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Bad Friend, Even Worse Bridesmaid

Dear Sugar
I was recently married and have spent the last few weeks putting away my wedding gifts and writing thank you notes. During this process, I have realized who came to our wedding and who has not given us a gift (rude, but expected of certain guests). One of those people happens to be one of my bridesmaids. Please keep in mind that I paid for all the bridesmaid dresses, their manicures/pedicures, hotel rooms, hairstyling for the day, and a bridesmaid gift!

The only thing my bridesmaids had to pay for were their shoes. All the girls reimbursed me months ago, but the bridesmaid that didn't bring a gift has yet to pay me, even though I have asked her nicely several times. To make matters worse, this same girl held up the dress order because she waited until the last minute to get measured, never thanked me for a fabulous birthday party I threw for her, and was the last to arrive to the wedding sight the day of my wedding.

Clearly I need a break from this friend, but how do I get my money back that she owes me for the bridesmaid shoes? I feel she needs to know how terrible she has been acting but I don't want to stoop to her level. Do you have advice? Irritated Izzie

To see DEARSUGAR's answer

Dear Irritated Izzie
You have every right to be irritated at this girl. She sounds incredibly selfish and unsupportive. Technically, you have up to one year to give a wedding gift so you might have to hang tight for a while. Many people have concerns about late wedding gifts; a topic which no one is comfortable talking about. Be glad your bridesmaid isn't your co-worker!

Getting your money back is another issue. Chasing your bridesmaids down and asking them for money is the last thing you should have been worrying about right before your wedding. How annoying. At this point, I would just assume she has no intention of reimbursing you. Take the high road here and chalk it up to bad manners.

If you want to get your feelings off your chest, try writing her a letter or an e-mail. Let her know that she means a lot to you and that's why you asked her to stand up for you on your wedding day. Express your disappointment in her behavior. Tell her how you didn't feel that she was a very caring bridesmaid and that you felt her actions were incredibly selfish.

You never know how your friend was feeling during your happy moment. Could she have been jealous? Could she be acting this way because you were getting all of the attention? Could she be sending the message to you that she doesn't want to be close friends with you any longer?

See how she reacts to your letter. If she's remorseful, then hear her out and give her the benefit of the doubt. If not, re-evaluate your friendship. When is the next time that you are going to want to reach out to such a self-centered person? Maybe distance is exactly what you need from her to gain perspective on the state of your friendship.

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XDeexDeeX XDeexDeeX 9 years
Wow. How annoying is that? I would hate that. I would go to her house unexpected and just ask for the money right then.
gossipqueen gossipqueen 9 years
I think gifts at a wedding are a PLUS not a MUST. It is actually bad manners also to "expect" your "guests" to pay their meal with a gift.... I would just forget about it because there is just no easy way to go asking for your money back without sounding like a penny grabber, self-absorbed b*tch! Two months* after the wedding and you're still chasing the guest for a gift??? CRAZY! If you made clear that they only had to pay for the shoes then your "friend" is definately at fault...was it so expensive that you still need repayment? Obviously if she doesn't know how it makes you feel and she doesn't feel like she owes you anything...you guys are not the good friends you thought. * just using two months as example.
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
Your bridesmaid does sound rude and rather selfish, but frankly so do you. Being a bridesmaid is something you do FOR a friend. You act like you were doing HER a favor when its the other way around. I wonder if you the shoes you picked were reasonably priced or possibly something that she just couldn't pay for...?
sofi sofi 9 years
I think people are overlooking some stuff and only focusing on the fact that there was no gift (yet). I agree the gift shouldn't be the focus- but this bridesmaid is beyond rude. Money issues do not excuse her being ungrateful for a birthday party the bride threw for her, holding up dress orders for something she wasn't paying for, and being tardy to the wedding itself. This would say a lot to me and she would not be my friend any longer. I wouldn't want a gift or money at that point. Just jealous and inconsiderate and I would let someone else know all about it who could pass it on. Just be grateful she didn't do anything more to sabotage the wedding. Sorry, but this is more than just a cheap friend.
ksgirl ksgirl 9 years
I think that some of the comments are getting off the subject- which seems to be that this girl wants to know how to 1) get repaid for the shoes and 2) let her friend know, in a nice way, that her behaviour/attitude hasn't been the best. The fact that she hasn't given a gift seems secondary (but still rude). And yes, I agree that gifts are not the most important part of a wedding by far; however anyone that's had a wedding knows how irritating it is to plan a wonderful event for friends and family and to not even recieve a congratulatory card is a letdown and most of all rude!! I'd say just talk to the friend and find out the root of the problem - maybe she's just feeling jealous or lonley if a lot of her other friends are getting married and engaged and she's not. or maybe...she could just be a truly rude person. lets hope not though.
Regular_Lady Regular_Lady 9 years
Just drop it.
Cortney Cortney 9 years
This is a frustrating situation, but if you want to keep her as a friend, you need to find a way to forgive her and move on. It is frustrating that you spent so much money on her and she didn't reciprocate. I'm guessing this girl was a good friend because she was a bridesmaid. So think about it: is it better to remain frustrated about the situation (when it likely hasn't even crossed her mind) or to move on? If you really feel the need to address the shoe situation, write her a note telling her how much you appreciate her support and thanking her for being a bridesmaid. Add a little P.S. something like "sweetie, I know you are probably super busy right now, but when you get a chance can you write me a check for those shoes soon as possible. We're trying to get everything checked off our list of post-wedding things to do and that would really really help me out." Good luck!
angelbaby2 angelbaby2 9 years
i was in a wedding once where the bride expected people to give her very expensive gifts and was mad when their gift didn;t add up to what she paid for their meal etc. Needless to say, we aren't friends anymore. But I think that you should let the price of the shoes go and say nothing about the gift. See what happens and then write it off if things don't turn around and don't say anything to her. CHalk it up to a lesson learned.
Cranberry Cranberry 9 years
Sounds to me like this girl is just a procrastinator and always running late. If her failure to pay/gift you is the only thing bothering you about the friendship than I think you need to cut her some slack. If you are having other problems in your friendship than I think you should address those things. But it would be too bad if you lost a friend over money matters.
ChiTownEm ChiTownEm 9 years
I agree with TOXIC as well. Gifts are given in good spirit and they should be accepted as such, not expected as repayment for the privilege of attending a wedding. It seems like every wedding I go to, the couple is registered at 3 different stores, and I think it spoils the true spirit of a wedding. I am recently engaged, we are having a destination wedding where we do not expect gifts at all. Since when is a wedding a shopping spree for a new married couple? Last year, we went to 7 WEDDINGS. That is a lot of money spent on gifts. If someone is having a financially trying time, then a wedding gift is an unnecessary stress. And most people hide their financial situations good or bad, so I would give her the benefit of the doubt, write off the shoes as a gift to her and enjoy marriage and the memories of your wedding that actually mean something.
bluejeanie bluejeanie 9 years
i think it's pretty rude not to pay her back for the shoes. a gift is just a gift (how many do you need, honestly?) but if you agreed to pay for everything but the shoes, then i think she's being weird.
L7amiguita L7amiguita 9 years
I couldn't agree with you more t0xxic. What is the point of receiving a gift if you need to force someone to give it to you??? Get over it...she doesn't NEED to give you anything. Just because you gave her something doesn't mean that she needs to get you something back. I think this really reveals your intentions for giving her a gift...you did it so that she would give you something back. Just move on and stop stressing yourself over something as small as a gift...
t0xxic t0xxic 9 years
bfly is right something may be going on that she didnt want to spoil your already hetic wedding planning with. Im just baffled here lately as Ive never had a wedding with all that jazz but arent gifts gifts? Like doesnt it loose its dazzle when you expect to be given? When did wedding gifts become mandatory? -------------------- Happy Halloween Popples
bfly1133 bfly1133 9 years
I think Dear has some good advice, but there is one angle she is missing. There could be a possibility that this bridesmaid is having financial issues. Instead of telling you, she is avoiding you and acting in a way that can be seen as selfish. It would also explain why she didn't get you a gift. There could also be some emotional issues that is causing her to act this way. Point out her actions to her, explain how they have hurt you, and ask why. Be willing to truly listen to her. You know her well enough to know if there is something wrong in her life, or if she is just acting on a poor manner.
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