In light of recent columns, I thought this column from way back in 2011 deserved a re-post. It was written by a guest contributor, Hannah Ehrig, a freelance journalist who was married a few weeks after this originally ran.
After countless hours of wedding preparation consisting of watching Bridezillas, My Fair Wedding and Four Weddings and helping friends plan their own nuptials, I have seen some things, including a lot of questionable behavior from the brides. Why do women think that because they are getting married they can treat others without respect or common courtesy? And how do you know when you are crossing the line? Here is a list of 15 ways to tell if you are turning into a bridezilla!
1. You throw your best friend a birthday party…and invite your caterer, coordinator, and photographer so they know your “party style.”
2. You yell at your flower girl for tripping and ruining the rehearsal…even though she’s three.
3. You call in sick for work for wedding beauty treatments…twice a month for the entire year of planning.
4. You decide on a dress well above your budget…because Mom and Dad can afford it, right? After all, they don’t have another daughter like you.
5. Your bridesmaid picks up the white roses you ordered and you realize they are more eggshell than pure white, so you demand your money back.
6. You realize everything in your wedding is too eggshell v. pure white and throw a fit.
7. You “fire” your MOH because she has to leave your bachelorette party early to go to work.
8. You tell your nephew he can no longer be your ring bearer because he lost his first tooth and will ruin the photos.
9. Your groom asks for one layer of a certain cake flavor and you say no because it doesn’t go with your theme.
10. You upgrade your engagement ring a week before your wedding because you found out a married friend’s ring cost more than yours.
11. You are newly engaged and just set your wedding date a week before that of your best friend, who has been engaged for a year, because you have to be the first one to get married.
12. One month before your wedding you tell the girl you asked to be your bridesmaid when you first got engaged that she is not invited to your wedding at all because you invited too many people.
13. Your fiancé’s ringtone for you is the Godzilla theme.
14. When your fiancé gives you wedding input, you make sure that King Wrong knows whose day it really is.
15. You start to walk a little more slowly and feel like something is dragging you down. When you look down, your feet have become green and scaley and you have a tail. You are turning into a full-fledged monster!
* Hannah Ehrig is a freelance journalist and aspiring author who got engaged over the summer. She is head-deep in planning her New Year’s Eve wedding.
bethany November 17, 2011, 1:37 pm
Reading this list makes me SO HAPPY that my wedding is over!! Luckily none of those described me during the wedding planning process, but still, even with a level head and reasonable expections, wedding planning takes a lot out of you!
callmehobo November 17, 2011, 1:52 pm
Are people really like this??? Please, please tell me it’s not real!
TaraMonster November 17, 2011, 2:01 pm
Oh it’s really fucking real. Excuse my language. But some weddings I’ve been in have permanently made me a bridesmaid with the mouth of a sailor.
callmehobo November 17, 2011, 2:47 pm
Ughghgh. I’m really just gonna have a potluck dinner at the farm. Because lets be serious, the food is at least 75% of why people come.
I just don’t understand why people stress about weddings- I thought that was supposed to be the fun part and the marriage is frustrating, hard work part!
Yammy November 17, 2011, 4:57 pm
The other 25% come for the open bar.
evanscr05 November 18, 2011, 8:41 am
The stress about weddings is that you all of sudden go from dreaming about what you and your fiance want to dealing with the expectations of every. single. person. you. know. Somewhere shortly after he pops the question and you’ve told everyone in your life, you start dealing with other people’s comments, concerns, expectations of what your day should be like and the things people tell you can really make your mouth drop. Family dynamics, budgetary constraints, all these little details you never knew you had to think about, etc. and it starts to weigh on you. EVERY bride gets stressed at some point, even if only on a minor level. But not every stressed out bride turns in to a crazed bridezilla. There are other ‘zillas that I think people forget about, too – Momzillas, bridesmaidzillas, groomzillas, vendorzillas, etc. Mine took 15 months to plan, and for the most part it was fun (this is directly related to paying for it primarily by ourselves), but by the time the day got here, I was so freaking glad all of the bullshit you have to deal with beforehand was going to end. No one really gets it until they’re in it.
Ange September 1, 2015, 12:10 am
honeybeenicki November 17, 2011, 2:16 pm
Oh yeah, its real. I had a bridesmaid-zilla. She tried to take over my whole wedding and would get angry about stupid stuff even if I said I didn’t care.
Turtledove November 17, 2011, 3:27 pm
Oh yeah. It’s real. I used to work in the wedding industry. This is the reason I quit.
honeybeenicki November 17, 2011, 5:33 pm
You are a brave person. I’d never work in any wedding-related industry.
mandalee November 17, 2011, 6:00 pm
Yes, people are really like this. I had two friends that dropped out of my wedding because THEY were such bridezillas. I asked for next to nothing from them except to show up, but they went out of their to ruin my bachelorette party because they were pissed I was getting married first. They were sooo insane, they make these points look tame in comparison. Needless to say, I am very, very happy they are no longer my friends so I’m not forced to pretend I’m okay with their behavior on their wedding day.
eggifwinter November 17, 2011, 7:04 pm
#12 happened to me. Yep, these people are real.
Flake November 18, 2011, 5:48 am
Yep.. One of my friends chose her wedding party based strictly on how they would look in the pictures, which meant that her overweight best friend of more than 10 years was out and random chicks from work were in.
Taylor November 17, 2011, 2:00 pm
Are these based on real experience? I know 15 is, but the rest? #8??
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 3:29 pm
I think #10 sounds the most ridiculous/unrealistic. Like, really, who actually does that? You just got it. Wait 25 years. Then upgrade.
Budj November 17, 2011, 3:33 pm
Apparently you don’t have any relatives or friends from New Jersey? I know that’s not the only place….but my SIL and her friend circle definitely make this one a truth.
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 4:01 pm
I just played with the “make your own engagement” ring that kept flashing at me in the corner of the screen. Turns out that what i thought was a normal ring (aka creating my ideal imaginary i can have anything in the world and it doesn’t matter that i’m currently single – ring) would be $22,000 (partially because its conflict free). Definitely didn’t anticipate that. So it turns out I know less about this than I thought. But I CANNOT imagine asking for a freaking upgrade because my girlfriend’s was bigger if you were happy with it in the first place.
Also, big rings usually look bad and/or tacky. Anything over 1.5 carats usually goes down in attractiveness as it gets bigger.
cdubs November 17, 2011, 7:50 pm
Um…that’s not really a ‘New Jersey’ thing…
Taylor November 17, 2011, 3:52 pm
I’m pretty sure if I told my fiance to upgrade my ring before the wedding that it would give him second thoughts!
GatorGirl November 18, 2011, 11:38 am
I know an individual who’s wedding is still 6 months away and she is already demanding a 1 year anniversary ring. Full of diamonds.
Also there is the new trend of “push” presents- jewlery/gifts for delivering a baby…isn’t the kid present enough??
6napkinburger November 18, 2011, 3:45 pm
I think that term is nauseiating, but i think the idea of a husband/lover/boyfriend/girlfriend giving her wife/lover/girlfriend a present on the day of their child’s birth is sweet. I usually associate some memory with jewelry (like who gave it to me, and when) and giving the gift after all the hormones kick in make for a nice memory.
TaraMonster November 17, 2011, 2:11 pm
I just accepted a bridesmaid position in one of my best friends’ weddings. And AT a wedding last week (good lord, what does this say about my life right now!?) some of my co bridesmaids were speculating on how she will behave. I was all “oh but she’s a laid back person. This wedding shouldn’t be too bad.” But then we started talking about how she gets flustered over fine details all the time. Like when we’re planning an outing- we leave her out of the planning because it’s not her forté, and she’s usually cool with that. But I swear all our eyes became as big as dinner plates as we realized at the same moment what this will mean if ANYTHING goes wrong… I’m officially terrified.
Jess of CityGirlsWorld.com November 17, 2011, 2:58 pm
Because I am convinced that EVERY WOMAN, no matter how normal, relaxed, down-to-earth, and otherwise awesome –temporarily becomes an a-hole for her wedding. I have a few ideas why (pressure, finances, family drama, the list goes on) but for whatever reason, every decision becomes THE decision. It’s all do or die. It’s all “once in a lifetime.” And it’s all coming at shamefully inflated costs (wedding anything = double the price).
And yes, you sure are “accepting a position” –one where you will perform free labor over the next 12 months. Strike that, you will pay (maybe 1k-2k) for the privilege of arranging flowers, developing cute games, arranging a slide show, singing your best friends praises, making hats out of ribbon, designated driving, addressing hundreds of envelopes, and wearing an ugly dress. And none of it counts a shred if you are caught, even once, without a beaming smile of support on your face.
Luckily I’m not bitter. Not. at. all……….
Lydia November 17, 2011, 3:20 pm
I’m sorry you have apparently had bad experiences, but honestly, not every woman is like this. I’m currently planning my wedding and certainly not every decision is do or die whatever – some women manage to still be relaxed and rational even while getting married. And paying 1-2k as a bridesmaid doesn’t have to be the norm either – some people have entire wedding budgets that are lower than that!
FireStar November 17, 2011, 4:48 pm
Nope. I got married with no bridesmaids or attendants; picked my dress without trying it on before buying it (my poor best friend); and skipped all the “once in a lifetime” drama. It’s a party to celebrate the beginning of a marriage. The marriage is the most important part – the wedding is just the party. I went into it thinking if my fiance ends up as my husband at the end of the night then it was a success. And in the end I had a perfect wedding – we had all of loved ones from around the world, we had great food, great music and everyone danced until we sent them home. I think women just buy into the hype and use it as an excuse to unleash the worst of themselves on the world. I’m always amazed when the men don’t come to their sense and leave.
mandalee November 17, 2011, 6:03 pm
There are so crazy brides out there, and I’m sorry you dealt with them, but rest assurd, they are not alllll like that. I asked for nothing of my bridesmaids. I picked a color, they picked a dress from anywhere on their budget, I really did not care what it looked like. My mom throw my shower, and I invited all their boyfriends/fiances etc to the rehearsal dinner and paid for some of their hotels, etc.
All the wedding planning shit brides making bridesmaids do I truly don’t get. I mean if one of my friends insisted on stuffing envelopes, I’d be like hell yeah, but I would never think to ask someone to do my party planning for me.
LennyBee November 17, 2011, 6:42 pm
Wow, I’ve been lucky I guess. I’ve been a bridesmaid twice, and both times the brides were awesome and laid-back.
Red_Lady November 17, 2011, 8:02 pm
Same here! I’ve been a bridesmaid 3 times, plus an MOH once, and I didn’t experience much drama for any of them. And the most I spent on any one of them was about $300.
Kate B November 18, 2011, 12:33 pm
Me too! I was MOH for a friend. There were four bridesmaids total. We all went to the store together to choose our dresses. The bride told us the choice was entirely up to us as she wanted us to have dresses we would wear again. It took us one hour to find a dress we all liked. We agreed completely on the color, style, material, etc. Total price = $85. The bride was shocked we had done all this in an hour. She said it was too easy. We offered to stage a hair-pulling catfight during the ceremony if it would make her feel better. So, it can be drama-free.
Jess of CityGirlsWorld.com November 18, 2011, 8:40 am
You’ll have to excuse a little use of hyperbole on my original comment. That was me venting a little. When I said ALL brides, I didn’t truly mean 100% of brides 🙂 There are those (I’ve heard about them at least!) who truly have low-key weddings like the ones you’ve described –especially those that avoid many of the traditional rituals and trappings. I applaud those brides. In fact, I am in awe of them.
AND, as I should have detailed further, I truly do GET why so many brides come unglued. I’ve watched it from the front row. Wonderful level-headed women who become unraveled during the wedding process but return to their normal pleasant selves after its over. These were and are dear friends and I have sympathized with them at times during the process.
You see, I really don’t mean to attack BRIDES as much as I want to attack the WEDDING MACHINE that so many of us (bridesmaids included) seem to get caught up in. The multiple events, gifts, favors, apparel, mailings, services, appointments, etc. I’ve seen so many well-intentioned friends get sucked into spending far too much money for things that weren’t really important to them. And that creates enormous stress (stress over things like the colors of the flowers). They may not have wanted to go the traditional route but parents, friends, in-laws, venue directors, bridal gown shop owners, etc manage to intervene and there is an escalation factor that seems really hard to control.
Recently I was speaking to an acquaintance who (by all accounts!) had a very small casual outdoor wedding which avoided most of the superficial bells and whistles. I was curious how she managed it and I mentioned to her how most people I know got sucked into the wedding quicksand and couldn’t get out. She said to me, “it’s funny you say that because I can tell you that the hardest thing about planning a small casual wedding was resisting the pressure to make it bigger and more complicated.”
evanscr05 November 18, 2011, 8:49 am
Not every bride is like that. I definitely wasn’t. In fact, I was told many many times I was too generous to my bridesmaids. I paid for EVERYTHING for them, except their dress, which, though I wanted it to be the same, I let them pick and they loved it. I didn’t make them do a whole lot either. Mostly just my MOH because she’s also my roommate, but she offered to help. A lot of things we either paid to have done for us, or I did it by myself. In terms of the decisions of stuff, those were discussions that were just between my fiance and I, and EVERYTHING was a joint decision unless it was something he didn’t really care one way or the other about. In terms of the stuff your bridesmaids throw for you, I offered to chip in money and told them not to go crazy cause I didn’t want to break their budgets, but they never took my money and went crazy anyway on their own volition. In fact, I still razz them about paying $100 for a cake for my shower when we could have made one for like $5 (though it was certainly more delicious and beautiful than any I could have made). I’ve been a bridesmaid for crazy brides before, and though they do exist, it’s definitely not a mold that every brides wants to fit.
GatorGirl November 18, 2011, 11:44 am
Unfortunatly I think the other commentors are the exception to the rule. If you look at national averages it costs something like $1600 on average to be a bridesmaid. (It definitely cost me that much). I agree it is all about being married at the end of the day and the union you are creating, but the real truth is weddings are a mutli-million dollar industry. They are commercialised, dreamed about, over-hyped, ect ect and a lot, if not most brides get swept up in all of it and forget what it’s really about.
My family owns a banquet hall and I can not even begin to list the crazy drama that has happened surrounding weddings there.
thyme November 17, 2011, 2:20 pm
A friend of mine, who is usually not selfish at all, turned into a major bridezilla. She insisted on ordering expensive bridesmaid’s dresses over the phone from somewhere far away. The place wouldn’t let them just order a particular size; they insisted on having the girls’ measurements instead. When the dresses came, they were all waaaaaay too big, and when the bridesmaids showed them to the bride and said that the alterations were going to cost over $100, on top of the cost of the dress, the bride said, “It’s your dress; that’s not my problem.”
Jess of CityGirlsWorld.com November 17, 2011, 3:01 pm
I wouldn’t even call that selfish. It’s pretty much standard. And I actually blame the bridal gown business more than the bride for this kind of thing.
Giving in your measurements is SUCH a scam because it’s a worthless exercise. The dresses always come too big. They always need to be altered. And the alterations always cost FAR more than any other dress because it’s “bridal.”
I’m a wedding grinch.
bethany November 17, 2011, 3:20 pm
Get your alterations done at a dry cleaners vs at the store where you buy the dress. They’re usually about half of what they charge at the store.
Jess of CityGirlsWorld.com November 18, 2011, 8:27 am
This is a good tip and I have done exactly that (although some dry cleaners will refuse to work with silk). I’ve even tried saying “it’s a party dress” to try to get them off the scent, so to speak, haha. But as soon as they lay eyes on that pastel silk…. haha, they still get you. I paid $80 last time to get it hemmed and that was shopping around…. I like in a major city so that might not help, but still, it seems mostly unavoidable.
GatorGirl November 18, 2011, 12:03 pm
You’re so right about the scam. I was measured and they ordered “accordingly.” I had my first round of alterations done at the bridal shop, where they flat out refused to take the bust of my dress in. There was about two inches of extra fabric in the back, the lady insisted it fit properly. So there goes $75 to do the hem (which had to be redone). I then took it to my regular tailer who does most of my clothes to have the bust taken in and the hem fixed as it was lopsided. Another $100…I have a $400 cotten candy pink floor length gown.
honeybeenicki November 17, 2011, 2:53 pm
Holy cow. One of my friends had $300 dresses and $75 shoes for us. It was a lot for me to have to pay for since I was a broke college student, but I managed. For my wedding, I let my girls pick out their own dress (as long as it was black and I did want them to all wear the same dress) and we added a red sash to it. Then they all got together and decided to buy the same shoes (I didn’t care what they wore on their feet as long as it was either black or red). Why make someone pay ridiculous amounts of money for a dress they are never going to wear again? (Although, 2 of my 3 girls have actually worn their bridesmaids dresses from my wedding again since its just a plain black cocktail dress).
GertietheDino November 17, 2011, 2:27 pm
16. Not allowing people to ask you any type of question for the week leading up to the wedding (my sister went a little nuts for her nuptials). Frustrating and funny to witness though.
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 2:29 pm
[No offense but i mean there’s kind of no other way to take this]
16. You plan your wedding on New Years!
I get three-day weekend weddings for religious reasons, or because that way people won’t have to take off from work, but New Years isn’t one of those. And you just co-opted the New Year’s of all your guests.
I’m sure tons of people will come back at me saying “no one is forcing them to come and if they don’t want to, they don’t have to” but that’s weak.
mcminnem November 17, 2011, 2:43 pm
Why would you even want a wedding on New Years? I mean, unless you live in the southern hemisphere, that practically guarantees you one of the shortest, darkest, coldest days you could have chosen. Who wants a snowed-in wedding?
bethany November 17, 2011, 2:44 pm
I would love to attend a NYE wedding! New Years is SO overrated, I think it would be great to have something to do other than watch the stupid ball drop.
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 2:58 pm
ALL of my cousins have their weddings on July 4th. It is SO annoying.
bethany November 17, 2011, 3:21 pm
If it’s SO annoying, why don’t you just not go to them? If I knew that someone thought my wedding was annoying, I certainly wouldn’t have wanted them to come!
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 3:35 pm
It’s so annoying that they choose that day because its one of the only days I could reasonably do something fun with my friends, but i still love them. (and that all of them do. Multiple. Like every year. in a row.)
It’s like if one of your best friends is in town for one night and chooses to go to a restaurant that you hate, but they love. You love your friend, you want to see her, so you’ll suck it up and go, but seriously, there are a billion other restaurants, did she have to pick that one? You aren’t going to not see her because you don’t like the restaurant. Same thing. They could pick just about any other weekend and i wouldn’t be annoyed, but just because I’m annoyed doesn’t mean I don’t want to go to their wedding.
Carolynasaurus November 17, 2011, 3:37 pm
Because everyone finds weddings annoying, but we go for the food/out of obligation/to look hot so our ex who’s there will be jealous/the get hammered/to see inside that cool building downtown that you’ve always walked past but never been inside/to get laid.
bethany November 17, 2011, 4:25 pm
I beg to differ. I love going to weddings of people who I care about.
silver_dragon_girl November 17, 2011, 4:35 pm
Yeah, I definitely go to get hammered. My cousin’s dry wedding a few years ago was pretty boring once dinner was over. Nobody dances sober.
mandalee November 17, 2011, 6:07 pm
I agree with Bethany. I am begging one of many recently engaged friends to have a New Year’s wedding. We always make these huge plans for NYE and it always get insane, someone gets cranky. I can’t think of anything better than an open bar with my friends all in one place.
Carolynasaurus November 17, 2011, 2:46 pm
I have a friend that had her wedding on the Fourth of July. It’s nice because it means the odds of people having work off are higher, but you are kind preempting any standing traditions and plans they could have had for the day.
But I guess you get free fireworks…?
MJ November 17, 2011, 2:46 pm
I’ve been to a couple of NYE weddings, and it’s fun! You have a built-in party if the reception goes until midnight, and if it doesn’t, you have a built-in pregame for your party later. Yay!
(but my NYE’s never live up to the hype, so maybe I’m just glad for something to do)
silver_dragon_girl November 17, 2011, 4:37 pm
NYE almost always disappoints me, too.
neuroticbeagle November 18, 2011, 3:13 pm
That was why I was glad my cousin had her wedding on NYE. I finally had something to do on NYE, and it came with free martinis!
JK November 17, 2011, 3:07 pm
I thought the exact same thing. Mind you I feel the same about destination weddings, or pretty much anything too extravagant.
Nadine November 17, 2011, 4:45 pm
6napkinburger, this is the first thing I thought of too.
evanscr05 November 18, 2011, 9:14 am
One of my bridesmaids got married on New Years Day this year, and I’d have to agree, it was probably not the best idea. NYE, maybe, but the day after people are drinking their hearts out? I’m surprised she didn’t have MORE people that ended up not going after RSVPing yes because they were so hung over. But, I don’t fault her for picking that day overall, though. It was a date that had meaning to her and her husband and while I only have to celebrate it once, she gets to celebrate it for a life time, and that is the most important part. The only thing I didn’t like that she did was she only invited +1’s for people in relationships if she had met the SO. One of our good friends from college didn’t get to bring her live-in boyfriend of 6 years simply because she had never met him. Having had a wedding, why would it matter if you had never met him? You’re going to spend 5 seconds with her, so let her bring her man so she has someone to dance with and hang out with. Plus, it was out of town for her. She ended up not going and it caused a huge fight. I don’t blame my friend for skipping out because she couldn’t celebrate NYE with her sig other.
cdubs November 18, 2011, 6:46 pm
Thank you. I think it’s SO rude to have your wedding on NYE. I don’t want to go to your wedding! I want to go out and celebrate with my friends and watch the ball drop. I’m also not a fan of people who have their weddings on holiday weekends either, because it does mean people have to give up holiday plans. Rude.
oppositeofzen November 17, 2011, 2:50 pm
9. Groom’s cake. Problem solved. Amiright? 🙂
All I can say is I’m glad my bf didn’t act like this before her’s. She did start losing it the day of the wedding, but I could give her that. It was suppose to be an outdoor wedding, but we had heavy rain and thunderstorm warnings. But, I’m also the MOH that called her a “b****” on her wedding day. Everyone kept telling her she was beautiful, which was the truth, and she almost started crying. I whispered that in her ear and she started laughing. To this day, she loves to tell that story.
Carolynasaurus November 17, 2011, 2:51 pm
I have to say, I think every bride is entitled to one (ONE!) bridezilla moment. A moment, like 15 minutes, and then moving past it. You plan for months and months and at some point, no matter how well you plan, something will unravel and cause a meltdown.
For me, there was a severe frost about a month before my wedding and the florist thought she might not be able to get me the exact flowers I wanted. She promised I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between the chosen ones and the substitutes (and she probably just shouldn’t have told me because I really wouldn’t have known), and I just curled up in my fiance’s bed and started uncontrollably sobbing. Not my finest moment.
There’s just such a backlash now to not be a bridezilla that I think a lot of women (at least a lot of the sane ones I know) are bottling up the crazy until it explodes.
evanscr05 November 18, 2011, 9:17 am
OMG I know! We had, what I am calling, the “Great Flood of 2011” on the east coast this year and it flooded a whole bunch of roads the DAY BEFORE my wedding. I had a minor freak out moment, for maybe 5 minutes while we figured out our game plan, but yeah, it’s okay to have a moment, so long as it’s a moment and not a months-long bashing of everyone you know.
Sarah November 17, 2011, 3:00 pm
Hahaha, as a connoisseur of bad wedding reality shows, I love 5, because SOOOOO many brides freak their sh*t over that. They know things in nature are not going to look like white out, right??
I think when the times comes I will get a little wedding obsessed because I love weddings so much and it has to be PERFECT PERFECT PERFECT, but I don’t think I could inflict my freaky obsession on anybody else.
Me November 17, 2011, 4:14 pm
I’m planning my wedding right now and dealing with a bridesmaid-zilla… i’ve been trying to handle things on my own b/c i know my friends and family are all really busy (especially with the holidays coming up), and got an email recently telling me that i’m “not making her feel special and involved” because i’m not talking to her about wedding stuff every. single. day.
combine that with a mother/stepmother throwdown over invitation wording, and brain go explody.
SGMcG November 17, 2011, 4:14 pm
When I was planning my wedding, I think my parents were more ‘Zilla than I. Dad insisted on me wearing a long gown during the ceremony or he didn’t want me married – so I had to get another dress along with the cocktail length dress I had already purchased. Mom was upset that we made our guests walk up to get slices of our wedding cake, but we figured it was a good way for our guests to indulge in the Chocolate fountain (which Dad also insisted on getting).
I also think my husband was more ‘Zilla than I, if only because we had a Godzilla loves Hello Kitty Angel theme for our wedding.
Nadine November 17, 2011, 4:47 pm
Incidentally, has anyone seen “Bride Wars”? I really love Anne Hathaway, but god I turned it off ten minutes in. Do girls really dream of their weddings all their lives? Is it ever worth fighting with people about? Maybe no one in my family get married, but shit, it just seems like a big party that people get upset about.
JK November 17, 2011, 7:24 pm
From all the advice columns I read, it would appear that in the US weddings are a lot bigger deal than for those of us down under. 🙂
And I love me silly comedies, but that movie was terrible! I did watch it all (typical sunday night with nothing on cable), but really awful.
honeybeenicki November 17, 2011, 5:39 pm
I think some girls do. I didn’t know I was going to get married until I met my now husband. Up to that point, I had not intended to get married (or have kids and now I have 2 stepkids and we’re talking about having another).
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 6:21 pm
Clearly these are ridiculous, but I’m also a little tired of the whole “bridezilla” thing too and about hearing how “terrible and overbloated the wedding industry is.” It isn’t that I don’t agree. I do. I also think its ridiculous that things are twice as much money when they are for “weddings.” And that there is no reason to go into debt for a wedding. But some behaviors are perfectly acceptable given the stress of planning a gigantic party that has a lot riding on it.
If I told a friend that somehow,out of nowhere at work, I got saddled planning a party for 200 VIPs people with a strict budget and had to choose and plan everything basically by myself (venue negotiations, center pieces, invitations, guest list, menu selection, etc.) and I had zero party planning experience and it was not remotely in my job description, they’d be crazily sympathetic. As it got closer, and I got more and more stressed, if I burst out crying or snapped at my boyfriend but then apologized, they would think that the stress had gotten to me and would talk me through it (breathe.. its ok, you’re awesome, you can do it!),again, incredibly sympathetic. Even if I had an “assistant” helping me with some of the decisions, I’d still be allowed to be overwhelmed. No one would say “Drama queen” and “she thinks the world revolves around her.” But that’s exactly what people would say about someone getting stressed about wedding, especially by those who haven’t planned one. (For the record, I’m in that group; I have not planned one.)
Certainly, there are bridezillas. But someone caring about small details and taking responsibility for ensuring they are correct is not a bridezilla. Someone who wants to make sure she gets what she paid for is not a bridezilla. Someone who cares if things look a certain way or don’t clash is not a bridezilla, as long as she provides reasonable alternatives, plenty of time to handle it, and are reasonable in her requests (the person above who’s friend said they could all get different brands of red shoes made me cringe a little, but even a bride who would request either one brand of red shoe or any black shoe would be called a Bridezilla by some because she cared that they clashed, on principle.) Especially if they do all of this in advance of the wedding and apologize. The girl who can’t enjoy her wedding because she’s too busy yelling at the caterer is clearly a bridezilla. But the girl who feels the need to go over the menu with the caterer one last time the day before the wedding because half of her family is allergic to wheat, and the other half is allergic to soy, and she absolutely hates fennel, is not. She’s picky, she might be annoying to the caterer, but she isn’t a bridezilla.
jujy November 17, 2011, 6:41 pm
The only (but critical!) difference to me in your alternative scenario is that the poor girl is being saddled with this responsibility through her job. The crazy pressures and expectations at stake are from her employer and her sense of obligation to meet them. Given the choice, she would probably avoid that sort of assignment. Dinner for 200 VIPs on a budget with 1,000 moving targets and endless permutations for failure? No thanks.
But the bride going bonkers and having stress meltdowns, sobfests, and constant apologies to everyone around her? Really, who is putting her in that situation?
lisa November 17, 2011, 6:59 pm
Agree. The bridezilla thing has been blown WAY out of proportion. Wanting to look extra special on your wedding doesn’t mean you’re a bridezilla. Also, blown out of proportion… the whole bridesmaid thing.
Nadine November 17, 2011, 7:03 pm
I agree partly, mostly because I think Bridezilla is pretty sexist and reminds of how women are always shown as crazy, materialistic freaks who overreact about everything possible.
But I think the difference between the job event and the wedding is that the bride is essentially throwing herself a party, and the ratio of ‘elaborate:how great she thinks she is’ seems to be pretty exact.
Also, she does have an assistant. How is the groom not at least an assistant? Its his day too.
bittergaymark November 17, 2011, 7:18 pm
Well, if so many women DIDN’T act like that to the point where it was fucking practically normal networks would probably have a tough time casting reality show after show of women behaving like depraved shallow bitches who only give a flying fuck about money… Many seem to revel in their roles as Bridezilla. And our nation of Reality TV only glamorizes this and more and more of you yearn to one day act this way, I guess. I mean, if you didn’t find it all so entertaining and “hilarious” you’d all just fucking switch the channel to a show that could actually, I don’t know, use your brains… END OF RANT.
WELL, ALMOST…. PS — Commenting that the groom is like/comparable to an assistant? Egads, talk about proving my fucking point…
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 7:27 pm
Grooms are only the “assistant” because, usually, they want to be. “Whatever you want, honey” is possibly the most annoying thing a guy can say when asked his opinion. I’m sure most brides would LOVE to have a partner who carries an equal load in the wedding planning and is willing to make decisions. But most husbands to be either don’t care or just don’t want to. But it needs to get done.
Clearly not all. My ex was going to be one hell of a groomzilla regarding tons of things I really didn’t care about (official drink of our imaginary wedding) and some stuff I really did (the smorgasboard v. passed hor d’eorve debate of 2010… I was on the “passed” side; children at the wedding: he was pro, I was con). And he was the one pushing for the expensive things.
Plus, those people get paid to be over-the-top. It’s fiction. And some of us use our brains all day at work and can use the down time at home.
Nadine November 17, 2011, 7:30 pm
Actually you’ll notice i said “at least” implying, that he should be as much a host as the bride is, but since the article is about brides, i allowed for possible demotion. I said “Its his day too” so really, its obvious I am of the opinion that they are both equal in importance.
I agree reality shows show a terrible side of humanity/femininity. Hwever, ALL reality shows do this. We really cant draw conclusions from them, except that ‘some people act like this’. Not all mothers want their daughters to be baby beuaty queens. Not all men secretly want a harem. Not all celebrities need to go to rehab…. oh god I cant even type anymore because I dont watch any of them. I know there are a million gazillion wedding shows, but I really dont think they are aspirational. They are train wrecks that people watch.
6napkinburger November 17, 2011, 7:19 pm
Yes, the groom was the assistant in the metaphor. But even if I had a little help, I’d still be given way more leeway to be stressed out in the job situation.
And while some brides DREAM of their day in white, others just kind of have to have a wedding with 200 people because that’s what you have to do when you have 75 family members who HAVE to be invited, and your fiance’s family and then the friends you actually want, and its really a lot more to do with your parents than you. If it were actually up to me, I would have a backyard wedding and a grecian dress and be barefoot, but I know that will never happen. In my family, weddings and bar mitzvah’s are family reunions. We don’t need to have real reunions because that’s what those events are for.
So if have to host a wedding-wedding, I’m going to want to make it nice and according to my taste. There’s a lot of things that you just HAVE to do. Like feed people. And give them some sort of protection against the elements. Some people rebel and defy do their own thing and do a wedding for $2000, but it’s not always worth it depending on the familial implications. I just dislike that people think being particular about things and, unrelated, stressed out by the sheer amount of balls you have to keep in the air, makes you a bridezilla. Especially when you’re only throwing yourself a big party because you have to, so you might as well make it good.
bittergaymark November 17, 2011, 7:24 pm
My sister through the wedding to end all weddings. Seriously, it was the classiest I’ve ever been to and that is saying a heck of a lot… She did it with virtually no help, my mom pitched in a bit. But maindly, my sister did it with very little drama and even came in under budget. My sister also had no real experience with planning parties. She just did her research and made it happen. Again, all without even so much as a moment as a Bridezilla.
Nadine November 17, 2011, 7:34 pm
actually, I forgot to add that if its a religious occaision, you get a pass, even though I am not religious in any way, if you need certain things to make you feel married, or to convince people you are really married then by all means those will need organising.
And I do agree with you, 6napkinburger, about the family thing. I have a huge family also, and my ‘side’ of the ‘church’ would be pretty damn full. Luckily, to keep them happy all I’d need is an open bar and a dance floor…..
bittergaymark November 17, 2011, 6:34 pm
It’s all very telling you never hear about Groomzillas. Heck, even the gay weddings I’ve been to have all been decidedly drama free.
katie November 17, 2011, 7:35 pm
hehe- the wedding i just went to last week had a groomzilla.
the bride just wanted to go to vegas- something easy, a package deal, no stress.
the groom, who is my boyfriend’s brother, has a very “traditional family who would freak out if they didnt plan a real wedding” -the words of my boyfriend.
so the whole week the groom was freaking out over last minute details, arguing with his own mother over last minute things like guest books and decorations that she had gone out and bought 2 days before the wedding started… it was nuts. me and the bride just ended up drinking wine at the end of the day… each day…. it was great. lol. the bride called him a groomzilla all week, and the one that i loved the most from her was, “its your ball, cinderella!”
so i guess it does/can happen!
Kate B November 18, 2011, 12:47 pm
I was an attendant at a gay wedding, and I am here to tell you they do exist. Anyone who thinks that gay and straight people are different should have been with me on that day.
katie November 17, 2011, 7:38 pm
i think that all the bridezilla stuff is sad. i think that if people (brides and grooms) would put as much effort and perfection into finding the right person to marry instead of the big wedding there would be a lot less divorces.
when i get married, i plan on doing things the way that i want them, but i also plan on it being low stress. like, yes, i want the tables to look a certain way. and if on that day they dont? ok, fine. that is the kind of wedding i want.
also, and i was thinking about this today actually, i feel really awkward about having the first dance, and the cutting of the cake, and like all those moments where everyone is watching you and taking pictures of you. is that weird? like, i want to invite everyone on the dance floor with me for my first dance. and i dont want a cake at all!
silver_dragon_girl November 18, 2011, 3:34 pm
Not at all, I’m the same way. I hate being the center of attention, unless I’m performing or speaking or teaching, but NEVER in social situations. Makes me so self-conscious. Reason #2 why I am eloping 🙂
Handy November 18, 2011, 7:09 am
I was a bridesmaid 5 (count ’em five) times before I was married. After going through all the drama, not to mention being stuck with 5 dresses that I would never in a million years wear for any other reason (one was lime green chiffon…this was the ’80’s), I was the most laid back bride ever. We set the colors a simple black/white with red as an accent and told the bridesmaids to go buy a dress that they liked and the guys rented tuxes. We concentrated on the religious ceremony aspect of it and had a traditional church wedding. We had a fairly simple but still fun reception at a nice place. Everyone thought it was the greatest because we did hire a disc jockey and he was worth every penny keeping the guests entertained while we ate, wandered around visiting with our guests and dancing the Chicken Dance. That disc jockey was the best money spent in the entire affair. Worth even more than the dress which was quite pretty, I looked great, but sits in a trunk here in the house for whatever reason taking up space. After 14 years, I know doggone well that nobody remembers the dress. The disc jockey, him…we all remember!
We. That I think is the defining word. I was never raised with the idea of a wedding being “THIS IS YOUR DAY AND YOU GET TO HAVE EVERYBODY DO EVERYTHING FOR YOU, YOU, YOU AND IF ANYTHING GOES WRONG YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO FREAK OUT!!!” In our family, weddings are the joining of a man into the woman’s family and the woman into the man’s family and the families and friends are all there to show their love and support. It’s not the “Bride’s Day”. Just not having that expectation was enough to allow me to relax and really enjoy the whole thing.
JK November 18, 2011, 7:28 am
Speaking of bridezillas, today´s Dear Abby was a future bride furious because the groom didn´t want orange to be the wedding colour, shock horror he didn´t even want to wear an orange tie!!!!
I truly can not believe these people!!! And orange???
Kate B November 18, 2011, 12:48 pm
I read that. I wouldn’t either.
evanscr05 November 18, 2011, 9:50 am
You know, I think there is a ‘zilla that people forget about (and EVERYONE is guilty of this at some point) – the Guest-zilla. Brides are under a ton of pressure to put together this event because no matter what you do, someone hates something about it and has no problem telling you. Drama over who gets invited/doesn’t get invited, or they think you spent too much/too little money, don’t like the color scheme, don’t like the location, don’t like the date, don’t like the time of day, don’t like the food, don’t like the music, music is too loud/not loud enough, too formal/informal, hate your dress, hate your bridesmaids dresses, think your centerpieces are too crazy/too boring, you registered for too much/not enough, or you registered for too expensive/not expensive enough items, or your hair should have been down/up, too many/not enough attendants, why wasn’t I an attendant?, flowers are too crazy/too plain, etc. You can see how it can quickly spiral as YOUR wedding suddenly turns into trying to make as many people as happy as possible. You just can’t. Someone will always hate something about your wedding. So, you try to make as much of an event that YOU can be proud of, because, after all, this is an event to celebrate YOUR life changing event. It gets worse when parents pay for it because all of a sudden what you want doesn’t matter because it’s THEIR money (hence why we saved up our pennies and waited 3.5 years to get married so we could avoid that – worked like a charm, btw). The ceremony is completely about the couple, but the reception really needs to have an emphasis on your guests, so you have to consider so many things to make it good for so many people, but still manage to stay within your budget (no matter how big or small) and still be something that YOU enjoy, since, like with the parents, it’s your money and you need to be happy with it. It’s a lot of work, and can be completely draining, but the draining part has NOTHING to do with the actual celebration, it’s all because very quickly this becomes an event about every one BUT the bride and groom. I didn’t fully grasp that til I planned my own.
neuroticbeagle November 18, 2011, 3:25 pm
thought you all might like this article about a non-zilla wedding
LT November 18, 2011, 3:26 pm
Does any couple actually have fun planning a wedding? Because after this year with six weddings and one friendship ended due to a Bridezilla, it seems no. Most couples seem relieved that it’s done. So one could ask why are people doing this to themselves? With the time, money and stress, it seems a little ridic for one day.
Ange September 1, 2015, 12:25 am
Miss Lynn November 18, 2011, 4:04 pm
I was a bridesmaid in my sister’s wedding back in 2007…I still have anxiety about being in anyone’s wedding because of it. She, who normally is a burn-out and all-around mellow, was the bridezilla from hell, telling me and the other bridesmaids that if we didn’t fit into our dresses (which were a hideous lime green) we better get lipo before the wedding. Really?? If she ever happens to have a second wedding down the line count me out!
Angie November 19, 2011, 4:46 am
I absolutely can’t stand that Bridezilla show. I feel sorry for the grooms who are stuck with that. I realize a lot of it is exaggerated for the camera, but it’s kind of a no-win situation because they’re terrible either way–they’re either putting on a show, making a fool of themselves for the fame/money, which is dumb, or they’re actually like that in real life, which is awful.
I’m kinda happy to say that I haven’t been planning my big fancy “dream” wedding since age 3. I don’t like that it’s become all about having the right ‘stuff’, or looking the right way, or seeing how fancy and expensive you can make it. I’m kinda cynical about the materialism of it, but maybe I’m just a “disappointed idealist”. I try to keep in mind that it’s about love, and publicly marking and professing your union before those you love. I realize that once it happens, there will be a lot of details to think about and I’ll probably be just as stressed as the next bride. But I’d like to keep in mind what’s important. And also, I don’t want to spend my life savings on a one-day party. The life together that comes afterwards is going to be a far bigger investment, and it’ll (hopefully) last a lot longer.
Speaking of.. I’ve thought about it, and I don’t think I want my future fiance to spend his life-savings on buying me a wedding ring. The idea of a ring for proposals is kind of a recent invention, and it’s been capitalized on by the diamond industry. Plus, I don’t really think the usual diamond wedding rings are really that great. A lot of them look kinda generic to me, a little circle or square-shaped diamond… meh. I don’t know what I’d like as an alternative, but I just don’t like the idea of, “Ohh *gasp* I love you and I’ll marry you because you spend all your money buying me expensive shiny things and that’s all that’s important!” Of course gifts are nice and they are symbols of feelings towards one another, but I don’t want my future husband to feel obligated to go through the ritual of it. Maybe that’s unusual… anyone else agree?
I’d like my wedding to be nice and special, but that doesn’t mean I have to spend oodles of money on it. I don’t want a cake so realistic and well-designed that it’s too pretty to eat, I don’t want to stress out my bridesmaids and leave them broke and angry, don’t want to ignore my husband/his opinions and treat him like an ‘assistant’, and don’t want to be an all-around selfish wench. I just want to celebrate with the people I love. Is that weird?
Katie November 19, 2011, 6:51 pm
about engagement rings… i heard that this is their coming-to-be story..
so back in the day, women weren’t *supposed* to have sex before marriage. it was very frowned upon. but, apparently, once a man asked a woman to be his wife (in whatever means was acceptable back then) the woman would usually give it up to the guy. so, it was more of no sex before engagement kind of thing. so then, apparently they had a lot of men who started proposing, having the sex they wanted, and then leaving the girl. i guess it created such a problem, that the diamond industry created the engagement ring. they figured that if men had to buy a big expensive ring to ask their woman to be their wife, there would be significantly less will-you-marry-me-thanks-for-the-sex-bye kind of situtations. kind of like, if the woman was making an “investment” of not being a virgin anymore after a proposal, then the men should be investing something into the proposal too.
i dont know how accurate that is, but i thought it was super interesting!
i do agree though- i kind of wish that there was something different, other then an engagement ring to get… and when my boyfriend told me that he planned on like 5,000 for my ring i almost killed him… lol its ridiculous!
Anna November 19, 2011, 2:10 pm
Wow. Anyone who would do #10 does not deserve to get married at all. All I want for Christmas this year is an engagement ring and I have been waiting 8 yrs for it. I really couldn’t care less how much it costs, that’s just silly. I could never see myself doing any of the things on this list. I’m pretty low income and don’t have unrealistic expectations or high standards for basically anything. If I am granted the privilege to become my boyfriend’s wife, I plan on having a very small inexpensive wedding with our families and closest friends. I am thinking summer, outdoors, and have a pig roast for the reception with some tents, homemade side dishes, a keg of beer and some wine/champagne. I’ve seen dresses at the mall in the homecoming/prom section for $50-80 that I would wear as a wedding dress.
Cherlyn September 1, 2015, 6:46 am
I don’t know if anyone else will agree with me or not, but I just want a marriage, not a wedding.
All these little things just seem so small compared to how high divorce rates are nowadays (though dropping), and how many couples don’t actually know how to have a marriage before getting married.
Maybe it’s just me being a little bit more realistic (or pessimistic, however you want to put it) but I would rather just spend all that money on pre-engagement counseling or pre-marital counseling and other things that doesn’t stress us out, doesn’t involve looking your best or even the wedding cake.
Actually I can totally see myself also using that money for a trip around the world with my spouse.
I don’t even really want a ring. I don’t wear rings, they feel icky on my fingers.
I just want to be happy and in a great, supportive marriage. I think that’s reasonable, no?