Congratulations! You have finally found that perfect someone. You have the perfect ring. You have been dreaming about this perfect moment since you were a little girl. This will be the most memorable day of your entire life. Everything must be absolutely perfect for your perfect day …
WHOA! Stop right there! That’s a lot of “perfect“ – meaning that is a lot of pressure. The pressure to be the “perfect bride” and have the “perfect wedding” can prove to be too much for some. Before they know it, some Brides-to-be find themselves lying on the floor of a bridal salon throwing a temper tantrum worthy of an Oscar; leaving their friends and family asking themselves, “who is this monster“?
This monster, my friends, is Bridezilla!
A term coined in the early 1990s, a Bridezilla is defined as, “a difficult, unpleasant, perfectionist bride who leaves aggravated family, friends and vendors in her wake. She is often called greedy, selfish and spoiled; not caring about the people that she hurts to get exactly what she wants on her perfect day.” The most frightening aspect of a Bridezilla is that even then most laid-back, well mannered woman can become one over night and without warning.
So what do you do if you or someone you love is showing symptoms of Bridezilla-ism? Here are a some tips on how to defeat a Bridezilla:
- Start by first removing the word “perfect” from your vocabulary for the entire span of the wedding planning process. If you look for perfection, you will be disappointed. Instead, use words such as “happy”, “fun”, and “memorable”.
- Be realistic, not idealistic. One of the first things a newly engaged woman buys is a bridal magazine. Although this wealth of information is a good place to start if you do not already have ideas about what you envision for your wedding day, it can also be overwhelmingly full of expensive and glamorous items that may not be necessary. Being realistic about what you and your fiance can afford and coming up with a budget is a good place to start to avoid headaches and arguments down the road.
- Planning a wedding can take upwards of 9-12 months, resulting in your impending nuptials consuming your every waking thought, making it is easy to forget that the rest of the world. To avoid this try planning a “date night“ once a week with your fiance that has one strict rule – No Wedding Talk. Be romantic and remind each other why you wanted to get married in the first place. Don’t forget your friend and family either, plan a night out with your girlfriends (including members of the bridal party if possible) and enforce the “No Wedding Talk” rule. Instead, dish on the latest gossip, and spend an evening focusing on catching up on one each others lives.
- Find time for yourself. Even though many details of the wedding are focused on you as the bride, you may feel overwhelmed and not want to be in the spotlight all the time. This is why it is important to take time for yourself during the planning phase so that you do not get burnt. Keep up with your exercise routine (or maybe start one), eat healthy foods, read a good book and dedicate at least one day a week to focusing on other things besides the wedding. Ignoring your own needs during this time is not a wise move to make.
- Repeat this mantra: “this is our wedding” over and over again. By repeating this you will be reminding yourself that it is not just your wedding, it is your fiance’s wedding too. A wedding should be a reflection of the couple and a celebration of their personalities. “This is our wedding” also means it is not your mother’s, mother-in-law’s, sister’s, or friend’s wedding. If you prefer an intimate affair in Jamaica, or if you want to get married in Las Vegas by Elvis, so be it – make it your own.
- Focus on the positive things that your family and friends have done, rather than the fact that someone missed a shower, or their shoes are not the color you wanted. Remember that your bridal party and family are making large investments to be part of your big day … Be grateful. Remember to say ‘thank you’ to everyone before and after the wedding!
- Ask for and accept help. Your wedding is not only the joining of you and your fiance, but also the joining of your two families. This means that there are a lot of people who love and support you and are willing to help however they can. If this seems like to much to ask of your family, hire a wedding planner. A wedding planner is your right-hand woman; she can help plan pre-wedding events as well as make sure you have everything you need on your wedding day.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff. It is inevitable that something will not go as planned during the time leading up to the wedding, or on the wedding day itself. Phone calls get missed, shoes vanish, and sometimes people are late, but that’s not the time to lose it. Realizing that you do not have control over every situation will allow you to go with the flow and remain composed.
- Focus on the future. With so much hype leading up to the wedding day itself, it is easy to forget about preparing for your life as a married couple. Yes, the wedding day is unforgettable, but forgetting that you will be together for the next 50-60 years is not good. Attend engaged couples retreats or talk with your friends, families, and fiance about ways to prepare for a good marriage.
A wedding is a celebration of the Bride, the Groom and the joining of their families. Most importantly, a wedding is a recognition of the love two people have for one another. If you or a loved one begins to show signs of becoming a Bridezilla, remind them to take a step back, a deep breath and focus on the love they have for their partner.
If that doesn’t work, sit them down and have them watch this video and make them promise to never-ever be like this Bride (skip to 1:36 to get to the good stuff):