Where do stereotypes come from? Books, films, reality TV shows?
Whatever the source, we seem to be universally familiar with the stereotypically horrible personalities of some mothers-of-the-bride.
Click through the slideshow below to see nine stereotypical mothers-of-the bride -- then tell us if you've ever met a real-life mother who resembled any of these.
The Stage-10 Clinger
You always know where she is: right behind you. This mother-of-the-bride isn't going anywhere except wherever the bride goes. She's always on hand to make sure the bride's needs are met within seconds. She might try to take Dad's spot next to bride as she walks down the aisle; just have a few uncles or brothers on hand to pry her away before that happens.
You've been engaged for three years, and she never missed an opportunity to tell you how wrong she thinks your wedding is. Even on your Big Day, she can't stop telling you about your impending "mistake." You're wondering if she's going to stand up when the officiant says, "Speak now, or forever hold your peace." And if she doesn't, you can be sure the entire family will know her feelings by the end of the night.
The first tears fell when you told her you were engaged. Then again at the engagement party, wedding shower, bachelorette party (awkward!) and rehearsal dinner. But that was nothing compared to the waterworks that starts the morning of your wedding. She's reapplied her makeup at least four times, and you're beginning to wonder if she actually went to the kitchen to get the water you requested, or if she just held the glass under her eyes for a few minutes.
A typical perfectionist, this mother of the bride is constantly fixing your hair, your dress, your centerpieces, and your flowers. She can't rest until everything is perfect, but you're just ready to let it go. She tries recruiting others to help her in her perfectionist quest, but always ends up redoing what they've done because it's not "just right." A sequin is loose on your veil? Better sit down; she's already got the sewing kit out.
The Casual Observer
She's just the opposite of the micro-manager and stage-10 clinger. Some guests even mistake her for an aunt or a cousin, but she doesn't take offense. She's content to sit on the sidelines and watch the action instead of being in the middle of it -- even if it means deserting you! You're just glad she wore the dress you bought her instead of the faded jeans she <em>really</em> wanted to wear.
The Champagne Swimmer
Where's Mom? Check the bar. She's already three sheets to the wind, but still going strong. Mother is starting to make you rethink the open bar cocktail hour before the ceremony. Will she even remember your vows? She's hanging on the shoulder of the closest guest she can find. Just don't let her get too close to your dress -- she already has more bubbly on her blouse than in her glass.
Mom isn't afraid to get out there and net herself a younger man. You have no objections -- just don't do it at the wedding, Mom. But your "I dos" don't stop her. She's rubbing shoulders with groomsmen, including your new hubby's best friend. Not even the freshly-minted 18-year-old brother of your maid of honor isn't off limits to her. She seems determined to meet her next match on your Big Day, and nothing can stand in her way.
The Drama Queen
You told her to keep the gossiping to a minimum, but Mom's favorite family gathering activity just can't be stopped for your wedding. The second she sees her sister, the family's dirty laundry gets hung out to dry. All you can do is hope and pray that the scent of juicy gossip doesn't reach your husband, or his family -- if it does, the show might not go on.
The Spotlight Stealer
No one can look better than you on your wedding day, but she's sure making it difficult. She wants nothing more than to shine just as bright -- or brighter -- than you. When everyone is supposed to be looking at you, she calls all the attention to herself. All she needs is a veil and a bouquet to be the bride, and you'll be left in the dust.