enough to get time off for the wedding, let alone finding the time to help plan it. It seems like a burden that I personally wouldn’t want to put on people.
6. WEDDINGS ARE WAY TOO EXPENSIVE.
Even if you decide to go the stressful route in order to save money, weddings are still expensive. Unless you’re eloping, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you’ll spend more than you budgeted for. In the wedding I was just in, the bride was really trying to keep the total price under $5,000. However, after buying a wedding dress, simple decorations, and food to feed their large guest list, their cheap wedding ended up costing around $12,000. No thanks.
7. ALL THE PLANNING JUST ISN’T FUN.
I can’t tell you how many times I heard the bride complain about how much work this wedding was. She was constantly stressed and never happy. Planning her wedding wasn’t fun and it’s supposed to be the happiest time of your life. That never seems to be the case for brides.
8. THE STRESS STRAINS YOUR RELATIONSHIP.
Fighting with your fiance is the last thing any engaged couple wants to do, but somehow wedding planning can cause that. Whether you disagree on the size of your wedding, what food you want to serve, or the overall budget, most couples usually tend to compromise. However, often times the bride takes on a lot of the planning details which can cause bitterness in the relationship because she feels like she’s doing all of the work for a wedding that’s not even what she wants.
9. YOUR WEDDING ISN’T REALLY ABOUT YOU.
If you have opinionated friends or family, you can say goodbye to your wedding. All of a sudden, your wedding will become something you are doing for everyone else. You’ll focus on what food the guests will like better if your guests will be mad there is no alcohol and how the venue isn’t fancy enough. Unfortunately, most brides get manipulated into compromising for someone else.
10. I SAW HOW THE WEDDING DAY COULD BE WORTH IT BUT IT STILL WASN’T.
In all honesty, the wedding was perfect. We started right on time, people got food, I didn’t forget my speech, and the venue was beautifully decorated. They had music, people danced, and some cried. After most of the work was done, I stood there, looking around and thinking about how everything was perfect. Most brides would probably be overwhelmed with a sense accomplishment and the thought that all of the hard work was worth it, which I could finally understand. It was all worth it in that moment. However, it still wasn’t worth it to me. The months of stress, the demand on friends, the financial burden, the loss of control, and the time spent planning were all too much. Even the most perfect day wasn’t worth so many terrible ones.