How Do I Confront The Bridesmaid Who Is Slacking?

She's seriously dropping the ball

Q: 

So my wedding is in a week and a half, and my bachelorette party is in four days. My little sister is my maid of honor, and my BFF is one of my bridesmaids. My sister was always going to be my MOH, but she lives in another state and is going to school, so she’s been trying to plan a bachelorette party for me from afar. The added complication is she turned twenty-one less than a month ago, so she’s needed to rely heavily on my local, mid-twenties bridesmaids to help with the planning for the party that is happening in the nearest big city to us. She’s the only bridesmaid who isn’t currently local, but planning the party was a MOH duty she wanted to fulfill.

My BFF and another bridesmaid teamed up to throw my shower, which turned out lovely, but I found out later that my BFF really dropped the ball on the duties she agreed to. She would offer to take on X tasks, but then not do them, or do a half-assed job so my other bridesmaid had to pick up the slack. A different time, she asked if she could help with one of my DIY crafts, but came over and laid on the couch for most of it. Now, four days before our weekend in the city, I hear from my sister that my BFF hasn’t made any of the reservations for food and drink establishments that she said she was going to. Planning for this party began months ago, and my BFF had opinions about letting my sister do it all because of her distance and the age difference, so she offered to find a restaurant and bars for us. Despite frequent checking-in coming from my sister in the time that’s passed, it’s go-time, and BFF hasn’t actually done anything.

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My BFF has a job that demands a lot physically and she has to go out of town regularly, but she gets weekends off and in the last few months she’s had plenty of down time to get things done. It would be so different if in the beginning she’d just asked not to be part of the planning of the shower or bachelorette because she’s busy; all of us could easily respect that! But she’s made promises she hasn’t kept, then always uses her work as an excuse, and I’m feeling some strong big-sister-protective-feelings when my sis calls me and says my BFF won’t return her texts.

How do I confront my BFF about being a shitty bridesmaid without sounding like I’m being selfish about parties being thrown for me, or stirring up yucky feelings right before the big day?

—Anonymous

A:  You don’t. This isn’t your problem.

I know it feeeels like your problem because it feels like she’s your friend, and she’s your sister, and you thrust them together in these roles. But you, personally, are not responsible for how these women behave. If your sister is finding your friend to be unreliable (first of all, welcome to bridal parties), it’s up to her to either call her out, or more likely, just stop relying on her.

Honestly, your sister shouldn’t be looping you in on this at all. I don’t fault her; maid of honor is a big responsibility when you’re young and all that. But this is all a part of the frustrating process of being maid of honor. She’s just spreading that frustration to you, which isn’t necessary and sort of goes against the whole point, here. To whatever degree possible, the bridal party should be the couple’s stress-Shamwow, absorbing any irritating stresses that are headed your way. Your sister isn’t doing that; she’s just adding to your stress by spreading hers around.

This is irritating, but it isn’t your problem. Let them work it out.

—Liz Moorhead

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