Our friendship grows and then the cycle starts over and she hurts me again. This has happened so many times now I just can’t take it anymore and really want out of the relationship. Most recently when it happened, I told her I didn’t know if I could forgive her again. She promised me a proper response (as well as actual changes) as soon as she had the chance. In the meantime, because I am so important to her, would I still be her bridesmaid? I said yes, and commented that because she is Mormon, and I won’t be allowed in the church to be paired with a groomsmen and walk down the aisle (I’m not Mormon), it wouldn’t really matter if things didn’t work out and I couldn’t do it.
Now it is the week of the wedding. She has still not responded to my email or actually apologized for her abuse over the years. As well, I have almost no information about the wedding or my duties. Last Saturday was the bridal shower and it was a really terrible for me. She acted like nothing had ever happened while I experienced a two-hour anxiety attack. I was so physically and emotionally uncomfortable I could barely talk or force a smile. She called me Tuesday night of this week and left me a message informing me that my boyfriend and I are expected to come to the reception site and help set up on Friday afternoon and attend at a mock-rehearsal dinner that evening, and that she would get Saturday’s details to me in the near future.
My boyfriend lives eight hours away, and I actually had to cancel a flight to visit him and purchase one for him to come here for the wedding. In my excitement to see him, I made plans for Friday afternoon (when he arrives) and evening, as well as Saturday morning (I have only been informed that the reception is at 6pm). The thought of spending more time with this person who has hurt me so much brings tears to my eyes. Moreover, I know that above all this is her special day, and I need to suck it up and act happy if only for the pictures or while she’s talking to me. But I just don’t know how I will do it. I have been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, and because of that I can’t always control my nerves. It’s not whether or not I should suck it up for her big day, it’s if I can.
I’ve already told her that I have previous plans for Friday, but that I would try to work things out and she said I didn’t need to come. Will going to the dinner make me more comfortable in preparation for Saturday? Should I only subject myself to this experience once and just go on Saturday? Or should I just say to her: “We didn’t know whether or not this would work out. It’s not. I hope you have a wonderful marriage and I wish you every happiness, but I can’t be there.”? — Anxious Bridesmaid
You know, if you honestly feel in your heart that the friendship is over and you don’t know how on earth you’ll make it through her wedding, then by all means, bail on her at the last minute on her wedding day. Rest assured that if/when you do that, the friendship will be over, but maybe that’s what’s best anyway since it doesn’t seem like either of you is terribly invested or feels like there’s much to lose anyhow. If you feel like a jerk pulling this, then for the love of God, do whatever it is you do to manage your anxiety — medication, meditation, visualization, deep breathing, whatever — suck it up and get through the day (skip the rehearsal dinner, though, since she already told you you didn’t need to be there), and bail on the friendship afterward if that’s what you want to do.
In the future, don’t agree to be in someone’s wedding whom you have such mixed feelings for.
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