How to Get Out of Being a Bridesmaid Gracefully

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Sometimes it's a great honor to be asked to be a bridesmaid. Family members and close friends should be able to count on your support for their big occasion. However, sometimes you don't feel all that close to the bride, or you have other things going on in your life. Take a few of these tips to get out of being a bridesmaid gracefully and avoid the wedding-preparation frenzy.

  • Claim poverty. Unless the bride knows you are a person of unlimited wealth, you can conspiratorially lower your voice and explain that you are on a really tight budget at this time. Tell her that you cannot afford the bridesmaid dress, accessories, shoes, makeup and other gifts and obligations expected from a bridesmaid.

  • Blame other people for your inability to make time for the bride. Spouses and children are always good for a plausible excuse. Explain to her that you checked your family's schedule and those darn kids have you slammed and your husband is very demanding.

  • Gush over the news of your bride's invitation. Tell her how honored you are to be chosen but that you couldn't possibly walk down the aisle in the condition you are in right now. Come up with some possible physical problems and tell her you wouldn't want to put her in the position making accommodations for you. When the wedding time comes, you can explain about your miraculous recovery.

  • Tell your friend as soon after she asks you as you can to give her time to ask someone else. Offer to do something on the day of the wedding if you are attending, like helping with her makeup or being a babysitter for younger guests.

Tips & Warnings

  • Stay cordial but firm on your "no" decision.
  • Remember to congratulate the new soon to be bride. Send the couple a nice wedding gift, regardless if you are attending the wedding or not.
  • Be aware that some women take this rejection of the bridesmaid duty personally, and your friendship may suffer.

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