I always say that as wedding planners, we are like therapists as well. There are so many emotions involved in the planning of a wedding that have nothing to do with the color of a napkin or how many tiers your cake should have. I have clients who call me just to grab coffee and talk about everything but the wedding. Oftentimes, they need to vent and bounce things off of a non-biased party, and that's where I come in.
I don't subscribe to the "bridezilla" mentality at all. I hear brides constantly say, "But it's MY day! It's MY day!" Yes, it is your day, but the next day isn't. Your friends and family may deal with you up until your wedding day but the day after, get ready to hand out apologies. Once a bride understands that, she'll be fine. Most of the time they don't and that's where the drama comes in. Unfortunately, aside from the groom, bridesmaids get the brunt of the bridezilla's terror. Here are a few tips that I give bridesmaids dealing with a bridezilla:
1. Try not to take it personally. Understand that there are two types of bridezillas: The one who never got a lot of attention and now her wedding is the perfect excuse to be high-maintenance, and then there's the bride on a budget. There is nothing like a tight budget to bring out the crazy in a bride.
2. Set your boundaries! If you can't afford the $500 dress and the $200 pair of shoes that she picked out on top of the girl's weekend in Vegas, say that! The bridezilla probably won't be considerate of your finances so you'll have to speak up if being in her wedding is causing a financial strain.
3. Don't commiserate with the other bridesmaids about how awful the she is. This will probably be the most challenging thing you'll run into. It is so easy to fall into the trap of talking behind someone's back, especially when they are being a complete nightmare. DO NOT DO IT! Vent to someone who isn't involved in the wedding. Even if it never gets back to the bride, backbiting creates a nasty atmosphere. You can't control the other bridesmaids but you can control your participation.
I had one bridesmaid who emailed me at least once a week to vent. Each email started off with, "Am I crazy or has she lost her mind?!" I'd tell her what I thought and made sure to calm her down. It never got back to the bride and she was able to vent and still be there for her friend.
4. Finally, pick your battles wisely. If she asks you to help her tie ribbons around 300 mini boxes of chocolate, show up with a smile on your face and get busy! Expect to be a little inconvenienced. That is actually the role of a bridesmaid. Now, if she demands that you put them together yourself, that's the time to speak up.
She chose you to be her bridesmaid for a reason. Do whatever you can to maintain the integrity of the friendship and remember that the wedding day is just that, a day.