It's wedding season again and that means more conflicts between brides and bridesmaids.
A Reddit posting about just such a conflict recently made waves on the platform, as a bride-to-be took her tomboy maid of honor to task for not wanting to wear a dress. And it left many of her fellow Redditors scratching their heads, while others gave her quite an earful.
The story, from a Redditor who goes by the username potentiala**hole3222, was posted to the AITA (Am I The A**hole) subReddit, a place where people can take their conflicts to a panel of fellow Redditors, who apportion blame based on one of the following categories.
- NTA - Not The A**hole
- YTA - You're The A**hole
- ESH - Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH - No A**holes Here
"I (28F[emale]) am getting married early next spring. I have a friend, B (27F) who I've asked to be my MOH. We've been close friends since the beginning of high school, and I don't have any sisters, so it's quite important to me that she be at my side as I tie the knot."
"B has never really been in touch with her feminine side- we're sort of yin and yang in that regard! She wore a dress to prom junior year, and that's the last time I've seen her in one. After that, she wore suits to every event that required formal wear."
"I'm not going to lie, it annoys me a little, but only because I know how beautiful she looks when she puts the effort in!!"
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That sounds like outdated gender norms wrapped in a backhanded comment.
We're not off to a great start here...
"I've put a lot of time into planning out my wedding. I've hired quite an expensive photographer, and I really want to make sure I end up with some beautiful pictures I can keep forever. Part of that involves making sure the bridal party matches nicely."
"B and a couple of my other bridesmaids accompanied me to go wedding dress shopping a few weeks ago (things are reopening here). I was trying to decide between two different silhouettes and asked B which one she preferred. She said both looked beautiful but it didn't matter much what she liked, since I was the one who would be wearing it, and I said that it did matter since, as part of the bridal party, the dresses she and the other bridesmaids wore would be partially dependent on mine."
"She looked kind of surprised, and didn't say too much for the rest of the shopping trip, but messaged me afterwards telling me she hadn't been planning to wear a dress."
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This doesn't seem like the type of thing this bride would take well, does it?
"I was pretty shocked at that. I know she's not really into dresses, but I was certain that she would make an exception for her best friend's wedding! I tried to convince her, but she still flat-out refused. I explained how important it was to me that we'd all match in pictures, and she suggested that she could wear a vest in a matching color or stand with the groomsmen, but I just really want her by my side!"
"B said that it wasn't fair of me to spring this on her, since I know she doesn't wear dresses, but I genuinely thought she'd be okay with it for one day. I mean, she doesn't normally wear makeup or wear her hair down, but she agreed to do both for the wedding, so it seemed to me like she was willing to make allowances."
"I got a little frustrated with her inflexibility and we got into a bit of a tizzy. Eventually, she insisted that she wasn't willing to wear a dress, end of story, but if it was that important to me I had her blessing to choose a different MOH."
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This is an awful lot of drama to go through over an outfit choice, but OP was undeterred.
"I tried to explain that I didn't want another girl, I wanted her, but she refused to hear it."
"I feel like she's being selfish and inflexible- it's only one day, and it's my wedding, for Christ's sake! My fiance says he thinks I'm being unfair to her, but that he doesn't want to get in the middle of it. So, reddit, AITA here?"
OP's fellow Redditors were swift with their judgment.
"YTA. She's clearly not comfortable, and as you've said she's already made several allowances and even offered to not be the maid of honour. Would you force a groomsmen to wear a dress if they didn't want to?" --Alternative_Answer
"I also find it problematic that OP equates being feminine with putting "the effort in". Those are some pretty toxic gender expectations." --SingThroughMeMuse
"Such a backhanded compliment!...
"...If anything your MoH wearing a suit makes your photos unique and her stand out in her role, and let me tell you, wearing a suit takes every bit of effort as wearing a dress. Even more so with all the damn buttons. Sounds like she'll be putting the same amount of effort in as say...idk... the groom?" --its_all_relativity
"She could get a suit in the same colour as the bridal party. It is literally that easy. YTA OP." --Chinateapot
"...OP, yes, YTA. She's being flexible by wearing her hair down and makeup AND offering to let you get a new MOH and in the same breath you're saying she's inflexible???" --AdviceDoggo
"My suggestion: flowy pantsuits so her MoH's attire looks cohesive to the bride's vision, but still follows MoH's no-dress lifestyle."
"Orrr, just have all the bridesmaids wear pantsuits. If having OP's bestfriend be MoH is as important as she says, then maybe that's the way to go." --bonkerred
"Almost at every point you mentioned I pictured OP stamping her foot down like a child. its mine, I want it, she just has to. OP has known this woman for more than a decade, she's not just "not a fan of dresses" she hasnt worn one in a decade. OP, you need to wise up if you want to keep any friends. YTA" --russkayacabbage
"YTA. My sister did this to me. I'm a lesbian who dresses fairly masculine. Unlike your friend, I caved, but felt horrible about myself the whole day. The compliments on how pretty I looked just made me sadder. The pictures don't look like me. I look like a prop and nothing more." --ScarySuit
"YTA. People in your wedding aren't photo props. It seems completely reasonable to find a compromise, something that goes with your theme/color scheme but also that she is comfortable in. You wouldn't force a man to wear a dress, so if she isn't comfortable in a dress that should be respected." --NurseWhoLovesTV
To her credit, OP listened to her fellow Redditors critiques and took them to heart.
"Honestly, this wasn't the judgement I was hoping for; I thought people would validate me in this. But I've read through hundreds of replies now, and I've put a lot of thought into it, and I think y'all are right."
"At the end of the day, B's friendship is more important to me than the photos, and I don't wat her to remember my wedding day as an uncomfortable event. It looks like I owe her an apology."
"Thank you for all the suggestions of compromises like rompers, jumpsuits, flowy pantsuits, etc.- I'll bring those up to her and see if we can settle on a good compromise."
Here's hoping it's a great wedding after all.
*If you enjoyed this article, you can read more like it by clicking on the AITA link below.*