Here's the original post:
So I’m getting married soon (28 F), and one of the most exciting parts of the wedding for me are the bridesmaids and the dresses. I don’t consider myself to be a bridezilla, but on my special day, I want everything to be as perfect and coordinated as it could possibly be.
So about a week ago I decided to invite my bridesmaids over so we could discuss dresses and stuff. Let’s call the bridesmaid I had the issue with “Joy.”
Before they came over I already had a nice dress in mind. The dress was burgundy, form fitting, cut a little above the knees, and had one shoulder strap. I thought it was gorgeous and very feminine for women our age, but Joy and a couple of other girls weren’t exactly comfortable (mostly because it was form fitting) so I let it slide.
I really wanted a dress that all of the bridesmaids would love and feel comfortable in, but they had to be the same. So the next dress was still burgundy, but it touched the floor (no slit) and it had spaghetti straps. Everybody loved the dress except for Joy, who claimed that she didn’t want to wear the dress because she’s insecure about her shoulders. Fair enough.
At this point I knew that Joy was going to be difficult to work with, but I kept going because again, I wanted to be accommodating. I think we went through 5 or 6 more dresses before the last one. (The dresses that I showed the bridesmaids were modest IMO and little things were what made Joy not want to wear them). The complaints she had were always something small like “I don’t like how the dress shows the shoes, then my toes would be out” or “my hair isn’t long enough to compliment those sleeves” (yes, I’m 100% serious).
So the last dress I showed them was a floor length burgundy dress, loose, had beautiful long sleeves, and the only thing that was keeping it from not being a burgundy maxi dress with long sleeves was the fact that there was a slit that came up to below the knee. It honestly was one of my least favorite dresses out of the ones I chose, but I wanted to try to be accommodating. Again, everyone seemed to agree with the dress except for Joy, who claimed that the slit was a little too provocative for her taste.
After this, I was a little frustrated, so I just said we’d try looking at dresses again another time. While the girls were leaving, I pulled Joy aside and explained that I don’t think she’d be a good fit for my bridal party because this aspect of the wedding meant a lot to me and her demands were too “nitpicky” to be a part of the group, but I still wanted her to be at the wedding. She got upset and said that I was excluding her because of her insecurities. I said that I already tried to accommodate her by showing many different styled dresses, but she didn’t want to hear it, and left. So, am I TA?
• I am paying for the dresses
• I wanted matching dresses because I’ve seen pictures and videos of weddings where the bridesmaids wore matching dresses and I fell in love with the look.
• I wanted an unanimous vote instead of “majority rules” because this is how I looked at it. Say all of the bridesmaids loved this dress but 2 of them didn’t, and I picked the dress anyways. I would feel bad if 2 of my bridesmaids felt uncomfortable the whole night because they were “overpowered” by the others.
• Joy is one of my friends from college. Yes we’re not the closest like best friends closest, but I still appreciate her, which is why I asked her to be a part of the bridal party.
NTA you're not being a "bridezilla" here you did your best and now are free to move on
OP confirms she's paying for the bridesmaids' dresses, NTA.
I was a bridesmaid and the dresses my cousin picked for us were strapless. I’m the same as Joy, I hate baring my shoulders because they’re kind of wide and lots of acne scarring from puberty. And she wanted our hair up so no covering the shoulders with my hair. (Also it was a January wedding and she wanted all the bridal pics outside.)
Know what I did? I wore the damn dress. Because the day wasn’t about me and I really didn’t need to look a certain way for anyone but the bride. I totally get feeling majorly insecure but I understood it was my job to be a bridesmaid for my cousin, it was one day, and pictures can be edited.
You gave her a lot of choices, sacrificing YOUR preferences to help everyone feel comfortable, and she still made it about her. You even wanted her to still come to the wedding (and she could wear whatever she wants then.) If she has so many insecurities about her body she should have had the foresight to not agree to be a bridesmaid, because ultimately it’s up to you what you’d like them to wear. NTA.
And newnerdoncampus said:
I guess I'm the minority but YTA. I'm a bride right now, and I guess I will never understand forcing your closest loved ones into clothes they don't feel happy or comfortable in--even if you're paying. Happiness and confidence makes people beautiful, and I'd rather my bridesmaids radiate "Joy" than be forced into a specific vision that won't matter after the day of
So I had an overwhelming response to my post about asking if I was TA for kicking a girl out of my bridal party for being sensitive about dresses, and I got a lot of NTA/ESH, and I could see both sides, understood that I could have handled it better, and I was glad to see that a lot of people also believed that Joy was being “a lot to handle”.
Anyways, I decided to take your advice, and here’s an update on the situation, for anyone that’s interested! So after reading a ton of your comments, I decided to call Joy and invite her over to talk.
Luckily, she said yes (by the way, before this, she didn’t say she didn’t want to be at my wedding, so she was still planning on becoming a guest), and I apologized for kicking her out with no warning, but I laid out my frustrations.
She apologized for being really picky about the dress and realized that the attention wasn’t going to be on her and it wasn’t her day, so it wasn’t really appropriate for her to get upset over fine details on a dress. She also revealed to me that this was going to be her first time being a bridesmaid (she doesn’t usually wear dresses, she’s more of a leggings and sweatshirt type of girl).
I took some of your guys’ advice again and asked Joy to show me a couple of dresses online she would be comfortable with (didn’t matter what color, I just wanted to see her style), and she searched for about 10 minutes and couldn’t find one that she “loved”.
She kind of looked bummed and a little apologetic, so I came up with a plan. The official dress shopping day for the bridesmaids was the next day, and I invited Joy to go with us, to get a feel for the dresses, to see if she would be comfortable. She agreed.
So the next day, my girls and I met up at a dress place, tried on a couple of dresses, and Joy didn’t really like them, even though my other bridesmaids did. Finally, we tried on the 4th dress, which was THE one. The girls fell in LOVE with it, and I looked at joy and she was staring at herself in the mirror, but she had a smile on her face! :)
I came up to her and told her again I didn’t mind if she wore a shawl or cover up for some moments, and she nodded and smiled again. Actually one of my bridesmaids (who didn’t really know about the situation) came up to joy and told her how gorgeous she looked in the dress. I’m not gonna lie, I shed a couple of tears because they all looked so beautiful.
So we found a dress that was matching and all the girls were happy with, and Joy is back in the bridal party. Hope that this was a happy ending that everyone enjoyed :) Now for me, I have to go to plan other parts of the wedding with my fiancé:)
Edit: I couldn’t find the actual dress, but I did find something very similar online