Does She Have To Be My Bridesmaid? I Was In Her Wedding.

 In Advice

Do you have to have someone in your wedding if you were in theirs? You might be thinking, I was in her wedding. Does she have to be my bridesmaid? This can be such a tricky situation. It’s hard not to feel obligated, but the short answer is NO. Just because someone asked you to be in their wedding does not mean you absolutely have to return the favor. However, there are definitely things to be considered.

Does she have to be my bridesmaid if I was in her wedding?

Will they be hurt if they’re not a bridesmaid?

Would you rather have them in your wedding or lose them as a friend? I’m not saying you will definitely lose them as a friend if you don’t ask, but you might. If you’re willing to accept the possibility that you will no longer be friends with that person – don’t ask them.

If you don’t want to risk losing them, ask yourself some key questions. Were you surprised when you were asked to be in their wedding? Did being in their wedding make you drift apart or become closer? Have they been there for you over the last few years? Make sure you sit down and honestly consider the strength of your friendship.

Are they family?

If they are family (or in-laws) consider asking them even if you aren’t 100% set on it. This person will be around for the rest of your life. Is it worth the possibility of causing “bad blood” within your family? That could cause problems for everyone and the goal is to keep drama to a minimum.

How big is your ideal wedding party?

When your wedding party is 3 bridesmaids or less, it makes sense you might not ask them. If you are having a huge wedding party, not including them will make waves. They are more likely to be hurt that they didn’t make your “top ten list” so to speak. The smaller your wedding party, the easier it is to explain why you didn’t ask them.

Does she have to be my bridesmaid if I was in her wedding?

Do you want them in your wedding party?

Go ahead and ask them if you actually want them in your wedding. Weigh the pros and cons if you are on the fence and try to make the best decision possible. If truly the ONLY reason you are considering asking them is that you were in theirs – just don’t.

Will they be helpful?

If you have other reasons than weigh your options. As mentioned above, that could be because they are family. There are other things to consider based on their personality. For example, if they are very reliable than that might be helpful to you with wedding planning. Being a bridesmaid is an honor but also a duty. Make sure you consider if they will be helpful in this role.

Is there something else they can do?

Another option that is often overlooked is to ask them to do something else important for your wedding. Instead of making someone a groomsman, make them an usher. Instead of making her a bridesmaid, have them direct guests or pass out programs. There are many small tasks that need to be done surrounding a wedding and these are great ways to include someone! (Check out the time this couple made their grandma a Flower Nana!)

The bottom line is it’s totally up to you. If you are ONLY considering asking because you feel obligated to, than that is the wrong reason. Weigh out your pros and cons of having them in the wedding and make your decision. It’s your wedding and you should never feel obligated to do anything you don’t want to do.

What do you think of these tips? Have you had a similar experience? Share with us in the comments.

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Showing 27 comments
  • Jen Morrow

    Never feel pressured to include anyone in your wedding, much less bridal party. Keep it simple and surround yourself with people that make you happy.

    • Reply

      That’s the key is making sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Still, there are things to consider if that person is family or very close to your significant other. I’m like you though, I’d take that drama down a notch. When I got married I had my two sisters and my best friend. I kept it simple.

  • Michelle

    Great post! I touched on this topic in my last post. I think it’s something a lot of brides struggle with and often feel obligated to do. I know it’s so hard to keep everyone happy but at the end of the day, a bride should do what is going to make her the happiest.

    • Reply

      I totally agree Michelle. It’s not being a bridezilla if you envision your day different than someone else. Surround yourself with those that you care about. If you can’t see them as a bridesmaid, find a different role for them if they are special to you.

  • Kelly

    These are great tips. Luckily I had a tiny bridal party and didn’t have to make any big decisions.

  • Amanda

    If you had not said it, I would have. The answer is no.

  • Lauren @ Grace and Granola

    Great thoughts on choosing bridesmaids. It is definitely good to consider it differently if it is family or future family.

  • Ashley

    These are great tips! I had a hard time making a decision on who to include as my bridesmaids. Wish I would have read this post for reassurance that I made the right decision!

  • Kim @ Berly's Kitchen

    I can see how this would be a touchy subject. However, it’s your wedding! You get to decide the details of your wedding and shouldn’t be pressured by a previous event. 🙂

    • Reply

      That is a great way of looking at it! You get to decide all the smaller details so make sure you aren’t pressured when it comes times for the bigger decisions.

  • Stephanie ReadsWell

    It is such a tricky question that almost every woman comes across. However, asking a few questions to ourself (that are mentioned above) will definitely convince the dual mind.

  • Linda

    I like these tips!

    From the other side, I had to decline to be a bridesmaid a few times because of financial reasons. I thought it better they had people who were wholeheartedly there.

  • Susannah

    These are really great points to consider. Finding something else a friend can do is a great solution!

  • Angela Amores

    This is such a tricky one. You gave some really great advice.

  • steph

    This is such a tricky situation, you are spot on with great tips. There can be so much stress around weddings!

    • Reply

      Unfortunately Steph that is true. There are just so many moving pieces when it comes to a wedding. Best to tackle one issue at a time.

  • Brandi Michel

    This is great information and such a sticky situation. But you really cleared things up and I agree that you shouldn’t feel obligated to invite anyone into your wedding party. As the bride – it’s your day!

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