• Resolving Problems

In the Media – Asking a bridesmaid to step down (Glamour.com)

Published: January 13, 2016 | Last Updated: January 19, 2016 By | 4 Replies Continue Reading
Glamour (logo)

Glamour (logo)

Glamour (Screenshot)

Glamour (Screenshot)

It’s pretty tough to ask a bridesmaid to step down but sometimes a bride doesn’t have any choice. It could be that the bridesmaid is sabotaging the wedding efforts, not fulfilling her obligations, and/or making the bride and other bridesmaids feel uncomfortable.

Writing for Glamour, journalist Jillian Kramer deals with the thorny issue of how to actually ask a bridesmaid to step down. She interviewed several experts including The Friendship Doctor.

Before taking this drastic step, she suggests that the bride truly make sure this is something she needs to do. She writes:

It’s likely something was brewing with your would-be bridesmaid long before she joined your wedding party. Says Irene S. Levine, Ph.D., psychologist and professor of psychiatry at the New York University School of Medicine and producer of The Friendship Blog, “My suspicion is that bad feelings arose during the lead-up to the wedding, not before.” So before you dismiss your bridesmaid, Levine suggests, “Do a reality check and speak to someone close to you—perhaps your fiancé or your parent, to make sure you are making a reasonable decision.”

If your confidante agrees you’re acting in your—and your bridesmaid’s—best interest, then proceed. But if your bickering can be solved, Levine says, it’s better to address the real issue. “Asking a friend to step down should only be a last resort,” she explains, “because it is likely to damage or destroy the friendship. Hopefully, you can find ways to get her to change her behavior so that it doesn’t interfere with or undermine your special day.”

You can read the article in its entirety on Glamour and the Huffington Post.

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Comments (4)

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  1. Maddie says:

    Ask yourself if you are a Bridezilla demanding too much time and too much money. Chances are, you are.

  2. Salstarat says:

    The first question you would need to ask yourself BEFORE you make such a drastic step as “sacking” your bridesmaid is this: “How much do I value this friendship?”; “If I NEVER see this ‘friend’ again, will I be devastated?”. If this person is important in your life and, obviously, most brides ONLY ask a person to be their bridesmaid if they are important to them (or through duty, eg your sister, sister-in-law etc). My advice is NOT to go down this road. To ask someone to step down as bridesmaid is extremely hurtful and it would be far better for you to have a quiet talk and ask her if she has had a change of heart about being a bridesmaid (for some reason). This gives HER the opportunity to bow out of obligations if she feels it is too difficult or if she is having other issues. If you “sack” a bridesmaid, the chances of her NOT turning up at your wedding at all is very high as is the REAL chance that you can then “kiss” that friendship goodbye. Asking a friend to step down from being your bridesmaid is like a slap in the face and extremely hurtful. Put yourself in HER place, have a bit of empathy and sincerely ask yourself “How would I feel if I were in the same situation?” ….. Try to iron out problems with this bridesmaid and if there are other issues with the other bridesmaids, go out as a group and try to work through the issues BEFORE they become a major problem. For this reason, it is ALWAYS a good idea to keep the number of bridesmaids down to a MINIMUM – no more than TWO! It just becomes too much of a hassle with three or more.

  3. Amy F says:

    Another option is talking to the bridesmaid. Maybe has things going on in her life and she wants to step down and doesn’t know how. Saying something like, “If you need to back out of bridesmaid duties I understand that your mom’s cancer (or whatever the external stressor) comes first. I don’t want you to feel obligated or add to your stress.”

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