Weddings: a special day for everyone involved. But sometimes, brides become a little too stressed out and make it everyone else’s problem. We call them “Bridezillas”. People share stories of Bridezillas they encountered during the wedding process. Content has been edited for clarity.
Middle School Drama
“When my best friend got engaged, I volunteered to host the bachelorette party. I asked the bride who she wanted to attend, and it was going to be a small get-together; her four bridesmaids (sister, sister-in-law, myself, and my sister) plus a family friend.
I got a fancy Airbnb downtown apartment, and the plan was to have all the girls over, party, and then sleep over. But somewhere along the way, the bride informed me that she did not want her sister-in-law to sleep over. She thought her sister-in-law was weird, and would ruin the party. She wanted her sister-in-law to come over for a little bit, and then leave around 10 p.m. Problem? Everyone knew there will be a sleepover portion, per the bride’s (previous) request.
I suggested to the bride she should be honest with her sister-in-law and tell her since she’s known me and my sister for a long time, she wanted to just have some quality time with us before her big day, especially because I lived out of town. The sister-in-law would understand, right? It might hurt, but it’s always better to be honest with someone. Well, the bride didn’t like that idea. Somehow we keep pushing it off, not sure what to do, and the big day was upon us.
We were all in the apartment playing games, and the mood was a bit stiff and awkward because we were still not sure how to make the sister-in-law leave. My sister and I went into the kitchen to replenish the snacks and the bride followed us in.
The bride hissed, ‘You have to find a way to make her leave!’
So I said, ‘You just need to be honest with her! She’s your future sister-in-law!’
The bride replied, ‘No, I don’t want to hurt her feelings!’
To which I said, ‘Just tell her you to want to have some quality time with your best friend you haven’t seen in forever (me).’
Then the bride said, ‘No, she’ll get mad. Can’t you just say you have a headache or something and we all have to leave?’
Then the bride’s sister and family friend came in and start getting in on it. Everyone knew the situation, but everyone left the sister-in-law in the other room, alone. No doubt she could hear us in here whispering. Keep in mind that we were a bunch of full-grown, adult women in their 20s.
Finally, we devised a plan. I don’t know who came up with this, I hope it wasn’t me. I decided to tell them my husband, currently out with his friends, acted ‘aggressive’, and needed me to pick him up and cared for as soon as possible. Since it was my apartment, I had to bring him back there, and everyone would have to leave. Then everyone but the sister-in-law would come back.
So I had to make it convincing. We went back to the living room and I got a ‘phone call.’ I started crying, and I explained to the girls that this happens frequently, my husband has a ‘problem’, and I’m extremely emotionally distressed. Party’s over.
The worst part was how concerned and caring the sister-in-law was. She suggested going to her house instead, but I reiterated that it’s probably best we wrap things up. I apologized profusely to everyone for ruining everything. Through my tears, I told everyone how terrible I felt. I didn’t want to ruin the party. The bride hugged me and told me it was okay because we had fun. The sister-in-law hugged me and told me how sorry she was, and that it would all be okay. It was all a big show.
Then we all walked out and left together, but all of us girls just circle the block and pull right back in.
I’m not sure if the sister-in-law ever caught on. I think that experience was very telling as to the true character of the bride, who was once my best friend. Someone who is constantly so worried about how others perceive her, she’d rather rather ‘save face’ than be honest. Although I miss her, experiences like this serve as a reminder of why it’s best I cut things off.”
Lover Of Surprises
“My two college roommates and I were close friends, very close. We shared an apartment, shared meals, and did a lot of fun things together.
When one of them, ‘ABC’ got engaged, she consulted the other roommate, ‘XYZ’ and me extensively; to the minute details. She used to always say that when she got married the two of us would be her bridesmaids. She made her dress and planned on bewedding at her Godparent’s house. For bridesmaid’s dresses, she consulted both of us on two alternate colors, we gave her our thoughts on both and left up to her the final selection. Then, she said she had a surprise for us, and wanted to show us her appreciation for all our help. Since she was a good seamstress and has sown a few items for the two of us, we were under the impression that she was going to make our dresses as well. She also said her final choice of color would be our surprise. Not so.
Things moved forward. We were all excited. She kept the two of us extensively involved and kept us informed of every hiccup and burp. We greatly anticipated her big day.
Strangely enough, we never met her fiancé. She thought us meeting him at the wedding could be a surprise or at least one of the surprises.
Then, the bridal shower was announced at her Godparent’s house. Since her sister was going to be the Maid of Honor, she was handling all the details. Of course, XYZ and I offered our help, but she said everything was under control. We received the invitation for the shower and her choices of items for her new home and new life. We splurged. Only the best for our dear friend.
At that point, XYZ and I wondered why we hadn’t yet received the wedding invitation as well as details of the program like the rehearsal, etcetera. But we didn’t worry much.
At the shower, things went smoothly. We all had a wonderful time. She and her Godmother showed us the venue of the wedding ceremony and all the anticipated details, but nothing included us.
XYZ and I were super confused.
As she and I were about to leave, ABC’s cousin whom we had just met for the first time, walked up to us, and excitedly said, ‘See you at the wedding.’
‘No, you won’t.’ XYZ said, as she lead me to the door, and added, ‘We are not invited!’
What? She overheard the bride telling her Godmother she didn’t want anyone better looking than her at the wedding. As her two close friends and confidants, we were dropped without a word.
After the initial shock has worn out, XYZ and I laughed all the way as we drove back together. We never saw ABC again or heard from her except for a generic ‘thank you’ note that we got for the shower gifts.
Sadly, her marriage fell apart after a couple of years.
I don’t think that was the ‘surprise’ she had promised us. But neither XYZ nor I had the slightest clue why she just didn’t come out and say that she was keeping it a small wedding and only family was invited. We would have been fine with that.
Naturally, XYZ and I did not feel any obligation to send her the wedding gift. She and I are still friends. Recently, we both tried to reach ABC but didn’t hear from her. A few intervening decades are long enough to let go. However, recalling the great wedding that we didn’t attend, XYZ and I still laugh and often wonder what ‘truly transpired’ that got the two of us dropped from the bridal party, not invited to the wedding, and all without a word from the bride; our onetime best friend.
I guess we will never know.”
Hair Color Rules
“Full disclosure, I was a little bit petty here. I still absolutely love the bride, and I hope this didn’t upset her too much, and from what I’ve heard it (thankfully) did not! I’ll leave it up to y’all to judge if I went overboard in this situation:
The only time I’d been involved in a wedding before was as a flower girl when I was younger, so when my sister-in-law asked me to be a bridesmaid at her and my brother’s wedding I was super excited. I had dyed hair at the time.
My hair was a coppery-orange color and I loved it. The shade took a lot of work to get to, as I had to bleach it down from a box dyed black which is notoriously difficult to get rid of. I loved my new look and only had it for maybe a month or two before she asked me to be a bridesmaid. I honestly never thought my hair would be a problem. It wasn’t neon pink or anything and it genuinely never occurred to me that the bride would hate it since she knew what it looked like before asking me.
Well, at one of the bridesmaid meetings she brought it up in front of everyone by saying something along the lines of, ‘And of course, ____ will need to dye her hair,’ and then continued to a different subject.
I was really shy back then, so I didn’t feel comfortable saying anything in front of everyone but brought it up to my sister-in-law later. She told me my hair was just too bright and attention-grabbing. She also said that all eyes should be on the bride and that she wanted me to change it back to something darker like it was before I bleached it. I honestly went home and cried.
Even my boyfriend (now husband) thought the request was a bit much since it would involve damaging my hair, especially so soon after bleaching it, which was already pretty rough on my hair. Here is where the pettiness came in. I did dye my hair. And it was dark, just as requested. Not black though, not dark brown, but dark purple. I knew I didn’t want to go back to black so soon after finally getting rid of it, and I wanted a fun color (hence the orange). So I did technically comply with the bride’s specifications, I mean, the new color certainly was darker.
I guess my thought process was this: I was too much of a wimp to outright defy the bride, but not quite enough of a wimp to just roll over. So I thought of the dark purple as a sort of compromise, I guess? I technically followed instructions, but still dyed my hair a color I liked. My sister-in-law never actually said anything about the change and didn’t seem too mad which was a huge relief. She was a bridesmaid of mine a few years later. I do have to admit, I somewhat considered turning the tables on her when it was my turn to be the bride, but just didn’t have it in me, even as a joke.”
“She Handed Me A Ratty Stuffed Animal”
“I have recently dealt with a bridezilla. She was marrying my husband’s cousin and my husband was performing the ceremony. Of importance, I have a nice camera and take lots of pictures, but I am not a professional and don’t have indoor lighting. Also, we are decidedly not morning people and on weekends don’t get up before noon if we don’t have to.
First, she demanded I do first look photos for her inside even though I was not the photographer they hired. I said I thought that might be breaking her contract with the professional and managed to wiggle out but she was very annoyed though the professional photographer did a great job.
Then she started texting at eight in the morning, demanding we get to the ceremony site an hour earlier than we agreed at rehearsal the night before. So my husband and I rearranged things so we could arrive an hour earlier. One of the cousins arrived a few minutes later. She and the girls arrived 15 minutes later than the original time.
Next, I was the gopher making sure various people arrived and received their props. That wasn’t so bad.
Then she handed me a ratty stuffed animal and told me I needed to carry him everywhere so he had a good view of the day. That just felt weird. Luckily most everyone knew it was hers, not mine so it was a little less awkward walking around the country club in a dress with a ratty stuffed animal.
She tried to convince me to video the whole thing on a cell phone. I managed to wiggle out of that way more easily because the pro heard the request and went and fetched his video equipment from the car.
Then she freaked out on me because I left the stuffed animal alone at the reception table while I went to the bathroom and demanded him back a request I was more than willing to accede to.
When the night was over, it exhausted me. I planned to sleep until noon the next day (Sunday) before getting up and helping my husband pack for a week-long business trip that started Monday. I also planned to pack for a week-long trip for myself to visit my mom while he went on his trip. That did not happen because starting at eight in the morning on Sunday, the bride texted me wanting the pictures from the wedding. I told her to give me a week.
The demanding behavior continued after the wedding. I told her no and she ignored me. I made a clear statement that was unacceptable. She thought I was then a horrible evil person and she has refused to speak to either my husband or me since and has avoided family holidays if there was a chance we might be there.”
“I had a former friend ask me to be at her wedding during a time when I was not financially stable. I thought she understood this because I had told her about it several times, and early on had told me she would be sure to pick a bridesmaid dress I could afford, like under 100 bucks. Okay, cool, I went ahead and told her I would do it since I thought she understood that I would only be able to do it at a certain budget.
Now before she picked the dresses out, I moved across the state we live to a place with a lower cost of living. However, the job I took was very demanding of my time and I didn’t have very many days off if I got to have days off at all. When she picked out the bridesmaid dresses, she called me up and told me I needed to go get mine from the nearest David’s Bridal, and what day I needed to have it by.
The problem with this was that the nearest one was an hour and a half away, I had no days off before that date to even go attempt to pick it up, as this was also shortly after I started this job. I was in the ‘probation’ period, so I didn’t have any time to take off. When I asked how much it was so I knew for sure that it was very much beyond what I could afford, even being more financially stable than I had been when this all began.
I tried to ask her if there was something else I could do, like go to a closer store to find one that looked similar for a cheaper cost, but she adamantly refused to let me grab something that wasn’t exact. Then, at the same time, told me I would have to pay for the, rather expensive, makeup artist and a hair stylist that would be coming in to get everyone ready. She also told me I had to grow out my hair long enough for a specific hairstyle, which I don’t think I ever got to since my hair grows slowly. Since I worked in a factory and didn’t pay as much rent then, I could most certainly afford it.
It would’ve ended up being over 450 bucks for everything, which, yes, was still far more than I could afford to throw at something that wasn’t rent. We bickered a bit back and forth about it, and in the end, she took me out of her wedding. It worked out since HR at the factory I worked at decided to rescind the approval for that day off I requested when they hired me (this was not a good place to work), so I wasn’t able to even go anyway. We haven’t spoken since, and this was several years ago.”
“None of us lived in the same state as the bride. She insisted that we had to order our dresses from the shop in her area. The dress needed to be a synthetic material in a light, neutral color. The bridezilla was convinced there might be a difference in dye lot.
One bridesmaid’s measurements weren’t accurate, as she took them herself and sent them to the bridezilla. The dress was too small. The bridezilla had to order another. An issue that would have had low risk if the bridesmaid was able to get measured and purchased at a local bridal shop. Another dress had proper measurements provided.
The issue was the bridal shop failed to guarantee or provide customer service/exchange for a dress marked a size. But when the dress was measured it was almost two sizes smaller. Another instance where if the dress was purchased from a local bridal shop, then the bridesmaid could have dealt with the shop owner and insisted upon being provided with a dress with the proper measurements to match the size ordered.
The bridezilla demanded that we ship the shoes to her and pay for a cobbler, so she chose to dye the shoes. She shipped the shoes back to us, so add time to pack and ship and parcel postage to and from.
She could have picked up the shoes and kept them for us. It would have saved us postage.
Brides to be – take note and realize that if you have expectations regarding dresses, shoes, etcetera, then take the risk into your own hands and pay for dresses and shoes.”
Ignoring The Matron Of Honor
“In the early 1990s, my sister asked her to be her matron of honor. I know she intended for that request to be an honor. So of course I graciously accepted. At that time, I had a fairly bad case of chronic bacne, which makes for an unattractive back. So I asked her to please choose a dress for me that didn’t expose my back.
What did she choose? Dresses for all of the bridesmaids (including mine) that had a scooped back. This shocked me. I mean, did she want a bad case of bacne walking down the aisle for her wedding? I don’t know what she was thinking, or not thinking.
So I decided to get a grip, as I realized things like this can be blown out of proportion. It’s better to laugh at it later, in the distant future. Though, truthfully, almost 30 years later, I’m still kinda resentful about it. It turned out I had an especially big zit on my back the day of the wedding, and I got my sister’s soon-to-be mother-in-law to pile some makeup on it. Not sure it helped, and it may have made it look and get worse.
Thank goodness no one I cared about seeing me like that (for instance my personal friends, coworkers, etc) were at the wedding. My mom passed away, and my dad could deal, as I told him I didn’t choose my dress. I was a little embarrassed about certain cousins, etc. but just tried to laugh it off to myself. They were from the small town we all grew up in, and I believe they knew that the bride selected the bridesmaids’ dresses. And I spread the word, starting with a cousin I had grown up with. I told her I had tried my best to circumvent this problem, to no avail. I think she passed that along.”
“I wasn’t the bridesmaid in this instance but ended up quite literally cleaning up the mess caused by an unreasonable demand on one.
As my partner (now husband) and I were milling around waiting for a taxi at the end of a wedding for some old family friends of his, we spotted one of the bridesmaids left in the venue packing up. He went to give her a hand stacking some chairs, made some small talk, and then came back over to me frowning. This bridesmaid had previously mentioned to the bride that she could stay back and help clean up after the wedding, and the couple decided that meant it was reasonable to have her do it all herself.
Did I mention that the reception venue (a sporting club) said in their contract the whole place needed to be emptied and cleaned the same night so they could re-open for patrons the next morning, or the couple loses their deposit?
And did I mention that this was not a small wedding and there was a mess everywhere?
We ended up staying to help and between the three of us, it still took two hours. It was about three in the morning when we got home. At least we made a friend that we still stay in touch with occasionally out of it. I still haven’t fully forgiven the bride and groom ten years later. All they needed to do was pre-organize a clean-up crew of some close family and it would have been done in under 30 minutes.”
“A former friend expected her ‘staff’ to do everything. She was trying to cut corners with cost by having a complete do-it-yourself wedding. Right down to the food and everything. It was, as she put it, our gift to her to pay for the groceries for the food dishes assigned to feed 100 plus people.
She expected us to spend our own money to create our artificial flower bouquets and all the decorations for the reception hall. She even wanted us to create gift baskets that her guests could bid on to win to help pay for the honeymoon. This girl even wanted to have an auction for people to buy the decorations and such.
She even assigned us what we were to buy her for gifts. I found the item she ‘requested’ at a different store for a much cheaper price. She had the nerve to demand the difference, in cash.
This girl was so annoying. Supposedly at the last minute (the morning of the wedding), she decided they weren’t going to have a wedding party. I say because the programs which had already been printed by one of her other bridesmaids were ‘lost’ and replaced without the bridal party on them. We were already at the venue when we arrived.
I swear some brides watch Bridezillas as a guide of how they’re supposed to act or something.”
Too Tan For Her Wedding
“I don’t know if this is the most unreasonable, but this was a pretty ridiculous demand.
I was living in Belize teaching school, and I went right after university for several years. While I was there, my closest friend was getting married. She wanted me at her wedding. So, I bought the ticket to go back to the United States for spring break.
I got there on time, my dress fit, and all was well. On the morning of the wedding, we all got our dresses on and went to help the bride. She wanted to see how we looked so she had us all line-up. Her one complaint was that I was tanner than the other women. She asked if I could ‘do something about that.’
I had no idea how to please her. Of course, I was tan. I wore 30 SPF every day but I lived in the jungle. Some tan got through the SPF.
So, I had to remain tan, over which she huffed and rolled her eyes repeatedly. The other bridesmaids were also mad about it on the bride’s behalf. It was a great time.
We are still friends now and I have never reminded her of her ridiculous request.”