It’s so exciting to be asked to be a bridesmaid, but this important role in the wedding comes with a lot of responsibility. There are some things that should never, ever be said to a bridesmaid - here are just a few that are guaranteed to strike stress, fury and fear into the heart of every bridesmaid ever. You’ve been warned…
It doesn't matter who is asking these questions, whether it's a mutual friend, a nosy aunt at the wedding or the bride herself, here are the most common annoying things people think it's okay to say to a bridesmaid - oh, and we've included some optional stock answers to have stashed away just in case you need them. You're welcome!
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15 Things You Should Never Say to a Bridesmaid
1. Oh, Are You Not the Maid of Honour?
What do you hope to achieve from asking this question, honestly? If she was the maid of honour, she would have TOLD you that. Being a bridesmaid is a full-on honour by itself - and you get all the fun of being in the wedding party without the added responsibilities that are part of the maid of honour role, so actually it’s win-win (sorry, maids of honour, but it’s true…).
Stock answer: ‘No, I’m not... are you?’
2. Always the Bridesmaid, Never the Bride…
Just shut up, okay. This incredibly dated idiom refers to an ancient superstition that it was unlucky to be a bridesmaid more than twice. But people also didn’t used to trust medicine and thought that black cats brought bad luck - we’ve got past that, so let’s get past this.
She might be perfectly happy not being a bride - to be honest, planning as a bridesmaid can sometimes be enough to put you off taking one of the main roles - in which case it’s a pointless and slightly mean-spirited thing to say, or she might be desperately hoping to get married, which makes it quite hurtful.
Stock answer: ‘Sorry, are you from 1871? I’ll answer once I’ve finished churning this butter.’
READ MORE: The Most Stylish Hen Party Decorations
3. You Going to Hook Up with a Groomsman?
Those rom-coms where the bridesmaid and the best man inevitably end up falling in love have a lot to answer for. How well do you know the bridesmaid? What if she’d prefer a fellow bridesmaid, have you considered that? Or if she doesn’t see celebrating her friend’s wedding as an opportunity to pull because that’s not her primary goal here? Don’t lean into boring old stereotypes and don’t make it weird.
Stock answer: ‘Why on earth would you ask that?!’
4. Be Honest, is [BRIDE] Being a Total Bridezilla?
You’re asking the bridesmaid to be mean about her friend, and you’re helping to perpetuate the harmful stereotype that a person who knows exactly how the event they’re spending huge amounts of time and money planning should be.
If you’re worried that your friend is feeling stressed as she helps someone plan their wedding, phrase it differently and offer advice and support!
Stock answer: ‘She’s dealing with planning such an awesome day for everyone to enjoy. That’s a lot of pressure.’
5. You Need to Pay for Your Dress / Makeup / Hair in This Style
This is something that the couple getting married shouldn’t say to anyone in their wedding party. If you invite someone to participate in your wedding, you should provide them with the things they need to do that role - whether it’s a dress, a suit, whatever you require them to have.
If you can’t afford to do that, but still want their participation, you can ask them to fund their share but make it clear it’s optional, and you have to let them take the lead on what they choose, if you want them to foot the bill.
Stock answer: ‘If I’m helping to pay for this, I’d like to have a say in what I wear.’
6. You Can Wear the Dress Again!
Especially if you’re saying that in connection with trying to persuade them to fork out for a dress you’ve chosen. Be honest - do you know ANYONE who has worn a bridesmaid dress again?
Stock answer: ‘Maybe, which is why I’d like some input into what it looks like.’
7. It’s Not Really About You
It’s fair to say that on the wedding day, the couple will be the centre of attention. But that doesn’t mean eyes won’t be on the bridesmaids too! The wedding party is at the heart of wedding planning - they help with so much and they add so much to the experience. It is also about them, albeit not on such a large scale.
Stock answer: ‘As a key part of the wedding entourage, it is a bit.’
READ MORE: 19 Rules All Wedding Guests Need to Follow
8. Don’t Worry, It’ll Be You Next!
This is patronising and it implies that the bridesmaid is spending their time worrying that they’re not getting married. Would it occur to you to say this to a groomsman? We didn’t think so. And that’s actually a great stock answer if anyone does say that to you.
Stock answer: ‘Have you shared that pearl of wisdom with the groomsmen yet?’
9. When Are You Getting Married?!
Oh, this is a loaded question. It’s very personal - you don’t know what conversations are happening behind closed doors, and if the bridesmaid isn’t talking about her wedding plans, then don’t ask a question that can be awkward to answer.
If you’re genuinely interested, try ‘Do you want to get married one day?’
Stock answer: ‘Oh, go and ask my partner’ (This is even more sassy if you don’t have a partner…)
10. Don’t Worry About the Hen Do, I’ve Got It
One of the most fun (and sort of most stressful, but it doesn’t have to be!) parts of being in a wedding party is getting to have a hand in planning the pre-wedding parties. You need to make sure that it’s done in a way that the bride or groom will love, but also let all the bridesmaids be involved if they want to be!
Collaborate and work on something really fun - if there are lots of people in the wedding party, by delegating and splitting it all out, you’ll have way less stress and you’ll make sure it’s as relevant to the bride or groom as possible, as all of you will know them in your own way.
Stock answer: ‘I would like to be involved actually, is there a game or something I can plan?’
11. Are You Going to Do a Viral Speech?
One bridesmaid goes viral ONE time for rapping her speech and now everyone expects this. If you know she is giving a speech, don’t heap on some more pressure!
Stock answer: ‘Actually I’m planning a really dull speech.’
12. I Had No Idea You Were So Close
This can be read as ‘I’m surprised you were chosen as a bridesmaid’, and that’s quite a rude thing to say, isn’t it…
Stock answer: ‘So funny! I was thinking the same thing.’
13. What I Think Is…
If this relates to hen party planning - pause. Coordinating lots of people and planning a series of fun activities is a lot of work. Once it’s been done, don’t then share your unhelpful thoughts or opinions. Go with it, and be glad of the time and effort she’s put into it.
If it relates to wedding opinions the bride has no control over - pause. What are any of you going to gain from that, except for putting the BM in an awkward position?
Stock answer: ‘Thanks so much, that’s definitely something to consider. However I’ve chosen X because of Y.’
14. What Are You Going to Do About Your Tattoo / Piercing / Hair Colour?
She’s been asked to be a bridesmaid because of who she is. That tattoo/piercing/hair colour is part of that. Accept it.
Stock answer: ‘Why should I do anything about it, what are you implying?’ *hard stare*.
15. You’re Making a Big Deal About This
There are quite a lot of things about being a bridesmaid that are a pretty big deal. Dressing up in something you might not have had 100% say in, walking down an aisle in front of lots of people, planning an awesome hen do or bridal shower, and being the bride’s support and sounding board, just to name a few. You’re allowed to make a big deal about it.
Stock answer: ‘It is a big deal!’ (raised voice optional…)
Being a bridesmaid is an absolute blast - getting to see the day you’ve helped to plan happen is a wonderful thing, as is having the chance to unabashedly celebrate one of your besties finding true love. Make the most of it, and stand your ground!
If you're being a bridesmaid to an absolute saint of a bride, make sure you check out these gorgeous gifts for a bride-to-be to treat her to something really special.