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THE ATTENDANT-FREE WEDDING — BRIDESMAIDS & GROOMSMEN
My fiancé and I are planning our smallish wedding without bridesmaids and groomsmen. We’re in our mid-thirties and have figured out our budget.
We’ve decided that we don’t want attendants. We went to too many weddings where attendants and family members stirred up drama which caused bad vibes.
Here’s our reasoning:
- We’ve both been attendants ourselves so we understand that the cost, especially if you have to travel to a wedding, is a huge commitment, anywhere between $1,000-$2,000 per wedding.
- Friends who thought they were close friends had hurt feelings because they hadn’t been chosen to be in the wedding party.
- On the other hand, we know that it is hard to say no when someone asks you to be their maid-of-honor or best man.
- Does my college roommate, at whose wedding I was a bridesmaid, assume she is one of my bridesmaids?
- Several friends are pregnant, making choosing the bridesmaid’s dresses a nightmare.
- Others have small children that will have to be fed.
We’ve decided that our wedding should be an inclusive wedding of our truly closest family and friends. And where certain guests are not signaled out as more special than others. Everyone will be treated equally.
Quite frankly, I don’t want to have to even invite my best friend from high school and my fiancé doesn’t want to be guilt tripped into inviting all of his first cousins, their spouses and children.
It would be easier not to have attendants but let those who wish to give a reading or be an usher, offer to do so. What do you think?
–AS, Watch Hill, RI
The older you are when marrying, the greater the expectations for the wedding, because you've accumulated more relationships and family members.
Historically, attendants, bridesmaids and groomsmen, were appointed to protect the wedding couple from evil spirits. Practically thinking, you really don't need to have all those attendants!
- Whether you have six attendants each or twelve each, you'll be spending too much energy on keeping everyone happy. For you, it may be better to have none.
- Make everyone happy by sparing your friends the huge commitment of being an attendant.
- You can get yourselves down the aisle without attendants.
- Avoid drama, invite only your best friends.
- Ask yourselves, Are attendants more of a hassle than an honor?
- The current trend: Fifty percent of couples choose not to have large weddings with attendants.