12 Oct Want to Avoid Becoming a Bridezilla? Keep Reading…!
We can’t help but wonder what legendary anthropologist Sir Edward Evan Evans-Pritchard would say about Bridezillas were he still around today to study this strange species. The iconic University of Oxford professor might have observed them “in the wild” to figure out their strange behaviours, but the term Bridezilla didn’t originate until “Boston Globe” reporter Diane White coined it in a 1995 article, 25 years after Evans-Pritchard died.
Bridezilla first appeared in the Oxford English Dictionary in 2011, but if you’ve ever been around one, you know that no definition is capable of fully describing the wrath of a woman in mid-wedding planning hysteria. No wonder you want to avoid becoming one!
Bridezilla Behaviour 101
Zahra Mulroy, Social Audience Editor for the “Mirror,” made it her business to find the ultimate Bridezilla example and unearthed “Caroline,” who sorely tested her attendants with outrageous demands. Those demands quickly overtook her friend’s time and life.
The straw that broke the camel’s back? This E-mail: “I need some cake-maker suggestions by COB today please, Jase and I really want to get a wriggle on with this and need the contact details, price brackets, flavours and an idea of how prestigious the vendor is – in a table would be great. Excel is probably best please. Thanks!”
It got worse. Caroline spent twice the amount of money she had budgeted on a £5340 Marchesa gown, and had the temerity to ask attendants to make up the £114.33 price difference.
Think the Bridezilla species only runs free in the UK?
“Cosmopolitan” magazine captured quintessential Bridezilla behaviour when editors published a list one bride sent to all guests on her invitation list. She posted rules and regulations so harsh, it’s a wonder anybody showed up for the nuptials by the time they took place.
Here, misspellings and grammatical errors not corrected, were her demands:
- Please arrive 15-30 minutes early.
- Please DO NOT wear white, cream or ivory.
- Please do not wear anything other than a basic bob or ponytail.
- Please do not fave a full face of makeup.
- Do not record during the seramony.
- Do not check in on FB until instructed.
- Use [this link only] when posting all pictures.
- DO NOT TALK TO THE BRIDE AT ALL.
- Everyone will toast with Rémy. No acceptance.
- Lastly must come with gift 75$ or more or you want be admited in.
10 ways to make sure you don’t become a Bridezilla
If you’re nodding your head and vowing not to go down the road the aforementioned two brides travelled, know that these women may have been perfectly sane and rational until they began wedding planning. The stress of wedding planning should never be underestimated, but our tips can help you avoid going off the deep end wearing white or alienating friends and family so much, nobody shows up to your wedding.
1. Learn the art of deep breathing
Things are going to go wrong. We guarantee it. You can’t change that. You can, however, master the art of deep breathing whenever you feel your pulse hitting record numbers and you think you’re about to explode. Understanding up front that things are not going to be perfect could even put your mind at ease once you relax your expectations.
2. Don’t sweat the small stuff
As your temperament begins to slide into a deep dark funk with each glitch that comes your way leading up to your wedding, ask yourself whether or not it matters in the big picture. Learning that the wine you ordered for the reception isn’t available is not a car crash. It’s wine. Your guests won’t care. They’re there to celebrate your big day. And to drink as much of any wine you care to serve.
3. Pay attention to your instincts
The only time women get more uninvited and unsolicited advice about an upcoming event is when they’re pregnant. Opinions about wedding planning are like noses: everyone has one. Don’t be surprised if even the least opinionated friends and family in your circle suddenly start to offer sage advice you didn’t ask for. Thank them graciously. Ignore them–and don’t get hung up when folks recommend emulating someone else’s wedding plans (like a Kardashian). You’re an original and your ideas are smashing. Amen.
4. Avoid extremes on the road to your wedding
During the weeks leading up to your wedding, you may be tempted to push a few limits. You might decide to stop smoking. Put yourself on a radical diet. Stop going to support group meetings or limit the amount of time you spend with the women who enrich your life 24/7. You couldn’t pick a worse time to invite your inner Bridezilla to emerge. Take wedding-free days so you get a healthy break from the stress. Oh, and laugh. Out loud. Frequently.
5. Expect to exceed your budget
We’ve run into very few couples who claim to have stuck to the budget they first set for their grand affair. Like huge projects at work that invariably trigger cost overruns, you’re going to run into circumstances where your choices result in spending more than you had intended. Have a cash backup plan just in case so you get through the planning with your fingernails intact. Yes, you’ll have a few bills awaiting you after the honeymoon. Hopefully, you’ll be too blissed out to mind paying them.
6. Keep reminding yourself why you’re getting hitched
It’s not for your family. It’s not for your friends. And it sure isn’t because society says you must. It’s you and the love of your life preparing to go forward together on an exciting adventure that’s yours alone. Remind yourself that you would love each other as powerfully if there were no 10-tier cakes, a floral budget exceeding the UK’s GNI and the designer dress that killed your clothing budget didn’t exist.
7. Invest in a professional if planning isn’t your strong suit
Of course, hiring a wedding planner is going to cost you, but as the folks at Bolde wrote, “Your official title on the days that lead up to your wedding is bride-to-be, NOT Josephine Stalin.” Hiring a professional wedding planner means you enlist an expert to do the hard stuff and the easy stuff in return for his or her fee. The right wedding planner can morph into a confidant, therapist and unlicensed vicar. We know wedding planners who fill their ‘fridges with wine earmarked exclusively for frenzied couples on the brink of hysteria.
8. Find a way to vent your frustration
As mentioned earlier, things are going to go wrong (count on it) and deep Yoga breathing will only get you so far before your body’s pressure cooker must relieve the steam roiling in your gut. This is when a gym, Yoga classes, running trail—-and especially boxing—-can help return some waning equilibrium and restore some sanity, too. Even your body benefits from this “therapy.” It’s almost impossible to maintain a Bridezilla reputation after an intense hour of aerobics or time spent punching a bag. Up your membership now. Call it the wedding gift you give yourself.
9. Get over silly rivalries
Your fiancé may not like your best friends or his soon-to-be mother-in-law. You may resent the fact that he wants to invite both of his ex-girlfriends to the wedding. Time to declare a truce; one that lasts at least until you two have said your vows and made your honeymoon escape. Make your wedding the day you master the art of forgiveness. Even Meghan Markle forgave her errant father. If she can do it, so can you.
10. Get your head on straight
Must you hire a psychotherapist months before the wedding, so you don’t turn into a grotesque spectacle that will stick with you years after you return from your honeymoon? It couldn’t hurt. Juli, blogging for Psychyourmind, writes, “Brides may feel torn between wanting to appear pleasantly agreeable and wanting to stand up for themselves on important issues, such as budgetary concerns.” But more self-imposed conflict is exactly what you don’t need before your wedding. Think before you act. Ask yourself, “Is this issue really important enough to risk becoming a Bridezilla?”
Prepare yourself for Groomzilla!
It’s important to know that grooms are just as vulnerable as brides when it comes to losing their compasses before the big day.
What? Women aren’t the only gender capable of behaving badly? Are you shocked?
Mulroy’s investigative journalism proves that “Men are just as susceptible to perfectionism and the pressures of planning a wedding” as women. She describes all manner of punch-ups and hissy-fits running the gamut from guys threatening to cancel the wedding if they can’t even agree on a colour scheme for the affair to punching out the photographer for taking “too many photos of the bride.”
Why bring up the fact that becoming a Groomzilla is an equal opportunity state of mind? Because gender roles are being redefined every day. Men feel comfortable hugging pals and crying at chick flicks and women assert themselves as never before, making great social inroads. Vulnerability under pressure can bring out the worst in all of us!
4 Ways to wear white, not red!
There is no shortage of dramatic tips that can help you plan your wedding without turning into a banshee, so we feel the need to conclude this post by sharing emergency tips suggested by therapists if you start to fall off your rails and resemble something out of a Japanese horror film:
- Invest in an app that keeps you calm at any time of the night or day. Turn to it every time you feel your inner Bridezilla trying to hijack your soul, personality and wedding. Keep your mobile at your bedside so it’s always close enough to tap that app.
- Join a women’s support group. You can whine, rage, complain and act out in the company of women who pledge their confidentiality. They won’t care if you turn into a hag as your wedding day approaches. Some of them may confess to having been exactly where you are as their weddings approached. Validation can be as sweet as vintage champagne.
- Get hypnotised. If smokers and fearful flyers can transcend their fears via hypnotherapy, you can do it too and you don’t have to fib about why you’re seeking help. Hypnotherapists deal with all sorts of behaviours, including Bridezillas.
You’ve got lots invested in your big day that transcends money. Make sure the photos and memories you generate are full of good will so nobody describes you as the lizard-skinned reptile primed to generate 1,000 social media hits because you let your Bridezilla loose!