A Bridezilla is a woman whose behaviour in planning the details of her wedding becomes obsessive or intolerably demanding. It’s not something you want to be accused of becoming! But you do want your big day to be your way. Brides have to tread a fine line between being a monster and a pushover! There are no easy answers but in this post we explore some of the issues.
Where did the Bridezilla label come from?
“Bridezilla” made her first appearance in 1995 with an article by Boston Globe writer Diane White. The term caught on in 2004 thanks to the reality show of the same name. More show in similar vein have followed and plenty of movies have played on the same theme - “Bride Wars,” tells the tale of how Anne Hathaway and Kate Hudson trashed their lifelong friendship when their weddings are accidentally booked on the same day at the same hotel.
Real life Bridezilla stories
There’s no shortage of Bridezilla stories that go viral. Like the bride who asked guests to pay a $1,500 entrance fee and then cancelling both wedding and marriage when they refused. Or the one who told her naturally ginger haired bridesmaid to dye it a colour that was less “attention-grabbing” and more cohesive with the other bridesmaids (but she did offer to pay for the hairdresser).
An especially scary bride sent an email insisting her bridesmaids attend 'weigh-ins', while those skinnier than her had to go on 'protein weight gainer diets'. She also demanded 'strict bedtimes' to avoid 'saggy baggy eyes', and any hair colouring or cutting plans to being submitted to the bride for pre-approval. One bridesmaid dared to get her hair cut without asking permission. She was called a 'bad little bee' and banished from the bridal party.
In fairness to brides
Badly behaved brides are horrifically amusing. But it’s all too easy to label someone a Bridezilla when they are just trying their best to create that special once-in-a-lifetime day of their dreams. And if the charge is levelled at you it’s hard to defend yourself. So, let’s try and get a bit of perspective here – and cut the bride some slack.
The bride is the default wedding planner – most of the responsibilities fall on her shoulders. But let’s remind ourselves that she’s not a professional who does this over and again. This is probably her first time so she’s bound to find it hard. Plus a wedding planner can stand back and avoid getting emotionally involved. It’s impossible for the bride to do that – if she’s not emotionally involved, to the max, she shouldn’t be going ahead with it!
Look at the demands being made on her. She has so much to think about and so many decisions to make – budget, venue, timings, dress, guest list, food and drinks, music and entertainment, bridesmaids dresses, cake, invitations, theme and decorations…it’s never ending! She has a huge group of very different friends and relatives to organise, each with their own particular tastes, opinions, expectations, ego, likes, dislikes and “issues”. Keeping that lot happy, and not upsetting anyone along the way…good luck with that one! Quite apart from looking beautiful on the day and conducting yourself with perfect grace. Finally, while attempting the impossible, you are expected to make the whole thing look easy and effortless. No pressure then!
How best to handle the situation?
There are no quick and simple answers as every wedding, and the situations surrounding it, is completely unique. What we can say, however, is that we’ve now got a whole bunch of blog posts that will help you with your planning, decision making and delegating. Here’s a list, with links, to those you might especially useful – there’s heaps of advice here that should help you get through all the planning, and the big day itself, with the least possible stress.
That’s just a handful of the topics we’ve covered in our various articles - there are lots more! You can also give us a call. We’ve helped so many different brides over the last few years that whatever your question, challenge or worry we can probably offer some help. Just give us a call!